Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares. (Heb 13:2) Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation? (Hebrews 1:14)
“Angel” in singular and plural forms occurs about 300 times in the Bible. They are God-created beings that figure large in parts of the Bible. They are organized into groups and hierarchies with leaders. Satan and his followers are angels that rebelled against the authority of God and fell from their place in God’s angel kingdom. Thus, they are “fallen angels.”
Note these verses: And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. (Rev 12:7-9)
It will take more than one day to examine our theme of Strangers and Angels because angels are a big Bible subject. Also, some good writing has been done about Angels and I would like to include some samples here. (You know that I’m prejudiced toward McGee because he is so down-to-earth in his comments.)
The above picture is famous. A German artist, Bernhard Plockhorst, painted it in 1886. His story is interesting and he painted several other Bible-theme works. If this link works, you can read about it here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bernhard_Plockhorst
There’s a lot of talk these days about angels but most people have never personally seen an angel, to their knowledge. A close look at the first verse above gives a hint as to why we may not know if we have seen an angel. They don’t always look like the pictures drawn by artists with wings and other-world appearance. Angel simply means “messenger.” Pastors in Revelation (Rev.1:20) were called “angel” and yet they were very much human.
But there is that heavenly messenger that shows up looking every bit like a human being. Jacob wrestled with an angel, which put his hip out of joint and caused him to limp the rest of his life (Gen.32:24-30). An angel of the Lord killed 185,000 Assyrian soldiers in one night (2Kings 19:35). So, if you are in a tight place and call on the Lord to help you, it wouldn’t be unreasonable that the Lord should send an angel to help you. But don’t expect him to hang around for supper, although that has been done too. I would not pray to angels for their help. Pray to God and let Him send an angel if that’s what ought to be done.
“All the angels, even those of the highest order, are employed by their Creator to serve those who believe in Christ Jesus. What these services are, and how performed, it would be impossible to state. Much has been written on the subject, partly founded on Scripture, and partly on conjecture. They are, no doubt, constantly employed in averting evil and procuring good. If God helps man by man, we need not wonder that he helps man by angels.
We know that he needs none of those helps, for he can do all things himself; yet it seems agreeable to his infinite wisdom and goodness to use them. This is part of the economy of God in the government of the world and of the Church; and a part, no doubt, essential to the harmony and perfection of the whole.” (Adam Clarke: a British Methodist theologian and biblical scholar; died 1832.)
I believe angels have been active in our area of Sand Mountain, Alabama for several years. A retired Southern Baptist pastor whom I personally have known for almost thirty years, shared one of his personal stories while we were visiting at a funeral home. His daughter was putting gas in her car at a service station where we have bought gasoline many times. A big car pulled up a few feet away. One of the men in the car jumped out and grabbed her and was dragging her toward his car.
Just as quickly, a truck pulled up and a man jumped out of the truck. With one mighty blow, he put the big man on his back on the concrete and shoved the pastor’s daughter toward her car. “Go!” He said. She got into her car and started the engine. As she looked back, the big man that had been dragging her was getting back into his car and the car sped away. The man who had rescued her was nowhere to be seen, nor his truck.”
This same pastor had previously felt compelled to pick up a hitch-hiker. He witnessed to him and the man replied that he knew the Lord and that Jesus was coming soon. Soon, the man wanted to get out of the car, although there were no houses or other roads. He let him out of the car and looked into the rearview mirror as he pulled away. Nothing. He stopped the car and got out and looked all around and the man had disappeared.
Since I have lived in Flat Rock, stories have spread through the community about two women in Chattanooga who picked up a hitch hiker (against their better judgment). They drove toward Cleveland and talked a few minutes. Suddenly, the man disappeared out of their car. He had told the ladies that the Lord is coming soon. In the same period a highway patrolman went forward in his church on a Sunday morning and asked permission to give his testimony.
He had approached a big-rig on the side of the road and the two drivers were looking all around the truck for something. He stopped and they told him: “You’ll never believe this…” they had picked up a hitch hiker and after talking to them about the Lord, he had disappeared out of the truck. They were looking for him.
This same story with some variation was spread throughout this area and then no more stories. Yes, although some of the stories may have been embellished or changed with the telling of them, I believe an angel was troubling the waters in this area. Some have entertained angels, unawares. (Hebrews 1:14). Ω
Read Through the Bible in a Year
MARCH 29, 2017 – WEDNESDAY
A.M. Josh: 23-24 P.M. Luke: 6:27-49
(Bible Gateway will read this to you if you like. Look for the speaker icon.)
Memory Verse This Month:
Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer. (Psa 19:14)
Song for Today:
Softly and Tenderly Jesus is Calling(3:27) – (Male Trio) (Calvary Mem.Church – S.Pines, NC)
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