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1 definition found
 for Angel
From Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary :

  Angel
     a word signifying, both in the Hebrew and Greek, a "messenger,"
     and hence employed to denote any agent God sends forth to
     execute his purposes. It is used of an ordinary messenger (Job
     1:14: 1 Sam. 11:3; Luke 7:24; 9:52), of prophets (Isa. 42:19;
     Hag. 1:13), of priests (Mal. 2:7), and ministers of the New
     Testament (Rev. 1:20).
     
       It is also applied to such impersonal agents as the pestilence
     (2 Sam. 24:16, 17; 2 Kings 19:35), the wind (Ps. 104:4).
     
       But its distinctive application is to certain heavenly
     intelligences whom God employs in carrying on his government of
     the world. The name does not denote their nature but their
     office as messengers. The appearances to Abraham at Mamre (Gen.
     18:2, 22. Comp. 19:1), to Jacob at Peniel (Gen. 32:24, 30), to
     Joshua at Gilgal (Josh. 5:13, 15), of the Angel of the Lord,
     were doubtless manifestations of the Divine presence,
     "foreshadowings of the incarnation," revelations before the
     "fulness of the time" of the Son of God.
     
       (1.) The existence and orders of angelic beings can only be
     discovered from the Scriptures. Although the Bible does not
     treat of this subject specially, yet there are numerous
     incidental details that furnish us with ample information. Their
     personal existence is plainly implied in such passages as Gen.
     16:7, 10, 11; Judg. 13:1-21; Matt. 28:2-5; Heb. 1:4, etc.
     
       These superior beings are very numerous. "Thousand thousands,"
     etc. (Dan. 7:10; Matt. 26:53; Luke 2:13; Heb. 12:22, 23). They
     are also spoken of as of different ranks in dignity and power
     (Zech. 1:9, 11; Dan. 10:13; 12:1; 1 Thess. 4:16; Jude 1:9; Eph.
     1:21; Col. 1:16).
     
       (2.) As to their nature, they are spirits (Heb. 1:14), like
     the soul of man, but not incorporeal. Such expressions as "like
     the angels" (Luke 20:36), and the fact that whenever angels
     appeared to man it was always in a human form (Gen. 18:2; 19:1,
     10; Luke 24:4; Acts 1:10), and the titles that are applied to
     them ("sons of God," Job 1:6; 38:7; Dan. 3:25; comp. 28) and to
     men (Luke 3:38), seem all to indicate some resemblance between
     them and the human race. Imperfection is ascribed to them as
     creatures (Job 4:18; Matt. 24:36; 1 Pet. 1:12). As finite
     creatures they may fall under temptation; and accordingly we
     read of "fallen angels." Of the cause and manner of their "fall"
     we are wholly ignorant. We know only that "they left their first
     estate" (Matt. 25:41; Rev. 12:7,9), and that they are "reserved
     unto judgement" (2 Pet. 2:4). When the manna is called "angels'
     food," this is merely to denote its excellence (Ps. 78:25).
     Angels never die (Luke 20:36). They are possessed of superhuman
     intelligence and power (Mark 13:32; 2 Thess. 1:7; Ps. 103:20).
     They are called "holy" (Luke 9:26), "elect" (1 Tim. 5:21). The
     redeemed in glory are "like unto the angels" (Luke 20:36). They
     are not to be worshipped (Col. 2:18; Rev. 19:10).
     
       (3.) Their functions are manifold. (a) In the widest sense
     they are agents of God's providence (Ex. 12:23; Ps. 104:4; Heb.
     11:28; 1 Cor. 10:10; 2 Sam. 24:16; 1 Chr. 21:16; 2 Kings 19:35;
     Acts 12:23). (b) They are specially God's agents in carrying on
     his great work of redemption. There is no notice of angelic
     appearances to man till after the call of Abraham. From that
     time onward there are frequent references to their ministry on
     earth (Gen. 18; 19; 24:7, 40; 28:12; 32:1). They appear to
     rebuke idolatry (Judg. 2:1-4), to call Gideon (Judg. 6:11, 12),
     and to consecrate Samson (13:3). In the days of the prophets,
     from Samuel downward, the angels appear only in their behalf (1
     Kings 19:5; 2 Kings 6:17; Zech. 1-6; Dan. 4:13, 23; 10:10, 13,
     20, 21).
     
       The Incarnation introduces a new era in the ministrations of
     angels. They come with their Lord to earth to do him service
     while here. They predict his advent (Matt. 1:20; Luke 1:26-38),
     minister to him after his temptation and agony (Matt. 4:11; Luke
     22:43), and declare his resurrection and ascension (Matt.
     28:2-8; John 20:12, 13; Acts 1:10, 11). They are now ministering
     spirits to the people of God (Heb. 1:14; Ps. 34:7; 91:11; Matt.
     18:10; Acts 5:19; 8:26; 10:3; 12:7; 27:23). They rejoice over a
     penitent sinner (Luke 15:10). They bear the souls of the
     redeemed to paradise (Luke 16:22); and they will be the
     ministers of judgement hereafter on the great day (Matt. 13:39,
     41, 49; 16:27; 24:31). The passages (Ps. 34:7, Matt. 18:10)
     usually referred to in support of the idea that every individual
     has a particular guardian angel have no such meaning. They
     merely indicate that God employs the ministry of angels to
     deliver his people from affliction and danger, and that the
     angels do not think it below their dignity to minister even to
     children and to the least among Christ's disciples.
     
       The "angel of his presence" (Isa. 63:9. Comp. Ex. 23:20, 21;
     32:34; 33:2; Num. 20:16) is probably rightly interpreted of the
     Messiah as the guide of his people. Others have supposed the
     expression to refer to Gabriel (Luke 1:19).
     

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