It’s Time To Talk About Angels
By Fin Sheridan
When was the last time you thought about angels? For most of us, I’m guessing it’s not something we regularly think about. Really, the only time they’ll appear in our world is during Christmas nativities. They’re a bit of a mystery really – do they have a place in our faith? New Age faiths and other distinctly un-Christian spiritualities often involve angelology and a distorted view of spiritual beings that make many Christians quite nervous about talking about them.
We can’t escape, however, that the Bible is filled with angels – they are a part of our world. Here’s 4 insights into angels that come straight from the Scriptures!
1. They have a different relationship with God than we do.
Whilst angels were created by God (like us), they are not in need of salvation like we are. It would appear, from 1 Peter 1:12, that angels can’t fully comprehend the wonder of the gospel – they “long to look” at it. Maybe it’s because angels cannot help but obey God, the idea of salvation simply blows their minds!
2. They are sent by God to serve and support Christians.
Hebrews 1:13-14 says ‘And to which of the angels did God ever say: “Sit at My right hand until I make Your enemies a footstool for Your feet”? Are not the angels ministering spirits, sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?’ This verse reinforces point 1 – no angel has been offered a seat at the right hand of God, as Christ has and as we are. It also lets us know what the role of angels are – they are sent to Christians, to minister, serve and support.
“Here’s 4 insights into angels that come straight from the Scriptures!”
3. They aren’t to be worshipped – but should be respected.
And I am John, the one who heard and saw these things. And when I had heard and seen them, I fell down to worship at the feet of the angel who had shown me these things. But he said to me, “Do not do that! I am a fellow servant with you and your brothers the prophets, and with those who keep the words of this book. Worship God!” Revelation 22:9
Angels are not to be worshipped. This is where the confusion often comes: since they are ‘heavenly beings’, humans have honoured them but also then moved from an appropriate honour and awe to worship. This is wrong. Angels seem to have a powerful effect on people they visit – often people fall down when they see one. However, like this verse shows, they are very uncomfortable with being worshipped because they have tremendous awareness of God and his worth.
4. They have multiple roles and tasks.
Angels serve multiple roles within the Bible. They provide messages such as the angels announcing the birth of Samson in Judges 13 or the birth of Jesus in the Gospels. They war on behalf of God’s people, such as the encounter Daniel has with an angel in Daniel 10. Psalms 91:11 says that angels will protect us. Isaiah, in his vision in Isaiah 6, saw angels worshipping and ministering to God.