Ezekiel 28:12
Son of man, take up a lamentation on the king of Tyrus, and say to him, Thus said the Lord GOD; You seal up the sum, full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty.
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(12) Thou sealest up the sum.—Thou markest it as complete or perfect. (Comp. Daniel 9:24; Job 9:7.) The word for sum occurs only here and in Ezekiel 43:10, where it refers to the well measured and arranged building of the Temple.

Ezekiel 28:12-13. Take up a lamentation upon the king of Tyrus — See Ezekiel 27:32. Thou sealest up the sum, full of wisdom, &c. — In thine own opinion thou art the perfect pattern of wisdom and all other excellences; thou possessest them in full measure, they are thine by an unalienable tenure, sealed up safely among thy treasures. The LXX. render this, Συ αποσφραγισμα ομοιωσεως, και στεφανος καλλους, Thou art the seal of likeness, and crown of beauty. To the same purpose the Vulgate, Tu signaculum similitudinis, plenus sapientia, perfectus decore: that is, says Lowth, “Thou art the image of God, an exact impression taken from that great copy. For the following verse shows that the expression alludes to Adam, when he was first created, and came pure out of the hands of his Maker; full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty.” Thou hast been in Eden — “As thy situation was pleasant, so wast thou plentifully supplied with every thing which could contribute to make thy life pleasant and happy. The state of paradise, in common speech, denotes a condition every way complete and happy. See Isaiah 51:3. The expression, as well as the whole context, alludes to the complete happiness which Adam enjoyed in paradise, before his apostacy and fall.” Every precious stone was thy covering — Not only was thy crown adorned with the choicest jewels, but thou wast arrayed with royal robes, enriched with gold and precious stones of all sorts. There is probably an allusion here to the precious stones which were placed in the high-priest’s breast-plate, as the next verse alludes to the cherubim over the mercy-seat. Accordingly the LXX. enlarge the number of the stones here mentioned from nine to twelve, and place them in the same order in which they are ranked Exodus 28:17, &c. The workmanship of thy tabrets, &c.,was prepared in thee — Or, for thee, in the day thou wast created — The highest expressions of joy, such as are the sounding of all sorts of musical instruments, ushered thee into the world, according to the usual practice at the birth of great princes; and ever since thou hast been brought up in the choicest delicacies which a royal palace or a luxurious city could furnish.28:1-19 Ethbaal, or Ithobal, was the prince or king of Tyre; and being lifted up with excessive pride, he claimed Divine honours. Pride is peculiarly the sin of our fallen nature. Nor can any wisdom, except that which the Lord gives, lead to happiness in this world or in that which is to come. The haughty prince of Tyre thought he was able to protect his people by his own power, and considered himself as equal to the inhabitants of heaven. If it were possible to dwell in the garden of Eden, or even to enter heaven, no solid happiness could be enjoyed without a humble, holy, and spiritual mind. Especially all spiritual pride is of the devil. Those who indulge therein must expect to perish.To "seal the sum" is to make up the whole measure of perfection. Compare the Septuagint12. sealest up the sum—literally, "Thou art the one sealing the sum of perfection." A thing is sealed when completed (Da 9:24). "The sum" implies the full measure of beauty, from a Hebrew root, "to measure." The normal man—one formed after accurate rule. A lamentation: see Ezekiel 27:2.

The king; called prince, Ezekiel 28:2.

Thou sealest up the sum; in the search into the frame of thy government, the management of it, the prosperity thereof, and its glory, power, riches, and confederacies, thou dost think thyself but just to thy kingdom to account it the perfect idea of a good government, that in the Tyrian state nothing is wanting that might be required in a good government, in the best government, and so sealest to the premises; thus vainly puffed up, thou wilt have it that fulness of wisdom and perfection of beauty are in thee, but neither thy wisdom shall prevent or defeat the attempts of thine enemies, nor thy beauty charm their rage; thou shalt fall by them. Take up a lamentation upon the king of Tyrus,.... Who is before called the prince of Tyre; and who he was See Gill on Ezekiel 28:2, the bishop of Rome was first only a "nagid", a prince, ruler, governor, and leader in the church; afterwards he became a king, a head, even over other kings, princes, and states; perhaps this may also point to his twofold power, secular and ecclesiastical, and so he is represented by two beasts, Revelation 13:1, here a lamentation or funeral ditty is ordered to be taken up and said for him, to denote his certain destruction and ruin; though some have thought the fall of the angels, and others the fall of Adam, is referred to; several passages are interpreted of Adam in the Talmud (l):

and say unto him, thus saith the Lord God, thou sealest up the sum; or "pattern" (m); of everything that is excellent; thou art in all things, consummately so, as that nothing could be added; that is, in his own esteem and account. Junius thinks it refers to the sealing of goods exported, for which a duty was to be paid, without doing which merchandise was not allowed. Antichrist would not suffer any to buy or sell but such as receive his mark or seal on their right hand, or in their forehead, Revelation 13:16. Cocceius renders it, "the sealer of the measure" (n); and takes it to be an allusion to the custom of sealing measures, used in buying and selling; and that it respects the man of sin, who takes upon him the power of making rules and canons for faith and practice:

full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty; a most accomplished man for parts and person in his own conceit: antichrist assumes to himself a perfect knowledge of the Scriptures, and sets up himself as an infallible judge of controversies; and glories in the splendour and order of his church, and the government of it.

