Definition: The term angels means “messenger.” They are amazing in appearance and sent as messengers of God, and go were he wants them to at great speed. (Ezk.1:4-28). The angels were in existence before the creation of man but did not exist from eternity as the Father, Son and Holy Spirit have existed. They are highly intelligent, powerful and very special beings. The Son of God in a manifestation was called the Angel of the Covenant.
1. They are created beings. Hebrews draws a distinction between the Son of God and the angels. Christ is not an angel He created them (Col. 1:16). They possess the highest quality of created life.
2. They are spiritual beings. They have spiritual bodies, as we shall have eventually spiritual bodies. Those who died before the work of Christ on the Cross-and the resurrection were called “spirits in prison” (1 Peter. 3:19). Angels have a body that is appropriate for their spiritual condition. They have and can appear to different people. They have also appeared to Abraham as three men (Gen. 18). Samson father and mother saw an angel (Judges 130.
3. Are angels Sexless? Our Lord said, “ for in the resurrection they neither marry or are given in marriage, but are as the angels in heaven” (Matt. 22:29-30). They are always referred to as “he” in the masculine.
4. Angles never die. “nor can they die anymore, for they are equal to the angels and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection…” (Luke 20:36). And our Lord “was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death…” (Heb. 2:9). He was made lowered in order to die. Angels cannot die they are mortal.
5. Heaven is their headquarters. (Matt. 18:10; 22:30; Rev.5:11).
6. Their status. They are inferior to the Son but superior man. Our Lord was mad a “little lower than the angels”. Man is a little lower than the angels Psalm 8:4-6).
Names Used For Angels
1. They are called “principalities, powers, rulers of darkness in this world” Eph. 1:21; 6:12).
2. They are called “holy” angels (Lk. 9:26).
3. They are called “elect” (1 Tim. 5:21). This means some were elect and some were not and are lost. There are the good angels and the bad angels. Which are called “the devil and his angels “ and “evil spirits” (Matt.24:41; Eph.6).
4. They are called “ministering” angels (Heb. 1:12-14) “Are they not ministering spirits sent forth to minister for them who are heirs of eternal life”. One of their main functions is to minister to us. Eventually when we are in heave we will be higher than they but will worship together with them in the presence of God Himself.
5. The “cheribum” (Ps. 99:1, Ezk. 10:1-22). In the Scriptures they along with the “seraphim” and “living creatures” always dwell in the presence of the Godhead. They are symbolic of our ultimate salvation and glorification, and our eternal existence before the presence of the glorious God. The “cherubim” were placed at the east end of the Garden of Eden with a flaming sword to prevent them from entering back into Paradise. (Gen.3). Man cannot go in there on his own. But God made another way for man to come back, it is through Jesus Christ, He can bring us back.
6. The “seraphim” (Isa. 6:2).
7. The “living creatures” or “beasts”. (Rev. 4). We are told they can have the face of different animals though generally the face of a man.
How Many Angels Are There?
They are countless, too many to number. The shepherds heard a “great multitude of the heavenly host.” when Jesus was born (Lk. 2:13). They cannot be numbered “innumerable company of angels” (Heb. 12:22). John tells us there are thousands upon thousands, a great, mighty, host, a myriad of those angelic beings (Rev. 5:11).
Do Angels have Rank?
There are not all identical or equal in power and authority.
1. The Archangels. The Scriptures describe archangels 1 Thess. 4:16; Jude 9.
2. Specific names.
a) Michael the archangel has a special relationship with Israel (Dan. 10:13). He protects and cares for them. He fought for them against the Prince of Persia (Dan. 10:13).
b) Gabriel stands in the presence of God waiting to be given a message. He was sent to tell Mary all that would happen to her and how she would be the mother of the Son of God (Lk. 1:26). It was he who gave the message to Zacherias (Lk.1: 19). He had a special function of our Lord coming into the world.
c) Principalities (Eph.6:12).
d) Powers “Rulers of the darkness of this world…spiritual wickedness in high places”.
The mighty angels “excel in strength” (Ps. 103:20). The Angel’s power is greater than human power and demons are great in power.
