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Bible Commentaries
Ezekiel 28

Utley's You Can Understand the BibleUtley Commentary


Ezekiel 28:0


Oracles Against the Nations(Ezekiel 25:1-32)
Oracles Against Tyre(Ezekiel 26:1-19)
Tyre's King OverthrownProclamation Against the King of TyreOracle Against TyreProphecy Against the King of TyreAgainst the King of Tyre
Ezekiel 28:1-10Ezekiel 28:1-10Ezekiel 28:1-10Ezekiel 28:1-5Ezekiel 28:1-10
(vv. Ezekiel 28:2-5)(vv. Ezekiel 28:2-5)(vv. Ezekiel 28:2-10)(vv. Ezekiel 28:2-5)
(vv. Ezekiel 28:6-10)(vv. Ezekiel 28:6-10Ezekiel 28:6-10(vv. Ezekiel 28:6-10)
Lamentation for the King of TyreLamentation Over the King of TyreThe Fall of the King of TyreThe Fall of the King of Tyre
Ezekiel 28:11-19Ezekiel 28:11-19Ezekiel 28:11-19Ezekiel 28:11-19Ezekiel 28:11-19
(vv. Ezekiel 28:12-19)(vv. Ezekiel 28:12-13)(vv. Ezekiel 28:12-19)(vv. Ezekiel 28:12-19)
(vv. Ezekiel 28:14-15)
(vv. Ezekiel 28:16)
(vv. Ezekiel 28:17-19)
Judgment on SidonProclamation Against SidonOracle Against SidonProphecy Against SidonAgainst Sidon
Ezekiel 28:20-24Ezekiel 28:20-23Ezekiel 28:20-23Ezekiel 28:20-23Ezekiel 28:20-23
(vv. Ezekiel 28:22-23)(vv. Ezekiel 28:22-23)(vv. Ezekiel 28:22-23)(vv. Ezekiel 28:22-23)
Restoration of IsraelIsrael Will Be BlessedIsrael Delivered From the Nations
Ezekiel 28:24Ezekiel 28:24Ezekiel 28:24Ezekiel 28:24
Israel RegatheredIsrael's Future Blessing
Ezekiel 28:25-26Ezekiel 28:25-26Ezekiel 28:25-26Ezekiel 28:25-26Ezekiel 28:25-26

READING CYCLE THREE (see “Guide to Good Bible Reading”)


This is a study guide commentary which means that you are responsible for your own interpretation of the Bible. Each of us must walk in the light we have. You, the Bible, and the Holy Spirit are priority in interpretation. You must not relinquish this to a commentator.

Read the chapter in one sitting. Identify the subjects (reading cycle #3). Compare your subject divisions with the four modern translations above. Paragraphing is not inspired, but it is the key to following the original author's intent, which is the heart of interpretation. Every paragraph has one and only one subject.

1. First paragraph

2. Second paragraph

3. Third paragraph

4. Etc.


A. Ezekiel 28:0 is part of a larger literary unit (i.e., Ezek. 26-28), which denotes the fall of Phoenicia.

B. Phoenicia, once a friend of Israel (i.e., supplied materials for the temple), became a pagan empire exporting Ba'al worship (i.e., Jezebel, queen of Ahab, cf. 1 Kings 16:29-34; 18-19).

C. Phoenicia (like Edom) was a godless nation. Her pride and slave trade made her an example of human society functioning apart from God.

D. For many years I saw this chapter and Isaiah 14:0 as referring to Satan, but in context this cannot be. It is true that human leaders and Satan share the problem of pride, arrogance, and rebellion. Because the descriptions from the Garden of Eden are also used of the person of chapter 28, it is obvious to me this was the only passage in the Bible that described the fall of Satan.

But wait, this chapter is about the king of Tyre, as Isaiah 14:0 is about the king of Babylon. Yet, what about the Garden of Eden descriptions? The king of Tyre was not in the Garden of Eden; he was not a covering cherub!

The answer to this quandary came home to me when I realized that Pharaoh is also described in Garden of Eden metaphors in Ezekiel 31:0. Ezekiel uses Edenic metaphors. Because I am a conservative Christian who honors and respects Scripture, without even thinking about it, I assumed that for it to be true it must be “literal.” I have come to realize it is “literary.” Here are the two books that have helped me deal with my American, twentieth century, conservative biases.

