When Affluence No Longer Has Any Influence.
“Everything is lost— your riches and wares, your sailors and pilots, your ship builders, merchants, and warriors. On the day of your ruin, everyone on board sinks into the depths of the sea.” – Ezekiel 27:27 NLT
In this section of the book, Ezekiel gives oracles or judgments against seven nations that surround Israel and Judah. In them he states what God is going to do to these nations for the roles they have played in Judah’s destruction or for having tried to prosper from their situation. In these two chapters, he concentrates his attention on Tyre, a wealthy and powerful seacoast nation that stood to benefit greatly from Judah’s fall. Over and over again Ezekiel seems to highlight two indistibutable facts: Tyre’s extreme wealth and God’s sovereignty. Tyre was a highly prosperous nation that benefited from diverse trade relationships with a variety of nations. They had taken advantage of their ideal location along the coast and had become a focal point along the trade routes of that day. They traded in everything from slaves to silver, wine to white wool, ivory to iron, and cloth to carpets. Their warehouses were filled to the brim and their ships were loaded with goods from all over the known world at that time. They were rich, prosperous, and as a result, powerful. Their army was large and made up of mercenaries from around the world. And now, because Judah was suffering under the hand of God, the nation of Tyre was salivating at the chance to take over their trading relationships and prosper because of their demise.
But Tyre’s wealth was no match for God’s sovereignty. In fact, each of these nations were going to be destroyed by God as a reminder of God’s covenant with the people of Israel. God may be punishing Israel at this moment, but He had still promised to restore them to the land. God was not about to let these foreign nations profit from Israel’s situation. He would keep the land for them and protect it in order that they might return when He deemed it appropriate. These seven oracles would have been words of hope to the exiled Israelites. In spite of their unfaithfulness, God would remain faithful to them, keeping the land safe for their eventual return. Tyre was wealthy and stood to profit from the fall of Jerusalem, but God was not going to let that happen. In fact, God was going to bring destruction on the nation of Tyre, allowing the Babylonians to conquer and destroy them. Over and over again, Ezekiel writes, “Yes, the Sovereign Lord has spoken!” None of these nations were any match for the power of Almighty God. No nation can stand against God. They may do so for a time, but the day is coming when God will bring judgment on all the nations. China, Iraq, Iran, Russia, Cuba, South Korea, and yes, even America. God’s will is going to be done. And no nation will be able to stand against it. He is going to accomplish what He has promised and there is no power in the world that can prevent it. Our God is great, and He is in complete control of ALL things.
Father, You are sovereign and Lord over all, including all the nations of the world. I can rest in the fact that there is no power like Yours. No nation can compete with You or prevent You from accomplishing Your divine will. Thanks for that reminder today. Amen
Grow Pastor & Minister to Men