BibleAsk Team

What does “a wheel in the middle of a wheel” mean?

“A Wheel in the Middle of a Wheel”

In Ezekiel’s vision, he saw:

 “15 Now as I looked at the living creatures, behold, a wheel was on the earth beside each living creature with its four faces. 16 The appearance of the wheels and their workings was like the color of beryl, and all four had the same likeness. The appearance of their workings was, as it were, a wheel in the middle of a wheel. 17 When they moved, they went toward any one of four directions; they did not turn aside when they went. 18 As for their rims, they were so high they were awesome; and their rims were full of eyes, all around the four of them.

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 wanted to go, they went, because there the spirit went; and the wheels were lifted together with them, for the spirit of the [d]living creatures was in the wheels. 21 When those went, these went; when those stood, these stood; and when those were lifted up from the earth, the wheels were lifted up together with them, for the spirit of the [e]living creatures was in the wheels.”

Ezekiel 1:15-21

The description, in Ezekiel 1:16, itself is difficult to understand since there is nothing similar to it in the Bible nor are we told what to compare these descriptions to so that we may understand them. Ezekiel the prophet described in the Hebrew language what he saw, which was so foreign to his experiences as a human being.

Some commentators see the wheels as God’s providence which produces changes in the lives of people. The believers should not fear adversity; the wheels are turning round and will raise them in due time. Whereas the proud who brag about their prosperity will be cast down by God. The angels are employed as ministers of God’s providence. The spirit of the living creatures was in the wheels; the same wisdom, power, and holiness of God, that guide and govern the angels, by them order all events in this lower world.

Each creature had four faces, denoting that the providence of God exerts itself in all directions. The disposals of Providence seem to us dark, perplexed, and unaccountable, yet all are wisely ordered for our best. The wheels went as the Spirit directed. The rings, or rims of the wheels were so vast, that when put in motion the prophet was afraid to look upon them. The consideration of the height and depth of God’s counsel should awe the believers. The motions of Providence are all directed by God’s infinite Wisdom.

In His service,
BibleAsk Team

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