The Lord is going to destroy the Phoenician port city, Tyre, because they rejoiced over the fall of Jerusalem, thinking that they would profit from Jerusalem’s destruction. The Lord speaks of the riches of Tyre and all the nations that do business with Tyre. Therefore, when Tyre is destroyed, many nations will mourn because it will impact them financially. The Lord says, “You satisfied many people; you enriched the kings of the earth with your many luxury goods and your merchandise. But you are broken by the seas in the depths of the waters; your merchandise and the entire company will fall in your midst. All the inhabitants of the isles will be astonished at you.”
Possessing wealth and power means nothing apart from a relationship with the Lord. The people of Tyre are secure in their material possessions which leads them to believe that they are gods. The Lord says, “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.”
Many commentators believe the Lord’s rebuke to the King of Tyre goes further than rebuking an earthly king to actually describing Satan whom the Lord created in perfection, wisdom and beauty; but fell because of pride – “You were the seal of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty. You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone was your covering: The sardius, topaz, and diamond, beryl, onyx, and jasper, sapphire, turquoise, and emerald with gold. The workmanship of your timbrels and pipes was prepared for you on the day you were created. You were the anointed cherub who covers; I established you; you were on the holy mountain of God; you walked back and forth in the midst of fiery stones. You were perfect in your ways from the day you were created, till iniquity was found in you. By the abundance of your trading you became filled with violence within, and you sinned; therefore I cast you as a profane thing out of the mountain of God.”
Satan is the father of lies who comes to steal, kill and destroy (John 8:44, John 10:10). However, Satan has already been defeated. The Lord expelled Satan from heaven as a profane thing and ultimately Satan will be cast in a lake of fire for eternity (Revelation 20:10). But until then, Satan is out to devour as many souls as possible. That is why later in the story Peter is going to say, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you. To Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.”
The reading ends with the fall of Jerusalem. “By the ninth day of the fourth month the famine had become so severe in the city that there was no food for the people of the land.” The Chaldeans break through the city wall and instead of surrendering to Babylonians as the Lord had instructed, the men of war and the king flee. “But the army of the Chaldeans pursued the king, and they overtook him in the plains of Jericho. All his army was scattered from him. So they took the king and brought him up to the king of Babylon at Riblah, and they pronounced judgment on him. Then they killed the sons of Zedekiah before his eyes, put out the eyes of Zedekiah, bound him with bronze fetters, and took him to Babylon.”
Meanwhile, Jeremiah is still stuck in prison. Keep reading.
(Ezekiel 26:15-28:26, 2 Kings 25:3-7, Jeremiah 52:6-11, Jeremiah 39:2-10)