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Ezekiel 1

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1 Now it happened in the thirtieth year, in the fourth [month], in 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, which was the fifth year of king Jehoiachin's captivity,

3 the word of Yahweh came expressly to Ezekiel the priest, the son of Buzi, in the land of the Chaldeans by the river Chebar; and the hand of Yahweh was there on him.

4 I looked, and behold, a stormy wind came out of the north, a great cloud, with flashing lightning, and a brightness around it, and out of its midst as it were glowing metal, out of the midst of the fire.

5 Out of its midst came the likeness of four living creatures. This was their appearance: they had the likeness of a man.

6 Everyone had four faces, and each one of them had four wings.

7 Their feet were straight feet; and the sole of their feet was like the sole of a calf's foot; and they sparkled like burnished brass.

8 They had the hands of a man under their wings on their four sides; and the four of them had their faces and their wings [thus]:

9 their wings were joined one to another; they didn't turn when they went; each one went straight forward.

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

11 Such were their faces. Their wings were spread out above. Two wings of each one touched another, and two covered their bodies.

12 Each one went straight forward: where the spirit was to go, they went; they didn't turn when they went.

13 As for the likeness of the living creatures, their appearance was like burning coals of fire, like the appearance of torches: [the fire] went up and down among the living creatures; and the fire was bright, and out of the fire went forth lightning.

14 The living creatures ran and returned as the appearance of a flash of lightning.

15 Now as I saw the living creatures, behold, one wheel on the earth beside the living creatures, for each of the four faces of it.

16 The appearance of the wheels and their work was like a beryl: and the four of them had one likeness; and their appearance and their work was as it were a wheel within a wheel.

17 When they went, they went in their four directions: they didn't turn when they went.

18 As for their rims, they were high and dreadful; and the four of them had their rims full of eyes all around.

19 When the living creatures went, the wheels went beside them; and when the living creatures were lifted up from the earth, the wheels were lifted up.

20 Wherever the spirit was to go, they went; there was the spirit to go: and the wheels were lifted up beside them; for the spirit of the living creature was in the wheels.

21 When those went, these went; and when those stood, these stood; and when those were lifted up from the earth, the wheels were lifted up beside them: for the spirit of the living creature was in the wheels.

22 Over the head of the living creature there was the likeness of an expanse, like the awesome crystal to look on, stretched forth over their heads above.

23 Under the expanse were their wings straight, the one toward the other: each one had two which covered on this side, and every one had two which covered on that side, their bodies.

24 When they went, I heard the noise of their wings like the noise of great waters, like the voice of the Almighty, a noise of tumult like the noise of an army: when they stood, they let down their wings.

25 There was a voice above the expanse that was over their heads: when they stood, they let down their wings.

26 Above the expanse that was over their heads was the likeness of a throne, as the appearance of a sapphire stone; and on the likeness of the throne was a likeness as the appearance of a man on it above.

27 I saw as it were glowing metal, as the appearance of fire within it all around, from the appearance of his waist and upward; and from the appearance of his waist and downward I saw as it were the appearance of fire, and there was brightness around him.

28 As the appearance of the rainbow that is in the cloud in the day of rain, so was the appearance of the brightness all around. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of Yahweh. When I saw it, I fell on my face, and I heard a voice of one that spoke.

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Swedenborg

Hlavní výklad ze Swedenborgových prací:

Arcana Coelestia 9457, 9509

Apocalypse Revealed 36, 322, 945

Conjugial Love 26

The Lord 52

Sacred Scripture 97

The Inner Meaning of the Prophets and Psalms 124


Další odkazy Swedenborga k této kapitole:

Arcana Coelestia 49, 425, 908, 934, 1042, 1992, 2162, ...

Apocalypse Revealed 14, 49, 239, 245, 466, 614, 629, ...

Divine Providence 134

Doctrine of the Lord 48

True Christian Religion 157, 260


References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 69, 70, 77, 239, 253, 277, 279, ...

