Introduction ("Wheels of God's Throne ")

The Wheels of God's Throne
        (  Copyright 2009   G. Thomas Windsor  )  
( Unfolding the Mystery in  the Visions of Daniel and Ezekiel )



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Introduction


There are descriptions recorded by the prophets that provide rare glimpses into heaven itself. Ezekiel, Daniel, the apostle John, and others saw these visions. These often came in the form of prophetic dreams and spiritual revelations. Hereby what is usually unseen becomes visible, even describable in human language.  They offer a lens, as it were, to "look" into the celestial unknown. These heavenly spiritual concepts are typically described in metaphors. This imagery uses earthly things as types and shadows whereby the Lord communicates to us of heavenly things, and specifically, in this case, God's throne.

God uses his Word to describe a reality foreign to us---a place of strange angelic beings surrounding the Lord: the cherubim and seraphim enveloped by thunder, lightning, blazing lamps, and a glorious "likeness of a human form" seated upon a fiery throne, sometimes seen with wheels.     

The words used in the imagery eventually fall short and stretch us to the limits of our imagination,  invoking many questions.  

This leads us through one of the most mysterious areas of scripture. Why is the Lord enthroned between the cherubim as the Scripture states on a number of occasions?  What do the wheels signify beside the cherubim in Ezekiel's vision and beside the throne in Daniel's dream?  For ages God's throne, the cherubim, and the wheels beside them have posed a mystery. The ancient Hebrews prohibited its discussion in public and its teaching was restricted to a very few initiates. The early and medieval Church seem to have gone in the other direction and produced fanciful embellishments and excessive allegorizing on the subject.

An added difficulty regarding this topic is that there have been many outright erroneous views of the heavenly realm propagated.  For instance, the word "cherub" has come to mean in people's minds adorable, harmless baby-like angels. The truth is, the Bible portrays it very differently as we shall see. Upon reading the title of this book, many may react in puzzlement.  Many in our day have never heard of these concepts or what they mean. (Aside from perhaps those who pursue angelology, or Kabbalah mysticism;  and that's not what this writing is about.) The subject is usually delegated as one of those subjects in the Bible that many believers think is not important because it does not seem relevant to the New Testament. However, consider this: When Christ proclaimed his final claim of Deity to an unbelieving generation, He said:  " I am,... and you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One   and coming on the  clouds of heaven" (Mark 14:62).  He was referencing Daniel's vision and that throne was a throne with fiery wheels (Dan. 7:9,13)

There is much discussion and fictional propaganda in our time related to Bible codes, mysteries, etc. The subject of this writing comprises, I believe, one of the genuine biblical mysteries, but it will not be treated in a reckless or sensationalistic manner. Regarding the wheels, there has been much curiosity and oft-repeated interpretations  (i.e. UFOs/aliens, the planetary orbits, God's providence, sovereignty, etc.) However, rarely is solid evidence from the Scripture offered as proof or a method shown as to how the conclusions were formed.  Many commentators are simply quoting past speculators or theologians. This writing may not necessarily be easy reading as it references some of the more difficult passages in Scripture. However, these are some of the very ones that speak of His mysterious, visible throne. The greatest challenge is the attempt to make all of this consistently sensible, because the visions of the throne by the prophets occurred at various times, in varied contexts, and were noted by various authors.      
           
 This writing is limited in its scope. For example, I do not seek to pontificate upon issues of eschatology in Daniel 7 or historical background from Ezekiel. (There is already much written on these subjects). This writing is focused on possible meanings in the metaphoric descriptions of the wheels. I am using other references in the Bible to assist in the interpretation, and there's far less written on this subject. I believe it is important to gain a macro-view (the whole counsel of the Word) involving dozens of passages that relate, rather than the typical micro-view involving only Ezekiel.  The micro-view has limited what can be gleaned about the "wheels."  I don't believe that we should spend our time in idle speculation. This only serves to muddy the waters in our quest for truth.  

I trust that the arguments set forth here will begin to show the way through which we can gain an assured understanding. The finest interpretation always includes comparing Scripture with Scripture. Though this book specifically addresses the wheels in detail, I am seeking to present a broader message. I don't claim it is the complete or last word by any means, but it reveals what I believe are some sure foundations of understanding regarding the "wheels." The theological model presented here, I believe, is somewhat unique.  (This author has tried to find other similar writings and is not aware of any parallel conclusions either presently or historically.)  I also realize a higher burden of proof is expected from one who sets forth a unique interpretation or perspective. Others have found some individual pieces to the puzzle, but I believe this study provides a larger picture and seeks to bring together various ideas and to integrate them.

This writing may sound redundant at times, but that is necessary to show the weight of the foundational points leading to the final conclusion.  Please bear with me. Hopefully this presentation will make the understanding from the passages self-evident.  I've endeavored to approach this subject with humility, recognizing that we must take into account what many devout believers have found over the centuries. As the apostle, Peter, said “some things are  difficult to understand.” I pray I'm not somehow missing the mark.  If I have truly discovered any truths that others may have overlooked, let's not make the messenger the issue.  Ultimately, what do we all have or understand that we haven't received from God?   

So, what do the wheels beside the cherubim in Ezekiel's vision and the throne in Daniel's dream really mean?  That is the focus of this book. Let’s begin our journey of discovery.  If we pursue the knowledge of God and His Word wholeheartedly, it isn't unreasonable to expect that God can reveal even mysterious truths. I hope I can translate it all into relevant words.  It is my prayer that this will help us to fix our eyes on things above, where Christ is seated, for we will all one day appear before the throne of God.


Thank  you,
G.Thomas Windsor


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