9 The lord of Hosts planned it— To defile all glorious beauty, To shame all the honored of the world.
a-do-NAI tz’-va-OT y’-a-TZAH l’-kha-LAYL g’-ON kol tz’-VEE l’-ha-KAYL kol nikh-ba-day A-retz
ט יְהֹוָה צְבָאוֹת יְעָצָהּ לְחַלֵּל גְּאוֹן כָּל־צְבִי לְהָקֵל כָּל־נִכְבַּדֵּי־אָרֶץ׃
23:9 To defile all glorious beauty
Yeshayahu concludes his prophecies against the nations with a description of the impending downfall of Tyre. Just as Babylon and Assyria represented the pinnacle of military might in the ancient world, Tyre represented the height of commercial power and riches. Based on the coast of what is today Lebanon, Tyre established trading colonies throughout the Mediterranean Sea, as far away as Spain. Verses 1-7 describe how the shocking news of Tyre’s downfall would reverberate throughout the ancient world. Yeshayahu places the blame for the downfall on Tyre’s sense of pride; rather than being thankful to Hashem who granted them riches, they viewed themselves as a great power. This idea of pride is a common theme throughout the prophecies of Yeshayahu. In chapter 2, he describes the pride of Israel as being the source of their sins which ultimately lead to their exile. When humanity abandons its arrogance and recognizes God’s goodness, He will again reveal Himself to the world.