Isaiah 19:1
Parallel Verses
New International Version
A prophecy against Egypt: See, the LORD rides on a swift cloud and is coming to Egypt. The idols of Egypt tremble before him, and the hearts of the Egyptians melt with fear.

New Living Translation
This message came to me concerning Egypt: Look! The LORD is advancing against Egypt, riding on a swift cloud. The idols of Egypt tremble. The hearts of the Egyptians melt with fear.

English Standard Version
An oracle concerning Egypt. Behold, the LORD is riding on a swift cloud and comes to Egypt; and the idols of Egypt will tremble at his presence, and the heart of the Egyptians will melt within them.

New American Standard Bible
The oracle concerning Egypt. Behold, the LORD is riding on a swift cloud and is about to come to Egypt; The idols of Egypt will tremble at His presence, And the heart of the Egyptians will melt within them.

King James Bible
The burden of Egypt. Behold, the LORD rideth upon a swift cloud, and shall come into Egypt: and the idols of Egypt shall be moved at his presence, and the heart of Egypt shall melt in the midst of it.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
An oracle against Egypt: Look, the LORD rides on a swift cloud and is coming to Egypt. Egypt's idols will tremble before Him, and Egypt's heart will melt within it.

International Standard Version
A message about Egypt: "Watch out! The LORD rides on a swift cloud, and is coming to Egypt. The idols of Egypt tremble before him, and the hearts of the Egyptians melt within them.

NET Bible
Here is a message about Egypt: Look, the LORD rides on a swift-moving cloud and approaches Egypt. The idols of Egypt tremble before him; the Egyptians lose their courage.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
This is the divine revelation about Egypt. The LORD is riding on a fast-moving cloud and is coming to Egypt. Egypt's idols will tremble in his presence. Egypt's courage will fail.

Jubilee Bible 2000
The burden of Egypt. Behold, the LORD rides upon a swift cloud and shall come into Egypt, and the idols of Egypt shall be moved at his presence, and the heart of Egypt shall melt in the midst of it.

King James 2000 Bible
The burden concerning Egypt. Behold, the LORD rides upon a swift cloud, and shall come into Egypt: and the idols of Egypt shall tremble at his presence, and the heart of Egypt shall melt in the midst of it.

American King James Version
The burden of Egypt. Behold, the LORD rides on a swift cloud, and shall come into Egypt: and the idols of Egypt shall be moved at his presence, and the heart of Egypt shall melt in the middle of it.

American Standard Version
The burden of Egypt. Behold, Jehovah rideth upon a swift cloud, and cometh unto Egypt: and the idols of Egypt shall tremble at his presence; and the heart of Egypt shall melt in the midst of it.

Douay-Rheims Bible
THE burden of Egypt. Behold the Lord will ascend upon a swift cloud, and will enter into Egypt, and the idols of Egypt shall be moved at his presence, and the heart of Egypt shall melt in the midst thereof.

Darby Bible Translation
The burden of Egypt. Behold, Jehovah rideth upon a swift cloud, and cometh to Egypt; and the idols of Egypt are moved at his presence, and the heart of Egypt melteth in the midst of it.

English Revised Version
The burden of Egypt. Behold, the LORD rideth upon a swift cloud, and cometh unto Egypt: and the idols of Egypt shall be moved at his presence, and the heart of Egypt shall melt in the midst of it.

Webster's Bible Translation
The burden of Egypt. Behold, the LORD rideth upon a swift cloud, and will come into Egypt: and the idols of Egypt shall be moved at his presence, and the heart of Egypt shall melt in the midst of it.

World English Bible
The burden of Egypt: "Behold, Yahweh rides on a swift cloud, and comes to Egypt. The idols of Egypt will tremble at his presence; and the heart of Egypt will melt in its midst.

Young's Literal Translation
The burden of Egypt. Lo, Jehovah is riding on a swift thick cloud, And He hath entered Egypt, And moved have been the idols of Egypt at His presence, And the heart of Egypt melteth in its midst.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

19:1-17 God shall come into Egypt with his judgments. He will raise up the causes of their destruction from among themselves. When ungodly men escape danger, they are apt to think themselves secure; but evil pursues sinners, and will speedily overtake them, except they repent. The Egyptians will be given over into the hand of one who shall rule them with rigour, as was shortly after fulfilled. The Egyptians were renowned for wisdom and science; yet the Lord would give them up to their own perverse schemes, and to quarrel, till their land would be brought by their contests to become an object of contempt and pity. He renders sinners afraid of those whom they have despised and oppressed; and the Lord of hosts will make the workers of iniquity a terror to themselves, and to each other; and every object around a terror to them.

