1. Why was the Lord going to bring the prince of Tyrus “down to the pit”?
He was lifted up with pride: “(1) The word of the LORD came again unto me, saying, (2) Son of man, say unto the prince of Tyrus, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Because thine heart is lifted up, and thou hast said, I am a God, I sit in the seat of God, in the midst of the seas; yet thou art a man, and not God, though thou set thine heart as the heart of God: (3) Behold, thou art wiser than Daniel; there is no secret that they can hide from thee: (4) With thy wisdom and with thine understanding thou hast gotten thee riches, and hast gotten gold and silver into thy treasures: (5) By thy great wisdom and by thy traffick hast thou increased thy riches, and thine heart is lifted up because of thy riches: (6) Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Because thou hast set thine heart as the heart of God; (7) Behold, therefore I will bring strangers upon thee, the terrible of the nations: and they shall draw their swords against the beauty of thy wisdom, and they shall defile thy brightness. (8) They shall bring thee down to the pit, and thou shalt die the deaths of them that are slain in the midst of the seas” (Ezekiel 28:1-8).
- Ezekiel had MANY separate times wherein he receives revelation from God. The phrase likened to the beginning of this chapter is often repeated in the book (Ezekiel 11:14; 12:26, 14:12; 16:1, 18:1, 21:8, 21:18. 23:1; 24:1; 25:1; 27:1; 28:20; 30:1; 33:1; 37:15).
- “Before destruction the heart of man is haughty, and before honour is humility” (Proverbs 18:12; cf. Proverbs 11:2, Proverbs 16:18, and Proverbs 29:23).
- Pride is a heart problem (Mark 7:20-23).
- Like the king of Babylon (Isaiah 14:13-14 and Daniel 4:30-31) and Herod (Acts 12:21-24), the prince thought himself as a god. Emperor worship in the first century brought about such a mindset too (II Thessalonians 2:3-4).
- The prince had become so proud he thought himself wiser than Daniel, the prophet of God. That is a huge statement (Daniel 1:19-20).
- Their wisdom, that they thought so great, was misused to bring riches to their hurt (Zechariah 9:2-4; cf. Ecclesiastes 5:13-14).
- Wealth just increased their arrogance as is often the case (I Timothy 6:6-11 and Revelation 3:14-22).
- Therefore, God was going to bring strangers upon them to destroy their beauty (Isaiah 23:8-9).
- The phrase “down to the pit”, as it is used here, is in reference to death (cf. Psalms 30:3; 9, Proverbs 1:12, and Ezekiel 31:14).
2. What was death going to show the prince of Tryus?
That he was NOT God: “(9) Wilt thou yet say before him that slayeth thee, I am God? but thou shalt be a man, and no God, in the hand of him that slayeth thee. (10) Thou shalt die the deaths of the uncircumcised by the hand of strangers: for I have spoken it, saith the Lord GOD” (Ezekiel 28:9-10).
- The Lord was going to show him who have power as other kings were shown in times past (Daniel 4:31-32; 5:20-30).
- While the Lord does not work among men now as He did in times past, the days is coming when all of humanity will fall submissively before the Lord (Romans 14:11-12).
- The deaths of the uncircumcised is an obscure statement. Jeremiah helps a little (Jeremiah 9:25-26).
- By the hand of strangers (Jeremiah 25:9).
3. Could it have been said that the king of Tyrus was perfect?
Yes, until iniquity was found in him: “(11) Moreover the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, (12) Son of man, take up a lamentation upon the king of Tyrus, and say unto him, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Thou sealest up the sum, full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty. (13) Thou hast been in Eden the garden of God; every precious stone was thy covering, the sardius, topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, and the jasper, the sapphire, the emerald, and the carbuncle, and gold: the workmanship of thy tabrets and of thy pipes was prepared in thee in the day that thou wast created. (14) Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God; thou hast walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire. (15) Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee” (Ezekiel 28:11-15).
- In chapter 27 we saw the taking of a lamentation for Tyrus (Ezekiel 27:2; 32). Now it is for the king.