1. How to Read the Bible For All Its Worth by Gordon Fee and Doug Stuart

2. Plowshares and Pruning Hooks: Rethinking the Language of Biblical Prophecy and Apocalyptic by D. Brent Sandy

Authorial intent, literary and historical context, and genre are the keys in interpreting the Bible!

Verses 1-10

NASB (UPDATED) TEXT: Ezekiel 28:1-10 1The word of the LORD came again to me, saying, 2”Son of man, say to the leader of Tyre, 'Thus says the Lord GOD, “Because your heart is lifted up And you have said, 'I am a god, I sit in the seat of gods In the heart of the seas'; Yet you are a man and not God, Although you make your heart like the heart of God 3Behold, you are wiser than Daniel; There is no secret that is a match for you. 4By your wisdom and understanding You have acquired riches for yourself And have acquired gold and silver for your treasuries. 5By your great wisdom, by your trade You have increased your riches And your heart is lifted up because of your riches 6Therefore thus says the Lord GOD, 'Because you have made your heart Like the heart of God, 7Therefore, behold, I will bring strangers upon you, The most ruthless of the nations. And they will draw their swords Against the beauty of your wisdom And defile your splendor. 8They will bring you down to the pit, And you will die the death of those who are slain In the heart of the seas. 9Will you still say, “I am a god,” In the presence of your slayer, Though you are a man and not God, In the hands of those who wound you? 10You will die the death of the uncircumcised By the hand of strangers, For I have spoken!' declares the Lord GOD!”'“

Ezekiel 28:1 “say to the leader of Tyre” At this time the leader of Tyre was Ittobaal, who had been the High Priest of Astarte and who assassinated the heir of Hiram I. Hiram's daughter was Jezebel, who was married to Ahab, king of Israel. Sennacherib appointed a later descendant, Ittobaal II (also known as Ethbaal II and Ithobalus II), king of Tyre (590-543 B.C.).

Tyre was the capital of the Phoenician empire. Tyrians were extremely arrogant because of their commercial prowess and their kings claimed to be descendants of the gods. This was also the claim of the Pharaohs of Egypt.

This section has caused great consternation to commentators. It seems to refer to a human king, but is described in supernatural terms (cf. Isaiah 14:12-20). It is possible that Isaiah 14:0 refers to a military power that has gone beyond the bounds of pride and Ezekiel 28:0 refers to a commercial power that has gone beyond the bounds of pride (cf. Ezekiel 28:2, Ezekiel 28:9, Ezekiel 28:16).

“Because your heart is lifted up” See Special Topic at Ezekiel 11:19.

“is lifted up” This VERB (BDB 146, KB 170, Qal PERFECT) can have two senses.

1. positive

a. God, Isaiah 5:16

b. Messiah, Isaiah 52:13

c. God's ways, Isaiah 55:9

d. God's true followers, 2 Chronicles 17:6

2. negative

a. 2 Chronicles 26:16; 2 Chronicles 32:25

b. Psalms 131:1 (the psalmist asserts he is not)

c. Proverbs 18:12

d. Isaiah 3:16

e. Jeremiah 13:15

f. Ezekiel 16:50; Ezekiel 28:2, Ezekiel 28:5, Ezekiel 28:17

g. Zephaniah 3:11

3. the NOUN is also used of haughty people

a. 2 Chronicles 32:26

b. Psalms 10:4

c. Proverbs 16:18

d. Jeremiah 48:29

4. as is the ADJECTIVE

a. 1 Samuel 2:3

b. Psalms 101:5; Psalms 138:6

c. Proverbs 16:5

d. Ecclesiastes 7:8

e. Isaiah 5:15

The major problem of mankind (and some angels) is pride (cf. Ezekiel 16:49; Ezekiel 24:21; Ezekiel 27:3; Ezekiel 28:2-6, Ezekiel 28:9, Ezekiel 28:17; Genesis 3:5; Isaiah 10:12; Isaiah 14:13, Isaiah 14:14; Isaiah 23:8-12; Isaiah 25:11-12; Jeremiah 48:29-30; Daniel 2-4, esp. Daniel 4:29-30; Zephaniah 2:8-11; Zephaniah 3:11; 1 Timothy 3:6). Notice the Proverbs that deal with this sin: Ezekiel 11:2; Ezekiel 13:10; Ezekiel 16:18; 29:23.

