Ezekiel 1:25
And there was a voice from the firmament that was over their heads, when they stood, and had let down their wings.
Jump to: BarnesBensonBICalvinCambridgeClarkeDarbyEllicottExpositor'sExp DctGaebeleinGSBGillGrayHaydockHastingsHomileticsJFBKDKellyKJTLangeMacLarenMHCMHCWParkerPoolePulpitSermonSCOTTBWESTSK
(25) A voice from the firmament.—Rather, from above the firmament, not as proceeding from the firmament itself. This is a new feature in the vision: the voice is quite different from the sounds mentioned before, and although not here expressly said to have been articulate, yet it is probably to be identified with the Divine voice spoken of in Ezekiel 1:28, Ezekiel 3:12, and elsewhere. The latter part of the verse, literally translated, is simply, In, or at, their standing they let down their wings, and may be simply a repetition of the last clause of the preceding verse. In its connection, however, it seems rather to convey the idea of a fresh act of reverence towards the majesty above. When the voice was heard the cherubim stood still, the mighty sounds of their going were hushed, and their wings fell motionless, all in the attitude of reverential attention.

The vision now advances to another and final stage. We have had the whirlwind from the north, with its great cloud and infolding fire, as the background on which the whole is portrayed; then the cherubim, with all their marvellous symbolism; the wondrous and terrible wheels, connecting them with the earth below, the glowing firmament, connecting them with the throne above; and now we come to the throne itself, and to Him that sat upon it.

1:15-25 Providence, represented by the wheels, produces changes. Sometimes one spoke of the wheel is uppermost, sometimes another; but the motion of the wheel on its own axletree is regular and steady. We need not despond in adversity; the wheels are turning round and will raise us in due time, while those who presume in prosperity know not how soon they may be cast down. The wheel is near the living creatures; the angels are employed as ministers of God's providence. The spirit of the living creatures was in the wheels; the same wisdom, power, and holiness of God, that guide and govern the angels, by them order all events in this lower world. The wheel had four faces, denoting that the providence of God exerts itself in all parts. Look every way upon the wheel of providence, it has a face toward you. Their appearance and work were as a wheel in the middle of a wheel. The disposals of Providence seem to us dark, perplexed, and unaccountable, yet are all wisely ordered for the best. The motion of these wheels was steady, regular, and constant. They went as the Spirit directed, therefore returned not. We should not have to undo that by repentance which we have done amiss, if we followed the guidance of the Spirit. The rings, or rims of the wheels were so vast, that when put in motion the prophet was afraid to look upon them. The consideration of the height and depth of God's counsel should awe us. They were full of eyes round about. The motions of Providence are all directed by infinite Wisdom. All events are determined by the eyes of the Lord, which are in every place beholding the evil and the good; for there is no such thing as chance or fortune. The firmament above was a crystal, glorious, but terribly so. That which we take to be a dark cloud, is to God clear as crystal, through which he looks upon all the inhabitants of the earth. When the angels had roused a careless world, they let down their wings, that God's voice might be plainly heard. The voice of Providence is to open men's ears to the voice of the word. Sounds on earth should awaken our attention to the voice from heaven; for how shall we escape, if we turn away from Him that speaks from thence.A voice from the firmament - Compare Ezekiel 3:12; in the midst of the tumult, are heard articulate sounds declaring the glory of God. 25. let down … wings—While the Almighty gave forth His voice, they reverently let their wings fall, to listen stilly to His communication. And; or, for; so the Latin. Two senses may be of these words in this verse. Either,

1. These living creatures thus let down their wings and ceased from acting, because they were commanded so to do by the voice from above the firmament, which they readily obey. Or,

2. That they stood, let down their wings, and hushed the noise, that the prophet might hear what was spoken from above. The former comes nearest the sense of the Latin, the latter nearer to our English, and either may well enough suit the text and context. And there was a voice from the firmament that was over their heads,.... Which was the voice of Christ upon the throne, above the firmament, over the heads of the living creatures; which directed them when and where to go, and what to do, and when and where to stop:

when they stood, and had let down their wings; either encouraging them to lift them up, and go on in their work, notwithstanding the sense they had of their own weakness and unworthiness; or, having done their work, calling them to himself in heaven.