Coronis (An Appendix to True Christian Religion) 60

Spiritual Experiences 255

Scriptural Confirmations 2, 4, 22, 52

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Word/Phrase Explanations

thirtieth
'Thirty' has a twofold significance because it is is the product of five and six, and also three and ten. From five multiplied by six,...

fourth
'The fourth watch' signifies the first state of the church at break of day, when good begins to act by truth.

month
'A month' has respect to the state of truth in a person. 'A month' signifies a full state. Month,' as in Genesis 29, signifies the...

fifth
Five also signifies all things of one part.

river
'Rivers' signify truths in abundance serving the rational self, and so, the understanding, for the purpose of doctrine and life. 'Rivers' or 'floods' signify temptations....

heavens
Heavens are celestial and spiritual things. Consequently, they are inmost things, both of the Lord's kingdom in heaven the and in the earth. This also...

opened
To open,' as in Revelation 9, signifies communication and conjunction.

saw
To look,' as in Genesis 18:22, signifies thinking, because seeing denotes understanding. Look not back behind thee,' as in Genesis 19:17, means that Lot, who...

god
The Lord is love itself, expressed in the form of wisdom itself. Love, then, is His essence, His inmost. Wisdom - the loving understanding of...

the Word
In general, we tend to be very aware of how knowing what's true leads to doing what is good. That starts as children, with parents...

word
'Word,' as in Psalms 119:6-17, stands for doctrine in general. 'The Word,' as in Psalms 147:18, signifies divine good united with divine truth. 'Word,' as...

Yahweh
The Lord, in the simplest terms, is love itself expressed as wisdom itself. In philosophic terms, love is the Lord's substance and wisdom is His...

son
'A son,' as in Genesis 5:28, signifies the rise of a new church. 'Son,' as in Genesis 24:3, signifies the Lord’s rationality regarding good. 'A...

chaldeans
Chaldea was a land lying along the Euphrates river near its mouth, south of Babylon, part of what is now southern Iraq. It was a...

Stormy wind
'A stormy wind' and 'an overflowing shower,' as in Ezekiel 13:11-13, signify the desolation of falsity.

Wind
Because a nearer and stronger divine influx through the heavens disperses truths among the wicked, 'wind' signifies this dispersion of truth and the resulting conjunction...

came
As with common verbs in general, the meaning of “come” in the Bible is highly dependent on context – its meaning is determined largely by...

North
'North' signifies people who are in obscurity regarding truth. North,' in Isaiah 14:31, signifies hell. The North,' as in Jeremiah 3:12, signifies people who are...

great
The word "great" is used in the Bible to represent a state with a strong degree of love and affection, of the desire for good;...

cloud
In Isaiah 19:1, "Jehovah rides upon a light cloud, and comes into Egypt", signifies the visitation of the natural man from spiritual-natural Divine Truth, for...

midst
'Middle' denotes what is primary, principal, or inmost.

four
The number "four" in the Bible represents things being linked together or joined. This is partly because four is two times two, and two represents...

living
'Lives' is used in the plural, because of the will and understanding, and because these two lives make one.

living creatures
Animals in general represent our spiritual activity, the things we do on a spiritual level. This can mean forming thoughts, ideas, intellectual concepts; it can...

one
A company might have executives setting policy and strategy, engineers designing products, line workers building them, managers handling personnel and others handling various functions. They...

four wings
By the four wings, as of a fowl, on the back of the third beast, signifies confirmations of falsity.

wings
'Wings' signify spiritual truths. 'Wings,' when related to the Lord, signify the divine spiritual. In the opposite sense, 'wings' relate to falsities and rationalizations from...

feet
The foot, as in Deuteronomy 33:3, signifies an inferior principle. To set the right foot on the sea and the left on the earth, as...

calf
Calves of the lips (Hos 14:2) are confessions from the affection of truth.

brass
Brass and iron as in Isaiah 48:4 and Daniel 7:19 signify what is hard.

hands
Scientists believe that one of the most crucial developments in the evolution of humans was bipedalism – walking on two legs. That left our hands...

under
Generally speaking things that are seen as lower physically in the Bible represent things that are lower or more external spiritually. In some cases this...

