New American Bible (Revised Edition)
Tyre and Sidon
1 [a]Oracle on Tyre:
Wail, ships of Tarshish,
for your port is destroyed;
From the land of the Kittim[b]
the news reaches them.(A)
2 Silence! you who dwell on the coast,
you merchants of Sidon,
Whose messengers crossed the sea
3 over the deep waters,
Whose revenue was the grain of Shihor,[c] the harvest of the Nile,
you who were the merchant among the nations.(B)
4 Be ashamed, Sidon, fortress on the sea,
for the sea[d] has spoken,
“I have not been in labor, nor given birth,
nor raised young men,
nor reared young women.”
5 When the report reaches Egypt
they shall be in anguish at the report about Tyre.
6 Pass over to Tarshish,[e]
wail, you who dwell on the coast!
7 Is this your exultant city,
whose origin is from old,
Whose feet have taken her
to dwell in distant lands?
8 Who has planned such a thing
against Tyre, the bestower of crowns,
Whose merchants are princes,
whose traders are the earth’s honored men?
9 The Lord of hosts has planned it,
to disgrace the height of all beauty,
to degrade all the honored of the earth.(C)
10 Cross to your own land,
ship of Tarshish;
the harbor is no more.
11 His hand he stretches out over the sea,
he shakes kingdoms;
The Lord commanded the destruction
of Canaan’s strongholds:[f](D)
12 Crushed, you shall exult no more,
virgin daughter Sidon.
Arise, pass over to the Kittim,
even there you shall find no rest.(E)
13 [g]Look at the land of the Chaldeans,
the people that has ceased to be.
Assyria founded it for ships,
raised its towers,
Only to tear down its palaces,
and turn it into a ruin.(F)
14 Lament, ships of Tarshish,
for your stronghold is destroyed.
15 On that day, Tyre shall be forgotten for seventy years,[h] the lifetime of one king. At the end of seventy years, the song about the prostitute will be Tyre’s song:
16 Take a harp, go about the city,
Pluck the strings skillfully, sing many songs,
that you may be remembered.
17 At the end of the seventy years the Lord shall visit Tyre. She shall return to her hire and serve as prostitute[i] with all the world’s kingdoms on the face of the earth.(G) 18 But her merchandise and her hire shall be sacred to the Lord. It shall not be stored up or laid away; instead, her merchandise shall belong to those who dwell before the Lord, to eat their fill and clothe themselves in choice attire.
- 23:1–17 This oracle, a satire directed against the Phoenician cities of Tyre and Sidon, is perhaps to be situated at the time of Sennacherib’s campaign against the Phoenican cities in 701 B.C, following his subjugation of their Babylonian allies in 703 B.C.
- 23:1 Kittim: Cyprus. The Hebrew word is derived from the term for the well-known city of Cyprus, Kition. In later centuries the term Kittim is used for the Greeks, the Romans, and other distant peoples.
- 23:3 Shihor: a synonym for the Nile.
- 23:4 The sea: here personified, it brings to distant coasts the news that Sidon must disown her children; her people are dispersed.
- 23:6–7 Tarshish: perhaps Tartessus in Spain. Distant lands: the reference is to the far-flung colonies established by the Phoenicians throughout the Mediterranean, including North Africa, Spain, and Sardinia. Oceangoing vessels were therefore called Tarshish ships.
- 23:11 Canaan’s strongholds: the fortresses of Phoenicia.
- 23:13 The reference here seems to be to Assyria’s subjugation of Babylon in 703 B.C., which left the coastal cities of Phoenicia as well as Judah open to Sennacherib’s invasion in 701 B.C. Founded it…its palaces…turn it: the city of Babylon.
- 23:15 Seventy years: a conventional expression for a long period of time; cf. Jer 25:11 and 29:10.
- 23:17–18 Her hire…prostitute: the international trade engaged in by Tyre will become a source of wealth to God’s people (cf. 45:14; 60:4–14; Zec 14:14).
New International Version
A Prophecy Against Tyre
23 A prophecy against Tyre:(A)
2 Be silent,(F) you people of the island
and you merchants(G) of Sidon,(H)
whom the seafarers have enriched.
3 On the great waters
came the grain of the Shihor;(I)
the harvest of the Nile[a](J) was the revenue of Tyre,(K)
and she became the marketplace of the nations.
4 Be ashamed, Sidon,(L) and you fortress of the sea,
for the sea has spoken:
“I have neither been in labor nor given birth;(M)
I have neither reared sons nor brought up daughters.”
5 When word comes to Egypt,
they will be in anguish(N) at the report from Tyre.(O)
6 Cross over to Tarshish;(P)
wail, you people of the island.
7 Is this your city of revelry,(Q)
the old, old city,
whose feet have taken her
to settle in far-off lands?
8 Who planned this against Tyre,
the bestower of crowns,
whose merchants(R) are princes,
whose traders(S) are renowned in the earth?
9 The Lord Almighty planned(T) it,
to bring down(U) her pride in all her splendor
and to humble(V) all who are renowned(W) on the earth.
10 Till[b] your land as they do along the Nile,
for you no longer have a harbor.
11 The Lord has stretched out his hand(X) over the sea
and made its kingdoms tremble.(Y)
He has given an order concerning Phoenicia
that her fortresses be destroyed.(Z)
12 He said, “No more of your reveling,(AA)
Virgin Daughter(AB) Sidon, now crushed!
“Up, cross over to Cyprus;(AC)
even there you will find no rest.”
13 Look at the land of the Babylonians,[c](AD)
this people that is now of no account!
The Assyrians(AE) have made it
a place for desert creatures;(AF)
they raised up their siege towers,(AG)
they stripped its fortresses bare
and turned it into a ruin.(AH)
16 “Take up a harp, walk through the city,
you forgotten prostitute;(AN)
play the harp well, sing many a song,
so that you will be remembered.”
17 At the end of seventy years,(AO) the Lord will deal with Tyre. She will return to her lucrative prostitution(AP) and will ply her trade with all the kingdoms on the face of the earth.(AQ) 18 Yet her profit and her earnings will be set apart for the Lord;(AR) they will not be stored up or hoarded. Her profits will go to those who live before the Lord,(AS) for abundant food and fine clothes.(AT)