I think pride, arrogance, and self-centeredness are the epitome of the attitude of independence and self-achievement, which characterizes the fall of Genesis 3:0. Salvation is a restoration of the image and likeness of God (Genesis 1:26-27) from the original creation. Intimate fellowship with God, for which humans were created, is possible again, even now in a fallen world. The evidence that salvation/conversion has occurred is that the new creation is selfless, not self-centered. Selflessness is analogous to Christlikeness, which is God's irreducible will for every Christian!

“I am a god” Also see Ezekiel 28:6 and 9. This possibly reflects the kings of Tyre's (esp. Ittbaal II) claims that they were part god, like Hercules. Tyre's chief deity, Melqart (i.e., “king of the city”) was called the Tyrian Hercules.

“I sit in the seats of the gods” This phrase is parallel with the next one. It is possibly a reference to Poseidon or Neptune.

“In the heart of the seas” Tyre's unique physical location was a source of security and pride.

“Yet you are a man and not God” Because of this phrase, repeated three times for emphasis in Ezekiel 28:4, Ezekiel 28:8, and 9, it is obvious that this refers to the political leader of Tyre as representative of the whole nation. This would not fit Satan at all! But it might fit the political leader of 1 Thessalonians 2:4 (i.e., the Man of Lawlessness or the Antichrist).

Ezekiel 28:3 “you are wiser than Daniel” To whom does this refer? Daniel, who was a contemporary of Ezekiel in the palace of Nebuchadnezzar, or to the famous Ugarit Danel of the Ugaritic Rash Shamra texts. See note at Ezekiel 14:14. When all is said and done, I still must go with Daniel of the Bible, but it is not an easy choice. The name “Daniel” here is spelled differently than the name “Daniel” in the biblical book. See note at BDB 193, #3 and #4.

There is an obvious purposeful literary allusion to Genesis 1-3 in this chapter. The wisdom of the tree of knowledge (cf. Genesis 2:9, Genesis 2:17; Genesis 3:3, Genesis 3:11) here denotes commercial skills (cf. Ezekiel 28:3-5). It was a wisdom that destroyed!

Notice all the different terms used in Ezekiel 28:3-10.

1. wiser than Daniel, ADJECTIVE, BDB 314

2. no secret hidden (cf. Daniel 8:26; Daniel 12:4, Daniel 12:9)

3. wisdom, BDB 315

4. understanding, BDB 108

5. great wisdom, BDB 913, 315

6. the beauty of your wisdom, BDB 421, 315

7. possibly “splendor” (BDB 422) is parallel to wisdom in Ezekiel 28:7

Number 2 is obviously sarcasm (cf. E. W. Bullinger, Figures of Speech in the Bible, p. 810) or all are a series of self-descriptions.

Ezekiel 28:4 “wisdom. . .acquired riches” There seem to be three sources of the arrogance of the Tyrian people: (1) wisdom; (2) power and wealth; and (3) beauty (cf. Ezekiel 28:5, Ezekiel 28:17; Ezekiel 27:3, Ezekiel 27:4, Ezekiel 27:10-11, Ezekiel 27:25).

Ezekiel 28:7 “strangers” The term (BDB 266, KB 267, Qal PARTICIPLE) refers to foreign invaders (cf. Isaiah 1:7; Isaiah 25:2, Isaiah 25:5; Isaiah 29:5; Isaiah 61:5; Jeremiah 5:19; Jeremiah 30:8; Jeremiah 51:2, Jeremiah 51:51; Lamentations 5:2; Ezekiel 7:21; Ezekiel 11:9; Ezekiel 16:32; Ezekiel 28:7, Ezekiel 28:10; Ezekiel 30:12; Ezekiel 31:12) who worship foreign (i.e., “strange”) gods (cf. Deuteronomy 32:16; Isaiah 17:10; Jeremiah 2:25; Jeremiah 3:13; Jeremiah 5:19).

