New Defender's Study Bible Notes
28:2 prince of Tyrus. The “prince of Tyrus” at the time of Ezekiel’s prophecy is believed to have been Ethbaal III. In any case, this monarch obviously must have been extremely proud and arrogant, even claiming to be God.
28:2 I am a God. It would seem insanity for any man to think he is God, except for the pantheistic context in which such assertions are made. Both ancient pagan religions and most modern ethnic religions, as well as the various New Age cults today, believe that the cosmos is its own creator and that men, as the highest products of its processes, are in union with the cosmic consciousness, “as gods” (Genesis 3:5). It is easy, then, for some great leader to go further and believe that he is the greatest of the gods.
28:3 Daniel. Daniel’s reputation was already widely known to his contemporaries, even as far away from Babylon as Tyre, yet the king of Tyre, being “god,” thought himself wiser than Daniel.
28:12 king of Tyrus. This new section of the prophecy is directed against “the king of Tyrus” rather than “the prince of Tyrus” (Ezekiel 28:2), and the whole tenor of the prophecy indicates that a different personage is in view. In fact, the description of this person could not be applied literally to any human being, no matter how rich or powerful or proud. Yet the one is obviously in some sense an extension of the description of the human “prince.”
28:13 Eden. No one was in Eden, the garden of God, except Adam and Eve, plus Satan. We are forced to conclude that this “king of Tyrus” is none other than Satan, personally possessing and controlling the willing body of the proud “prince of Tyrus.” Just as he possessed the body of the “king of Babylon” (see notes on Isaiah 14:12-15) and the body of Judas (Luke 22:3), he was able to possess and control the Tyrian monarch. His strategy in first personally taking control of an earlier king of Babylon and then the prince of Tyre, rather than leaving them to lower powers in the demonic hierarchy, probably had to do with the great military influence developing in Babylon and the preeminent economic influence of Phoenicia. By controlling the leaders of these two world powers, he could largely control the world, firmly establishing his anti-God materialistic, pantheistic, evolutionistic religious system almost everywhere. In this, he had largely succeeded.
28:13 precious stone. The description of this Eden, emphasizing precious stones, seems quite different from the tree-filled garden described in Genesis 2; probably the earthly Eden was prepared by God as a terrestrial model of His own Eden in heaven. When He finally was forced to expel Adam and Eve from the garden, He left the cherubims there to guard its entrance.
28:13 created. The mighty being addressed here was clearly of the angelic order, for he had been “created,” not born. This statement could not have been true of an earthly king of Tyre.
28:14 anointed cherub. The “anointed cherub” on God’s “holy mountain,” covering the heavenly Eden and God’s throne, was evidently the highest of the cherubim and, therefore, the highest of all God’s created angels.
28:15 perfect in thy ways. This being was of incomparable beauty and wisdom (Ezekiel 28:17), “perfect in all his ways,” causing his heart to be “lifted up” to attempt to displace His own Creator (see Isaiah 14:12-15).
28:15 iniquity. When iniquity was found in this perfect being—evidently the sin of rebellion against God—he who had been Lucifer (“Light-Bearer”) became Satan (“The Adversary”), and has remained God’s greatest foe ever since.
28:17 corrupted thy wisdom. Satan’s incomparable wisdom became corrupt when he deceived himself into thinking he could become God. He has attempted to deceive men and women ever since, persuading them (as he did Eve) that they also could be “as gods” (Genesis 3:5), but he had deceived himself most of all. His corrupted wisdom somehow persuaded him that he and God were the same type of being and, therefore, that he could displace God by leading a revolt of the angels under his command. This plan could be rationalized only by his assuming that both he and God had by some unknown process “evolved” out of the primeval waters which had been the environment of his first consciousness, when God created him. This is suggested not only from Genesis 1:2, but in all the most ancient pagan cosmogonies (Sumeria, Egypt, etc.), for which Satan must have been primarily responsible. Thus, Satan’s corrupted wisdom devised the primeval system of pantheistic evolutionism with which he has been corrupting and deceiving the world ever since.
28:17 to the ground. When he rebelled against God in the heavenly Eden (sometime after the six days of creation, for everything in heaven and earth was still “very good” at that point in time—Genesis 1:31–2:3), God “cast him to the ground”—that is, “to the earth”—where He allowed him to test Adam and Eve in their earthly Eden, to see whether they also would rebel against God’s Word, and seek to be gods themselves.
28:19 never shalt thou be. The final salvo in Ezekiel’s prophecy against the Satan-possessed king of Tyre returns in part to the coming demise of the arrogant earthly monarch. His calamitous defeat by the invading Babylonians would be a type of defeat that Satan himself would suffer in the ultimate day of the Lord.
28:21 Zidon. Tyre’s sister city in Phoenicia was also to be conquered by Nebuchadnezzar. Sidon, in fact, was older than Tyre (although Tyre had surpassed it in importance and wealth), for it had been founded by a son of Canaan himself (Genesis 10:15), and had been notoriously wicked through all the centuries since. It was not to be destroyed like Tyre, however, but would be subjected frequently to violence and pestilence (Ezekiel 28:23). It still survives today, but has been the scene of bloody fighting in almost endless wars and battles throughout the past 2500 years; that is still true today in Lebanon, where it is located in the modern world.