August 13, 2022

“Every time a bell rings, an angel gets its wings.” This famous quote from It’s a Wonderful Life is catchy, but is it true? Here are 50 Biblically Accurate Facts About Angels in the Bible. The last one will shock you, so make sure to read to the end!

1. Angels exist.

The Bible is clear. Angels exist, and they show up at some of the most important times in God’s plan of salvation. The Bible informs us about them to give Christians comfort and confidence. Both the Old Testament and the New Testament tell us about the existence of angels.

The Lord, the God of heaven, who took me from my father’s house and from the land of my kindred, and who spoke to me and swore to me, ‘To your offspring I will give this land,’ he will send his angel before you, and you shall take a wife for my son from there. (Genesis 24:7 ESV)

You shall not fall in with the many to do evil, nor shall you bear witness in a lawsuit, siding with the many, so as to pervert justice, (Exodus 23:2 ESV)

And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. (Luke 1:30 ESV)

2. Angels were created by God.

The Word of God says that the heavenly host, another word for all the angels, is part of His good creation. The Apostle Paul says in Colossians 1:17 (ESV) that by God, “all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible.” Nehemiah 9:6 says that God made “the heaven of heavens, with all their host” (ESV).

And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. (Colossians 1:17 ESV)

“You are the Lord, you alone. You have made heaven, the heaven of heavens, with all their host, the earth and all that is on it, the seas and all that is in them; and you preserve all of them; and the host of heaven worships you. (Nehemiah 9:6 ESV)

3. We don’t know when angelic beings were created.

Genesis does not say explicitly when spiritual beings were created. Job 38:4-7 (ESV) says that “the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy” when God laid the “foundation of the earth,” leading some Christians to believe that angels were created before the third day of creation recorded in Genesis 1:9. What is clear is that they were created at some point in the six days of creation.

Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. And on the seventh day God finished his work that he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all his work that he had done. So God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it God rested from all his work that he had done in creation. (Genesis 2:1-3 ESV)

For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy. (Exodus 20:11 ESV)

All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. (John 1:3 ESV)

4. Human beings do not become angels when they die.

Many believe that human beings become heavenly beings when they die, but the Bible teaches they are distinct (Psalm 8:5 ESV). The false belief may come from a misunderstanding of Mark 12:25, which says that in the resurrection, people will be “like angels in heaven” (ESV). Jesus’ parable of Lazarus maintains a distinction between humans and angels after death (Luke 16:19-31 ESV).

Yet you have made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor. (Psalm 8:5 ESV)

“There was a rich man who was clothed in purple and fine linen and who feasted sumptuously every day. And at his gate was laid a poor man named Lazarus, covered with sores, who desired to be fed with what fell from the rich man’s table. Moreover, even the dogs came and licked his sores. The poor man died and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried, and in Hades, being in torment, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham far off and Lazarus at his side. And he called out, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus to dip the end of his finger in water and cool my tongue, for I am in anguish in this flame.’ But Abraham said, ‘Child, remember that you in your lifetime received your good things, and Lazarus in like manner bad things; but now he is comforted here, and you are in anguish. And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been fixed, in order that those who would pass from here to you may not be able, and none may cross from there to us.’ And he said, ‘Then I beg you, father, to send him to my father’s house— for I have five brothers—so that he may warn them, lest they also come into this place of torment.’ But Abraham said, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them hear them.’ And he said, ‘No, father Abraham, but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ He said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the Prophets, neither will they be convinced if someone should rise from the dead.’” (Luke 16:19-31 ESV)

5. Angels do not marry.

The testimony of Jesus is that the angels do not marry, although He doesn’t say why. The Apostle Paul may give us a hint when he says that a married man is “anxious about worldly things” and that his “interests are divided” (1 Corinthians 7:33, 34 ESV). Remaining unmarried would align with angels’ important roles as servants of God.

For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven. (Matthew 22:30 ESV)

For when they rise from the dead, they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven. (Mark 12:25 ESV)

but those who are considered worthy to attain to that age and to the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage, (Luke 20:35 ESV)

6. There are both good angels and fallen angels.

When people speak of angels, they usually mean the good angels that serve God. But, even though they were created good, some rebelled against God and became evil angels. They are commonly known as demons or devils. The Devil is chief among the fallen angels.

Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. (1 Peter 5:8 ESV)

For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to chains of gloomy darkness to be kept until the judgment; (2 Peter 2:4 ESV)

And he went throughout all Galilee, preaching in their synagogues and casting out demons. (Mark 1:39 ESV)

7. Both God’s angels and the demons will remain in their current state.

The number of God’s angels and the demons are fixed. The demons do not have the opportunity to repent but instead are kept in “chains of gloomy darkness to be kept until the judgment” (2 Peter 2:4 ESV). On the other hand, Jesus says that God’s angels “always see the face of my Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 18:10 ESV).

For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to chains of gloomy darkness to be kept until the judgment; (2 Peter 2:4 ESV)

“See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that in heaven their angels always see the face of my Father who is in heaven. (Matthew 18:10 ESV)

8. Angels are spirits.

Angels are spirit beings. This means that they do not have bodies. The theological term for this is that they are incorporeal.

