SPECIAL TOPIC: SERAPHIM (BDB 977 II, KB 1360, #4)

A. Isaiah 6:2, 6 contains the only mention of them in the Bible. 

B. They are a particular order of angels whose name means "burning ones" (BDB 977 II).  The word is from the root "to burn" (BDB 976).

C. In Revelation 4:8, it seems that the Seraphim and the Cherubim are combined.  "The beasts" look like Cherubs which have two wings (Exod. 25:19) or four wings (Ezek. 1:6-14), but in Revelation they have six wings and occupy the place of Seraphim.

D. Possibly related to

1. "flying serpents," Num. 21:8; Deut. 8:15; Isa. 14:29; 30:6 (BDB 977 I plus BDB 733)

2. an Egyptian word serref ("guardian griffin," a combination of a lion and an eagle)

3. "winged snakes," from Tut-ankh-amon's throne (ANEP 415-417)

4. another Hebrew root (BDB 978), meaning "chief," in Arabic called "sharafa," meaning "to be noble" (2 PER, vol. 5, p. 349)

E. In Jewish folklore they are connected with "lightning."

F. There is so much about the spiritual realm that God has chosen not to reveal to us.  Be careful of (1) speculation; (2) logical theories; and (3) links to pagan mythology!

 

 


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