Angels are an extremely intricate part of the Bible and of the supernatural dimension, yet people, even church people, know so little about them. People get their beliefs about angels from television or Hollywood, not the Bible. Remember the TV show Touched by an Angel? How about the movies Angels in the Outfield, or It’s a Wonderful Life? Clarence the angel taught us every time a bell rings an angel gets its wings? Most people know very little truth about angels.
By Pastor Delbert Young
Scriptures: Malachi 4:2, Psalm 148:1-2, 2 Kings 19:35, Hebrews 13:2, Judges 13:6, 21, Genesis 19:1, Genesis 19:5, Revelation 1:1, Revelation 19:9-10, Hebrews 1:14, Matthew 4:11, Revelation 12:7, Luke 1:30-31, Luke 22:42, Luke 22:4
Angels are an extremely intricate part of the Bible and of the SUPERNATURAL dimension, yet people, even church people, know so little about them. Many people get their beliefs about angels from television or Hollywood, not the Bible. How many remember the TV show “Touched by an Angel?” How about the movie “Angels in the Outfield?” How about the movie “It’s a Wonderful Life,” which plays hundreds of times every Christmas? Remember, Clarence the angel who taught us how every time a bell rings an angel gets its wings? Some people think that when a relative dies, say their grandmother, she goes to heaven and becomes a guardian angel. The truth of the matter is what we think we know about angels, we learned from TV, movies, or from misconceived tradition. Most people know very little truth about angels.
When most people say, “Angels,” they think of the image of a beautiful female creature with wings. Angels do not have wings. Sorry! Go ahead and search it out. Judy and I were talking about this. She said, “Well, what about the scripture that says, “He will send angels with healing in their wings”? So, I showed her what the scripture actually says.
Malachi 4:2 But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings…
She repented. Let me quickly say that other creatures of the Heavenly Host do have wings. Cherubim have wings, four of them (Ex 25:20; Eze 1:6; 10:5). Seraphim have six wings (Isa 6:2). The living creatures in the book of Revelation have six wings (Rev 4:8), but angels do not have wings, at least not in the Bible.
As already noted, the Heavenly Host includes more than Angels only.
Psalm 148:1-2 Praise the LORD. Praise the LORD from the heavens, praise him in the heights above. Praise him, all his ANGELS, praise him, all his HEAVENLY HOSTS.
Angels are in a special “class.” There is a difference between angels and the remainder of theheavenly host. The heavenly host include: (1) SERAPHIM – creatures around the throne who sing, “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty” (Isa 6:2-3). They interact with the Lord, not people. (2) CHERUBIM – a cherub is stationed at the Garden of Eden to guard the Tree of Life (Gen 3:24). Their images are engraved on the mercy seat (Exo 25:18), woven into the veil and engraved into the overhead covering of the tabernacle and temple (Exo 26:31). They are always in the presence of the Lord and they interact with the Lord, not people (Eze 10:1). (3) ARCHANGELS – stand guard over nations (Michael Dan 12:1; Jude 1:9) and interact some with people. (4) THE HOST OF HEAVEN – army of the Lord (Jos 5:13) – war with and for God’s people (2Ki 6:17). (5) PRINCIPALITIES are powers – both Godly and ungodly powers over areas. (6) THE ANGEL OF THE LORD GOD, which some teach as a “Christophany” (appearance of Christ in the OT), is given special missions. The mission might be to one individual (Gen 16:7), or to take care of business in a severe way.
2 Kings 19:35 That night the angel of the LORD went out and put to death a hundred and eighty-five thousand men in the Assyrian camp…
Exodus 3:2 There the angel of the LORD appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush…
There are over sixty scriptures speaking of the Angel of the Lord. Then there are (7) ANGELS. What is the purpose of angels? Angels interact with people. Angels help us connect the natural world with the SUPERNATURAL.
Who saw the movie “Michael” with John Travolta? In the movie Michael is a beer drinking, cigarette smoking Archangel living on earth with beautiful wings hidden under his trench coat. (VIDEO)
Before I really get into teaching about angels, I want to look at a scripture.
Hebrews 13:2 Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some people have ENTERTAINED ANGELS WITHOUT KNOWING IT. (KJV: entertained angels unawares)
What does that tell us about the physical appearance of angels? Angels must look like people. Right? It would not be difficult to recognize a Cherub with four wings and eyes all around etc, or Seraphim with six wings, or fiery chariots, etc. However, in the scriptures, an angel has the physical appearance of a man. At the announcement of the birth of Samson, an angel came to Samson’s mother.
Judges 13:6, 21 Then the woman came and told her husband, saying, A man of God came unto me, and his countenance was like the countenance of an angel of God, very terrible: but I asked him not whence he was, neither told he me his name… But the angel of the LORD did no more appear to Manoah and to his wife. Then Manoah knew that he was an angel of the LORD.
He looked like a man, but there was something about his countenance. My point is that if you are waiting for a “10-foot being” with wings, or some other physically distinguishing identification, to experience the presence of an angel, you will miss it. There are many situations like this in the Bible. I will show you one more that took place at Sodom.
Genesis 19:1 The two angels arrived at Sodom in the evening, and Lot was sitting in the gateway of the city. When he saw them, he got up to meet them and bowed down with his face to the ground.
You remember the story. Two angels came to Sodom to remove Lot and his family from the pending judgment. Lot saw them, as did others. The angels went into Lot’s house. The men of the city came to Lot’s house. We read…
Genesis 19:5 They called to Lot, “WHERE ARE THE MEN who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us so that we can have sex with them.”
This is consistent with the appearance of angels in the scriptures. They look like people.
