The prophet Ezekiel and the apostle John are the only men to have seen Yahuweh and Yahushua in heaven and to have reported back to us what they saw. Ezekiel set the scene: "The heavens (shamayim — abode of God) were opened up and I saw (ra’ah — looked at, inspected, and observed) visions (mar’ah — supernatural revelations designed to communicate visually and verbally) of God (‘elohiym).... The Word of Yahuweh was manifest, came to, and existed with (‘ehayah) Ezekiel (Yachezq’el — from chazaq, to be restored, to be strong and prevail with ‘el/God), a priest and minister (kohen) in the land of the Chaldeans (Kasdim — a synonym for Babylonia meaning astrologers, fortune-tellers, and magicians)...there the hand and power of Yahuweh became manifest (hayah)." (Ezekiel 1:1-2)
Ezekiel will describe Yahuweh’s spiritual and human forms, as well as His angelic attendants. To paint a word picture of what he observed, this Levitical priest will call upon most every radiant, light emitting, and reflecting term available to him. "I looked and behold (hinneh — calling attention to the details) a windstorm (sa’ar) of the Spirit (ruach) coming in from the north, a great cloud with fire continually taking the form of (yaqah) bright shining light with radiant splendor (nogah — enlightening like the beautiful brightness of daylight) on every side and in its midst, glowing like an alloy of gold and silver (chahmal — a shining substance like an amber stone or glowing metal) in the midst of the fire." (Ezekiel 1:3-4)
The reason this is important is to dispel two myths. First, light energy has physical properties, further confirming that Maimonides was wrong when he errantly concluded that God was incorporeal. Second, the "burning bush," the "mountain top ablaze," and the "upright pillar of fire" that Yahuweh used to manifest His presence among the Israelites wasn’t actually "fire" in the sense of plasma gas but instead, energy manifest in the visual spectrum. To our senses, observable energy takes the forms of light and heat, so "fire" was simply the most descriptive term in the Hebrew nomenclature. What the Yisra’elites saw was probably as spectacular visually as Ezekiel’s portrait: "bright shining light with radiant splendor, beautifully enlightening like daylight, glowing like gold and silver, and yet warm and pleasing like the translucent color of an amber stone." Yahuweh’s radiance is beautiful beyond words.
Ezekiel went on to describe four angelic beings, "fashioned in a likeness resembling four living beings (chayah chayah — entities who live forever, remaining alive, restoring and renewing life, nurturing and sustaining life eternally) with the appearance of human form, each having four faces and four wings." They too "gleamed (natsats — shined and sparkled beautifully) in similar fashion to highly polished bronze." (Ezekiel 1:5-6) It must have been quite a sight.
Heaven’s eyewitness tells us that the angel’s wings spread out and touched one another just as they do on the Mercy Seat of the Ark of the Covenant. This is where God’s Spirit resided, at least during this revelation. "The beings (‘iysh) walked (halak) alongside (‘eber), before (paneh) God’s (‘el) presence (paneh), walking (halak) in association with (‘aser) the glorious nature and authority (shem) of God’s (‘el) Spirit (ruach), walking (halak) without (halo’) turning aside (sabab) as they proceeded (halak)." (Ezekiel 1:12) The priest is testifying that he witnessed God’s glorious Spiritual presence.
The radiant light that emanates from the angelic beings continues to be portrayed in the words at Ezekiel’s disposal. "Their living existence appeared like burning hot coals, a spectacle or phenomenon similar to living torches or lamps existing as fire and bright, radiant light, as living lightening coming forth as flames." (Ezekiel 1:13)
Ezekiel was careful and precise in describing Yahuweh’s attendants. They are alive, have shape, but do not have souls. While he says they have wings, he does not call them angels or cherubs. He uses the term ‘ish, for "a man-like being which is extant," and chayah in parallel, meaning "a being which exists and is alive." Chayah represents Yahuweh’s wish for man: "to have life and to live forever, to remain alive." Chayah conveys a restoration and renewal of life, the nurturing of life, preserving it eternally, sparing and saving life forever."