(l) T. Bab. Bava Bathra, fol. 75. 1.((m) "exemplar, sive specimen", Tigurine version: Castalio. (n) "Signator mensurae", Cocceius, Starckius.

Son of man, take up a lamentation upon the king of Tyre, and say to him, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Thou sealest up the sum, full of {d} wisdom, and perfect in beauty.

(d) He derides the vain opinion and confidence that the Tyrians had in their riches, strength and pleasures.

12. king of Tyrus] The prophet appears to use the terms king and prince (nagîd, or nasî) indifferently. LXX. of Ezek. reserves the term “king” for the rulers of Babylon and Egypt, except in general expressions like “kings of the earth,” or, of the nations (Ezekiel 27:33; Ezekiel 27:35, Ezekiel 32:10).

sealest up the sum] The term “sum” only again ch. Ezekiel 43:10 of the construction or idea of the temple, there rendered “pattern.” The verb is used of the work of God in ordering creation by weight and measure, Job 28:25; Isaiah 40:12-13. The phrase “thou sealest” is pointed as part. art the sealer of, but some MSS. and the ancient Versions read art the sealring of. To “seal” has always the natural sense, or means to close up, fasten up; it seems nowhere to mean to round off, complete or consummate. LXX. omits “full of wisdom,” and the first words are in parallelism to “the perfection of beauty.” This would suggest that the first words describe what the prince is or was, not what he did. The term rendered “sum” may mean symmetry (perfection), and the whole: thou wast the sealring of symmetry (perfection), and the perfection of beauty. In this case the prince is compared to a sealring of exquisite workmanship. On the other hand if part. be read, “thou wast the sealer of symmetry,” the conception of something impressing symmetry (upon all things) seems expressed. There might then be an allusion to the Wisdom; cf. the comparison of light to a seal Job 38:14.

12–19. Lament over the fall of the prince of Tyre

The passage is of extreme difficulty partly from the obscurity of several expressions in it, which do not occur again, and partly from allusions not now intelligible. The general drift of the passage is plain. (1) Ezekiel 28:12-15. The prince of Tyre is represented as a glorious being placed in Eden the garden of God. He was the perfection of beauty, was set on the mountain of God, and was perfect in his ways from the day he was created till iniquity was found in him. (2) Ezekiel 28:16-19. He fell from his high place through pride because of the multitude of his riches, and was therefore expelled from the garden of God.—Towards the end of the passage the allegory of a being in paradise is departed from and the actual circumstances of the prince and his city are more literally referred to. The text of LXX. diverges in important particulars from the Heb.

Particular difficulties, however, are numerous. 1. The expression “sealest up the sum,” Ezekiel 28:12 is very obscure. For the participle “sealest” the ancient versions read signet or ring. That there is reference to a ring seems plain from Ezekiel 28:13. 2. Again the cherub is referred to. There can be no doubt that the prophet has in his mind the story of Paradise (Genesis 2, 3). The cherub naturally belongs to the Paradise of God. In the Heb. text, as at present pointed (though the pointing is very anomalous) the prince is compared to the cherub, or said to be or have been the cherub. The text, however, permits the reading with or beside the cherub (v, 14, so LXX.). The prince sinned and was expelled from the garden of God where he was placed. The idea of the prophet is that pride and self-deification was the sin of the prince and caused his expulsion. This, however, in Ezek. is the sin of all the foreign princes or nations, Egypt no less than Tyre, and cannot be held part of a tradition of the Fall, or of paradise. That the prophet does refer to a fall and expulsion from paradise or destruction of the transgressor seems plain (Ezekiel 28:16-17). But any fall of the cherub is not hinted at anywhere in the Old Test.; on the contrary the cherubs are represented as watchers and protectors of the garden of God against men (Genesis 3:24). There are references in the Old Test. to the sin of higher beings (e.g. Genesis 6:1; Isaiah 24:21), but the prophet’s allusions to the cherubs in other places make it very improbable that he should think of them as sinning. 3. It is probable, therefore, that it is the history of the first man that floats before his mind. The term “created” applied to the prince would hardly be used of the cherub. It is not unlikely, however, that Ezek. is in possession of traditions regarding Paradise more ample than those in Gen. or different from them. At the same time the divergences may be due to his own tendency to idealize. The prince of Tyre is represented as wiser than all men, even than Daniel; and in Job 15:7-8 the first man born is spoken of as possessing supernatural wisdom. The prophet might have before his mind that Wisdom which was the first of God’s works of old (Proverbs 8), and his architect in creation, and who realized herself in the symmetry of the universe.Verse 12. - Thou sealest up the sum, etc. The noun is found only there and in Ezekiel 43:10, where it is translated "pattern," but is cognate with the word rendered" tale" (equivalent to "measure") of Exodus 5:13, and "measure" in Ezekiel 45:11. The probable meaning is, Thou settest the seal to thy completeness (perfection). Thou deemest that thou hast attained the consummation of all beauty and wisdom. The LXX. and the Vulgate give, "Thou art a seal;" and this suggests a parallelism with Jeremiah's works to Coniah (Jeremiah 22:24). The words were, of course, written with a keen irony. This was what the King of Tyro thought of himself.
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