1:15 Then I looked, 1 and I saw one wheel 2 on the ground 3 beside each of the four beings. 1:16 The appearance of the wheels and their construction 4 was like gleaming jasper, 5 and all four wheels looked alike. Their structure was like a wheel within a wheel. 6 1:17 When they moved they would go in any of the four directions they faced without turning as they moved. 1:18 Their rims were high and awesome, 7 and the rims of all four wheels were full of eyes all around.
1:19 When the living beings moved, the wheels beside them moved; when the living beings rose up from the ground, the wheels rose up too. 1:20 Wherever the spirit 8 would go, they would go, 9 and the wheels would rise up beside them because the spirit 10 of the living being was in the wheel. 1:21 When the living beings moved, the wheels moved, and when they stopped moving, the wheels stopped. 11 When they rose up from the ground, the wheels rose up from the ground; the wheels rose up beside them because the spirit of the living being was in the wheel.
1:22 Over the heads of the living beings was something like a platform, 12 glittering awesomely like ice, 13 stretched out over their heads. 1:23 Under the platform their wings were stretched out, each toward the other. Each of the beings also had two wings covering 14 its body. 1:24 When they moved, I heard the sound of their wings – it was like the sound of rushing waters, or the voice of the Almighty, 15 or the tumult 16 of an army. When they stood still, they lowered their wings.
1:25 Then there was a voice from above the platform over their heads when they stood still. 17 1:26 Above the platform over their heads was something like a sapphire shaped like a throne. High above on the throne was a form that appeared to be a man. 1:27 I saw an amber glow 18 like a fire enclosed all around 19 from his waist up. From his waist down I saw something that looked like fire. There was a brilliant light around it, 1:28 like the appearance of a rainbow in the clouds after the rain. 20 This was the appearance of the surrounding brilliant light; it looked like the glory of the Lord. When I saw 21 it, I threw myself face down, and I heard a voice speaking.
1 tc The MT adds “at the living beings” which is absent from the LXX.
3 tn The Hebrew word may be translated either “earth” or “ground” in this context.
4 tc This word is omitted from the LXX.
5 tn Heb “Tarshish stone.” The meaning of this term is uncertain. The term has also been translated “topaz” (NEB); “beryl” (KJV, NASB, NRSV); or “chrysolite” (RSV, NIV).
6 tn Or “like a wheel at right angles to another wheel.” Some envision concentric wheels here, while others propose “a globe-like structure in which two wheels stand at right angles” (L. C. Allen, Ezekiel [WBC], 1:33-34). The description given in v. 17 favors the latter idea.
7 tc The MT reads וְיִרְאָה לָהֶם (vÿyir’ah lahem, “and fear belonged to them”). In a similar vision in 10:12 the wheels are described as having spokes (יִדֵיהֶם, yideyhem). That parallel would suggest יָדוֹת (yadot) here (written יָדֹת without the mater). By positing both a ד/ר (dalet/resh) confusion and a ת/ה (hey/khet) confusion the form was read as וְיָרֵה (vÿyareh) and was then misunderstood and subsequently written as וְיִרְאָה (vÿyir’ah) in the MT. The reading וְיִרְאָה does not seem to fit the context well, though in English it can be made to sound as if it does. See W. H. Brownlee, Ezekiel 1-19 (WBC), 8-9. The LXX reads καὶ εἶδον αὐτά (kai eidon auta, “and I saw”), which assumes וָאֵרֶא (va’ere’). The existing consonants of the MT may also be read as “it was visible to them.”
8 tn Or “wind”; the same Hebrew word can be translated as either “wind” or “spirit” depending on the context.
9 tc The MT adds the additional phrase “the spirit would go,” which seems unduly redundant here and may be dittographic.
10 tn Or “wind.” The Hebrew is difficult since the text presents four creatures and then talks about “the spirit” (singular) of “the living being” (singular). According to M. Greenberg (Ezekiel [AB], 1:45) the Targum interprets this as “will.” Greenberg views this as the spirit of the one enthroned above the creatures, but one would not expect the article when the one enthroned has not yet been introduced.
11 tc The LXX reads “when it went, they went; when it stood, they stood.”
tn Heb “when they went, they went; when they stood, they stood.”
12 tn Or “like a dome” (NCV, NRSV, TEV).
13 tn Or “like crystal” (NRSV, NLT).
14 tc Heb “each had two wings covering and each had two wings covering,” a case of dittography. On the analogy of v. 11 and the support of the LXX, which reads the same for v. 11 and this verse, one should perhaps read “each had two wings touching another being and each had two wings covering.”
15 tn Heb “Shaddai” (probably meaning “one of the mountain”), a title that depicts God as the sovereign ruler of the world who dispenses justice. The Old Greek translation omitted the phrase “voice of the Almighty.”
17 tc The MT continues “when they stood still they lowered their wings,” an apparent dittography from the end of v. 24. The LXX commits haplography by homoioteleuton, leaving out vv. 25b and 26a by skipping from רֹאשָׁם (rosham) in v. 25 to רֹאשָׁם in v. 26.
19 tc The LXX lacks this phrase. Its absence from the LXX may be explained as a case of haplography resulting from homoioteleuton, skipping from כְּמַרְאֵה (kÿmar’eh) to מִמַּרְאֵה (mimmar’eh). On the other hand, the LXX presents a much more balanced verse structure when it is recognized that the final words of this verse belong in the next sentence.