The Cherubims of Glory
Part 5 of 8
Pastor Gary Garner
THE TWO OLIVE CHERUBIMS
Our objective has been to discover what is meant by the fact that in Genesis
3:24, cherubims were placed in a position where they guarded or kept
the way to the tree of life. It doesn't say that the cherubims were
to keep people away from the way; they are to guard the way. But
what are cherubims? We have touched on every mention of cherubims,
up to the point where we are now ready to study the two olive cherubims
in the temple of Solomon.
The word cherubim means "blessing," and that automatically points
us to the seed of Abraham, because the seed of Abraham is called "the blessing."
God said, "I will bless you and make you a blessing." It points us
to the Melchizedek priesthood of Genesis 14, where it says that this man
with bread and wine in his hand blessed the Most High God and blessed Abraham.
That points us to individuals, to people. There is no scriptural
basis for believing that cherubims are some kind of traditional angelic
being. When we search the scriptures, it appears that they are actually
mature redeemed believers, that they symbolically point to that.
(Quick review based on titles)
Cherubims are seen first of all in Solomon's temple as being a part
of the wall at the end of the oracle of God. The Most Holy Place
in Solomon's temple was called "the oracle of God." The oracle meaning
what God is saying. That is highly significant. Peter said,
"If any man speak, let him speak as of the oracles of God." Those
cherubims that are part of the wall at the back of the Most Holy Place
in Solomon's temple point to a word from the Lord, point to what God is
saying. They overshadow the mercy seat.
I Chronicles 28:11,12 Then David gave to Solomon
his son the pattern of the porch, and of the houses thereof, and of the
treasuries thereof, and of the upper chambers thereof, and of the inner
parlours thereof, and of the place of the mercy seat, and the pattern of
all that he had by the spirit, of the courts of the house of the Lord,
and of all the chamber round about, of the treasuries of the house of God,
and of the treasuries of the dedicated things…
How did David get the pattern? He got it by the Spirit. This
is just like Moses's Tabernacle. God gave Moses the pattern for His
own house, and God gave David the pattern for the temple of Solomon.
David here is giving the pattern to his son Solomon.
It is one thing to get a picture maybe of Elijah and Elisha going across
the Jordan River together, and then portraying that as a type and a shadow
of our union with Christ and the revelation of His death, etc. That fits
good, and it is legitimate. But when we are studying a pattern that
God has given to Moses or to David, a pattern of heavenly things here on
earth, then that makes me even more hungry to get it right, because this
is God's pattern. If the temple of Solomon is a pattern of the thing
that is to become permanent in the earth, speaking of the church, the difference
is that Solomon's temple was permanent. It was made of stone.
It was not a tent; it was not meant to be moved. It points to the
next age that we are going to live in; it points to this age really that
we have begun.
One of the best ways to look at these three dwelling places of God (Moses'
tabernacle, David's tabernacle, and Solomon's temple) is to look at Moses's
tabernacle as the one that points to the law and the children of God in
the wilderness. That tabernacle and that family back there is called
in Acts chapter seven "the church in the wilderness." That is pictured
by that tent that moved from place to place all the way through the wilderness.
Moses' tabernacle pictured the Old Testament. But it was movable;
something was moving. Something was going on. There was a progression
When you get to David's tabernacle, it is a beautiful picture of the
church age. In the church age, there is no veil. How many people
can come to the Lord today? Everybody. You don't have be of
a natural tribe. There was no veil in David's tabernacle. In
fact in Acts 15 when Gentiles began to be incorporated into the church,
then they said, "Why, this is nothing short of that prophecy that Amos
gave us about the restoration of David's tabernacle, which was the beginning
of the church. So we've got Old Testament, a tent, a tabernacle in
the wilderness, pictured in the Old Testament; we've got David's tabernacle
pictures the church; but those are both tents; those are both temporary.
There is another one: Solomon's temple. At the time that Solomon ruled
and reigned, there was no greater kingdom on the earth. There was
no greater king on the earth; there was no greater temple on the earth.