Of the entire heavenly host, it is with angels you and I interact. Because of that, we will focus our time today on angels. Let’s look at the original meaning of the word. The OT Hebrew word:Angel – mal’ak – a messenger; spec. of God, i.e. an angel (also a prophet, priest or teacher). The NT Greek word: aggelos – (to bring tidings); a messenger; esp. an “angel”; by impl. a pastor.Have you ever thought of a person as being an angel? This is why the Bible says we entertain angels without knowing it – unaware. My goal is not to lessen an angel to you. My goal is to expand to you the truth of what an angel is and does.
Revelation 1:1 The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must soon take place. He made it known by sending his ANGEL to his servant John
An angel actually brought John the revelation of Jesus Christ. The angel took John into the supernatural realm four times and showed him many spiritual things.
(NLT) REV 19:9-10 And the angel said, “Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding feast of the Lamb.” And he added, “These are true words that come from God.” Then I fell down at his feet to worship him, but he said, “No, don’t worship me. FOR I AM A SERVANT OF GOD, JUST LIKE YOU AND OTHER BROTHERS AND SISTERS WHO TESTIFY OF THEIR FAITH IN JESUS. Worship God. For the essence of prophecy is to give a clear witness for Jesus.
This angel was a being that opened up the spiritual/supernatural dimension to John. John wanted to worship the angel, but NO! The angel said he was a servant JUST LIKE John and JUST LIKE other men and women who testify of their faith in Jesus. (Also see Rev 22:8-9)
I am not saying angels are not supernatural beings. I am saying there is much more. Angels connect the seen with the unseen. It seems angels can come in a totally unseen way, or they can come in the form of a person. My point is to expand your understanding of angels to something other than angelic beings flying around in the atmosphere. We ENTERTAIN THEM UNAWARES. They look like people. YOU MIGHT BE SITTING NEXT TO ONE. YOU MIGHT BE LOOKING AT ONE. YOU MIGHT BE ONE!
Angels do many things and we can’t look at everything they do, but let’s look at a few. WHAT DO ANGELS DO?
ANGELS MINISTER TO YOU.
Hebrews 1:14 Are not ALL ANGELS MINISTERING SPIRITS sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?
All Angels minister. They minister in all sorts of ways. After fasting food and water 40 days, the devil tempted Jesus with three severe temptations.
Matthew 4:11 Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.
The Greek word translated ministered is diakoneo – to be an attendant, i.e. wait upon as a host, friend, or teacher. Have you ever been just mentally, physically, and spiritually wiped out from something the devil put you through and someone showed up to take care of you? Don’t discount that you were entertaining an angel unaware. Angels minister to people.
ANGELS ARE WARRIORS.
Revelation 12:7 And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels
Angels are fighters and warriors against the devil. They want the devil and his angels brought down over areas and over the lives of people. Angels have a desire to bring the devil down.
ANGELS ARE MESSENGERS.
Angels bring more than a simple message from the Lord to people. They bring a life-changing message. This is a primary purpose of an angel. We have already seen that an angel brought a message to Samson’s parent, Lot, and John (the Revelation). This is true repeatedly in the scriptures. Find an angel and you will find a life-changing message from God. Here is one of the most famous messages brought by an angel.
Luke 1:30-31 But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus.
An angel brought the greatest message ever. The savior of the world will be born to you and his name will be Jesus. Don’t be unaware. An angel brought you the greatest message of your life… Jesus Christ. He will be born in you. God loves you and through Jesus, you will be saved. An angel brought the message of the coming Savior to Mary. Angels announced to the shepherds that the Savior had been born. Angels announced at the tomb that the Savior had risen from the dead. Angels are messengers to you from God. What else do Angels do?
ANGELS STRENGTHEN YOU.
Today is Palm Sunday. This was the day Jesus rode into Jerusalem and began his final week before his arrest and eventual crucifixion Friday. After the Passover supper Thursday evening, Jesus and his disciples moved to the Garden of Gethsemane. There Jesus began praying.
Luke 22:42 “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.”
This was the most difficult time for Jesus. It was such stressful agony that he experienced blood coming through his pours with sweat (hematidrosis). We have all stressed, but not like that. Jesus didn’t have a death wish. Jesus did not want to die. He loved life. However, even Jesus needed strength to fulfill God’s will. As he cried out to God, here is what happened.
Luke 22:43 An angel from heaven appeared to him and STRENGTHENED HIM.
The angel strengthened the Lord Jesus to fulfill a most difficult, yet most important part of his life. If you look back at your life, there have been times when you faced something bringing you great agony. You did not want to deal with it, but you knew you had to. You may have wept and sweated. You cried out to God. Then something supernatural strengthened you. What was that? An angel from heaven strengthened you.
Some of you right this moment are facing some serious issues. Cry out to God. God will send an angel to strengthen you. Some are facing marital challenges. You are thinking, we cannot get through this, but an angel can come and give you strength. Some are attempting to overcome a sin. You think, I just can’t overcome it. I’m too weak. Yes, you are, but God can send you a ministering spirit to strengthen you. God wants you to succeed more than you want to succeed. He created angels to help you succeed.
We live in a physical world. However, there is a SUPERNATURAL world where light battles darkness. You are in Spiritual Warfare no matter if you want to be or not. God has given you the person of the Holy Spirit with all his gifts and powers to help you. There is a real devil and he has real demons planning and scheming your demise this very moment no matter if you believe it or not. However, there are angels you entertain without knowing it – unawares. They minister to youin all sorts of ways. They are warriors bringing the devil and his demons down in your life. They are messengers bringing you the true words of God for your life. They strengthen you to do what you must do. Some of you need their SUPERNATURAL presence right now. Others of you will need their SUPERNATURAL PRESENCE one day. Cry out to God and he will send an angel tostrengthen and minister to you.
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