WHEN YOUR WORLD CRUMBLES
EZEKIEL CHAPTER 1
June 15, 2014
FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH
JACKSON, MISSISSIPPI
USA
Malachi 3:10
10 “Br...
J. Vernon McGee
Thru the Bible Commentary, Vol. 25: Ezekiel.
Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1991.
A Prophet for ...
6 Before the throne there was a sea of glass, like crystal. And in the midst of the
throne, and around the throne, were fo...
EZEKIEL
CHAPTER 1
http://ts1.mm.bing.net/th?id=HN.608013678184958679&pid=1.7
The story of Ezekiel is the story of human li...
Ezekiel 1:1-4 NKJV
Ezekiel’s Vision of God
1 Now it came to pass in the thirtieth year, in the fourth month, on the fifth ...
http://atlantipedia.ie/images/AncientSumeria2.jpg
 Used for irrigation, it was the primary settlement location of the Jew...
When Ezekiel went to the prayer meeting, it was just like any other day; but the
Lord made it a turning point in his life....
http://eisakouo.files.wordpress.com/2012/02/hand-of-god.jpg
Ephesians 1:17-18 NKJV
17 “that the God of our Lord Jesus Chri...
In Ezekiel 1:4, what was significant about the windstorm coming from the north?
http://withfriendship.com/images/h/36506/i...
http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-E_Kj7gF6OsU/UkEeKcCtmRI/AAAAAAAAfeI/OH0Z-jQFZQo/s1600/Christ+return1%5B1%5D.jpg
Ezekiel 1:5-14 N...
Genesis 3:24 NKJV
24 So He drove out the man; and He placed cherubim at the east of the garden
of Eden, and a flaming swor...
http://ts2.mm.bing.net/th?id=HN.608001914272023731&w=242&h=182&c=7&rs=1&pid=1.7
Of special interest are their four faces: ...
The lion is the greatest of the untamed beasts of the forest, the King of the
Jungle.
http://incrediblesnaps.com/wp-conten...
The presence of the cherubim before the throne of God is assurance that God
remembers His promise and cares for His creatu...
Now the significant thing is that the four gospels present exactly these same
qualities in Jesus Christ.
He appears first ...
Exodus 34:29-30, 35 - the skin of Moses’ face shone
http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-mWEBwrcpjyw/URZfQ7K36kI/AAAAAAAAAq8/uKlJqtFk...
17 When they moved, they went toward any one of four directions; they did not
turn aside when they went. 18 As for their r...
So they could move with almost the speed of light.
Their movement was like a lightning bolt - the appearance of a flash of...
The wheels symbolize the omnipresence of God, while the eyes on their rims
suggest the omniscience of God, seeing and know...
Romans 8:14-18 NKJV
14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. 15 For you
did not receive the ...
37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him Who loved us.
38 For I am persuaded that neither death ...
In Ezekiel 1:22, what is the firmament of crystal?
This likely is the sea of glass, as clear as crystal, mentioned in Reve...
http://www.spiritwatch.org/throne.jpg
28 Like the appearance of a rainbow in a cloud on a rainy day, so was the
appearance...
throne, in appearance like a sapphire stone” (v26)
http://www.beadsmanufacturers.com/product/95674.jpg
the throne was azur...
“His waist and upward I saw, as it were, the color of amber” (v27)
http://thepalmbeachcandlecompany.com/images/amber.jpg
h...
The sapphire throne had a rainbow around it (covenant grace).
http://newheavenonearth.files.wordpress.com/2011/09/sky.jpg?...
2 Immediately I was in the Spirit; and behold, a throne set in heaven, and One sat
on the throne. 3 And He Who sat there w...
In His wrath, God remembers mercy (Habakkuk 3:2b).
Habakkuk 3:2b
2b O Lord, revive Your work in the midst of the years!
In...
http://ts2.mm.bing.net/th?&id=HN.608018930927929601&w=410&h=307&c=0&pid=1.9&rs=0&p=0
http://blogs.blueletterbible.org/blb/...
http://media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/49/58/f9/4958f90b35c70d92ef20a91deb4340f5.jpg
http://ts3.mm.bing.net/th?&id=HN.6079...
The glory of the Lord is one of the key themes in Ezekiel (3:12, 23; 8:4; 9:3; 10:4,
18-19; 11:22-23; 39:21; 43:2, 4-5; 44...
No matter what message God gave him to preach, or what opposition arose
from the people, Ezekiel would be encouraged and s...
saw, as it were, the appearance of fire with brightness all around. 28 Like the
appearance of a rainbow in a cloud on a ra...
And later, after the crucifixion and the resurrection, He ascended from that
mountain into glory.
God sends the message to...
If we neglect God, Who is utterly essential to our being, and we refuse to give
heed to His love and His grace, then the o...
