Ezekiel 26:2
Son of man, because that Tyrus has said against Jerusalem, Aha, she is broken that was the gates of the people: she is turned to me: I shall be replenished, now she is laid waste:
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(2) She is broken that was the gates of the people.—“Gates” is in the plural simply because the word originally means a leaf of a door or gate, and hence the two leaves mean the gate; accordingly the sense would be better conveyed by using the singular in English. On the other hand, “people, both here and in Ezekiel 27:3, is intentionally in the plural =the nations. By omitting all the words in italics in this verse a better idea is obtained of the exultation of Tyre over the fall of Jerusalem.

This exultation is described as of a purely selfish and commercial character, and shows nothing of the spitefulness and religious animosity of the nations mentioned in the previous chapter. Jerusalem had been made in the days of Solomon the great commercial emporium of the inland trade from Arabia, and even from India, as well as the negotiator of products between Egypt and the Hittites and other northern nations. Doubtless something of this commercial importance still remained to Jerusalem in her decay, of which we have already seen evidence in Ezekiel 16; but however this may have been, a considerable city, situated as Jerusalem was, must of necessity have been the centre of many of those transactions between the surrounding nations which Tyre would gladly have monopolised for herself. Hence her exultation: “Jerusalem being destroyed, all that gave her importance among the nations must come to increase my prosperity.”

Ezekiel 26:2-3. Because that Tyrus hath said, Aha, she is broken, &c. — The meaning seems to be, the city is broken, at whose gates the people entered in; that is, the place is demolished where there used to be a confluence of people from all parts, especially at the solemn festivals. She is turned unto me, I shall be replenished — Tyre rejoiced at the fall of Jerusalem, because she expected her trade would be increased by it in becoming the mart for the commodities which, while Jerusalem stood, were bought and sold there. To which may be added, that when Jerusalem was taken, the spoil of the city was carried thither for sale, and several of the inhabitants who were made captives, were there sold as slaves. Therefore, behold, I am, against thee, O Tyrus — The providence of God had greatly favoured Tyre: it was a pleasant and wealthy city, and might have continued so if its inhabitants had sympathized with Jerusalem in her calamities; but when, instead of that, they took pleasure in those calamities, and rejoiced at the fall of that neighbouring city, because of the gain which they thought would thereby accrue to them, they provoked the wrath of God against themselves, for he cannot but abhor the conduct of all such as take pleasure in the calamities of others. I will cause many nations to come up against thee, &c. — The Chaldeans with their confederates might be very properly called many nations, as, without doubt, the army of Nebuchadnezzar, whose dominions were very extensive, was made up of the people of various nations. As the sea causeth his waves to come up — “They shall be as loud, as numerous, as irresistible, as the waves of the sea. This is one of the beautiful and expressive images which occur in the magnificent prophecy here recorded.” — Bishop Newcome. Great and victorious armies are described in other places of Scripture under the figure of an inundation carrying all before it.26:1-14 To be secretly pleased with the death or decay of others, when we are likely to get by it; or with their fall, when we may thrive upon it, is a sin that easily besets us, yet is not thought so bad as really it is. But it comes from a selfish, covetous principle, and from that love of the world as our happiness, which the love of God expressly forbids. He often blasts the projects of those who would raise themselves on the ruin of others. The maxims most current in the trading world, are directly opposed to the law of God. But he will show himself against the money-loving, selfish traders, whose hearts, like those of Tyre, are hardened by the love of riches. Men have little cause to glory in things which stir up the envy and rapacity of others, and which are continually shifting from one to another; and in getting, keeping, and spending which, men provoke that God whose wrath turns joyous cities into ruinous heaps.Gates - i. e., one gate of two leaves.

The people - Or, the peoples (and in Ezekiel 27:3), the plural expressing the fact that many peoples passed through Jerusalem, as the central place on the highway of commerce, e. g., in the reign of Solomon. This was viewed with jealousy by Tyre, who owed her greatness to the same cause, and in the true spirit of mercantile competition exulted in the thought that the trade of Jerusalem would be diverted into her markets. Render it: Aha! She is broken - the gate of the peoples! She is turned unto me. I shall be filled. She is laid waste.

2. Tyre—(Jos 19:29; 2Sa 24:7), literally, meaning "the rock-city," Zor; a name applying to the island Tyre, called New Tyre, rather than Old Tyre on the mainland. They were half a mile apart. "New Tyre," a century and a half before the fall of Jerusalem, had successfully resisted Shalmaneser of Assyria, for five years besieging it (Menander, from the Tyrian archives, quoted by Josephus, Antiquities, 9.14. 2). It was the stronger and more important of the two cities, and is the one chiefly, though not exclusively, here meant. Tyre was originally a colony of Zidon. Nebuchadnezzar's siege of it lasted thirteen years (Eze 29:18; Isa 23:1-18). Though no profane author mentions his having succeeded in the siege, Jerome states he read the fact in Assyrian histories.