And to which of the angels has he ever said,
“Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet”?
Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation? (Hebrews 1:13-14 ESV)

but they urged him strongly, saying, “Stay with us, for it is toward evening and the day is now far spent.” So he went in to stay with them. (Luke 24:29 ESV)

9. Nevertheless, angels appear in human form.

Even though angels do not have bodies, they sometimes appear in human form when delivering messages to human beings. This does not mean that they are actually humans. However, when they are in the form of humans, their angelic nature can be so obscured that they may not even be identified as angels. Because of this, the writer of Hebrews encourages Christians to show hospitality to strangers because they might be entertaining angels (Hebrews 13:2)!

And behold, there was a great earthquake, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow. And for fear of him the guards trembled and became like dead men. (Matthew 28:2-4) 

Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares. (Hebrews 13:2 ESV)

The two angels came to Sodom in the evening, and Lot was sitting in the gate of Sodom. When Lot saw them, he rose to meet them and bowed himself with his face to the earth and said, “My lords, please turn aside to your servant’s house and spend the night and wash your feet. Then you may rise up early and go on your way.” They said, “No; we will spend the night in the town square.” But he pressed them strongly; so they turned aside to him and entered his house. And he made them a feast and baked unleavened bread, and they ate.

But before they lay down, the men of the city, the men of Sodom, both young and old, all the people to the last man, surrounded the house. And they called to Lot, “Where are the men who came to you tonight? Bring them out to us, that we may know them.” Lot went out to the men at the entrance, shut the door after him, and said, “I beg you, my brothers, do not act so wickedly. Behold, I have two daughters who have not known any man. Let me bring them out to you, and do to them as you please. Only do nothing to these men, for they have come under the shelter of my roof.” But they said, “Stand back!” And they said, “This fellow came to sojourn, and he has become the judge! Now we will deal worse with you than with them.” Then they pressed hard against the man Lot, and drew near to break the door down. But the men reached out their hands and brought Lot into the house with them and shut the door. And they struck with blindness the men who were at the entrance of the house, both small and great, so that they wore themselves out groping for the door.

Then the men said to Lot, “Have you anyone else here? Sons-in-law, sons, daughters, or anyone you have in the city, bring them out of the place. For we are about to destroy this place, because the outcry against its people has become great before the Lord, and the Lord has sent us to destroy it.” So Lot went out and said to his sons-in-law, who were to marry his daughters, “Up! Get out of this place, for the Lord is about to destroy the city.” But he seemed to his sons-in-law to be jesting.

As morning dawned, the angels urged Lot, saying, “Up! Take your wife and your two daughters who are here, lest you be swept away in the punishment of the city.” But he lingered. So the men seized him and his wife and his two daughters by the hand, the Lord being merciful to him, and they brought him out and set him outside the city. And as they brought them out, one said, “Escape for your life. Do not look back or stop anywhere in the valley. Escape to the hills, lest you be swept away.” And Lot said to them, “Oh, no, my lords. Behold, your servant has found favor in your sight, and you have shown me great kindness in saving my life. But I cannot escape to the hills, lest the disaster overtake me and I die. Behold, this city is near enough to flee to, and it is a little one. Let me escape there—is it not a little one?—and my life will be saved!” He said to him, “Behold, I grant you this favor also, that I will not overthrow the city of which you have spoken. Escape there quickly, for I can do nothing till you arrive there.” Therefore the name of the city was called Zoar. (Genesis 19:1-22 ESV)

10. The holy angels are blameless.

The moral perfection of the angels is conveyed by the Bible by frequently calling them “holy” or “holy ones.” They are even held up as an example of being blameless. The holy angels have no sin.

And Achish answered David and said, “I know that you are as blameless in my sight as an angel of God. Nevertheless, the commanders of the Philistines have said, ‘He shall not go up with us to the battle.’ (1 Samuel 29:9 ESV)

“Call now; is there anyone who will answer you?
    To which of the holy ones will you turn? (Job 5:1 ESV)

For whoever is ashamed of me and of my words, of him will the Son of Man be ashamed when he comes in his glory and the glory of the Father and of the holy angels. (Luke 9:26 ESV)

11. Angels serve God.

Angels are ministering spirits that do God’s will. In the Book of Revelation, an angel even called himself a “fellow servant” along with its author John, the prophets, and all those we read and obey the book (Revelation 22:9 ESV).

Bless the Lord, O you his angels,
    you mighty ones who do his word,
    obeying the voice of his word! (Psalm 103:20 ESV)

Of the angels he says, “He makes his angels winds, and his ministers a flame of fire.” (Hebrew 1:7 ESV)

but he said to me, “You must not do that! I am a fellow servant with you and your brothers the prophets, and with those who keep the words of this book. Worship God.” (Revelation 22:9 ESV)

12. Angels are God’s messengers.

Angels primarily serve as messengers of God. “Messenger” is what the Hebrew word (Malach) and the Greek word (Angelos) for angel literally translate to. The service of angels centers on God’s Word.