“most ruthless of nations” Here this (BDB 792, lit. “terror-striking”) refers to the Babylonians (cf. Ezekiel 30:11; Ezekiel 31:12; Ezekiel 32:12; Isaiah 13:11). Nebuchadnezzar besieged the island fortress for over a decade and destroyed the city on the mainland (cf. Ezekiel 26:3-14; Habakkuk 1:6-8). Apparently the island fortress finally surrendered.

Ezekiel 28:8 “the pit” See Special Topic: The Dead, Where Are They? (Sheol/Hades, Gehenna, Tartarus).

“you will die the death of” This verse is referring to drowning (cf. Ezekiel 27:27, Ezekiel 27:34). Remember Tyre is depicted as a beautiful, expensive cargo ship in chapter 27, which is destroyed by God's east wind and sinks with all cargo and all hands.

Ezekiel 28:9 “Will you still say” The shocking claim to deity is emphasized in the Hebrew by a repetition of the Qal INFINITIVE ABSOLUTE and the IMPERFECT VERB of the same root, “say” (BDB 55, KB 65).

Ezekiel 28:10 “the death of the uncircumcised” Since all peoples of Canaan practiced circumcision, mostly at puberty, this must refer to something else (cf. Ezekiel 31:18; Ezekiel 32:19, Ezekiel 32:21).

1. uncircumcised people were thought to be residents of the lowest part of the underworld

2. a special category of the dead, like the unburied, possibly referring to children who died before puberty

The term “death” is PLURAL, which denotes an awful death.

“‘For I have spoken!' declares the Lord GOD” God's word is sure (cf. Ezekiel 5:17; Ezekiel 6:10; Ezekiel 12:25, Ezekiel 12:28; Ezekiel 17:24; Ezekiel 21:32; Ezekiel 22:14; Ezekiel 24:14; Ezekiel 26:5, Ezekiel 26:14; Ezekiel 30:12; Ezekiel 34:24; Ezekiel 36:36; Ezekiel 37:14; Ezekiel 39:5, Ezekiel 39:8)!

Verses 11-19

NASB (UPDATED) TEXT: Ezekiel 28:11-19 11Again the word of the LORD came to me saying, 12”Son of man, take up a lamentation over the king of Tyre and say to him, 'Thus says the Lord GOD, “You had the seal of perfection, Full of wisdom and perfect in beauty. 13You were in Eden, the garden of God; Every precious stone was your covering: The ruby, the topaz and the diamond; The beryl, the onyx and the jasper; The lapis lazuli, the turquoise and the emerald; And the gold, the workmanship of your settings and sockets, Was in you. On the day that you were created They were prepared. 14You were the anointed cherub who covers, And I placed you there. You were on the holy mountain of God; You walked in the midst of the stones of fire. 15You were blameless in your ways From the day you were created Until unrighteousness was found in you. 16By the abundance of your trade You were internally filled with violence, And you sinned; Therefore I have cast you as profane From the mountain of God. And I have destroyed you, O covering cherub, From the midst of the stones of fire. 17Your heart was lifted up because of your beauty; You corrupted your wisdom by reason of your splendor. I cast you to the ground; I put you before kings, That they may see you. 18By the multitude of your iniquities, In the unrighteousness of your trade You profaned your sanctuaries. Therefore I have brought fire from the midst of you; It has consumed you, And I have turned you to ashes on the earth In the eyes of all who see you. 19All who know you among the peoples Are appalled at you; You have become terrified And you will cease to be forever.”'“

Ezekiel 28:11 This is a new oracle, marked by the repeated literary marker “the word of the LORD came to me saying.”

Ezekiel 28:12 “lamentation” This is a funeral dirge, noted by a unique poetic beat. It is common in Ezekiel (cf. Ezekiel 2:10; Ezekiel 19:1, Ezekiel 19:14; Ezekiel 26:17; Ezekiel 27:2, Ezekiel 27:32; Ezekiel 28:12; Ezekiel 32:2, Ezekiel 32:16). See note at Ezekiel 2:10.

“the king of Tyre” This (BDB 572) is parallel to Ezekiel 28:2, “leader” (lit. “prince,” BDB 617 only here in Ezekiel; only once in Isaiah 55:4 and Jeremiah 20:1).

