Ezekiel 10:5
And the sound of the cherubims' wings was heard even to the outer court, as the voice of the Almighty God when he speaks.
Jump to: BarnesBensonBICalvinCambridgeClarkeDarbyEllicottExpositor'sExp DctGaebeleinGSBGillGrayHaydockHastingsHomileticsJFBKDKellyKJTLangeMacLarenMHCMHCWParkerPoolePulpitSermonSCOTTBWESTSK
(5) The sound of the cherubims’ wings.—This sound indicates that the cherubim were already in motion, for when they stood they “let down their wings” (Ezekiel 1:24). They were now just on the eve of going away, and the movement was a great one, so that the sound was “heard even to the outer court” Throughout this chapter the s in cherubims is quite unnecessary, since cherubim is already the Hebrew plural of cherub.

Ezekiel 10:6-7 are not subsequent in time to Ezekiel 10:5, but are simply a more particular account, given parenthetically, of what had already been briefly mentioned in Ezekiel 10:2.

Ezekiel 10:8-17 are largely a repetition of the description of the vision in Ezekiel 1, but it is here given in parts, parenthetically, in connection with the progress of the narrative. The course of the narrative itself is as follows :—After the man in linen has gone out (Ezekiel 10:7), a command is issued, “O wheel.” They were to set themselves in motion. Then (Ezekiel 10:15) they “were lifted up,” and (Ezekiel 10:18-19) “the glory of the Lord departed” from the Temple, and “mounted up from the earth.” The repetition of the description of Ezekiel 1 is by no means accidental, but serves partly to connect the various particulars with the course of the symbolic narrative, and mainly to emphasize the identity of the glory departing from the Temple with the Divine glory before seen. There are, however, several variations from the former description. Particularly in Ezekiel 10:12 (as in Revelation 4:6) there is mention of the abundance of eyes, a symbol of vigilance and activity, covering the whole body of the cherubim and the wheels. In Ezekiel 10:14, after saying that “every one had four faces,” as in Ezekiel 1, the particular faces are described, but with this important variation :—the first is said to be “the face of a cherub,” instead of “the face of an ox,” as in Ezekiel 1; more exactly it is “the face of the cherub,” since the Hebrew has the definite article. The reason of this variation and the meaning of “the face of the cherub” are both obscure. In Ezekiel 10:22 it is expressly said that their faces were the same as those seen by the Chebar; and again, in Ezekiel 10:15-20, the whole vision is described as the “living creature” seen by the Chebar. It is plain, therefore, that the variation is only in the description, and not in the thing described. The most natural solution of the difficulty in the text as it stands is that a cherub was ordinarily represented with the face of an ox. But there is no evidence of this, and it is not impossible that a slight error may have been introduced into the text. The Greek version did not contain the verse in the time of St. Jerome, and in its Roman form does not now. It was introduced into the Alexandrian copies from the later version of Theodotion, and Theodoret does not recognise it.

10:1-7 The fire being taken from between the wheels, under the cherubim, ch. 1:13, seems to have signified the wrath of God to be executed upon Jerusalem. It intimated that the fire of Divine wrath, which kindles judgment upon a people, is just and holy; and in the great day, the earth, and all the works that are therein, will be burnt up.The Almighty God - El Shaddai; compare the Genesis 17:1 note. 5. sound of … wings—prognostic of great and awful changes.

voice of … God—the thunder (Ps 29:3, &c.).

There was a great and dreadful noise to awaken, or stop the mouths of sinners; whether this was an applause of Christ’s righteous procedure, or any sound of alarm, or both, let your own judgment determine. See Ezekiel 1:24.

Was heard; such as might well be heard; and as the vision represented such a great sound to the prophet, he reports it to the Jews; not that the elders now with Ezekiel did hear this, or that such an audible sound was heard in Jerusalem, but it is all represented to the prophet, and by him to them.

The outer court; this was the court of the women.

As the voice of the Almighty; as a mighty and terrible thunder, which is, Psalm 29:3-5, the voice of the Lord.

When he speaketh; as when he spake on Mount Sinai, which made them all fear, and the sight so terrible, that Moses himself trembled, Hebrews 12. And the sound of the cherubim's wings was heard even to the outer court,.... Or outward court. The sound of the Gospel, which is a joyful sound; a sound of love, grace, and mercy; of life, liberty, peace, pardon, righteousness, and salvation by Christ; the sound of this in the swift ministry of the apostles, signified by the "cherubim's wings", went into all the earth, and throughout the whole Gentile world; by which many souls were quickened and enlightened; many churches were formed; and the glory of the Lord, being revealed, was seen by all flesh; and the whole world was filled with the brightness of the Lord's glory, as it will be again, and more abundantly, in the latter day: and this sound was

as the voice of the Almighty God when he speaketh; the Gospel is as thunder, which is the voice of God; and the ministers of it are "Boanergeses", "sons of thunder", Mark 3:17, it shakes the conscience; shows men their danger; and points at the Saviour: it is not the word of man, but in deed and in truth the word of God: it is the voice of Christ, who is the Almighty; and it appears to be so, by its powerful effects, when attended with a divine energy, in quickening dead sinners; enlightening dark minds; unstopping deaf ears; softening hard hearts; and turning men from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God; it is so when God speaks in it, and by it; when it comes not in word only, but in the Holy Ghost, and in power.

