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doms and people, it is God who directs and prospers them. This consideration should induce us not to make any earthly thing our glory; but trust in the divine protection and promises; for they, and they alone, are sure.
2. The principal instruction to be drawn from the whole chap ter is, that God is greatly displeased with those who rejoice in the afflictions of others; not merely with those who revenge themselves, but those also who take pleasure in the sufferings of others. His controversy with all these countries was because they helped forward and triumphed in the desolations of Israel. When persons bear a grudge against their neighbours, hate their rivals in trade, endeavour to do them an injury, and rejoice when they meet with losses and disappointments, and say, Ah, so would we have it; it shows a most spiteful, malignant, and diabolical spirit; especially when they impute their calamities to divine judgments. Persons of this hellish disposition forget that the cup of affliction goes its round, and may soon be put into their hands. The stroke of divine vengeance will come with double force on those who have avenged themselves; and he that is glad at calamities shall not go unpunished.
The prophecy beginning here, and ending at the 20th verse of chap. xxviii. foretells the destruction of Tyre, which was taken nineteen years after by Nebuchadnezzar, after a siege of thirteen years.
1 ND it came to pass in the eleventh year, in the first
2 unto me, saying, Son of man, because that Tyrus hath said against Jerusalem, Aha, she is broken [that was] the gates of the people: she is turned unto me: I shall be replenished, 3 [now] she is laid waste:* Therefore, thus saith the Lord
GOD; Behold, I [am] against thee, O Tyrus, and will cause many nations to come up against thee, as the sea causeth his waves to come up; as the sea rolls its waves against thee, so shall the army of Nebuchadnezzar come with irresistible force. 4 And they shall destroy the walls of Tyrus, and break down
her towers: I will also scrape her dust from her, and make 5 her like the top of a rock. It shall be [a place for] the
Tyre was in alliance with Jerusalem, yet, from a selfish principle rejoiced in its de. struction, concluding that there would be greater resort to, and a greater trade with herself; Jerusalem is called the gates of the people, because it was a populous place, and there was a great resort of proselytes and strangers there, especially at the feasts.
This denotes the great rage with which the city should be attacked; that her buildings should be entirely destroyed, and she left bare as a rock; which was literally accomplished, when the rubbish was afterwards carried away by Alexander, to make a Causeway to attack new Tyre, which stood on an island.
spreading of nets in the midst of the sea: for I have spoken [it,] saith the Lord God: and it shall become a spoil to the na6 tions. And her daughters which [are] in the field, the towns and cities, and the coasts that belong to her, shall be slain by the sword; and they shall know that I [am] the LORD.
7 For thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will bring upon
down all thy streets: he shall slay thy people by the sword, 12 and thy strong garrisons shall go down to the ground. And they shall make a spoil of thy riches, and make a prey of thy merchandise and they shall break down thy walls, and des troy thy pleasant houses and they shall lay thy stones and 13 thy timber and thy dust in the midst of the water.* And I will cause the noise of thy songs to cease; and the sound of 14 thy harps shall be no more heard. And I will make thee like the top of a rock: thou shalt be [a place] to spread nets upon thou shalt be built no more: for I the LORD have spoken [it,] saith the Lord GOD.†
Thus saith the Lord GoD to Tyrus; Shall not the isles, the neighbouring isles, or a maritime country called isles, shake at the sound of thy fall, as neighbouring ground shakes when some large building falls, when the wounded cry, when the 16 slaughter is made in the midst of thee? Then all the princes
of the sea shall come down from their thrones, either the
Tyre was a city abounding in riches and luxuries, which the enemies should throw into the sea; or rather, it is a prophecy of the use which Alexander should make of
+ Tyre was famous after this time, but it was new Tyre, not that against which judg ment is here denounced. Maundrel tells us, that there are scarce any remains of old Tyre, there are no entire houses, only a few pillars, and some old vaults which are inhabited by fishermen, who spread their nets upon the rocks. It was strange that Nebuchadnezzar should destroy so beautiful, so well situated, and flourishing a city, which might have been very advantageous to him: but the siege of the place had been, very troublesome; he was thirteen years about it, had wasted vast treasures, and lost great numbers of his men; and when he entered the city, the inhabitants had gone off by sea, with all their valuable ef fects; at which he was so much enraged, that he utterly destroyed it, and so fulfilled the word of the Lord.
that live like frinces, and lay away their robes, and put off their broidered garments: they shall clothe themselves with trembling; they shall sit upon the ground, and shall tremble 17 at [every] moment, and be astonished at thee. And they shall take up a lamentation for thee, and say to thee, How art thou destroyed [that wast] inhabited of seafaring men, the renowned city which wast strong in the sea, by thy situation, trade, and naval force, she and her inhabitants, which cause their terror [to be] on all that haunt it! on all who frequent the sea, having lost their trade with them, and being apprehensive 18 of danger to themselves. Now shall the isles tremble in the
day of thy fall; yea, the isles that [are] in the sea shall be 19 troubled at thy departure. For thus saith the Lord GOD; When I shall make thee a desolate city, like the cities that are not inhabited; when I shall bring up the deep upon thee, and great waters shall cover thee; (its destruction is compared 20 to a shipwreck ;) When I shall bring thee down with them that descend into the pit, with the people of old time, who are dead and forgotten; or, like the old world, which was destroyed by water; or, like Sodom, which was sunk in the dead sea; and shall set thee in the low parts of the earth, in places desolate of old, with them that go down to the pit, that thou be not inhabited; and I shall set glory in the land of the living; that is, restore Israel, and appoint glory to that land, though it be less taken notice of, and its destruction less regarded than theirs; 21 but I will make thee a terror, or terrors, and thou [shalt be] no [more] though thou be sought for, yet shalt thou never be found again in so flourishing a condition as formerly, saith the Lord GOD,
ET me repeat the admonition given in the last chapter, That to be pleased with the ruin or decay of others, because we are likely to gain by it, is a very wicked temper. Tyre had no hatred to Jerusalem, as other nations had, on account of their religion; but considered them as rivals in trade; and rejoiced in Jerusalem's destruction as their gain. It is to be feared that many, and some who profess religion too, are of this disposition. They say, I shall be replenished now he is dead, or laid waste. This shows a very criminal love of the world; a want of love to our neighbour; and a mean, selfish, wretched spirit; and justly may God blast those who hope to flourish by the sufferings of others.
