We add the word angels to our list of Words of Life, not because it is a word used often in the Christian vocabulary but to know how to answer someone who may ask us about angels. We found enough to start another book but would rather you, the reader, find these gems for yourself and rejoice that although we cannot see them, angels are real to us as God’s children. I can relate times in my life when I knew the outcome of a situation had to be by the Almighty power of our Lord who uses His angels to minister to us. Faith believes and rejoices in the truth we find in His Word.
Old Testament H4397
Strong’s Concordance defines mal’ak mal·äk’, messenger, representative
When the same word is used for messenger, it refers to a human messenger sent by another person. When the word is used for ANGEL, it speaks of the angel of the Lord, or of God. A messenger was a representative of man; an angel was a representative of the Lord God.
The word angel or angels is used 108 times in the Old Testament. The first is found in Genesis 16:7 when the angel of the Lord found Hagar in the wilderness when she fled from Sarah. From the angel, she receives instructions to return in obedience to Sarah. The second time the angel appears to Hagar is when she and Ishmael are sent away; the angel assures her that the Lord is with her and Ishmael (Genesis 21:20).
Angels appear in Sodom to bring out Lot and his family (Genesis 19:15).
An angel appears to Abraham to instruct him not to harm Isaac after proving his fear and obedience to God (Genesis 22:11-12).
“What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him? For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour.” Psalm 8:4-5
“The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them.” Psalm 34:7
“For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.” Psalm 91:11
“Who maketh his angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire: Psalm 104:4
This is quoted in Hebrews 2.
Isaiah 63:9 speaks of the affliction of God’s people. The angel of his presence saved them: in his love and in his pity he redeemed them.
King Nebuchadnezzar acknowledges God who sent his angel and delivered his three servants that trusted in him (Daniel 3:28).
Daniel’s praise is to God who sent his angel and hath shut the lions’ mouths, (Daniel 6:22).
There are many references to Zechariah’s conversations with the angel of the Lord.
It is amazing to find so many references. Instead of listing all these, the link is here for the whole list.
New Testament G32
Strong’s Concordance aggelos ä’n-ge-los, messenger from God.
“In the Scriptures, both of the Old Testament and of the New Testament, one of that host of heavenly spirits that, according alike to Jewish and Christian opinion, wait upon the monarch of the universe, and are sent by him to earth,”
The first reference in the New Testament is Matthew 1:20 where the angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream instructing him “fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.” Two other times the angel instructed him: first, to take Mary and Jesus to Egypt to escape Herod; afterward, to bring them back to Israel.
Before Jesus’ birth, we have the reference to the appearance of Gabriel to Zacharias.
“And there appeared unto him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense. Luke 1:11
“And in the sixth month (of Elizabeth’s pregnancy) the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth,” Luke 1:26
From one angel to a multitude of the heavenly hosts came the announcement of Jesus’ birth (Luke 2:13).
Fast-forward to Jesus’ ministry and the promise of His second coming.
After Jesus’ temptation of the devil in the wilderness, angels came and ministered unto him (Matthew 4:11).
“Two angels in white were sitting where the body of Jesus had lain (John 20:12).
“He shall come in his own glory, and in his Father’s, and of the holy angels” (Luke 9:26).
Where do angels fit in relation to believers?
Luke 15:10 speaks of the joy of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth.
Luke 20:36 gives the promise that believers are equal unto the angels; and are the children of God, being the children of the resurrection.
The writer of Hebrews speaks of the angels’ ministry to us as believers.
“And of the angels he saith, Who maketh his angels spirits, and his ministers a flame of fire. Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation? Hebrews 1:7,14
“And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried;” Luke 16:22
1 Peter 1:12 speaks of the gospel being preached here on earth by the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into.
Hebrews 12:22 speaks of mount Sion, the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels,
“Know ye not that we shall judge angels?” 1 Corinthians 6:3
The Book of Acts has many references to angels ministering to the apostles.
The angel of the Lord by night opened the prison doors for the apostles (Acts 5:19).
The Lord sent his angel and delivered Peter out of the hand of Herod (Acts 12:11).
Paul speaks of the angel of God that stood by him on the ship that was about to be capsized (Acts 27:23).
How do angels relate to unbelievers?
The angel of the Lord smote Herod in his royal apparel, because he gave not God the glory (Acts 12:23).
“Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:” Matthew 25:41
Of the 175 references of the New Testament, 72 are found in the Book of Revelation.
The first is relative to the angel sent to John by Jesus Christ to testify to the churches.
“The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John:” Revelation 1:1
In Daniel 10:13, Michael is spoken of by Daniel as one of the chief princes who came to help him.
Have you experienced an incident where you knew God had physically intervened?
Gracious Father, thank you for all the times we can look back and know that your mighty hand was upon us. We praise you for the promises of your presence always with us, even as in times past, we cannot miss the reality of your angels ministering to us. In Jesus’ name, we thank you and praise you. Amen.
(This word comes right after a sermon I heard yesterday including Zacharias’ encounter with Gabriel. Here is the link.)