The Authority Is Invested in the Man on the Throne (continued)
Wheels Speak of Directness
Then the second thing: the wheels speak of directness with deviation. This is one of the most difficult points in this vision to interpret. But as I see it, it seems to mean this: when God goes forward, God is never held up by something that He has not foreseen. If God does change His direction, that is all in the pattern, that is not an emergency, that is not because God had not anticipated the situation. Now probably you find that difficult to understand. Well, come back again to what we have just been saying about Peter. It looks as though God is changing His direction, for right up to this point He has been moving with Israel, all His goings up to this point have been related to Israel. Now it looks as though He is changing His direction, and that was the problem for Peter. It was such a big change in the direction of God. Peter wanted the Lord to keep straight on with Israel, and not to change His course to the Gentiles. It looked as though was changing course, simply because He had come up against difficulties in Israel. That is how some Bible expositors interpret this.
God came up against the difficulty in Israel, and therefore He had to go to the Gentiles. Going to the Gentiles is an entirely different policy of the Lord, simply because the Jews presented Him with a difficulty. That is how Peter viewed the thing, and he felt very badly about it, and he would have said, "Lord, You just cannot do this. You have gone all through the centuries with Israel. You cannot change course now." Now do you see the point? - the fact is that God was not changing course. The Bible makes it perfectly clear that God always did have the Gentiles in mind. He would reach the Gentiles through the Jews, but that is quite another thing. If the Jews fail to serve Him in that matter, He is going on with His purpose all the same.
These wheels go straight on. They can change direction, but that does not mean a change of purpose. Even in the seeming change of direction, they are still going straight. God is not caused to go our of His way because of circumstances. He just goes straight on. Now that is a very difficult thing to understand when you read this vision of the wheels, but I think the illustration of Israel and the Gentiles is a key to this situation.
When you come to the end of the New Testament, you come up against another difficulty. This time with the Church in general. It seems as though the Lord has met another obstacle, and it looks as though He has to turn out of His way to take another course. It looks as though He has to leave the Church in general and deviate to the overcomers. That is only one way of viewing it. The Divine Way is that God is still going on with His purpose. There is no deviation in purpose - God still goes straight on. Well, I think we have said enough about that, but there is a lot of instruction in that if you will think about it.
(continued with # 28 -"Wheels Touch the Earth and Are Lifted Up")