What Can We Learn From Ezekiel?

“When the creatures stopped, they lowered their wings …”

CHAPTER 1 – SYMBOLS

During the 30th year of the Babylonian captivity of Israel, God gave the prophet Ezekiel a vision, which he describes in Ezekiel, Chapter 1. You are personally invited to dive deep with me into the powerful meaning behind some of his words, filled with intriguing symbols, revelation and ancient wisdom.

Symbol: Stormy Wind

In the midst of a stormy wind, Ezekiel saw a cloud with flashes of fire and seemingly glowing metal, surrounded by bright light.

Lessons

Sometimes, our circumstances seem like a storm with no end in sight and that all is lost, as if burned up by fire. What we don’t see is that the storm is surrounded by God’s light, for He sees all. If we look intently within, we’ll catch a glimpse of His throne in the middle of the storm.

Symbol: Four Creatures

Ezekiel saw four living creatures. Each creature had four wings, two of which were used to cover the creature, and the remaining two touched one of the other creatures.

Lessons

The fact that two of the creatures’ wings covered themselves is symbolic of us covering ourselves spiritually: by believing in God, receiving his son Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, and having an intentional relationship with Him.

The other set of wings touching another creature signifies us touching other people, not only physically but spiritually. We are to have relationships with others and to encourage one another. God has something very specific to say on the subject: “When you do things, do not let selfishness or pride be your guide. Instead, be humble and give more honor to others than to yourselves. Do not be interested only in your own life, but be interested in the lives of others” (Philippians 2:3-4).

Symbol: Sparkling Wheels

In Ezekiel’s vision there were wheels beside each creature. In each wheel he saw a second wheel crossways inside the first. All wheels sparkled, appearing as beryl gems, and the spirit of the living creatures was in the wheels. When the creatures moved, the wheels moved; when they stopped, the wheels stopped; and when they were lifted up, the wheels were lifted up!

Lessons

I believe these creatures were following in whatever direction their spirit heard, and wherever they went, their spirit went. Likewise, we also should follow wherever God leads us. We are body, soul and spirit, and God’s Holy Spirit speaks to us through our spirit. When He says “jump,” we need to say, “How high?!” The benefits are plenty when we tune our spirit to God’s Spirit — and then follow where He leads.

You will notice in Ezekiel’s vision that the wheels were beside, not attached, to the creatures. They were high, frightening and sparkled like beryl, a gem that forms many of the precious gemstones we know. In other words, the wheels commanded attention. These characteristics remind me of someone I know: He has promised to never leave nor forsake us; He is definitely ‘high’ in every way; reverently speaking, He is ‘frightening’; and He “sees everything you do,” and “watches where you go” (Proverbs 5:21).

Symbol: Roaring Seas

The wings of the creatures had a sound as a roaring sea and was compared to an army, as well as the voice of God. I believe this represents the collective praise of the people of God. He is a God worthy of worship and praise 24 hours a day, not only with our lips, but in everything we do. Imagine if every child of God around this world praised Him at the same time … can you hear a sound, both pleasant and powerful, like the roaring waves of the sea?

Lessons

When the creatures stopped, they lowered their wings. Why? I believe they needed to quiet their sound in order to hear clearly from the One who sits on the throne. While praise to God should always be on our lips (Psalm 34:1) — audibly or in spirit — there are also times when we should stop, become quiet … and listen.

Symbol: The Throne

Ezekiel ends this first chapter by describing a throne that looked like sapphire, the stone associated with wisdom, royalty, prophecy and divine favor. Upon the throne sat a figure that appeared human, glowing like metal on top and fire on the bottom. Furthermore, a bright light surrounded the throne and reminded him of a rainbow on a rainy day.

Lessons

Details often reveal keys that open the doors we need to walk through. Ezekiel obviously paid attention to the details. This simple practice ensures we understand the messages we are given that set us on the right path, less we miss them altogether, travel down the wrong path and waste precious time in our lives.

The splendor of the throne compelled Ezekiel to bow face down on the ground, since, for him, it represented the glory of God. And then he heard God’s voice speaking. We can see the glory of God every day of our lives if we are humble enough to look. He created everything, and He is everywhere. If we search for Him, He is easily found. Selah.

________

Question for You

Do any of these symbols in Ezekiel’s vision stand out to you? I’d love to read your thoughts in the comments. Grace & peace.

