Torrey - Satan -2.01- Satan in Ezekiel 28

2. EZEKIEL Ezekiel 28:1-19 RV

— "The word of the LORD came again unto me, saying, Son of man, say unto the prince of Tyre, 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 man, and not God, though thou didst set thine heart as the heart of God: behold, thou art wiser than Daniel; there is no secret that they can hide from thee: by thy wisdom and by thine understanding thou hast gotten thee riches, and hast gotten gold and silver into thy treasures: by thy great wisdom and by thy traffic hast thou increased thy riches, and thine heart is lifted up because of thy riches: therefore thus saith the Lord God: Because thou hast set thine heart as the heart of God; therefore behold, I will bring strangers upon thee, the terrible of the nations: and they shall draw their swords against the beauty of thy wisdom, and they shall defile thy brightness. They shall bring thee down to the pit; and thou shalt die the death of them that are slain, in the heart of the seas. Wilt thou yet say before him that slayest thee, I am God? but thou art man, and not God, in the hand of him that woundeth thee. Thou shalt die the deaths of the uncircumcised by the hand of strangers: for I have spoken it, saith the LORD God. Moreover the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, Son of man, take up a lamentation for the King of Tyre, and say unto him, Thus saith the LORD God: Thou sealest up the sum, full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty. Thou wast in Eden the garden of God: every precious stone was thy covering, the sardius, the topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, and the jasper, the sapphire, the emerald, and the carbuncle and gold: the workmanship of thy tabrets and of thy pipes was in thee; in the day that thou wast created they were prepared. Thou wast the anointed cherub that covereth: and I set thee, so that thou wast upon the holy mountain of God: thou hast walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire. Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till unrighteousness was found in thee. By the multitude of thy traffic they filled the midst of thee with violence, and thou hast sinned: therefore have I cast thee as profane out of the mountain of God; and I have destroyed thee, O covering cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire. Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness: I have cast thee to the ground, I have laid thee before kings, that they may behold thee. By the multitude of thine iniquities, in the unrighteousness of thy traffic, thou hast profaned thy sanctuaries; therefore have I brought forth a fire from the midst of thee, it hath devoured thee, and I have turned thee to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold thee. All they that know thee among the peoples shall be astonished at thee: thou art become a terror, and thou shalt never be any more."

TO WHOM DOES THIS PASSAGE REFER?

Verses 1-10 refer at least primarily to the prince of Tyre, then reigning (Ittiobalus by name, according to Josephus). They were fulfilled in the seige of Tyre by Nebuchadnezzar.

Verses 11-19 have expressions that cannot refer to any mere man (e.g., vv. 12, 13, 14). There are, however, other verses that seem to indicate an earthly kingdom (e.g., 16, 18).

WHAT IS THE EXPLANATION OF THIS ENIGMA.

We frequently find in prophecy that the prophet moves on from speaking of a contemporary event to speaking of some event of the last times which is symbolized in some respect by the contemporary event. For example, in Matthew 24:15-21, Christ speaks of the destruction of Jerusalem, which was in a very true sense a Day of the Lord, and from that he passes on to speak of the great Day of the Lord yet to come in verses 22-31. So swift is the transition from the one to the other that it is difficult to mark exactly where the transition takes place. This also occurs in Ezekiel's prophecy. Ittiobalus was in respects a type or symbol of "the man of sin" (vv. 2, 5-6). (Compare to 2 Thessalonians 2:3-4. Also compare verse with Daniel 11:41-45. Note "the heart of the seas" and "between the seas.") But there are some things in verses 11-19 (the king of Tyre) that seem to apply to a supernatural king and some to an earthly king. This earthly king is to have enormous commerce. Compare to the great development of commerce in the last days: Revelation 13:16-17 — "And he caused all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: and that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name." Revelation 18:3, 9-19 — "For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies .... And the kings of the earth, who have committed fornication and lived deliciously with her, shall bewail her, and lament for her, when they shall see the smoke of her burning, standing afar off for the fear of her torment, saying, Alas, alas, that great city, that was clothed in fine linen, and purple, and scarlet, and decked with gold, and precious stones, and pearls! For in one hour so great riches is come to nought. And every shipmaster, and all the company in ships, and sailors, and as many as trade by sea, stood afar off.

And cried when they saw the smoke of her burning; saying, What city is like unto this great city! And they cast dust on their heads, and cried, weeping and wailing, saying, Alas, alas, that great city, wherein were made rich all that had ships in the sea by reason of her costliness! For in one hour is she made desolate."

The simplest explanation of this is that the King of Tyre represents the Antichrist (as the Prince of Tyre was the type of the Antichrist) and that he is to be an incarnation of Satan as the true Christ was an incarnation of God. (Compare to 2 Thessalonians 2:8-9 RV — "When shall be revealed the lawless one.., whose coming is according to the working of Satan with all power.") If this is the true solution, this passage teaches us much about Satan.