Ezekiel 28:13-15 There seems to be a series of statements that go beyond the possibility of a mere human king.

1. the seal of perfection, Ezekiel 28:12

2. full of wisdom and beauty, Ezekiel 28:12

3. in the Garden of Eden, Ezekiel 28:13

4. clothed with colored/gems, Ezekiel 28:13

5. an anointed cherub who covers, Ezekiel 28:14, Ezekiel 28:16

6. in God's presence on God's mountain, Ezekiel 28:14

7. blameless, Ezekiel 28:15

Could this be the first true mention of Satan and his origin (see Origen, Tertullian, and Jerome)? All believers want more information about the origin and purpose of evil, see Special Topic: Personal Evil. However, this would be a strange context (i.e., God's judgment on surrounding nations) to be the only revelation on this subject. Pride and arrogance are characteristics of this fallen reality. YHWH judges pride! Ezekiel uses hyperbolic language from the Garden of Eden, not only here related to the king of Tyre, but also in chapter 31, related to Pharaoh, king of Egypt. See Contextual Insights, D.

Ezekiel 28:13 “Every precious stone was your covering” This seems to be an allusion to the ephod (i.e., breastplate) of the High Priest (cf. Exodus 28:17, Exodus 28:20; Exodus 39:10-14). Although the Masoretic Text lists only nine jewels, the Septuagint lists all twelve (sometimes the LXX reflects the more ancient text). The king of Trye is symbolized as

1. priestly

2. kingly

3. wealthy

“settings and sockets” The MT has “tambourines” (BDB 1074, KB 1772, both say this is a textual corruption).

Sockets (BDB 666, refers to a jeweler's work of boring a hole, see KJ, NKJV, ASB, JB. The NOUN is used only two times. The VERB means “piercing” or “boring').

“On the day that you were created” It is assumed that the angelic realm is created (cf. Ezekiel 28:15; Psalms 104:4). Biblical faith is not an eternal dualism like Zoroastrianism, but the Bible is silent on when, how, and why. The Bible focuses on humans on this planet.

The two phrases “on the day that you were created” (cf. Ezekiel 28:15) and “I placed you there” (cf. Ezekiel 28:14) denote the authority and sovereignty of YHWH. Satan has no independent existence. He acts at YHWH's permission (cf. 1 Kings 22:19-28; Job 1-2; Zechariah 3:0).


Ezekiel 28:14 “the anointed cherub” The term “anointed” (BDB 603, KB 596) is found only here in the OT. Its meaning is uncertain. Here are some theories.

1. cherub of expansion (BDB)

2. cherub that covereth

3. cherub with far-reaching wings

4. cherub of sparkling (i.e., “to illuminate,” KB)

The LXX has “with the Cherubim,” not one of them.

Cherubim are involved in several aspects of OT history.

1. they guard the Garden of Eden after mankind's fall, Genesis 3:24

2. they face inward on the Mercy Seat, the place of propitiation, Exodus 25:8; Psalms 80:1; Psalms 99:0; Isaiah 37:16

3. they form YHWH's throne chariot, 2 Samuel 22:13; Psalms 18:10; Ezekiel 1:10

The descriptions in Ezekiel 1:5-28 and Ezekiel 10:15-20 are similar to Revelation 4:6-9. However, Revelation does seem to blend the Cherubim with the Seraphim of Isaiah 6:0. See Special Topic: CHERUBIM.

“You were on the holy mountain of God” This is a different metaphor from the Garden of Eden (Ezekiel 28:13). This refers either to Mount Sinai (cf. Exodus 19-20; Ezekiel 20:40) or to the mountain in the north where God dwells (cf. Ezekiel 28:16; Psalms 48:2; Isaiah 14:13-14, similar to Ugaritic Ba'al poetry). Note that Psalms 50:2 uses similar descriptions of Mt. Zion (i.e., “perfect in beauty,” cf. Ezekiel 28:12).

