Tyre is another city in Isaiah that is judged and chastised for not following the Lord. Tyre was a seaport and many populations depended on the trade and commerce there for their income.
Tyre was a very old city that caused many to prosper but the city as a whole did not honor or glorify God for these rich blessings. Instead, this chapter paints a picture of a city that is self-satisfied and confident in its prosperous status.
Tyre was to experience a downfall of its commerce and success as so many of the nations spent their efforts fighting and warring around it. As we have read in previous chapters, God has been communicating through the prophet Isaiah that countless nations would be punished for their godlessness and idolatry.
God says that Tyre will be laid to waste for seventy years. During this time, the sinners that had once prospered will lament its state. However, after the seventy years has passed, God will once more set up this coastal city to prosper. But this time, the profit from the commerce will not be stored away by the people in control but will rather be used to the benefit of the people that love and serve God:
“Her gain and her pay will be set apart for the LORD; it will not be treasured nor laid up, for her gain will be for those who dwell before the LORD, to eat sufficiently, and for fine clothing.” Isaiah 23:18
The book of Isaiah is wondrous and despite the repeated instances of cataloguing sinful nations and their punishments, there are still good lessons for us today. God allowed Tyre’s prosperity and wealth. Even when the city did not recognize the source of wealth, God allowed it. But things came to a point where God would no longer allow it and instead punished the city before turning its use to His own.
Our success, when ill-gotten or not properly put in context as blessing can continue for years, decades, lifetimes. But God knows those that give Him honor and thanks and glory. And when we have humble hearts that are grateful to Almighty God for every bite of food we take and for every raindrop that does not land on our heads, He knows it.
Please join me tonight in offering thanks for our innumerable blessings.
“The LORD of hosts has purposed it, To bring to dishonor the pride of all glory, To bring into contempt all the honorable of the earth.” Isaiah 23:9