Pulpit Commentary

Verses 1-17. - THE BURDEN OF EGYPT. It has been doubted whether this prophecy refers to the conquest of Egypt by Piankhi, as related in the monument which he set up at Napata, or to that by Esarhaddon, of which we gain our knowledge from the inscriptions of his son, Asshur-bani-pal. In the former case, we must suppose it written as early as B.C. 735; in the latter, its date might be as late as B.C. 690. The division of Egypt, "kingdom against kingdom," is a circumstance rather in favor of the earlier date; but the "cruel lord," and the mention of the "princes of Zoan and Noph," are decisive for the later. Piankhi is anything rather than a "cruel lord," being particularly mild and clement; Napata (Noph) is under him, and cannot be said to have been "deceived" or to have "seduced Egypt;" and Zoan plays no part in the history of the period. Esarhaddon, on the contrary, was decidedly a "cruel" prince, and treated Egypt with great severity, splitting it up into a number of governments. Zoan was one of the leading cities of the time, and Noph was the leading power on the Egyptian side, the head of the patriotic party which resisted the Assyrian monarch, but to no purpose. We may, therefore, regard this prophecy as one of Isaiah's latest, placed where it is merely on account of its head-tug - the compiler having placed all the "burdens" against foreign countries together. Verse 1. - The Lord rideth upon a swift cloud. Natural imagery to express the rapidity of Divine visitations (comp. Psalm 104:3). God, being about to visit Egypt with a judgment of extreme severity, is represented as entering the land in person (so in Isaiah 13:5). The idols of Egypt shall be moved. Neither Piankhi nor any other Ethiopian conqueror made war on the Egyptian idols; but the Assyrians were always bent on humbling the gods of the hostile countries (see above, Isaiah 10:10; and comp. Isaiah 36:18-20). We have no detailed account of Esarhaddon's campaign; but we find Asshur-bani-pal's first victory over Tirhakah immediately followed by the presentation to him in his camp of Egyptian deities (G. Smith, 'History of Asshur-bani-pal,' p. 20, 1. 1), i.e. of their images. These were probably taken to Nineveh, or else destroyed. At a later date, the same monarch deprived an Egyptian temple of two of its sacred obelisks (ibid., p. 54, 11. 4, 5). The heart of Egypt shall molt (coup. Isaiah 13:7; Psalm 22:14).

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

The burden of Egypt;.... Or a prophecy concerning Egypt, as the Arabic version; a very grievous one, declaring many calamities that should come upon them. The Targum is,

"the burden of the cup of cursing, to make the Egyptians drink.''

The people of the Jews reposed great confidence in the Egyptians their allies; wherefore, in order to break this confidence, it was necessary they should be acquainted with the destruction that was coming upon them, which is the design of this prophecy.

Behold, the Lord rideth upon a swift cloud: or a "light" one (q) denoting the speed with which he came, he would come quickly, light clouds move swiftly; the suddenness and unexpectedness of his coming, clouds being rarely seen in Egypt, where was no rain; and the irresistible power with which he would come, for who or what can stop the clouds of heaven? not anything on earth, not armies, nor castles, and fortified places. The Lord is represented as riding in great state and majesty, as a general at the head of his army against his enemies; or as a judge going to try and condemn criminals; he rides upon the heavens, walks on the wings of the wind, and the clouds are his chariot, Psalm 68:4 so Christ is represented as coming in the clouds of heaven, and as sitting on a white cloud, when he shall come to judge the world, Revelation 1:7 though these words are not to be understood of that coming of his; and much less of his first coming in the flesh, to which they are weakly applied by Jerom and others; who, by the light cloud, understand the Virgin Mary, as the Christians of Syria; or the human nature of Christ, as Salmero, who relates, that upon Christ's flight into Egypt, and entering into Heliopolis, and the temple there, in which were as many idols as days of the year, they all fell, and so this prophecy was fulfilled (r) but of the Lord's coming to inflict punishment on the Egyptians; so the Targum,

"and, behold, the Lord shall be revealed in the cloud of his glory, to take vengeance on the Egyptians:''

and shall come into Egypt; not by Sennacherib king of Assyria, and his army, whom he should send to invade it, and enter into it, as some think; but rather by Cambyses and Ochus, kings of Persia; though it seems that what is here foretold should be done, was done, not by means of any foreign power, but by the Lord himself, who did by his own power and providence, or suffer to be done, what was done:

and the idols of Egypt shall be moved at his presence; or tremble before him; these were many, the chief of them were Osiris and Isis, Apis, Serapis, Vulcan, Bubastis, &c.; some were living creatures, as cats, dogs, oxen, sheep, &c. who might move and tremble, in a literal sense; and some were images, "made with hands", as the Septuagint here render the word; and which, as the Targum paraphrases it, should "be broken"; the sense is, that they could none of them save the Egyptians, or deliver them out of their distresses:

and the heart of Egypt shall melt in the midst of it; like wax before the fire; even the most courageous among them, their soldiers, their army, with their officers and generals; which were the heart of the people, and their defence, and who used to fight for them, and protect them, but now would be dispirited.