It was common in Ancient Near Eastern religious thought to view the gods as living on mountain tops (cf. Gilgamesh Epic). This is especially true for the Ugaritic Ba'al myth poems from Ras Shamra. The gods met and lived on a northern mountain called Saphon or Zaphon. Ba'al had a throne there built by Anath. The male god of Phoenician fertility worship was called Baal Saphon. This name has been found in Phoenician colonies around the Mediterranean. This northern mountain tradition, totally unrelated to Israel's holy Mt. Moriah (cf. Ezekiel 20:40), seems to be the source of the imagery of both Isaiah 14:13-15 and Ezekiel 28:14, Ezekiel 28:16. See Roland de Vaux, Ancient Israel, vol. 2, pp. 279-281.

“the stones of fire” This (BDB 6 construct BDB 77) can be translated “glittering gems.” Some commentators try to link these with the jewels of Ezekiel 28:13, but that is a different metaphorical setting. This fire may be associated with God's personal presence (cf. Exodus 3:2; Exodus 13:21, Exodus 13:22; Exodus 14:24; Exodus 19:18; Exodus 24:17; Deuteronomy 1:33; Deuteronomy 4:11, Deuteronomy 4:12, Deuteronomy 4:15, Deuteronomy 4:24, Deuteronomy 4:33, Deuteronomy 4:36; Deuteronomy 9:3).

Ezekiel 28:15 “blameless” This is a sacrificial term (BDB 1071) for “unblemished” (e.g., Ezekiel 43:22). Here the term denotes an original innocence. Humans were not created sinful, but “good” (cf. Genesis 1:31). Evil was an invader of original creation (cf. Genesis 3:0). This phrase relates to Ezekiel 28:12-13. We learn from

1. Ezekiel 28:17 that pride corrupted original innocence and wisdom (see note at Ezekiel 28:3)

2. Ezekiel 28:18 that unfair and violent trade practices (cf. Ezekiel 28:16) brought God's judgment

Hyperbole and history are mixed together for powerful poetry.

Ezekiel 28:16 “by the abundance of your trade” Obviously this is a reference to the historical king of Tyre (cf. Ezekiel 28:18).

“Therefore I cast you as profane From the mountain of God” Notice YHWH's sovereign judgment. The term “profane” (BDB 320, KB 319) means “polluted” and “defeated.” This is a priestly word that Ezekiel uses often (32 times).

Note that this is not the same metaphor (i.e., Garden of Eden) as Ezekiel 28:13. This refers to a northern holy mountain.

NASB, NKJV, REB“covering cherub” NRSV, NIV“the guardian cherub” TEV“the angel who guarded” NJB“guardian winged creature” JPSOA“shielding cherub” LXX“the cherub brought thee out”

The FEMININE NOUN is found only here. The MASCULINE form means “covering” or “screen” (i.e., used of the screens of the tabernacle, cf. Exodus 22:16; Exodus 35:17; Exodus 38:18; Exodus 39:40; Exodus 40:8, Exodus 40:33; Numbers 3:26), so it could denote one close to “the forgiving” God (i.e., the Ark).

The term (BDB 697 I) also denotes YHWH covering with His wings as a metaphor for protection. The cherub protected the Garden of Eden in Genesis 3:24 or more probably the angel protects the tree of life from Adam and Eve, lest they eat from it in the spiritual condition in which they find themselves (i.e., estrangement from God). So in this sense the cherub protects mankind from itself!

I must admit I am attracted to the Septuagint's understanding that the referent in this poetry is to Adam, who was escorted out of the Garden by a cherub (cf. James Moffatt translation and Edgar J. Goodspeed's translation of Ezekiel 28:14, “I placed you with the guardian Cherubim on the holy hill of God”).

Ezekiel 28:17 “I cast you to the ground; I put you before kings” This again stresses the sovereignty of God (cf. Ezekiel 28:18). The mention of kings may

1. be an allusion to Ezekiel 26:16 (Tyre's trading partners, cf. Ezekiel 28:19)

2. be an allusion to the multi-national mercenary army of Babylon

Number 1 fits the context best.

Also note that the first phrase could be translated “I cast you to the earth,” implying a fall from heaven (i.e., God's mountain), but probably it is a metaphor of rejection.

Ezekiel 28:18 “You profaned your sanctuaries” The TEV has “You did such evil in buying and selling that your places of worship were corrupted.” This is the only Bible text that uses “profane” in connection with a pagan sanctuary. One cannot separate life and worship!

