Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Ezekiel-Chapter 28

Ezek 28.1-26 tells us about a prophecy concerning the king of Tyre and the causes of his ruin. It is in the form of a lamentation. It then goes on to reveal judgments against Sidon and concludes with a promise of restoration to the Jewish people back to their land in safety. It would be beneficial to read Ezek 26 and 27 first to give you a proper context of Ezek 28. Some interpret this chapter to mean that it is talking about Ha Satan, but we must be careful with that interpretation and not make the text say what it does not mean.

v 1…The word of the Lord came again to me saying,

v 2…”Son of man (Ezekiel is a mortal, human being and represents the people when this is used), say to the ruler (king) of Tyre (this was probably a man named Eth-baal meaning “with Baal”), ‘Thus says the Lord God (Adonai Yehovah), “Because your heart is lifted up (in pride) and you said, “I am a god, I sit in the seat of gods (a claim many heathen kings said, and Tyre was founded on glorified myths about being the foundation of all religions), in the heart of the seas (safe),” yet you are a man (a mortal “son of man”) and not God, although you make your heart like the heart of God (as if he was full of knowledge, power and wisdom and giving himself the honors that only belonged to Yehovah; this was the reason for his downfall).

v 3…Behold (see, take note), you are wiser than Daniel (in his own opinion, who was in the court of Babylon at this time): is there no secret that is a match for you (that they can hide from you).

v 4…By your wisdom and understanding you have acquired riches for yourself, and have acquired gold and silver for your treasuries (by his business ability).

v 5…By your great wisdom, by your trade you have increased your riches, and your heart is lifted up (in pride) because of your riches (the effect wealth has on people)-

v 6…Therefore (as a result), thus says the Lord God, ‘Because you have made your heart like the heart of God (as if he had all knowledge, power and wisdom and giving himself the honors that only belong to Yehovah),

v 7…Therefore, behold (take note), I will bring strangers upon you (Babylon), the most ruthless of the nations, and they will draw their swords against the beauty of your wisdom (all the things that made him “glorious” and the beauty of Tyre itself) and before your splendor (shining beauty and brightness).

v 8…They (Babylon) will bring you (the king) down to the pit, and you will die the death (Hebrew “deaths” because his death will be like dying many times; spiritual and physical) of the slain in the heart of the seas (waters-his death is like a mighty shipwreck-Ezek 27.4-9).

v 9…Will you still say, “I am a god” in the presence of your slayer (when the sword is at your throat), although you are a man and not God (can’t save yourself), in the hands of those of those who wound you?

v 10…You would die the death (deaths-spiritual and physical) of the uncircumcised (as an unbeliever because of his blasphemies) by the hand of strangers (Babylon), for I have spoken!” declares the Lord God.

v 11…Again the word of the Lord came to me saying,

v 12…”Son of man (mortal human being representing the people), take up a lamentation (mournful song) over the king of Tyre and say to him, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “You had the seal of a well-measured building (a building sealed by the king, meaning the Tyrian state government, he possessed the qualities needed to be king there), full of wisdom (as wise as the reason of man could make him) and perfect in beauty (in the eyes of man).

v 13…You were in Eden the garden of God (he lived in a paradise, ideal in beauty and advantages, like Adam in Eden before his fall. (Ezekiel will use Edenic imagery to describe the king of Tyre and comparing him to Adam. Tyre was pleasant and flourishing. Eden is also used in Ezek 31.9-18 when talking about other nations); every precious stone was your covering (on his crown and royal garments); the ruby, the topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, and the jasper, the lapis lazuli, the turquois, and the emerald, and the gold, the service of your timbrels and of your pipes (alludes to the women who beat their tambourines in circular dances, the harem-pomp of eastern kings) with you on the day that you were created (made king, ascended to the throne at his coronation; the harem of the previous king passed over into his hands) they were prepared (made ready and came into his possession).

v 14…You were the cherub of anointing which covered (anointed as king in a paradise to protect his people, cover them with his wings like in a sanctuary) and I (Yehovah) placed you there (as God’s representative to govern Tyre). You were on the holy mountain of God (the “seat of gods” in v 2 and the mountain he protected was the Tyrian government, this was from Yehovah); you walked in the midst of the stones of fire (a protective wall of fire that made the king of Tyre unapproachable).

v 15…You were blameless in your ways (like Adam at first, in his conduct and civil duties) from the day you were created (at his coronation) until unrighteousness was found in you (pride, corruption and blasphemy).

v 16…By the abundance of your trade (their commerce gave the king great power) you were internally filled with violence (the love of money caused him to violate human rights) and you sinned; therefore I have cast you as profane from the mountain of God (like Adam was when he sinned, he was deposed from his kingly position and power) and I have destroyed you, O covering cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire (Yehovah did not protect him and he was evicted from the palace).

v 17…Your heart was lifted up because of your beauty (he loved himself); you corrupted your wisdom by reason of your splendor (his earthly glory blinded his eyes from seeing things in their true perspective), I cast you to the ground (from your throne); I put you before kings that they may see you (as an example of God’s wrath and take warning).

v 18…By the multitude of your iniquities (corruption) in the unrighteousness of your trade (commerce) you profaned your sanctuaries (the temples that made Tyre a “holy” religious center, he profaned them by bringing about their destruction by his sins and arrogance). Therefore, I have brought fire from the midst of you (his pride was brought out from within him and it will burn him); it has consumed you and I have turned you to ashes on the earth (ground) in the eyes of all who see you (as an example and warning).

v 19…All who know you among the peoples are appalled at you (they wonder how this could have happened); you have become terrified and you will be no more (this was partly fulfilled by Nebuchadnezzar, and more completely with Alexander. Jerusalem will rise again to a new height of glory when Messiah comes, but Tyre, who rejoiced at the fall of Jerusalem, will never be built again).”

v 20…And the word of the Lord (Yehovah) came to me saying,

v 21…”Son of man, set your face (be determined) toward Sidon (hunting) and prophesy against her (now we have a prophecy about Sidon, who depended on Tyre and near to it, and a new hope for Israel),

v 22…and say, ‘Thus says the Lord God (Adonai Yehovah; Yehovah is written with the full vowels in the Aleppo Codex here), “Behold (see), I am against you, O Sidon, and I shall be glorified in your midst (by his judgments when he proves himself just against the wicked). Then they will know I am the Lord when I execute judgments in her (it will be proof that Yehovah has spoken).

v 23…For I shall send a pestilence to her and blood to her streets (plague and sword are two of God’s judgments), and the wounded will fall in her midst by the sword upon her from every side; then they will know that I am the Lord (proof that Yehovah is the true God because his predictions come true).

v 24…And there will be no more for the house of Israel a pricking brier or a painful thorn (an idiom for “enemies or annoyances” and this was used by Paul in 2 Cor 12.7) from any round about them who scorned them; then they will know that I am the Lord God.”

v 25…’Thus says the Lord God, “When I gather the house of Israel (all twelve tribes) from among the peoples among whom they are scattered (a future hope and a blessing on Israel), and shall manifest my holiness in them in the sight of the nations (because they are following the Torah), then they will live in the land which I gave to my servant Jacob.

v 26…And they will live in it securely (and no longer be afraid); and they will build houses, plant vineyards, and live securely, when I execute judgments upon all who scorn them round about them. Then they will know that I am the Lord their God (when it happens it will be proof that Yehovah has spoken).”

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Tying into the New Testament

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