(q) "super nubem levem", V. L. Pagninus, &c. (r) Vid. Hackspan. Not. Philolog. in S. Scrip. par. 584.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

CHAPTER 19

Isa 19:1-25.

The nineteenth and twentieth chapters are connected, but with an interval between. Egypt had been held by an Ethiopian dynasty, Sabacho, Sevechus, or Sabacho II, and Tirhakah, for forty or fifty years. Sevechus (called So, the ally of Hoshea, 2Ki 17:4), retired from Lower Egypt on account of the resistance of the priests; and perhaps also, as the Assyrians threatened Lower Egypt. On his withdrawal, Sethos, one of the priestly caste, became supreme, having Tanis ("Zoan") or else Memphis as his capital, 718 B.C.; while the Ethiopians retained Upper Egypt, with Thebes as its capital, under Tirhakah. A third native dynasty was at Sais, in the west of Lower Egypt; to this at a later period belonged Psammetichus, the first who admitted Greeks into Egypt and its armies; he was one of the dodecarchy, a number of petty kings between whom Egypt was divided, and by aid of foreign auxiliaries overcame the rest, 670 B.C. To the divisions at this last time, Gesenius refers Isa 19:2; and Psammetichus, Isa 19:4, "a cruel lord." The dissensions of the ruling castes are certainly referred to. But the time referred to is much earlier than that of Psammetichus. In Isa 19:1, the invasion of Egypt is represented as caused by "the Lord"; and in Isa 19:17, "Judah" is spoken of as "a terror to Egypt," which it could hardly have been by itself. Probably, therefore, the Assyrian invasion of Egypt under Sargon, when Judah was the ally of Assyria, and Hezekiah had not yet refused tribute as he did in the beginning of Sennacherib's reign, is meant. That Assyria was in Isaiah's mind appears from the way in which it is joined with Israel and Egypt in the worship of Jehovah (Isa 19:24, 25). Thus the dissensions referred to (Isa 19:2) allude to the time of the withdrawal of the Ethiopians from Lower Egypt, probably not without a struggle, especially with the priestly caste; also to the time when Sethos usurped the throne and entered on the contest with the military caste, by the aid of the town populations: when the Saitic dynasty was another cause of division. Sargon's reign was between 722-715 B.C. answering to 718 B.C., when Sethos usurped his throne [G. V. Smith].

1. burden—(See on [716]Isa 13:1).

upon … cloud—(Ps 104:3; 18:10).

come into Egypt—to inflict vengeance. "Egypt," in Hebrew, Misraim, plural form, to express the two regions of Egypt. Bunsen observes, The title of their kings runs thus: "Lord of Upper and Lower Egypt."

idols—the bull, crocodile, &c. The idols poetically are said to be "moved" with fear at the presence of one mightier than even they were supposed to be (Ex 12:12; Jer 43:12).

Isaiah 19:1 Additional Commentaries
Context
The Burden Concerning Egypt
1The oracle concerning Egypt. Behold, the LORD is riding on a swift cloud and is about to come to Egypt; The idols of Egypt will tremble at His presence, And the heart of the Egyptians will melt within them. 2"So I will incite Egyptians against Egyptians; And they will each fight against his brother and each against his neighbor, City against city and kingdom against kingdom.…
Cross References
Matthew 26:64
"You have said so," Jesus replied. "But I say to all of you: From now on you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven."

Revelation 1:7
"Look, he is coming with the clouds," and "every eye will see him, even those who pierced him"; and all peoples on earth "will mourn because of him." So shall it be! Amen.

Exodus 12:12
"On that same night I will pass through Egypt and strike down every firstborn of both people and animals, and I will bring judgment on all the gods of Egypt. I am the LORD.

Joshua 2:11
When we heard of it, our hearts melted in fear and everyone's courage failed because of you, for the LORD your God is God in heaven above and on the earth below.

1 Samuel 5:3
When the people of Ashdod rose early the next day, there was Dagon, fallen on his face on the ground before the ark of the LORD! They took Dagon and put him back in his place.

Psalm 18:9
He parted the heavens and came down; dark clouds were under his feet.

Psalm 18:10
He mounted the cherubim and flew; he soared on the wings of the wind.