Also Read:  What Does The Psalm 23 Imply?

Then the angel of God said to me in the dream, ‘Jacob,’ and I said, ‘Here I am!’ (Genesis 31:11 ESV)

Now when they had departed, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, “Rise, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there until I tell you, for Herod is about to search for the child, to destroy him.” (Matthew 2:13 ESV)

For this very night there stood before me an angel of the God to whom I belong and whom I worship, and he said, ‘Do not be afraid, Paul; you must stand before Caesar. And behold, God has granted you all those who sail with you.’ (Acts 27:23-24 ESV)

13. Angels are agents of God’s wrath.

Despite today’s viewpoint that angels are peaceful and even harmless, the picture in the Bible is different. God uses angels to execute His wrath or warn of His judgment.

He drove out the man, and at the east of the garden of Eden he placed the cherubim and a flaming sword that turned every way to guard the way to the tree of life. (Genesis 3:24 ESV)

The two angels came to Sodom in the evening, and Lot was sitting in the gate of Sodom. When Lot saw them, he rose to meet them and bowed himself with his face to the earth…

And they struck with blindness the men who were at the entrance of the house, both small and great, so that they wore themselves out groping for the door.

Then the men said to Lot, “Have you anyone else here? Sons-in-law, sons, daughters, or anyone you have in the city, bring them out of the place. For we are about to destroy this place, because the outcry against its people has become great before the Lord, and the Lord has sent us to destroy it.” (Genesis 19:1, 11-13 ESV)

But God’s anger was kindled because he went, and the angel of the Lord took his stand in the way as his adversary. Now he was riding on the donkey, and his two servants were with him. And the donkey saw the angel of the Lord standing in the road, with a drawn sword in his hand. And the donkey turned aside out of the road and went into the field. And Balaam struck the donkey, to turn her into the road. (Numbers 22:22-23 ESV)

14. Angels are agents of God’s mercy.

The good news is that even though angels are agents of God’s wrath, they are also agents of His mercy. An angel in the presence of God’s throne proclaimed forgiveness to Isaiah, and angels announced the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ.

And he touched my mouth and said: “Behold, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away, and your sin atoned for.” (Isaiah 6:7 ESV)

And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. (Luke 2:10 ESV)

15. Angels serve humans and especially Christians.

God provides for people’s needs, especially the needs of Christians, through angels. The Bible tells us that they have provided such things as food and freedom from imprisonment.

And he lay down and slept under a broom tree. And behold, an angel touched him and said to him, “Arise and eat.” And he looked, and behold, there was at his head a cake baked on hot stones and a jar of water. And he ate and drank and lay down again. And the angel of the Lord came again a second time and touched him and said, “Arise and eat, for the journey is too great for you.” And he arose and ate and drank, and went in the strength of that food forty days and forty nights to Horeb, the mount of God. (1 Kings 19:5-8 ESV)

And behold, an angel of the Lord stood next to him, and a light shone in the cell. He struck Peter on the side and woke him, saying, “Get up quickly.” And the chains fell off his hands. And the angel said to him, “Dress yourself and put on your sandals.” And he did so. And he said to him, “Wrap your cloak around you and follow me.” And he went out and followed him. He did not know that what was being done by the angel was real, but thought he was seeing a vision. (Acts 12:7-9 ESV)

For he will command his angels concerning you
    to guard you in all your ways.
On their hands they will bear you up,
    lest you strike your foot against a stone. (Psalm 91:11-12 ESV)

16. Angels serve as guardians.

One way that angels serve humans is by guarding them. It is going a little too far to say that everyone has a guardian angel, one angel assigned to a person through his or her life. However, the Bible does say that they watch over us and protect us.

Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation? (Hebrews 1:14 ESV)

“See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that in heaven their angels always see the face of my Father who is in heaven. (Matthew 18:10 ESV)

For he will command his angels concerning you
    to guard you in all your ways.
On their hands they will bear you up,
    lest you strike your foot against a stone. (Psalm 91:11-12 ESV)

17. Angels appear as men, but never as babies or women.

People often associate babies and women with angels because Medieval art portrayed them this way to convey their innocence. (Those Medieval artists probably needed a better-developed sense of the fallen nature of all humans, including women and children.) However, whenever angels appear in the form of humans in the Bible, they always appear as men.

The two angels came to Sodom in the evening, and Lot was sitting in the gate of Sodom. When Lot saw them, he rose to meet them and bowed himself with his face to the earth and said, “My lords, please turn aside to your servant’s house and spend the night and wash your feet. Then you may rise up early and go on your way.” They said, “No; we will spend the night in the town square.” (Genesis 19:1-2 ESV)

While they were perplexed about this, behold, two men stood by them in dazzling apparel. (Luke 24:4 ESV)

18. Some angels have swords.

As agents of God’s wrath, some angels appear with swords in the Bible.