Ezekiel 28:17-18a NKJV
17 “Your heart was lifted up because of your beauty;
You corrupted your wisdom for the sake of your...
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06 June 15, 2014 Ezekiel Chapter One, When Your World Crumbles

  1. 1. WHEN YOUR WORLD CRUMBLES EZEKIEL CHAPTER 1 June 15, 2014 FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH JACKSON, MISSISSIPPI USA Malachi 3:10 10 “Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, That there may be food in My house, And try Me now in this,” Says the LORD of hosts, “If I will not open for you the windows of heaven And pour out for you such blessing That there will not be room enough to receive it.” What’s the number one thing? http://ts2.mm.bing.net/th?id=HN.608004121869748387&pid=1.7 1 Corinthians 10:31 NKJV 31 Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.
  2. 2. J. Vernon McGee Thru the Bible Commentary, Vol. 25: Ezekiel. Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1991. A Prophet for our Time: Ezekiel by Chuck Missler Adventuring Through the Bible by Ray Stedman The Bible Exposition Commentary (BE Series) - Old Testament Revelation 4 The Throne Room of Heaven 1 After these things I looked, and behold, a door standing open in heaven. And the first voice which I heard was like a trumpet speaking with me, saying, “Come up here, and I will show you things which must take place after this.” 2 Immediately I was in the Spirit; and behold, a throne set in heaven, and One sat on the throne. 3 And He Who sat there was like a jasper and a sardius stone in appearance; and there was a rainbow around the throne, in appearance like an emerald. http://ts4.mm.bing.net/th?id=HN.608051980712477111&pid=1.7 4 Around the throne were twenty-four thrones, and on the thrones I saw twenty- four elders sitting, clothed in white robes; and they had crowns of gold on their heads. 5 And from the throne proceeded lightnings, thunderings, and voices. Seven lamps of fire were burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God.
  3. 3. 6 Before the throne there was a sea of glass, like crystal. And in the midst of the throne, and around the throne, were four living creatures full of eyes in front and in back. 7 The first living creature was like a lion, the second living creature like a calf, the third living creature had a face like a man, and the fourth living creature was like a flying eagle. 8 The four living creatures, each having six wings, were full of eyes around and within. And they do not rest day or night, saying: “Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, Who was and is and is to come!” http://www.biblefood.org/holycast.jpg 9 Whenever the living creatures give glory and honor and thanks to Him Who sits on the throne, Who lives forever and ever, 10 the twenty-four elders fall down before Him Who sits on the throne and worship Him Who lives forever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying: 11 “You are worthy, O Lord, To receive glory and honor and power; For You created all things, And by Your will they exist and were created.”
  4. 4. EZEKIEL CHAPTER 1 http://ts1.mm.bing.net/th?id=HN.608013678184958679&pid=1.7 The story of Ezekiel is the story of human life and the book begins with a tremendous vision of God, because all life starts with God. God is the greatest fact in existence! Anyone who wants to think logically about life must always begin with God. That is where the Bible begins. http://ts2.mm.bing.net/th?&id=HN.608028422806504002&w=300&h=300&c=0&pid=1.9&rs=0&p=0  This book of Ezekiel begins, then, with a mystic vision of God.  The glory of the prophet Ezekiel was that he saw God more clearly than any of the other prophets.  If your heart needs to be set on fire by the revelation of the character and glory of God – then study Ezekiel.  He is the prophet who saw the great glory of God! The book opens dramatically with the vision that Ezekiel saw by the River Chebar (kebAWR), in the land of Babylon:
  5. 5. Ezekiel 1:1-4 NKJV Ezekiel’s Vision of God 1 Now it came to pass in the thirtieth year, in the fourth month, on the fifth day of the month, as I was among the captives by the River Chebar (kebAWR), that the heavens were opened and I saw visions of God. 2 On the fifth day of the month, which was in the fifth year of King Jehoiachin’s captivity, http://www.temkit.com/08-Bible-Prophecy/Knowing-Prophecy/images/captivek.jpg 3 the word of the Lord came expressly to Ezekiel the priest, the son of Buzi (booZEE “my contempt”), in the land of the Chaldeans by the River Chebar (kebAWR); and the hand of the Lord was upon him there. 4 Then I looked, and behold, a whirlwind was coming out of the north, a great cloud with raging fire engulfing itself; and brightness was all around it and radiating out of its midst like the color of amber (golden), out of the midst of the fire. Ezekiel 1:1-4 NKJV In his captivity, Ezekiel lived at the River Chebar (kebAWR), which was the great shipping canal branching off from the Euphrates above Babylon. http://ehsworldstudiesjackoboice.wikispaces.com/file/view/riversofcush.jpeg/158270521/riversofcush.jpeg
  6. 6. http://atlantipedia.ie/images/AncientSumeria2.jpg  Used for irrigation, it was the primary settlement location of the Jewish captives.  Rivers became a place they regularly gathered for prayer (see Acts 16:13). Acts 16:13 13 And on the Sabbath day we went out of the city to the riverside, where prayer was customarily made; and we sat down and spoke to the women who met there. Apparently Ezekiel was there interceding with the other captives when the Lord called him to his new ministry. http://i39.tinypic.com/ehly0o.jpg Isaiah was worshiping in the temple when God called him (Isa. 6); Paul & Barnabas were engaged in worship at Antioch when they received their call (Acts 13:1-3).
