Mike Curtiss (19 Nov 2010)
"Satan The Prince and King of Tyre and Mammon"

 

SATAN - THE PRINCE
AND KING OF TYRE

      Ezekiel 28:1-10 [1] The word of the LORD came to me: [2] "Son of man, say to the ruler [most translations: prince] of Tyre, `This is what the Sovereign LORD says: "`In the pride of your heart you say, "I am a god; I sit on the throne of a god in the heart of the seas." But you are a man and not a god, though you think you are as wise as a god. [3] Are you wiser than Daniel? Is no secret hidden from you? [4] By your wisdom and understanding you have gained wealth for yourself and amassed gold and silver in your treasuries. [5] By your great skill in trading you have increased your wealth, and because of your wealth your heart has grown proud. [6] "`Therefore this is what the Sovereign LORD says: "`Because you think you are wise, as wise as a god, [7] I am going to bring foreigners against you, the most ruthless of nations; they will draw their swords against your beauty and wisdom and pierce your shining splendor. [8] They will bring you down to the pit, and you will die a violent death in the heart of the seas. [9] Will you then say, "I am a god," in the presence of those who kill you? You will be but a man, not a god, in the hands of those who slay you. [10] You will die the death of the uncircumcised at the hands of foreigners. I have spoken, declares the Sovereign LORD.'"

   (Note that these excerpts are actually consecutive.)

      Ezekiel 28:11-19 [11] The word of the LORD came to me: [12] "Son of man, take up a lament concerning the king of Tyre and say to him: `This is what the Sovereign LORD says: "`You were the model of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty. [13] You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone adorned you: ruby, topaz and emerald, chrysolite, onyx and jasper, sapphire, turquoise and beryl. Your settings and mountings were made of gold; on the day you were created they were prepared. [14] You were anointed as a guardian cherub, for so I ordained you. You were on the holy mount of God; you walked among the fiery stones. [15] You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created till wickedness was found in you. [16] Through your widespread trade you were filled with violence, and you sinned. So I drove you in disgrace from the mount of God, and I expelled you, O guardian cherub, from among the fiery stones. [17] Your heart became proud on account of your beauty, and you corrupted your wisdom because of your splendor. So I threw you to the earth; I made a spectacle of you before kings. [18] By your many sins and dishonest trade you have desecrated your sanctuaries. So I made a fire come out from you, and it consumed you, and I reduced you to ashes on the ground in the sight of all who were watching. [19] All the nations who knew you are appalled at you; you have come to a horrible end and will be no more.'"

   To whom do these remarkable passages refer?

   Verses 1-10 refer at least primarily to the prince of Tyre then reigning, Ittiobalus by name, according to Josephus. They were fulfilled in the siege of Tyre by Nebuchadnezzar.

   Tyre was a great seafaring, naval, and financial power, the Wall Street of its time. Its core was on a highly fortified island, which made it practically impervious to attack. Ultimately, Alexander the Great completed the conquest of Tyre by taking rubble from the ruins of the mainland construction and using it to build a road to the island so his armies could mount a sustained assault on the fortifications.

   Verses 11-19 have expressions which it is difficult, if not impossible, to refer to any mere man, e.g., verses 12-14. There are however, other verses that seem to indicate an earthly kingdom, e.g., 16 and 18.

   What is the explanation of this enigma?

   We frequently find in prophecy that the prophet is borne on from speaking of a contemporaneous event to some event of the last times, of which the contemporaneous event is in some respects a type.