Aha!—exultation over a fallen rival (Ps 35:21, 25).

she … that was the gates—that is, the single gate composed of two folding doors. Hence the verb is singular. "Gates" were the place of resort for traffic and public business: so here it expresses a mart of commerce frequented by merchants. Tyre regards Jerusalem not as an open enemy, for her territory being the narrow, long strip of land north of Philistia, between Mount Lebanon and the sea, her interest was to cultivate friendly relations with the Jews, on whom she was dependent for corn (Eze 27:17; 1Ki 5:9; Ac 12:20). But Jerusalem had intercepted some of the inland traffic which she wished to monopolize to herself; so, in her intensely selfish worldly-mindedness, she exulted heartlessly over the fall of Jerusalem as her own gain. Hence she incurred the wrath of God as pre-eminently the world's representative in its ambition, selfishness, and pride, in defiance of the will of God (Isa 23:9).

she is turned unto me—that is, the mart of corn, wine, oil, balsam, &c., which she once was, is transferred to me. The caravans from Palmyra, Petra, and the East will no longer be intercepted by the market ("the gates") of Jerusalem, but will come to me.

Tyrus; the city for the people; it is probable it was a universal joy, therefore ascribed to the whole city, built on a rock and island of the same name, not far distant from the continent, a very great traded port and city.

Hath said; either God revealed this to the prophet so soon as these insulting Tyrians spoke it, or else Ezekiel speaks of it prophetically, and as if it were done.

Said against Jerusalem, Aha; showed great joy at the fall of Jerusalem, and triumphed over her.

She is broken by Nebuchadnezzar’s army.

The gates of the people; near to the gates of the cities were usually, the great merchants, and so here Jerusalem is called the great mart of nations and people from all parts resorting to her for trade or religion.

She is turned unto me; trading interest will turn to me, they that did carry merchandise to Jerusalem will now bring it to me.

I shall be replenished; have full trade, my haven full of ships, streets full of buyers and sellers, ships full of wares, houses full of lodgers, and purses full of money.

She is laid waste; she reflected on wasted Jerusalem with joy, which was impious, injurious, and inhuman, to rejoice in the ruin of her neighbour. Son of man, because that Tyrus hath said against Jerusalem, aha,.... As rejoicing at her destruction, and insulting over her in it; which was barbarous and inhuman, and resented by the Lord:

she is broken that was the gates of the people; through whose gates the people went in and out in great numbers; a city to which there was very popular, not only for religion, from all parts, at their solemn feasts, but for merchandise from several parts of the world; and was now full of people before its destruction, the inhabitants of Judea having fled thither for safety, upon the invasion made by the king of Babylon; but now the city was broken up, as it is said it was, by the Chaldean army, Jeremiah 52:7, its gates and walls were broken down, and lay in a ruinous condition. The Targum is,

"she is broken down that afforded merchandise to all people.''

She is turned unto me; either the inhabitants of Jerusalem, which escaped and fled to Tyre for refuge; or the spoil taken out of it, which was carried there to be sold; and even the captives themselves to be sold for slaves, which was one part of the merchandise of Tyre; see Ezekiel 27:3, or the business, trade, and merchandise carried on in Jerusalem, were brought to Tyre upon its destruction; so Jarchi and Kimchi. The Targum is,

"she is turned to come unto me;''

which favours the first sense; all may be intended.

I shall be replenished, now she is laid waste; or, "I shall be filled" (b); with inhabitants, riches, and wealth, with merchants and merchandise, Jerusalem her rival being destroyed; this was what gave her joy; and is a common thing for persons to rejoice at the fall or death of those of the same trade with them; hoping for an increase of theirs by means of it, which yet is sinful.

(b) "implebor", Cocceius, Starckius.

Son of man, because that Tyre hath said against Jerusalem, Aha, she is broken that was the {b} gates of the people: she is turned to me: I shall be {c} replenished, now she is laid waste:

(b) That is, the famous city Jerusalem to which all people resorted.

(c) My riches and fame will increase: thus the wicked rejoice at their fall by whom they may have any profit or advantage.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
2. The sin of Tyre: her rejoicing over the calamity of Judah, in the hopes that it will further her interests.

