Ezekiel 32:17–32

Read the passage.

Two weeks after he was given the lament to sing over Pharaoh, Ezekiel receives another prophecy concerning the people of Egypt. In short, the message is that the multitudes of Egypt will be sent to the realm of the dead by way of the sword. Usually, that would be the end of the message, but this time the narrative follows the slain multitudes into Sheol (also called the pit or the underworld) and describes those who are already present.

Egypt joins the likes of Assyria, Elam, Meshech-Tubal, Edom, and Sidon. Each of these nations’ multitudes lie in their graves, consigned to this place because of their iniquities and the terror they brought about to their neighbors while they lived. This pit they reside in is not a place of honor like the one the mighty men of old are presumed to dwell, but one of shame and misery.

Over and over again in this passage, the people are said to lie in the place of the uncircumcised. This is a shorthand to say they were not God’s covenant people. They were not living in the ways of their father Noah and as revealed through Moses. They could have. Both Ruth and Rahab were foreigners who chose to follow the Lord and these two women in particular became part of the Messianic line of promise.

It also seems good to point out that the Bible always describes a real, experienced afterlife, whether it is a reward or punishment. Death isn’t the end of anyone; it is not oblivion that awaits us all. While there is still time before we reach our final destinations, your trajectory is fixed once you die. Do not delay in responding to the Lord’s call for your soul.

All mankind passes before Your throne, and You judge every one of us.

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