Ezekiel 28:15
From the day you were created you were blameless in your ways--until wickedness was found in you.
Man in Impressive AspectsW. Jones Ezekiel 28:11-19
The Glory and Shame of Eden ReproducedJ.D. Davies Ezekiel 28:11-19
The Insufficiency of Circumstance, EtcW. Clarkson Ezekiel 28:11-19
The Religious Claims of the British ColoniesW. B. Collyer, D. D.Ezekiel 28:14-16

There is no reason why we should not regard the biblical narrative of Adam's trial and fall as fact and as allegory also. There is no real discrepancy between these two principles of interpretation. We are bound to accept it as a narrative of historical fact. Yet it is also an outline picture of every man's history. In each man's case there is the Edenic period of innocence, there is the crisis of first temptation, there is the fall, and then the banishment from Edenic joy. The circumstances of the first probation are more clearly and vividly reproduced in the case of a young prince than in any other. Hence the application to the King of Tyre.

I. THE KING CONSIDERED AS THE IDEAL MAN. Adam was placed in Eden as a monarch. He was placed in dominion over all creatures in earth, or air, or sea. This gave him a great "coin of vantage." In this respect he was made after the pattern of God - he was God-like. All that ministered to his needs was within his reach. Not a thing was denied to him that could meet a want or satisfy a just desire. His home was stored with every form of beauteous vegetation and with every kind of precious gem. And he was priest as well as king. He had access to God at all times. In him creation was summed up. In a similar position was the King of Tyrus placed. All material good was within his reach. There was no temptation to acquire wealth by unlawful means. Tyre and its possessions were to him as a garden, over which he could roam at large, He stood towards men in the stead of God - the dispenser of truth and justice. He was gifted with robust health and with abundant wisdom. He had all that heart could wish. He was placed in an Eden of abundance - "in Eden, the garden of God." Like Adam, he was on his trial.

II. THE TEMPTATION. To every man temptation comes. If his heart be not set upon the acquisition of spiritual riches - wisdom, holiness, and love - he will desire inordinately the lower good, and will break through lawful restraints in order to possess it. This is the core and essence of temptation. In this way the King of Tyre was tested. He was set up by God to exemplify righteousness, and to administer justice among the people. Nor among his own subjects only, but from his high position "the mountain of God" - he could have disseminated righteous principles among all the nations with whom Tyre traded. Yet in this respect the king egregiously failed. His love of gain was too great - was excessive. It overmastered his love of righteousness. What advantage he could not gain by fair and legitimate methods he extorted by violence. This is clear from Ver. 16, "By the multitude of thy merchandise they have filled the midst of thee with violence." If the king personally was not the prime instigator of these deeds, he connived at them through unprincipled or corrupt judges. His prosperity and glory made him vain and arrogant. Temptation came to pluck the forbidden fruit, and the king weakly yielded.

III. THE CRIME. The crime was selfishness, covetousness, avarice. This favored and fortunate man was placed in the possession of abundance. There was one thing he might not do. He might not rob others to enrich himself. The possessions of the foreigner ought to have been as much respected and protected as his own. But the devil whispered in his ear counsels of unrighteous enrichment, and he listened, wavered, succumbed. "Iniquity was found in thee." "Thou hast corrupted thy wisdom;" i.e. thou hast twisted it into cunning and craftiness. "Thou hast defiled thy sanctuaries by the multitude of thine iniquities, by the iniquity of thy traffic." He had imagined that no higher power than himself would supervise his deeds. "God is not observant of such things," said his wily tempter. "Thou shalt not surely die." This was his crime. His very brightness - his prosperity - brought him into scenes of new temptation. He might have blessed mankind; but he was set on selfish ends. He was in indecent haste to aggrandize self. He trampled on others' rights, on law and order, that he might swell his self-importance. He chafed against the idea that he, a king, was only a subject to a higher scepter. He would brook no interference with his proud will. This was his crime.

IV. THE RAVISHMENT. "I will cast thee as profane out of the mountain of God.... I will cast thee to the ground, I will lay thee before kings, that they may behold thee." The exclusion from Eden is here repeated. The changes of fortune through which Adam passed, every one, in a measure, passes through also. "I will bring forth a fire from the midst of thee." No heavier punishment can be passed upon a man than banishment from God's favor. Where God is, there is safety; where God is not, there is ruin. Where God is, there is heaven; where he is not, there is hell. To be forsaken of God - this is despair and woe. God departed from Saul, and straightway he began to descend the slippery plane that landed him in destruction. Appearances are very delusive. The eye is easily deceived. Beneath a fair exterior of prosperity there is often incipient decay, yea, corruption hastening to final ruin. "Pride goeth before a fall." If we have made God our foe, not all the alliances and intrigues in the universe can save us from destruction. - D.

Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God.
Let Britain recognise, not merely the elements of her greatness in her commercial relations, but the type of her majesty in a state, planted like itself in the midst of the seas, enthroned queen of the nations whom she overshadowed with her powers. Let her look at the character of her own crimes, and consider the peril of corresponding visitations; let her look to her obligations and her responsibilities; and, as the chief of these, hearken to the claims of her colonies.

I. THE OBLIGATIONS ARISING FROM HER POSITION. "Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth," etc. If this glowing and magnificent description was true of Tyre, it can lose nothing in its application to Britain. In arts and in arms, in commerce and in agriculture, in facility of local position and fertility of soil — secure from invasion, prolific in produce, rich in cultivation, replenished with merchandise, powerful in political relations, redundant in population — above all, unrivalled in religious advantages; all these secured by a civil constitution peculiar to herself, balancing the national interests, and destroying the elements of internal discord and division: what more can be enjoyed to give national prosperity and preeminence? But whence flows the tide of greatness? and to whom is Britain indebted for her supremacy? It is not self-produced; it cannot be self-sustained: "I have set thee so." Not to know, not to feel, not to acknowledge this, is the source of national decay and ruin. We are exalted to sovereignty, and entrusted with dominion, that the parent state may be to her widely spread and numerous colonies "the anointed cherub that covereth." She owes them political protection, to gather them under her wings, like the eagle: but she owes them also religious instruction; she should engage in a holy traffic, infinitely advantageous to them, and, for the wealth which they pour into her bosom, repay them with durable riches and righteousness.

II. THE RESPONSIBILITY OF HER VAST EXTENT OF TERRITORY. The statesman may contemplate this prodigious dependency upon the crown of his country with unmixed emotions of pride and exultation; I see in it, primarily, a corresponding magnitude of national responsibility. It were superfluous here to recount the names and localities of her dominions; but it is of importance to call to mind that the colonial territory of Britain has put under her responsibility not only so many more bodies, but so many more souls; that it is not over inert matter, but over spirit and life, that she rules; that a population vastly surpassing her own is of equal value with her own; that one immortal spirit of all these millions is of more worth than the material universe, and must remain indestructible, in happiness or misery, when the heavens are no more; and that the present all-fluctuating, transient, uncertain existence is the only period to fix its destiny irreversibly and forever. Her responsibility is heightened by the moral condition of that vast extent of territory over which she rules; and which, participating the depravity of fallen nature, common to all presents peculiarities of corruption or of destitution characteristic of the particular states in which they are respectively placed.

III. THE REPARATION DUE FROM OPPRESSORS. "Iniquity was found in thee. By the multitude of thy merchandise they have filled the midst of thee with violence, and thou hast sinned." Ambition has been charged, and justly charged, with trampling upon the rights and liberties of mankind, turning the fruitful land into barrenness, beating down with unsparing force and cruelty whatever withstood its advance, outraging every principle, if expediency required its sacrifice, wasting human life remorselessly in furtherance of its plans, and deluging the earth with blood. What has Commerce to say, in answer to the accusation, should every one of these imputations be alleged against her? Have her crimes been fewer? Have the injuries inflicted upon society been less aggravated, and has the love of money been less powerful than the love of fame? Has the lust of dominion been more persevering and reckless than the cupidity of accumulation? Let the colonies of Britain, even Christian Britain, stand forth and give their testimony, in vindication of the sentiment of the text. It is true, much is without remedy: the early victims of oppression are out of the reach of the oppressor; even a nation's repentance cannot recall a single departed spirit from its dreadful abode; but the children are in the place of the fathers. A debt of crime is incurred which the consecrated energies of the nation alone can repay; let the inheritors of the wrongs of their ancestors remove and redress all their grievances in the ample compensation which the parent state has it yet in her power to effect, in sending to them the glad tidings of salvation. The slave trade has been abolished in vain, and in vain are you now proclaiming liberty to the captive, if this great obligation be neglected. You have not given freedom to the slave thoroughly until you have given him the Gospel; heavier, invisible, infrangible chains remain when you have taken the yoke from his shoulders and struck the fetters from his limbs.

IV. THE SENTENCE PRONOUNCED AGAINST NATIONAL GUILT. "I will cast thee as profane out of the mountain of God," etc. This judgment proceeds on two principles. The one is a personal degradation: "I will cast thee as profane out of the mountain of God." It is national irreligion. The privileges of the Gospel have been neglected or despised; they shall be removed; they shall be insulted no longer; the prosperity that made them of no account shall be withdrawn also. The other principle on which judgment proceeds is relative, commercial, colonial, bears expressly upon the point discussed. "Thou hast defiled thy sanctuaries," etc. Every part of this sentence is full of meaning. It is the soul that has been trifled with; it is the blood of souls that is required; it is the blood of the souls of "poor innocents," who knew not what they did, abandoned to ignorance, to negligence, to misery. The negligence is palpable, multiplied; the consequences deplorable; yet insensibility and security fortify the guilty city, even in the midst of impending retribution; and they justify themselves under the scrutiny of that eye from which nothing can be concealed. The judgment threatened is just. Again, as in a glass, the crimes, the danger, and the duty of the country are alike apparent, and the religious claims of her colonies depicted. Jerusalem is not, because of these oppressions, combined with this other neglect of the souls of those depending upon her; and shall we altogether escape?