What do good Angels Do?
a) They are “watching God.” They are always before the face of the Father, they “watch Him” always looking for the slightest indication of His will and wanting to do His pleasure (Matt. 22:30). .
b) They are worshipping. Their dwelling place is in heaven round about the throne of God. They spend their time adoring God and the Lamb. (Rev.5). They serve God (Ezk. 1:4-28). They are ever awake, anxious and eager to do His biding and pleasure. They go immediately throughout theuniver4se at his biding.
c) They are looking in to our salvation. “Peter, speaking about our salvation says, “which things the angels desire to look into” (1 Peter 1:12). The marvel and wonder of our salvation is wonderful to them. They are amazed at God’s love in sending His Son to be born of virgin and live here on this planet and die for sinful en. This astounds them.
d) They are learning through the Church the wonders of Christ.. Paul says that through the Chruch the angels are shown the wonders of Christ (Eph.3:10). We show them the grace of God, something that they do into fully comprehend. They are taught about redemption and the love of God. They are aware of the humility of God.
e) They are looking at us. “For this cause a woman ought to have power on her head because of the angels” (1 Cor. 11:10). They observe order in the church. A woman has her head covered to show that she is under authority to the man. She should be covered because o f the presence of the angels.
f) God uses the angels as instruments of His will. The Law was given to the children of Israel through the medium of the angels. (Heb.2:2, c.f. Gal. 3:19; Acts 7:53).
They reveal God’s purposes. It was through angels that God revealed to Abraham His purpose with regard to Sodom and Gomorrah (Gen.18), and He revealed His will to Jacob more than once in the same way. Gideon also was told God’s purposes through an angel, and in the New Testament Zechariahs was told about the birth of his son, who became known as John the Baptist. It was an angel who told Joseph not to worry about the condition of his espoused wife. It was an angel who also told them to flee to Egypt, and an angel who told them to come out of Egypt.
Is it not wonderful that God blesses believers by using angles o to protect and care for His own (Heb.1: 14)? They minister to you and to me. Cornelius was praying when an angel came to him and began to give him a preview of his own salvation (Acts 10).
g) Angels protect us. (Psalm 34:7; 91:10-11); They protected Daniel in the den of lions, and he came out unscathed? He said it was because “My God hath sent his angels, and hath shut the loins mouths” (Dan. 6:22).
h) Angels can give us guidance. We are told in Acts 8:26 the angels of the Lord said to Philip, “Arise and go toward the south…” These directions given by an angel led to the conversion of the Ethiopian eunuch.
i) Angels can sometimes cheer us up, give us comfort and consolation. Pal told his companions on the shi, which was already in a shipwreck condition “For there stood by me this night an angel of God, whose I am, an whom I serve.” (Acts 27:23-24). The angel had a message from God for Paul and cheered him up. The servant of Elisha who was frightened because of the enemy was coming with great might to attack them, but they were also surrounded by a great host of angels who would destroy the enemy (2 Kings 6).
j) God can send angels to deliver us. They sometimes take physical form. When Peter was arrested and thrown into prison an angel of the Lord smote him on the side, wakening him, raised him up. His chains fell off and the angels told him to “gird thyself, and bind on thy sandals”. Then the angel went and opened the door and gates and Peter simply followed him. He was delivered out of prison by an angel.
k) The angels receive our spirits when we die and take us to Paradise. The angels carried the beggar to Abraham’s bosom. (Lk. 16:22-23). This is the teaching of the Lord Jesus Christ himself. This helps the Christian deal with the fear and dread of death. When we die we will not be alone or go to some lonely place as a disembodied spirit to an unknown world. No! The angels will receive you and conduct you, and take you to the lord in heaven. We are not told that angels take care of unbelievers when they die for we read the rich man “died and was buried.” The angels did not come to receive him. The Bible does not teach a doctrine called “guardian angels”; they do guard believers among all these other things. They are looking after us. l) Angels rejoice when a sinner repents (Lk. 15:10). m) Children have Angels (Matt.18:10). 0) Angels execute judgment. We see this in Acts 12:23 when the angel smote Herod because he did not give God the glory. The people praise him and said he spoke with “a voice of god, and not of a man”. “Immediately the angel of the Lord smote him…he was eaten of worms, and he gave up the ghost.” p) The angels will function at the final judgment. Our Lord said in the Parable of the Tares that the “The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; and shall cast them into a furnace of fire.” Vs 49 “So shall it be it be at the of the world; the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just.” Again in Matthew 24:30-31 “And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather the elect together form the four winds, form one end of heaven to the other.” Paul says the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his (1 Theses. 1:6-8). The elect who were known from before the world was created are brought home to Him. They are the ones he purchased with his own blood. will be gathered to meet him.