turn
Swedenborg says that the Lord is the sun of heaven, and like the natural sun of our world shines on everyone, good or evil. What...

face
“The eyes are the windows of the soul.” That’s a sentiment with roots somewhere in murky antiquity, but one that has become hopelessly cliché because...

lion
'A lion' signifies the good of celestial love and the truth from that good.

side
'Side' signifies good or spiritual love.

eagle
Eagle wings, referred to in Daniel 7:3, signify rational principles grounded in man's proprium.

two
The number "two" has two different meanings in the Bible. In most cases "two" indicates a joining together or unification. This is easy to see...

touched
Imagine having your mother touch your cheek. Then imagine having your spouse or someone you love romantically touch your cheek. Then imagine having a baby...

covered
The "high mountains being covered " (Gen. 7:19) signifies that all the good things of charity were extin­guished.

go
In the physical world, the places we inhabit and the distances between them are physical realities, and we have to get our physical bodies through...

burning
Just as natural fire can be both comforting in keeping you warm or scary in burning down your house, so fire in the spiritual sense...

coals
Coals of fire being scattered over the cities (Ezek. 10:1, 7), signify that men were to be left to their wild lusts, rather than they...

lightning
'Lightning' is the radiance and brilliance of God's truth.

returned
Everyone knows the phrase "the natural order of things." It means that everything is in its proper place, occupying the niche it is meant to...

earth
'Lands' of different nations are used in the Word to signify the different kinds of love prevalent in the inhabitants.

wheels
'Wheels,' as in Exodus 14:25, signify the power of proceeding and divine intelligence. 'Wheels,' as in Isaiah 5:28, signify the doctrine of natural truth. 'Wheels,'...

work
'Works,' as in Genesis 46:33, denote goods, because they are from the will, and anything from the will is either good or evil, but anything...

Beryl
'Beryl,' as in Daniel 10:6, signifies the good of charity and faith. Beryl is a sparkling precious stone.

High
'Height' signifies what is inward, and also heaven.

Full
'To satiate' relates to the extent of a person's will, for good or evil.

eyes
'Pairs of hands, eyes, etc.' relate to the will and understanding, or to good and truth. The right side to the will or good, and...

lifted
The idea of "lifting" is used in a number of different ways in the Bible. In general, it means connecting with a higher spiritual state...

stood
'To stand,' and 'come forth' as in Daniel 7:10, refers to truth. In Genesis 24:13, it signifies a state of conjunction of divine truth with...

head
The head is the part of us that is highest, which means in a representative sense that it is what is closest to the Lord....

expanse
The firmament, as in Genesis 1, signifies the internal man. The firmament of heaven is mutual love.

stretched
The hand in the Bible represents power, which is easy to understand, so to reach out or stretch out the hand means to exercise power,...

heard
'To hearken to father and mother,' as mentioned in Genesis 28:7, signifies obedience from affection. 'To hearken,' as mentioned in Genesis 30:22, signifies providence. See...

noise
'A voice crying,' and 'the voice of a cry,' are common expressions in the Word, and are applied whenever there is a noise or disturbance,...

noise of their wings
'The voice of wings,' as in Revelation 9:9, signifies rationalizations, because 'to fly' signifies perceiving and instructing.

waters
'Waters,' 'rivers,' and 'depths,' as in Psalm 78:15-16, signify truths from the Lord.

voice
In Genesis 27:22, 'voice' relates to truth, and 'hand,' to good.

almighty
'Shaddai,' as in Genesis 43:14, signifies temptation, and consolation after temptation. This is because the ancients called the one and only God by various names...

throne
'The Lord's throne' signifies, in general, the whole heaven, and specifically, the spiritual heaven, and by extension, divine truth proceeding, and so, everything of heaven...

sapphire
'Precious stones,' in application to the Word, symbolizes the Divine truth of the Word in its literal sense which the Divine truth in its spiritual...