There is actually no "c" in chayah (חָיָה). It is only added by some sources to transliterate the "khaw yaw" sound of the Hebrew vocalization. But from the perspective of the Hebrew consonants actually rendered in the text, chayah is virtually identical to hayah (הָיָה), the root and meaning of Yahuweh’s name: "I Was, I Am, and I Will Be." If you look closely, you’ll notice that the left upright of the first letter reading from right to left, touches the horizontal stroke in chayah but doesn’t in hayah.
The primary meaning of hayah (pronounced "haw yaw") is: "to be," and "to exist." Hayah can also be used to convey: "to take place, to happen, or to come to pass." In addition to forming the basis of Yahuweh’s and Yahushua’s names, hayah’s Messianic connotations include: "to come, to appear and to arise, to be manifest, instituted and established." Hayah’s redemptive qualities include: "to abide," which is to "endure, living without yielding, to bear patiently, and to accept without objection." In this regard, hayah means: "to accompany, fulfill, stand, and complete." When these qualities are added to chayah we achieve a comprehensive understanding of Yahweh’s plan of salvation leading to eternal life: "to have life and live forever, to remain alive, to be restored and renewed." It is "the nurturing of revived life, preserving and sustaining it, sparing souls and saving them so that they can live prosperously and eternally." This becomes even more evident when we see chayeh (חָיֶה) as the source of these redemptive, renewing, and life-sustaining benefits: "the vigorous, energetic, and healthy ease of childbirth." The "ease of rebirth" denotes "a state of comfort, freedom from care, pain, difficulty, embarrassment or constraint." It provides a "release from all obligations." When we rely upon Yahushua as our Savior and are born anew by way of Yahweh’s Maternal Set-Apart Spirit, we become God’s children, healthy, energetic, and vigorous, living forever as part of His family, inheriting all He has to give.
The fourteenth verse begins by saying: "Those who exist and are perpetually alive, nurturing, preserving, and sustaining life (chayah chayah) sped forth (rasa’) and returned (sub) appearing visually like the phenomenon (mar’eh) of lightening (bazaq)." (Ezekiel 1:14) From this we can reasonably assume that Yahuweh’s attendants are very much alive and are about the business of renewing and restoring life. Visually, they are as bright, warm, and energetic as lightening and appear to move just as swiftly–that is to say at the speed of light. And that is important because traveling at the speed of light would enable them to maneuver in time and at the same time, make them eternal.
Moving on, Ezekiel describes a form of locomotion that is comprised of beryl-colored wheels within wheels working together and yet not appearing to turn. And since every translator seems to have their own interpretation of the prophet’s word’s eye view, I have included most every Hebrew word he used. But fair warning: this isn’t easily discernable. Yet it’s important based upon where it leads. Being able to visualize the implement God was using, isn’t central to this discussion, but appreciating how hard Ezekiel was working to describe what he saw to us is relevant because he will soon apply the same diligence to his word picture of Yahushua.
"I saw and inspected (ra’ah) those who are alive, renewing and restoring life (chayah chayah), and behold (hineh) one wheel (‘owphan) was in the earth (‘erets) beside (‘esel) those who live eternally, nurturing life (chayah chayah): four wheels (‘owphan) visually appearing (mar’eh) to be working (ma’aseh), outwardly appearing to the eye (‘ayin) as a silicate of beryllium with prismatic colors of bluish green, yellow, and pink (tarasis), four acting as (damuwth — in the likeness of) one (‘echad), appearing to work as (mar’eh ma’aseh) broken or disengaged (ka’ah) wheels within the midst (tawek) of wheels, traversing, coming and going (halak halak) in four directions or dimensions (‘araba’ reba’) without turning (halo’ sabab) or moving (halak). The convex surface (gab — rim of a wheel, projection of a shield, base or back) was elevated and grand (gobah — tall, lofty, majestic in its spatial dimensions). Exceedingly awesome (yir’ah) projected shields (gab) and four (‘araba’) full (male’) visual sources (‘ayin — eyes, or appearing to the eye) were placed round about in a circuit (musab). Those who exist and are perpetually alive, nurturing, preserving, and sustaining life (chayah chayah) traveled with, leading and escorting (halak — coming and going with) the wheels (‘owpan), traveling with those who restore and renew life (chayah chayah), lifting (nasa’) the wheels up from the earth and raising them (nasa’)." (Ezekiel 1:15-19)
