This is an addendum to my reflections on wings a few weeks ago.
Israel is sometimes conceived as a four-cornered land (Ezekiel 7:2), modeled after the four-cornered altar (Exodus 27:2; 38:2) or a four-cornered house (Job 1:19). Israelites are priests; their land is an altar where they make their daily, living sacrifices. Leaders form the corners of the land (Judges 20:2; 1 Samuel 14:38, where the word for “chief” is pinnah, “corner”). This is the source of the imagery of a king as a “chief cornerstone” (Psalm 118:22; Isaiah 19:13; 28:16).
If the land is winged, so are its inhabitants. As I noted in the earlier post, every Israelite has a tassel at the four “wings” of his robe; he is a heavenly being. And Zechariah makes that explicit, predicting that one day ten men will take hold of the “wing” of every Jew, pleading to go with him (Zechariah 8:3). They hope that if they grab a Jew, they’ll fly to heaven.