Verses 20-24

NASB (UPDATED) TEXT: Ezekiel 28:20-24 20And the word of the LORD came to me saying, 21”Son of man, set your face toward Sidon, prophesy against her 22and say, 'Thus says the Lord GOD, “Behold, I am against you, O Sidon, And I will be glorified in your midst. Then they will know that I am the LORD when I execute judgments in her, And I will manifest My holiness in her. 23For I will send pestilence to her And blood to her streets, And the wounded will fall in her midst By the sword upon her on every side; Then they will know that I am the LORD. 24And there will be no more for the house of Israel a prickling brier or a painful thorn from any round about them who scorned them; then they will know that I am the Lord GOD.”

Ezekiel 28:20-24 This is the judgment against Sidon, another Phoenician city linked with Tyre.

Ezekiel 28:21 As Ezekiel 28:2 starts out with a command “say” (BDB 55, KB 65,Qal IMPERATIVE), so too, this judgment starts with two commands.

1. Set your face against, BDB 962, KB 1321, Qal IMPERATIVE, cf. Ezekiel 6:2; Ezekiel 13:7; Ezekiel 15:7; Ezekiel 20:46; Ezekiel 21:2; Ezekiel 29:2; Ezekiel 35:2; Ezekiel 38:2

2. Prophesy, BDB 612, KB 659, Niphal IMPERATIVE, cf. Ezekiel 4:7; Ezekiel 11:4; Ezekiel 13:17; Ezekiel 25:2; Ezekiel 29:2; Ezekiel 34:2; Ezekiel 35:2; Ezekiel 36:6; Ezekiel 38:2; Ezekiel 39:1

Ezekiel 28:22

NASB, NKJV, LXX, PESHITTA“I shall be glorified” NRSV, JPSOA, NIV“I will gain glory” NJB, REB“I will show My glory”

Ezekiel is all about the glory of YHWH! The glory is for the purpose of revelation. YHWH wants the people of Phoenicia to know Him. Judgment is an instrument of revelation (i.e., “I shall manifest My holiness in her,” cf. Ezekiel 28:25). He is always acting for the redemption of those created in His image and likeness!

Verses 25-26

NASB (UPDATED) TEXT: Ezekiel 28:25-26 25'Thus says the Lord GOD, “When I gather the house of Israel from the peoples among whom they are scattered, and will manifest My holiness in them in the sight of the nations, then they will live in their land which I gave to My servant Jacob. 26They will live in it securely; and they will build houses, plant vineyards and live securely when I execute judgments upon all who scorn them round about them. Then they will know that I am the Lord their GOD.”'“

Ezekiel 28:25, Ezekiel 28:26 The prophet again speaks of the hope of the restored people, the restored temple, and the restored covenant (cf. Ezekiel 11:17-20; Ezekiel 20:40-44). After the fall of Jerusalem and the destruction of the temple, Ezekiel's message changed to one of restoration. He even illustrates the New Covenant concept in Ezekiel 36:22-38. A new day is dawning!

Ezekiel 28:26 “They will live in it securely. . .live securely” This term “securely” (BDB 105) is repeated for emphasis. It reflects YHWH's earlier promises (cf. Leviticus 25:18, Leviticus 25:19; Leviticus 26:5; Psalms 4:8; Jeremiah 23:5-6; Jeremiah 32:37; Ezekiel 34:25-28; Ezekiel 38:8, Ezekiel 38:11, Ezekiel 38:14; Ezekiel 39:26; Zechariah 14:11).


This is a study guide commentary, which means that you are responsible for your own interpretation of the Bible. Each of us must walk in the light we have. You, the Bible, and the Holy Spirit are priority in interpretation. You must not relinquish this to a commentator.

These discussion questions are provided to help you think through the major issues of this section of the book. They are meant to be thought-provoking, not definitive.

1. Why was God so angry at Tyre?

2. Did Tyre ever fall to Nebuchadnezzar II?

3. What is a cherub?

4. Does the chapter describe the fall of Satan? Why or why noy?

Bibliographical Information
Utley. Dr. Robert. "Commentary on Ezekiel 28". "Utley's You Can Understand the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/ubc/ezekiel-28.html. 2021.
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