讀經: 以賽亞書 十九16~25
SCRIPTURE READING: Isaiah 19:16-25
釋義: 神雖擊打埃及, 懲罰她的崇邪與惡行, 但至終要施行拯救, 叫她回轉。本段可分五小段, 每一小段都以「當那日」開始(16, 18-19, 23-24) , 遙指將來耶和華建立彌賽亞國度的日子。
INSIGHT: God strikes Egypt to punish her for worshipping idols and for her wickedness; yet God delivers and calls for her revival at the end. This passage can be divided into 5 small sections, each starting with “In that day” (16, 18-19, 23-24), foretelling the day when the Lord will establish the kingdom of the Messiah.
以賽亞預見外邦人歸主, 在這裏藉以色列自古以來的敵人埃及作代表象徵(參三十2-5)。這五段逐步道出埃及人的回轉、信奉耶和華, 而最後更刻劃出國家之間再無戰事、和平共存的情景。這過程從開始是畏懼(16-17), 繼而順服(18),然後有神賜予的途徑(19-22:「壇」和「祭物」), 再後是相交(23)及完全的接納(24-25)。
Isaiah foresees the gentiles turning to God, using Egypt, the Israelites’ enemy since ancient times, as a symbol (30:2-5). These 5 sections gradually unfold the turning of the Egyptians to the Lord, revealing a peaceful scene with no more wars among the nations at the end. This process starts with fear (16-17), followed by submission (18), then the blessing of a pathway to God (19-22, “altar” and “sacrifice”), and ending with fellowship (23) and total acceptance (24-25).
20-22節描述埃及將來景況的字詞, 與以色列人出埃及前的情形有許多相同: 「記號」(出三12譯作「證據」; 四8等是「神蹟」); 「欺壓」(出三9); 「哀求」(出三7,9的「哀聲」); 「差遣」(即出三10-12「打發」); 「拯救」(出三8「救」); 「埃及人必認識耶和華」(出六7七5八10等); 「敬拜」(出三12譯為「事奉」); 「擊打埃及」(出2「蹧蹋」; 十二23等「擊殺」)。 這些相同的用字表達神愛「世人」的心意。神拯救以色列人離開埃及; 將來也同樣拯救以色列人的敵人。神救贖的旨意是一視同仁、不論國籍、無分敵我。
There are a lot of similarities in the wording used to describe the future of Egypt in verse 20-22 and the wording previously used on the Israelites before they left Egypt: “sign” (Exodus 3:12 translated to “sign”, 4:8 etc. “sign”), “oppression” (Exodus 3:9), ”pleas” (Exodus 3:7,9 “cry”), “send” (Exodus 3:10-12 “send”), “deliver” (Exodus 3:8 “deliver”), “the Egyptians will know the Lord” (Exodus 6:7, 7:5, 8:10 etc.), “worship” (Exodus 3:12 “serve”), “strike Egypt” (Exodus 2 “ruin“, 12:23 etc. “strike”). The similarity in wording shows that God loves ‘the world’. He brought the Israelites out of Egypt. He will also deliver the enemies of the Israelites. God’s plan is to save everyone, regardless of nationality or political association.
先知破除了長久的隔離, 稱埃及作「我的百姓」, 亞述為「我手的工作」,這都是一些本來只可用於以色列的親切說話。此種寬廣的世界觀, 經常被民族主義所遮蓋, 尤其是以色列人從被擄歸回後, 更極度排斥外邦, 這種種族歧視實在與以賽亞所講的背道而馳。
The prophet abolishes the long-standing segregation, calling Egypt “my people “, and Assyria “the work of my hands “, affectionate expressions that had only been used exclusively on Israel. This type of panoramic and impartial perspective of the world is often taken over by nationalism, especially after the Israelites returned from captivity; they have been extremely hostile towards the gentiles. This type of discrimination is essentially the opposite of what Isaiah says.
The teaching of this passage cannot be more relevant today than any other times. The fight between the Israelis and the Palestinians, and Israel’s hostility towards the Arab countries are worse now than in biblical times. It also challenges how we view the relationship between Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. How many Christians can say ‘In that day the church will be third with Egypt and Assyria, a blessing in the midst of the earth’?
In the collection of Pope John XXIII’s speeches, posted on the first page is a photo of the pope from the night of the second Vatican Council.
「教宗站在他書房的窗口, 向下面聖彼得廣場上成千上萬個歡呼的天主教徒微笑示意。他叫眾人安靜後, 跟他們講話: 『回家去吧,』他說: 『把愛從這裡傳佈到全世界。』」
‘Standing at the window of his study, the pope smiled to the thousands of cheering Catholics in St. Peter’s Square. He called for the crowd to calm down, and then addressed them saying, “When you go back to your home, spread the love from here to the whole world.”’
Nothing is more important than uniting the people of the world in the love of Christ.
每日讀經 by 洪同勉牧師 Rev. Tommy Hung