Adapted from the writing of David Parsons, media director for the ICEJ
After the incredible deliverance of the Israelites from Egypt in Exodus, they journeyed as far as Sinai to receive the law. God then used Moses to lead the Hebrew children to the land promised to Abraham. However, were required to follow the divine instructions they received Sinai in order to order to enjoy the fruit and possession of this land.
Failure in this regard meant divine correction and even exile. God though, always swore to bring them back to the land no matter how far He scattered them (Deuteronomy 30:1-10). Judgement was accompanied by promises of restoration.
God often used the attacks and oppression of surrounding nations to bring correction. But the intent of these nations was always evil, showing no mercy and boasting that their hand had done it. So, after judging Israel, the Lord would turn towards those same nations and judge them (Isaiah 47:1-7; Jeremiah 25:7-14; Jeremiah 50:1-13; Ezekiel 35:12-13; Zechariah 1:15) He even vowed to bring upon them the curses and plagues which He had once brought upon His own people (Deuteronomy 30:7).
For the past 2,000 years, Israel was scattered among nations that oppressed and abused them. Now we live in a time when God is restoring Israel back to her land, so we can now expect Him to also judge those nations. Jeremiah 30 indeed promises that God will make a “full end” of all the nations where He had scattered them. And Joel 3:1-3 for example warns of the severe judgment that will one day come upon the nations seeking to divide His land.
Interestingly, the Bible draws a clear analogy between this end-time judgment of the nations and the Israelite escape from Egypt. For instance, Jeremiah says, “Therefore behold, the days are coming,” says the Lord, “that it shall no more be said, ‘The Lord lives who brought up the children of Israel from the land of Egypt,’ but, ‘The Lord lives who brought up the children of Israel from the land of the north and from all the lands where He had driven them.’ For I will bring them back into their land which I gave to their fathers.” (Jeremiah 16:14-15).
We have seen the incredible return of the Israelites from captivity, but we have yet to see the mighty hand of God truly humbling the nations like He did with Pharaoh.
Now compare many of the judgments foretold in Revelation with the plagues which struck Egypt. Of the ten plagues described in the book of Exodus, five are also found in Revelation. This includes hail mingled with fire (Revelation 8:7); the seas and rivers turned to blood (8:8, 16:3-4); locust (9:1-11); loathsome sores like boils (16:2); and darkness (16:10-11); In addition, the Two Witnesses who show up in Revelation 11 have powers much like Moses (and Elijah) to call down fire from heaven, to stop the rains, to turn water to blood, and “to strike the earth with all plagues, as often as they desire.”
Zechariah 14 also speaks of the day when God will gather all nations to Jerusalem for judgment. Though the city sees great destruction, the Lord Himself will appear on the scene and “fight against those nations, as He fights in the day of battle.” The prophet then describes a miraculous parting of the Mount of Olives that provides a path of escape for the people of Israel (Zechariah 14:4-5). Notice that this prophesied event bears an uncanny resemblance to the parting of the Red Sea. Indeed, the modern-day Exodus is far from over and its end will be more awesome than we can imagine.