This was and always has been the height of any temple that has ever been
built. It points to this great expression of the body of Christ that
we are beginning to see. It is not going to be removed. There
is a kingdom. Jesus is a king whose government is continually increasing;
it never will stop. But this temple of Solomon that we are about
to study pictures a permanent structure. First Peter 2:5 calls us
"lively stones, built up a spiritual house." This is the house that
we are becoming that is made of stone; it is not a moveable tent.
There are lots of ways to teach that. It is not a tent that will
be destroyed. It is a people that will continue, a permanent structure,
at the height of what is known as the kingdom. We are coming to that.
Hebrews 9:22,23 And almost all things are
by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission.
It was therefore necessary that the patterns of things in the heavens should
be purified with these; but the heavenly things themselves with better
sacrifices than these.
What is He referring to when he says "the patterns of things in the heavens?"
One of the things that he is talking about is the Temple of Solomon.
Remember that by the Spirit, David got a pattern of the Tabernacle.
What was that a pattern of? The pattern is not the real. But
you have a pattern, and it is of the real when put together properly.
This temple of Solomon was not what was heavenly, but it was a pattern
of that which was heavenly. It gives us a picture of it. What
are the heavenly things?
Hebrews 8:1,2 Now of the things which we
have spoken this is the sum: We have such an high priest, who is set on
the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens; a minister
of the sanctuary, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and
This is speaking of Jesus. What is the tabernacle? What is the dwelling
place? What is the temple of God which the Lord pitched and not man?
It is the church. So the heavenly things, that Solomon's temple is
a pattern of, are not some heavenly thing off on a planet a billion miles
away, but the heavenly house of God that we are. We are looking at
a pattern here.
Hebrews 9:24 For Christ is not entered
into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true;
but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us.
What has He entered into? The holy places which are not made with
hands, which are made with the redemptive work, which is you! The
holy place in you is your spirit. Christ has entered into there.
Your spirit. With that in mind, let's go to First Chronicles 28 and
show you all of these various places that God gave David patterns of various
things in Solomon's temple, but let's just look at verse eighteen.
First Chronicles 28:18 And for the altar
of incense refined gold by weight; and gold for the pattern of the chariot
of the cherubims, that spread out their wings, and covered the ark of the
covenant of the Lord.
The gold cherubims, the chariot of cherubims, were made by pattern.
I'm not going to do an extensive study tonight on this; I'm just going
to quickly run through the three places where these two olive cherubims
are mentioned. The reason that I am not going to do a real in-depth
teaching tonight is because when we get to Ezekiel chapter one, these things
become more detailed as you go on through. That's how the Bible is;
it starts out real basic. The revelation of the cherubims profoundly
says … the first thing it says … they're in the mercy seat. That
is a profound basic foundation. Everything you learn about them is
in reference to that being in Christ. They are of Christ, and it
goes on. The further we go on, when we get to Ezekiel chapter one,
we are going to look at over a dozen characteristics of cherubims.
We are going to find out that they get along with one another. We
are going to find out that they are people of integrity. We are going
to find out that their walk is straight. We are going to find out
that they go wherever the Spirit goes. It's just awesome.
First Kings 6: 23 And within the oracle
he made two cherubims of olive tree, each ten cubits high.
Within what God is saying, within the place where God speaks, he made two
cherubims of olive tree. Two is the number of witness. You
can carry these two olive cherubims and identify them with the two witnesses
in the Book of Revelation, chapter eleven. You can identify them
in Zechariah chapter four with these two olive trees that gave oil to this
massive golden candlestick.
It is the same principle here. Compare it to the king/priest ministry
after the order of Melchizedek, which is Jesus, who is a king and a priest.
But it says two, and it is the number of witness.
Olive tree was the tree from which the anointing oil was produced.
We can see that if cherubims represent individuals in union with Christ,
then what we have here is anointed people, a kind of anointing. Anointed
with the Holy Spirit. Acts 10:38 says how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth
with the Holy Ghost and with power, who went about doing good and healing
all those oppressed of the devil. So here are two olive tree cherubims,
made out of the substance from which anointing comes. Made out of
the Holy Spirit's revelation and anointing us to see the person and work
of the Son. Each were ten cubits high. Ten is the number of
the law. Each had the law fulfilled in them. Romans 8:3 &
4. Each were as high as the law. Each had the law fulfilled,
not only in them, but through them. They were doers of it.
