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Bible Commentaries

Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary

Ezekiel 10

Verses 1-8

EZEKIEL - CHAPTER 10

TEMPLE-ALTAR FIRE SPREAD OVER JERUSALEM

Verses 1-8:

Verse 1 announces that Ezekiel looked, and upon the firmament above the head of the cherubims, over the mercy seat, in the most holy place, appeared as it were a sapphire stone about or upon a throne. It symbolized the irrevocable judgment of God against sin, vindicating His holiness, Ezekiel 1:22; Ezekiel 1:26. The idea is that the judgments are drawing nearer and nearer.

Verse 2 states that he, Jehovah, the one shadowed upon the sapphire throne spoke to the man (messenger) clothed with linen, Ezekiel 9:2-3. He was told to go in between the wheels under the cherub, at the mercy seat, and fill the hollow of his hand with coals of fire, from between the cherubims, and scatter them over the city of Jerusalem, Revelation 8:5. Then Ezekiel declares that the linen clothed messenger did this in his presence, as he saw him in the vision, scattering judgment fire over the city.

Verse 3 further states that the cherubims stood on the right side of the house or temple of the Lord to the south, when the linen clothed man and the avengers went inside. And the cloud (of Shekinah glory) filled the inner court of the house of the Lord, as in Revelation 15:8, as Divine wrath went forth.

Verse 4 declares that the glory-cloud of the Lord went up from the cherub and stood over the threshold, and the house of the Lord was filled with the brightness of the cloud of His glory, as also described Ezekiel 43:5; 1 Kings 8:10-11. He received glory in the judgment upon the city, vindicating His holiness.

Verse 5 states that the sound of the wings of the cherubims was heard, even to the outer court, as the voice of the Almighty God, when He speaks, Psalms 29:3. The sound was a thunderous sound, Psalms 29:3.

Verse 6 further discloses that when this direction of v. 2 was completed, then the man clothed in linen went in and stood by or alongside the wheels or wheel, an indefinite and unclear one, one nearby when he went for the fire, v. 2. Once ministers of grace the cherubims are now the obedient ministers of Divine vengeance, Psalms 40:7-8; Hebrews 10:7.

Verse 7 relates that one cherub, one of the four, stretched forth his hand from between the cherubims to the fire between them, and took of the fire and put it into the hands of him who was clothed in linen, who took it and went out of the most holy area of the temple, Ezekiel 1:8, v. 2. He was then to go forth as an executor of judgment, Hebrews 1:14.

Verse 8 adds that there then appeared in the cherubims the form of a man’s hand under their wings. This symbolizes the fact that the hands of human instrumentality are used to execute divine work, even the hands of the wicked men, like that of the Chaldean seizure and oppression of the rebels against God in Jerusalem, Israel, and Judah, Ezekiel 1:8.

Verses 9-22

THE CHERUBIMS FURTHER DESCRIBED

Verses 9-22:

Verse 9 recounts that when or as Ezekiel beheld the cherubim’s, four wheels appeared by them, one wheel by each cherubim; and the appearance of the wheels was as the color of a beryl, or chrysalite stone, brilliant like fire, reflecting coming judgment, much as that formerly described Ezekiel 1:16; Daniel 10:6.

Verse 10 explains that the four wheels had one appearance or likeness, as if a wheel had been within a wheel, cutting each other at right angles. In fact there were two wheels, each with one within it or two sets of wheels, as also suggested, Ezekiel 1:16. The set might roll forward in either of four directions.

Verse 11 further relates that when the wheels moved they went upon their four sides, turning not, not changing directions as they went, to a predetermined destination, where the head looked and directed, Ezekiel 1:9; Ezekiel 1:17; Isaiah 55:11.

Verse 12 describes the four wheels as having one body or flesh appearance, as seen Revelation 4:6. Their backs, hands, wings, and wheels were full of eyes, round about their entire circle of four wheels, Proverbs 15:3. These symbolized divine judgment to be poured out under the all-seeing eye of God, Ezekiel 1:18; Zechariah 4:10.

Verse 13 asserts that it was cried to them in Ezekiel’s hearing, "O wheel!" This signified the surging or swift judgment that was to come on wheels, from the four living creatures, heathen powers from the north, Ezekiel 4:5.

Verse 14 describes the body appearance of each of the four wheels as having an head with four faces: 1) one, of a cherub or angel, 2) two, of a Prayer of Manasseh 1:3) three, of a lion, and 4) four, of an eagle, differing slightly from the description of Ezekiel 1:10. See also Numbers 2:3; Numbers 2:10; Numbers 2:18; Numbers 2:25. Whatever else may be drawn from these faces let it become a fixed principle of Bible interpretation that living creatures were used predominately to represent Gentile world powers in the Scriptures.

Verse 15 adds that the cherubims were lifted up or taken up from the earth. Ezekiel then certifies that "this is (exists as) the living creature that I saw by the river Chebar," as formerly related in a previous vision, Ezekiel 1:3; Ezekiel 1:5; Ezekiel 3:23.

Verse 16 reiterates that when the cherubims went (moved out) the wheels went by them. And when the cherubims lifted their wings in flight from the earth, the same wheels also turned not from beside them, but were lifted up and accompanied them in flight, Ezekiel 1:19; v. 18.

Verse 17 further states that when the cherubims stood these wheels stood also. And when they were lifted up (as cherubims) the wheels lifted themselves up also. Because the spirit (dynamics or power) of the living creature was in, and empowered them, Ezekiel 1:12; Ezekiel 1:10; Ezekiel 1:21; Ezekiel 36:27.

Verse 18 adds that "then," at this point in Ezekiel’s vision, the glory of the Lord departed from or abandoned the threshold of the house or temple of the Lord, and stood or hovered over the cherubims, as if sanctioning their determined mission of destruction of the temple, the city, and the land of Israel, v. 4; Hosea 9:12. This had been foretold Deuteronomy 31:17; 1 Samuel 28:10; 1 Samuel 28:15; 1 Samuel 4:21.

Verse 19 recounts that Ezekiel then saw the cherubims, overshadowed by the glory of the Lord (v. 18), as they lifted up their wings and went up from the earth in his sight. And with the cherubims also the four wheels that stood at the door of the east gate of the Lord’s house went out, up and away with the glory of the God of Israel over, protecting and directing them on their judgment mission upon all Israel and Judah. By the eastern gate the glory of the Lord departed Israel and through it the Christ of glory shall one day return, Ezekiel 43:2-4.

Verse 20 declares that this was the living creature Ezekiel had seen under the God of Israel’s (control) at the river of Chebar, as recounted in a former vision, Ezekiel 1:3; Ezekiel 1:5; Ezekiel 1:22; Ezekiel 10:15. Then he added, "I knew or recognized that they were the cherubims, or represented the same things that the cherubims did about the holy place."

Verse 21 recounts that each had four faces apiece, four wings each, and the likeness of a man’s hand was under their wings, denoting that they represented the instrumentality of mankind, in Gentile vengeance against Israel for her apostasy, Ezekiel 1:10; Ezekiel 10:8.

Verse 22 concludes that the likeness of the faces in the Jerusalem vision was identical with, and confirmed what, he had seen in the vision at Chebar earlier, in Babylon. Every messenger of Divine wrath went straight forward to do his Divinely appointed duty, as an angelic motivator of men to do God’s chastening work, through Gentile powers, against His people, according to His decrees, Deuteronomy 28:45-67.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Blessed Hope Foundation and the Baptist Training Center.
Bibliographical Information
Garner, Albert & Howes, J.C. "Commentary on Ezekiel 10". Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/ghb/ezekiel-10.html. 1985.