Tyre is the capital of Phoenicia, just north of Israel. Part of their city was on the coastline and part was on a beautiful island. Judgment came to Tyre because when Judah and Jerusalem fell, they no longer were in competition for the trade that came through and they rejoiced and gloated. Nebuchadnezzar attacked the city, but it took him 15 years because the city’s back side lay on the sea, so fresh supplies could be shipped daily.
The Destruction of Tyre
Verse 1 – “And it came to pass in the eleventh year, on the first day of the month, that the word of the Lord came to me, saying,
Verse 2 – “Son of man, because Tyre has said against Jerusalem, ‘Aha! she is broken who was the gateway of the peoples; now she is turned over to me; I shall be filled; she is laid waste.’
Verse 3 – “Therefore thus says the Lord God: ‘Behold, I am against you, O Tyre, and will cause many nations to come up against you, as the sea causes its waves to come up.
Verse 4 – ‘And they shall destroy the walls of Tyre and break down her towers; I will also scrape her dust from her, and make her like the top of a rock.
Alexander the Great built a causeway to the city and finally destroyed Tyre in 332 B.C., thus Ezekiel’s prophecy was fulfilled. After the Romans became the dominant world power, they rebuilt Tyre, sort of.
Even though this message came to Ezekiel in 586 B.C. and many years had passed, it still was true. Sometimes judgment is a long way off in the future, but that doesn’t mean it’s not going to come. From the beginning, God’s word tells of His Kingdom and the Messiah coming to rule and reign the earth. We don’t know the day or the hour, but it will come to pass. We are not to be slack in well dong, but keep looking for His return.
Verse 5 – ‘It shall be a place for spreading nets in the midst of the sea, for I have spoken,’ says the Lord God; ‘it shall become plunder for the nations.
It was not until Tyre’s conquest by Alexander the Great that this prophecy was fulfilled and all the villages were slaughtered by the sword.
Verse 6 – ‘Also her daughter villages which are in the fields shall be slain by the sword. Then they shall know that I am the Lord.’
Verse 7 – “For thus says the Lord God: ‘Behold, I will bring against Tyre from the north Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, king of kings, with horses, with chariots, and with horsemen, and an army with many people.
Verse 8 – ‘He will slay with the sword your daughter villages in the fields; he will heap up a siege mound against you, build a wall against you, and raise a defense against you.
Verse 9 – ‘He will direct his battering rams against your walls, and with his axes he will break down your towers.
Verse 10 – ‘Because of the abundance of his horses, their dust will cover you; your walls will shake at the noise of the horsemen, the wagons, and the chariots, when he enters your gates, as men enter a city that has been breached.
Verse 11 – ‘With the hooves of his horses he will trample all your streets; he will slay your people by the sword, your strong pillars will fall to the ground.
Verse 12 – ‘They will plunder your riches and pillage your merchandise; they will break down your walls and destroy your pleasant houses; they will lay your stones, your timber, and your soil in the midst of the water.
Verse 13 – ‘I will put an end to the sound of your songs, and the sound of your harps shall be heard no more.
Verse 14 – ‘I will make you like the top of a rock; you shall be a place for spreading nets, and you shall never be rebuilt, for I the Lord have spoken,’ says the Lord God.
Alexander threw the rubble of the mainland city into the sea until it made a bridge to the island. Then he marched across the bridge and destroyed the island in 332 B.C. Today the island city is still a pile of rubble, a testimony God’s judgment.
Verse 15 – “Thus says the Lord God to Tyre: ‘Will the coast-lands not shake at the sound of your fall, when the wounded cry, when slaughter is made in the midst of you?
Verse 16 – ‘Then all the princes of the sea will come down from their thrones, lay aside their robes, and take off their embroidered garments; they will clothe themselves with trembling; they will sit on the ground, tremble every moment, and be astonished at you.
Verse 17 – ‘And they will take up a lamentation for you, and say to you: “How you have perished, O one inhabited by seafaring men, O renowned city, who was strong at sea, she and her inhabitants, who caused terror to be on all her inhabitants!
Verse 18 – Now the coast-lands tremble on the day of your fall; yes, the coast-lands by the sea are troubled at your departure.” ‘
Verse 19 – “For thus says the Lord God: ‘When I make you a desolate city, like cities that are not inhabited, when I bring the deep upon you, and great waters cover you,
Verse 20 – ‘then I will bring you down with those who descend into the Pit, to the people of old, and I will make you dwell in the lowest part of the earth, in places desolate from antiquity, with those who go down to the Pit, so that you may never be inhabited; and I shall establish glory in the land of the living.
The land of the living – the land of the true God, as opposed to the land of the dead, to which is gathered the glory of the world. The overthrow of God’s enemies shall be accompanied by the establishment of His true Kingdom, where Jesus Christ rules and reigns.
Verse 21 – ‘I will make you a terror, and you shall be no more; though you are sought for, you will never be found again,’ says the Lord God.”
This is literally true. There is not the smallest vestige of the ancient Tyre, that which was erected on the main land. Even the ground seems to have been washed away.