I loathe cherubs. I mean the little winged babies of Baroque art, and the golden plastic one my children insist on hanging on the tree each Christmas purely to annoy me. They’re just wrong.
I know that technically they’re called putti rather than cherubs but that’s not the name everyone uses.
When Ezekiel saw cherubs in his vision, they weren’t cute. They were awe-inspiring spiritual beings who terrified him and who he can’t fully describe.
While remembering that Ezekiel’s vision is not exactly a calm, collected description of the natives of heaven, it does remind us that there is a whole spiritual realm with its own inhabitants, and that these inhabitants are not winged babies or, for that matter, elegant Pre-Raphaelite models. We’re dealing with a very different world here, and very different kinds of creatures.
The cherubim point us to the glory of God. After all, if even his servants are overwhelming and beyond coherent description in human language, how much more is God? We approval even the attendants of God’s throne with reverence, even with fear. But then we find that the one seated on the throne they carry and guard is our own Father.
One more important bit of good news – these creatures may look weird and terrifying, but they, like us, are creatures and servants of God. They’re on our side.