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1.5.0 Angelogy: Doctrine of Angels

Sections for Angelogy: Doctrine of Angels

  1. Nature of Angels
  2. Office of Angels
  3. Record of Angels

1. Nature of Angels

The Doctrine of Angels


Isaiah 6:2; Matthew 1:20,24; I Thessalonians 4:16; Jude 9; Revelation 12:7

The Nature of Angels


The Hebrew definition of Angel is a supernatural representative of God, sometimes delivering messages, sometimes protecting God’s people.

Created Beings

Angels were created and have a definite beginning. They are not eternally existent in the sense that God is. They were created by God and belong to the Lord.

The number of angels is not known exactly, but since they do not procreate and they do not die, the same number exists today as when they were created. Hebrews 12:22 does describe the number of angels as ‘innumerable.’ Innumerable means uncountable; too many to count. In Matthew 26:53, it says that Jesus could have called 12 legions of angels to assist Him. A legion is 6,000 men; 12 legions would be 72,000 angels.

Luke 20:36—Neither can they die any more: for they are equal unto the angels; and are the children of God, being the children of the resurrection.

Spirit Beings

Psalm 104:4—Who maketh his angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire:

Although angels have male names, such as, Michael and Gabriel, angels are spirit beings and are neither male nor female.

Angels do not have families or marry. In Mark 12:25, we are told that when Christians get to Heaven they would be like the angels in the sense that they neither marry nor are given into marriage.

Angels never were Human, but were created as angels. There is no Scripture that even suggests humans ever become angels, as well. Also, although they can appear as men, they do not have physical bodies. There are many examples recorded in the Bible of angels appearing as men.

An angel sat under an oak tree with Gideon. Judges 6:11,12

An angel talked with Zechariah. Zechariah 1:9

An angel appeared unto Zacharias. Luke 1:11

Mary saw in angel. Luke 1:29

We are admonished to entertain strangers
because we might be entertaining angels unawares. Hebrews 13:2

Powerful but Limited

Angels are very powerful beings, but their power is limited. One angel killed 185,000 Assyrians in one night. (2 Kings 19:35) Another angel was sent by God to destroy Jerusalem, yet could not complete the destruction in I Chronicles 21:15. These passages show both the power and limitation of angels. They had the power to destroy entire cities, but when God told them to stop they had to stop. Angels cannot work independent of God. Even satan (a ‘fallen angel’ or the ‘devil’) needed permission from God to do anything to Job and his family.

Angels are not omnipresent, omnipotent, or omniscient. Angels will be judged by God’s people. (I Cor. 6:3) Angels desire to look into the meaning of the Gospel (I Peter 1:12); this shows that their understanding is limited.


There is a definite hierarchy of angels.

The Archangel

The arch angel or ‘chief angel’ is the highest ranked angel. Michael is called the arch angel in Jude 9. I Thessalonians 4:16 says when Christ returns it will be preceded by the voice of the Arch Angel.


The seraphim are mentioned only in Isaiah 6:2,6. The name seraphim portrays burning or fiery (like having a copper color). Isaiah describes them as having six wings: two covering his face, two covering his feet and two with which to fly. The posts of the door of house shook at the voice of their crying, “Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory.” One angel using tongs took a live coal from the altar and touched Isaiah’s lips. This was a symbolical purging of Isaiah’s sins.


The most frequently mentioned class of angels is the cherubim. Cherubim serve in the presence of God and guard the house of God. Cherubim were portrayed on the Ark of the Covenant and on the walls of Solomon’s Temple as standing on both sides of God beside the mercy seat.

2. Office of Angels

The Office of Angels

Ministering Spirits Heb.1:14

To God

The main duty of angels is to worship and serve God. Angels worshipping and serving God are portrayed many times in the Bible and especially in the book of Revelation. Angels worship and carry out the commands of God.

Hebrews 1:6— … let all the angels of God worship him.

I Peter 3:22—… angels and authorities and powers being made subject unto him.

Revelation 5:11—… many angels round about the throne…[10,000 x’s 10,000]

Dan 7:10;1Ki 22:19; IIKi 6:16-17; IIChr 32:7-8;Ps 68:17;103:20-21; He12:22; Re 5:11

Revelation 14:10—… he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:

To Man

Angels have been given the task by God to minister to His people.

Hebrews 1:14—Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?