And there was a voice from the firmament that was over their heads, when they stood, and had let down their wings.
25. from the firmament] Rather: above the firmament, as R.V. The voice must be that of him who sat above the firmament. This voice might be supposed to command the movement or halting of the chariot, though such a voice seems nowhere else referred to. The verse repeats the last words of the preceding verse and otherwise is almost identical in words with the following one, and possibly it may not be original.

they stood, and had let down] Render as Ezekiel 1:24, when they stood, they let down their wings. The last words might be rendered: their wings dropped; so Ezekiel 1:24.Verse 25. - And there was a voice from the firmament. Revised Version gives above. The prophet's silence suggests that what he heard was at first ineffable (comp. 2 Corinthians 12:4), perhaps unintelligible. All that he knew was that an awful voice, like thunder (comp. John 12:29), came from above the expanse of azure, and that it stilled the motion of the wings, working peace, as in the midst of the endless agitations of the universe. The wings that had been stretched upward are now folded, like the others. The four wheels beside the cherubim. - Ezekiel 1:15. And I saw the creatures, and, lo, there was a wheel upon the earth beside the creatures, towards their four fronts. Ezekiel 1:16. The appearance of the wheels and their work was like the appearance of the chrysolite; and all four had one kind of figure: and their appearance and their work was as if one wheel were within the other. Ezekiel 1:17. Towards their four sides they went when they moved: they turned not as they went. Ezekiel 1:18. And their felloes, they were high and terrible; and their felloes were full of eyes round about in all the four. Ezekiel 1:19. And when the creatures moved, the wheels moved beside them; and when the creatures raised themselves up from the earth, the wheels also raised themselves. Ezekiel 1:20. Whithersoever the spirit was to go, they went in the direction in which the spirit was to go; and the wheels raised themselves beside them: for the spirit of the creatures was in the wheels. Ezekiel 1:21. When the former moved, the latter moved also; when the former stood, the latter stood; and when the former raised themselves from the ground, the wheels raised themselves beside them: for the spirit of the creatures was in the wheels. - The words, "and I saw the creatures," prepare the way for the transition to the new object which presented itself in these creatures to the eye of the seer. By the side of these creatures upon the ground he sees a wheel, and that at the four fronts, or front faces of the creatures. The singular suffix in לארבּעת פּניו can neither be referred, with Rosenmller, to the chariot, which is not mentioned at all, nor, with Hitzig, to the preposition אצל, nor, with Hvernick, Maurer, and Kliefoth, to אופן, and so be understood as if every wheel looked towards four sides, because a second wheel was inserted in it at right angles. This meaning is not to be found in the words. The suffix refers ad sensum to חיּות (Ewald), or, to express it more correctly, to the figure of the cherubim with its four faces turned to the front, conceived as a unity - as one creature (החיּה, Ezekiel 1:22). Accordingly, we have so to represent the matter, that by the side of the four cherubim, namely, beside his front face, a wheel was to be seen upon the earth. Ezekiel then saw four wheels, one on each front of a cherub, and therefore immediately speaks in Ezekiel 1:16 of wheels (in the plural). In this verse מראה is adspectus, and מעשׂה "work;" i.e., both statements employing the term "construction," although in the first hemistich only the appearance, in the second only the construction, of the wheels is described. תּרשׁישׁ is a chrysolite of the ancients, the topaz of the moderns, - a stone having the lustre of gold. The construction of the wheels was as if one wheel were within a wheel, i.e., as if in the wheel a second were inserted at right angles, so that without being turned it could go towards all the four sides. גּבּיהן, in Ezekiel 1:18, stands absolutely. "As regards their felloes," they possessed height and terribleness-the latter because they were full of eyes all round. Hitzig arbitrarily understands גּבהּ of the upper sides; and יראה, after the Arabic, of the under side, or that which lies towards the back. The movement of the wheels completely followed the movement of the creatures (Ezekiel 1:19-21), because the spirit of the creature was in the wheels. החיּה, in Ezekiel 1:20 and Ezekiel 1:21, is not the "principle of life" (Hvernick), but the cherubic creatures conceived as a unity, as in Ezekiel 1:22, where the meaning is undoubted. The sense is: the wheels were, in their motion and rest, completely bound by the movements and rest of the creatures, because the spirit which ruled in them was also in the wheels, and regulated their going, standing, and rising upwards. By the רוּח the wheels are bound in one with the cherub-figures, but not by means of a chariot, to or upon which the cherubim were attached.
Ezekiel 1:25 Interlinear
Ezekiel 1:25 Parallel Texts

Ezekiel 1:25 NIV
Ezekiel 1:25 NLT
Ezekiel 1:25 ESV
Ezekiel 1:25 NASB
Ezekiel 1:25 KJV

Ezekiel 1:25 Bible Apps
Ezekiel 1:25 Parallel
Ezekiel 1:25 Biblia Paralela
Ezekiel 1:25 Chinese Bible
Ezekiel 1:25 French Bible
Ezekiel 1:25 German Bible

Bible Hub

Ezekiel 1:24
Top of Page
Top of Page