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Bible Commentaries

Nisbet's Church Pulpit Commentary

Ezekiel 26

Verse 4


‘I will … make her like the top of a rock.’

Ezekiel 26:4

Eleven years after the carrying away of Jehoiachin—i.e. the year after the fall of Jerusalem, and whilst Tyre was rejoicing over the fall of the Hebrew capital—Ezekiel set forth her sin, her doom, the instruments by which she would be punished, and the effect produced by her downfall.

I. She was the great trading centre of the old world, what Venice was in the Middle Ages, and Liverpool or New York is to-day. She thought that she would greatly profit by the fall of Jerusalem, but instead, under the terrible siege and assault of Nebuchadnezzar, her site would become as bare as it was before her mighty buildings, marts, and harbours were constructed. The towns and villages dependent on her (‘her daughters’) would share her fate. When this prophecy was uttered, nothing seemed less probable than that Tyre should fall before any attack, for she had already withstood the powerful armies of Assyria, and there was every reason to think she would resist those of Babylon; but the Divine purpose must stand.

II. So all earthly greatness, however stable it may seem, must pass away.—The things which excite men’s ambition and cupidity shall perish with the using, and God will set glory only in the land of the living. In this case that phrase must refer to the Hebrew people, who should have Jehovah as a wall of fire and His glory in their midst ( Zechariah 2:5). But in its further scope the words surely refer to those who are numbered in the Book of Life, and shall reign with Christ when the works of human pride have vanished like the morning mist.

III. We have to suffer for our sins.—Every step that we take over flowers along the forbidden path, we have to retrace, but the flowers have turned to hot ashes. The way of transgressors is hard, and the very people and circumstances that were associated with the pleasures of sin become the scorpion whips by which we are scourged back to the forsaken path. The ancients believed in Nemesis; and the Gospel does not hesitate to utter the same warning note, that every man must reap as he has sown. Let man or woman sin with a confederate, he or she will be the sure curse and sorrow of after life, unless by some special providence God shall interpose.

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Bibliographical Information
Nisbet, James. "Commentary on Ezekiel 26". Nisbet's Church Pulpit Commentary. 1876.