Four Living Creatures
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Four Living Creatures (Revelation 4.6b-7)

"In the center, around the throne, were four living creatures, and they were covered with eyes, in front and in back. The first living creatures was like a lion, the second was like an ox, the third had a face like a man, the fourth was like a flying eagle." (Revelation 4.6b-7)✞

Covered with Eyes

Raiders of the Lost ArkIn the movie, "Raiders of the Lost Ark," the Ark of the Covenant also known as the "Ark of the Testimony" was discovered in Egypt. It was described as an acacia wood chest overlaid with gold. It contained the stone tablets with the Ten Commandments brought down from God by Moses at Mount Sinai as well as Aaron's rod which had budded, and a container of manna from the desert wilderness journeys. Two cherubim, which were angelic beings that attended God, were carved on the lid of the ark facing each other with their wings swept over the ark as a covering. Cherubim were often shown on Christian icons as a bull or a lion with eagle's wings and a human face, like the four living creatures. In the Genesis account, the cherubim, which is the plural of the word "cherub" in Hebrew, guarded the way to the Garden of Eden after Adam and Eve had been expelled. The cherubim are protectors close to God and defend the throne. The four living creatures are possibly the same as the cherubim in Ezekiel 1.4-14. The prophet there says, "I looked, and I saw a windstorm coming out of the north — an immense cloud with flashing lightning and surrounded by brilliant light. The center of the fire looked like glowing metal, and in the fire was what looked like four living creatures. In appearance their form was human, but each of them had four faces and four wings. Their legs were straight; their feet were like those of a calf and gleamed like burnished bronze. Under their wings on their four sides they had human hands. All four of them had faces and wings, and the wings of one touched the wings of another. Each one went straight ahead; they did not turn as they moved. Their faces looked like this: Each of the four had the face of a human being, and on the right side each had the face of a lion, and on the left the face of an ox; each also had the face of an eagle. Such were their faces. They each had two wings spreading out upward, each wing touching that of the creature on either side; and each had two other wings covering its body. Each one went straight ahead. Wherever the spirit would go, they would go, without turning as they went. The appearance of the living creatures was like burning coals of fire or like torches. Fire moved back and forth among the creatures; it was bright, and lightning flashed out of it. The creatures sped back and forth like flashes of lightning." Solomon's Temple, which was the first Jewish Temple built in Jerusalem, was decorated with cherubim on the walls and the heavy curtains separating the Holy of Holies from the Holy Place.✞

Four Faces

Four Living CreaturesThe living creatures are described in both Ezekiel and Revelation as having the four faces of a flying eagle, a human, a lion and an ox representing all forms of living beings and had the added feature of being covered with eyes both in the front and at back. The Greek in Revelation 4.6-8 for the "four living creatures" is "tessera zoia." Here the four living creatures were on guard in the Heavenly Courts. Our God is an all seeing God.

"Four Living Creatures"
by Ron Meacock © 2017

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