Woe to the rebellious children, saith the LORD, that take counsel, but not of me; and that cover with a covering, but not of my spirit, that they may add sin to sin: That walk to go down into Egypt, and have not asked at my mouth; to strengthen themselves in the strength of Pharaoh, and to trust in the shadow of Egypt! Therefore shall the strength of Pharaoh be your shame, and the trust in the shadow of Egypt your confusion. For his princes were at Zoan, and his ambassadors came to Hanes. They were all ashamed of a people that could not profit them, nor be an help nor profit, but a shame, and also a reproach. The burden of the beasts of the south: into the land of trouble and anguish, from whence come the young and old lion, the viper and fiery flying serpent, they will carry their riches upon the shoulders of young asses, and their treasures upon the bunches of camels, to a people that shall not profit them. For the Egyptians shall help in vain, and to no purpose: therefore have I cried concerning this, Their strength is to sit still.
The rebellious children were the politicians of Judah, who made a agreement with Egypt against Assyria. Since there was no record of such an alliance, we are justified in thinking of this as still in the future. Judah will learn that Egypt is not worthy of trust. Caravans are seen carrying tribute from Judah to Egypt, through dangerous areas in the Negeb, located in the South, but though the Jewish envoys get as far as Zoan and Hanes, the whole project is doomed to failure. God calls Egypt “Rahab-Hem-Shebeth”, Rahab who sits still.