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Sunday School Insights: The Flaming Sword Guarding Eden

Posted by lehunt on October 11, 2014

Gustave Doré - Adam and Eve Driven out of Eden //


Gustave Doré

I have often wondered about the sword of flame that flashes back and forth to guard the way back into Eden.  It has puzzled me that there are at least two cherubim (since cherub is the singular form) but only one sword.  Which one wields the sword?  Do they share?  Then I noticed this line (the bolded one) in Ezekiel’s vision as we were studying cherubim in our Sunday evening Bible class.

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. (Ezekiel 1:10-14)


These creatures are cherubim.  Perhaps the sword guarding the way back to Genesis is actually fire flashing between the cherubim.


Ezekiel's Vision // From “L’Histoire du Vieux et du Nouveau Testament”, Nicolas Fontaine (author). Call Number at Pitts Theology Library: 1670Font.


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