He drove out the man, and at the east of the garden of Eden he placed the cherubim and a flaming sword that turned every way to guard the way to the tree of life. (Genesis 3:24 ESV)

But God’s anger was kindled because he went, and the angel of the Lord took his stand in the way as his adversary. Now he was riding on the donkey, and his two servants were with him. And the donkey saw the angel of the Lord standing in the road, with a drawn sword in his hand. And the donkey turned aside out of the road and went into the field. And Balaam struck the donkey, to turn her into the road. (Numbers 22:22-23 ESV)

And David lifted his eyes and saw the angel of the Lord standing between earth and heaven, and in his hand a drawn sword stretched out over Jerusalem. Then David and the elders, clothed in sackcloth, fell upon their faces. (1 Chronicles 21:16 ESV)

19. Some angels have wings, but not in the way you might think.

A common image people have of angels in their minds is of people with wings. The Bible never depicts them this way. The only angels that have wings in the Bible are clearly not in human form. Zechariah discusses two winged women, but their identity as angels is doubtful (Zechariah 5:9 ESV).

The cherubim shall spread out their wings above, overshadowing the mercy seat with their wings, their faces one to another; toward the mercy seat shall the faces of the cherubim be. (Exodus 25:20 ESV)

Above him stood the seraphim. Each had six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. (Isaiah 6:2 ESV)

20. Some angels have wheels.

One of the most vivid descriptions of angels comes from Ezekiel 1. In this vision, the angels he describes have wheels. Like swords, these wheels seem to convey their role as agents of judgment by evoking the wheel of a chariot or a wheel used to thresh grain. The link between angels, wheels, and judgment is strengthened by the appearance of the chariots of fire that surrounded the Syrian armies threatening Elisha (2 Kings 6:17 ESV).

Now as I looked at the living creatures, I saw a wheel on the earth beside the living creatures, one for each of the four of them. As for the appearance of the wheels and their construction: their appearance was like the gleaming of beryl. And the four had the same likeness, their appearance and construction being as it were a wheel within a wheel. When they went, they went in any of their four directions without turning as they went. And their rims were tall and awesome, and the rims of all four were full of eyes all around. And when the living creatures went, the wheels went beside them; and when the living creatures rose from the earth, the wheels rose. Wherever the spirit wanted to go, they went, and the wheels rose along with them, for the spirit of the living creatures was in the wheels. When those went, these went; and when those stood, these stood; and when those rose from the earth, the wheels rose along with them, for the spirit of the living creatures was in the wheels. (Ezekiel 1:15-21 ESV)

Then Elisha prayed and said, “O Lord, please open his eyes that he may see.” So the Lord opened the eyes of the young man, and he saw, and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha. (2 Kings 6:17 ESV)

21. Angels can discern between good and evil.

Angels are not machines without a will. Even though angels always obey the will of God, they discern between good and evil. They always choose the good.

Then Saul said to the people who were with him, “Count and see who has gone from us.” And when they had counted, behold, Jonathan and his armor-bearer were not there. (1 Samuel 14:17 ESV)

And Achish answered David and said, “I know that you are as blameless in my sight as an angel of God. Nevertheless, the commanders of the Philistines have said, ‘He shall not go up with us to the battle.’ (1 Samuel 29:9 ESV)

22. Angels have great knowledge.

Angels are not only held up as moral examples but also as examples of great knowledge. One of their roles is to impart knowledge and understanding to God’s people, for example, when they explained the significance of the empty tomb to the disciples.

Then Saul and all the people who were with him rallied and went into the battle. And behold, every Philistine’s sword was against his fellow, and there was very great confusion. (1 Samuel 14:20 ESV)

And as they were frightened and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, “Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but has risen. Remember how he told you, while he was still in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men and be crucified and on the third day rise.” (Luke 24:5-7 ESV)

23. The Bible tells us the names of two angels.

The names of most angels are not recorded in the Bible. However, the Archangel Michael and Gabriel are each mentioned by name.

The prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me twenty-one days, but Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, for I was left there with the kings of Persia, (Daniel 10:13 ESV)

But I will tell you what is inscribed in the book of truth: there is none who contends by my side against these except Michael, your prince. (Daniel 10:21 ESV)

But when the archangel Michael, contending with the devil, was disputing about the body of Moses, he did not presume to pronounce a blasphemous judgment, but said, “The Lord rebuke you.” (Jude 9 ESV)

And the angel answered him, “I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God, and I was sent to speak to you and to bring you this good news. (Luke 1:19 ESV)

24. Angels cannot die.

The immortality of the angels is implicit in the Old Testament. However, Jesus refers to the deathlessness of angels clearly when He compares the deathless state of the resurrected to the deathless state of the angels (Luke 20:36 ESV).

for they cannot die anymore, because they are equal to angels and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection. (Luke 20:36 ESV)

25. Angels have two ranks.

Some Christians interested in the study of angels have theorized many ranks of angels. The Bible only clearly describes two ranks: angels and archangels. Archangels are the higher rank of angels.

