Visualizing Isaiah 31: Egypt relies on horses and chariots

A woe is announced on those who go to Egypt for help in the form of horses and chariots.

Woe to those who go down to Egypt for help and rely on horses, who trust in chariots because they are many and in horsemen because they are very strong, but do not look to the Holy One of Israel or consult the LORD! (Isaiah 31:1 ESV)

The prophet explains that this would be a mistake for Israel.

The Egyptians are man, and not God, and their horses are flesh, and not spirit. When the LORD stretches out his hand, the helper will stumble, and he who is helped will fall, and they will all perish together. (Isaiah 31:3 ESV)

The temple walls throughout Egypt are replete with reliefs of the Pharaohs riding in their chariots pulled by powerful horses. Their enemies are portrayed as tiny and trodden down. The photo below is on one of the large interior walls of the Mortuary Temple of Ramses III at Medinet Habu in the Valley of the Kings at Luxor. Various conquered enemies are portrayed on the walls of the temple.

Relief from the mortuary temple of Ramses III. Photo by Ferrell Jenkins.

Relief from the mortuary temple of Ramses III. Photo by Ferrell Jenkins.

Solomon had made this mistake earlier, but Israel failed to learn from it (1 Kings 10:26). Moses prohibited the kings of Israel from returning to Egypt to acquire horses.

“Moreover, he shall not multiply horses for himself, nor shall he cause the people to return to Egypt to multiply horses, since the LORD has said to you, ‘You shall never again return that way.’(Deuteronomy 17:16 NAU)

 

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2 responses to “Visualizing Isaiah 31: Egypt relies on horses and chariots

  1. Pingback: Around the Web (4/16) | InGodsImage.com

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