There are some obscure events in the Bible which have such profound lessons, yet it is easy to overlook them. We often rob ourselves of the treasures which could enrich our lives. These stories give such great insight into our God and how He deals with mankind. One of these stories concerns Nebuchadnezzar, the Babylonian king who conquered and destroyed Jerusalem in the days of Daniel.
First, a history lesson. The city of Tyre was the major port city of the ancient kingdom of the Phoenicians. It had a major role in shaping many events in the Old Testament world. As Babylon and King Nebuchadnezzar were reaching great heights, Nebuchadnezzar brought his army and besieged the city.
The Bible prophesied that God would use Babylon (Ezekiel 26) as His army to punish the wicked inhabitants of Tyre for this wickedness. For thirteen years (598-585 B.C.), Nebuchadnezzar’s army attempted to conquer the city, but just before it fell, those in the city removed its treasures by using their ships, and when the army entered the city, there was little left for them. God had used His servant Nebuchadnezzar (see Jer. 25:9), to accomplish His will and bring destruction on Tyre.
This Babylonian king continued to spread the borders of his kingdom, conquering Jerusalem, and the great wealth of Egypt lay before him. Read carefully these words from Ezekiel and learn one of those great truths so many often overlook.
“Son of man, Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon caused his army to labor strenuously against Tyre; every head was made bald, and every shoulder rubbed raw; yet neither he nor his army received wages from Tyre, for the labor which they expended on it. Therefore thus says the Lord GOD: ‘Surely I will give the land of Egypt to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon; he shall take away her wealth, carry off her spoil, and remove her pillage; and that will be the wages for his army. I have given him the land of Egypt for his labor, because they worked for Me,’ says the Lord GOD” (Eze. 29:18-20).
Herein lies a great story giving us such insight into the nature of our God. God had used a pagan king and his army to do His will, yet His nature demanded that wages be given to them. Those wages did not come from Tyre, but from the vast treasures of Egypt.
Now think about it. If God does not overlook the service given by pagans, just imagine how He sees the service His children give to Him. Think of a cup of cold water being given in His name! God sees it all. Whatever we sow, we will reap. Rest assured, He will reward His children!