And the {d} sound of the cherubim's wings was heard even to the outer court, as the voice of the Almighty God when he speaketh.

(d) Read Eze 1:24.

5. sound of the cherubims’ wings] It is to be supposed that some movement of the living creatures’ wings accompanied the rising of the divine glory from above them, as it is said that when they stood their wings dropped (Ezekiel 1:24). The language of Ezekiel 10:18 (cf. Ezekiel 9:3) excludes the supposition that the cherubim as well as the glory moved towards the threshold (Ew.). Jehovah’s “speaking” is the thunder (ch. Ezekiel 1:24), but the statement that the sound was heard in the outer court is strange, as the distance was not great. In Ezekiel’s day, however, the outer court had not the symmetry which he gives it in his final vision but extended to a considerable distance from the house, and may have been regarded as including the royal buildings (see the plans Ency. Brit., and Stade’s Hist., vol. i).Verses 5, 6. - And the sound of the cherubim. The use of God Almighty (El Shaddai; comp. Exodus 6:3), the name of God as ruling over nature, while Jehovah expressed his covenant relationship to Israel, is, it may be noted, characteristic of the early stage of the religion of Israel (Genesis 17:1; Genesis 28:3; Genesis 43:14; Genesis 48:3). Shaddai alone appears eighty-one times in the Book of Job. Psalm 29. explains the voice of El Shaddai (though there it is "the voice of Jehovah") as meaning the roar of the thunder. The hands of the "living creatures," now recognized as cherubim, had been mentioned in Ezekiel 1:8, and it is one of those hands that gives the fire into the hands of the linen vested minister of wrath. The elemental forces of nature, of which the cherubim are, partly at least, the symbols, are working out the purposes of Jehovah. The two words translated wheels are different in the Hebrew. The first is singular and collective (galgal, the "whirling thing," used of the wheel of a war chariot, Ezekiel 23:24; Isaiah 5:28), and might well be translated "chariot" here. The second, that used in Ezekiel 1:15, 16, also in the singular, is applied to the single wheel of the four by which the angel, ministers stood. The Angels which Smite Jerusalem

At the call of Jehovah, His servants appear to execute the judgment. - Ezekiel 9:1. And He called in my ears with a loud voice, saying, Come hither, ye watchmen of the city, and every one his instrument of destruction in his hand. Ezekiel 9:2. And behold six men came by the way of the upper gage, which is directed toward the north, every one with his smashing-tool in his hand; and a man in the midst of them, clothed in white linen, and writing materials by his hip; and they came and stood near the brazen altar. Ezekiel 9:3. And the glory of the God of Israel rose up from the cherub, upon which it was, to the threshold of the house, and called to the man clothed in white linen, by whose hip the writing materials were. - פּקדּות העיר does not mean the punishments of the city. This rendering does not suit the context, since it is not the punishments that are introduced, but the men who execute them; and it is not established by the usage of the language. פּקדּה is frequently used, no doubt, in the sense of visitation or chastisement (e.g., Isaiah 10:3; Hosea 9:7); but it is not met with in the plural in this sense. In the plural it only occurs in the sense of supervision or protectorate, in which sense it occurs not only in Jeremiah 52:11 and Ezekiel 44:11, but also (in the singular) in Isaiah 60:17, and as early as Numbers 3:38, where it relates to the presidency of the priests, and very frequently in the Chronicles. Consequently פּקדּות are those whom God has appointed to watch over the city, the city-guard (2 Kings 11:18), - not earthly, but heavenly watchmen, - who are now to inflict punishment upon the ungodly, as the authorities appointed by God. קרבוּ is an imperative Piel, as in Isaiah 41:21, and must not be altered into קרבוּ (Kal), as Hitzig proposes. The Piel is used in an intransitive sense, festinanter appropinquavit, as in Ezekiel 36:8. The persons called come by the way of the upper northern gate of the temple, to take their stand before Jehovah, whose glory had appeared in the inner court. The upper gate is the gate leading from the outer court to the inner, or upper court, which stood on higher ground, - the gate mentioned in Ezekiel 8:3 and Ezekiel 8:5. In the midst of the six men furnished with smashing-tools there was one clothed in white byssus, with writing materials at his side. The dress and equipment, as well as the instructions which he afterwards receives and executes, show him to be the prince or leader of the others.

