Angels - Our Gift From God
Author: Bruce Cook
All my life I had heard, read and sang about angels, not really giving a lot of thought to, or about them. Just before my mothers passing away in August of 1984 she had told me of her wonderful experience of a visit from a spiritual being. After talking with Mom there was no doubt in either of our minds that this was a real experience, Mom passed away shortly after that.
From that time until now I have had quite an interest in angels and a desire to know more about them. As I have written before there are times when a word, phrase or title comes into my mind and I have learned to write them down. The word angel has appeared to me a great number of times since then, which in itself is unusual, because it keeps coming back to me much stronger and brighter each time. So I began searching the bible along with reading books, being careful about who had written or recommended the books. My children bought me a book titled “All The Angels in the Bible” that is a very good book. I was also careful to look up scriptures when they were listed. I started to make notes and soon found that there was so much to write about and that it would take a good deal of writing to cover it all.
I began to wonder about how many times in my life that I have been unknowingly in the presence of, protected by or attended to by one or more angels. At once I was drawn back to Korea and the beginning of the winter of 1951. We were well north of the 38th parallel, and the summer had been very hot, well over a hundred degrees at times. We knew that the winter could get from thirty to sixty degrees below zero. But God gave us wonderful bodies that can adapt to situations you can hardly imagine. Let me give you a little back ground on my physical condition. I went to Fort Knox weighing two hundred and thirty-five pounds. At 6’ 1” I was in pretty good physical condition because of playing a lot of sports, working out and physical labor. At times we were training in as much as nineteen below zero weather. At the end of my basic training I weighed two hundred and fifteen pounds.
After a ten-day furlough I was flown to Japan, then Korea to join my outfit the 185th Combat Engineers for the spring offense. That evening we were trapped behind enemy lines. By early winter I weighed one hundred and ninety pounds. In late fall or early winter a supply of winter clothing was sent to us, but as the clothing made its way up to my outfit, solders were supplying themselves with winter clothing. The only thing that I received to wear that would fit me was a sweater and a pair of glove shells for my hands. As winter come on my body was able to adapt quite a bit to the cold except for some frostbite on my fingers.
One cold day I was near a road when I heard a jeep coming, I went to the road and was standing there when a Lieutenant pulled up driving the jeep. He stopped by me and asked, soldier where is your winter clothing? I told him that there wasn’t anything I could wear by the time the clothing had reached my outfit. He told me to get in the jeep, and he took me back to several different Headquarters Companies. At each stop he got me something to wear. When he was finished I had a complete winter outfit consisting of snowpac boots, winter parka, gloves, hat and even new socks. The Lieutenant drove me back to the same place that he had picked me up and let me off. He said good luck soldier and drove off.
For some reason there weren’t any names mentioned, except Lieutenant and soldier. I have never forgotten that day. Later when I was home and able to reflect on it, I asked myself several questions about the event that I can’t exactly answer. A few of the questions are as follows: Did God send a spiritual being to attend and help me? Did God just send another soldier to help me?
Where did he come from?
Why was an officer driving his own jeep?
How did he know where to go for each piece of clothing?
Why did he drive off going further north into the enemy?
Why weren’t there any names exchanged?
Fifty years later I wish that I had asked him some of these questions. But maybe again I wasn’t supposed to.
I wonder how many times in our lives we come into contact with one of God's messengers and how many times we just take things for granted or simply walk on by never taking the time to reflect on it.
A person by the name of Milton wrote the following: So dear to heaven is saintly chastity, That when a soul is found sincerely so, A thousand liveried angels lackey (attend) her.
Another person by the name of Prince wrote this poem.
Man hath two attendant angels Ever waiting by his side, With him wheresoe’r he wanders, Wheresoe’r his feet abide, One to warn him when he darklith And rebuke him if he stray, One to leave him to his nature, And so let him go his way.
The bible mentions angels over three hundred times. Angels are real and do exist, and they are here to help us in our earthly struggles. Angels are created spiritual without bodies but can take form when the need requires it.
Billy Graham says that we cannot study the subject of angels in the Bible without becoming aware of ranks among them. Evidence shows they are organized in teams of authority and glory. It seems to follow a pattern; archangels, angels, seraphim, cherubim, principalities, authorities, power, thrones, might and domain.
Spirits who convey Gods will to man.
A lovable person.
Timothy Jones states that angels ought not to be ignored and that they are Heralds or Messengers.
They worship God, and as worshipers they are diligent observers of his work, in creation, in providence and in redemption.
