Update 7/10/2013 – David Wilkinson – who posts here under the name “Eschologizer” wrote a great explanation of how many of the prophecies in Daniel tie together with what we are seeing in Egypt and Syria today. He also identifies some excellent points about how Isaiah 19 ties to Matthew 24. Go read it now:
Ever since the start of the “Arab Spring” in 2011 we’ve been speculating about whether the events we were witnessing was a fulfillment of the first few verses of Isaiah 19
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. 2 I will provoke Egypt against Egypt; each will fight against his brother and each against his friend, city against city, kingdom against kingdom. 3 Egypt’s spirit will be disturbed within it, and I will frustrate its plans. Then they will seek idols, ghosts, spirits of the dead, and spiritists. 4 I will deliver Egypt into the hands of harsh masters, and a strong king will rule it. Isaiah 19:1-4 HCSB
We have seen throughout this past 2 years that no one has arisen in Egypt to calm the tension and restore a sense of a peaceful civil government (or on the other hand to completely crush all opposition). There have been moments where it looked like the Muslim Brotherhood was firmly in control, rewriting the laws and diminishing the power of others. We said here – that if they accomplished that it was likely not a good candidate for fulfillment – but at the moment I am becoming more and more convinced that it is. I don’t want to hang my hat interpreting this to one piece of scripture – since scripture is the best interpreter for scripture but at the moment I don’t have the benefit of time to search the scriptures for related references- can I ask the group here to help out with that task and find confirmation or correction in other passages?
I know we won’t know for sure until the rest of the passage comes to pass – I’ll post that here for reference:
This is the declaration of the Lord God of • Hosts . 5 The waters of the sea will dry up, and the river will be parched and dry. 6 The channels will stink; they will dwindle, and Egypt’s canals will be parched. Reed and rush will die. 7 The reeds by the Nile, by the mouth of the river, and all the cultivated areas of the Nile will wither, blow away, and vanish. 8 Then the fishermen will mourn. All those who cast hooks into the Nile will lament, and those who spread nets on the water will shrivel up. 9 Those who work with flax will be dismayed; the combers and weavers will turn pale. 10 Egypt’s weavers will be dejected; all her wage earners will be demoralized. 11 The princes of Zoan are complete fools; Pharaoh’s wisest advisers give stupid advice! How can you say to Pharaoh, “I am one of the wise, a student of eastern kings”? 12 Where then are your wise men? Let them tell you and reveal what the Lord of Hosts has planned against Egypt. 13 The princes of Zoan have been fools; the princes of Memphis are deceived. Her tribal chieftains have led Egypt astray. 14 The Lord has mixed within her a spirit of confusion. The leaders have made Egypt stagger in all she does, as a drunkard staggers in his vomit. 15 No head or tail, palm or reed, will be able to do anything for Egypt. Egypt Will Know the Lord 16 On that day Egypt will be like women. She will tremble with fear because of the threatening hand of the Lord of Hosts when He raises it against her. 17 The land of Judah will terrify Egypt; whenever Judah is mentioned, Egypt will tremble because of what the Lord of Hosts has planned against it. 18 On that day five cities in the land of Egypt will speak the language of Canaan and swear loyalty to the Lord of Hosts. One of the cities will be called the City of the Sun. 19 On that day there will be an altar to the Lord in the center of the land of Egypt and a pillar to the Lord near her border. 20 It will be a sign and witness to the Lord of Hosts in the land of Egypt. When they cry out to the Lord because of their oppressors, He will send them a savior and leader, and he will rescue them. 21 The Lord will make Himself known to Egypt, and Egypt will know the Lord on that day. They will offer sacrifices and offerings; they will make vows to the Lord and fulfill them. 22 The Lord will strike Egypt, striking and healing. Then they will return to the Lord and He will hear their prayers and heal them. 23 On that day there will be a highway from Egypt to Assyria. Assyria will go to Egypt, Egypt to Assyria, and Egypt will worship with Assyria. 24 On that day Israel will form a triple alliance with Egypt and Assyria—a blessing within the land. 25 The Lord of Hosts will bless them, saying, “Egypt My people, Assyria My handiwork, and Israel My inheritance are blessed.”
If we are right and the time of fulfillment for this prophecy is now – the Nile (the lifeblood of Egypt) will soon dry up. Such a scenario is plausible under the Ethiopian plan to dam the Blue Nile and keep much of its flow for the benefit of its own people. The second half is exciting – and I would suspect comes much later at the time of the 2 witnesses, the 144,000 and the day when Israel will look up on the one it has pierced and mourn for Him as a first born son (see Zechariah 12:10).