This post is part 6 of our series: How God rules from heaven. In this series we cover the Biblical narrative from Genesis to Revelation and discover how the nations and peoples of the Biblical world came under the rulership of rebellious spiritual beings. However, we will also see as the series progresses, the battle to bring those nations under the rulership of Yeshua through the Great Commission.
And when they saw him they worshiped him, but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” ~ Matt 28:17-20
The aim of the series is to follow and focus on the cosmic, spiritual battle for the hearts of minds of the peoples of those nations. What happens in the physical realm is always inspired and empowered directly from the supernatural realm.
In previous posts we looked at how God Most High rules from heaven. We saw how after the rebellion at the tower of Babel, God Most High divided mankind into the 70 nations also known as the Table of Nations. These nations would make up the Biblical world and were divided according to the number of a lesser class of spiritual beings – elohim called the sons of God.
Sanitizing The Bible
For some reason, perhaps motivated by a kind of almost hysterical paranoia of promoting polytheism, the modern day Church has tried to cover up any reference of spiritual beings being called gods and ruling over nations. But perhaps an additional reason might be that the Elohim, the gods that once ruled over the nations of the 1st-century biblical world are no longer part of our world. This series is about the battle between Yeshua and His Elohim versus satan and his Elohim over the control of those 70 nations. The fact that these gods are no longer part of our world attests to the complete victory Yeshua had over his enemies.
The Elohim: What’s in a name?
The Hebrew word Elohim, translated as god, is a generic name that can be applied to any spiritual being in the Bible. The title Elohim can be applied to and includes all the different ranks and classes of angels that Yeshua created.
The Old Testament writers had no problem calling spiritual beings gods. 1st century Jews like Paul had no problem assigning the title Theos, the Greek equivalent for god to these spiritual beings.
For although there may be so-called gods in heaven or on earth—as indeed there are many “gods” and many “lords”— yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist. ~ 1 Corinthians 5- 8 ESV
The writers of the Old Testament and Paul differentiated between God Most High and those spiritual beings also called gods. The Bible clearly paints a picture of how God rules from heaven in the midst of His divine or Heavenly council which we wrote about in the first post on this series.
Israel’s Incubation Period In The Land Of Goshen
In our previous blog post we looked at how Yahweh planned to raise up a nation for Himself after the sons of God rebelled and for that nation Israel to be a light to the other nations, in order to draw them to Himself.
Paul explains the purpose of dividing up these nations in Acts 17.
and He made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their habitation, that they would seek God, if perhaps they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us; ~ Acts 17:26-27 ESV
While in Canaan Yahweh revealed to Abram some of His future plans for Abram’s descendants. This included about 112 years period, in a land where they’d be considered strangers and become slaves. The reason the Hebrews could not settle in the land of Canaan before this 112 year period was up, was that Yahweh had given the Canaanites time to repent. Once that time had been fulfilled it would be time to drive the Canaanites out of the land.
Yahweh’s foreknowledge is a bit of a mystery to us humans. Even though Yahweh knew that the Canaanites would not repent He still gave them the chance to do so.
Now when the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell upon Abram; and behold, terror and great darkness fell upon him. God said to Abram, “Know for certain that your descendants will be strangers in a land that is not theirs, where they will be enslaved and oppressed four hundred years. “But I will also judge the nation whom they will serve, and afterward they will come out with many possessions. “As for you, you shall go to your fathers in peace; you will be buried at a good old age. “Then in the fourth generation they will return here, for the iniquity of the Amorite is not yet complete.” ~ Genesis 15 NASB
The Land of Goshen
The story of how the fledgling Hebrew nation got to be in Egypt and settled in the land of Goshen can be read towards the end of the Book of Genesis and the beginning of Exodus.
The land of Goshen enjoyed a temperate and wet climate and was perfectly suited to raising livestock. Abraham and his descendants were shepherds, a semi-nomadic people and raised mainly sheep and goats. The Egyptians considered shepherds to be the lowest class of peoples and as such, they were despised. At first, the Hebrews were left alone to quietly increase in number, but as their number increased they were seen as becoming a possible national threat. Most likely this was because of their historical affiliation to the Pharaoh under whom Joseph served.
The Hyksos Pharaoh and Joseph
This is a story of intrigue about the invasion of Egypt by a people known as the Hyksos . After the invasion, they took over the political landscape for just over 100 years and installed their own Pharaohs, founding what became known as the 15th dynasty. It was a Hyksos Pharaoh that Joseph served under. 
These Hyksos were naturally hated by the native Egyptians and when they were finally driven out there was always a fear they would return. Given the close association, the Hebrews had with the Hyksos, it appears that the Egyptians were afraid that they would join the Hyksos should they return. Ironically it was the Hyksos people who introduced horse-driven chariots to Egypt and the rest is Biblical history. [3 & 4]
Now a new king arose over Egypt, who did not know Joseph. He said to his people, “Behold, the people of the sons of Israel are more and mightier than we. “Come, let us deal wisely with them, or else they will multiply and in the event of war, they will also join themselves to those who hate us, and fight against us and depart from the land.” ~ Exodus 1 NASB
Eventually, the Egyptians enslaved the Hebrews. This is where we see the first organised effort of the gods (elohim) of Egypt to thwart Yahweh’s plan to raise a nation unto Himself. They did this by working the Hebrews to death and restricting them from multiplying.
Coming Up Next
In our next blog post, we will look at how Yahweh deals with the Pharaoh and the elohim of Egypt when they refuse to let the Hebrews go.
We all know the dialogue between Moses and Pharaoh and Pharaoh’s heart being hardened, but maybe there’s more going on than first meets the eye?
 Here’s a video from Bruce Gore, who lectures on Biblical history. This video covers Joseph’s relationship with the Hyksos Pharaoh.
 p5. ‘The Encyclopedia of Military History’ (4th edition 1993), Dupuy & Dupuy
Around 1700 BCE an outside nation, known as the Hyksos, invaded Egypt and slowly took control both militarily and politically. The Hyksos people introduced to Egyptians the horse, chariot and modern Bronze Age weapons.
Image Credit: wikicommons – Riding through the Land of Goshen page 419 from the book “Egypt painted and described” (1902) Kelly, Robert Talbot, 1861-1934
This post has been written jointly with Living in the Kingdom blog.