Sapphire stone
A sapphire stone is the quality of the literal sense of the Word, when the internal sense is perceived in it.

stone
Stones in the Bible in general represent truths, or things we know concerning the Lord and what He wants from us and for us in...

day
The expression 'even to this day' or 'today' sometimes appears in the Word, as in Genesis 19:37-38, 22:14, 26:33, 32:32, 35:20, and 47:26. In a...

day of
'Day of vengeance' signifies a state of damnation.

fell
Like other common verbs, the meaning of "fall" is highly dependent on context in regular language, and is highly dependent on context in a spiritual...

spoke
Like "say," the word "speak" refers to thoughts and feelings moving from our more internal spiritual levels to our more external ones – and ultimately...

Resources for parents and teachers

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 Ezekiel's Vision
A New Church Bible story explanation for teaching Sunday school. Includes lesson materials for Primary (3-8 years), Junior (9-11 years), Intermediate (12-14 years), Senior (15-17 years) and Adults.
Teaching Support | Ages over 3

 Ezekiel’s Vision (3-5 years)
Project | Ages 4 - 6

 Ezekiel’s Vision (6-8 years)
Project | Ages 7 - 10

 Ezekiel’s Vision (9-11 years)
Project | Ages 11 - 14

 Vision of the Prophet Ezekiel
Project | Ages 7 - 17

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Apocalypse Explained # 297

Apocalypse Explained (Whitehead translation)      

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297. Verse 1. And I saw in the right hand of Him that sat upon the throne, signifies the Lord in respect to omnipotence and omniscience. This is evident from the signification of "right hand," as being, in reference to the Lord, omnipotence and also omniscience (of which presently); also from the signification of "Him that sat upon the throne," as being the Lord in respect to Divine good in heaven; for in general "throne" signifies heaven, in particular the spiritual heaven, and abstractly Divine truth proceeding, from which heaven is, and by which judgment is effected (see above, n. 253. By "Him that sat upon the throne," and also by "the Lamb," that took the book from Him that sat upon the throne, the Lord is meant, because by "Him that sat upon the throne" the Lord in respect to Divine good is meant, and by "the Lamb" the Lord in respect to Divine truth. There are two things that proceed from the Lord as the sun of heaven, namely, Divine good and Divine truth. Divine good from the Lord is called "the Father in the heavens," and is here meant by "Him that sat upon the throne;" and Divine truth from the Lord is called "the Son of man," but here "the Lamb." And because Divine good judges no one, but Divine truth judges, therefore it is here said that "the Lamb took the book from Him that sat upon the throne." That Divine good judges no one, but Divine truth judges, is meant by the Lord's words in John:

The Father doth not judge anyone, but hath given all judgment unto the Son; because He is the Son of man (John 5:22, 27).

"Father" means the Lord in respect to Divine good; "the Son of man," the Lord in respect to Divine truth. Divine good "doth not judge anyone," because it explores no one; but Divine truth judges, for it explores everyone. Yet it should be known, that neither does the Lord Himself judge anyone from the Divine truth that proceeds from Him, for this is so united to Divine good that they are one; but the man-spirit judges himself; for it is the Divine truth received by himself that judges him; but because the appearance is that the Lord judges, therefore it is said in the Word that all are judged by the Lord. This the Lord also teaches in John:

Jesus said, If any man hear My words and yet believe not, I judge him not; for I have not come to judge the world but to save the world. He that rejecteth Me and receiveth not My words hath one that judgeth him; the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day (John 12:47-48).

(Odkazy: Revelation 5:1; The Apocalypse Explained 253)


[2] For in respect to judgment, the case is this: The Lord is present with all, and from Divine Love He wills to save all, and He turns and leads all towards Himself. Those who are in good and in truths therefrom follow, for they apply themselves, but those who are in evil and in falsities therefrom do not follow, but turn backwards from the Lord, and to turn themselves backwards from the Lord is to turn from heaven to hell; for every man-spirit is either his own good and the truth therefrom, or his own evil and the falsity therefrom. He who is a good and the truth therefrom permits himself to be led by the Lord; but he who is an evil and the falsity therefrom does not permit himself to be led; he resists with all his strength and endeavor, for his will is toward his own love; for this love is his breath and life; therefore his desire is toward those who are in a like love of evil. From this it can be seen that the Lord does not judge anyone, but that Divine truth received judges to heaven those who have received Divine truth in the heart, that is, in love; and it judges to hell those who have not received Divine truth in the heart, and who have denied it. Thence it is clear what is meant by the Lord's saying that "all judgment is given to the Son, because He is the Son of man," and elsewhere, that "He came not to judge the world but to save the world," and that the Word which He has spoken is to judge man. "

