Ezekial 26 was way off the mark on Tyre
I apologize in advance for what follows. I wanted to be sure no one could accuse me of taking anything out of context, so here's all of the context. Also I like to have all of the verses presented with the information based on them so I thought I would provide the same courtesy here. Ezekial 26 is a 21 verse chapter which primarily focuses on a prophecy by Ezekial against the city of Tyre located in modern day Lebanon. (Eze 26:2) Son of man, because that Tyrus hath said against Jerusalem, Aha, she is broken that was the gates of the people: she is turned unto me: I shall be replenished, now she is laid waste: (Eze 26:3) Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, O Tyrus, and will cause many nations to come up against thee, as the sea causeth his waves to come up.
(Eze 26:1) And it came to pass in the eleventh year, in the first day of the month, that the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
I apologize in advance for what follows. I wanted to be sure no one could accuse me of taking anything out of context, so here's all of the context. Also I like to have all of the verses presented with the information based on them so I thought I would provide the same courtesy here. Ezekial 26 is a 21 verse chapter which primarily focuses on a prophecy by Ezekial against the city of Tyre located in modern day Lebanon.
(Eze 26:2) Son of man, because that Tyrus hath said against Jerusalem, Aha, she is broken that was the gates of the people: she is turned unto me: I shall be replenished, now she is laid waste:
(Eze 26:3) Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, O Tyrus, and will cause many nations to come up against thee, as the sea causeth his waves to come up.
Only Ezekial 26:3 is worth commenting on here. It's worth commenting that many nations did come up against Tyre, The egyptians attacked Tyre many times, Salmanesser V, an Assyrian king, beseiged Tyre for 5 years (724-720 BC) aided by the Phoenecians, The Assyrian king Sennacherib attempted a seige on Tyre in 701 BC, Another Assyrian king, Ashurbanipal, also beseiged Tyre in 663 BC, Nebuchadnezzer II beseiged Tyre for 13 years (585-570 BC), and Alexander the Great beseiged Tyre for 7 months (332 BC) and became the first to actually conquor the city. It's also interesting to note that this prophecy is about Nebuchadnezzer, so this part of the prophecy hardly counts as prophetic, It's basically a prophecy saying that what has happened many times in the past, the Egyptians and Salmanesser V, will happen in the future. So now we see that the only part of this prophecy that even appears to have come true on even a close inspection, on closer inspection actually has not, or in this case, was not even prophetic.
(Eze 26:4) And they shall destroy the walls of Tyrus, and break down her towers: I will also scrape her dust from her, and make her like the top of a rock.
The walls of Tyre were breached by Alexander the Great but Alexander did not destroy the city of Tyre. I should now point out that the City of Tyre was divided into two distinct parts, there was the continental part of Tyre and the Island part of Tyre. The Island city was the main part of the city contrary to what I am often told when I point out this failed prophecy. One clue is the fact that despite all of the many past seiges before Alexander's getting into the continental city the Tyrians considered that their city had never been conquored because no one before Alexander ever managed to conquor the island. That's a pretty strong hint that the Tyrians themselves considered the island to be the most important part of the city. There's also the fact that the major temples were located on the island not the continent. So here we have a part where it says that Tyre would be made like the top of a rock. Alexander the Great sort of did that to the continental portion of the city so people like to point to that and say this happened. They ignore the fact that the prophecy states that this will happen to the entire city of Tyre, which never happened. This part of the prophecy is another failed part. The walls of tyre were never destroyed, only breached, the towers were never broken down, though some may have been, and the city was not make like the top of a rock though the continental part sort of was...it did still have dust, Alexander the Great was only interested in the rocks and the lumber.
(Eze 26:5) It shall be a place for the spreading of nets in the midst of the sea: for I have spoken it, saith the Lord GOD: and it shall become a spoil to the nations.
(Eze 26:6) And her daughters which are in the field shall be slain by the sword; and they shall know that I am the LORD.
(Eze 26:7) For thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will bring upon Tyrus Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, a king of kings, from the north, with horses, and with chariots, and with horsemen, and companies, and much people.
Verse 7 is the part where it introduces the one who God has sent to do all of these things, and it isn't Alexander the Great. Everything that follows was supposed to have been done by Nebuchadnezzar...oddly enough nothing that follows was done by Nebuchadnezzar.
(Eze 26: He shall slay with the sword thy daughters in the field: and he shall make a fort against thee, and cast a mount against thee, and lift up the buckler against thee.
Note that it's started to get repetitive? I smell a redaction.
