description, but we will take this when we come to it. It is

surprising that Ezekiel has organized his material so well. It reads

like a scientific report. If he had headed the section that we just

covered, "Description," we would not have been too surprised to find

the following section headed, "Action":

_15. Now as I beheld the living creatures, behold one wheel upon the

earth by the living creatures, with his four faces._

If we read Ezekiel correctly and the creatures did have helicopter

attachments on their backs, we can assume that one of them now

started his helicopter, which would appear as a "wheel" to Ezekiel,

and probably surprised him greatly.

_16. The appearance of the wheels and their work was like unto the

colour of Beryl: and they four had one likeness: and their appearance

and their work was as it were a wheel in the middle of a wheel._

Here we must digress in order to put ourselves into the life and time

of this man because he has mentioned the wheel. A wheel did not have

quite the same meaning for him as it does for you and I, living in a

mechanical age. The wheel in 600 B.C. in the area around the eastern

end of the Mediterranean, the most civilized part of the world at that

time, had only a few very limited uses.

One use, old even in Ezekiel's time was the potter's wheel; a simple

platform mounted on crude vertical bearings so that it could be turned

with one hand while the clay was worked with the other. From this the

grindstone and the lapidary wheel developed for working metal and

stone. These early machines probably employed some form of foot

treadle but even these could not turn the wheel very fast. If the

stone had a large enough diameter, it was possible to get the speed at

the outer edge high enough to produce sparks when grinding hard

material. The "work" took place at some distance from the axis,

usually at the edge of the stone.

The wheel we usually associate with ancient times is the cart wheel.

In its earliest form it was a solid wheel, like those still in use in

primitive sections of Mexico. Even with the cart wheel, ancient man

would associate the edge of the wheel with the "work" of the wheel.

This was the part that left a track in the mud and dust, crushed an

occasional rock and fractured an occasional toe.

In order to increase the efficiency of military chariots it was

necessary to build a wheel that was lighter, yet just as strong as the

solid model. This was first done by cutting out "lightening holes"

between the hub and rim. Pressing this invention to the ultimate

produced a spoked wheel. The Egyptians used a six-spoked chariot wheel

thousands of years before Ezekiel's time, and the Greeks and others

had four-spoke models. This was quite an invention and in addition to

its useful aspects, it produced some rather unusual, even magical

side-effects. As every child knows, if you turn your tricycle

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