9/9/17 “The Lifted Up Heart” (Daily Bible Reading: Ezekiel 26-28)

“Therefore thus says the Lord God: ‘Because you have set your heart as the heart of a god, behold, therefore, I will bring strangers against you, the most terrible of the nations; and they shall draw their swords against the beauty of your wisdom, and defile your splendor. They shall throw you down into the Pit, and you shall die the death of the slain In the midst of the seas” (Ezekiel 28:6-8).

After bringing His terrible Judgment upon Jerusalem, now, through Ezekiel, God pronounces His judgments against the surrounding nations. He begins with the city of Tyre. The Phoenician city of Tyre was located on the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea. Due to its advantageous geographical location and its good ports, Tyre became one of the wealthiest trading cities in history. The city also was situated in a location that offered excellent protection for its inhabitants. 

Tyre had rejoiced over the destruction of Jerusalem at the hands of the Babylonians because she thought this would result in her gaining even more wealth as additional traders would come to her. Regarding Tyre’s rejoicing over the downfall of Israel’s capital city, God told Ezekiel, “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’ ” (Ezekiel 26:2). Furthermore, Tyre had trusted in her beauty as she said, “I am perfect in beauty” (Ezekiel 27:3). Tyre thought so highly of herself, she even viewed herself as a god. God further instructed Ezekiel regarding Tyre’s spiritual condition, “Son of man, say to the prince of Tyre, 'Thus says the Lord God: "Because your heart is lifted up, and you say, 'I am a god, I sit in the seat of gods, in the midst of the seas,' Yet you are a man, and not a god, Though you set your heart as the heart of a god” ’ ” (Ezekiel 28:2).

Tyre was a city full of pride. Her arrogance was so great she even though of herself as a “god”. God would bring down this prideful city and would show her who really was God. Ezekiel writes, “Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying, Son of man, set your face toward Sidon, and prophesy against her, and say, “Thus says the Lord God: ‘Behold, I am against you, O Sidon; I will be glorified in your midst; and they shall know that I am the Lord, when I execute judgments in her and am hallowed in her’ ” ’ ” (Ezekiel 28:20-22). In bringing judgment against Tyre, God would be glorified! King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon would begin to destroy Tyre, but was unsuccessful (Ezekiel 29:18). It would be many years later, but Alexander the Great of Greece would eventually destroy Tyre and fulfill God’s prophecy against her: “ ‘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" (Ezekiel 26:21).

As I consider the ancient city of Tyre, I am reminded how tempting it is for all of us to become ensnared in the sin of pride. As men and women, our world encourages us to take pride in our physical looks, our achievements, and our wealth. Even though we know we should give glory to God for His blessings, many of us struggle wanting a little glory for ourselves. However, I am reminded of the warning words of wisdom by King Solomon: “Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall” (Proverbs 16:18). Today, I will learn from the city of Tyre the terrible consequences of the sin of pride and will strive to walk humbly giving God all the glory He deserves!

“Oh, love the Lord, all you His saints! For the Lord preserves the faithful, and fully repays the proud person” (Psalm 31:23).

To take a closer look at Tyre and her destruction as prophesied by Ezekiel, I recommend the reading at the following link: https://www.apologeticspress.org/apcontent.aspx?category=13&article=1790