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The United States in Bible Prophecy

Part 2

 by Steve Ashburn

 

Today, I want to revisit Isaiah 18, and explain a few things from Scripture that have not yet been fully apprehended: 

Woe to the land shadowing with wings, which is beyond the rivers of Ethiopia: That sendeth ambassadors by the sea, even in vessels of bulrushes upon the waters, saying, Go, ye swift messengers, to a nation scattered and peeled, to a people terrible from their beginning hitherto; a nation meted out and trodden down, whose land the rivers have spoiled! (Isaiah 18:1–2) 

We saw in Part 1 of this series that the “land of whirring wings” most likely represented the United States, based on our aircraft industry, and perhaps symbolically by the “wasp” pictured in the Great Lakes. Amazingly, the acronym WASP even described our ethnic origins as a nation in our native language of English, and with a couple of minorities symbolized by the two minor Great Lakes! Please read this article if you haven’t already! 

Some translators think that this chapter in Isaiah corresponds to insects buzzing around in Africa. Hah! In order to clarify this matter, let’s take a look at what the Scripture actually says. Our text passage literally can be translated, “Woe to the land of whirring wings, which is beyond the rivers of Cush, That sends ambassadors by sea, Even in vessels of papyrus on the waters…”  

In Isaiah’s day, the kingdom of Cush extended several hundred miles north of the present-day Aswan Dam, almost to the vicinity of present-day Cairo (ancient Memphis), thence eastward into the Sinai, thence southward into present-day Ethiopia. The kingdom of Egypt proper occupied the narrow Nile valley, and was divided into Upper Egypt, whose capital was Thebes, and Lower Egypt, whose capital was Memphis. The Egyptians and Cushites plied the river in papyrus “river boats” from Thebes downstream, but did not travel upriver beyond the first cataracts of the Nile (present-day Aswan Dam) because the river was simply too turbulent to navigate beyond that point!  

Also, in the days of Moses, Pharaoh had his capital by the easternmost delta branch of the Nile (which is now silted in). It was along the fertile eastern side of this branch where the “land of Goshen” was located, and this was where Israel stayed during their sojourning in Egypt. The Romans later built the city of Pelusium here, which is near present-day Port Said. This branch of the Nile is called “the river of Egypt” in Genesis 15:18, and marked the westernmost boundary of the land of Canaan. In Isaiah 23:3 this stream is known as “Sihor” and was the export route of grain headed for Tyre. The name “Sihor” comes from a root word meaning, “dark, or turbid,” indicating it was full of silt even back then. 

The use of “papyrus” in our text seems to have a dual purpose: it identifies the river in question as the lower Nile; and it implies the use of very strong ships by the “land of whirring wings.” In addition, the lower Nile remained a single stream until reaching its delta. Therefore, the term, “rivers of Cush” (plural) could only refer to the delta. The “river of Egypt” already was named in Genesis 15:18, as the easternmost delta branch, and so Isaiah named the river delta after its origin in the land of Cush. Since the kingdom of Cush extended far down the Nile, this made sense from his point of view, and may have been a common term in his day. He may not even have known about the Blue Nile and the White Nile, which are major tributaries of the Nile or the geography of Africa south of Egypt. 

Our text passage says that this “land of whirring wings” is “beyond the rivers of Cush” (emphasis mine). Accordingly, if a line is drawn from Jerusalem westward, it passes just north of the Nile delta, clips the tips of Libya and Algeria, and then intersects the middle of: the United States! Scripture implies here that the “land of whirring wings” was unknown in Isaiah’s time, but lay far to the west of Israel. (Since this nation sends “ambassadors,” Isaiah would have named it had it been known in his day.) 

The phrase, “beyond the rivers of Cush” appears only one other time in the Bible, in Zephaniah 3:10: “From beyond the rivers of Ethiopia [Cush] my suppliants, even the daughter of my dispersed, shall bring mine offering.” The context of this passage is the millennium, where the descendants of the nations that survive the tribulation (“the daughter of my dispersed”) will bring an offering yearly to the Lord at Jerusalem (Zechariah 14:16). Scripture here is referring to nations in general that are located some distance from Jerusalem, including the United States. The important point to remember is that the phrase, “beyond the rivers of Cush” refers to nations that are a considerable distance from Jerusalem, NOT residents of Ethiopia! 