Aha, she is broken] Rather: aha! the gate (door) of the peoples is broken, it is turned unto me. (“Door” is plur. having leaves, or by attraction of peoples.) The idea appears to be that Jerusalem or Judah was a door barring the entrance to Tyre, which being broken and turned or opened towards Tyre the nations would stream with their commerce towards her. The kingdom of Judah lay across the great commercial routes from the south, and no doubt intercepted much of the merchandise that otherwise would have reached Tyre, and probably exacted custom on that which was allowed to pass. The natural sense of “door of the nations” would be door into the nations (Nahum 3:13; Zechariah 11:1), and the idea would be that the door was now opened for Tyre to enter. The sense remains the same: that which stood between Tyre and the nations is removed.

2. Prophecy is always ideal in its delineations. Its threats and promises are alike hyperbolical whether they concern Israel or the nations. And in regard to fulfilment the same general principles must be applied to all prophecies, those of redemption and those of calamity alike. The former are not fulfilled at once, nor at all literally, neither need we expect immediate or literal fulfilment of the latter. At the same time in regard to both it must be maintained that the prophets imagined the fulfilment as they describe it. This, however, is part of their idealism; the moral element is always the main thing in their prophecies. What they predict is the exhibition of Jehovah’s moral rule of the world; the form in which they clothe this exhibition may not be quite that given in history.Verse 2. - Because that Tyrus, etc. As the nearest great commercial city, the Venice of the ancient world, Tyre, from the days of David (2 Samuel 5:11) and Solomon (1 Kings 5:1) onward, had been prominent in the eyes of the statesmen and prophets of Judah; and Ezekiel follows in the footsteps of Joel 3:4; Amos 1:9, 10; Isaiah 23, in dealing with it. The description in Vers. 5 and 14 points, not to the city on the mainland, the old Tyre of Joshua 19:29, which had been taken by Shalmaneser and was afterwards destroyed by Alexander the Great, but to the island-city, the new Tyre, which was, at this time, the emporium of the ancient world. The extent of her commerce will meet us in Ezekiel 27. Here, too, as in the case of the nations in Ezekiel 25, Ezekiel's indignation is roused by the exulting selfishness with which Tyre had looked on the downfall (actual or imminent, as before) of Jerusalem. "Now," her rulers seem to have said, "we shall be the only power in the land of Canaan." Jerusalem, that had been the gate of the peoples, was now broken. The name thus given may imply either

(1) that Jerusalem was regarded as to a considerable extent a commercial city, carrying on much intercourse with the nations with which she was in alliance, (Ezekiel 23:40, 41; 1 Kings 9:26-28; 1 Kings 22:48; Isaiah 2:7; Herod., 3:5, of Cadytis, i.e. probably Jerusalem); or

(2) that its temple had, under Hezekiah and Josiah, drawn many proselytes from the neighboring nations, as in Psalm 87:4-6, and was looking forward to a yet fuller confluence of men of all races, as in the prophecies of Micah 4:1, 2 and Isaiah 2:2, 3 - expectations which may well have become known to a city like Tyro, in frequent intercourse with Judah. "Now," the Tyrians might say, "that hope is shattered." I shall be replenished. The interpolated "now" indicates what is, of course, implied, that Tyre expects her prosperity to increase in proportion to the decline and fall of Jerusalem. Against the Ammonites

