The overthrow of Tyre. (1-14) It is established again. (15-18)
Verses 1-14 Tyre was the mart of the nations. She was noted for mirth and diversions; and this made her loth to consider the warnings God gave by his servants. Her merchants were princes, and lived like princes. Tyre being destroyed and laid waste, the merchants should abandon her. Flee to shift for thine own safety; but those that are uneasy in one place, will be so in another; for when God's judgments pursue sinners, they will overtake them. Whence shall all this trouble come? It is a destruction from the Almighty. God designed to convince men of the vanity and uncertainty of all earthly glory. Let the ruin of Tyre warn all places and persons to take heed of pride; for he who exalts himself shall be abased. God will do it, who has all power in his hand; but the Chaldeans shall be the instruments.
Verses 15-18 The desolations of Tyre were not to be for ever. The Lord will visit Tyre in mercy. But when set at liberty, she will use her old arts of temptation. The love of worldly wealth is spiritual idolatry; and covetousness is spiritual idolatry. This directs those that have wealth, to use it in the service of God. When we abide with God in our worldly callings, when we do all in our power to further the gospel, then our merchandise and hire are holiness to the Lord, if we look to his glory. Christians should carry on business as God's servants, and use riches as his stewards.
This chapter gives an account both of the desolation and restoration of Tyre, an ancient city of Phoenicia. Its desolation is described as so complete, that a house was not left in it, Isa 23:1 and by the fewness and stillness of the inhabitants of it, with which it had been replenished, it having been a mart of nations, Isa 23:2,3 and by the shame and pain Zidon, a neighbouring city, was put into, on account of it, Isa 23:4,5 and by the removal of its inhabitants to other places, Isa 23:6,7,12 all which is attributed to the counsel, purpose, and commandment of God, to destroy it; whose view was to stain their pride, and bring them into contempt, Isa 23:8-11 the means and instruments made use of to this purpose were the Assyrians or Chaldeans, Isa 23:13 and its desolation is further aggravated by the loss of its trade; hence the merchants of other countries are called to mourning, Isa 23:1,14 the date and duration of this desolation were seventy years, Isa 23:15 after which it should be restored, and its merchandise and commerce with all the nations of the earth be revived again, Isa 23:15-18.