And I looked and behold a whirlwind came. Ezekiel 1:4
Almost forty years ago I had an experience with a whirlwind that changed the direction that my life was headed in. The whirlwind was the attention getter, the voice of distant church bells was the direction. Years later, after witnessing about this incident while laboring as an evangelist, I noticed a man that grew excited about my testimony. He had been under the teaching of a man by the name of William Branham and he felt that my ministry must be tied to his. I was to inform him that I loved all of God=s ministers but our common denominator is Jesus. In later years, I read the testimony of Brother Branham and realized that he had experienced a whirlwind and surely had a word for his generation. But there have been many witnesses of whirlwinds shared in the scripture. Elijah is the Bible=s first account, although the book of Job is acknowledged by most writers to be the oldest book in the Bible. And he recorded, AOut of the south cometh the whirlwind: and cold out of the north.@1 >Out of the south= in the original Hebrew means >out of the chamber= and >whirlwind= is rendered to mean >scattering wind=. Job also records the voice of God speaking to him out of the whirlwind as an answer from the Lord (see Job 38:1 and 40:6).
Elijah, whose name in the Hebrew means>God the Lord=, saw prophetically that he was to depart the physical realm at Gilgal (in Hebrew >circle= or >rolling away=).
Gilgal was a place of the circumcision of the Hebrews crossing over Jordan coming out of the wilderness, that they were born in. They were led by Joshua to this location where God removed the reproach of Egypt from them. Gilgal was also the place where the manna was to cease after the first Passover was kept in the plains of Jericho.2 Elijah traveled with Elisha from Gilgal to Bethel, the spot where God changed the name of Jacob to Israel and reaffirmed His promise that He had made to Abraham and Isaac.3
Bethel was also the location that Jacob stopped at when headed toward Haran to find his mate. Jacob lay down in that place to sleep.A And he dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven: and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it. And, behold, the Lord stood above it, and said, I am the Lord God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac: the land whereon thou liest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed.@ Jacob awaked out of his sleep, and he said, Surely the Lord is in this place; and I knew it not. Jacob called the name of that place Bethel@4 The meaning of the name >Bethel= in the Hebrew is > the house of God=.
Elijah was to walk from Bethel to Jericho, which in the Hebrew means>city of the moon=. He was to leave Jericho and walk to Jordan with Elisha (whose name in the Hebrew means >God the Savior=) who had the knowledge of Elijah=s coming departure. When they reached the Jordan, AElijah took his mantle, and wrapped it together, and smote the water, and they were divided hither and thither, so that they two went over on dry ground.@5 Elijah=s direction was toward the wilderness, having fulfilled his present walk. He had seen the whirlwind that would carry him into the throne realm of God. Knowing that he would walk forth at another day as the voice crying out Aprepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.@6 Elijah was to grant to Elisha a double portion of his spirit if he was to witness the whirlwind that was to raise him up. The chariot of fire, and horses of fire, carried Elijah into heaven. Elijah left his mantle with Elisha and Elisha smote the waters and said, AWhere is the Lord God of Elijah?@7 The waters again parted and Elisha walked over.
Elisha (>God the Savior= in the Hebrew) like Joshua (>Savior= in the Hebrew) walked across Jordan symbolic of the coming event a millennium ahead, when Jesus, the Savior, would step into the same Jordan and fulfill the prophetic with the truth. God the Savior was to roll back the spiritual Jordan allowing all that would follow Him to possess the promised land.
Isaiah saw this same whirlwind prophetically returning,AFor, behold, the Lord will come with fire, and with his chariots like a whirlwind, to render his anger with fury, and his rebuke with flames of fire. For by fire and by his sword will the Lord plead with all flesh: and the slain of the Lord shall be many.@8 The prophetic fire is already pleading with the flesh of the church to restore, and make straight the way of the Lord. We must awake to righteousness. The glory of the Lord is come. To awake is to come to the awareness that the coming of the Lord is upon us and how are we straightened till it be accomplished.