Kliefoth calls in question the opinion that these seven men are angels; but without any reason. Angels appearing in human form are frequently called אנשׁים or אישׁ, according to their external habitus. But the number seven neither presupposes the dogma of the seven archangels, nor is copied from the seven Parsic amschaspands. The dress worn by the high priest, when presenting the sin-offering on the great day of atonement (Leviticus 16:4, Leviticus 16:23), was made of בּד, i.e., of white material woven from byssus thread (see the comm. on Exodus 28:42). It has been inferred from this, that the figure clothed in white linen was the angel of Jehovah, who appears as the heavenly high priest, to protect and care for his own. In support of this, the circumstance may be also adduced, that the man whom Daniel saw above the water of the Tigris, and whose appearance is described, in Daniel 10:5-6, in the same manner as that of Jehovah in Ezekiel 1:4, Ezekiel 1:26-27, and that of the risen Christ in Revelation 1:13-15, appears clothed in בּדּים (Daniel 10:5; Daniel 12:6-7).

(Note: לבוּשׁ בּדּים is rendered by the lxx, in the passage before us, ἐνδεδυκώς ποδήρῃ. It is in accordance with this that Christ is described in Revelation 1:13 as clothed with a ποδήρης, and not after Daniel 10:5, as Hengstenberg supposes. In Daniel 10:5, the Septuagint has ἐνδεδυμένος βαδδίν or τὰ βαδδίν. In other places, the Sept. rendering of בּד is λίνον (thus Leviticus 16:4, Leviticus 16:23; Leviticus 6:3; Exodus 28:42, etc.); and hence the λίνον λαμπρόν of Revelation 15:6 answers to the בּד made of שׁשׁ, βύσσος, and is really the same as the βύσσινον λαμπρόν of Revelation 19:8.)

Nevertheless, we cannot regard this view as established. The shining white talar, which is evidently meant by the plural בּדּים, occurring only here and in Daniel (ut. sup.), is not a dress peculiar to the angel of Jehovah or to Christ. The seven angels, with the vials of wrath, also appear in garments of shining white linen (ἐνδεδυμένοι λίνον καθαρὸν λαμπρόν, Revelation 15:6); and the shining white colour, as a symbolical representation of divine holiness and glory (see comm. on Leviticus 16:4 and Revelation 19:8), is the colour generally chosen for the clothing both of the heavenly spirits and of "just men made perfect" (Revelation 19:8). Moreover, the angel with the writing materials here is described in a totally different manner from the appearance of Jehovah in Ezekiel 1 and Daniel 10, or that of Christ in Revelation 1; and there is nothing whatever to indicate a being equal with God. Again, the distinction between him and the other six men leads to no other conclusion, than that he stood in the same relation to them as the high priest to the Levites, or the chancellor to the other officials. This position is indicated by the writing materials on his hips, i.e., in the girdle on his hips, in which scribes in the East are accustomed to carry their writing materials (vid., Rosenmller, A. u. N. Morgenland, IV. p. 323). He is provided with these for the execution of the commission given to him in Ezekiel 9:4. In this way the description can be very simply explained, without the slightest necessity for our resorting to Babylonian representations of the god Nebo, i.e., Mercury, as the scribe of heaven. The seven men take their station by the altar of burnt-offering, because the glory of God, whose commands they were about to receive, had taken up its position there for the moment (Kliefoth); not because the apostate priesthood was stationed there (Hvernick). The glory of Jehovah, however, rose up from the cherub to the threshold of the house. The meaning of this is not that it removed from the interior of the sanctuary to the outer threshold of the temple-building (Hvernick), for it was already stationed, according to Ezekiel 8:16, above the cherub, between the porch and the altar. It went back from thence to the threshold of the temple-porch, through which one entered the Holy Place, to give its orders there. The reason for leaving its place above the cherubim (the singular כּרוּב is used collectively) to do this, was not that "God would have had to turn round in order to address the seven from the throne, since, according to Ezekiel 8:4 and Ezekiel 8:16, He had gone from the north gate of the outer court into the inner court, and His servants had followed Him" (Hitzig); for the cherubim moved in all four directions, and therefore God, even from the throne, could turn without difficulty to every side. God left His throne, that He might issue His command for the judgment upon Israel from the threshold of the temple, and show Himself to be the judge who would forsake the throne which He had assumed in Israel. This command He issues from the temple court, because the temple was the place whence God attested Himself to His people, both by mercy and judgment.

Ezekiel 10:5 Interlinear
Ezekiel 10:5 Parallel Texts

Ezekiel 10:5 NIV
Ezekiel 10:5 NLT
Ezekiel 10:5 ESV
Ezekiel 10:5 NASB
Ezekiel 10:5 KJV

Ezekiel 10:5 Bible Apps
Ezekiel 10:5 Parallel
Ezekiel 10:5 Biblia Paralela
Ezekiel 10:5 Chinese Bible
Ezekiel 10:5 French Bible
Ezekiel 10:5 German Bible

Bible Hub

Ezekiel 10:4
Top of Page
Top of Page