The "wheels" of this "vehicle" appear to be symbolic of the apparatus of renewal and restoration of mankind and of the Spirit’s interaction with human souls. The concept is developed further as Ezekiel turns his attention to the Spirit of God. "According to and on account of (‘al), in association with (‘aser), the name, glory and nature (shem) of the Spirit’s (ruach) coming (halak) and going (halak), Her position here and there (sham), the wheels (‘owpan) rise and are lifted up (nasa’ — are desired and exalted, accepted and forgiven) in close proximity to (‘umah — in juxtaposition with, side by side with, parallel to) the Spirit (ruach) renewing and restoring to life, nurturing and preserving life (chayah chayah) in the wheels (‘owpan)." (Ezekiel 1:20)
As a clue as to the symbolic meaning of these ‘owpan, and the Set Apart Spirit’s association with them, the term is used in conjunction with the four four-spoke wheels of brass that were placed beneath the lavers (purifying and cleansing waters) of Yahuweh’s Temple. (1 Kings 7:33) Metaphorically then, they would have exemplified our movement from sin to sanctification by way of the Spirit purifying and cleansing, Her renewing and restoring us, nurturing and preserving us, ultimately preparing us for life in God’s House.
That seems to be the message of the following verse. "Coming and going (halak halak), taking a stand (‘amad), remaining and enduring (‘amad), standing upright so as to enable others to stand (‘amad), ordaining and presenting (‘amad) forgiving and lifting up (nasa’) from the earth (‘eres), the wheels (‘owpan) lift up and bear, sustaining and supporting those (nasa’) in close proximity to (‘umah — in juxtaposition with) the Spirit (ruach) renewing and restoring life, nurturing and preserving (chayah chayah) by way of the wheels (‘owpan)." (Ezekiel 1:21-22)
What comes next may be one of Scripture’s most profound explanations of how Yahuweh can manifest Himself simultaneously as the Maternal Set-Apart Spirit and the Messianic Son, our Protector and Savior. "On (‘al) top (ro’s — the head, crucial part or source) of those who exist and are perpetually alive, nurturing and sustaining life (chayah chayah), fashioned in the likeness of (damuwth) space and matter (raqiya’ — expanse and firmament), awesomely and reverently (yare’) appearing to the eye (‘ayin) as crystal (qerach — ice) spread (natah — stretched out and extended) over (‘al — upon) the upper part (ma’al) of their heads (ro’s — their top, crucial parts or source), under the substance and expanse (raqiya’) of their wings (kanap) is the Upright One (yashar — one who stands upright, is correct and pleasing), God (‘el), female (‘isah) beloved relative (‘achowt) and male (‘ish), two (shanayim — both in combination) covering and clothing, protecting (kasha) the living human bodies (gaviyah) of mankind (‘ish). They (hem) were present in the same existence (henah — as a predictor and affirmation of an attribute and property; the logical connectiveness and simultaneousness of an essence in the same space, position, and time)." (Ezekiel 1:23)
Yahuweh is one entity, simultaneously and eternally existing as our Heavenly Father, Spiritual Mother, and Redeeming Son. Yahuweh is: One existence with two manifestations, all affirming His nature. Eternal life in the household and family of Yahweh is the result of the restoration and renewal achieved by the Spirit and the Son simultaneously manifesting God’s essence in the roles of Savior and Preserver. This passage confirms, with absolute certainty, what the many clues have suggested: Yahuweh has a paternal and maternal nature. God is both our Heavenly Father and our Spiritual Mother. Yes, God made mankind in His image: "male and female He made them."
Continuing to paint the scene, Ezekiel presents the resonant roar of people saved by the liberating wings of living waters. They are equated to the Almighty’s voice. "I heard the sound of wings, the noise of abundant, powerful, and mighty (rab) waters, and the moving (halak) voice (qowl) of the Almighty (Shaday), as the sound of the roaring loud resonance of a large group of people taking a stand (‘amad), remaining and enduring (‘amad). I Am’s (‘Ehayah) voice was thundering above matter and space (raqi’a), over the heads of those who were present, standing upright and sustaining (‘amad ‘amad) with relaxed wings (rapah kanap)." (Ezekiel 1:24-25) Don’t you wish you had been there?