  7. 7. When Ezekiel went to the prayer meeting, it was just like any other day; but the Lord made it a turning point in his life. We never know what a difference a day will make when we're in the right place in the path of duty. http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-qKfTmDgd0iY/UrDFIM62orI/AAAAAAAAAWo/2Ttp31mx15c/s1600/right+place+right+time.jpg In Ezekiel 1:2 one of the last kings of Judah, Jehoiachin (598-597 B.C.) has been taken captive by the Babylonians (2 Kings 24:15) and lived in exile in Babylon. King Jehoiachin's life is the best illustration of the maxim: "During prosperity a man must never forget the possibility of misfortune; and in adversity must not despair of prosperity's return" (Seder 'Olam R. xxv.). http://s2.hubimg.com/u/6070285_f248.jpg In verse 3, the word of the Lord came to Ezekiel in the form of a vision, and the hand of the Lord laid hold of him and claimed him for special service. The word of the Lord brings enlightenment and the hand of the Lord brings enablement (see Ephesians 1:15-23).
  8. 8. http://eisakouo.files.wordpress.com/2012/02/hand-of-god.jpg Ephesians 1:17-18 NKJV 17 “that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, 18 the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints,” Romans 5:1-2 NKJV 1 Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through Whom also we have access (Hebrews 4:16) by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Hebrews 4:15-16 NKJV 15 For we do not have a High Priest Who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. 16 Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need (when your world crumbles). Romans 5:3-5 NKJV 3 And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; 4 and perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5 Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit Who was given to us. There are not enough containers in the whole world to hold all that love.
  9. 9. In Ezekiel 1:4, what was significant about the windstorm coming from the north? http://withfriendship.com/images/h/36506/into-babylonian-captivity.jpg Because of the weather patterns, storms usually came from the N or the NW and because of geography, invasions from empires other than Egypt always came from the N. Like a windstorm, this was the direction one could look to for God’s judgment to come, since the Assyrians and Babylonians both invaded from that direction.  Ezekiel saw bright light around the cloud and an enfolding fire, like molten metal, within the cloud.  Both are reminders of the holiness of God, for “our God is a consuming fire”. http://shadowness.com/file/item7/185151/image_t6.jpg
  10. 10. http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-E_Kj7gF6OsU/UkEeKcCtmRI/AAAAAAAAfeI/OH0Z-jQFZQo/s1600/Christ+return1%5B1%5D.jpg Ezekiel 1:5-14 NKJV 5 Also from within it came the likeness of four living creatures. And this was their appearance: they had the likeness of a man. 6 Each one had four faces, and each one had four wings. (Seraphim have 6) 7 Their legs were straight, and the soles of their feet were like the soles of calves’ feet. They sparkled like the color of burnished bronze. 8 The hands of a man were under their wings on their four sides; and each of the four had faces and wings. 9 Their wings touched one another. The creatures did not turn when they went, but each one went straight forward. 10 As for the likeness of their faces, each had the face of a man; each of the four had the face of a lion on the right side, each of the four had the face of an ox on the left side, and each of the four had the face of an eagle. 11 Thus were their faces. Their wings stretched upward; two wings of each one touched one another, and two covered their bodies. 12 And each one went straight forward; they went wherever the spirit wanted to go, and they did not turn when they went. 13 As for the likeness of the living creatures, their appearance was like burning coals of fire, like the appearance of torches going back and forth among the living creatures. The fire was bright and out of the fire went lightning. 14 And the living creatures ran back and forth, in appearance like a flash of lightning. In Ezekiel 10:15 and 20, Ezekiel identified the living creatures as the cherubim, heavenly creatures first mentioned in Genesis 3:24.
  11. 11. Genesis 3:24 NKJV 24 So He drove out the man; and He placed cherubim at the east of the garden of Eden, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to guard the way to the tree of life. http://www.live4god.org/Adam_and_Eve018.jpg Cherubim are mentioned throughout the Hebrew Bible (O.T.) and once in the N. T. in reference to the mercy seat of the Ark of the Covenant (Hebrews 9:5). http://t0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQckUVQaEChPp4zt76eaECMYXXyxjpJwFVud7fx9CVDyYAUTlE65g Hebrews 9:3-5 NKJV 3 and behind the second veil, the part of the tabernacle which is called the Holiest of All, 4 which had the golden censer and the ark of the covenant overlaid on all sides with gold, in which were the golden pot that had the manna, Aaron’s rod that budded, and the tablets of the covenant; 5 and above it were the cherubim of glory overshadowing the mercy seat. Of these things we cannot now speak in detail. The four living creatures had the body of a human, straight feet like that of a calf, four faces and four wings, with human hands under the wings.
