While I am no angelologist (yes, there is such a thing), I was thinking of angels over the past couple of days and their relation to Christmas. They are sung of often in Christmas Carols like “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing” and “Angels We Have Heard On High.” They feature in all the best Christmas token paintings of mangers.
But what do we really know about angels and what are some misnomers?
There is so much to actually learn about these awesome beings. Entire books are written on the subject. I do not intend to go deep into it. Instead, I thought I would present some fun facts and also bring up the most popular misnomers!
The subject of angels intrigues me. It would appear they have existed before humanity and the creation of the heavens and the earth. Angels are mentioned all throughout the stages of the life of Christ.
An angel appeared in visible form before the Immaculate Conception. Angels appeared at the birth of Christ. They also comforted Christ in Gethsemane, before He took sin upon Himself and was separated from God and His entire heavenly host. They profess His resurrection, too. A careful look into the Second Coming will reveal they will accompany Him then as well, which is no surprise at all.
How much do you know about these most fascinating beings?
Did you know:
- They are real? The best way I have heard it explained is that just as there are single-cell creatures and creatures with increasing complexity all the way up to humanity, there are beings with increasing complexity from humans on up to the Creator Himself.
- The angels were tested by God? It might be a surprise to know that angels have free will. When God ordained them to worship the Christ, some refused, like Lucifer.
- Angels are depicted wrong in the arts? It’s true! Angels aren’t midgets or pale, pasty punies. They aren’t naked babies. They don’t even have wings (except for the cherubim and seraphim who have a set of six wings)! They are spiritual beings without any matter. The great mystery is that they are able to take on physical form if they choose, generally in the form of a man. Keep in mind that angels are fear-inspiring beings and at the sight of them men have cowered.
- People do not become angels when they die? Angelic beings are purely spiritual. People possess a body, a soul and a spirit. When we die, we lose our body and gain a new, immortal one. We do not change into different entities or creatures or beings.
- Angels could be considered quantum beings? This is because they can move (technically, they don’t even move, because this would confine them to the law of physics) or pass from point to point without interference. This would mean like passing through walls and windows and barriers or leaving Bethlehem and a second later arriving in Jerusalem. Having said that, angels are localized beings and can only be in one place at a time.
- Angels are divided into hierarchies and choirs? To be exact, there are three levels of hierarchies with three divisions, or choirs, in each. This would include cherubim, seraphim and archangels.
- Every specific angel is its own specific and unique species? This fact is a difficult one to comprehend. But it can make sense if you consider that angels do not reproduce so there is no relevance to having a suitable partner or any two-of-a-kind in the angelic realm.
- God created a guardian angel special for each one of us? This is my favorite fun fact about angels! Even before I came into existence, God had me on His mind! He made a special angel to accompany me throughout my life. This angel will usher me into the presence of YHWH when I die and I will instantly be aware that I have been intimately acquainted with this being all my life!
Because Angels are mentioned at least 108 times in the Old Testament and 165 times in the New Testament, there is much we can deduct about angels from the Bible. These fascinating beings were created all at the same time. Isn’t it wonderful to know you are never alone? Hebrews 1:14 says, “Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?”
Through the history of humanity, they have served us. Here is a list of various ways we can observe them helping us in the Bible. They deliver messages, they guide, they provide. Angels protect and deliver and strengthen and encourage. Angels comfort us. They also will carry us to Jesus when we die. To understand the diversity of their duties to God, they even execute, destroy, annihilate and punish!
Before Adam and Eve existed, the angels were in the heavens ministering to God and worshiping Him and praising Him. They are there around His throne this very second. They are everywhere. Myriads and myriads. And one day the great mystery surrounding angels will become clear.
Jori Sams is a Christian author and freelance writer with nearly 2000 published pieces on the Internet, with over 1500 being published by Yahoo. Her books are published through Writeious Books. When she isn’t writing, you can usually find her following the sun…