For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. (1 Thessalonians 4:16 ESV)

But when the archangel Michael, contending with the devil, was disputing about the body of Moses, he did not presume to pronounce a blasphemous judgment, but said, “The Lord rebuke you.” (Jude 9 ESV)

26. The Bible describes three kinds of angelic beings.

Three different types of angels are described in the Bible in relation to God’s throne. God is said to be enthroned above or upon the cherubim (1 Samuel 4:4 ESV). Seraphim, six-winged creatures, fly above the Lord’s throne (Isaiah 6:2-6 ESV). The Book of Revelation describes four living creatures who stand around God’s throne (4:6-9 ESV).

So the people sent to Shiloh and brought from there the ark of the covenant of the Lord of hosts, who is enthroned on the cherubim. And the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, were there with the ark of the covenant of God. (1 Samuel 4:4 ESV)

Above him stood the seraphim. Each had six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. And one called to another and said:

“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts;
the whole earth is full of his glory!”

And the foundations of the thresholds shook at the voice of him who called, and the house was filled with smoke. And I said: “Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts!”

Then one of the seraphim flew to me, having in his hand a burning coal that he had taken with tongs from the altar. (Isaiah 6:2-6 ESV)

and before the throne there was as it were a sea of glass, like crystal.

And around the throne, on each side of the throne, are four living creatures, full of eyes in front and behind: the first living creature like a lion, the second living creature like an ox, the third living creature with the face of a man, and the fourth living creature like an eagle in flight. And the four living creatures, each of them with six wings, are full of eyes all around and within, and day and night they never cease to say,

“Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord God Almighty,
    who was and is and is to come!”

And whenever the living creatures give glory and honor and thanks to him who is seated on the throne, who lives forever and ever, (Revelation 4:6-9 ESV)

27. Cherubim were on the Ark of the Covenant.

Given that cherubim guarded the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:24 ESV), depictions of them were often used to mark sacred space. One place we see this is on the lid of the Ark of the Covenant, which figures of two cherubim with wings extended towards each other.

Also Read:  The Candlestick Buying and selling Bible Evaluation

He drove out the man, and at the east of the garden of Eden he placed the cherubim and a flaming sword that turned every way to guard the way to the tree of life. (Genesis 3:24 ESV)

The cherubim shall spread out their wings above, overshadowing the mercy seat with their wings, their faces one to another; toward the mercy seat shall the faces of the cherubim be. (Exodus 25:20 ESV)

28. Cherubim adorned the curtains of the Tabernacle.

Embroidered depictions of cherubim adorned the curtains of the tabernacle as well as the veil that surrounded the most holy place. These were also embroidered on the curtain of the most holy place in the Temple that succeeded the tabernacle. What a statement when the death of Jesus caused that curtain to tear in two! No longer was man cut off from the presence of God by the guardianship of the cherubim.

“Moreover, you shall make the tabernacle with ten curtains of fine twined linen and blue and purple and scarlet yarns; you shall make them with cherubim skillfully worked into them. (Exodus 26:1 ESV)

“And you shall make a veil of blue and purple and scarlet yarns and fine twined linen. It shall be made with cherubim skillfully worked into it. (Exodus 26:31 ESV)

And he made the veil of blue and purple and crimson fabrics and fine linen, and he worked cherubim on it. (2 Chronicles 3:14 ESV)

And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice and yielded up his spirit.

And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. And the earth shook, and the rocks were split. (Matthew 27:50-51 ESV)

29. Carvings of cherubim adorned Solomon’s Temple.

Figures of cherubim stood in the Most Holy Place of Solomon’s Temple (1 Kings 6:23-28 ESV), and the Temple walls and doors had cherubim carved in them (1 Kings 6:29-35 ESV). Given that the death of Jesus eliminated the alienation between God and man, perhaps this is why He predicted that every stone of the Temple would be thrown down, even as His death caused the Temple curtain to be torn in two (Mark 13:2 ESV, Matthew 27:50-51 ESV).

In the inner sanctuary he made two cherubim of olivewood, each ten cubits high. Five cubits was the length of one wing of the cherub, and five cubits the length of the other wing of the cherub; it was ten cubits from the tip of one wing to the tip of the other. The other cherub also measured ten cubits; both cherubim had the same measure and the same form. The height of one cherub was ten cubits, and so was that of the other cherub. He put the cherubim in the innermost part of the house. And the wings of the cherubim were spread out so that a wing of one touched the one wall, and a wing of the other cherub touched the other wall; their other wings touched each other in the middle of the house. And he overlaid the cherubim with gold. (1 Kings 6:23-28 ESV)

Around all the walls of the house he carved engraved figures of cherubim and palm trees and open flowers, in the inner and outer rooms. The floor of the house he overlaid with gold in the inner and outer rooms.

For the entrance to the inner sanctuary he made doors of olivewood; the lintel and the doorposts were five-sided. He covered the two doors of olivewood with carvings of cherubim, palm trees, and open flowers. He overlaid them with gold and spread gold on the cherubim and on the palm trees.

