Daniel 7:9

He sat on a fiery throne with wheels of blazing fire.

There are also references to wheels in Ezekiel Chapter 10 (which may or may not be related).

Is there a significance to the throne having wheels?

Are they actually wheels? Why are they on fire?

I read the Wikipedia article on Ophanim and it almost led be to believe that these "wheels" were actually beings that enabled the thrones to move.


David Pawson has an interesting answer, referring to a similar vision in Ezekiel 1. First, bear in mind that the Israelites were at that time in captivity in Babylon. Then:

Clearly, the throne can travel in any direction. This symbolizes the omnipresence of God, who is able to be anywhere and everywhere. He is a mobile God. This is significant because, until this point, every vision of God’s throne in the Bible had portrayed it as static, fixed in Jerusalem. So it was a comfort for Ezekiel to learn that God’s throne was mobile, for it meant that he could move to Babylon. This was an important truth to communicate to the exiles, who may have believed that God lived in one place, hundreds of miles away in Jerusalem.

Furthermore, the ‘eyes’ on the rims of the wheels tell us that God can see everything, everywhere. It’s a very meaningful picture. No wonder Ezekiel was overwhelmed with the vision and fell to the ground.

Summary: yes the throne has wheels to symbolise that God is with His people, even when they are not near the temple. But, no, they are not literal. God is speaking to Ezekiel in a vision which he and the people he preached it to would immediately understand and draw comfort from.

For more information see this page which quotes directly from David Pawson's Unlocking the Bible Omnibus.


  *In Daniel, as in Ezekiel, God cracked the door that we might peer into the heavenly realm.  In Daniel 7, we also have the only directly related vision referencing the Lord's throne with wheels.  These two visions of the throne have similarities and there is much imagery.  However, in Ezekiel the wheels are described in much greater detail. 

Fiery Throne: The throne in this dream is described with the Ancient of Days seated and the throne as "burning as with fire and its wheels were ablaze."  In and of itself this description wouldn't make much sense.  However, in light of the historic understanding of the chariot throne, it does.  It is reminiscent of the wheels in Ezekiel's vision.  In the first chapter of this study, we observed that Ezekiel beheld a moving throne that included the chariot of the cherubim and their wheels.  Those wheels were to the prophet burning with fire. The fact that the wheels are included in a vision where many other things in the passage are interpreted as allegoric/figurative gives evidence that the wheels are to be understood in this same sense. Though these two passages are the only places in scripture that the wheels of the throne are spoken of directly, there are many passages that use related imagery.  The words "chariots of the Lord" can be found in a greater number.  This concept is important in that it sheds light on the more obscure passages where wheels are associated with the throne.

Imagery in the Fire of God:  As noted earlier, the wheels are associated with fire.  In a related passage, Psalm 97 states: "1 Yahweh reigns. … Righteousness and justice are the foundation of his throne. 3A fire goes before him, and burns up his adversaries on every side."*       

Quotes from the online eBook "The Wheels of God's Throne" (Ch2) by G.Thomas Windsor


Perhaps the wheels of God's throne are to indicate to us that God's throne is not staying in "Heaven" (which is actually where God's throne is)! Revelation 21-22 reveal that God's throne will MOVE - it will descend with the New Jerusalem to the (New) Earth after Jesus' Second Coming! God's ultimate plan is to join with His creation, creating Heaven on the New Earth, dwelling with us face-to-face forever, just as was the case before the Fall in Genesis 1-2.

God's ultimate plan is to bring the Heavenly and Earthly realms together in the resurrection and eternal Kingdom of God.

"And this is the plan: At the right time he will bring everything together under the authority of Christ—everything in heaven and on earth." - Ephesians 1:10 (NLT)

It is all thanks to Jesus' victory over sin and death on the cross, and His future victory in establishing the Kingdom of God in power and fullness as He vanquishes the evil worldwide empire of the AntiChrist. All glory to the lamb that was slain! The eternal dominion of the eternal Kingdom of God belongs to the Son of God and Son of Man, our amazing, loving, humble, just, and mighty savior! As the second/last Adam who fulfilled perfectly the will of the Father as a human (yet eternally was and is fully God, the Second Person of the Holy Trinity), He alone is worthy to fulfill the dominion mandate given by God to humanity, as the fully-God, fully-man, King of kings and Lord of lords.


I believe this to be a literal description of the Thrown of God. There is plenty of literal scripture surrounding the fiery wheels as to not interpret this as symbolic. Notice the literal descriptions of His person, same as at the transfiguration, him at the second coming and in John's vision in Revelation. And then you have literal descriptions of those attending him and those that stood before him, details not masked by type or symbol. Similarly fiery chariots are literally seen by Elisha and his servant when God opened the servants eyes. In addition Elisha saw an Angle chariot at the ascension of Elijah. I believe these to be descriptions of Supernatural reality. Then the passage goes on to speak of the literal return of Jesus Christ. So I would not put a symbolic interpretation on the description of His thrown. I think it speaks of God being a God who is omnipresent but can also inhabit space and time with his Creation.

Dan.7:9 “As I looked, “thrones were set in place, and the Ancient of Days took his seat. His clothing was as white as snow; the hair of his head was white like wool. His throne was flaming with fire, and its wheels were all ablaze. A river of fire was flowing, coming out from before him. Thousands upon thousands attended him; ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him. The court was seated, and the books were opened. “Then I continued to watch because of the boastful words the horn was speaking. I kept looking until the beast was slain and its body destroyed and thrown into the blazing fire. (The other beasts had been stripped of their authority, but were allowed to live for a period of time.) “In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence. He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all nations and peoples of every language worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed.

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