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by Wayne Blank
Tahpanhes In Bible History
Prior to their fall to the Babylonians (see Why Babylon?), the people of Judah were committing religious and political fornication and adultery with the pagan nations around them, from Memphis and Tahpanhes in the west, to Assyrians in the east (where the people of the northern kingdom of Israel were exiled long before after they were conquered as a punishment for their own unfaithfullness - see The Galilee Captivity):
"The word of The Lord came to me, saying ... Israel was holy to The Lord, the first fruits of His harvest [see Seasons Of The Harvest] ... Be appalled, O heavens, at this, be shocked, be utterly desolate, says The Lord, for My people have committed two evils: they have forsaken Me, the fountain of Living Waters, and hewed out cisterns for themselves, broken cisterns, that can hold no water ... Moreover, the men of Memphis and Tahpanhes have broken the crown of your head. Have you not brought this upon yourself by forsaking The Lord your God, when He led you in the way? And now what do you gain by going to Egypt, to drink the waters of the Nile? Or what do you gain by going to Assyria, to drink the waters of the Euphrates?" (Jeremiah 2:1,3,12-13,16-18 RSV)
When the Babylonians returned and completed the devastation of their nation and Jerusalem (see also Temple Mount Treasures and Raiders Of The Lost Ark), some of the people of Judah fled to Tahpanhes, in disobedience to The Lord's command not to go there. They forced the prophet Jeremiah to go with them, who all the time warned them that their only hope was in obedience to God, not running to somewhere else where they could continue in their harlotry. They wouldn't listen, so The Lord had the Babylonians destroy Tahpanhes as well:
"And they came into the land of Egypt, for they did not obey the voice of The Lord. And they arrived at Tahpanhes."
Fact Finder: What other major prophet of God in that time, even while he himself was a captive in far-away Babylon, prophesied the destruction of Tahpanhes?