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princes [sar] of Zoan [Tso`an] are become
fools [ya'al], the princes [sar] of Noph [Noph] are deceived
[nasha']; they have also seduced [ta`ah] Egypt [Mitsrayim], even
they that are the stay [pinnah] of the tribes [shebet] thereof. KJV-Interlinear
princes of Zoan have acted foolishly, The princes of Memphis are deluded; Those
who are the cornerstone of her tribes Have led Egypt astray. NASB
As we have already seen, the cities of Zoan and now mentioned, Noph, were two of the principal cities in the very early days of ancient Egypt. Today their exact locations are only estimated, with Noph perhaps being the same as Memphis and/or Ghizeh, but that is not the point in this verse.
They were the seat of government and authority and counsel for the entire nation and region, and as such were bound with the responsibility and leadership of its citizens.
These two cities are in ruins. The leadership of Egypt is identified with ruin.
The repetition of the name of the city of Zoan and the repetition of the reference to the princes as fools, emphasizes the total and complete failure and stupidity with which they lead and counsel.
The reference to the city of Noph adds even more ambiguity to the nature of their leadership.
The stay, means cornerstone, or the foundation upon which Egypt rested and depended.
Thus a nation of fools, was led by a government of fools, who were all fooled by the very foundation of foolish wisdom, which is not wisdom. This results is total the failure of the nation and the eventual destruction of the nation, not due to natural events, not because of weather, not because of environment, not because of anything except negative attitude toward Christ and doctrine.
Truth is rejected and that is the principle cause of all failure.
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End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.