Verse 2 continues, literally: “…saying, ‘Go, ye swift messengers, Unto a nation scattered and peeled, Unto a people fearful from its beginning and onwards, A nation measured out by line, and trodden down, Whose land floods have spoiled!’” (Isaiah 18:2). We saw in Parts 1-2 of this series how this described the US as scattered (from coast to coast), clean-shaven (“peeled”), highly respected (for our military power and our support of equality and the rule of law), surveyed, settled and enriched by rivers (which are transportation corridors, and sources of water for irrigation, drainage, recreation and electrical power). 

During the ice age which followed the flood (3200-2500 BC), much of the North American continent was covered by the Laurentide ice sheet. The Missouri and Ohio rivers approximated the southern boundary of this ice sheet, and today the terminal moraine can be seen just south of these rivers as a low range of hills. In addition, lateral moraines and small glacial valleys can be seen where tongues of ice from this sheet terminated at the Missouri River; these can be easily seen, for example, along Interstate 29 from Sioux Falls, South Dakota to Kansas City. When the ice sheet melted, it left giant lakes behind the terminal moraine, which gradually silted in with peat and topsoil. 

Today, many parts of the Midwest are covered with up to 30 feet of rich topsoil—for example, in Iowa. The terminal moraine also broke through in several places, washing vast amounts of soil into the land below, and into the Mississippi delta. This vast and extremely fertile farmland (and the great rivers that drain it) has created for us enormous national wealth, and is what Isaiah 18:2 means by, “Whose land floods have spoiled!”  

Another example is found in the Willamette Valley in Oregon. During the ice age, the mountainous northwest was covered by the Cordilleran ice sheet, which formed a giant ice dam over 2,000 feet tall on the Clark Fork River near present-day Sandpoint, Idaho. This formed Glacial Lake Missoula behind it, which was half the size of Lake Michigan. Eventually the rising water behind the dam weakened it so that it broke, resulting in a catastrophic flood that was ten times greater than all the world’s rivers combined! This happened repeatedly over the centuries of the ice age, forming features such as Grand Coulee and Moses Coulee (giant dry waterfalls) and the Columbia River gorge. The floodwaters also backed up repeatedly into the Willamette Valley, due to log- and ice-jams on the Columbia, depositing rich volcanic topsoil to a depth of mile in places!  

Today, this valley is one of the richest agricultural areas in the world and was widely publicized in the 1820s as a "promised land of flowing milk and honey." It was here that settlers arrived on the Oregon Trail, and started farming in this richly fertile valley, “Whose land floods have spoiled!” 

Our text passage therefore can be translated, “Woe to the land of whirring aircraft wings, which is west of the Nile delta: that sends ambassadors by sea in strong ships, saying, Go, ye swift messengers, to a nation spread out and clean-shaven, to a people highly respected from their beginning onward; a nation surveyed and settled, whose land floods have enriched!” 

In Part 1 of this series we saw how our nation, described in Isaiah 18 as “the land of whirring wings,” was suddenly caught up in the rapture, described as: “All ye inhabitants of the world, and dwellers on the earth, see ye, when he lifteth up an ensign on the mountains; and when he bloweth a trumpet, hear ye” (verse 3). This led to the sudden depopulation of the US and its subsequent conquest by other nations, most likely including Russia. 

This event takes place during a period of complacency, described as: “the LORD said unto me, I will take my rest” (verse 4). I believe this period of complacency follows a regional nuclear war in the Middle East, sometimes referred to as the “Psalm 83” war. According to Ezekiel 29 and Isaiah 19, this war is followed 40 years later by the second coming of Christ and his millennial kingdom. Please read Part 1 of this series for more details! 

I hope this article has cleared up the confusion in many people’s minds about the meaning of “rivers of Cush,” and the “floods” which have enriched our land with such enormous wealth! I provide more details of this and many other end-times prophecies in my recently published book, END TIMES DAWNING: Get Ready! (available from www.endtimesrecord.com). Please read it! Also if you would, please like my Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/endtimesrecord

Yours in Christ, 

Steve Ashburn

 

[This article was published on September 4, 2020]

 

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