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23. Prophecy About Tyre

The burden of Tyre. Howl, ye ships of Tarshish; for it is laid waste, so that there is no house, no entering in: from the land of Chittim it is revealed to them. 2Be still, ye inhabitants of the isle; thou whom the merchants of Zidon, that pass over the sea, have replenished. 3And by great waters the seed of Sihor, the harvest of the river, is her revenue; and she is a mart of nations. 4Be thou ashamed, O Zidon: for the sea hath spoken, even the strength of the sea, saying, I travail not, nor bring forth children, neither do I nourish up young men, nor bring up virgins. 5As at the report concerning Egypt, so shall they be sorely pained at the report of Tyre. 6Pass ye over to Tarshish; howl, ye inhabitants of the isle. 7 Is this your joyous city, whose antiquity is of ancient days? her own feet shall carry her afar off to sojourn. 8Who hath taken this counsel against Tyre, the crowning city, whose merchants are princes, whose traffickers are the honourable of the earth? 9The Lord of hosts hath purposed it, to stain the pride of all glory, and to bring into contempt all the honourable of the earth. 10Pass through thy land as a river, O daughter of Tarshish: there is no more strength. 11He stretched out his hand over the sea, he shook the kingdoms: the Lord hath given a commandment against the merchant city, to destroy the strong holds thereof. 12And he said, Thou shalt no more rejoice, O thou oppressed virgin, daughter of Zidon: arise, pass over to Chittim; there also shalt thou have no rest. 13Behold the land of the Chaldeans; this people was not, til the Assyrian founded it for them that dwell in the wilderness: they set up the towers thereof, they raised up the palaces thereof; and he brought it to ruin. 14Howl, ye ships of Tarshish: for your strength is laid waste. 15And it shall come to pass in that day, that Tyre shall be forgotten seventy years, according to the days of one king: after the end of seventy years shall Tyre sing as an harlot. 16Take an harp, go about the city, thou harlot that hast been forgotten; make sweet melody, sing many songs, that thou mayest be remembered.

17And it shall come to pass after the end of seventy years, that the Lord will visit Tyre, and she shall turn to her hire, and shall commit fornication with all the kingdoms of the world upon the face of the earth. 18And her merchandise and her hire shall be holiness to the Lord: it shall not be treasured nor laid up; for her merchandise shall be for them that dwell before the Lord, to eat sufficiently, and for durable clothing.

12. And he said, Thou shalt not add any more to rejoice. 112112     “And he said, Thou shalt no more rejoice.” Eng. Ver.
    FT370Sous des tentes de peaux;” — “Under tents of skins.”

    FT371 “They raised up the palaces thereof.” — Eng. Ver. “Erected her palaces.” — Stock. Professor Alexander renders it, “They have roused up her palaces;” but says, “According to the usual interpretation, the towers mentioned are those used in ancient sieges; the masculine suffix refers to עם, (gnām;) the feminine suffix to Tyre; and עורר (gnōrēr) may be taken either in the sense of raising, (from ערר, gnārăr,) or in that of rousing, (from עור, gnūr,) that is, filling with confusion and alarm.”

    FT372 “That is, of one kingdom. See Daniel 7:17 8:20. Nebuchadnezzar began his conquests in the first year of his reign: from thence to the taking of Babylon by Cyrus are seventy years; at which time the nations conquered by Nebuchadnezzar were to be restored to liberty.” — Lowth

    FT373Que le poete Horace s’est moqué d’une putain nommee Lydia pour la mesme occasion;” — “That the Poet Horace mocked at a prostitute named Lydia for the same reason.”

    FT374 “Tyre, after its destruction by Nebuchadnezzar, recovered, as is here foretold, its ancient trade, wealth, and grandeur; as it did likewise after a second destruction by Alexander. It became Christian early with the rest of the neighboring countries. St. Paul himself found many Christians there. (Acts 21:4.) It suffered much in the Diocletian persecution. It was an archbishopric under the patriarchate of Jerusalem, with fourteen bishoprics under its jurisdiction. It continued Christian till it was taken by the Saracens in 639; was recovered by the Christians in 1124; but in 1280 was conquered by the Mamalukes, and afterwards taken from them by the Turks in 1516. Since that time it has sunk into utter decay, is now a bare rock, ‘a place to spread nets upon,’ as the Prophet Ezekiel foretold it should be. (Ezekiel 26:14.) See Sandy’s Travels; Vitringa on the place; Bishop Newton on the Prophecies, Dissert. xi.” — Lowth

    FT375 “The revenues of Tyre shall be employed in supporting the worshippers of the true God. The prophecy intimates that Tyre should be converted to the religion of Christ as it was in the earliest times of the gospel. Of the same event David also had prophesied in Psalm 45:12; 72:10; 87:4.” — Stock

    FT376Afin qu’ils mangent leur saoul;” — “That they may eat their fill.”

    FT377Tout ce que nous employons pour la necessité de nos freres;” — “All that we spend for relieving the want of our brethren.”
All this belongs to one and the same object; for, since a plain description would not have had sufficient weight, the Prophet confirms his prediction by many words. It was incredible that a city so celebrated and powerful, so well defended and fortified, and associated with many allies and confederates, should be destroyed and overturned. When he says, Thou shalt not add, he does not intend to shut out the hope of restoration which he will give soon afterwards; for this threatening ought to be limited to the time of the ruin of Tyre, “Thou shalt not live wantonly, as formerly thou wert wont to do.”

O virgin. Metaphorically he calls her a virgin, because, previous to that time, the riches of Tyre were untouched, and had suffered no injury. This is not praise of chastity, but a witty manner of saying that the treasures which had been laid up in faithful custody will be violated. “Formerly thou didst skip lightly, like heifers in the bloom of youth; but when thou hast suffered violence, there will be an end of thy mirth;” just as if one should say, that the city of Venice has not lost her virginity because it has not been taken by force since it was built.

Daughter of Sidon. He continues to speak of Tyre, but gives it this name, because it was built by the Sidonians, though the daughter excelled the mother, as frequently happens in human affairs. The convenience and situation of the place gave a superiority to the inhabitants of Tyre, and Sidon became but an appendage. From the book of Kings it is evident enough (1 Kings 5:1) that the monarchy of Tyre had a high reputation, but here the Prophet looked at its origin.

Pass over to Chittim. When he bids them pass over to Chittim, he banishes them not only into Cilicia, but into countries still more distant; for under this name he includes Greece, Italy, and other countries; as if he had said, “When thou shalt change thy residence on account of banishment, thou shalt have no settled habitation in neighboring countries; but thou must wander through the whole world, shalt be dragged into unknown countries, and even there thou shalt find no rest.” Lastly, he means that the ruin will be so lamentable, that they will not have among neighbors, and, after crossing the sea, they will not have among foreigners, a place of rest.


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