God’s Story... For My Life - Monday, February 10, 2014

A Sinking Ship

Read Ezekiel 27:1-25

Then this message came to me from the Lord: “Son of man, sing a funeral song for Tyre, that mighty gateway to the sea, the trading center of the world. Give Tyre this message from the Sovereign Lord: You boasted, O Tyre, ‘My beauty is perfect!’

“You extended your boundaries into the sea. Your builders made your beauty perfect. You were like a great ship built of the finest cypress from Senir. They took a cedar from Lebanon to make a mast for you. They carved your oars from the oaks of Bashan. Your deck of pine from the coasts of Cyprus was inlaid with ivory. Your sails were made of Egypt’s finest linen, and they flew as a banner above you. You stood beneath blue and purple awnings made bright with dyes from the coasts of Elishah.

“Your oarsmen came from Sidon and Arvad; your helmsmen were skilled men from Tyre itself. Wise old craftsmen from Gebal did the caulking. Ships from every land came with goods to barter for your trade.

“Men from distant Persia, Lydia, and Libya served in your great army. They hung their shields and helmets on your walls, giving you great honor. Men from Arvad and Helech stood on your walls. Your towers were manned by men from Gammad. Their shields hung on your walls, completing your beauty.

“Tarshish sent merchants to buy your wares in exchange for silver, iron, tin, and lead. Merchants from Greece, Tubal, and Meshech brought slaves and articles of bronze to trade with you.”
(Ezekiel 27:1-13)

Reflect

Tyre was one of the most well-known cities in Phoenicia. Known for their sea craft, the people of Tyre also set out to colonize other areas. However, chapter 27 is a funeral lament over Tyre’s fall. It compares the city to a ship (27:1-9), mentions many of its trading partners (27:10-25), and then describes how the ship sank (27:26-36). Jesus spoke of Tyre in Matthew 11:22 as a city worthy of God’s judgment. The beauty of Tyre was the source of its pride, and this pride guaranteed its judgment.

Respond

Unwarranted conceit or pride in our own accomplishments should be a danger signal to us (see James 4:13-17). God is not against our finding pleasure or satisfaction in what we do; he is against arrogant, inflated self-esteem that looks down on others. We must acknowledge God as the source of our lives. How do you show others that God is your source of satisfaction?

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