| || |The Berean Expositor Volume 37 - Page 15 of 208 Index | Zoom | |
"As in the day when she came up out of the land of Egypt" (Hos. 2: 15) links Israel's
first deliverance with his future restoration.
Egypt in Scripture stands for the world in its apparent independence of God. Unlike
other lands that depend upon the rain of heaven, Egypt has no rain, but is dependent upon
the river Nile (Zech. 14: 18). The Nile like every other river is fed by the rain of heaven,
but it is not manifestly so in the case of Egypt and so becomes a type. Egypt, at the time
of the oppression was ruled by "another king who knew not Joseph", and who made
Israel's lives bitter with hard bondage, and eight times in Egypt called in the law "the
house of bondage". Not only was Egypt a type of the world in its oppressing and
persecuting attitude, but it is also set forth as a type of false security that it offers to the
vacillating faith of tried believers. Abraham, the father of the faithful felt its attraction
(Gen. 12: 10), and Isaiah reprimands the tendency of Israel "to trust in the shadow of
Egypt" (Isa. 30: 3; 36: 9), calling Pharaoh in whom they trusted "a broken reed".
John in the apocalypse calls the city in which the dead bodies of the two witnesses lie
"The great city which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt where our Lord was
crucified" (Rev. 11: 8).
Returning to the second chapter of Matthew we observe that the passage from Hosea
is not quoted when Joseph responded to the call "Arise and take the young child and his
mother, and go into the land of Israel" (Matt. 2: 21), the prophet's words are recorded
upon the leaving of the land of Israel and the entry into Egypt. Why is this?
This sojourning of Israel in the land of bondage was prophesied before Israel as a
nation existed. It is implied in the terms of the promise made by God to Abraham as
recorded in Gen. 15::
"And He said unto Abram, Know of a surety that thy seed shall be a stranger in a land
that is not theirs, and shall serve them; and they shall afflict them four hundred years;
and also that nation, whom they serve, will I judge: and afterward shall they come out
with great substance . . . . . in the fourth generation they shall come hither again: FOR
THE INIQUITY OF THE AMORITES IS NOT YET FULL" (13-16).
Israel's sojourn in the land of bondage was not simply for their own sakes, or for their
own deeds, it was because a period had been set for the filling up of Canaanite iniquity,
who in their turn shadow forth the fallen principalities and powers, satanic usurpers, who
have yet to be cast out and dispossessed under the true Joshua, the great Captain of the
Every "son" finds himself in "Egypt" and his full redemption cannot be entered until
the iniquity of the great spiritual Amorite is fulfilled. Into the sorrows and the straitness
that such an age purpose must entail, the "Son of God" entered, so that He may be "with"
every son that He came to redeem and share with every trial of life's waiting season.
Another answer is given to the problem set by this quotation from Hosea, by the use of
the Greek word hina, "in order that it might be fulfilled" (Matt. 2: 15). The infant Christ
went down into Egypt "in order that" He might be called out of it! Badly stated thus, the