Now, out of the greater dimensions of heaven, God took the form of a man appearing above a throne. "Out of (min) the higher dimensions (ma’al — greater positions or elevated orientations) of matter and space (raqi’a), above (‘al) the top (ro’s) of something resembling (damut) a throne (kise’ — seat of honor) of stone (‘eben), blue sapphire and lapis lazuli precious stones (cappiyr ‘eben), appearing visually (mar’eh) in the likeness of (demut) a seat of honor, dignity, authority, and power (kise’) originating from and as part of (min) the greater dimensions (ma’al) was the likeness (demut) and appearance (mar’eh) of a man (‘adam)." (Ezekiel 1:26) The prophet was looking up at Yahushua–God manifest in human form.
"I noticed (ra’ah — intently observed and discerned) the appearance (mar’eh) of a physical body (matnayim — an entire person used in the purely physical and anatomical sense, referring to the middle of the body: waist, back, side, and loins), the upper part (ma’al) visually appearing (mar’eh) to be glowing metal (hasamal — a shining substance with the color of an illuminated amber stone or glowing bronze electrum, the natural pale yellow of gold and silver) appearing like (mar’eh) fire (‘es) all around and about (musab) His dwelling (bayith/beiyth — house), and from the appearance (mar’eh) of His body (matnayim) downwards I saw something resembling fire radiating light majestically (nogah — shining brightly) all around, also the appearance (mar’eh) of a rainbow and clouds on a rainy day. Thus was the visual appearance surrounding the brilliant radiance and majestic light (nogah). He (hu’) appeared in the image of the glorious presence and manifestation of power (kabowd — the person) of Yahuweh." (Ezekiel 1:27) Despite what the most revered rabbis would have Jews believe, God can, has, and will manifest Himself in a physical body.
The Medieval Maimonides the Rambam based the third plank of the religion of Judaism on the false premise that God could not become a man and take on human form. Oh the souls that have been lost based upon his preposterous lie. This arrogant rabbi would go on to create 613 stifling laws called mitzvot out of the prescriptions contained in the Torah, in essence turning a liberating and loving relationship with the living God into the repressive and ritual laden religion of men.
But Yahuweh was not taken by surprise. He knew that men would value their words more than His. Thankfully, Ezekiel wasn’t one of them. "When I saw Him I fell prostrate (naphal) upon my face (paneh) and heard the thunderous voice (qowl) saying (dabar), ‘Son of ‘Adam, stand upright and remain on your feet. Speak with Me and I will speak with you.’ Then the Spirit entered me. She caused me to stand upon my feet, listening and speaking. He said, ‘Son of ‘Adam, I Am sending you to the sons of Yisra’el, a rebellious and disobedient (marad) nation (gowy — [Having imitated their religious practices, Yisra’el had become one with the heathens]) who relationally (‘asher) have rebelled against Me, and their fathers have transgressed against Me to this very day. I Am sending you to hard headed, cruel, and difficult, stiff necked (qasheh paneh), obstinate and stubborn (hazaq) children who boast and act arrogantly. Thus says the Father and Upright Pillar and Foundation (‘dn — most likely ‘edon, the foundation of the Tabernacle and the Upright One), Yahuweh. Whether they listen or revolt in bitter opposition (mariy) against My house, family, and home (beiyth/bayit), know (yada’) a prophet will exist (‘ehayah — I Was, I Am, and I Will be) in their midst." (Ezekiel 1:28-2:5) God was obviously aware of the rabbis who would mislead His people and He clearly wasn’t pleased.
