Time or Eternity? ™


In Angels on April 6, 2012 at 8:00 am

 Angels who are a distinct class of intelligent beings from men; whether in the body or out of it, is to our minds, most evident from the Scriptures. The word Angellos is Greek, and the word Malak is Hebrew, and both signify a messenger, an angel. These words are used both in the Old, and in the New Testament to mean (a) human messengers, or agents for others; 2 Sam. 22:15. Mark 1:2. Jas. 2:25; (b) officers of the churches, Hag. 1:13. Rev.1:20 ; (c) Jesus Christ, Mai. iii: 1.; (d) created intelligences, both good and bad ; Heb. 1:14. Jude 6.

Now, because the word angel does, sometimes, mean a mere human being, it certainly is not good reasoning to say it can mean nothing else. The passage in Jude most clearly proves that there is a class of intelligent beings different from man. The apostle speaks of “the angels who kept not their first estate” (ten archen, their principality, as the marginal reading is.) This, most evidently conveys the idea that some of them did keep their first estate. Only those who kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation hath God reserved in everlasting chains under darkness, unto the judgment of the great day.

It is evident, then, from this passage that there must be a distinct class of beings, called angels, for these two obvious reasons, viz.:

(1.) All men have sinned, and have come short of the glory of God. Rom. 3:23. There is no exception : they have all lost their first estate. Hence, men are a different class from those beings, only some of whom have lost their first estate, while others have kept theirs.

(2.) These angels are said to have left their own habitation. God cast those of them that sinned down to hell and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment. 2 Pet. 2:4. They were cast down, and cast out of the place they formerly occupied. But, man was made on this earth. This earth was given to him at first—and although he has sinned, still he is here, and dwells upon it. He has not been cast out of it. This proves clearly that men and angels are different, and belong each to an order of beings peculiar to itself.

The Greek word tartarosas in 2 Pet. 2:4, and rendered by “cast down to hell,” or to cast into Tartarus, needs a word of explanation. The word Tartarus means, according to Greek writers, “in a physical sense, the bounds, or verge of this material system.” So that God cast the rebel angels out of his presence, into that blackness of darkness where they will be forever deprived of the light of His countenance, and that place is, probably, at present, within the atmosphere of our earth. For we read that Satan is the Prince of the power of the air, as well as the Prince of this world.

In the book of Job, (chap 38: 4-7,) we read that when God laid the foundations of the earth, and the corner stone thereof, then the morning stars (cocabai boker) sang together: and all the sons of God (Benai Elohim) shouted for joy. By these terms intelligent beings most certainly are meant, and as they sang together, when the foundations of the earth were first laid, and as man was not made till the sixth day of the work of creation, after the world had been formed, it is manifest that there must be an order of beings, wholly distinct from Adam and Eve, for they were in existence, and sang this song of praise before our first parents were created.

Here is but one more passage that we would adduce to prove that there are angels, a class of beings distinct from man, and that is in Heb.12: 22-23. The apostle says, “Ye are come to Mount Zion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels, to the general assembly and church of the first born, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, and to Jesus the Mediator of the new covenant.” Here we see that the apostle makes a distinction between angels, and the spirits of just men. He certainly does not consider them to be one and the same order of beings. If he did, why use such language ?

Taking this, then, as a fixed fact, we learn from the Bible that there are both good and bad angels; that they are numerous; that they are intelligent; that they are strong; and as wickedness does not, necessarily, diminish the strength of men or angels, wicked angels may have as much physical strength, after their fall, as they had before it. If good angels can communicate with men, and if they can move heavy stones (Matt. 28: 2,) and open prison doors, locking them up again (Acts 12:7-19,) may not evil angels do the same things ?

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