Tuesday, December 4, 2007
Ezekiel 1 - Four Creatures
We had previously discussed Ezekiel 47 and its significance in teaching about the four kingdoms (three of glory and one not of glory). This teaching of the four kingdoms is a the major theme in scriptural books that some might call “mystical” (ie Gen., Ezk., Zac., Heb., Rev., D&C 76, 88 and so on).
But you don’t even have to put a mystical spin on it, it is just plan old Plan of Salvation teachings, and in-fact that’s all true mysticism really is.
We see the same basic concepts being taught in Ezekiel chapter 1. That chapter is worth many books being written about it, but we only have a couple column inches.
In verse 4 we see the common symbol of a “whirlwind,” as in the Sefer Yetzirah it represents the commotion which is the creation, and the continuance of heaven and earth. In verse 5:
“Also out of the midst thereof came the likeness of four living creatures. And this was their appearance; they had the likeness of a man.”
In verse 10 we can see the creatures had the faces of a man, lion, ox, and an eagle.
These are the same creature that John the Revelator saw as described in Revelation 4:6. In Doctrine and Covenants 77:3A the prophet Joseph told us what the four creature represent:
“They are limited to four individual beasts, which were shown to John, to represent the glory of the classes of beings in their destined order or sphere of creation, in the enjoyment of their eternal felicity.”
Otherwise known as the degrees of glory.
Both Ezekiel and John began their revelations with a view of the Plan of Salvation, the heart of Jewish Mysticism.
On a future post I will discuss the four creatures and the “wheels” as they turn. Stay tuned.