Biblical Definition of Angels and Their Purpose

AngelWHAT ANGELS ARE

Created. Angels are not part of God and therefore are not eternal beings, although they will exist for eternity. They were created at some point. We know this because Ezra says, “You are the LORD, you have made the heavens…with all their hosts…You give life to all of them” (Nehemiah 9.6). God created angels and He gave them life.

Spiritual. Angels are spiritual beings, not physical ones. They are able to be in the presence of God the Father for this reason. According to Hebrews 1.14, all angels are “ministering spirits sent to serve those who would inherit salvation.”

Ordered. In Daniel 10.13, we find the angel Michael, who is identified as one of the “chief princes.” Also, there are different classifications of angels with, apparently, different jobs. These are cherubim (Genesis 3.24, Psalms 18.10, Isaiah 37.16, Ezekiel 10-11&41), who surround God; Seraphim (Isaiah 6) , who serve God in His presence; and the living creatures (Ezekiel 1.5-14, Revelations 4.6-8) who worship God day and night.

Guardians. The righteous will be protected from all sorts of evils and pestilences of the world by angels according to Psalms 91.

Powerful. In numerous places around the Bible it talks about the power of angels. It should be noted that angels are only powerful in accordance with how God created them. They are not to be worshiped for their power; rather God is to be worshiped for angels’ power. On such occurrence of an Angel’s power is Psalms 103, where it says, “Bless the LORD, you His angels, Mighty in strength, who  perform His word, Obeying the voice of His word!” (v. 20).

HOW GOD USES ANGELS

Reminders. The reality of angels takes faith. They are here among us doing God’s work and delivering His messages to mankind, but they are primarily unseen. God uses them as reminders, so that we may “fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal” (2 Corinthians 4.18).

Examples. Angels, save for the fallen, are far more obedient to God than any man. So far as we can tell, the faithful angels are in no need of grace; they live in complete submission to God. Sound familiar? Isn’t that how we are called to live? This similarity makes them great examples for us of righteousness.

Messengers and Gophers. Throughout the Bible, angels deliver messages and run ‘errands’ for God, going here to destroy a city and there to deliver a message. Ultimately, what they are doing is what they are told to do so that God’s plan will come to fruition.

For Glory. God uses angels to glorify Himself. Throughout the Bible, there are accounts of angels praising God and singing, “Holy, Holy, Holy” unto God. This along with their role in God’s plan are all part of their desire to bring glory to God.

Image Credits: yinney, scx.hu

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