  12. 12. http://ts2.mm.bing.net/th?id=HN.608001914272023731&w=242&h=182&c=7&rs=1&pid=1.7 Of special interest are their four faces: a man, a lion, an ox, and an eagle (Ezek. 1:10). http://sunshineinthestorm.files.wordpress.com/2011/05/fourlivingcreatures.jpg Man is the highest of God's creatures, being made in the image of God. http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-MQ_V6W8oQos/Too0jH3c_jI/AAAAAAAAAFI/oNaiTWx5I5U/s1600/creating_adam.jpg
  13. 13. The lion is the greatest of the untamed beasts of the forest, the King of the Jungle. http://incrediblesnaps.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/Forest-Lion-by-greg-du-toit.jpg The ox is the strongest of the domesticated beasts of the field. http://t1.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQDXsPxFAOqJKv4Tq2GzB5YmSvipM5NbkUHdwfbVw42if04kS2mjA The eagle is the greatest of the birds and is even a picture of God (Deuteronomy 32:11-12). http://funbaz.com/wallpapers/birds/eagles/downloads/eagle-for-cliff-063.jpg But there is also a connection here with the covenant God made with Noah (and with us) and with every living creature after the Flood (Genesis 9:8-17). Genesis 9:8-10 NKJV 8 Then God spoke to Noah and to his sons with him, saying: 9 “And as for Me, behold, I establish My covenant with you (man) and with your descendants after you (that would be us), 10 and with every living creature that is with you: the birds (eagle), the cattle (ox), and every beast of the earth (lion) with you, of all that go out of the ark, every beast of the earth.
  14. 14. The presence of the cherubim before the throne of God is assurance that God remembers His promise and cares for His creatures. This, then, is a revelation of the greatness and the majesty of God told in symbolic form. We can't interpret all of this, because there is much mystery about the person of God. http://trueknowledgeorg.files.wordpress.com/2012/10/blog-mysteryofgod.jpg What Ezekiel sees is the power and the majesty of God. http://ts1.mm.bing.net/th?id=HN.608025081321753493&pid=1.7 It is interesting that the four living creatures setting forth the character of God are always described as having the faces of a lion, a man, an ox, and an eagle. Throughout all of history these living creatures have symbolically represented certain qualities of God’s character.  A lion is always a picture of sovereignty, of supremacy---"the king of the beasts."  A man is the picture of intelligence, of understanding.  An ox is always the symbol of servitude, of sacrifice.  And an eagle is the symbol of power and deity, of soaring over all creation.
  15. 15. Now the significant thing is that the four gospels present exactly these same qualities in Jesus Christ. He appears first in the Gospel of Matthew as the King---the lion, the king of beasts, the sovereign of all. He appears in the Gospel of Mark as the servant, the ox. In the Gospel of Luke, He is man in his intelligence, in his insight, in his understanding of life. And in the Gospel of John He is deity (the eagle). These four reflect the character of Jesus Christ. Now, even though Ezekiel doesn't understand this, even though he doesn't perceive the significance of his vision; he saw nonetheless the glory of God in the face of Jesus. http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_T_pwKfo5X1Q/TVHVTdyrJ9I/AAAAAAAAB_Y/F4Pl4CameaM/s1600/king_of_glory.jpg 2 Corinthians 4:6 NKJV 6 For it is God Who commanded light to shine out of darkness, Who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. http://wordincarnate.files.wordpress.com/2011/07/transfiguration2.jpg
  16. 16. Exodus 34:29-30, 35 - the skin of Moses’ face shone http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-mWEBwrcpjyw/URZfQ7K36kI/AAAAAAAAAq8/uKlJqtFkYf0/s1600/GraceToGlory.jpg God reveals Himself through Christ and through us! Ezekiel saw clearly the revelation of God in Jesus Christ. Ezekiel 1:15-21 NKJV 15 Now as I looked at the living creatures, behold, a wheel was on the earth beside each living creature with its four faces. 16 The appearance of the wheels and their workings was like the color of beryl (BER-əl), http://gehnabazaar.com/images/imagesite/green_beryl_round_280x280.jpg and all four had the same likeness. The appearance of their workings was, as it were, a wheel in the middle of a wheel. http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-KhKeQaL9Nnw/TnZQqtW2I7I/AAAAAAAABH4/SRF4MG2vfhA/s1600/WHEEL-WITHIN-WHEEL.jpg
  17. 17. 17 When they moved, they went toward any one of four directions; they did not turn aside when they went. 18 As for their rims, they were so high they were awesome; and their rims were full of eyes, all around the four of them. 19 When the living creatures went, the wheels went beside them; and when the living creatures were lifted up from the earth, the wheels were lifted up. 20 Wherever the spirit wanted to go, they went, because there the spirit went; and the wheels were lifted together with them, for the spirit of the living creatures was in the wheels. 21 When those went, these went; when those stood, these stood; and when those were lifted up from the earth, the wheels were lifted up together with them, for the spirit of the living creatures was in the wheels. Ezekiel 1:15-21 NKJV These wheels looked like a yellow or greenish-yellow precious stone; they were very high, as though reaching from earth to heaven, and their rims were awesome and full of eyes. http://ts1.mm.bing.net/th?&id=HN.608037729997884543&w=300&h=300&c=0&pid=1.9&rs=0&p=0 It was indeed an awesome sight, the huge wheels, the living creatures, the enfolding fire, and the eyes in the rims of the wheels. http://i147.photobucket.com/albums/r289/TruthisAlive/THE-RIVER-THRONE-VISION.jpg