Ezekiel 25:1. And the word of Jehovah came to me, saying, Ezekiel 25:2. Son of man, direct thy face towards the sons of Ammon, and prophesy against them, Ezekiel 25:3. And say to the sons of Ammon, Hear ye the word of the Lord Jehovah! Thus saith the Lord Jehovah, Because thou sayest, Aha! concerning my sanctuary, that it is profaned; and concerning the land of Israel, that it is laid waste; and concerning the house of Judah, that they have gone into captivity; Ezekiel 25:4. Therefore, behold, I will give thee to the sons of the east for a possession, that they may pitch their tent-villages in thee, and erect their dwellings in thee; they shall eat thy fruits, and they shall drink thy milk. Ezekiel 25:5. And Rabbah will I make a camel-ground, and the sons of Ammon a resting-place for flocks; and ye shall know that I am Jehovah. Ezekiel 25:6. For thus saith the Lord Jehovah, Because thou hast clapped thy hand, and stamped with thy foot, and hast rejoiced in soul with all thy contempt concerning the house of Israel, Ezekiel 25:7. Therefore, behold, I will stretch out my hand against thee, and give thee to the nations for booty, and cut thee off from the peoples, and exterminate thee from the lands; I will destroy thee, that thou mayst learn that I am Jehovah. - In Ezekiel 21:28., when predicting the expedition of Nebuchadnezzar against Jerusalem, Ezekiel had already foretold the destruction of the Ammonites, so that these verses are simply a resumption and confirmation of the earlier prophecy. In the passage referred to, Ezekiel, like Zephaniah before him (Zephaniah 2:8, Zephaniah 2:10), mentions their reviling of the people of God as the sin for which they are to be punished with destruction. This reviling, in which their hatred of the divine calling of Israel found vent, was the radical sin of Ammon. On the occasion of Judah's fall, it rose even to contemptuous and malicious joy at the profanation of the sanctuary of Jehovah by the destruction of the temple (a comparison with Ezekiel 24:21 will show that this is the sense in which נחל is to be understood), at the devastation of the land of Israel, and at the captivity of Judah, - in other words, at the destruction of the religious and political existence of Israel as the people of God. The profanation of the sanctuary is mentioned first, to intimate that the hostility to Israel, manifested by the Ammonites on every occasion that presented itself (for proofs, see the comm. on Zephaniah 2:8), had its roots not so much in national antipathies, as in antagonism to the sacred calling of Israel. As a punishment for this, they are not only to lose their land (Ezekiel 25:4 and Ezekiel 25:5), but to be cut off from the number of the nations (Ezekiel 25:6 and Ezekiel 25:7). The Lord will give up their land, with its productions, for a possession to the sons of the east, i.e., according to Genesis 25:13-18, to the Arabs, the Bedouins (for בּני קדם, see the comm. on Judges 6:3 and Job 1:3). The Piel ישּׁבוּ, although only occurring here, is not to be rejected as critically suspicious, and to be changed into Kal, as Hitzig proposes. The Kal would be unsuitable, because the subject of the sentence can only be בּני קדם, and not טירותיהם; and ישׁב in the Kal has an intransitive sense. For טירות, tent-villages of nomads, see the comm. on Genesis 25:16. משׁכּנים, dwellings, are the separate tents of the shepherds. In the last clauses of Ezekiel 25:4, המּה is repeated for the sake of emphasis; and Hitzig's opinion, that the first המּה corresponds to the subject in the clause 'וישּׁבוּ וגו, the second to that in ונתנוּ, is to be rejected as a marvellous flight of imagination, which approaches absurdity in the assertion that פּרי הארץ signifies the folds, i.e., the animals, of the land. Along with the fruit of the land, i.e., the produce of the soil, milk is also mentioned as a production of pastoral life, and the principal food of nomads. On the wealth of the Ammonites in flocks and herds, see Judges 6:5. The words are addressed to Ammon, as a land or kingdom, and hence the feminine suffix. The capital will also share the fate of the land. Rabbah (see the comm. on Deuteronomy 3:11) will become a camel-ground, a waste spot where camels lie down and feed. This has been almost literally fulfilled. The ruins of Ammn are deserted by men, and Seetzen found Arabs with their camels not far off (vid., von Raumer, Palestine, p. 268). In the parallel clause, the sons of Ammon, i.e., the Ammonites, are mentioned instead of their land.

In Ezekiel 25:6 and Ezekiel 25:7, the Lord announces to the nation of the Ammonites the destruction that awaits them, and reiterates with still stronger emphasis the sin which occasioned it, namely, the malicious delight they had manifested at Israel's fall. בּכל־שׁאטך is strengthened by בּנפשׁ: with all thy contempt in the soul, i.e., with all the contempt which thy soul could cherish. In Ezekiel 25:7 the ἁπ λεγ.. לבג occasions some difficulty. The Keri has substituted לבז, for booty for the nations (cf. Ezekiel 26:5); and all the ancient versions have adopted this. Consequently בּג might be a copyist's error for בּז; and in support of this the circumstance might be adduced, that in Ezekiel 47:13, where גּה stands for זה, we have unquestionably a substitution of ג for ז. But if the Chetib בז be correct, the word is to be explained - as it has been by Benfey (Die Montasnamen, p. 194) and Gildemeister (in Lassen's Zeitschrift fr die Kunde des Morgenlandes, iv. 1, p. 213ff.) - from the Sanscrit bha equals ga, pars, portio, and has passed into the Semitic languages from the Aryan, like the Syriac bagaa', esca, which P. Boetticher (Horae aram. p. 21) has correctly traced to the Sanscrit bhaj, conquere. - The executors of the judgment are not named; for the threat that God will give up the land of the Ammonites to the Bedouins for their possession, does not imply that they are to exterminate the Ammonites. On the contrary, a comparison of this passage with Amos 1:13-15 and Jeremiah 49:1-5, where the Ammonites are threatened not only with the devastation of their land, but also with transportation into exile, will show that the Chaldeans are to be thought of as executing the judgment. (See the comm. on Ezekiel 25:11.)

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