Psalm 104:3
and lays the beams of his upper chambers on their waters. He makes the clouds his chariot and rides on the wings of the wind.

Isaiah 13:1
A prophecy against Babylon that Isaiah son of Amoz saw:

Isaiah 13:7
Because of this, all hands will go limp, every heart will melt with fear.

Jeremiah 4:13
Look! He advances like the clouds, his chariots come like a whirlwind, his horses are swifter than eagles. Woe to us! We are ruined!

Jeremiah 43:11
He will come and attack Egypt, bringing death to those destined for death, captivity to those destined for captivity, and the sword to those destined for the sword.

Jeremiah 43:12
He will set fire to the temples of the gods of Egypt; he will burn their temples and take their gods captive. As a shepherd picks his garment clean of lice, so he will pick Egypt clean and depart.

Jeremiah 44:8
Why arouse my anger with what your hands have made, burning incense to other gods in Egypt, where you have come to live? You will destroy yourselves and make yourselves a curse and an object of reproach among all the nations on earth.

Jeremiah 46:13
This is the message the LORD spoke to Jeremiah the prophet about the coming of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon to attack Egypt:

Ezekiel 29:2
"Son of man, set your face against Pharaoh king of Egypt and prophesy against him and against all Egypt.

Joel 3:19
But Egypt will be desolate, Edom a desert waste, because of violence done to the people of Judah, in whose land they shed innocent blood.

Nahum 1:1
A prophecy concerning Nineveh. The book of the vision of Nahum the Elkoshite.

Nahum 1:3
The LORD is slow to anger but great in power; the LORD will not leave the guilty unpunished. His way is in the whirlwind and the storm, and clouds are the dust of his feet.
Treasury of Scripture

The burden of Egypt. Behold, the LORD rides on a swift cloud, and shall come into Egypt: and the idols of Egypt shall be moved at his presence, and the heart of Egypt shall melt in the middle of it.

Egypt

Jeremiah 25:19 Pharaoh king of Egypt, and his servants, and his princes, and all his people;

Jeremiah 43:8-13 Then came the word of the LORD to Jeremiah in Tahpanhes, saying…

Jeremiah 44:29,30 And this shall be a sign to you, said the LORD, that I will punish …

Jeremiah 46:1 The word of the LORD which came to Jeremiah the prophet against the Gentiles;

Ezekiel 29:1 In the tenth year, in the tenth month, in the twelfth day of the …

Ezekiel 30:1 The word of the LORD came again to me, saying,

Ezekiel 31:1 And it came to pass in the eleventh year, in the third month, in …

Ezekiel 32:1 And it came to pass in the twelfth year, in the twelfth month, in …

Joel 3:19 Egypt shall be a desolation, and Edom shall be a desolate wilderness, …

Zechariah 10:11 And he shall pass through the sea with affliction, and shall smite …

Zechariah 14:18 And if the family of Egypt go not up, and come not, that have no …

rideth

Deuteronomy 33:26 There is none like to the God of Jeshurun, who rides on the heaven …

Psalm 18:10-12 And he rode on a cherub, and did fly: yes, he did fly on the wings …

Psalm 68:4,33,34 Sing to God, sing praises to his name: extol him that rides on the …

Psalm 104:34 My meditation of him shall be sweet: I will be glad in the LORD.

Matthew 26:64,65 Jesus said to him, You have said: nevertheless I say to you, Hereafter …

Revelation 1:7 Behold, he comes with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they …

the idols

Isaiah 21:9 And, behold, here comes a chariot of men, with a couple of horsemen. …

Isaiah 46:1,2 Bel bows down, Nebo stoops, their idols were on the beasts, and on …

Exodus 12:12 For I will pass through the land of Egypt this night, and will smite …

1 Samuel 5:2-4 When the Philistines took the ark of God, they brought it into the …

Jeremiah 43:12 And I will kindle a fire in the houses of the gods of Egypt; and …

Jeremiah 46:25 The LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, said; Behold, I will punish …

Jeremiah 50:2 Declare you among the nations, and publish, and set up a standard; …

Jeremiah 51:44 And I will punish Bel in Babylon, and I will bring forth out of his …

Ezekiel 30:13 Thus said the Lord GOD; I will also destroy the idols, and I will …

the heart

Isaiah 19:16 In that day shall Egypt be like to women: and it shall be afraid …

Exodus 15:14-16 The people shall hear, and be afraid: sorrow shall take hold on the …

Joshua 2:9,11,24 And she said to the men, I know that the LORD has given you the land, …

Jeremiah 46:5,15,16 Why have I seen them dismayed and turned away back? and their mighty …

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