They convey messages to us from God, and as messengers they fulfill a further role as our protectors, acting throughout as agents of God to do us service. Both as communicators and as Guardians their work is ordinarily unnoticeable, and not until we get to heaven shall we know how much we owe to it.
Martin Luther wrote that although angels stand before the face and in the presence of God and his Son Christ, yet they are hard about us.
Calvin said that God employs spiritual beings to take care of us, but that is not their only or even primary assignment, but a significant one. God uses angels not so much because God needs them, But because we need them. They remind us that God exercises personal care over each of us.
Angels remind us that God sees our daily details and that caring for human beings ranks high on their list of duties. They keep vigil for our safety, take upon themselves our defense, direct our way, and take care that some harm may not befall us. They do not wander off. His elect messengers surround you.
Billy Graham also says that when Christians die an angel will be there to comfort us, to give us peace and joy at that most critical hour, and to usher us into the very presence of God, where we shall dwell with the Lord forever.
There is a story in Ann Spangler’s book, “An Angel A Day” written in 1994 about a child named Catherine, who was dying of leukemia. Catherine’s parents had been raise in Christian homes, but had long since abandoned their faith and their families. When Catherine was ten, she became so weak she couldn’t leave her bed. Joann Kruse told Spangler this story.
While my Aunt and uncle were keeping vigil one afternoon at her bedside, she shocked them by suddenly sitting straight up and pointing. “Can’t you see the angels? They’re all around us:” She said excitedly. Uncle Ray asked her what they were doing. “They’re laughing and one of them is stretching out his arms and asking me if I would like to go with them“, the little girl replied. “Would you like to go?” My uncle asked. “If it’s all right with you and Mom,” she replied. The parents nodded their assent. Catherine reached out both arms to the invisible angels, and she was gone.
Catherine’s story reminds and reassures us that the material realm in which we live is not all there is: That there is a spiritual realm beyond. This spiritual realm is not only the home of God and spiritual beings, but it is the true home of believers as well. Physical death is simply crossing over to another realm, which is far better.
Angels warn of Judgment.
Carry out Judgment.
Will separate the sheep from goats, wheat from tares and saved from the lost.
Angels will administer the penalty that will cast lost souls into the furnace of fire. Matthew 13:50
When I think of angels I think also of one third that were cast out of Heaven with Satan for rebelling against his creator. While we can not be certain, some scholars estimate that as many as one third cast their lot with Satan when he mysteriously rebelled against his creator. In any event the book of Hebrews says that angels constitute an “innumerable company,” vast hosts that stagger our imagination. A third of them would likely be counted in the hundreds of thousands - ones who are now desperate demons.
Angels neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in Heaven. Because of this we make the deduction that their number remains constant. For obedient angels do not die. Those that are fallen will suffer the final judgment at the time God finishes dealing with them they cannot be redeemed.
I have to ask myself, is this army of messengers working in the every day world as a force for and under Satan’s command? Are they trying to get people to sin and undermine Gods teachings and commands? Are they working among us as an evil force? If this is so, then those who sin and do not repent are in a sense being drafted into Satan’s army. An army that is doomed to be defeated in the final battle. After research I find that the answer to all of the above questions that I ask myself is yes.
They are wreaking havoc among individuals, families and nations. They are dangerous, vicious and deadly. They want you under their control and will pay any price to get you. In Billy Grahams book “Angels Gods Secret Agents,” he says that fallen angels are demons and evil followers that press the downfall of nations, to corrupt moral standards and to waste human resources, to corrupt society’s order, and to shake the kingdom of our God. He will do everything in his power to hold people captive in sin and drag them to the prison of eternal separation from God. Isn’t this what is happening today?
We hear many times about disasters or weather conditions as being “Acts of God”. I have even seen this phrase used in legal contracts. But Isaiah 13:12-14 clearly points out Satan’s objectives; He uses his destructive power to create havoc, fire, flood, earthquakes, storms, pestilence, disease, and devastation of peoples and nations. Satan has great power, and many fallen angels (as demons) to assist him. Why blame God?
Some of the observations and notes I made from the book Angels Gods Secret Agents are as follows; God uses them to warn of Judgment and carrying it out.They warned Abraham of the approaching doom of Sodom and Gomorra and to tell Lot and his family to leave, and rained destruction on the cities. Genesis 18 Angels destroyed the Assyrian army of 185,000 solders that were found dead on the battlefield the next morning. II Kings 19:35 An angel almost destroyed Jerusalem. I Chronicles 21:16 An angel smote Herod Agrippa, because he didn’t give God the Glory. Acts 12:22-23.
