And it came to pass in the eleventh year, on the first day of the month, that the word of the Lord came to me, saying, “Son of man, because Tyre has said against Jerusalem, ‘Aha! She is broken who was the gateway of the peoples; now she is turned over to me; I shall be filled; she is laid waste.’ “Therefore thus says the Lord God: ‘Behold, I am against you, O Tyre, and will cause many nations to come up against you, as the sea causes its waves to come up. And they shall destroy the walls of Tyre and break down her towers; I will also scrape her dust from her and make her like the top of a rock. It shall be a place for spreading nets in the midst of the sea, for I have spoken,’ says the Lord God; ‘it shall become plunder for the nations. (Ezekiel 26:1-5)
Tyre In Prophecy
Fulfilled prophecy is one of the strongest arguments for the evidence the Bible is a divine revelation. No other religion or belief system (Mormon, Moslem, Hindu, Buddhist) can claim the purity of divine truth as revealed in the pages of the Bible. The value of fulfilled prophecy is the continual testimony through the ages of what was said, how it was said, and the exacting details of the prophecy that remain true with each passing year. Biblical prophecy is not a guess or lucky prediction but an exacting and precise wording that is unambiguous and demonstrative by its nature. One of the amazing stories of prophecy is found in the word of God against the ancient city of Tyre.
The prophet Ezekiel was part of the captives taken from Jerusalem during the Babylonian conquest of Judah in 597 B.C. He was thirty years old when called to the prophetic ministry. Part of his ministry was to warn the people of the impending doom of Judah and the destruction of the Temple. Eleven years after Ezekiel was taken captive, the Babylonians destroyed the House of God in Jerusalem. The Lord allowed Babylon to enter His Temple and take everything, including the Holy of Holies. God’s glory left the Temple because of the sins of the people. As God rained judgment down upon His own people, the prophet Ezekiel declared the wrath of God against the nations that mocked the destruction of Judah, including the city of Tyre.
Tyre was located in Phoenicia, twenty miles south of Sidon. The central part of the city was on the mainland and when the Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar destroyed Sidon, the people of Tyre fled to an island one-half mile from shore. The city remained secure until Alexander the Great came in 332 B.C. Alexander took the remains of the mainland city of Tyre and threw them into the sea, building a causeway 200 feet wide out towards the island. Along with a fleet of 224 ships, Tyre was stormed, 8000 of her inhabitants massacred, 2000 crucified on the shore, and 30,000 sold into slavery. The city would fade into insignificance except for its prominent place in the prophecies of the Lord God.
Ezekiel said Tyre would be destroyed as many nations would fight against her to destroy her like the waves of the sea crashing against the shoreline. God said He would scrape away its soil and make it a bare rock. Part of the prophecy that can still be seen today is how the ruins of the city will be just a rock in the sea, a place for fishermen to spread their nets. The mainland city has never been rebuilt. Tyre has become a desolate and uninhabited city. Ezekiel wrote these words almost six hundred years before Christ and his words continue to declare the word of God. Ferrell Jenkins writes, “Biblical prophecy is not making a lot of predictions about the future and then having a few, or even most, of them come to pass. In Biblical prophecy, everything that has been predicted has come to pass.”
The Bible is the only book (without exception) that declares the word of the Lord against people, cities, and nations in prophecy and those words remain true with each passing age. Nothing is more powerful than the continual unveiling of truth that is undeniable, unchangeable, and unfailing in the word of the Lord. Biblical prophecy will not save a man, but it requires an acceptance that if God’s word is so crystal clear about events that are impossible for human wisdom to foretell; of how much more important are the words that define grace and mercy of God in salvation? Jesus is not a myth and the prophecy of Tyre proves that. The Son of God told men what to do to be saved. If the word of God is true about a city that is thrown into the sea, the word of God about salvation is essential to give heed. Jesus declared anyone who believes and is baptized would be saved, but anyone who refuses to believe will be condemned. The city of Tyre proves this to be true.