[CF Devotionals] 2003-05-25 - Angels

The Doctrine of Angels Part 3 ~ Ministry

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  1. The Classification of Angels (Cont'd)

    1. The Ministry of Angels

      In this last section I want to focus on the role of angels in our lives. There are other aspects to their ministries: their service of God, their part in the work of Christ on earth, etc. But these you will have to study on your own. There is one other aspect to the role of angels which we won’t go into here, and that is their involvement serving the Lord in His judgment. In the past, this was seen in the destruction of Sodom. In the future they will be occupied with God’s final judgment. The area of involvement of angels with humanity has been the subject of numerous books. Frank Peretti’s come to mind. Most of these are biblically unsound. They can actually create problems with those who are superstitious in their approach to angels, demons and spiritual warfare. And we are all aware of the obsession of "New Age" thinkers about angels. As one reads the related books, one can come to the conclusion they are talking to fallen angels.

      1. Angels reveal God’s will to men.

        "Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing at the right side of the altar of incense. When Zechariah saw him, he was startled and was gripped with fear. But the angel said to him: 'Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to give him the name John'" (Luke 1:11-13).

      2. They minister to the Saints.

        "Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?" (Hebrews 1:14) 8

      3. They encourage believers

        "Last night an angel of the God, whose I am and whom I serve, stood beside me and said, ‘Do not be afraid, Paul. You must stand trial before Caesar; and God has graciously given you the lives of all who sail with you.’" (Acts 27:23-24).

      4. They care for the wellbeing of believers.

        "The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear him, and he delivers them" (Psalm 34:7).

        "For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways" (Psalm 91:11).

        "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" (Matthew 18:10).

        The warning when discussing angels is to avoid going beyond what is said by scripture. At the same time, we need to remember that in the midst of spiritual warfare, God’s messengers, His angels, are involved and are available to minister to us as he directs.

        Let me end as I began, with an illustration for Billy Graham’s book. "It was a tragic night in a Chinese city. Bandits had surrounded the mission compound sheltering hundreds of women and children. On the previous night, the missionary, Miss Monsen, had been put to bed with a bad attack of malaria, and how the tempter harassed her with the questions: 'What will you do when the looters come here? When firing begins on this compound, what about those promises you have been trusting? In his book, 1000 New Illustrations (Zondervan, 1960), Al Bryant records the result. Miss Monsen prayed, 'Lord, I have been teaching these young people all these years that thy promises are true, and if they fail now, my mouth shall be forever closed; I must go home.' Throughout the next night she was up, ministering to frightened refugees, encouraging them to pray and to trust God to deliver them. Through fearful things happened all around, the bandits left the mission compound untouched.

        In the morning, people from three different neighborhood families asked Miss Monsen, 'Who were those four people, three sitting and one standing, quietly watching from the top of your house all night long?' When she told them that no one had been on the housetop, they refused to believe her, saying, 'We saw them with our own eyes! She then told them that God still sent angels to guard his children in their hour of danger." 9

        1. Ibid
        2. Graham, p. 168-169.

Look for more on Angels next week.

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CFD | May 2003 | Geoff's Devotions | Geoff's Studies | Angels Study | Devotional Topics