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Where does Africa fit in Bible prophecy?

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The Bible is, in the main, a book about physical Israel, as well as spiritual Israel, that is, the Church of God (Galatians 6:16 Galatians 6:16And as many as walk according to this rule, peace be on them, and mercy, and on the Israel of God.
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). Therefore, Scripture doesn't mention most other nations, except as they cross paths with Israel. God chose to use Israel to model His way of life, not to exclude other nations, but rather as a means of bringing all peoples to His way of life and His generous blessings.

Many end-time prophecies deal with terrible challenges of a worldwide scope, including Africa. Given the present condition of many African nations, one wonders if the fires of end-time disasters have already been ignited. God will send some terrible plagues just before Christ returns. But the world will suffer a great deal before that from disasters mankind brings on itself through sin.

Because it seems that most nations on the African continent have suffered unduly in past decades, some speculate that God placed a curse upon them. But people forget that there were prosperous black empires in ages past and that most of the continent prospered when it was part of the British Empire. A major cause of the current despair is the dictatorial rule of a few people who have enriched themselves instead of caring for their citizens. Additional problems, especially sexually transmitted diseases, can be traced to deeply entrenched customs that block needed education.

It would be difficult to overstate the damage these two factors alone have inflicted on the continent. These causes bring curses, not from God, but rather from man himself.

There are more specific references to northern Africa in conjunction with end-time prophecies about the Middle East, which principally appear to pertain to that region's Muslim population. We believe that the prophecies of the “king of the South” probably refer to an Islamic confederacy at the end of the age (Daniel 11). Our booklet The Middle East in Bible Prophecy outlines what the Bible foretells on this subject.

With the return of Jesus Christ to rule all the nations of the world, peace and justice will come to all peoples, including the peoples of Africa (Revelation 11:15 Revelation 11:15And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.
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; Isaiah 11:10-11 Isaiah 11:10-11 10 And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious. 11 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people, which shall be left, from Assyria, and from Egypt, and from Pathros, and from Cush, and from Elam, and from Shinar, and from Hamath, and from the islands of the sea.
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; 42:1-6). Psalm 68 refers to the time when everyone will submit to God, and says that “envoys will come out of Egypt; Ethiopia [Cush, probably ancestor of more than just Ethiopia] will quickly stretch out her hands to God” (verse 31). Africans will respond to God and He will show mercy to them.

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  • nyumba

    i think Isaiah 18 is a specific reference to end-time prophecy and taking place in africa

  • iNi
    I agree, Isaiah 18 and 19.
  • Ivan Veller
    Hi Nyumba, “[On the one hand,] there is reason for dating this section to around 715 B.C. At that time, around the death of Ahaz, ‘a Cushite dynasty took over Egypt…and probably sent ambassadors to Jerusalem’ (Nelson Study Bible, note on 18:1). [Thus, it could be] a reference to ‘Shabako, the Nubian successor to Osorkon [IV],’ the latter, apparently known also as King So (2 Kings 17:4 2 Kings 17:4And the king of Assyria found conspiracy in Hoshea: for he had sent messengers to So king of Egypt, and brought no present to the king of Assyria, as he had done year by year: therefore the king of Assyria shut him up, and bound him in prison.
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    ), having been defeated by Sargon II of Assyria in 716’ [Merrill]… [On the other hand, an alternate interpretation] makes it most likely an end-time prophecy. Supporting this conclusion is the repeated phrase ‘in that day’ (17:4, 7, 9), which often refers to events surrounding the coming of the Messiah to reign over the nations (compare 2:11, 17, 20; 4:1-2; 11:10-11; 12:1, 4)… ‘JFB Commentary…‘Isaiah announces the overthrow of Sennacherib’s hosts and desires the Ethiopian ambassadors, now in Jerusalem, to bring word of it to their own nation; and he calls the whole world to witness the event (vs. 3). As ch. 17:12-14 announced the presence of the foe, so ch. 18 foretells his overthrow…[and] the destruction of [Ethiopia’s] enemies’ (note on Isaiah 18). ‘Indeed, in the end time too, the ruler of Assyria—the ‘king of the North’—will be an enemy of Ethiopia, as we elsewhere see him bringing the Ethiopians as well as the Egyptians under his subjection (see Daniel 11:42-43 Daniel 11:42-43 42 He shall stretch forth his hand also on the countries: and the land of Egypt shall not escape. 43 But he shall have power over the treasures of gold and of silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt: and the Libyans and the Ethiopians shall be at his steps.
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    ). This is another reason we may view the defeat of the enemy force in Isaiah 18 in an end-time context. Also, compare verse 6 with Revelation 19:17-18 Revelation 19:17-18 17 And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the middle of heaven, Come and gather yourselves together to the supper of the great God; 18 That you may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great.
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    . ‘Finally, mention is made of a ‘present’ being brought from Ethiopia to Jerusalem. This is stated in Zephaniah 3:10 Zephaniah 3:10From beyond the rivers of Ethiopia my suppliants, even the daughter of my dispersed, shall bring my offering.
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    as well: ‘From beyond the rivers of Ethiopia My worshipers, the daughter of My dispersed ones, shall bring My offering.’ ‘These verses also appear related to Psalm 68…‘Because of Your temple at Jerusalem, kings will bring presents to you… Envoys will come out of Egypt; Ethiopia will quickly stretch out her hands to God’ (verses 29-31).”;-Gl… Note Isaiah 18:1 Isaiah 18:1Woe to the land shadowing with wings, which is beyond the rivers of Ethiopia:
    American King James Version×
    can refer to either downstream, “beyond the rivers of Ethiopia” (NKJV): “Downstream from Ethiopia…the country of Egypt” (CEV); or to upstream, “beyond the rivers of Sudan” (GWT): “Ethiopia—land…that lies at the headwaters of the Nile” (NLT 2007).
  • Ivan Veller
    Hi again Nyumba, Lastly, it is possible that “Cush…Biblical Ethiopia is not present-day Ethiopia, but a region located south of Egypt” (African Presence note on Genesis 6:1-12 Genesis 6:1-12 1 And it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born to them, 2 That the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives of all which they chose. 3 And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years. 4 There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of men, and they bore children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown. 5 And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. 6 And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart. 7 And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repents me that I have made them. 8 But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD. 9 These are the generations of Noah: Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God. 10 And Noah begat three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth. 11 The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence. 12 And God looked on the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way on the earth.
    American King James Version×
    [referenced at Isaiah 19], “Aspire: The New Women of Color Study Bible—For Strength and Inspiration,” September 2012, Zondervan). “Ethiopia, or Cush…was not the same as modern Ethiopia. It covered a much larger area, reaching from the Congo basin to Egypt, which was sometimes ruled by Cush. It can therefore be said without exaggeration that the prophet is here [(in Isaiah 18] speaking to black Africa. He pays it great attention, and prophesies that…[l]ike the Israelites (17:7), Africa will turn to God in its misery…and its former glory will be restored (18:7). What a message of hope for our continent!” (“Africa Bible Commentary: A One-Volume Commentary Written by 70 African Scholars,” August 2010, Zondervan).

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