In 597 B.C., Ezekiel was one of the exiles who were deported to Babylon by King Nebuchadnezzar. To give you perspective, at this same time, Jeremiah stayed back in Judah while Ezekiel would minister to those in Babylon. Ezekiel would give us a different side of the story and also prophecy what would happen to those who turned away from the Lord and to know who the Lord is. After the complete destruction of the temple years later, Ezekiel would prophecy about a future hope of a new Jerusalem
Vs. 3, “the word of the Lord came to Ezekiel the priest, the son of Buzi, b by the Kebar River in the land of the Babylonians. There the hand of the Lord was upon him.” At the age of thirty (vs. 1), Ezekiel was now preparing to be a full-time priest, but like Jeremiah, God would call him to be a prophet. And what a calling/vision God would give Ezekiel! The description of these four creatures are the same that John saw in Revelations 4 & 5. The human face represented God’s greatest creation, the lion represented the fierciest animal, the ox was the greatest domesticated animal and the eagle is the greatest flying animal. These four symbolize God’s creation and they all would submit under their Creator. The wheels would be symbolic that God is moving and active…even in the exile.
Regarding application…God is Here. Vs. 28, “Like the appearance of a rainbow in the clouds on a rainy day, so was the radiance around him. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord. When I saw it, I fell facedown, and I heard the voice of one speaking.” It’s important to remember that this was a very sad and tragic time for Ezekiel and God’s people. There wasn’t much hope and things were getting worse. But, God would show his faithfulenss (rainbow) and come to not just Ezekiel but all of the exiles. The vision was one that would be evident of God’s presence. Question: Do you believe God is here? When Ezekiel realized it, what did he do? He fell facedown in reverance and awe. Each day, we can encounter this very same God! The Father, The Son and the Holy Spirit! Turn to Him today and no matter what trials you may be having, trust in the Lord!