Horses and Chariots of Fire

Horses and chariots appear in the Old Testament. They are not a natural phenomenon of the time-space continuum. What are they?



The horses and chariots of fire are not natural phenomenon of the time-space continuum.

Rather, they reside in the invisible realm. The “spirit” realm.

People do not normally see them.

What are they? Here are the top four theories:

  • They are angels
  • They are manifestations of the power of the LORD God
  • They are like the Shekinah, the glory-cloud of the LORD God
  • They are a heart on fire for the LORD God

The Orthodox mystic Olivier Clément wrote:

The chariot by which a person speeds into glory is a heart on fire.


2 Kings 2:11. As they continued on and talked, behold, a chariot of fire and horses of fire separated them; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.

2 Kings 6:17. Elisha prayed, and said, “LORD, please open his eyes, that he may see.” the LORD opened the young man’s eyes, and he saw; and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire around Elisha.

2 Kings 7:6. For the Lord had made the army of the Syrians to hear the sound of chariots and the sound of horses, even the noise of a great army; and they said to one another, “Behold, the king of Israel has hired against us the kings of the Hittites and the kings of the Egyptians to attack us.”

2 Kings 13:14. Now Elisha became sick with the illness of which he died; and Joash the king of Israel came down to him, and wept over him, and said, “My father, my father, the chariots of Israel and its horsemen!


2 Maccabees 10:29. When the battle became strong, there appeared out of heaven to their adversaries five splendid men on horses with bridles of gold, and two of them, leading on the Jews,

2 Maccabees 10:30. and taking Maccabaeus in the midst of them, and covering him with their own armor, guarded him from wounds, while they shot arrows and thunderbolts at the enemies. For this reason, they were blinded and thrown into confusion, and were cut to pieces, filled with bewilderment.

2 Maccabees 11:8. As they were there, close to Jerusalem, a horseman appeared at their head in white apparel, brandishing weapons of gold.



1. Olivier Clément, The Roots of Christian Mysticism. Hyde Park, New York: New City Press, 1993, p. 247.



CHAPTERS: 01, 02, 03, 04, 05, 06, 07, 08, 09, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25

RESOURCES: Summary, Outline, Memorize, Corrupt Leaders, Miracles, Horses and Chariots of Fire

Unless otherwise noted, all Bible quotations on this page are from the World English Bible and the World Messianic Edition. These translations have no copyright restrictions. They are in the Public Domain.


Author: todd

At Explore the Faith, I share insights into the Bible and theological writings. If you like what I write, become my partner by donating. Help me reach the world for the Lord Jesus Christ.