2-5 "THE EYES OF THE LORD"
The eyes being the most expressive part of the face and therefore a very clear manifestation of ones self to other people, it is again to be expected that the eyes of God should be associated with the Angels. Thus God setting His face may refer to Him setting or pre-disposing the Angels in a certain course of action or attitude. Amos 9:4-8 is in this vein: "Though they go into captivity before their enemies, thence will I command the sword, and it shall slay them: and I will set Mine eyes (Angels) upon them for evil. . . the Lord God of Hosts (Angels) is He. . . have not I brought up Israel out of the land of Egypt (the Angels did this). . . the eyes of the Lord God are upon the sinful kingdom". God's Angelic eyes being set for evil would correspond well with the use of "Angels of evil" previously (Ps. 78:49).
- We see later that at the restoration it was "the Angel of the Lord" (Zech. 3:1,2) that rebuked the adversaries to the rebuilding of Jerusalem, and strengthened the builders: "But the eye of their God was upon the elders of the Jews, that they could not cause them to cease" (Ezra 5:5). This "eye of their God" equates with the frequent use of the phrase "good hand of our God upon us" in Ezra and Nehemiah- another Angelic phrase.
- Our Lord is described three times as having "eyes . . as a flame of fire" (Rev. 1:14; 2:18; 19:12). There seems an inescapable link with the Angels being a "flame of fire" (Ps. 104:4)- as if Jesus now being in control of the Angels uses them as His means of gathering information and executing judgement.
- "Seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent forth into all the earth" (Rev. 5:6). The Angels are made spirits (Ps. 104:4), "seven lamps of fire burning before them, which are the seven spirits of God" (Rev. 4:5)- and also, as we have seen, a flame of fire. "These seven. . . are the eyes of the Lord, which run to and from through the whole earth" (Zech. 4:10). In passing note how the Angel-eyes "run"; this is a figure referring to an enthusiastic response to God's word of command (see Hab. 2:2; Am. 8:11,12; Ps. 147:15 and cp. Ps. 103:21,21; Job 38:35).
- The eyes of the Lord are associated with His Angelic protection of His people- "the eyes of the Lord run to and from throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward Him" (2 Chron. 16:9). "The eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous" (Ps. 34:15). "The eye of the Lord is upon them that fear Him. . . the Angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear Him" (Ps. 33:18; 34:7).
- Dan. 4:17: "This matter is by the decree of the watchers. . the holy ones". The idea of being "watchers" is similar to that of being "eyes". The "holy one" is also an Angelic title.
- Amos 9:1 "I saw the Lord standing beside the altar". As no man can see God, this must have been an Angel standing there, similar to what Zecharias saw years later. This Angel announced that He personally would inflict judgement on Israel: "I will slay the last of them. . . I will set Mine eyes upon them for evil. . . the eyes of the Lord God are upon the sinful Kingdom, and I will destroy it. . . the Lord God of Hosts (Angels) is He that toucheth the land" (v. 4,8,5). Thus the Angel, the God of Hosts and the eyes of the Lord are all connected.
- The Lord's eyes are very much connected with Ezekiel's Angel-cherubim visions (1:18; 10:12), in that the wheels were full of eyes. Dan. 7 has a similar vision- "His throne was like the fiery flame, and His wheels as burning fire" (v. 9). The Angels are flames of fire (Ps. 104:4). "A fiery stream (from the burning-fire wheels) issued and came forth from before Him; thousand thousands . . ten thousand times ten thousand" (v. 10). These thousands are interpreted as Angels in Ps. 68:17 and Rev. 5:11, and in their issuing forth equate with the lightnings running and returning in Ezek. 1, which in turn represent the Angels ascending and descending between God and men in Jacob's vision.
- Is. 37:17: "Open Thine eyes, O Lord, and see". This obvious 'language of limitation' was in the context of the Sennacherib invasion, where the opening of God's eyes was through the action of the Angel going out to destroy the Assyrians.
- Prov. 22:12: "The eyes of the Lord preserve knowledge"- the cherubim-Angels keep the way to the tree of life, "the way" being the true knowledge of God (2 Peter 2:2; Heb. 5:2; Rom. 3:12; Acts 9:2; 16:17; 19:9 etc. ).
- Prov. 15:3: "The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good"- God omnipresent through His Spirit Angels.
- Solomon built a house for God's Name (2 Chron. 6:34), which was carried by the Angel (Ex. 23:20,21). This Angel literally dwelt in the temple. Solomon prayed that this Angelic presence would remain, so that fellowship with God, especially in prayer, could continue. He likens this Angelic presence to the eyes of the Lord being open- "let, I beseech Thee, Thine eyes be open, and Thine ears be attent (language of limitation) unto the prayer that is made in this place" (2 Chron. 6:40).
- "Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord" (Gen. 6:8)- i. e. the Angels who brought the flood (see Chapter 7).
- Many times the idea of God "seeing" is found in Angelic contexts- e. g. Gen. 31:42 "the God of my father, the God of Abraham and the fear of Isaac (i. e. the Angel whom Jacob perceived as his God-Gen. 48:15,16). . . hath seen mine affliction. . . and rebuked thee (Laban) yesternight" (in a vision- probably controlled by an Angel).
In the same way God through the Angel in the burning bush could stress "I have surely seen the affliction of My people" (the Angel's charges, Ex. 3:7). Dt. 26:7-10 is in the same vein: "We cried unto the Lord God of our fathers"-the Angel- He "looked on our affliction". The rest of the passage is clearly Angelic: "The Lord brought us forth out of Egypt. . . with signs. . . and He hath brought us into this place"- all done by the Angel. "Thou shalt set (the firstfruits) before the Lord thy God"- the Angel in the tabernacle. Similarly God 'looking' at the Egyptians through the cloudy pillar to effect the Red Sea deliverance, refers to the Angel in the cloud bringing about the destruction of the Egyptians, as is hinted at elsewhere.