They fulfilled it in the very love that they walked in. Jesus said,
"This is what fulfills the law; it is the love of God in you."
First Kings 6:24 And five cubits was the
one wing of the cherub, and five cubits the other wing of the cherub: from
the uttermost part of the one wing unto the uttermost part of the other
were ten cubits.
Notice that there are two cherubs here, and each cherub had two wings.
One on each side, and each cherub's wings were five cubits. Five
is the number of grace; grace is always spread throughout scripture.
Grace will be the message, but remember what we taught from Romans 3 was
that grace comes through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.
It is imperative that we always connect grace with what purchased it, because
grace to most people is just unmerited favor. But somebody merited
it! Somebody paid for the grace that you and I walk in. Grace
through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus. So we can see grace.
If there are two of them and each wing is five cubits wide, that means
that the width of the two olive cherubims were twenty cubits. Twenty
is the number of atonement. We get that from Exodus 30, where when
you were twenty years of age, you had to give the silver atonement money.
They were as wide as this Most Holy Place. The Most Holy Place was
twenty by twenty, and the wing touched one side and touched the other.
They were ten cubits high. Here is a tremendous revelation: the
brazen altar outside, which represented the cross, was twenty by twenty
by ten, which means that if you took the brazen altar and pushed it all
the way through, it would fit right inside the Most Holy Place, and the
cherubims would be exactly the same size as that brazen altar. They
were crucified with Christ. If you took them outside, you could fit
them right inside. They would fit perfectly right inside that cubicle.
But Solomon's temple is not just twenty by twenty; it's twenty by twenty
by twenty, so it is twice as high as the brazen altar.
First Kings 6:25-27 And the other cherub
was ten cubits: both the cherubims were of one measure and one size.
The height of the one cherub was ten cubits, and so was it of the other
cherub. And he set the cherubims within the inner house: and they
stretched forth the wings of the cherubims, so that the wing of the one
touched the one wall, and the wing of the other cherub touched the other
wall: and their wings touched one another in the midst of the house.
We notice that they had wings. We shared with you last time that
their wings pointed to the voice. When the wings sounded, it sounded
like the voice of one. We will get into that more in Ezekiel chapter
one. The olive cherubim were part of the wall at the end. What does
the wall point to? Isaiah 60:18 says that our wall is salvation.
When all is said and done, salvation is manifested to the whole world,…
it will be what Jesus has done and what that means to us. It will
be about how we are the people who are destined to be the people who are
conformed to His dear Son, placed in that wall. At the end of the
whole message there are cherubims. In the wall at the end, and they
are just as wide as the wall.
First Kings 6:28 And he overlaid the cherubims
Divine nature was all you could see.
First Kings 6:29 And he carved all the
walls of the house round about with carved figures of cherubims and palm
trees and open flowers, within and without.
When you went into the Most Holy Place there in Solomon's temple, everywhere
that you could see, there were cherubims! On every wall. And
palm trees, which picture full stature. In Song of Solomon chapter
seven, when she grows up to maturity, the king says to her, "Thy stature
is as a palm tree." She has grown to the fullness of the measure
of the stature of Christ.
Second Chronicles 3:11,12 And the wings
of the cherubims were twenty cubits long: one wing of the one cherub was
five cubits, reaching to the wall of the house: and the other wing was
likewise five cubits, reaching to the wing of the other cherub.
The voice ought to reach to the wall; it ought to reach out to full salvation.
Anything short of that is no good. And one wing of the other cherub
was five cubits, reaching to the wall of the house: and the other wing
was five cubits also, joining to the wing of the other cherub.
Second Chronicles 3:13 The wings of these cherubim
spread themselves forth twenty cubits: and they stood on their feet, and
their faces were inward.
They stood on their feet; in other words, they had a walk. "Feet"
speaks of a walk. You wouldn't need feet if you weren't walking.
When we get over to the Book of Ezekiel, we will see that it says that
every one had straight feet. It means they had a straight walk.
I will give you a little preview: when Paul was converted and saw the Lord
and began his ministry, he was blind, and he was told to go to a street
called Straight. He started his journey on Straight Street.
Until we find Straight Street, I don't really think we start ours.
It says that their faces were inward, or as the margin says, it was
toward the house.
