New International Version
6 A prophecy concerning the animals of the Negev:
Through a land of hardship and distress,
of lions and lionesses,
of adders and darting snakes,
the envoys carry their riches on donkeys’ backs,
their treasures on the humps of camels,
to that unprofitable nation,
to Egypt, whose help is utterly useless.
Therefore I call her
Rahab the Do-Nothing.
Isaiah speaks a word concerning the journey those would take to bring their riches to Egypt to pay for their help and assistance against the Assyrian Empire. It was a dangerous journey that would require those who took it to risk their lives. But God reveals the foolishness of this action. They could simply trust in the Lord and His promises instead of taking a dangerous journey to give their riches to Egypt who in the long run would be of no help. The Lord says it would be a journey of hardship, distress, it is a place of the lion and lioness, where the adders and darting snakes would be found.
God always sends forth His word as a warning and a comfort. God’s desire is for His people to trust Him no matter the circumstances that stand before Him. The warning found in His word is that if we reject His word and go our own way, there will always be consequences that are detrimental to our lives. But the comfort is if we will heed the word of God and live according to it, that God will be faithful to His word and bring to pass His plans and purposes. We must remember that the word of God is not a suggestion. It comes directly from the Lord and is meant to dictate the very course of our lives. This should be the case if Jesus is truly Lord. But sadly some today claim Christ as Lord but fail to live according to His word.
In the end God says that the help of Egypt would be utterly useless. Israel looked at Egypt from a human perspective. In their minds they believed that if they secured the help of Egypt they would be protected. But the fate of those who trust in man is always the same. It always ends in destruction. The help of Egypt would be useless. It was God alone who would protect and sustain Israel. By choosing to trust in Egypt the Israelites were choosing to reject the Living God. The only way they would be able to experience the blessing found in God based on the covenant that God established with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob was to live according to that covenant.
The Lord says that Egypt will be called Rahab do nothing. In other translations it says sit still or exterminated. Rahab was a mythical creator in paganism that represents chaos. A mighty sea dragon that was believed to be powerful. But what God is saying is that He will bring the power and prestige of Egypt to nothing. God alone controls and rules over the nations of the earth. For Israel to trust in the nations, their militaries, and their false gods was to abandon the Living God and choose the way of foolishness.
In our lives we will face different seasons in which it seems we are outgunned and outnumbered. It seems the enemy has us surrounded and that God has forsaken us. But this is a place of testing and a place of growing. The only way our faith truly grows is to go through the fire. We all would love to live in a place of comfort, have it easy, and praise God all day long. But God’s desire is to always take us deeper. To teach us to trust Him at His word and to let go of what our eyes and ears tell us. We are called to walk by faith and that faith is based on the word of God.