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CHAPTER 1

1 NOW it came to pass in the thirtieth year, 296296     The thirtieth year. The date at which this reckoning commences is doubful Calvin dates from a Jubilee, (vol. 1, p. 52.,) but Jerome from the 18th year of King Josiah, when the book of the law was found. Origen, Hom. I., understands it of Ezekiel’s age; and so does Gregory, Hom. II. Maldonatus interprets it of the captivity, and quotes the authority of Theodoret. Pradus, as quoted by Rosenmfiner, agrees with Jerome. The Editor refers his readers once for all to the valuable commentary of Rosenmuller on this Prophet for all kinds of valuable critical information; while the English student will find the notes to Archbishop Newcome’s version very judicious. in the fourth month, on the fifth day of the month, as I was among the captives by the river Chebar, that the heavens were opened, and I saw visions of God.

2 In the fifth day of the month, in the fifth year of the captivity of King Jehoiakim,

3 The word of Jehovah came to Ezekiel, son of Buzi the priest, in the land of the Chaldreans, near the river Chebar, and the land of Jehovah was upon him there.

4 And I looked, and, behold, tempestuous wind coming from the north; a great cloud, and a fire folding round itself, and a brightness was round about it; and out of the midst there was, as it were, the appearance of Hasmal in the midst of the fire.

5 And in the middle of this, was the likeness of four living creatures, and their aspect was the likeness of a man:

6 They had each four faces and four wings,

7 Their feet were straight, and the sole of their feet like that of a calf’s foot, (or round, volume 1,) and they cast forth sparks like the appearance of polished brass:

8 And they had human hands under their wings on their four sides; and they had four faces and wings.

9 And each wing was connected with the next wing: when they moved they did not turn back: each animal went forward in the direction of his face.

10 As to the likeness of their faces, these four had the face of a man and the face of a lion on the right side; and on the left, these four had the face of an ox and the face of an eagle.

11 Their faces, then, and their wings were extended 297297     Or, “divided.” See vol. 1, p. 75, note.. The MSS. vary slightly. Calvin has translated very literally; and the Prophet’s language being so elliptical, it is almost impossible to present a perfectly accurate representation of “a cherub” to a modern inquirer. from above, and each wing was bound to its neighbor, and two covered their body.

12 And each walked in the direction of its face; and wheresoever the spirit (or will,) proceeded, they proceeded they did not return in their course.

13 As to the likeness of the living creatures, their aspect was like coals of burning fire, like the appearance of lamps passing up and down between the living creatures: and the fire was ‘bright, and lightning’ issued from it.

14 And the living creatures ran and returned like lightning.

15 While I was; beholding’ the living creatures, behold one wheel on the earth, near each living, creature, at right angles, 298298     Explained in a note, p. 82, vol. 1 See Jerome in Comment. ad Heseam, cap. 12, and Chrysos. Orat. 35, p. 448, ed. Morell...Rosen. in ver. at the face of each.

16 The appearance of the wheels and their workmanship was like chrysolite: and they were all alike’ and their appearance and their form were like one wheel within another.

17 When they moved forward, they went upon their four sides: they did not turn back when they proceeded.

18 And I beheld their circumferences, and their size, and their terribleness; and their strakes were full of eyes, round about these four.

19 And when the living creatures walked, the wheels moved beside them; and when the living creatures were raised from the earth, the wheels were raised with them. 299299     Alexander Knox, who beautifies whatever he touches upon, has applied this verse most happily in illustration of the “exquisitely regular” movements of the almighty, and the “attendant machinery of Providence.” — Remains, Ezekiel 6:9.

20 Withersoever the spirit led the living creatures, tither it also led the wheels: the wheels were raised up also with the living creatures, because their spirit was in the wheels also.

21 When the animals moved forward, the wheels did the same: they both were stationary and both elevated together; because the spirit of the animals was in the wheels.

22 Above the heads of the living creatures was the likeness of a firmament, as the appearance of terrible crystal stretched over and above their heads.

23 And under the firmament their wings were straight, each towards its neighbor: and each living creature had two wings, which covered their bodies on this side and on that.

24 And I heard the voice of their wings, like the voice of mighty waters, and like the voice of God’ the voice of their speech was like the sound of an army when they moved forward; and when they stood, they let down their wings.

25 And there was a voice from the firmament over their heads when they stood and let down their wings.

26 And above the firmament over their heads was the likeness of a throne, like the vision of a sapphire stone: and above the likeness of the throne was an image like the aspect of a man upon it.

27 And I saw, as it were, the color of amber, like the appearance of fire round about within it: from the appearance of his loins, both upwards and downwards, I saw the aspect of fire, and a brightness all round about him.

28 Like the appearance of a bow in a cloud on a rainy day, such was the aspect of his brightness round about. This was a vision of the similitude of Jehovah’s glory: and I gazed at it, and fell upon my face, and heard a voice speaking unto me. And he said unto me, —


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