Second Chronicles 5:1-9 Thus all the work
that Solomon made for the house of the Lord was finished: and Solomon brought
in all the things that David his father had dedicated; and the silver,
and the gold, and all the instruments, put he among the treasures of the
house of God. Then Solomon assembled the elders of Israel, and all
the heads of the tribes, the chief of the fathers of the children of Israel,
unto Jerusalem, to bring up the ark of the covenant of the Lord out of
the city of David, which is Zion. Wherefore all the men of Israel
assembled themselves unto the king in the feast which was in the seventh
month (the Feast of Tabernacles).
And all the elders of Israel came; and the Levites took up the ark. And
they brought up the ark, and the tabernacle of the congregation, and al
the holy vessels that were in the tabernacle, these did the priests and
the Levites bring up. Also king Solomon, and all the congregation of Israel
that were assembled unto him before the ark, sacrificed sheep and oxen,
which could not be told nor numbered for multitude. And the priests brought
in the ark of the covenant of the Lord unto his place, to the oracle of
the house, into the most holy place, even under the wings of the cherubims;
for the cherubims spread forth their wings over the place of the ark, and
the cherubims covered the ark and the staves thereof above. And they drew
out the staves of the ark, that the ends of the staves were seen from the
ark before the oracle; but they were not seen without. And there it is
unto this day.
The ark of the covenant was placed in the Most Holy Place; the cherubims
stretched their wings out and covered it. In other words, when the
voice came forth from those wings, it came forth from over the ark of the
covenant. It came forth from over that which pictures the Lord Jesus
Christ and all He has done. That is the message. The message
of the cherubims filters through that ark, filters through the person and
work of Christ.
In everything we've talked about so far and everything that we've seen
about cherubims in scripture, we can see that in every case, they point
to the redeemed believers in the Lord. They point to a priesthood
after the order of Melchizedek. They point to a Person manifested
in a body. These are sacred things. They point to somebody
who is speaking the voice of one.
Two olive cherubims. Two great olive cherubims. Here is
the point of these Old Testament pictures: as we are worshipping the Lord,
I want you to take yourself back and I want you to find yourself in the
Temple of Solomon. That Most Holy Place was thirty feet high (twenty
cubits), thirty feet wide, thirty feet deep. It was covered with
gold. If you don't take this and meditate on it and think about it,
as soon as … you have to think in pictures, and that is the reason we have
the Old Testament. You're standing in a thirty foot wide Most Holy
Place, and you're looking on the back wall, and you're seeing stretched
halfway up that wall those cherubims. They've got feet, and they
are pointed ?). They've got heads, and they're pointed toward the
middle, and they're made out of olive wood. They are carved into
the wall, which is our salvation.
They've got wings, which speaks of a voice. They've got a purpose
for being there; it's not just ornamentation. It isn't just some
ornament. It is saying something to us. Everywhere you look
in that Most Holy Place, in the midst of the glory of God there, there
are cherubims everywhere. God has done what He planned to do.
God has produced what He wanted to produce. The redemptive work of
Christ has made this witness to the work of the Lord. It worked; it is
finished. He has made it; it is completed. These cherubims
are declaring a word that brings people back into the heavenlies again.
They are guarding the way. What is the way? The way is that
which they are overshadowing, that they are guarding. It is the ark
of the covenant; that is the way. That is the reason that the Bible
says of the ark, they were to follow that ark into a place of rest.
Same principle, same story. But who is overshadowing this?
Just like in Genesis 3. Also in the end of all of Solomon's temple,
you find cherubims who are guarding the way. That is what I want
you to see and meditate. If this becomes just a lesson of reading
four or five places in the Word of God, you've wasted your time here.
But if you can see yourself back there, if you can be transported back
and see in that place exactly by the Spirit what is being seen there, you
can say, "I know what that is speaking of; that's my destiny. That's
where I am headed." Praise God! Let's worship the Lord in that
How many of you believe that if you were put back in Solomon's temple
in the Most Holy Place, the place is filled with glory, how many of you
believe you might be able to worship there a little bit? Well, it's
better today, because the one that was there is in you! He is in
you. What we've got to do is by the Spirit, see the same thing you
would have seen back there, because it is more true today.