Listen: A Lion, A Girl & Oppression

” … all the people looked disheveled and/or sad, oppressed. So, I walked in and asked what happened to the place. No one gave me an answer …”

A Dream, A Prophetic Interpretation and a Word

The Dream

Scene 1 – Sudden Darkness

I was walking down a road near where I grew up in Tennessee. Except it was now a dirt road, with very light dirt. I was going to visit the area where I was raised. I don’t remember if in the dream my mom still lived there or not. As I was walking down the street, which is pretty barren on both sides for a long stretch—no homes, only corn fields, as it is in the country—all of a sudden there was a boom sound and everything went completely black, no lights anywhere. Before there were street lights and it was about dusk. After the blackout the only light was the moonlight. And that was really dim. It felt as if the entire geographical region of Tennessee and beyond, maybe the world, was suddenly dark. I speeded up walking to get to the neighborhood quicker, where I figured they were other people and I would be safe.

Scene 2 – A Lion and a Little Girl

No cars came by, but I did pass a few people walking briskly on the other side in the opposite direction. So this one lady passed by; we didn’t speak and then I noticed a little girl following her. The lady was walking very fast and seemed completely focused where she was going, not glancing over at me or even looking back to check on the child. I believe she was Caucasian or maybe Hispanic. I know her skin color was pretty light. After passing me, all of a sudden, the little girl turned back and started following me. I urged her to go and catch up with her mother. She tried to do so but her mother had gone so far and she really couldn’t see her. The next thing I know the little girl was stuck in the ditch and crying out for help. She was literally hanging on something by her dress, head downwards into the ditch. I started walking over to help her, and before I could reach the ditch, I noticed what looked like a lion slowly going down toward her. It seemed young but large enough to do damage to any human. I froze and was really scared. I turned back because I reasoned that both of us would be killed by the lion. So in fear I kept going. I heard the little girl scream, and then I didn’t hear her anymore. I felt extremely bad. I kept going in the direction of the community. At that point I realized that I had somehow veered off the actual road and was about to walk straight into a swamp. So I doubled back and got back on the road. I was worried that I had to go back in the direction of the lion, thinking surely, he would get me too. But he was nowhere in sight, so once I found the road I headed back toward the community, as fast as I could.

Scene 3 – Shantytown

When I got to where our subdivision used to be, the streets and homes that should have been there were not. Instead, it seemed to be a huge camp of people like a refugee camp of sorts, with just little small pockets or rooms, like a shantytown, set up like a maze, seemingly with no streets. Chaotic and full of people. It was very dark and depressing, and all the people looked disheveled and/or sad, oppressed. So, I walked in and asked what happened to the place. No one gave me an answer. Most of them looked rather unapproachable, and I was a bit afraid so just kept moving through the maze hoping that soon I would break free of this and find my old neighborhood as it was. I came to this one door, and as I passed I looked in and it was full of foreigners, maybe 20 people or so. They appeared to be Indian or of some Asian country, all fairly dark skinned but with straight black hair. A man who seemed to be a leader (I think he was American but not sure) made them line up and begin marching out of the room single file. They were all men and were all with such a sad countenance. I caught one’s eye and gave him a smile to encourage him. The next guy in line looked at me and said, “It’s bad. It’s really bad.” I responded, “Are they abusing you?” And he answered, “Yes.” Then I told him I would try to help. And then they kept going. I had to stop to let them pass by. I followed behind them into the next room, namely because there was nowhere else to go, and heard the leader asking the guy I had spoken to what I had said. The guy told him that I would try to help them. Then the leader was very angry, and he grabbed my hand to try to twist it to frighten me. I became bold and looked at him right in the eye, and I grabbed his hand to try to loosen it from mine and said something like, “I’m not afraid of you, let go of my hand. You’re not the boss of me.”

The Prophetic Interpretation of This Dream

Some of the children in this world are in grave danger. We, as adults, are allowing this danger. How? From neglect. Being so concerned with our own safety, our busyness, our schedules, our safety, that we’ve forgotten about the children. There are so many being abused. ‘Hanging by a thread’—and headed in the wrong direction, even the opposite one they should be going in. Once they realize they are in trouble, they cry for help, but in fear, or disinterest, many ignore their cries. And so the ‘lions’ of this world—sex traffickers, abusers, pedophiles, child soldier ‘recruiters,’ kidnappers and other evildoers—easily devour them. They become ‘out of sight, out of mind’ and I would add, ‘out of hearing range, out of thought.’ We sympathize with their issues, but how often, do we actually do anything about them?

There are also adults being abused and oppressed around the world. No one can deny this truth. There were people of all kinds of nationalities in that ‘shantytown.’ Oppression is an international issue. Many nations are in turmoil as a result. God is shaking things up, majorly. He is showing us these things in our dreams for a reason.

A Word

Now, more than ever, it is imperative that we pray! It is also necessary for us to get involved in standing up for children, rather, to their abusers. The children cannot do it themselves. The enemy is behind all evil, which is why, when we decide to fight him, it’s important that we wield a sword of great power: the word of God. Praying the word of God is powerful. And prayer changes things. This is a call to warfare prayer. And for those who are able, a call to action. For the children. And for those who are oppressed. Let’s press in to God, actually listen to Him, get insight on how we are to pray, and what we are to do.

