Isaiah – Chapter 23

isaiah-chapter-23

I’ve noticed, not many of you are reading these prophecies of Isaiah. I can’t stress enough how important Bible prophecy is to us all. I know it doesn’t matte to most about all these nations that God used to judge His people, but as things play out in our history today, they do matter. Your going to miss out if you don’t get back into reading a chapter a day to learn how God dealt with His chosen people. Israel has a very large part to play in these last days and I believe we are about to see these prophecies come true. It’s the best way we can learn of God’s magnificent character and just how much He loves us.

Prophecies Against Tyre

Verse 1 – The burden against Tyre. Wail, you ships of Tarshish! For it is laid waste, so that there is no house, no harbor; from the land of Cyprus it is revealed to them.

Isaiah’s prophecies against other nations began in the east with Babylon and ended in the west with Tyre in Phoenicia. Tyre was one of the most famous cities of the ancient world. Tyre was a major trading center with a large seaport. Tyre was as wealthy as it was evil. It was rebuked by Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Joel, Amos, and Zechariah.

Verse 2 – Be still, you inhabitants of the coast-land, you merchants of Sidon, whom those who cross the sea have filled. (Sidon was another trade port, north of Tyre.)

Verse 3 – And on great waters the grain of Shihor, the harvest of the River, is her revenue; and she is a marketplace for the nations. (Short is a name for the Nile valley. Egypt was well-known for its export of grain.)

verse 4 – Be ashamed, O Sidon; for the sea has spoken, the strength of the sea, saying, “I do not labor, nor bring forth children; neither do I rear young men, nor bring up virgins.”

Verse 5 – When the report comes to Egypt, they will be in agony at the report of Tyre.

Egypt would be in agony when Tyre falls because Egypt would lose its trading partner.

Verse 6 – Cross over to Tarshish; wail, you inhabitants of the coast-land!

Verse 7 – Is this your joyous city, whose antiquity is from ancient days, whose feet carried her far off to sojourn?

Verse 8 – Who has taken this counsel against Tyre, the crowning city, whose merchants are princes, whose traders are the honorable of the earth?

Does this remind you of any great city in America? How about New York City, Wall street? What happened after 9/11, to the New York Stock exchange? What happened to the markets? Disaster! And then five years later the Housing market fell because of all the wheeling and dealing from our government officials. Who suffered the most? Surely not the government officials, but the people who had been swindled out of their homes. That’s why these verses sound so familiar to me, because history does repeat itself when “evil” is in charge!

Verse 9 – The Lord of hosts has purposed it, to bring dishonor the pride of all glory, and to bring into contempt all the honorable of the earth.

Self pride is detestable to God. Tyre did not honor God with the prosperity He had brought them. Watch out when you think you have arrived.

Verse 10 – Overflow through your land like the River, O daughter of Tarshish; there is no more strength.

Just as the Nile would overflow annually with water, Tarshish would overflow now with refugees from the destroyed cities of the Phoenician coast-land.

Verse 11 – He stretched out His hand over the sea, He shook the kingdoms; the Lord has given a commandment against Canaan to destroy the strongholds.

Verse 12 – And He said, “You will rejoice no more, O you oppressed virgin daughter of Sidon. Arise, cross over to Cyprus; there also you will have no rest.”

Verse 13 – Behold, the land of the Chaldean’s this people which was not; Assyria founded it for wild beasts of the desert, they set up its towers, they raised up its places, and brought it to ruin.

Verse 14 – Wail, you ships of Tarshish! For your strength is laid waste.

Verse 15 – Now it shall come to pass in that day that Tyre will be forgotten seventy years, according to the days of one king. At the end of seventy years it will happen to Tyre as in the song of the harlot:

Verse 16 – “Take a harp, go about the city, you forgotten harlot; make sweet melody, sing many songs, that you may be remembered.”

This seventy years could be the time when Babylon took Israel into captivity and when they returned, they again traded with Tyre.

Verse 17 – And it shall be, at the end of seventy, years, that the Lord will visit Tyre. She will return to her pay, and commit fornication with all kingdoms of the world on the face of the earth.

Verse 18 – Her gain and her pay will be set apart for the Lord; it will not be treasured nor laid up, for her gain will be for those who dwell before the Lord, to eat sufficiently, and for fine clothing.

In other words: Her merchandise and her hire (pay) shall be holiness to Jehovah. It shall not be treasured nor laid up; for her merchandise shall be for them that dwell before Jehovah, to eat sufficiently, and for durable clothing. At the end they will be charitable to the support and encouragement of the ministries of holy things.

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