Don’t Be Sour in the Pit

Ezekiel 32:17–32 (NKJV)

17 It came to pass also in the twelfth year, on the fifteenth day of the month, that the word of the Lord came to me, saying:

18 “Son of man, wail over the multitude of Egypt,

And cast them down to the depths of the earth,

Her and the daughters of the famous nations,

With those who go down to the Pit:

19 ‘Whom do you surpass in beauty?

Go down, be placed with the uncircumcised.’

20 “They shall fall in the midst of those slain by the sword;

She is delivered to the sword,

Drawing her and all her multitudes.

21 The strong among the mighty

Shall speak to him out of the midst of hell

With those who help him:

‘They have gone down,

They lie with the uncircumcised, slain by the sword.’

The Lord once again speaks of the downfall of sinful nations, beginning with the nation of Egypt. He speaks of them being cast down into a pit, being judged and cut down. Their end will be extreme and shameful.

22 “Assyria is there, and all her company,

With their graves all around her,

All of them slain, fallen by the sword.

23 Her graves are set in the recesses of the Pit,

And her company is all around her grave,

All of them slain, fallen by the sword,

Who caused terror in the land of the living.

24 “There is Elam and all her multitude,

All around her grave,

All of them slain, fallen by the sword,

Who have gone down uncircumcised to the lower parts of the earth,

Who caused their terror in the land of the living;

Now they bear their shame with those who go down to the Pit.

25 They have set her bed in the midst of the slain,

With all her multitude,

With her graves all around it,

All of them uncircumcised, slain by the sword;

Though their terror was caused

In the land of the living,

Yet they bear their shame

With those who go down to the Pit;

It was put in the midst of the slain.

26 “There are Meshech and Tubal and all their multitudes,

With all their graves around it,

All of them uncircumcised, slain by the sword,

Though they caused their terror in the land of the living.

27 They do not lie with the mighty

Who are fallen of the uncircumcised,

Who have gone down to hell with their weapons of war;

They have laid their swords under their heads,

But their iniquities will be on their bones,

Because of the terror of the mighty in the land of the living.

28 Yes, you shall be broken in the midst of the uncircumcised,

And lie with those slain by the sword.

29 “There is Edom,

Her kings and all her princes,

Who despite their might

Are laid beside those slain by the sword;

They shall lie with the uncircumcised,

And with those who go down to the Pit.

30 There are the princes of the north,

All of them, and all the Sidonians,

Who have gone down with the slain

In shame at the terror which they caused by their might;

They lie uncircumcised with those slain by the sword,

And bear their shame with those who go down to the Pit.

The Lord then shares the list of other nations who will be in the pit with Egypt. Assyria, Edom, Meshach, Tubal, and the Sidonians will all occupy the pit with Egypt.

31 “Pharaoh will see them

And be comforted over all his multitude,

Pharaoh and all his army,

Slain by the sword,”

Says the Lord God.

32 “For I have caused My terror in the land of the living;

And he shall be placed in the midst of the uncircumcised

With those slain by the sword,

Pharaoh and all his multitude,”

Says the Lord God.

Finally, God speaks of a strange comfort that will come to Egypt, knowing that they are not alone in the pit, but rather are part of a larger contingent of defeated nations under the judgment of God Almighty.

How bad does it have to get in your life that you feel comfort from other people’s pain? On the one hand, commiseration can be comforting if you realize that you are not alone in your pain. That can help in trouble–to know that others can identify with your pain. However, the tone of this message is not that. Instead, I believe that Egypt’s loss is comforted in a selfish and vindictive way, knowing that their own enemies fell as well. If I fell, then at least I was not the only one. Do not allow yourself to find joy in other’s sorrow. Rather, be at peace knowing that your sins may have caused you trouble, but that other’s pain is not a salve. Repent, and pray for the others who are suffering, knowing that God is sovereign and He will lift up and tear down as He sees fits. Trust Him and know that He is God! And don’t be sour in the pit.

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