THE ANGELS – GOD’S INSTRUMENTS OF
Their nature, relationship to the Father and an indication of our hope.
Ephesians 3:14-16 - From the Father the whole
family is named - in heaven as well as earth cp. Job 38:7 - the angels are
God’s sons, shining glorious people.
What are angels? The real meaning of the word
‘angel’ is shown in James 2:25 “messengers” = Gk
angelos (usually rendered angels). So this is precisely what the word means.
Same in the Old Testament.
1 Samuel 25:14 - Hebrew ‘messengers’ (Malak
- cp. OLD TESTAMENT Book Malachi) - see Malachi 3:1 cp. Matthew
11:10. The word therefore describes their work rather than what they are by
nature. Luke 7:24 – “messengers” of John (Gk
Jesus himself sent out angelos (human
“messengers”) Luke 9:52. In Luke 1:19 Gabriel was a
messenger sent forth to speak to Zechariah, then to Mary, v26.
They are God’s messengers to us. We can be thankful
that God has opened a means of contact for mankind. Genesis 18:1-5 - they
are in their form as men - that Abraham thought they were men is clear, as
Hebrews 13:1-2 establishes. Rather than they looking like us, we look
like them, Genesis 1:26-27 (God = Elohim and speaks of the angels). v26
is God in manifestation; v27 God as the author of the creative power. We are in
the form of God, as the angels also (James 3:9).
God cannot be seen by man until he receives a change in
nature, 1 Timothy 6:15-16; Revelation 21:1-4 - these verses have
their fulfillment at the end of the Millennium. Matthew 18:10 - angels
do look upon their Father. Ultimately if we are faithful the same privilege
will be ours, Matthew 5:8. There cannot be a greater blessing than
Their Function Described
Hebrews 1:4 - Christ is greater than the angels;
v5 they are sons of God in a similar sense to the way we become sons of
God. Jesus is the ONLY BEGOTTEN SON; v7 His angels are spirit beings -
immortal, powerful, glorious; v14 they are preparing us for the salvation
God desires to bestow upon His children who are responding to His
See also Psalm 103:20-21 - mighty in strength, doing
according to His word in which they rejoice. Psalm 104:3-4
(“wind” in v3 = spirit” v4) - the basis of Paul’s
comment in Hebrews 1. To minister in aid and protect (flame of fire) cp.
2 Kings 6:9-17 - a visible sign of their function as an army to protect
Proverbs 15:3 - a description of the angels, cp. 2
Chronicles 16:7-9 show that angels are present as Yahweh’s eyes. Truly
God does have OMNISCIENT COGNISANCE but His angels are where his servants are.
As messengers they engage also in communication to God as well. If your heart
is toward God trouble may come upon you but will NOT overwhelm you.
Psalm 34:1-9,15,19,22 - progression of ideas, v7 the principle. (Cp.
Elisha’s deliverance, 2 Kings 6). What God did to Sodom was just. God
did it for Lot’s sake, for Abraham’s sake and for our
Genesis 11:11-13, 24-29 - the angelic help Jacob
Genesis 32:1-2 - supported by seeing God’s army
camp and his own, v3 messengers (malak); v9 his prayer. God gave his answer in
a contest. vv24-29 Jacob’s changed name to Israel - if he prevails with
angels need he fear men. v30 God is seen in others who manifest Him
– angels yes and ourselves if we will let Him, cp. Hosea
Angels’ names express:
- their function, and
- the aspect of God which they
Angels in Daniel
Daniel 3:19-25 (a son of the gods) - the angel of God
had preserved His servants v28, (as in Psalm 34:7).
Daniel 6:19-22 - shows similarly an angel of God
preserving Daniel. In serving God we will be saved if we are faithful - the
angels work on our behalf if it is to our eternal benefit.
Another aspect of the work is shown in Daniel
Daniel 10:2-3, 10-13 - shows that the angels -
manipulate circumstances, v20-21
1 Timothy 6:15-16 - A principle which can and should be
Genesis 32:30 - what Jacob saw was a manifestation of
God – true of others as it is of angels, 1 John 1:1-2.
What God is, He has made His angelic children. Exodus
33:17-23. God is again showing Himself through an intermediary.
Genesis 18:17-22 - shows an angel revealing God.
Genesis 22:11-15 - the angel speaks in the name of
Yahweh as a promise.
Where did the angels come from?
Genesis 3:22 tells us something of their origin. The
angels have also been put in circumstances of trial. Before their immortality
they were put to the test. But now they are beyond the power of death, Luke
2 Peter 2:4 - these cannot be “the spirit
beings, the angels of God”, as God’s angels are deathless, they
cannot sin. There is an allusion to the mythology of Tartarus - a comparison
with Numbers 16 shows it very likely to be Korah, Dathan and Abiram who by an
earthquake were cast down alive into the pit, compare Jude 6.
Very shortly we will meet our angel, Matthew