So also he made for the entrance to the nave doorposts of olivewood, in the form of a square, and two doors of cypress wood. The two leaves of the one door were folding, and the two leaves of the other door were folding. On them he carved cherubim and palm trees and open flowers, and he overlaid them with gold evenly applied on the carved work. (1 Kings 6:29-35 ESV)

And Jesus said to him, “Do you see these great buildings? There will not be left here one stone upon another that will not be thrown down.” (Mark 13:2 ESV)

And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice and yielded up his spirit.

And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. And the earth shook, and the rocks were split. (Matthew 27:50-51 ESV)

30. Angels pray for us.

One way that angels serve humans is by praying for them. An angel prayed for Jerusalem in the time of Zechariah.

Then the angel of the Lord said, ‘O Lord of hosts, how long will you have no mercy on Jerusalem and the cities of Judah, against which you have been angry these seventy years?’ (Zechariah 1:12 ESV)

31. Christ is the head of the angels.

God always relates to the created world by means of His Word, His eternal Son who was incarnate as Jesus Christ. This includes the angels. Therefore, Christ is their head.

that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. And he put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church, (Ephesians 1:20-22 ESV)

who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, with angels, authorities, and powers having been subjected to him. (1 Peter 3:22 ESV)

And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. (Colossians 1:17 ESV)

32. Angels participate at key moments in Christ’s mission.

Because Christ is the head of the angels, they participate as messengers and ministers at key moments in Christ’s mission. The ministry of the angels is Christocentric, Christ-centered.

In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin’s name was Mary. And he came to her and said, “Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!” But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”

And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?”

And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy—the Son of God. And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. For nothing will be impossible with God.” And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her. (Luke 1:26-38 ESV)

While they were perplexed about this, behold, two men stood by them in dazzling apparel. And as they were frightened and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, “Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but has risen. Remember how he told you, while he was still in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men and be crucified and on the third day rise.” (Luke 24:4-7 ESV)

And while they were gazing into heaven as he went, behold, two men stood by them in white robes, and said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.” (Acts 1:10-11 ESV)

33. The angel Gabriel announced the birth of John the Baptist.

John the Baptist was the forerunner of Christ. The angel Gabriel announced his birth to his father, Zechariah.

And there appeared to him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense. And Zechariah was troubled when he saw him, and fear fell upon him. But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid, Zechariah, for your prayer has been heard, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John. And you will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth, for he will be great before the Lord. And he must not drink wine or strong drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother’s womb. And he will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord their God, and he will go before him in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready for the Lord a people prepared.”

And Zechariah said to the angel, “How shall I know this? For I am an old man, and my wife is advanced in years.” And the angel answered him, “I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God, and I was sent to speak to you and to bring you this good news. And behold, you will be silent and unable to speak until the day that these things take place, because you did not believe my words, which will be fulfilled in their time.” (Luke 1:11-20 ESV) 

34. The angel Gabriel announced the birth of Jesus.

God seems to use Gabriel to announce miraculous births. He announced to Mary that she would be the mother of the Messiah. Since God’s Word accomplishes what it announces, Christians have usually understood the moment of Gabriel’s announcement as the conception of Christ, and they call it the Annunciation.

so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth;
it shall not return to me empty,
but it shall accomplish that which I purpose,
and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it. (Isaiah 55:11 ESV)

In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin’s name was Mary. And he came to her and said, “Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!” But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”

And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?”

And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy—the Son of God. And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. For nothing will be impossible with God.” (Luke 1:26-37 ESV)

35. An angel instructed Joseph to flee with the Holy Family.

Herod considered the birth of the Messiah to be a threat to his dynasty. Because of this, he sought the newborn Jesus’ life. An angel warned Joseph in a dream to flee with Jesus and Mary to Egypt. This act also fulfilled the Old Testament prophecy.

 Now when they had departed, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, “Rise, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there until I tell you, for Herod is about to search for the child, to destroy him.” And he rose and took the child and his mother by night and departed to Egypt and remained there until the death of Herod. This was to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet, “Out of Egypt I called my son.” (Matthew 2:13-15 ESV)

When Israel was a child, I loved him,
and out of Egypt I called my son. (Hosea 11:1 ESV)

36. An angel instructed Joseph to return to Israel.

After Herod died, that threat no longer remained. An angel of God, therefore, instructed Joseph in a dream to return to the land of Israel.

But when Herod died, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt, (Matthew 2:19 ESV)

37. Angels ministered to Jesus in the wilderness.

After Jesus successfully resisted the chief evil angel, the Devil or Satan, in the wilderness, God’s angels ministered to Him. If Jesus himself accepted the ministry of the angels, how much more should we pray that the Lord minister to us by His angels!

Then the devil left him, and behold, angels came and were ministering to him. (Matthew 4:11 ESV)

38. Angels explained the significance of the empty tomb.

Even though Jesus told His disciples that He would rise from the dead in three days, they were still confused by the empty tomb. An angel helped them to understand why that tomb stood empty.

