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Friday, November 20 2015
Ezekiel 27: Tyre's World Trade Center
"Tyrus, O thou that art situate at the entry of the sea, which art a merchant of the people for many isles"
The Phoenicians were an ancient Semitic people of the "Fertile Crescent" (see Israel's Journeys Along The Fertile Crescent) who became one of the greatest trade and commerce nations of all time. One of their major commercial cities was Tyre, a city on the coast of Lebanon, just north of the border with Israel's Galilee (see Tyre's Island In The Sea). As we will read, Tyre was a free port of world trade, with ships and land traders converging on Tyre from Asia, Europe and Africa - literally all of the known world of the time.
"27:1 The word of the LORD came again unto me, saying,
With its location as a major port of the Mediterranean Sea, positioned at the point where the continental landmasses of Europe, Asia and Africa joined, Tyre truly was a world trade center to which all nations looked to do business with, and through, Tyre.
"27:12 Tarshish was thy merchant by reason of the multitude of all kind of riches; with silver, iron, tin, and lead, they traded in thy fairs.
Tyre's fall came for two reasons. It became arrogant toward those who had made it great ("28:1 The word of the LORD came again unto me, saying, 28:2 Son of man, say unto the prince of Tyrus, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Because thine heart is lifted up, and thou hast said, I am a God, I sit in the seat of God, in the midst of the seas; yet thou art a man, and not God, though thou set thine heart as the heart of God" Ezekiel 28:1-2 KJV) and it became hostile to the Kingdom of Judah by benefiting Judah's enemies through trade. The result was that when the LORD permitted the Babylonian Empire to destroy the corrupt Kingdom of Judah (see Why Did Judah Fall To Babylon?), He also had the Babylonians destroy Tyre and its commercial power - so that it would not be a problem for Judah when it returned seventy years later.
The world wept for the fall of Tyre because of what they lost for themselves - after having made the city great through their convergence of trade at Tyre. They went from "When thy wares went forth out of the seas, thou filledst many people; thou didst enrich the kings of the earth with the multitude of thy riches and of thy merchandise" to "And in their wailing they shall take up a lamentation for thee, and lament over thee, saying, What city is like Tyrus, like the destroyed in the midst of the sea?"
"27:25 The ships of Tarshish did sing of thee in thy market: and thou wast replenished, and made very glorious in the midst of the seas. 27:26 Thy rowers have brought thee into great waters: the east wind hath broken thee in the midst of the seas. 27:27 Thy riches, and thy fairs, thy merchandise, thy mariners, and thy pilots, thy calkers, and the occupiers of thy merchandise, and all thy men of war, that are in thee, and in all thy company which is in the midst of thee, shall fall into the midst of the seas in the day of thy ruin. 27:28 The suburbs shall shake at the sound of the cry of thy pilots. 27:29 And all that handle the oar, the mariners, and all the pilots of the sea, shall come down from their ships, they shall stand upon the land; 27:30 And shall cause their voice to be heard against thee, and shall cry bitterly, and shall cast up dust upon their heads, they shall wallow themselves in the ashes: 27:31 And they shall make themselves utterly bald for thee, and gird them with sackcloth, and they shall weep for thee with bitterness of heart and bitter wailing. 27:32 And in their wailing they shall take up a lamentation for thee, and lament over thee, saying, What city is like Tyrus, like the destroyed in the midst of the sea?
Fact Finder: As we read in Ezekiel 28:1-2 above, the king of Tyre became Satanically arrogant. Why was the prophecy and condemnation of him dual - why was it applied to Satan too?
This Day In History, November 20
762: During the An Shi Rebellion in China, forces of the Tang Dynasty, with the help of Huihe tribe, recaptured Luoyang from the rebels.
1194: Palermo, Sicily was conquered by the Holy Roman Emperor, German King Heinrich (in English, Henry) VI (see The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation).
1541: John Calvin, 32, established a religious government at Geneva, creating a center for growing Protestantism in Europe.
1759: In the Battle of Quiberon Bay during the Seven Years War, the British fleet with 23 warships under Admiral Hawke destroyed the French invasion fleet of 21 warships under Admiral Conflans.
1780: Britain declared war on the Netherlands after the Dutch had supplied French and Spanish arms to U.S. rebels (the Dutch were the colonial rulers of the colonies before Britain took them and renamed them "New England," while France and Spain both had colonies throughout North America, that they tolerated no independence for, while they at the same time supported the revolt of the English colonies against Britain).
1820: An 80-ton whale "attacked" the Essex, a whaling ship from Nantucket, Massachusetts. The peaceful whale (and members of its family) was actually the one being attacked by the whaling ship, thrashing about in great pain after being harpooned. The falsely-reported event was later used as the basis for the 1851 fictional novel Moby Dick (see also The Origin Of Moby Dick).
1873: In Hungary, the rival cities of Buda and Pest were joined to form the national capital - Budapest.
1910: Francisco Madero issued the Plan de San Luis Potosi that called for revolution against President Porfirio Diaz, thereby starting the Mexican Revolution.
1917: During the First World War (listen to our Sermon The European World Wars), 324 British tanks struck at the German lines in the Battle of Cambrai, France, the first major battle involving tanks. By the end of the battle, no gains had been made and the British lost 43,000 men.
1922: In Switzerland, the Lausanne Conference began to resolve differences between the allied powers after the First World War.
1923: During the inflation crisis in Germany, the Rentenmark replaced the Papiermark as the official currency. It had an initial exchange rate of one Rentenmark to one trillion Papiermarks.
1945: The war crime trials of 24 Nazi leaders began at Nuremberg, Germany. On the same day, the Allied Control Commission approved the transfer of 6,000,000 ethnic-Germans from Austria, Hungary and Poland back to West Germany.
1946: Alberta's oil boom began when the initial drilling was done at the famous Leduc well south of Edmonton.
1947: Princess Elizabeth (the future Queen Elizabeth II) married Philip Mountbatten, the Duke of Edinburgh, in Westminster Abbey.
1967: Lester Pearson, a Nobel Prize winner who would later become Prime Minister of Canada, was presented with the Medallion of Valour of the State of Israel for his efforts on behalf of Israel at the United Nations.
1977: Egyptian President Anwar Sadat addressed the Israeli Knesset. Sadat's visit made him the first Arab leader to officially visit Israel.
1980: Jiang Qing, widow of Mao Zedong, went on trial in China on charges of treason.
1985: Microsoft Windows 1.0 was released.
1992: A fire that burned for 15 hours before being brought under control severely damaged part of Windsor Castle in London.
1992: 20 paintings by Adolf Hitler (see Presidential Quotes On War, Terrorism, Religion) went unsold at an auction after they failed to receive a single bid.
1998: A Taliban court in Afghanistan declared terrorist leader Osama bin Laden to be "a man without a sin."
1998: The first module of the International Space Station was launched on a Russian Proton rocket from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.