Selah.

Just Listen

“Some don’t even try to know Me. They think it’s too difficult because they are watching others.”

Be still … 

And listen … 

And know that I am God. 

Some praise Me but they do not know Me. Some worship Me but they do not study My word. Some study My word but they do not apply it to their entire life, only some of it. Some don’t even try to know Me. They think it’s too difficult because they are watching others. Some are strong but only within, not without, so that others might see My glory shine upon them and be saved. Some witnesses are devout, but only in public. Some pray daily to me, but hardly listen.  

If we sometimes find ourselves in these words, let’s correct the course. 

Selah. 

Listen: Mountains & Hills

… many people were running into the forest, most with just the clothes on their backs …

A Dream, an Interpretation, and a Word

The Dream
Scene 1:

I was outside, very high up on a mountain with jagged edges. I could see other mountains all around me, some snow-capped. There were children playing around me, various races. They were running to and fro, chasing each other, and running  dangerously right up to the edge. It appeared as if they were running to the edge on purpose, pretending as if they were going to run off and fall, and then another kid running directly behind them would pull them back just in time. I was observing them and wondering why they were being so careless with their lives. They were laughing a lot and seemed to be having a lot of fun. They were not taking the danger seriously at all; in fact, it seemed as if they were being flippant about it.

Scene 2:

I was outside, this time on ground level. There was a hill nearby, maybe a couple hundred yards away. There were several people standing in various places on the hill. All of a sudden, it began to move as if someone were on the other side pushing it. The people began to run down the hill to get off it because it was moving. They were afraid. I began running as well with them. The only place to go was into a forest. The forest was not very thick, but many people were running into the forest, most with just the clothes on their backs, and some with a few items they had grabbed before running from wherever they came from. As we ran deeper and deeper into the forest, we ran across several areas where people had decided to just camp out where they could. I kept going until I got to an area that looked safe, a clearing of sorts. In this section, the forest floor seemed to be carpeted, with some soft material over the ground, with various pastel colors, going around trees as if perfect circles had been cut out for the trees. Several people were laying down and some were asleep. It was quiet and peaceful, and so I decided to stay there as well.

Scene 3:

I was some place inside with another female and a  guy I was dating. He seemed rather young. I was sitting across from the other two on a small couch. The scenery appeared to be a sitting area inside the lobby of a building. I believe other people were milling about around us, but not closely. Apparently, I had, had a  serious  argument with my boyfriend. He and I, as well as the other lady, had some sort of short swords in our hands. Both of them held the sword out in the center toward me. Somehow there was an agreement that if I also touched my sword in the middle with theirs, that he and I would be finished and could kill each other or fight to the death. I don’t believe I wanted to, but I think I felt forced to also put my sword out and touch his. And everyone knew what that meant. However, the next minute our swords were down, and he began walking toward me, but not in a threatening way. He came closer and closer so that his face was very close to my face, and our lips were almost touching. I stood very still and didn’t say a word. Then he puckered his lips to brush mine briefly, and I hesitated slightly but also followed suit. So, then we were OK and were no longer going to fight or kill each other.

The Symbolic Interpretation of This Dream
  1. We are ‘playing dangerously’ with the things of God. To choose Him is to choose eternal life, but not to choose Him is to choose  ultimate and final death. People are laughing at this concept, ignoring its truth, and don’t realize how dangerously close they are too losing their life, for all eternity—when they could actually save it.
  2. God gives us warnings in life. If we heed the warnings, we will arrive at a safe place in Him. Although chaos will occur around us in the world, we will have peace.
  3. There will come a time when others, including people you are close to, will be at great odds with you about God, maybe even to the point of threats against you. However, if you  remain steadfast in the ways of God, even in the midst of such turmoil, all shall be well.
A Word
Listen to what the Spirit of the Lord has spoken:

Naked you are before me. I see all. I hear your thoughts before they become words. There is no rock on earth I cannot see. No sea who’s depth I do not know. No bird flies or eats without my knowledge. Do you recognize who I am? I am your loving God—with an outstretched hand before you. Will you choose my eternal love? Or will you wait and test my wrath?

Turn Your Back

… Against systems and governments that make futile attempts to block My way …

Turn your back against the wall. And there it shall remain:

Against the hard knocks of angst for Me and My people.

Against the hardened walls to My affection and My love.

Against vileness and evil in the earth.

Against those who do harm to My people.

Against the baseless belief that some are unlovable.

Against using My daughters and sons for illegal and immoral harm and pleasure.

Against all those who scheme against Me and My people.

Against systems and governments that make futile attempts to block My way.

I am the Lord.