(Eze 26:9) And he shall set engines of war against thy walls, and with his axes he shall break down thy towers.
Two more things Nebuchadnezzar never did and actually never happened at all.
(Eze 26:10) By reason of the abundance of his horses their dust shall cover thee: thy walls shall shake at the noise of the horsemen, and of the wheels, and of the chariots, when he shall enter into thy gates, as men enter into a city wherein is made a breach.
Nebuchadnezzar never entered the city of Tyre. Also does this description sound like a failed 13 year seige to you?
(Eze 26:11) With the hooves of his horses shall he tread down all thy streets: he shall slay thy people by the sword, and thy strong garrisons shall go down to the ground.
How does an army tread down all of the streets of a city it never enters? The answer is...it doesn't, this part of the prophecy also failed. Unless you want to try to say it suddenly shifted from Nebuchadnezzar to Alexander the Great without so much as a word about it. The only way to argue that this part of the prophecy actually came true is to take it out of the context set by verse 7. Nothing that has followed verse 7 thus far has suggested that the "his" in this verse is anyone other than Nebuchadnezzar, and verse 7 explicitly states that it is.
(Eze 26:12) And they shall make a spoil of thy riches, and make a prey of thy merchandise: and they shall break down thy walls, and destroy thy pleasant houses: and they shall lay thy stones and thy timber and thy dust in the midst of the water.
Nebuchadnezzar never took Tyre's riches. He never entered the city.
(Eze 26:13) And I will cause the noise of thy songs to cease; and the sound of thy harps shall be no more heard.
The city remained inhabited after the 13 year seige by Nebuchadnezzar because Nebuchadnezzar never entered the city, so I would guess, and I don't think it would be an unreasonable guess, that the opposite of this verse happened after the end of the seige. My guess is that there was much singing and merry making after the seige was lifted. Not even Alexander the Great left Tyre uninhabited. It's important here to note, I think, that Tyre has not spent a day since its foundation uninhabited.
(Eze 26:14) And I will make thee like the top of a rock: thou shalt be a place to spread nets upon; thou shalt be built no more: for I the LORD have spoken it, saith the Lord GOD.
this verse says that Tyre shall be built no more. So here I think it fitting to link you to the modern city of Tyre: http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&geocode=&q=Lebanon&ie=UTF8&ll=33.272404,35.19717&spn=0.008073,0.019226&t=h&z=16
Crap...someone built there...Actually at one time someone actually tried to tell me that the modern city of Tyre doesn't exist and that Google Earth was wrong the bible was right...
(Eze 26:15) Thus saith the Lord GOD to Tyrus; Shall not the isles shake at the sound of thy fall, when the wounded cry, when the slaughter is made in the midst of thee?
(Eze 26:16) Then all the princes of the sea shall come down from their thrones, and lay away their robes, and put off their embroidered garments: they shall clothe themselves with trembling; they shall sit upon the ground, and shall tremble at every moment, and be astonished at thee.
(Eze 26:17) And they shall take up a lamentation for thee, and say to thee, How art thou destroyed, that wast inhabited of seafaring men, the renowned city, which wast strong in the sea, she and her inhabitants, which cause their terror to be on all that haunt it!
I don't think the unsuccessful 13 year seige had this effect considering that Tyre and its neighbors were still pagan when Alexander the Great came to the area about 200 years later.
(Eze 26:18) Now shall the isles tremble in the day of thy fall; yea, the isles that are in the sea shall be troubled at thy departure.
(Eze 26:19) For thus saith the Lord GOD; When I shall make thee a desolate city, like the cities that are not inhabited; when I shall bring up the deep upon thee, and great waters shall cover thee;
Also important to note that Tyre was never covered by water, in fact quite the opposite, Alexander the Great caused Tyre to gain more land. As you could see by looking at the google maps overview of Tyre it's no longer an island. Alexander the Great connected the island to the continent. So once again the opposite of what was prophecied is what actually happened.
(Eze 26:20) When I shall bring thee down with them that descend into the pit, with the people of old time, and shall set thee in the low parts of the earth, in places desolate of old, with them that go down to the pit, that thou be not inhabited; and I shall set glory in the land of the living;
This strikes me as just being a poetic way of saying he's sending them all to hell.
(Eze 26:21) I will make thee a terror, and thou shalt be no more: though thou be sought for, yet shalt thou never be found again, saith the Lord GOD.
I laugh particularly hard at this because I can find Tyre, now called Sur in case you were wondering, in just a few seconds in Google Earth.
As far as I can determine this prophecy has failed.