  18. 18. So they could move with almost the speed of light. Their movement was like a lightning bolt - the appearance of a flash of lightning. Ezekiel is limited to using human language - trying to describe their appearance. http://www.lovingjustwise.com/09_1pr6a.jpg  This is the third time Ezekiel mentions this, so it's obviously quite remarkable to him.  He has not ever seen anything like this on the earth. Ezekiel’s vision of the four wheels dramatically illustrates the omnipresence and omniscience of God. These wheels were associated with the “four living creatures” (Ezekiel 1:4), who were later described (Ezekiel 10:5, 20) as cherubim, angelic beings appointed as guardians of the holiness of God. http://pastoralin.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/The-Holiness-of-God-2009-National-Conference.jpg Most Biblical scholars hold to the idea that the Spirit of God gave direction to the wheels through direct knowledge of and access to the will of God. (Instant obedience)
  19. 19. The wheels symbolize the omnipresence of God, while the eyes on their rims suggest the omniscience of God, seeing and knowing everything. This vision appeared to Ezekiel as a powerful imagery of movement and action demonstrating the characteristics of God’s divine nature. Ezekiel’s vision presented God as being on a chariot-like throne, His glory both supreme and immanent, existing in and extending into all the created universe. As such, the whole revelation by God in this vision to Ezekiel, i.e., the cherubim, the chariot, the Spirit, and the wheels, emphasized their unity and coordination. As terrifying as this vision was, it vividly displayed the majesty and glory of God (Ezekiel 1:28), Who came to Ezekiel and the children of Israel in the midst of their Babylonian exile. It reminded them of His holiness and power as the Lord of all creation during their darkest days. The message was clear: though His people were in exile and their nation was about to be destroyed, God was still on the throne and able to handle every situation! The lesson for us today is that, through His marvelous providence, God moves in the affairs of all nations to work out His own unseen plan, always at work, intricately designed, never wrong, and never late (Romans 8:28).  He is not going to have any losers on His team! http://ts4.mm.bing.net/th?&id=HN.608008614421925134&w=300&h=300&c=0&pid=1.9&rs=0&p=0 Romans 8:11 NKJV 11 But if the Spirit of Him Who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He Who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.
  20. 20. Romans 8:14-18 NKJV 14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. 15 For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father (Daddy).” 16 The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together. 18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. Romans 8:22-23 NKJV 22 For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now. 23 Not only that, but we also who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body. (We have to groan to be grown) Romans 8:26-39 NKJV 26 Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. 27 Now He Who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God. 28 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to his purpose. 29 For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. 30 Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified. 31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He Who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things? 33 Who shall bring a charge against God’s elect? It is God Who justifies. 34 Who is he who condemns? It is Christ Who died, and furthermore is also risen, Who is even at the right hand of God, Who also makes intercession for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 As it is written: “For Your sake we are killed all day long; We are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.”
  21. 21. 37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him Who loved us. 38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, 39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:26-39 NKJV Of the many fascinating Scriptural descriptions of heavenly things in Ezekiel's vision, this one of chapters 1 and 10 is by far the most stunning and complex. The prophet had to describe in the Hebrew language what he saw, which was so incredible and foreign to his experiences as a human. The Apostle Paul explained our limited vision and understanding of spiritual things: 1Corinthians 13:12 NKJV "For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known." The description is full of the splendor of flashing light, so brilliant that the details are minutely revealed, but so dazzling that they are not clearly seen. The "rings were full of eyes" (verse 18). Since men's eyes are for seeing, and man is made in the likeness of God (Genesis 1:26), we can safely assume that they are meant for the same. The great number of eyes on the rings may portend or symbolize how great is God's awareness and direction of events. Ezekiel 1:22-25 NKJV 22 The likeness of the firmament above the heads of the living creatures was like the color of an awesome crystal, stretched out over their heads. 23 And under the firmament their wings spread out straight, one toward another. Each one had two which covered one side, and each one had two which covered the other side of the body. 24 When they went, I heard the noise of their wings, like the noise of many waters, like the voice of the Almighty, a tumult like the noise of an army; and when they stood still, they let down their wings. 25 A voice came from above the firmament that was over their heads; whenever they stood, they let down their wings.