Psalm 34:7—The angel of the LORD encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them.

Exodus 14:19—And the angel of God, which went before the camp of Israel, removed and went behind them; and the pillar of the cloud went from before their face, and stood behind them:

Psalm 91:11,12—For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.

Revealing & Guiding

The angel Gabriel instructed Daniel on the meaning of his dreams and visions. (Daniel 8:16; 9:21) Many times in the Bible, angels delivered messages from God to men. An angel told Zechariahs he would have a son named him John. (Luke 1:19) The greatest message ever carried was Gabriel’s message to Mary that she would conceive a son and call His name Jesus.

We are warned in Galatians 1:8 that if even an angel from Heaven were to preach any other Gospel, he is to be accursed. Even the message of angels is to be tested by the Word.

God has used angels to provide physical needs such as food for Hagar (Genesis 21:17-20), Elijah (1 Kings 19:6), and Christ after His temptation (Matthew 4:11).

Getting God's people out of danger. Angels released the apostles from prison in Acts 5, and again for Peter in Acts 12:7-9. In Daniel 6:22, an angel shut the lions’ mouth for Daniel.

Strengthening and encouraging

Angels strengthened Jesus after His temptation (Matt 4:11), encouraged the apostles to keep preaching after releasing them from prison (Acts 5:19-20), and told Paul that everyone on his ship would survive the impending shipwreck (Acts 27:23-25).

Answering prayer

God often uses angels as His means of answering the prayers of His people (Daniel 9:20-24; 10:10-12; Acts 12:1-17).

Caring for believers at the moment of death

In the story of Lazarus and the rich man, we read that angels carried the spirit of Lazarus to “Abraham's bosom” when he died (Luke 16:22).

Not to be Worshipped

Although God’s are holy creatures, they are not to be worshipped. Satan tried to get Jesus to worship him, but Jesus flatly told him only God is to be worshipped. Angels are meant to worship God and in no case are they to be worshipped.

Luke 4:8— …Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.

Hebrews 1:6—…And let all the angels of God worship him [Jesus].

Colossians 2:18—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,

Romans 1:25—…worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator…

We are not to worship any created being, even angels. All worship is to be directed to the Creator. It is dangerous folly for many to put unhealthy emphasis on angels. Only three names are given in Scripture out of the innumerable number that makes up the Heavenly Host; this should be an indication to us not to give undue attention and focus to angels. Our focus should be on Christ and being led by the Holy Ghost.

3. Record of Angels

The Record of Angels

Heavenly Host

Luke 2:13—And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,

Job 38:7—When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?

The Angel of the Lord

There are four angels named or titled in the Bible. The first mention of angels in the Bible is Genesis 16:7. The ‘angel of the Lord’ told Hagar to return to Sarai.

Genesis 16:7—And the angel of the LORD found her [Hagar] by a fountain of water…

This is the first of many times ‘The Angel of the Lord’ delivered messages:

Spoke to Moses out of a burning bush. Ex. 3:2

Spoke to Manoah and his wife about Samson. Judges 13:2

Prevented Balaam. Numbers 22:22

Appeared unto Gideon. Judges 6:12


Lucifer means daystar, shining, or bright one. In his rebellion against God, Lucifer fell into the condemnation of the devil becoming the chief of the fallen angels and adversary of God. Lucifer’s fall is described in Isaiah 14:12-14 and Ezekiel 28:12-15. Before his fall, Lucifer was a magnificent angel who in pride tried to exalt himself above the other angels as God’s equal. He was created into a lofty position, but fell far from it.

John 8:44 …. [the devil] abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. …

I Timothy 3:6—…being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil.

In his fall, Lucifer drew one-third of the angels of heaven with him. In a great war in Heaven, satan and his followers were cast out of heaven. (Revelation 12:4)


Michael is the only angel referred to as an archangel. His chief responsibility seems to be a militant protection of God’s people.

Daniel 12:1—And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.

The word prince in this verse means ruler, commander, chief, or leader. Jude 9 describes a confrontation between Michael and satan. Michael is presented as an angel of battle and war.

Revelation 12:7—And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,


Gabriel is a messenger in the four times he is mentioned in the Bible. (Daniel 8:16; 9:21; Luke 1:19, 26) Some have speculated that Gabriel is an archangel, but there is no verse of Scripture to confirm this.