New Living Translation

Ezekiel 1

A Vision of Living Beings

1On July 31[a] of my thirtieth year,[b] while I was with the Judean exiles beside the Kebar River in Babylon, the heavens were opened and I saw visions of God. This happened during the fifth year of King Jehoiachin’s captivity. (The Lord gave this message to Ezekiel son of Buzi, a priest, beside the Kebar River in the land of the Babylonians,[c] and he felt the hand of the Lord take hold of him.)

As I looked, I saw a great storm coming from the north, driving before it a huge cloud that flashed with lightning and shone with brilliant light. There was fire inside the cloud, and in the middle of the fire glowed something like gleaming amber.[d] From the center of the cloud came four living beings that looked human, except that each had four faces and four wings. Their legs were straight, and their feet had hooves like those of a calf and shone like burnished bronze. Under each of their four wings I could see human hands. So each of the four beings had four faces and four wings. The wings of each living being touched the wings of the beings beside it. Each one moved straight forward in any direction without turning around.

10 Each had a human face in the front, the face of a lion on the right side, the face of an ox on the left side, and the face of an eagle at the back. 11 Each had two pairs of outstretched wings—one pair stretched out to touch the wings of the living beings on either side of it, and the other pair covered its body. 12 They went in whatever direction the spirit chose, and they moved straight forward in any direction without turning around.

13 The living beings looked like bright coals of fire or brilliant torches, and lightning seemed to flash back and forth among them. 14 And the living beings darted to and fro like flashes of lightning.

15 As I looked at these beings, I saw four wheels touching the ground beside them, one wheel belonging to each. 16 The wheels sparkled as if made of beryl. All four wheels looked alike and were made the same; each wheel had a second wheel turning crosswise within it. 17 The beings could move in any of the four directions they faced, without turning as they moved. 18 The rims of the four wheels were tall and frightening, and they were covered with eyes all around.

19 When the living beings moved, the wheels moved with them. When they flew upward, the wheels went up, too. 20 The spirit of the living beings was in the wheels. So wherever the spirit went, the wheels and the living beings also went. 21 When the beings moved, the wheels moved. When the beings stopped, the wheels stopped. When the beings flew upward, the wheels rose up, for the spirit of the living beings was in the wheels.

22 Spread out above them was a surface like the sky, glittering like crystal. 23 Beneath this surface the wings of each living being stretched out to touch the others’ wings, and each had two wings covering its body. 24 As they flew, their wings sounded to me like waves crashing against the shore or like the voice of the Almighty[e] or like the shouting of a mighty army. When they stopped, they let down their wings. 25 As they stood with wings lowered, a voice spoke from beyond the crystal surface above them.

26 Above this surface was something that looked like a throne made of blue lapis lazuli. And on this throne high above was a figure whose appearance resembled a man. 27 From what appeared to be his waist up, he looked like gleaming amber, flickering like a fire. And from his waist down, he looked like a burning flame, shining with splendor. 28 All around him was a glowing halo, like a rainbow shining in the clouds on a rainy day. This is what the glory of the Lord looked like to me. When I saw it, I fell face down on the ground, and I heard someone’s voice speaking to me.

Notas al pie

  1. 1:1a Hebrew On the fifth day of the fourth month, of the ancient Hebrew lunar calendar. A number of dates in Ezekiel can be cross-checked with dates in surviving Babylonian records and related accurately to our modern calendar. This event occurred on July 31, 593 B.c.
  2. 1:1b Or in the thirtieth year.
  3. 1:3 Or Chaldeans.
  4. 1:4 Or like burnished metal; also in 1:27.
  5. 1:24 Hebrew Shaddai.

New International Reader's Version

Ezekiel 1

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.

It 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. A 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.

I 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. I saw in the fire something that looked like four living creatures. They appeared to have the shape of a human being. But each of them had four faces and four wings. Their legs were straight. Their feet looked like the feet of a calf. They were as bright as polished bronze. The creatures had human hands under their wings on their four sides. All four of them had faces and wings. The wings of one touched the wings of another. Each of the creatures went straight ahead. They didn’t change their direction as they moved.

10 Here’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. 11 That’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. 12 All 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. 13 The 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. 14 The creatures raced back and forth like flashes of lightning.

15 As I looked at the living creatures, I saw wheels on the ground beside them. Each creature had four faces. 16 Here’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. 17 The wheels could go in any one of the four directions the creatures faced. The wheels didn’t change their direction as the creatures moved. 18 Their rims were high and terrifying. All four rims were full of eyes all the way around them.

19 When the living creatures moved, the wheels beside them moved. When the creatures rose from the ground, the wheels also rose. 20 Anywhere 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. 21 When 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.

22 Something that looked like a huge space was spread out above the heads of the living creatures. It gleamed like crystal. It was terrifying. 23 The wings of the creatures were spread out under the space. They reached out toward one another. Each creature had two wings covering its body. 24 When 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.

25 Then a voice came from above the huge space over their heads. They stood with their wings lowered. 26 Above 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. 27 From 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. 28 The 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.