V. AN IRRESISTIBLE APPEAL TO HER CHRISTIAN PRINCIPLES. "Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God." This is the highest of all possible distinctions; the greatest of all possible blessings. And if it were but a presumptuous imagination in the heart of the king of Tyre, or a figure the strongest that could be imagined, of security and felicity, it is unquestionably a reality with us, a reality in respect to privilege; whether a reality in respect to principle, remains to be perceived, and will be determined by the hold which the appeal, So irresistible in its own nature, made to these principles in reference to these claims, shall have upon the conviction, the concurrence. and the energies of the nation at large, and upon the hearts, consciences, and exertions of professors of religion in particular. For it is the work of the nation, and it is the work of the nation in her magnitude, and it has wherewithal to occupy all the labour and talent that can be brought to bear upon it. Here differences should be merged in the prominent object of general concernment, of universal utility, and faithful allegiance to our common Lord. Here, if ever, all envy and strife, all doubts and surmisings, all malice and evil speaking — at all times so unbecoming the Gospel of Christ, so unworthy Christian character, so hateful in themselves, so pernicious in their effects, so opposed to the spirit of our Master — should be laid aside; remembering, that during the time that is consumed in contention the work of God must stand still. Here there should be no emulation, but such as should call forth holy ardour and brotherly affections and stir up to love and to good works.

(W. B. Collyer, D. D.)

Daniel, Ezekiel, Jacob, Zidon
Sidon, Tigris-Euphrates Region, Tyre
Blameless, Created, Evil, Iniquity, Perfect, Perversity, Produced, Sin, Till, Unrighteousness, Wast, Wickedness
1. God's judgment upon the prince of Tyrus for his sacrilegious pride
11. A lamentation of his great glory corrupted by Sidon
20. The judgment of Zion
24. The restoration of Israel

Dictionary of Bible Themes
Ezekiel 28:15

     6157   fall, of Satan

Ezekiel 28:12-17

     8322   perfection, human

Ezekiel 28:12-19

     5899   lament
     8483   spiritual warfare, causes

Ezekiel 28:13-19

     5033   knowledge, of good and evil

Palm Sunday
Text: Philippians 2, 5-11. 5 Have this mind in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: 6 who, existing in the form of God, counted not the being on an equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied himself, taking the form of a servant, being made in the likeness of men; 8 and being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, becoming obedient even unto death, yea, the death of the cross. 9 Wherefore also God highly exalted him, and gave unto him the name which is above every name; 10 that
Martin Luther—Epistle Sermons, Vol. II

The Doctrine of Satan.
Rev. William Evans—The Great Doctrines of the Bible

Concerning Persecution
Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 5:10 We are now come to the last beatitude: Blessed are they which are persecuted . . '. Our Lord Christ would have us reckon the cost. Which of you intending to build a tower sitteth not down first and counteth the cost, whether he have enough to finish it?' (Luke 14:28). Religion will cost us the tears of repentance and the blood of persecution. But we see here a great encouragement that may
Thomas Watson—The Beatitudes: An Exposition of Matthew 5:1-12

Sign Seekers, and the Enthusiast Reproved.
(Galilee on the Same Day as the Last Section.) ^A Matt. XII. 38-45; ^C Luke XI. 24-36. ^c 29 And when the multitudes were gathering together unto him, ^a 38 Then certain of the scribes and Pharisees answered him, saying, Teacher, we would see a sign from thee. [Having been severely rebuked by Jesus, it is likely that the scribes and Pharisees asked for a sign that they might appear to the multitude more fair-minded and open to conviction than Jesus had represented them to be. Jesus had just wrought
J. W. McGarvey—The Four-Fold Gospel

To a modern taste, Ezekiel does not appeal anything like so powerfully as Isaiah or Jeremiah. He has neither the majesty of the one nor the tenderness and passion of the other. There is much in him that is fantastic, and much that is ritualistic. His imaginations border sometimes on the grotesque and sometimes on the mechanical. Yet he is a historical figure of the first importance; it was very largely from him that Judaism received the ecclesiastical impulse by which for centuries it was powerfully
John Edgar McFadyen—Introduction to the Old Testament

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