Theology 101: Angels and Our Relationship to Them

Angels are created, spiritual beings with moral judgment and high intelligence, but without physical bodies (1).

The Bible makes it clear that these heavenly creatures take a particular interest in us.  Apostle Peter tells us in 1 Peter 1:10-12 that there are  “things into which angels long to look,” things that have to do with the grace and manner in which God provides salvation to humans.  This is a fascinating process for them, as they are unable to experience  redemption first hand which involves the greatest event in the universe, the death and resurrection of Christ.

The writer to the Hebrews makes a powerful statement about angels joining us in spiritual worship when he states that we “have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to innumerable angels in festal gathering, and to the assembly of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God…”

The Bible also tells that angels can take human form and interact with us.  “Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares” Hebrews 13:2. This verse encourages us to minister to others who may truly be “angels” of whom we are “unaware.”

Scripture also makes it clear that angels can convey physical protection for us.  An angel send by God shut the mouth of the lions in the den where Daniel was thrown. An angel delivered Peter from prison. Angels also came and ministered to Jesus after His temptation.

When we find ourselves in life and death situations and suddenly find that we are able to make it out untouched, we can certainly consider that an angel send by God perhaps rescued us.  When you avoided that car accident in a miraculous way, or something made you turn around to catch your baby just in the nick of time, that may have been God ministering to you via an invisible angel…

There is strong biblical support for this. “For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways. On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.” Psalm 91:11-12

And then there is one of my favorite verses about the relationship between children and angels: “See that you do not look down on one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven.”  I find the phrase “their angels” fascinating.  It results that children have angels assigned to them, and these creatures are continually also in the presence of God.

These concepts on the doctrine about angels as well as the verses supporting them can serve as great comfort for believers, knowing that God uses such means to protect us and our loved ones.

(1) Grudem, Wayne 1994; Systematic Theology; pp. 405-406

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