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Hello and welcome to all. Just call me “Joanie” and I hope you will join this Christian blog and we can have some lively chats. This blog is non-denominational and non-controversial.  It is designed to present biblical history, and other biblical-related Christian topics. You will not find “hell-fire and damnation” preaching here. Open discussion is encouraged. I will contribute articles to share with you and hope we can learn more about the Bible, it truly is like an onion; layer upon layer.

A Study on Angels (3 Parts)

Part I: Creation and Purpose

Angels are mentioned 273 times throughout the Old and New Testaments, and other ancient-related records because God wants us to be knowledgeable about their purpose. He created the angels following the initial Genesis of Earth to glorify Him (as were we, Gen. 2). Angels are spiritual beings above us temporarily until we reach Heaven. They are subject to Christ and they neither marry nor die and we are cautioned not to worship them. Angels are also called messengers, Watchers, military hosts, Sons of the Mighty, and Sons of God (I Peter 3: 22; Luke 20: 36; Matt. 22: 30; Rev. 4:8; Heb. 1: 16; Col. 2:18; Rev. 22: 8-9).

Description of Angels

When most of us think of angels, we envision handsome, quite tall, blonde male figures dressed in long white robes and adorned with a pair of beautifully-feathered long wings. While this may be the description of some angles, it does not describe all of them. There is a hierarchy of angles whose assignments and positions are determined by God. There are nine levels of angels that will be discussed. They are as follows according to rank: 

Seraphim: In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple. Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly. And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory… (Isiah 6; Job 38:7; Rev. 4: 8; Rev. 5:11-12). Angels (Sons of God) were with God at the Creation

Cherubim: Then I looked, and, behold, in the firmament that was above the head of the cherubims there appeared over them as it were a sapphire stone, as the appearance of the likeness of a throne. And he spake unto the man clothed with linen, and said, Go in between the wheels, even under the cherub, and fill thine hand with coals of fire from between the cherubims, and scatter them over the city. And he went in in my sight. Now the cherubims stood on the right side of the house, when the man went in; and the cloud filled the inner court. … (Ezek. 10).

Archangels of Thrones, Dominions or Lordships, Virtues of Strongholds, Powers of Authorities, and Principalities of Rulers: For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him (Colossians 1:16).

Archangels: The archangels are listed in ancient Hebrew Scriptures: The seven Archangels that are talked about come from Jewish writings of 250 BC in the Book of Watchers, which were merged with other writings to create what we know as the book of Enoch, and used in Orthodox Ethiopian Christian Cannon (one of the first Christian movements in the world); but was omitted by the Roman Catholic Western Cannon around 700 AD, and considered heretical due to the confusion over the order of chapters, parables and visions inserted in the wrong places. References to the seven archangels are found in the book of Enoch, Dead Sea Scrolls and Tobit. Note that the names may differ depending on text eg: Zadkiel also known as Sachiel. New and more accurate translations are available with the material in the proper order.                   http://scriptural-truth.com/stuff/BookOfEnoch.pdf

Chief Archangel Michael is especially considered to be the Guardian of the Orthodox Faith and a fighter against heresies, and a military commander. His name in Hebrew means “Who is equal to God?” Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee (Jude 9). He is associated with protecting and being a leader of God’s army

Archangel Gabriel is the messenger of God and whose name means “God is my strength.” He is in care of the mysteries of God.

Archangel Raphael is associated with healing. His name means “It is God who heals.”

Archangel Uriel’s name means “God is my light,” and who is usually seen as an angel of repentance.

Archangel Jophiel is the angel of justice, wisdom and understanding.

Archangel Zadkiel is associated with freedom, benevolence and mercy.

Archangel Cameal is associated with strength, courage and war.

God created the chief angels in this order: Michael, Lucifer, Raphael, and Gabriel. The three angels in Rev. 14: 6-12 are believed to be preparing the world for the Second Coming. Lucifer was guardian of the throne and in charge of music

Coming:

Part II: Exploring the angels and fallen angels listed in the Book of Enoch.

Part III: The Nature of Angels

Sources for Part I:

Elwell, Walter A. “Entry for ‘Angel.” (1997). Evangelical Dictionary of Theology.

Life Application study Bible. (NIV, 2005). Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. Wheaton, Illinois

And Zondervan Publishing House, Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Luginbill, Robert Dr. (n.d.). Angelology: the study of angels.

New King James Version Study Bible. (2007). Pub. Thomas Nelson, Inc.

The Lord is “My Sovereign, Shepherd, and Salvation” Metaphor

The Lord is “My Sovereign, Shepherd, and Salvation” Metaphor

Three psalms that begin with the words, “The Lord is my . . .” will be discussed in this essay. David is the author of all three in which he uses metaphors to describe God as his deliverer and savior, the trust he has in God, and the faith he has in Him. The three psalms to be discussed are Psalms 18:2; 23rd; 27th and I will comment on the things of which God is compared.

Psalm 18:2 NKJV: This psalm entitled “God the Sovereign Savior” was written by David in celebration and gratitude of God’s grace for his deliverance and victory (NIV). David used military terms in his praises of God. David saw God as a rock that could not be moved by those who wished him harm and God as a mountain fortress that protected the believers, and was a place of safety. His use of strength and stronghold served to buttress his image of the Lord. God was seen as a shield that was between David and his enemies. The horn of salvation represented might and power and further emphasized the image of God (NKJV). This picture of a mighty God as protector and Savior could easily be extended to us because He is all of that for us.

Twenty-third Psalm: “The Lord the Shepherd of His People,” was written by David to show his trust in God. He wrote from his own experience as a shepherd in his youth. Concerning the metaphor of followers (as sheep of Jesus’ flock), sheep will not lie down as long as they are disturbed about something and they are afraid of fast-running streams (NKJV). Only the shepherd (God/Jesus) can settle them down in a quiet and loving voice. Only He can lead them to the green pastures and still waters. Extending the metaphor to Christians, only He can restore our souls. God will be with us as we travel the Valley of the Shadow of Death (fear) in our time of troubles. His table and cup represent God’s provision for us. Goodness and mercy represent God/s love for us. The House of God is the land of promise (Heaven). It was the custom in David’s time to anoint guests with olive oil at meals which was part of the ritual of keeping guests safe from enemies. God can be seen as bringing us into His house forever. David sees God as a caring shepherd and dependable guide (rod and staff)  (NIV). This view of God’s loving care could be extended to cover us all.

Psalm 27 NKJV: “An Exuberant Declaration of Faith” is the name given to this psalm by David. Everyone has lived in fear and darkness at some time, but God brings the light and salvation. David wanted to be in the House of the Lord and His temple (the presence of the Lord).  He sought the Lord’s guidance every day of his life and asked the Lord not to forsake him (NIV).  He knew God had a pleasant nature and offered Him sacrifices of praise (joy). The Lord will keep him safe (in pavilion and tabernacle) David described his enemies as ravenous beasts who wanted to eat his flesh. He feared enemies might dissuade the righteous from seeking God, but he waited to know the presence of God in the land of the living (in his lifetime) and he waited on the Lord to hope in God, and wait for God’s timing and action.

Conclusion

            God is compared to mighty things such as rocks and fortresses to emphasize His strength and glory. David speaks of His greatness as he praises Him in faith, trust, and thanksgiving. The metaphors could be extended to include all Christ’s followers in all era including today. The matters brought out by David exist yet today.