[3] These, however, are truths that do not fall into man's self-intelligence, for they are among the arcana of the wisdom of angels. (But the matter is somewhat elucidated in the work on Heaven and Hell 545-551, under the heading, The Lord casts no one into Hell, but the Spirit casts Himself Thither.) That it is the Lord who is meant by "Him that sat upon the throne," and not another whom some distinguish from the Lord and call "God the Father," can be seen by anyone from this, that the Divine that the Lord called "Father" was no other than His own Divine; for this took on the Human; consequently it was the Father of the Human; and that this Divine is infinite, eternal, uncreate, omnipotent, God, Lord, and in no way differing from the Divine Itself that some distinguish from Him and call the Father, can be seen from the received faith called Athanasian, where it is also said:

That no one of them is greatest or least, and no one of them first or last, but they are altogether equal; and that as is one, so is the other, infinite, eternal, uncreate, omnipotent, God, Lord; and yet there are not three infinites, but one; not three eternals, but one; not three uncreates, but one; not three omnipotents, but one; not three Gods and Lords, but one.

These things have been said that it may be known that by "Him that sat upon the throne" and "the Lamb," also in what follows by "God" and "the Lamb," not two, distinct from each other, are meant; but that by the one, Divine good is meant, and by the other, Divine truth in heaven, both proceeding from the Lord. That the Lord is meant by "Him that sat upon the throne," is clear also from the particulars of chapter 4 preceding, where the throne and One sitting thereon are treated of (which may be seen explained, n. 258-295); and still further in Matthew:

When the Son of man shall come in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then shall He sit upon the throne of His glory (Matthew 25:31; 19:28-29).

Also in Ezekiel:

Above the expanse that was over the head of the cherubim was as it were the appearance of a sapphire stone, the likeness of a throne; and upon the likeness of the throne a likeness as the appearance of a man sitting upon it (Ezekiel 1:26; 10:1).

And in Isaiah:

I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and His train filling the temple (Isaiah 6:1).

(Odkazy: The Apocalypse Explained 258-295)


[4] Since by "throne" heaven is signified, and by "Him that sat upon the throne" the Lord in respect to His Divine in heaven, it is said above, in chapter 3:

He that overcometh, I will give to him to sit with Me on My throne (Revelation 3:21);

signifying that he shall be in heaven where the Lord is (see above, n. 253; and therefore in what follows in this chapter it is said:

I saw, and behold in the midst of the throne a Lamb standing (Revelation 3:6);

and in chapter 22:

He showed me a river of water of life, going forth out of the throne of God and of the Lamb (Revelation 22:1).

"The throne of God and of the Lamb" means heaven and the Lord there in respect to Divine good and as to Divine truth; "God" meaning the Lord in respect to Divine good; and "the Lamb," the Lord in respect to Divine truth. A distinction is here made between the two, because there are those that receive the one more than the other. Those that receive Divine truth in good are saved; but those that receive Divine truth (which is the Word) not in good are not saved, since all Divine truth is in good and not elsewhere; consequently those that do not receive it in good reject it and deny it, if not openly yet tacitly, and if not with the mouth yet with the heart; for the heart of such is evil, and evil rejects. To receive Divine truth in good is to receive it in the good of charity; for those who are in that good receive.

(Odkazy: Isaiah 3:21; Revelation 5:6, 22:1-2; The Apocalypse Explained 253)

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From Swedenborg's Works

References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 296, 303, 315, 319, 327, 343, 412, 430, 460, 479, 482, 630, 687, 850, 851, 858, 865, 936, 966

Other New Christian Commentary

Thanks to the Swedenborg Foundation for their permission to use this translation.


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