The Yahudim were given the best job in the world. They were offered the inheritance of Yahuweh, eternal life in the family of God. And yet they chose to rely upon the lifeless, arrogant, errant, and rebellious notions of men. Two thousand seven hundred years of hell on earth has been their reward. But even that would be unsatisfactory for those who did the misleading. For corrupting Yahweh’s chosen people rabbis like Maimonides the Rambam will endure the greater and perpetual condemnation. Had he not been so arrogant, obstinate and stubborn, had he paused to humbly consider what Ezekiel had seen, had he listened to what Ezekiel reported, it wouldn’t have turned out that way.
Six centuries later, the apostle John would affirm Ezekiel’s testimony, witnessing to a similar experience. He would say of heaven: "At once I was in the Spirit and behold, a throne was there in heaven, with the One sitting on the throne. He who was sitting resembled a bluish-green translucent stone and one reddish in appearance. There was a rainbow round about and circling the throne, like an emerald to the eye... Twenty-four elders sat around the throne clothed in garments of dazzling light with golden crowns on their heads. From the throne proceeded flashes of lightning and sounds of thunder. And there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne which are the seven Spirits of God. Before the throne there was as it were, a sea of glass like crystal and in the midst, surrounding the throne, living beings (zoon zoon — from zao, to live and be among the living, to be worthy of life, enduring with God)." (Revelation 4:2-6) John continued to describe what he experienced using the same word pictures Ezekiel had painted. The attendants had four faces, that of a lion, calf, man and eagle. Each possessed multiple wings and eyes.
The apostle went on to say: "Praise Yahuweh! Salvation, glory, and power belong to our God." (Revelation 19:1) "I saw the heavens opened, and behold, brilliant light (luke — dazzling white light and shining white garments of light).... His eyes are a flame of fire, and upon His head are many crowns.... He is clothed with a robe dipped in blood and His name is ‘The Word of God.’" (Revelation 19:11-13)
John would later add: "I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, ‘Behold, the Tabernacle of Yahuweh is among men, and He shall dwell among them, and they shall be His people.’" (Revelation 21:3) Speaking of the New Jerusalem, John reported: "I saw no temple in it, for Yahuweh Almighty and the Lamb are its Temple. And the city has no need of the sun or of the moon to shine upon it, for the radiant glory of God has illuminated it, and its Lamp is the Lamb. The nations shall walk by its light." (Revelation 21:22-24) "And there shall no longer be any night. They shall not have need of the light of a lamp nor the light of the sun because Yahuweh shall illuminate them. And they shall live forever, and ever." (Revelation 22:5) Times and men changed; Heaven and God did not.
One of my favorite affirmations of Yahushua’s brilliant nature is presented in Matthew and Mark. "Yahushua took Peter, James and John and brought them up to a high mountain by themselves. And He was transfigured (metamorphoo — changed into another from, transformed, altering one’s essence and appearance) in their presence. His face shined (lampo — produced and emitted light) like the sun. His garments became (ginomai — existed as) dazzling and brilliant, radiant and gleaming, white (luekos) light (phos)." (Matthew 17:1-2) The portrait is eternally consistent. God is light. Yahushua is God.
"And behold, Mosheh (Moses) and ‘El’iyah (Elijah, meaning Yah is God) appeared (horao — and could be seen with our eyes, experienced and known), talking (sullaleo — communing) with Him.... While He was still speaking, a cloud composed of light and full of brilliant illumination (nephele photeinos) threw a shadow upon (episkiazo — overshadowed) Him, and lo, a voice from the cloud said (lego — affirmed, maintained, advised, and taught) on behalf of Him (eis — in reference to Him and within Him), ‘He is My dearly loved, esteemed, and worthy (agapetos) Son, with whom I Am pleased. Listen to (akouo — hear and understand, comprehend, teach and announce the news regarding) Him.’" (Matthew 17:3-5)
The reason the "cloud of light" "overshadowed" the One whose "face shone like the sun," and whose "garments were dazzling, brilliant, radiant and gleaming light," is because even transfigured, the more energized Yahushua was still only a pale shadow of His natural and whole self–Yahuweh. Yes, light is light, and Yahushua is Yahuweh, but without the full intensity. If Yahweh didn’t ratchet His energy level down when communing with us, we mortals would be incinerated in His presence.
Yahushua said, "I Am the Light of the cosmos. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the Light of Life." (John 8:12)
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