Also Read:  The Prayer For Sportsmen by Berton Braley

And behold, there was a great earthquake, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow. And for fear of him the guards trembled and became like dead men. But the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here, for he has risen, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and behold, he is going before you to Galilee; there you will see him. See, I have told you.” (Matthew 28:2-7 ESV)

While they were perplexed about this, behold, two men stood by them in dazzling apparel. And as they were frightened and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, “Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but has risen. Remember how he told you, while he was still in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men and be crucified and on the third day rise.” (Luke 24:4-7 ESV)

And entering the tomb, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, dressed in a white robe, and they were alarmed. And he said to them, “Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has risen; he is not here. See the place where they laid him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter that he is going before you to Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.” (Mark 16:5-7 ESV)

39. Angels explained the significance of Jesus’ Ascension.

Like His Resurrection, Jesus had told His disciples that He must return to the Father. Nonetheless, they were confused by His Ascension. The angels explained its significance to them and also promised His glorious return.

And while they were gazing into heaven as he went, behold, two men stood by them in white robes, and said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.” (Acts 1:10-11 ESV)

40. Angels interact with the physical world.

Even though angels do not have bodies, they still interact with the physical world. They ate food and rolled the stone away from the tomb. How they can interact with the world while not having bodies is a mystery of the faith.

The two angels came to Sodom in the evening, and Lot was sitting in the gate of Sodom. When Lot saw them, he rose to meet them and bowed himself with his face to the earth (Genesis 19:1 ESV)

And behold, there was a great earthquake, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow. (Matthew 28:2 ESV)

41. Angels are not omnipresent.

Even though angels do not have bodies, they are not omnipresent, present everywhere in the same way God is. The Scriptures indicate that their power is restricted to local places. In a dream, an angel says to Daniel, “The prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me twenty-one days, but Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, for I was left there with the kings of Persia” (Daniel 10:13 ESV), indicating that the power of angels, and of demons, is restricted to certain places. Also, the Devil is described as “leaving” Jesus.

The prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me twenty-one days, but Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, for I was left there with the kings of Persia, (Daniel 10:13 ESV)

Then the devil left him, and behold, angels came and were ministering to him. (Matthew 4:11 ESV)

42. The worship of angels is forbidden.

Humans are forbidden from worshipping angels. The Bible records that people even tried but were rebuffed!

“You shall have no other gods before me. (Exodus 20:3 ESV)

Then Jesus said to him, “Be gone, Satan! For it is written,

“‘You shall worship the Lord your God
and him only shall you serve.’” (Matthew 4:10 ESV)

 I, John, am the one who heard and saw these things. And when I heard and saw them, I fell down to worship at the feet of the angel who showed them to me, but he said to me, “You must not do that! I am a fellow servant with you and your brothers the prophets, and with those who keep the words of this book. Worship God.” (Revelation 22:8-9 ESV)

43. The angels worship God.

The angels reject our worship but instead themselves worship God. When we worship, we join their unending worship. When we worship alone, we are never alone. Even if our churches are small, we join in the worship of an innumerable congregation.

Above him stood the seraphim. Each had six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. And one called to another and said:

“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts;
the whole earth is full of his glory!” (Isaiah 6:2-3 ESV)

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,

“Glory to God in the highest,
    and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!” (Luke 2:13-14 ESV)

 And all the angels were standing around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures, and they fell on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, (Revelation 7:11 ESV)

44. Angels bear souls to heaven.

In the parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus, Jesus says that when Lazarus died, he was “carried by the angels to Abraham’s side” in heaven (Luke 16:22 ESV). Elijah’s whole self, body, and soul, were born by angels into heaven (2 Kings 2:11-12 ESV).

And as they still went on and talked, behold, chariots of fire and horses of fire separated the two of them. And Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven. And Elisha saw it and he cried, “My father, my father! The chariots of Israel and its horsemen!” And he saw him no more.

Then he took hold of his own clothes and tore them in two pieces. (2 Kings 2:11-12 ESV)

The poor man died and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried, (Luke 16:22 ESV)

45. The angels will assist in the final judgment.

The angels will assist in the final judgment when Jesus returns in power and glory. Jesus says that “with a loud trumpet call,” his angels will gather “the elect from the four winds,” meaning from all the earth (Matthew 24:31 ESV). They will also gather “all the nations” (Matthew 25:31-32 ESV). A cry of an archangel will announce Jesus’ return (1 Thessalonians 4:16 ESV).

And he will send out his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other. (Matthew 24:31 ESV)

“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. (Matthew 25:31-32 ESV)

For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. (1 Thessalonians 4:16 ESV)

46. Angels rejoice at the progress of the Church.

Angels rejoice as Christ’s cause moves forward through His holy Church. They rejoice when sinners repent (Luke 15:7, 10 ESV) and when the good news is preached (1 Peter 1:12 ESV). This can provide resolve to repent and share the Gospel.

