From Ezekiel 28-30
I used to think this passage was speaking about the devil. Take a look and see why.
This post is part of my bible in a year series.
Passage and Comments
11 Moreover, the word of the Lord came to me: 12 “Son of man, raise a lamentation over the king of Tyre, and say to him, Thus says the Lord God:
“You were the signet of perfection,
full of wisdom and perfect in beauty.
13 You were in Eden, the garden of God;
every precious stone was your covering,
sardius, topaz, and diamond,
beryl, onyx, and jasper,
sapphire, emerald, and carbuncle;
and crafted in gold were your settings
and your engravings. (Eze 28.11-13a)
The LORD does address the statements to the King of Tyre. However the description given him says he was in the Garden of Eden. The early beginnings of the King are very good. Clothed in precious stones, wise and perfect in appearance.
13b On the day that you were created
they were prepared.
14 You were an anointed guardian cherub.
I placed you; you were on the holy mountain of God;
in the midst of the stones of fire you walked.
15 You were blameless in your ways
from the day you were created,
till unrighteousness was found in you. (Eze 28.13b-15)
The King is described as being created and anointed as a ‘guardian cherub’. my mum occasionally calls me a ‘Cherub’, it is a kind of angel. The king, described as an angel clothed in precious stones, was blameless for a time. If someone is described as ‘blameless’ it can mean they generally obey and the occasional sin is forgiven by some means such that they have no record of sin that can be held against them (cf. Phil 3.6). Here it means there was a time when he hadn’t sinned. But later he must have sinned because ‘unrighteousness was found’ in him.
16 In the abundance of your trade
you were filled with violence in your midst, and you sinned;
so I cast you as a profane thing from the mountain of God,
and I destroyed you, O guardian cherub,
from the midst of the stones of fire.
17 Your heart was proud because of your beauty;
you corrupted your wisdom for the sake of your splendor.
I cast you to the ground;
I exposed you before kings,
to feast their eyes on you.
18 By the multitude of your iniquities,
in the unrighteousness of your trade
you profaned your sanctuaries;
so I brought fire out from your midst;
it consumed you,
and I turned you to ashes on the earth
in the sight of all who saw you.
19 All who know you among the peoples
are appalled at you;
you have come to a dreadful end
and shall be no more forever.” (Eze 28.11-19)
The ‘devil’ fell from heaven. Ezekiel’s description sounds more like a nation now. Since it engages in trade. But still the imagery involving an angel in the garden persists. The cherub became proud of its own beauty and was corrupted.
What aspects about your life can lead you into sinful pride?
The king sinned more and more. Something had to be done. So he was destroyed, cast to the ground, exposed, and consumed by fire. The peoples look on him and are appalled. This is what happens to kings and nation who commit multitudes on iniquity like they did.
Story of Israel
Allow me to digress a little from Israel’s story.
“Tyre is an ancient Phoenician port city which, in myth, is known as the birthplace of Europa (who gave Europe its name) and Dido of Carthage (who gave aid to, and fell in love with, Aeneas of Troy). The name means ‘rock’ and the city consisted of two parts, the main trade centre on an island, and ‘old Tyre’, about a half mile opposite on the mainland. The old city, known as Ushu, was founded c. 2750 BCE and the trade centre grew up shortly after. In time, the island complex became more prosperous and populated than Ushu and was heavily fortified. The prosperity of Tyre attracted the attention of King Nebuchadnezzar II of Babylon who lay siege to the city for thirteen years in the 6th century BCE without breaking their defenses. During this siege most of the inhabitants of the mainland city abandoned it for the relative safety of the island city.” (http://www.ancient.eu.com/Tyre/)
The Babylonians were able to defeat Judah. But they could not overcome Tyre.
“While Tyre seemed to withstand Nebuchadnezzar, it was not prepared for Alexander 250 years later. Although every Phoenician city to the north, including Sidon, welcomed Alexander, Tyre would only agree to surrender nominally to him. They would not allow him entrance to the city, which was exactly what Alexander intended to do. Not be denied, after only a seven-month siege of the island city, he did what no one else had ever considered possible. Utilizing stones, timber, dirt and debris from the mainland, Alexander constructed a causeway out into the Mediterranean. At last he reached the island, breached the city wall and slew or put into slavery the defiant Tyrians. An amazing feat, Tyre was changed forever.” (http://www.biblearchaeology.org/post/2010/01/26/the-biblical-cities-of-tyre-and-sidon.aspx#Article)
Story of Jesus
Jesus confronted the devil as well.
4 And Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the wilderness for forty days, being tempted by the devil. …
12 And Jesus answered him, “It is said, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.’ ” And when the devil had ended every temptation, he departed from him until an opportune time. And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit to Galilee, and a report about him went out through all the surrounding country. (Lk 4.1-2,12-14)
He defeated the devil. Resisted all his temptations. And began his journey to the cross. There he won the battle against the devil and rescued his people under the devils power.
Copyright © Joshua Washington and thescripturesays, 2014. All Rights