  22. 22. In Ezekiel 1:22, what is the firmament of crystal? This likely is the sea of glass, as clear as crystal, mentioned in Revelation 4:6.  This awesome expanse looked like sparkling ice (crystal) and stood over the heads of the cherubim.  Now we get an almost total picture: a heavenly chariot with four wheels, moving quickly from place to place at the direction of the Lord.  As it moved, the noise of the wings of the cherubim sounded like the noise of great waters coming together, "like the voice of the Almighty," and like the sound of a mighty army (Ezekiel 3:13; 10:5; Psalm 46:3; Revelation 1:15; 14:2; 19:6). The mobility of the wheels suggests the omnipresence of God; the eyes, His omniscience; and the elevated position, His omnipotence. Ezekiel was beholding a representation of the providence of God as He worked in His world. But one more item remained. Ezekiel 1:26-28 NKJV 26 And above the firmament over their heads was the likeness of a throne, in appearance like a sapphire stone; on the likeness of the throne was a likeness with the appearance of a man high above it. http://polination.files.wordpress.com/2013/01/sea-of-glass-like-crystal-or-sapphire-tilework.jpg 27 Also from the appearance of His waist and upward I saw, as it were, the color of amber with the appearance of fire all around within it; and from the appearance of His waist and downward I saw, as it were, the appearance of fire with brightness all around.
  23. 23. http://www.spiritwatch.org/throne.jpg 28 Like the appearance of a rainbow in a cloud on a rainy day, so was the appearance of the brightness all around it. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord. Ezekiel 1:26-28 NKJV http://www.gracedoctrine.org/prepschool/2ndcomingofjcpt6_files/image004.jpg
  24. 24. throne, in appearance like a sapphire stone” (v26) http://www.beadsmanufacturers.com/product/95674.jpg the throne was azure blue http://ts2.mm.bing.net/th?&id=HN.607995016549567800&w=300&h=300&c=0&pid=1.9&rs=0&p=0 “on the likeness of the throne was a likeness with the appearance of a man high above it.”(v26) http://esdotcarter.files.wordpress.com/2010/01/ezekielsvision2.jpg
  25. 25. “His waist and upward I saw, as it were, the color of amber” (v27) http://thepalmbeachcandlecompany.com/images/amber.jpg http://farm4.staticflickr.com/3093/3175868244_a8fc1c488e.jpg Like the appearance of a rainbow in a cloud (v28) http://www.truthforlife.org/static/uploads/daily051013.png
  26. 26. The sapphire throne had a rainbow around it (covenant grace). http://newheavenonearth.files.wordpress.com/2011/09/sky.jpg?w=640 http://newbreedmovement.files.wordpress.com/2010/10/rainbow-around-the-throne.jpg Noah saw the rainbow after the storm (Gen. 9:13-16), the Apostle John saw it before the storm (Rev. 4:3), but Ezekiel saw it in the midst of the storm - in control of the storm. Revelation 4 The Throne Room of Heaven 1 After these things I looked, and behold, a door standing open in heaven. And the first voice which I heard was like a trumpet speaking with me, saying, “Come up here, and I will show you things which must take place after this.”
  27. 27. 2 Immediately I was in the Spirit; and behold, a throne set in heaven, and One sat on the throne. 3 And He Who sat there was like a jasper and a sardius stone in appearance; and there was a rainbow around the throne, in appearance like an emerald. 4 Around the throne were twenty-four thrones, and on the thrones I saw twenty-four elders sitting, clothed in white robes; and they had crowns of gold on their heads. 5 And from the throne proceeded lightnings, thunderings, and voices. Seven lamps of fire were burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God. 6 Before the throne there was a sea of glass, like crystal. And in the midst of the throne, and around the throne, were four living creatures full of eyes in front and in back. 7 The first living creature was like a lion, the second living creature like a calf, the third living creature had a face like a man, and the fourth living creature was like a flying eagle. 8 The four living creatures, each having six wings, were full of eyes around and within. And they do not rest day or night, saying: “Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, Who was and is and is to come!” 9 Whenever the living creatures give glory and honor and thanks to Him Who sits on the throne, Who lives forever and ever, 10 the twenty-four elders fall down before Him Who sits on the throne and worship Him Who lives forever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying: 11 “You are worthy, O Lord, To receive glory and honor and power; For You created all things, And by Your will they exist and were created.” http://harshikaram.files.wordpress.com/2010/09/rainbow.jpg
  28. 28. In His wrath, God remembers mercy (Habakkuk 3:2b). Habakkuk 3:2b 2b O Lord, revive Your work in the midst of the years! In the midst of the years make it known; In wrath remember mercy. Ezekiel realized that he was beholding the glory of the Lord (Ezek. 1:28), and he fell on his face in awesome fear (Ezekiel 3:23; Daniel 8:17; 10:9, 15, 17). The "man" he saw upon the throne was a preincarnate appearance of our Lord Jesus Christ. (See Ezek. 8:2 and 40:3.) http://sapphirethroneministries.files.wordpress.com/2013/08/sea-of-glass-like-crystal-or-sapphire-tilework.jpg In Ezekiel 1:28, what is the glory of the Lord here? This is also called the "Shekinah glory", and was manifested by the brilliant appearance and general awe that surrounded God’s throne. The wheels depicted God's omnipresence and the eyes His omniscience. Here the throne speaks of God's omnipotent authority.
