Regardless of your beliefs, few would dispute that the Bible is one of the most important documents from antiquity. While the original autographs are lost, more copies of it exist than any other ancient writings. Some are also quite old. While not a history book per se, since its events are set in our past, the Bible does have many historical references. Understanding these passages may have been easy to the original audience, but not always for us. Granted, many people forget their elementary school comprehension skills and don’t consider: Who wrote this, when and where did they and to whom? The original context is necessary to understand what the authors meant then and what meaning it may hold for us, but I digress.
I recently came across Isaiah 19:19-20:
In that day shall there be an altar to the Lord in the midst of the land of Egypt, and a pillar at the border thereof… And it shall be for a sign and for a witness unto the Lord of hosts in the land of Egypt.”
Many have argued that this is a reference to the pyramids at Giza. A “pillar” at Giza (which may mean “border” or Giza being at the border or the Nile delta). But why? Why would God be involved in the building of this structure through a non-Hebrew people? Most people have dispensed with the idea that the Hebrews built the pyramids. The timeline and biblical references don’t fit. Others have created a variety of theories that interpret the pyramids and their internal and external structures as revealing biblical truths or signs of the creator. The problem is that they all seem forced and difficult to find.
Though there is that verse. Is it a prophetic verse referring to the time Jesus spent in Egypt? The Bible is silent on his time there, but this would make more sense. Or is this one of those verses with more than one meaning?
A fascinating reference. Perhaps someone will someday solve the mystery.