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In Christian angelology, thrones (Ancient Greek: θρόνος, pl. θρόνοι; Latin: thronus, pl. throni) are a class of angels. This is based on an interpretation of Colossians 1:16. According to 1 Peter 3:21-22, Christ had gone to Heaven and "angels and authorities and powers" had been made subject to him.
According to Matthew Bunson, the corresponding order of angels in Judaism is called the abalim or "arelim/erelim, but this opinion is far from unrivaled. The Hebrew word erelim is usually not translated "thrones", but rather "valiant ones", "heroes", "warriors". The function ascribed to erelim in Isaiah 33:7 and in Jewish folklore is not consistent with the lore surrounding the thrones.
Thrones are sometimes equated with ophanim since the throne of God is usually depicted as being moved by wheels, as in the vision of Daniel 7:9 (Old Testament). Rosemary Ellen Guiley (1996: p. 37) states that:
The 'thrones'; also known as 'ophanim' (offanim) and 'galgallin', are creatures that function as the actual chariots of God driven by the cherubs. They are characterized by peace and submission; God rests upon them. Thrones are depicted as great wheels containing many eyes, and reside in the area of the cosmos where material form begins to take shape. They chant glorias to God and remain forever in his presence. They mete out divine justice and maintain the cosmic harmony of all universal laws.
- "For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him".
- 1 Peter 3:21-22
- http://www.tertullian.org/fathers/areopagite_13_heavenly_hierarchy.htm#c6 (accessed 11 of April 2018)
- Bunson, Matthew. Angels A to Z. New York:Crown Trade Paperbacks, 1996. ISBN 0-517-88537-9.
- Louis Ginzberg: Legends of the Jews 5:23, n. 64; 5:417, n. 117
- Guiley, Rosemary Ellen (1996). Encyclopedia of Angels. ISBN 0-8160-2988-1, p.37