- The king, like the city (Ezekiel 27:3-4), was boastful of his wisdom, beauty, etc. That was foolish (Jeremiah 9:23-24).
- In Eden needs to be understood as a likened to figure (cf. Isaiah 51:3 and Joel 2:1-3). Imagery concerning the garden of Eden will continue in chapters to come (Ezekiel 31:1-9; 36:34-35).
- Like Israel, the king of Tyrus was all decked out (Ezekiel 16:11-13).
- While we do not know much about the kings of Tyre [Tyrus] since the days of David and Solomon, this tells us that this generation of kings were blessed by God. They were perfect, until they erred. All they would have had to do is to serve the Lord (Psalms 2:9-10). They knew right from wrong (Romans 2:12-15).
- By being referred to as “the anointed cherub that covereth” we can identify that the king of Tyrus had some role amongst God’s people as a protecter of some sort. In times past, they had equipped Solomon with a navy (I Kings 9:27).
4. Who was going to be astonished at the punishment of the king of Tyrus?
All they that knew them: “(16) By the multitude of thy merchandise they have filled the midst of thee with violence, and thou hast sinned: therefore I will cast thee as profane out of the mountain of God: and I will destroy thee, O covering cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire. (17) Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness: I will cast thee to the ground, I will lay thee before kings, that they may behold thee. (18) Thou hast defiled thy sanctuaries by the multitude of thine iniquities, by the iniquity of thy traffick; therefore will I bring forth a fire from the midst of thee, it shall devour thee, and I will bring thee to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold thee. (19) All they that know thee among the people shall be astonished at thee: thou shalt be a terror, and never shalt thou be any more” (Ezekiel 28:16-19).
- The king’s merchandise was gained sinfully, like Ephraim (Hosea 12:7-8).
- The fact that he had sinned, means they violated something God instructed (John 15:22 and I John 3:4).
- Success and empowerment has been a downfall of men (Isaiah 10:5-19).
- This punishment was for 70 years (Isaiah 23:15).
- When God was angry with the rulers of the world, He was “terrible” [dreadful] toward them (Psalms 76:10-12).
5. How violent was the judgement against Zidon going to be?
Pestilence, blood in the streets, the sword on every side: “(20) Again the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, (21) Son of man, set thy face against Zidon, and prophesy against it, (22) And say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, O Zidon; and I will be glorified in the midst of thee: and they shall know that I am the LORD, when I shall have executed judgments in her, and shall be sanctified in her. (23) For I will send into her pestilence, and blood into her streets; and the wounded shall be judged in the midst of her by the sword upon her on every side; and they shall know that I am the LORD” (Ezekiel 28:20-23).
- Zidon is said to be an ancient Phoenician city, on Mediterranean coast north of Tyre. The Scriptures fit that (Joel 3:4).
- Consider that God humbling these proud nations would show His might among them (Isaiah 5:15-16).
- As with Israel, God sent various forms of physical suffering and death (Jeremiah 15:2).
6. Who was going to benefit from the removal of Zidon?
Israel: “And there shall be no more a pricking brier unto the house of Israel, nor any grieving thorn of all that are round about them, that despised them; and they shall know that I am the Lord GOD” (Ezekiel 28:24).
- No more a pricking thorn unto Israel for the Lord’s pattern is that He would ultimately defend His people against their unlawful enemies for His name’s sake (Psalms 83:1-18).
7. Who was going to be gathered and allowed to dwell in safety?
Israel: “(25) Thus saith the Lord GOD; When I shall have gathered the house of Israel from the people among whom they are scattered, and shall be sanctified in them in the sight of the heathen, then shall they dwell in their land that I have given to my servant Jacob. (26) And they shall dwell safely therein, and shall build houses, and plant vineyards; yea, they shall dwell with confidence, when I have executed judgments upon all those that despise them round about them; and they shall know that I am the LORD their God” (Ezekiel 28:25-26).
- This is the promise we have been discussing in this book and in Jeremiah (Jeremiah 20:1-14 and Ezekiel 20:40-41).