Just so, I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance. (Luke 15:7 ESV)

Just so, I tell you, there is joy before the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” (Luke 15:10 ESV)

It was revealed to them that they were serving not themselves but you, in the things that have now been announced to you through those who preached the good news to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven, things into which angels long to look. (1 Peter 1:12 ESV)

47. Christians will judge angels.

Christ has made Christians His coheirs (Romans 8:17 ESV), and so we will reign with him (2 Timothy 2:12 ESV). In eternal life, therefore, the Apostle Paul says that Christians will judge angels (1 Corinthians 6:3 ESV). This likely means that they will stand in condemnation of the evil angels (2 Peter 2:4 ESV) and exercise authority over God’s angels.

Do you not know that we are to judge angels? How much more, then, matters pertaining to this life! (1 Corinthians 6:3 ESV)

if we endure, we will also reign with him;
if we deny him, he also will deny us; (2 Timothy 2:12 ESV)

For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to chains of gloomy darkness to be kept until the judgment; (2 Peter 2:4 ESV)

48. The Bible depicts angels as driving chariots of fire.

This happened more than once! While angels are not explicitly mentioned in either of these passages, it is assumed that they were the drivers of the chariots of fire that took Elijah up to heaven (2 Kings 2:11-12 ESV) and that surrounded the Syrian armies that threatened Elisha (2 Kings 6:16-17).

And as they still went on and talked, behold, chariots of fire and horses of fire separated the two of them. And Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven. And Elisha saw it and he cried, “My father, my father! The chariots of Israel and its horsemen!” And he saw him no more.

Then he took hold of his own clothes and tore them in two pieces. (2 Kings 2:11-12 ESV)

He said, “Do not be afraid, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” Then Elisha prayed and said, “O Lord, please open his eyes that he may see.” So the Lord opened the eyes of the young man, and he saw, and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha. (2 Kings 6:16-17 ESV)

49. Jacob wrestled with the Angel of the Lord.

Jacob wrestling at the Jabbok Ford is a fascinating account. It does not say explicitly that Jacob wrestled with the “Angel of the Lord,” but given what we know about the Angel of the Lord, it is a reasonable conclusion. Hosea says that Jacob “strove with the angel” (Hosea 12:4 ESV), and instead, Genesis says that Jacob wrestled with God (Genesis 32:28 ESV). The Old Testament often describes the Angel of the Lord as the appearance of God in the form of an angel. This leads us to our final amazing biblically accurate fact about angels, and it will shock you.

Then he said, “Your name shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel, for you have striven with God and with men, and have prevailed.” (Genesis 32:28 ESV)

He strove with the angel and prevailed;
he wept and sought his favor.
He met God at Bethel,
and there God spoke with us— (Hosea 12:4 ESV)

50. The Angel of the Lord is the Pre-Incarnate Christ.

The terms “the Angel of the Lord” or “the Angel of God” occur over 40 times in the Old Testament. Many of these accounts indicate that the Angel of the Lord is God Himself. In the very first use of this term, the account of Hagar at the spring, the Angel of the Lord announces to her that she is pregnant with Ishmael. After this encounter, it says, “She called the name of the Lord who spoke to her, ‘You are a God of seeing,’ for she said, ‘Truly here I have seen him who looks after me’” (Genesis 16:13 ESV). Likewise, when Moses sees the Angel of the Lord in the burning bush, Exodus goes on to say that the Lord Himself sees Moses’ actions and speaks to him (3:1-6).

Because of this, most Christians consider the Angel of the Lord to be a theophany, a word that means an appearance or revealing of God Himself. But, how is it that God reveals Himself?

Many Christians hold that God only reveals Himself by means of His eternal Word. His eternal Word is how He relates to this world. He created the world by His Word (Genesis 1:3 ESV, John 1:1-3 ESV). That Word is His Son (John 1:14 ESV). He not only created the world through His Son, His eternal Word, but He also sustains it by His Word (Acts 17:28). God creates and sustains the world by His Word, so it is only fitting that He redeems it by His Word (John 1:14, 17 ESV). That same Word makes God known, and by the preaching of the Word, Christians come to faith (John 1:18 ESV, Romans 10:17 ESV).

If God relates to the world only by means of His Word, and His Word is the means by which God makes Himself known, it is reasonable to conclude that God revealing Himself in the Angel of the Lord was an act of His Word, His Son, the Pre-Incarnate Christ.

And so when Jacob wrestled with the Angel of the Lord, He was wrestling with the one who would be his descendant as Jesus of Nazareth!

Conclusion

Falsehoods about angels abound, but the truth about them is even more amazing. The truth about angels can warn Christians away from sin, encourage them in the midst of struggle, and give them confidence for today, tomorrow, and eternity. Above all, the truth about angels points us to further faithfulness.

Knowing that the angels rejoice when we repent encourages us to admit our sins to Jesus and embrace His grace and mercy won for us on His Cross. We are spurred to worship as we remember that they invite us to worship God and that we join in their unending worship when we praise the Lord. The truth that the greatest angel, the Angel of the Lord, is the Pre-Incarnate Christ and keeps our faith focused on God’s Son.

Just as angels themselves serve Christians, the truth about them serves us as well.