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Monday, May 14, 2012

Do Angels Exist?

I'm often asked whether or not I believe in angels, and often the inference behind the question is the same as if I was being asked whether or not I believe in fairies. However, whilst the existence of fairies belongs to myth and legend without doubt, the existence of angels is biblically sound.

This is what the Bible Says:

  • They don't marry or die (Luke 20:35-36).
  • Angels are involved in revealing the law (Acts 7:38), bringing messages from God (Zechariah 1:14-17), praising God (Hebrews 1:6; Revelation 5:11-12), and protecting his people (Daniel 6:22; Acts 12:7-10).
  • Some angels rebelled against God (2 Peter 2:4). Those angels, of whom Satan is chief, work through false teachers (2 Thessalonians 2:9-10; 1 Timothy 4:1-2), attempt to separate believers from God (Romans 8:38-39), and tempt us to sin (1 Peter 5:8).

In Colossians 2:18-19, the apostle Paul actually warns us against being on the lookout for angels with the advice: "Do not let anyone who delights in false humility and the worship of angels disqualify you for the prize. Such a person goes into great detail about what he has seen, and his unspiritual mind puffs him up with idle notions. He has lost connection with the Head."
The Bible  never teaches us that we should study angels or even look out actively for their appearance. Even in Hebrews 13:2, which says that by entertaining strangers some have entertained angels without knowing it, there's no admonition to be on the lookout for them.
As far as I am concerned, it is always made clear in the Bible when something is a story which is being used to illustrate a point and make it clearer to understand, and anything not in this category is true, whether we can understand and accept it or not. Simply because we find it difficult to accept something does not make it untrue.
There are so many examples of angelic visitations in the Bible. Much is written in Hebrews, Chapter 1 about them regarding the superiority of Christ over the angels. Hebrews 1:14 says: "Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?" Angels are spiritual beings created by God as His messengers, and totally under His authority. They have several functions:
  • Serving believers (Hebrews 1:14)
  • Protecting the helpless (Matthew 18:10)
  • Proclaiming God's messages (Revelation 14: 6-12)
  • Executing God's judgment (Acts 12: 1-23)
Do I believe in angels? I do because I believe that the bible is the breathed word of God, and therefore I believe what it contains. Angels are never referred to in the Bible as being anything other than factual, and that's good enough for me.

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