THE ANGELS

I have set the Lord always before me; because He is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. Psalms 16:8

As sure as there is a God, an earth and man on it, there are also angels. The Sadducees did not believe in angels, "For the Sadducees say there is no resurrection, neither angel, nor spirit; but the Pharisees confess both," [Acts 23:8]. The Jews worshipped angels "Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels." [Colossians 2:18]

The angels occupy a considerable and important place in the scriptures. From Genesis to Revelation, the word's angel and angels appear two hundred eighty-six times [286] times; in the Old Testament, one hundred ninety-two [192] times, and ninety-four [94] times in the New Testament. The Scriptures are rich with information concerning angels. We will look at some things concerning angels in the following paragraphs, the Lord willing.

Heaven is the native home of the holy elect angels, but they do not have infinite knowledge; "But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only," [Matthew 24:36]; "Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into." [1 Peter 1:12].

The angels are creatures created by God for His holy purpose, ministering spirits, not governing spirits; "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; And he is before all things, and by him all things consist," {Colossians 1:16-17]; "And sware by him that liveth for ever and ever, who created heaven and the things that therein are, and the earth , and the things that therein are, and the sea, and things which are therein," [Revelation 10:6]. The angels serve as our protectors: "Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, "That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father, which is in heaven," [Matthew 18:10]. This shows that there is a very personal bond between the angels of God and the children of God; "Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation>" [Hebrews 1:14].

I can think of several times in my life, and I am sure that you can in yours, when God's [our] angels have kept us from certain harm, and think of the many times that we have been delivered from harms way that we don't know about, "The Angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them," [Psalms 34:7]. We thank God for these heavenly protectors that God has assigned to us.

This also stands in strong support for the doctrine of election because our elect angels were created for our behalf; the text says "That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father," "Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?"

[Hebrews 1:14]. Although created before man, they were created to serve as 'ministering spirits' to all who would someday become God's 'heirs of salvation.'

They are the elect angels, they fell not, as the evil angels did. They take part in and are in sympathy with the affairs of God's elect children; "Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth," [Luke 15:10]. "For I think that God hath set forth us the apostles last, as it were appointed to death; for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to angels, and to men," [1 Corinthians 4:9]. The elect angels are assigned for the benefit of God's elect children.

God's angels are holy, "When the Son of Man shell come in His glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory," [Matthew 25:31].

The angels are glorious, bright, and frightening in their appearance: "And his countenance was like the countenance of an angel of God, very terrible," [Judges 13:6]; "His countenance was like lightning, and his raiment white as snow; And for fear of him the keepers did shake, and became as dead men," [Matthew 28:3-4].

The angels surround God's throne: "And I beheld, and I heard the voice of many angels round about the throne and the beasts and the elders; and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands; Saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honor, and glory, and blessing." [Revelation 5:11-12].

God does not rule the world by laws, principles, and inanimate power only, but by angels, living beings, they are the Kings couriers. He uses them to carry on the governing of His universe, however, glorious as their work is, they are, nevertheless, in subjection to Jesus, for the angels are round about the throne, The Lamb is on the Throne.

There are numerous times that the angels have been used as Gods couriers, we will give a few examples: "And there came two angels to Sodom at even; and Lot sat in the gate of Sodom; and Lot seeing them rose up to meet them; and he bowed himself with his face toward the ground; And he said, Behold now, my lords, turn in, I pray you, into your servant's house, and tarry all night, and wash your feet, and ye shall rise up early, and go on your ways. And they said, Nay; but we will abide in the street all night. And he pressed upon them greatly; and they turned in unto him, and entered into his house; and he made them a feast, and did bake unleavened bread, and they did eat," [Genesis 19: 1-3].

"And there came an angel of the Lord, and sat under an oak which was in Ophrah, that pertained unto Joash the Abiezrite; and his son, Gideon threshed by the winepress, to hide it from the Medianites. And the angel of the Lord appeared unto him, and said unto him. The Lord is with thee, thou mighty man of valor." {Judges 6:11-12].

"But the angel said unto him, Fear not Zacharias; for thy prayer is heard; and thy wife, Elizabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shalt call his name John. And Zacharias said unto the angel, Whereby shall I know this? for I am an old man, and my wife well stricken in years. And the angel answering said unto him, I am Gabriel, that stand in the presence of God; and am sent to speak unto thee, and to show thee these glad tidings," [Luke 1: 13-18-19].

"And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone about them; and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not; for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people, For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men." [Luke 2: 9-14].

Finally, "I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches, I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star," [Revelation 22:16]. In Hebrews 1:7 we read, "And of the angels he saith, Who maketh his angels spirits, and his ministers a flame of fire." The Greek word here rendered "Spirits" has a primary and secondary meaning, namely 'Spirits and Winds.' God is not only defining the nature of the celestial creatures, but is also describing their qualities and activities.

Elder Kenneth W. Clevenger Cameron, Missouri | Print This Page

Continued on ... Page 2 | Page 3 | Page 4 | Angel Worship?

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Article from The Banner of Love | The Angels part 1
Volume 67 - Number 3 | March 1999