An angel destroyed the Egyptian first born. Exodus 12:21-30.
Angels carried the poor beggar rich in faith into Abraham’s bosom in the book of Luke. What a thought to have angelic pallbearers.
Angels escorted Lazarus when he died and it is also believed that angels escorted Stephen also.
They have never felt the joy that our salvation brings and they cannot preach the Gospel. In their purity they have escaped the effects of sin and are unable to comprehend what it means to be lost. Only man can speak of the salvation experience to man - The Church. His messengers can assist those who preach. Their assistance can include the use of miraculous and corroborating signs.
No angel can be an evangelist, pastor a church nor can they do counseling.
No angel can enjoy sonship in Jesus or be partaker of the divine nature of becoming a joint heir with Jesus in his kingdom. You and I are a unique and royal priesthood in the universe; we have privileges that even God's messengers cannot experience.
Three were given names in scriptures; Michael, Gabriel and Lucifer. I also read about one by the name of Raphael but I cannot corroborate it.
While I was reading and studying I ran across this prayer that generations of Jewish children prayed at bedtime, and it goes as follows;
In the name of our Lord, God of Israel: May Michael be at my right hand and Gabriel at my left, before me Uriel and behind me Raphael, and above my head—the divine presence of God.
After further study, I found that in the twelfth and thirteen centuries there was an outbreak of angel fever. They were thought to be involved in governing everything from planets to hours of day and night. Scripture names only two, Michael and Gabriel but names were invented for other members of the Angelic Hosts. Many names are found in Jewish religious writings of the first two centuries before Christ.
There are Spiritual wars and battles going on all the time around us that we cannot see.
After writing about my Korean experience I later read the following story about a small group of American marines in the first division who had been trapped up north in Korea. With the thermometer at twenty degrees below zero, they were close to freezing to death. They had nothing to eat for six days. Surrender to the Chinese seemed their only hope of survival. But one of the men, a Christian pointed out certain verses of scripture, and taught his comrades to sing a song of praise to God. Following this they heard a crashing noise, and turned to see a wild boar rushing toward them. As they tried to jump out of his way, he suddenly stopped in his tracks. One of the soldiers raised his rifle to shoot, but before he could fire the boar inexplicably toppled over. They rushed up to kill him only to find that he was already dead. That night they feasted on the meat, and began to regain their strength.
The next morning just as the sun was rising they heard another noise. Their fear that a Chinese patrol had found them suddenly vanished as they found themselves face to face with a South Korean who could speak English. He said “I will show you out.” He led them through forest and mountains to safety behind their own lines. When they looked up to thank him, they found he had disappeared.
I wonder how many other experiences like this have happened on a regular basis. I believe that we are at times surrounded and protected by spiritual beings.
I would like for each one to think back and try to recall a time in your life when you have experienced or felt the presence of one or more messengers that have assisted you or a loved one in some way. I believe that if you stay close to God that you can sense or feel them all around you at times. As I have explained, God sends his angels to minister in many different ways for many different reasons.
I read or heard somewhere about a messenger that was on his/her way to minister to one of Gods believing children. On the way a demonic angel intercepted Gods angel and a fierce battle was going on causing the messenger to be delayed from carrying out his or her intended duty. The Archangel Gabriel came to take over the fight so that the angel could continue on to its intended mission.
I have noticed that in my life, someone else’s life or even the church, that the closer we are to God, the more intense becomes the work of Satan. I believe that sometimes he feels it necessary to take a personal interest and do the work himself, rather than his demonic army of fallen angels. I know that I have noticed this in my own life and my walk with the Lord. During my lifetime I have had the privilege of experiencing spiritual and physical events that I have been able to write about at different times. Each time drew me closer to the Lord.
I started this study about angels back in 2003 and after a while I laid it back and started writing about other things, though I continued to read about angels off and on. I had just finished reading a book titled “Celebration of Angels” by Timothy Jones, and am now studying a book titled “All The Angels of the Bible.” I found early on that I could only write about things that God gives me to write, and lately it seemed that I couldn’t write about anything at all. I prayed about it several times and ask God if there was anything he wanted me to do. It was as if God told me to go back and continue my study, and finish writing my story about angels.
I hope that if I have done nothing else, that I have stimulated your thinking about the gift of angels that God has given us. And how vicious satan’s army of fallen angels as demons can be to us.
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