Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Affinity 6: Ezekiel's Four Faces

Ezekiel had a vision in the first chapter.  The vision was of four creatures and each creatures had four faces, “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” (Ezekiel 1:10). The appearance of the number four brings to mind the four personality types.  The fact each creature had four faces indicates perhaps each creature had the ability to think in different ways, to see the world through different views, mainly four different views. 

Have you ever noticed the old testament is split up into four sections?  There is the Torah, the first five books of the bible.  Then there are the history books.  These are followed by the Literature books: Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes and Song of Solomon. It concludes with the books of the prophets.  The New Testament is also split up into four sections: the gospels, Acts (history of the church), the Epistles and the book of Revelation (a book of prophecy, for some).  When I first thought about Ezekiel’s four faces, I thought about the four section of the Old Testament and the four sections of the New Testament.  Perhaps there is an alignment. 

I also began to wonder why God gave us these four sections in each testament.  Perhaps it was because certain sections would appeal to certain types of people.  Perhaps there were four different personalities and so, four different types of books.  When you look at the personalities, you can sort of guess at what books would appeal to what types of people:

Law, Gospels – Stabilizers

History, Acts – Analysts

Literature, Epistles – Persuaders

Prophets, Revelation – Controllers

You can think too much about these kinds of things, but it is interesting to note there are certain aspects of the four faces that may align with the sections of the Bible and personality types.  For example, the face of the man could represent intellectual thinkers like the analysts.  The face of the lion could represent the controlling personality.  The face of the ox could be the persuasive types and the eagle, who must find balance in flight could be the stabilizer. 

I like the fact all four creatures had all four faces.  It reminds me we are called to put our best face forward for any given situation.  We have the resources to be what we need to be when called to our best, however, we typically get accustomed to looking at the world in one way and therefore favor our view.  This drives our personality.