The Lord Gives Ezekiel Visions of His Glory
1I was 30 years old. I was with my people. We had been taken away from our country. We were by the Kebar River in the land of Babylon. On the fifth day of the fourth month, the heavens were opened. I saw visions of God.
2It was the fifth day of the month. Jehoiachin had been king of Judah. It was the fifth year since he had been brought to Babylon as a prisoner. 3A message from the Lord came to me. I was by the Kebar River in Babylon. The power of the Lord came on me there. I am Ezekiel the priest, the son of Buzi.
4I looked up and saw a windstorm coming from the north. I saw a huge cloud. The fire of lightning was flashing out of it. Bright light surrounded it. The center of the fire looked like glowing metal. 5I saw in the fire something that looked like four living creatures. They appeared to have the shape of a human being. 6But each of them had four faces and four wings. 7Their legs were straight. Their feet looked like the feet of a calf. They were as bright as polished bronze. 8The creatures had human hands under their wings on their four sides. All four of them had faces and wings. 9The wings of one touched the wings of another. Each of the creatures went straight ahead. They didn’t change their direction as they moved.
10Here’s what their faces looked like. Each of the four creatures had the face of a human being. On the right side each had the face of a lion. On the left each had the face of an ox. Each one also had an eagle’s face. 11That’s what their faces looked like. They each had two wings that spread out and lifted up. Each wing touched the wing of another creature on either side. They each had two other wings that covered their bodies. 12All the creatures went straight ahead. Anywhere their spirits would lead them to go, they would go. They didn’t change their direction as they went. 13The living creatures looked like burning coals of fire or like torches. Fire moved back and forth among the creatures. It was bright. Lightning flashed out of it. 14The creatures raced back and forth like flashes of lightning.
15As I looked at the living creatures, I saw wheels on the ground beside them. Each creature had four faces. 16Here’s how the wheels looked and worked. They gleamed like topaz. All four of them looked alike. Each one seemed to be made like a wheel inside another wheel at right angles. 17The wheels could go in any one of the four directions the creatures faced. The wheels didn’t change their direction as the creatures moved. 18Their rims were high and terrifying. All four rims were full of eyes all the way around them.
19When the living creatures moved, the wheels beside them moved. When the creatures rose from the ground, the wheels also rose. 20Anywhere their spirits would lead them to go, they would go. And the wheels would rise along with them. That’s because the spirits of the living creatures were in the wheels. 21When the living creatures moved, the wheels also moved. When the creatures stood still, they also stood still. When the creatures rose from the ground, the wheels rose along with them. That’s because the spirits of the living creatures were in the wheels.
22Something that looked like a huge space was spread out above the heads of the living creatures. It gleamed like crystal. It was terrifying. 23The wings of the creatures were spread out under the space. They reached out toward one another. Each creature had two wings covering its body. 24When the living creatures moved, I heard the sound of their wings. It was like the roar of rushing waters. It sounded like the thundering voice of the Mighty God. It was like the loud noise an army makes. When the creatures stood still, they lowered their wings.
25Then a voice came from above the huge space over their heads. They stood with their wings lowered. 26Above the space over their heads was something that looked like a throne made out of lapis lazuli. On the throne high above was a figure that appeared to be a man. 27From his waist up he looked like glowing metal that was full of fire. From his waist down he looked like fire. Bright light surrounded him. 28The glow around him looked like a rainbow in the clouds on a rainy day.
That’s what the glory of the Lord looked like. When I saw it, I fell with my face toward the ground. Then I heard the voice of someone speaking.
1Now it came to pass in the thirtieth year, in the fourth month, in the fifth day of the month, as I was among the captives by the river of Chebar, that the heavens were opened, and I saw visions of God.1.1 captives: Heb. captivity 2In the fifth day of the month, which was the fifth year of king Jehoiachin’s captivity, 3The word of the LORD came expressly unto Ezekiel the priest, the son of Buzi, in the land of the Chaldeans by the river Chebar; and the hand of the LORD was there upon him.1.3 Ezekiel: Heb. Jehezkel
4¶ And I looked, and, behold, a whirlwind came out of the north, a great cloud, and a fire infolding itself, and a brightness was about it, and out of the midst thereof as the colour of amber, out of the midst of the fire.1.4 infolding…: Heb. catching itself 5Also out of the midst thereof came the likeness of four living creatures. And this was their appearance; they had the likeness of a man. 6And every one had four faces, and every one had four wings. 7And their feet were straight feet; and the sole of their feet was like the sole of a calf’s foot: and they sparkled like the colour of burnished brass.1.7 straight…: Heb. a straight foot 8And they had the hands of a man under their wings on their four sides; and they four had their faces and their wings. 9Their wings were joined one to another; they turned not when they went; they went every one straight forward. 10As for the likeness of their faces, they four had the face of a man, and the face of a lion, on the right side: and they four had the face of an ox on the left side; they four also had the face of an eagle. 11Thus were their faces: and their wings were stretched upward; two wings of every one were joined one to another, and two covered their bodies.1.11 stretched…: or, divided above 12And they went every one straight forward: whither the spirit was to go, they went; and they turned not when they went. 13As for the likeness of the living creatures, their appearance was like burning coals of fire, and like the appearance of lamps: it went up and down among the living creatures; and the fire was bright, and out of the fire went forth lightning. 14And the living creatures ran and returned as the appearance of a flash of lightning.
15¶ Now as I beheld the living creatures, behold one wheel upon the earth by the living creatures, with his four faces. 16The appearance of the wheels and their work was like unto the colour of a beryl: and they four had one likeness: and their appearance and their work was as it were a wheel in the middle of a wheel. 17When they went, they went upon their four sides: and they turned not when they went. 18As for their rings, they were so high that they were dreadful; and their rings were full of eyes round about them four.1.18 and their rings: or, and their strakes 19And when the living creatures went, the wheels went by them: and when the living creatures were lifted up from the earth, the wheels were lifted up. 20Whithersoever the spirit was to go, they went, thither was their spirit to go; and the wheels were lifted up over against them: for the spirit of the living creature was in the wheels.1.20 of…: or, of life 21When those went, these went; and when those stood, these stood; and when those were lifted up from the earth, the wheels were lifted up over against them: for the spirit of the living creature was in the wheels.1.21 of…: or, of life 22And the likeness of the firmament upon the heads of the living creature was as the colour of the terrible crystal, stretched forth over their heads above. 23And under the firmament were their wings straight, the one toward the other: every one had two, which covered on this side, and every one had two, which covered on that side, their bodies. 24And when they went, I heard the noise of their wings, like the noise of great waters, as the voice of the Almighty, the voice of speech, as the noise of an host: when they stood, they let down their wings. 25And there was a voice from the firmament that was over their heads, when they stood, and had let down their wings.
26¶ And above the firmament that was over their heads was the likeness of a throne, as the appearance of a sapphire stone: and upon the likeness of the throne was the likeness as the appearance of a man above upon it. 27And I saw as the colour of amber, as the appearance of fire round about within it, from the appearance of his loins even upward, and from the appearance of his loins even downward, I saw as it were the appearance of fire, and it had brightness round about. 28As the appearance of the bow that is in the cloud in the day of rain, so was the appearance of the brightness round about. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD. And when I saw it, I fell upon my face, and I heard a voice of one that spake.