The Old Testament book of Ezekiel tells us that God’s heavenly throne does not sit in a fixed location. It actually moves around over the earth and through the heavens, resting upon a mobile platform. This platform, transparent in nature with the appearance of gleaming crystal, is supported by four perpendicularly rotating wheels, each wheel being accompanied by a majestic angelic creature, or cherub.
The apostle John was also given a vision of these four heavenly creatures, leading worship, and serving God the Father around His throne. Seven centuries before John recorded his vision in the book of Revelation, the prophet Ezekiel was treated to his vision of these exotic living beings.
4 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. 5 From the center of the cloud came four living beings that looked human, 6 except that each had four faces and four wings. 7 Their legs were straight, and their feet had hooves like those of a calf and shone like burnished bronze. 8 Under each of their four wings I could see human hands. So each of the four beings had four faces and four wings. 9 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. Ezekiel 1:4-13 (NLT)
God revealed these mystical creatures to Ezekiel as part of his calling to serve as prophet to the people of Judah, now living in exile along the Kebar River in Nebuchadnezzar’s Babylon. These four intelligent and powerful beings were shown to be serving and worshiping God the Father. Unlike their roles in the book of Revelation, where they are seen bowing before God and leading multitudes in His worship, here they take up positions to allow the movement and transport of God’s throne, working in concert with each other as the Spirit leads them.
Ezekiel’s vision shows these living beings placed at the corner or face of a square, each facing outward away from the center, with God’s throne carried above them. Observed from any direction, one would see a different face on each cherub – from one direction, a human’s face, from another, a lion, an ox, or an eagle’s.
The picture of motion presented to Ezekiel confirms that the Father is active and intimately involved in the affairs of people. The different faces of the living beings give honor to all of God’s creation, but it is humans who are the main focus of His loving attention. God is not some distant Creator that sits back and lets people twist in the wind when trials come. He cares, and deeply desires that we seek Him to play a central role in our salvation, delivery, healing, recovery, or any reconstruction from our troubles.
Our Father is always busy and at work for us. As His Son told the disciples:
17 But Jesus replied, “My Father is always working, and so am I.” John 5:17 (NLT)
We experience the greatest fulfillment in life when we, like the heavenly creatures Ezekiel saw in his vision, live our lives with a willingness to serve alongside God. The Father is the King of heaven and earth, along with His Christ, to whom He has given all glory, honor, and authority. We are blessed with so many wonderful things, not least of which is complete forgiveness and the offer to spend an eternal life with God. With overflowing gratitude, we ask Him to show us the things that He would have us to do for Him, and to grant us His power to help carry them out.
May the Lord help us all to seek and to serve Him today.
What thing or things have you sensed that the Lord wants you to do in service to Him?
Father, thank You for working ceaselessly for our well-being. Help us to see the things that You would have us to do for You and grant us the power, the favor, and the courage to carry them out. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.