  29. 29. http://ts2.mm.bing.net/th?&id=HN.608018930927929601&w=410&h=307&c=0&pid=1.9&rs=0&p=0 http://blogs.blueletterbible.org/blb/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2011/08/omnipotent.jpg http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-X-PiJwkIiDs/T7m5NNvZ-PI/AAAAAAAAE5g/rV7UTXx89tI/s1600/Omnipotent.jpg
  30. 30. http://media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/49/58/f9/4958f90b35c70d92ef20a91deb4340f5.jpg http://ts3.mm.bing.net/th?&id=HN.607992585599060941&w=300&h=300&c=0&pid=1.9&rs=0&p=0 http://annscookbook.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/beforethethroneofgodabove.jpg http://transforminggrace.files.wordpress.com/2009/12/throne-of-glory-justice-and-grace.jpg
  31. 31. The glory of the Lord is one of the key themes in Ezekiel (3:12, 23; 8:4; 9:3; 10:4, 18-19; 11:22-23; 39:21; 43:2, 4-5; 44:4). The prophet will watch God's glory leave the temple and go over the Mount of Olives, and he will also see it return to the kingdom temple. Because of Israel's sins, the glory left the temple; but God's promise is that one day the city of Jerusalem and the temple will be blessed by the glorious presence of the Lord. The city will be called “Jehovah Shammah—the Lord is there” (Ezekiel 48:35). http://spiritualbattleground.files.wordpress.com/2013/06/7-jehovah-shammah.jpg The greatest reward a person can ever have is the presence of the Lord! Now we can begin to grasp the message that God was giving His prophet.  Though His people were in exile and their nation was about to be destroyed, God was still on the throne and able to handle every situation.  He is above the storm!  In His marvelous providence, He moves in the affairs of nations and works out His hidden plan.  Israel wasn't the victim of Babylonian aggression. It was God who enabled the Babylonians to conquer His people and chasten them for their rebellion, but God would also bring the Medes and the Persians to conquer Babylon, and Cyrus, king of Persia, would permit the Jews to return to their land. Romans 11:33 NKJV Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and His ways past finding out!
  32. 32. No matter what message God gave him to preach, or what opposition arose from the people, Ezekiel would be encouraged and strengthened because he had seen the mighty throne of God in the midst of the fiery trial. He had seen the glory of God! END — Bible Exposition Commentary (BE Series) - Old Testament BEGIN RAY STEDMAN Ezekiel 1:5a NKJV 5a Also from within it came the likeness of four living creatures. And he describes these creatures to us. Each had four faces---the faces of a man, an eagle, an ox, and a lion. These four faces turned in every direction, faced every way. After he saw the four living creatures, he saw certain wheels. These are described in an old song: "Ezekiel saw a wheel, way up in the middle of the air; the big wheel ran by faith and the little wheel ran by the grace of God, a wheel in a wheel, away in the middle of the air." Ezekiel saw that these wheels were turning, one wheel within the other. As he watched he also saw a firmament above, shining in splendor, and above the firmament, as he lifted his eyes higher, he saw a throne. And on the throne sat a man.  Now, if you have read the book of Revelation you will recognize great similarities to what John saw.  John also saw four living creatures. He, too, saw a throne, and on the throne a man. Ezekiel 1:26-28 NKJV 26 And above the firmament over their heads was the likeness of a throne, in appearance like a sapphire stone; on the likeness of the throne was a likeness with the appearance of a man high above it. 27 Also from the appearance of His waist and upward I saw, as it were, the color of amber with the appearance of fire all around within it; and from the appearance of His waist and downward I
  33. 33. saw, as it were, the appearance of fire with brightness all around. 28 Like the appearance of a rainbow in a cloud on a rainy day, so was the appearance of the brightness all around it. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord. Ezekiel 1:26-28 NKJV Then in chapters 2-9, Ezekiel moves quickly into prophecies at great length that have to do with the failure of man. Ezekiel 2:4-5 NKJV 4 For they are impudent and stubborn children. I am sending you to them, and you shall say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God.’ 5 As for them, whether they hear or whether they refuse—for they are a rebellious house—yet they will know that a prophet has been among them. Ezekiel 5:7-8 NKJV 7 Therefore thus says the Lord God: ‘Because you have multiplied disobedience more than the nations that are all around you, have not walked in My statutes nor kept My judgments, nor even done according to the judgments of the nations that are all around you’— 8 therefore thus says the Lord God: ‘Indeed I, even I, am against you and will execute judgments in your midst in the sight of the nations. Ezekiel 8:16 NKJV 16 So He brought me into the inner court of the Lord’s house; and there, at the door of the temple of the Lord, between the porch and the altar, were about twenty-five men with their backs toward the temple of the Lord and their faces toward the east, and they were worshiping the sun. Ezekiel 10:18a NKJV 18a Then the glory of the Lord departed from the threshold of the temple Ezekiel 11:23 NKJV 23 And the glory of the Lord went up from the midst of the city and stood on the mountain, which is on the east side of the city. As Ezekiel watches in visions, he sees the glory of God departing from the temple in Jerusalem, leaving the inner court and moving to the outer court, and then rising and moving out to the Mount of Olives, and rising up from there. Of course, this prophecy was fulfilled when our Lord moved out of the temple, down across the Kidron Valley, up the side of the Mount of Olives, and into the Garden of Gethsemane.