Jeremiah instructed Israel asAsaith the Lord, return unto me;@9 Alest my fury come forth like fire, and burn that none can quench it, because of the evil of your doings.@10
ABehold, he shall come up as clouds, and his chariots shall be as a whirlwind: his horses are swifter than eagles. Woe unto us! for we are spoiled. O Jerusalem, wash thine heart from wickedness, that thou mayest be saved. How long shall thy vain thoughts lodge within thee?@11
AThus saith the Lord of hosts, Hearken not unto the words of the prophets that prophesy unto you: they make you vain: they speak a vision of their own heart, and not out of the mouth of the Lord. They say still unto them that despise me, The Lord hath said, Ye shall have peace; and they say unto every one that walketh after the imagination of his own heart, No evil shall come upon you. For who hath stood in the counsel of the Lord, and hath perceived and heard his word? who hath marked his word, and heard it? Behold, a whirlwind of the Lord is gone forth in fury, even a grievous whirlwind: it shall fall grievously upon the head of the wicked. The anger of the Lord shall not return, until he have executed, and till he have performed the thoughts of his heart: in the latter days ye shall consider it perfectly.@12
God has quickened His word in these the latter days to who hath an ear to hear. So many preach and proclaim the echos from the past, not considering the things of God in the present light.ABut the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.@13 As the light of the knowledge of the Lord has increased upon the path of our walk, we should have put away the childish things. But many still toy with the word of the Lord, proclaiming the vanity of the carnal mind rather than the mind of the spirit. Doctrines of devils spew forth out of pseudo-prophets proclaiming >saith the Lord=. Behold, my fire will try their work and I will consume the hay and the stubble that they might know that I am.
Ezekiel, whose name in the Hebrew means>God is my strength=, had an encounter with the whirlwind of God as he recorded, AAnd I looked, and, behold, a whirlwind came out of the north, a great cloud, and a fire infolding itself, and a brightness was about it, and out of the midst thereof as the colour of amber, out of the midst of the fire. Also out of the midst thereof came the likeness of four living creatures. And this was their appearance; they had the likeness of a man. And every one had four faces, and every one had four wings. And their feet were straight feet; and the sole of their feet was like the sole of a calf=s foot: and they sparkled like the colour of burnished brass. And they had the hands of a man under their wings on their four sides; and they four had their faces and their wings. Their wings were joined one to another; they turned not when they went; they went every one straight forward. As for the likeness of their faces, they four had 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.@14 Ezekiel was describing the same beasts we find in the revelation, seen by John before the throne of God. AAnd the first beast was like a lion, and the second beast like a calf, and third beast had a face as a man, and the fourth beast was like a flying eagle. And the four beasts had each of them six wings about him; and they were full of eyes within: and they rest not day and night, saying, Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come.@15 This scripture (verse 8) points out the extra wings that the beasts now have as well as the eyes that are seeing within. Christ within us is the hope of glory. These beasts represent the creature that is waiting for the manifestation of the sons of God, which will usher in the rest that the beasts don=t have. They are from the realm of day and night - the earth. And they proclaim the way. Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come. They amen the shout of all creation as they represent all creation. AAnd every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever. And the four beasts said, Amen.@16 The beasts are the redeemed by the blood of the Lamb, out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation. They possess the harps and the golden vials of incense which are the prayers of the saints.
If you look with the spiritual eye, you will see the cloud of the faithful witnesses that are the source of the whirlwind. The natural eye of the disciples beheld a cloud that received Jesus out of their sight. A spiritual eye would have seen the whirlwind and the chariot of fire!
He who hath ears to hear let him hear.
1 Job 37:9
2 Joshua 5:12
3 Genesis 35:11-15
4 Genesis 28:11-19
5 II Kings 2:8
6 Matthew 3:3
7 II Kings 2:14
8 Isaiah 66:15-16
9 Jeremiah 4:1
10 Jeremiah 4:4
11 Jeremiah 4:13-14
12 Jeremiah 23:16-20
13 Proverbs 4;18
14 Ezekiel 1:4-10
15 Revelation 4:7-8
16 Revelation 5:13-14