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Geneva Study Notes
Ezekiel Chapter 1

Ezekiel 1:1
1:1 Now it came to pass in the {a} thirtieth year, in the fourth
    [month], in the fifth [day] of the month, as I [was] among
    the captives by the river of {b} Chebar, [that] the heavens
    were opened, and I saw visions of {c} God.

 The Argument - After Jehoiachin by the counsel of Jeremiah and
    Ezekiel had yielded himself to Nebuchadnezzar, and so went
    into captivity with his mother and various of his princes
    and of the people, some began to repent and murmur that they
    had obeyed the prophet's counsel, as though the things which
    they had prophesied would not come to pass, and therefore
    their estate would still be miserable under the Chaldeans.
    By reason of which he confirms his former prophecies,
    declaring by new visions and revelations shown to him, that
    the city would most certainly be destroyed, and the people
    grievously tormented by God's plagues, in so much that they
    who remained would be brought into cruel bondage. Lest the
    godly despair in these great troubles, he assures them that
    God will deliver his church at his appointed time and also
    destroy their enemies, who either afflicted them, or
    rejoiced in their miseries. The effect of the one and the
    other would be chiefly performed under Christ, of whom in
    this book are many notable promises, and in whom the glory
    of the new temple would perfectly be restored. He prophesied
    these things in Chaldea, at the same time that Jeremiah
    prophesied in Judah, and there began in the fifth year of
    Jehoiachin's captivity.

    (a) After that the book of the Law as found, which was the
        eighteenth year of the reign of Josiah, so that
        twenty-five years after this book was found, Jeconiah
        was led away captive with Ezekiel and many of the
        people, who the first year later saw these visions.
    (b) Which was a part of Euphrates so called.
    (c) That is, notable and excellent visions, so that it might
        be known, it was no natural dream but came from God.

Ezekiel 1:3
1:3 The word of the LORD came expressly to Ezekiel the priest,
    the son of Buzi, in the land of the Chaldeans by the river
    Chebar; and the {d} hand of the LORD was there upon him.

    (d) That is, the spirit of prophecy, as in
        Ezekiel 3:22,37:1.

Ezekiel 1:4
1:4 And I looked, and, behold, a {e} whirlwind came out of the
    north, a great cloud, and a fire infolding itself, and a
    brightness [was] about it, and from the midst of it as the
    colour of amber, from the midst of the fire.

    (e) By this diversity of words he signifies the fearful
        judgment of God and the great afflictions that would
        come on Jerusalem.

Ezekiel 1:5
1:5 Also from the midst of it [came] the likeness of {f} four
    living beings. And this [was] their appearance; they had the
    likeness of a man.

    (f) Which were the four Cherubims that represented the glory
        of God, as in Ezekiel 11:22.

Ezekiel 1:9
1:9 Their wings [were] {g} joined one to another; they turned
    not when they went; they went every one straight forward.

    (g) The wing of the one touched the wing of the other.

Ezekiel 1:10
1:10 As for the likeness of their faces, they four had {h} the
     face of a man, and the face of a lion, on the right side:
     and they four had the face of an ox on the left side; they
     four also had the face of an eagle.

     (h) Every cherubim had four faces, the face of a man, and
         of a lion on the right side, and the face of a bullock
         and of an eagle on the left side.

Ezekiel 1:14
1:14 And the living beings ran and {i} returned as the
     appearance of a flash of lightning.

     (i) That is, when they had executed God's will: for before
         they returned not till God had changed the state of

Ezekiel 1:16
1:16 The appearance of the wheels and their work [was] like the
     colour of a {k} beryl: and they four had one likeness: and
     their appearance and their work [was] as it were a wheel in
     the middle of a wheel.

     (k) The Hebrew word is tarshish meaning that the colour was
         like the Cilician Sea, or a precious stone so called.

Ezekiel 1:24
1:24 And when they went, I heard the noise of their {l} wings,
     like the noise of great waters, as the voice of the
     Almighty, the voice of speech, as the noise of an host:
     when they stood, they {m} let down their wings.

     (l) Which declared the swiftness and the fearfulness of
         God's judgments.
     (m) Which signified that they had no power of themselves,
         but only waited to execute God's commandment.

Ezekiel 1:27
1:27 And I saw as the colour of amber, as the appearance of fire
     {n} around within it, from the appearance of his loins even
     upward, and from the appearance of his loins even downward,
     I saw as it were the appearance of fire, and it had
     brightness on all sides.

     (n) By which was signified a terrible judgment toward the

Ezekiel 1:28
1:28 As the appearance of the bow that is in the cloud in the
     day of rain, so [was] the appearance of the brightness
     around. This [was] the appearance of the likeness of the
     glory of the LORD. And when I saw [it], I fell {o} upon my
     face, and I heard a voice of one speaking.

     (o) Considering the majesty of God, and the weakness of

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