  34. 34. And later, after the crucifixion and the resurrection, He ascended from that mountain into glory. God sends the message to His people through Ezekiel that the reason His glory is departing is because they have not followed Him but the world around them. Ezekiel 11:12 NKJV 12 And you shall know that I am the Lord; for you have not walked in My statutes nor executed My judgments, but have done according to the customs of the Gentiles (the world) which are all around you. But God always carries out His plan that involves forgiveness and grace and love for those who do follow His ways. Ezekiel 11:17-20 NKJV 17 Therefore say, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “I will gather you from the peoples, assemble you from the countries where you have been scattered, and I will give you the land of Israel.”’ 18 And they will go there, and they will take away all its detestable things and all its abominations from there. 19 Then I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within them, and take the stony heart out of their flesh, and give them a heart of flesh, 20 that they may walk in My statutes and keep My judgments and do them; and they shall be My people, and I will be their God. At this point there comes a lengthy passage where Ezekiel traces the degradation of man, the result of men's rejection of God's grace. And he tells how God struggles with those people, calling them; how He tries to win them, to waken them to the foolishness of turning their backs on the glory of God. At last they go through times of difficulty and heartache and punishment, as God seeks constantly to bring them to their senses, to waken them to what they are doing---to show them that man is made to fellowship with God and that without God he only goes farther and farther into weakness and folly and degradation. Here you find the reasons why man is debauched and degraded, and Ezekiel sets forth the righteousness of God's judgment. When man chooses to avoid the God Who made him, what else is there but judgment?
  35. 35. If we neglect God, Who is utterly essential to our being, and we refuse to give heed to His love and His grace, then the only thing left for us is to experience the results of turning our backs to Him. The prophet sees through all the judgment that came upon this people, he sees through to the forces behind. In chapter 28 there is a remarkable passage where the prophet speaks about the judgment upon the land of Tyre and Sidon. He speaks of the prince of Tyre and, behind him, an individual whom he calls the king of Tyre. Most Bible scholars have recognized that, because of the height of vision from which this prophet speaks, he is talking not only about the actual prince of the city of Tyre---the man who was then on the throne in that seafaring city---but he is looking beyond him and the visible things of Tyre, to that sinister individual he calls the king of Tyre. This king symbolizes what are referred to in the New Testament as principalities and powers, the world rulers of this present darkness who manipulate things on earth and cause events we see recorded in our daily newspapers. In other words, these are the Satanic powers. In chapter 28 you have a passage that many Bible scholars think can be fully understood only as it applies to the fall of Satan himself. And this is one of only two passages in the whole Bible that describes the fall of Satan: Ezekiel 28:2 NKJV 2 “Son of man, say to the prince of Tyre, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “Because your heart is lifted up, And you say, ‘I am a god, Ezekiel 28:12b-13a NKJV 12b “You were the seal of perfection, Full of wisdom and perfect in beauty. 13a You were in Eden, the garden of God; Ezekiel 28:15 NKJV 15 You were perfect in your ways from the day you were created, Till iniquity was found in you.
  36. 36. Ezekiel 28:17-18a NKJV 17 “Your heart was lifted up because of your beauty; You corrupted your wisdom for the sake of your splendor; I cast you to the ground, I laid you before kings, That they might gaze at you. 18a “You defiled your sanctuaries By the multitude of your iniquities, By the iniquity of your trading; Therefore I brought fire from your midst; END RAY STEDMAN

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