This is the second post in a mini-series on angels. The first post can be read here. I will recap the main teaching points from the first post below and then provide some new material and some interesting illustrations.
Who are angels?
Angels are created beings
Just like everything other than the Godhead, angels were created. Specifically, the Lord Jesus created them (Colossians 1:16; cf. Psalm 148.1-5). They didn’t evolve. There is no such thing as “angelic metamorphosis”.
Angels are personal beings
They have intellect, feelings and the ability to make decisions, obey commands, give instructions, and worship almighty God.
Angels are spirit beings
Hebrews 1:13–14 refers to angels as “ministering spirits”. They have no material body, at least not the kind we’re familiar with. But that doesn’t prevent them from appearing in visible form when God deems it necessary.
Angels are servant beings
Psalm 103:20–21 Bless the Lord, O you his angels, you mighty ones who do his word, obeying the voice of his word! Bless the Lord, all his hosts, his ministers, who do his will!
They were specifically sent to minister to Jesus (Matthew 4.11)
How did they minister to Jesus? The text doesn’t tell us, but we can use our sanctified imaginations and figure they probably brought food for His body. Undoubtedly they still worshiped Him as was their normal response to God the Son. Surely they offered words of encouragement.
They are specifically sent to minister to believers (Hebrews 1.14)
Rob Morgan is a personal friend of mine who pastors the Donelson Fellowship in Nashville, TN. He recently posted the following two stories in his journal (I read them here) that vividly demonstrate the potentiality of angels ministering to believers TODAY:
A Gideon worker named Don Gleaves was assigned to take a trip to the Ukraine, in 1994. Another local Gideon was taking Don to an area about three or four hours away. Out in the middle of nowhere their car broke down. It was the distributor cap that had broken apart. There was no way to put it back together. Don and the driver stood on the side of the road praying and a car passed them and pulled over. A man got out and walked back to them and without saying a word handed them a distributor cap. It fit perfectly. The man wouldn’t take any money; he just turned around and left.
James Forlines shared another story with Rob about two friends of his, Chris and Jackie Leggett, who are missionaries in Mauritania (a country in West Africa). They were going to a conference in Senegal (due south of Mauritania), and because of the congestion at the main border crossing, they took another route using largely deserted back roads through the Sahara.
They had been driving on this very rough, unmaintained road for many hours and hadn’t seen any other vehicle or person. Suddenly their front tire detached from the vehicle and went rolling down the road in front of them, and the vehicle came to a sudden stop. They retrieved the tire, but didn’t have a way of securing it back onto the car. They didn’t have any lug nuts. Jackie and the children got out of their car and began walking back down the road to try to find their missing lug nuts.
Suddenly a shiny black, very new-looking and very clean SUV passed them, stopped, reversed, and pulled alongside Chris. Jackie said this was odd for several reasons: They were in the poorest country in the world where no one could have afforded that kind of vehicle, and they had been on that road for hours without seeing any other vehicles and were out in the middle of no where, so where did this car come from?
Well, the man in the car asked Chris what the problem was, and when he told him, the man reached over and gave Chris five golden-colored lug nuts out of a bag full of them! Then he drove off. Jackie said, “Now who carries around a bag of lug nuts, much less gold-colored ones?”
I know of no biblical reason why both of these stories couldn’t be examples of angels being used by God to minister to the needs of His people. Here is a third and final story:
In 1944, the penniless wife of a pastor and evangelist in Switzerland, Susie Ware prayed, “God, I need five pounds of potatoes, two pounds of pastry flour, apples, pears, a cauliflower, carrots, veal cutlets for Saturday, and beef for Sunday.”
A few hours later, someone knocked on the door, and there was a young man carrying a basket, who said, “Mrs. Ware, I am bringing what you asked for.” It was precisely what she’d prayed for—down to the exact brand of pastry flour she wanted. The young man slipped away, and even though Rev. and Mrs. Ware watched at the window to their building, the man never exited. He just disappeared (Anderson, Joan Wester. Where Angels Walk, New York: Ballantine Books, 1992, pp. 60-62).
What are your thoughts? Feel free to “Leave a Comment” below!