An arrangement of three large boulders is huddled among my Rudbeckias and Helianthus, their tops shining white in the morning sun. At summer’s end, gathering seeds from the flowers for next year, I found the middle stone to be a nice place to spread them out to dry.
It’s a cozy place to do some garden tasks, or just sit and reflect. I can’t imagine the east garden without them.
What if your home or city was spoken against, and you were warned that it would become a bare rock? A place where fishermen spread their nets to dry?
The ancient city of Tyre came up in a casual conversation with a few fourth graders. As we discussing reasons to believe the Bible, I recalled this fulfilled prophecy as one I had successfully used to show my Dad that the God of the Bible has shown himself to be absolutely trustworthy.
“They will destroy the walls of Tyre and break down her towers; and I will scrape her debris from her and make her a bare rock. She will be a place for the spreading of nets in the midst of the sea” (Ezekiel 26:4-5a, NASB).
The story of this city is nothing short of astounding. The mathematical odds for the prophecies of Ezekiel 26 are close to impossible. Probability is estimated at one in 75 million!
The destruction of the city happened in stages, as the Bible predicted. First, Nebuchadnezzar laid siege to the city from 585 to 573 B.C.. But by the time he entered Tyre, the population had fled to a small island about a half mile offshore. The invading armies destroyed the city on the mainland.
In 322 BC Alexander the Great threw the debris from the mainland ruins into the sea to create a causeway. In doing so, he fulfilled the unlikeliest of Ezekiel’s prophecies in verse 4.
Tyre was finally completely destroyed in A.D. 1291, and never rebuilt, as Ezekiel foretold. While there is a city with that name, it is not at the site of the Tyre that was thrown into the sea!
Today, a fishing village is on the actual site of old Tyre. “For the spreading of nets.”
I spread my rudbeckia seeds out to dry on the top of my rock, and consider how faithful our God is! He is faithful to keep bringing forth beautiful flowers from these seeds, but also faithful to execute vengeance on those who do not heed his voice.
My large stones were dug from the neighbor’s yard, from a gentle slope of their backyard where they wanted a level place to park their recreational vehicle. Anywhere you dig around here you are likely to find such rocks.
It makes me think how shallow the source of nourishment is for my plants…and indeed, for us. Are we like the residents of Tyre, going about thinking we have no need for God? Our lives and our amassed wealth can be just as easily scraped off of its place, as was the once-great seaport of Tyre.
The important thing to learn from the prophecy about Tyre is that the God of the Bible is the God of the cosmos, the God of the universe, the God of every cell, atom, electron, and quark that is in us. He not only controls the destinies of man and of governments, he has often foretold them. Will we listen to what he has said about us?