Anglican Morning Devotion for 6 April 2022 Anno Domini
a ministry of the Anglican Orthodox Communion Worldwide
“Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven.” (Matthew 18:9-10; all scripture quoted is from the King James Version)
“I will therefore put you in remembrance, though ye once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed them that believed not. 6And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day.” (Jude 1:5-6)
The subject of the study of Angels (Angelology) has become quite controversial in the modern age, and may have been even back to the time of the early Church Fathers. But today there is a view that has arisen that borders on idolatry concerning the personal attributes and nature of angels. There are a number of books of recent decades that tend to place angels at the disposal of men and women rather than a reliance upon the Maker of Angelic beings – God Almighty. One such book is presented as an example: Angels in Waiting – How to Reach out to your Guardian Angel, advertised on Amazon. Another of several years ago was entitled, How to Please your Angel. Not only do the views expressed in such cheapened literature demean the nature of angels, but also of God.
Do not misunderstand me, angels are powerful beings imbued with the power granted by God to execute His will. But angels do not act out of their own volition, but at the will and command of God. One point should be made up front: it is entirely unbiblical to worship angels or to pray to them. “Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind.” (Colossians 2:18), and, “And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which shewed me these things. 9Then saith he unto me, See thou do it not: for I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book: worship God.” (Revelations 22:8-9)
The Bible refers to angels in different distinctions. For example, the Angel of the Lord most often refers to God Himself. When the Angel of the Lord is mentioned, it most often refers to the pre-Incarnate Person of the Lord Jesus Christ. Hagar was twice found by the Angel of the Lord to whom she called God. “And the angel of the LORD found her by a fountain of water in the wilderness, by the fountain in the way to Shur. . . . And she called the name of the LORD that spake unto her, Thou God seest me: for she said, Have I also here looked after him that seeth me? Wherefore the well was called Beerlahairoi.” (Genesis 16:7, 13-14), and, on her expulsion from the household of Abraham, “And God heard the voice of the lad; and the angel of God called to Hagar out of heaven.” (Genesis 21:17)
The Lord appeared to Abraham in the form of a man on the Plains of Mamre: “And the LORD appeared unto him in the plains of Mamre: and he sat in the tent door in the heat of the day; 2And he lift up his eyes and looked, and, lo, three men stood by him: and when he saw them, he ran to meet them from the tent door, and bowed himself toward the ground, 3And said, My Lord, if now I have found favour in thy sight, pass not away, I pray thee, from thy servant.” (Gen 18:1-3) Only God is worshipped, and Abraham bowed the knee to this personification of God, in the form of man, and called Him Lord. Only the Lord God is worthy of reverence and worship. Again, after restraining Abraham from sacrificing Isaac, the Lord spoke to Abraham: “And the angel of the LORD called unto Abraham out of heaven the second time, 16And said, By myself have I sworn, saith the LORD, for because thou hast done this thing, and hast not withheld thy son, thine only son.” (Genesis 22:15-16) The Angel of the Lord seems to be a spiritual manifestation of the Lord in every case mentioned.
The Lord also appeared to Joshua over against the walls of Jericho as the Captain of the Hosts of the Lord: “And it came to pass, when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and, behold, there stood a man over against him with his sword drawn in his hand: and Joshua went unto him, and said unto him, Art thou for us, or for our adversaries? 14And he said, Nay; but as captain of the host of the LORD am I now come. And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and did worship, and said unto him, What saith my lord unto his servant?” (Joshusa 5:13-14) Notice that Joshua worshipped this Person and called Him Lord.
The Angel of the Lord is not a created being such as the multitude of angels in Heaven but is God Himself. The created beings called angels are not to be worshipped. Only two Angels are mentioned in the Bible – Michael and Gabriel – both Archangels of high degree. There are other angels who rebelled with Lucifer against God and were cast down with him as demons. Try every spirit to know if of God or some other.