2. This chapter gives an awful warning to Great Britain. Like the Tyrians, we are strong in the sea, in situation, extensive trade, and naval force. But the strongest situation, the greatest traffic, or naval power, cannot secure a country, when God gives
an enemy a commission against it. Thus can he bring us down, and make other nations, our allies and correspondents, tremble at the fall. Let us then not be high minded, but fear: do our part to ensure the favour of heaven, by advancing that righteousness which will be our greatest excellency, and our surest defence.
3. When God brings destruction on those who hate his people, he has glory in reserve for them. They may suffer and be afflicted, like others; may be hated and despised; but God intends glory to them; glory in heaven, which is properly the land of the living; for there shall be no more death. It will add unspeakable terror to the miserable creatures who are gone down to the pit of destruction, to see the glory which those possess, whom they injured, reproached, and contemned. Let God's people rejoice in hope of this glory; and let all choose rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than enjoy the pleasures of sin, which are but for a season.
This chapter continues the prophecy of the ruin of Tyre: as it was common for mourners at funerals first to proclaim the excellencies, and then to lament the loss of the deceased, so the prophet here, first celebrates the beauty, wealth and glory of Tyre; and then declares its irrecoverable fall. He could be supposed to know but little of the trade of Tyre himself; yet he minutely describes it; which, among others, is a plain proof of his inspiration.
HE word of the LORD came again unto me, saying, Now, thou son of man, take up a lamentation for Ty3 rus; And say unto Tyrus, O thou that art situate at the entry of the sea, at the east end of the Mediterranean, called the Levant, [which art] a merchant of the people for many isles, that is, countries on the sea shore, Thus saith the Lord GOD; O Tyrus, thou hast said, I [am] of perfect beauty; wanting nothing to make the nations ambitious of my friendship, and to 4 establish a free trade with me. Thy borders [are] in the midst
of the seas, thy builders, especially the builders of ships, have 5 perfected thy beauty. They have made all thy [ship] boards,
the decks, cabins, and state rooms, of fir trees of Senir: they have taken cedars from Lebanon, to make masts for thee. 6 [Of] the oaks of Bashan have they made thine oars; the company of the Ashurites have made thy benches [of] ivory, [brought] out of the isles of Chittim; or, of box tree have they made thy benches, inlaid with ivory, brought from some 7 parts about the Mediterranean sea. Fine linen with broidered
work from Egypt was that which thou spreadest forth to be thy sail, or rather, for thy flags: blue and purple from the isles of Elishah, from the Peloponnesus, was that which covered thee; or, the awning spread over part of thy ships. The inhabitants of Zidon and Arvad were thy mariners: thy wise 9 [men,] O Tyrus, [that] were in thee, were thy pilots. The ancients of Gebal, and the wise [men] thereof, were in thee thy calkers, to stop leaks and repair what was amiss; all the ships of the sea with their mariners were in thee to occupy 10 thy merchandise. They of Persia and of Lud and of Phut
were in thine army, thy men of war: they hanged the shield and helmet in thee; they set forth thy comeliness, thy pomp 11 and splendor. The men of Arvad with thine army [were] upon thy walls round about, and the Gammadims, either a people of Phenicia, or, in general, guards were in thy towers; they hanged their shields upon thy walls round about; they 12 have made thy beauty perfect. Tarshish, or Spain, which was
anciently remarkable for silver mines, [was] thy merchant by reason of the multitude of all [kind of] riches; with silver, 13 iron, tin, and lead, they traded in thy fairs. Javan, or Greece, and Tubal, and Meshech, the sons of Japheth, ( Gen. x. 2.) who dwelt about mount Caucasus, they [were] thy merchants: they traded the persons of men, traded in slaves, (which is branded by St. Paul as highly criminal, 1 Tim. i. 10.) and ves14 sels of brass in thy market. They of the house of Togar
mah traded in thy fairs with horses and horsemen and mules. 15 The men of Dedan [were] thy merchants; many isles [were]
the merchandise of thine hand: they brought thee [for] a 16 present horns of ivory and ebony. Syria [was] thy merchant
by reason of the multitude of the wares of thy making; the Tyrians did not neglect their own manufactures for foreign trade, they were remarkable for fine purple; they occupied in thy fairs with emeralds, purple, and broidered work, and fine 17 linen, and coral, and agate. Judah and the land of Israel, they [were] thy merchants: they traded in thy market wheat of Minnith and Pannag; Minnith lay in a valley in Canaan, that produced excellent wheat; though it was a small tract of country, and had a multitude of inhabitants, and the land lay untilled every seventh year, yet such an extraordinary blessing attended it, that it could export wheat, and honey, and oil, and 18 balm. Damascus [was] thy merchant in the multitude of
the wares of thy making, for the multitude of all riches; in 19 the wine of Helbon, or Aleppo, and white wool. Dan also and Javan going to and fro, occupied in thy fairs: bright iron, 20 cassia, and calamus were in thy market. Dedan [was] thy 21 merchant in precious clothes for chariots. Arabia, and all
the princes of Kedar, they occupied with thee in lambs, and