Ezekiel 38: Who is Tarshish?

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Ezekiel 38:13 Sheba and Dedan and the merchants of Tarshish and all its leaders will say to you, ‘Have you come to seize spoil? Have you assembled your hosts to carry off plunder, to carry away silver and gold, to take away livestock and goods, to seize great spoil?’

Tarshish is a term and concept that is somewhat of a riddle. No one really knows for sure where Tarshish is. But there are some educated observations. Tarshish is a Phoenician word from the Akkad meaning smelting plant or refinery. The term is used in connection with ships, merchants, and trade (I Kings 10:22, I Kings 22:48). Phoenician boats used to sail the sea regularly transporting smelted ores from the mining towns in Sardinia and Spain. A Phoenician inscription from Nora in Sardinia from the ninth century BC refers to a tarshish, or smelting site, on this island. Smeltery fleets or tarshish ships hauled material from this and other mining stations in the western Mediterranean. Ships of tarshish were built by Jehoshaphat in imitation of Solomon. -New Unger’s Bible Dictionary

Ships of Tarshish: A term applied to large seaworthy merchant vessels able to make the voyage to distant Tarshish (probably Sardinia, and secondarily also Spain) -Wycliffe Bible Commentary

Tarshish or Tharshish = “yellow jasper”

A city of the Phoenicians in a distant part of the Mediterranean Sea to which the prophet Jonah was trying to flee. Jonah was directed by God to go east to Ninnevah. Jonah was headed in the opposite direction, west to Tarshish. Site unknown but perhaps in Cyprus or Spain.  A city somewhere near and accessible to the Red Sea to which ships constructed at Ezion-geber on the Elanitic Gulf on the Red Sea were to sail. -Strong’s Concordance

Some maps show Tarshish to be west of the Straits of Gibralter on the southern shore of Spain.

Isaiah 23:1 The oracle concerning Tyre. Wail, O ships of Tarshish, for Tyre is laid waste, without house or harbor! From the land of Cyprus it is revealed to them.

Tyre is and was a modern day port city in Lebanon. Tarshish is in the context of a prophecy consistent with what is Lebanon. Cyprus is an island in the Mediterranean Sea west of Lebanon approximately 150 miles.

At any rate, Tarshish and others do not initiate with Magog and relatives. They do not rise up and protect Israel. These countries just question intent. Tarshish is a bystander and not much help to Israel.

 

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Paul Lehr

About Paul Lehr

Paul Lehr is a Speech Pathologist and home health provider. The majority of his work focuses on swallowing disorders in neurologically impaired patients. He has been a business owner for the past 18 years. Paul earned his BS in Speech Pathology and Audiology from Oklahoma State University. His MA was completed in Speech Pathology at Oklahoma State University. When Paul’s son was born prematurely in 2003, there was lots of support from family and friends. Keeping up with phone calls was too much. So he provided e-mails with updates on health and well-being. In time, his son was healthy and came home. The e-mails stopped but Paul was encouraged to keep writing. Three years later, Paul was asked to assist in writing a Sunday school curriculum. The lessons were well received by the local body and on the church website. Again, he was encouraged to keep writing. Next, Paul taught a Sunday School class for junior high and high school students. He would share notes with others from the class he was teaching. In 2010, a young man at a local church encouraged Paul to start a blog. The website focuses on topical studies such as creation, God’s Appointed Holidays and Feasts, the Gospel of Jesus Christ, end times prophecy, ancient Hebrew cultural customs, the Prophet Isaiah, and various topical studies. Three years later, Paul’s 10 year old son told me, “Dad, you need to do updates on how the news is tied to the Bible.” The “Trend Update” was born. Since then, traffic on the website doubled in each of the next two years. Exposure continues to grow and increase from the previous year as of 2016. In the spring of 2016, a friend and fellow Boy Scout father encouraged Paul to start a YouTube channel. His friend thought it was a natural fit considering the content and subscribers from the website. The videos and written posts have been well received. Between the blog and YouTube channel, God’s prophetic words have reached over 190 countries. Isaiah 55:11 So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth; it will not return to Me empty, without accomplishing what I desire, and without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it. Friends and family help and support the blog and YouTube channel with content ideas. There is too much happening in relation to Bible prophecy for one person to follow and command the events of our day. That same Boy Scout father would later introduce Paul to the movies of Trey Smith and the God in a Nutshell Project… Guest speak and presenter duties have focused on the topics of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in God’s Appointed Spring Feasts, Mystery Babylon, the antichrist, Ezekiel 38-39, and current events related to Bible prophecy. At this time, Paul would like to encourage each individual to learn about who God is. Because one way or another, we are all eternal. The issue is our destiny. Welcome to PaulthePoke and www.paulthepoke.com
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