Today’s passage is Ezekiel 1:15-28. Apparently I ran a little further ahead by writing on yesterday’s passage and today’s passage in my GAME sharing for yesterday. In case you missed it, below is my GAME sharing concerning Ezekiel 1:15-28. Let’s go!
Ezekiel 1:15-21 (NIV) 15 As I looked at the living creatures, I saw a wheel on the ground beside each creature with its four faces. 16 This was the appearance and structure of the wheels: They sparkled like chrysolite, and all four looked alike. Each appeared to be made like a wheel intersecting a wheel. 17 As they moved, they would go in any one of the four directions the creatures faced; the wheels did not turn about as the creatures went. 18 Their rims were high and awesome, and all four rims were full of eyes all around. 19 When the living creatures moved, the wheels beside them moved; and when the living creatures rose from the ground, the wheels also rose. 20 Wherever the spirit would go, they would go, and the wheels would rise along with them, because the spirit of the living creatures was in the wheels. 21 When the creatures moved, they also moved; when the creatures stood still, they also stood still; and when the creatures rose from the ground, the wheels rose along with them, because the spirit of the living creatures was in the wheels.
On verses 15-21: For those of you who like gadgets, you’ll love heaven and in particular the wheels that run beside the four living creatures. Like a scene from Star Wars where people are accompanied by incredibly smart druids, each of the four living creatures is accompanied by its own wheel. Each wheel is sparkly like chrysolite (v16) and moves in any one of four directions that the living creatures move in (v17). Each wheel appears to have another wheel inside of it so that it can effectively move in any direction without turning (v16). Each wheel is tall, full of eyes and could move not just horizontally but vertically as well, rising whenever its living creature rises (v18-20). Highly intelligent and seemingly sentient, each wheel would follow its living creature wherever the living creature went. In fact, verse 21 says that somehow each wheel is filled with the spirit of its living creature (v20-21).
What can we learn from this? Some scholars think that the wheels reflect certain aspects of God’s nature. For example, the fact that these wheels can go anywhere speaks to God’s omnipresence (He is everywhere). The fact that these wheels are full of eyes speaks to God’s omniscience (He sees everything). The fact that these wheels are “high and awesome” (v18) speaks to God’s omnipotence (He is all powerful). For me, I just think these wheels are really cool.
Ezekiel 1:22-25 (NIV) 22 Spread out above the heads of the living creatures was what looked like an expanse, sparkling like ice, and awesome. 23 Under the expanse their wings were stretched out one toward the other, and each had two wings covering its body. 24 When the creatures moved, I heard the sound of their wings, like the roar of rushing waters, like the voice of the Almighty, like the tumult of an army. When they stood still, they lowered their wings. 25 Then there came a voice from above the expanse over their heads as they stood with lowered wings.
On verses 22-25: Above these amazing living creatures and their really cool wheels is what Ezekiel calls an awesome expanse, sparkling like ice (v22). This expanse seems to act like a platform for God’s throne. For those of you who like art and architecture, you’ll never see anything like what you’ll see in heaven. Also, when God’s voice speaks above that expanse (v25), these awesome living creatures stand still with lowered wings, showing humility and reverence for God.
What can we learn from this? Those living creatures are awesome, but notice that they show a tremendous reverence and humility before God. Similarly, you are an awesome living creature yourself, maybe not awesome the way that these cherubim are awesome, but even more awesome and in your own way — you are made in God’s image and will in fact rule over angels the Bible says (1 Corinthians 6:3)! So, awesome creature, like the four living creatures, be reverent and humble before your Creator God. When He speaks, be still and humble before Him.
Ezekiel 1:26-28 (NIV) 26 Above the expanse over their heads was what looked like a throne of sapphire, and high above on the throne was a figure like that of a man. 27 I saw that from what appeared to be his waist up he looked like glowing metal, as if full of fire, and that from there down he looked like fire; and brilliant light surrounded him. 28 Like the appearance of a rainbow in the clouds on a rainy day, so was the radiance around him. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD. When I saw it, I fell facedown, and I heard the voice of one speaking.
On verses 26-28: Here, after seeing the awesome living creatures and their amazing wheels, Ezekiel catches a glimpse of the most awesome one of all: the Lord Himself. He can be seen high above the expanse on what looks like a throne of sapphire (v26a). He has an appearance similar to that of a man (v26b), except just the brightest, most brilliant, most fiery and most lit man you’ve ever seen (v27). The radiance around Him is like a rainbow (v28). John in the book of Revelation sees a similar picture of the Lord (Revelation 4:1-16). What Ezekiel is seeing is so awesome that he falls facedown as he hears God’s voice.
What can we learn from this?
There are no words that can fully describe just how beautiful, glorious, and awesome God is. As awesome as the living creatures and the wheels are, God the Creator is incomparably more awesome, more interesting, more intelligent and more powerful.
The way Ezekiel’s vision of heaven matches John’s vision of heaven in Revelation is yet one more reason to believe that the God of the Old Testament is the same as the God of the New Testament.
Awesome God, the world has no idea just how amazing, exciting, and awesome You are and how amazing, exciting, and awesome heaven is. Be exalted, O God, above everything else in heaven, on earth, and in my life. In Jesus’ name, AMEN!