June 20, 2019
Angels are interesting creations. They are immortal but can take on human characteristics. When they are seen by people, Scripture always describes them as men. Even though angels are always masculine, artists and poets have corrupted them to be cute little babies with pudgy cheeks and a sweet smile or females. In both Hebrew (mal’ak) and Greek (aggelos) the words are masculine nouns and mean messenger. Angels also have emotions. For instance, Lucifer’s fall was caused by his pride, and when Jesus was crucified the angels were ready to fight for Him if He had asked them. They also can feel joy. They rejoice over God’s creation. That’s seen in the book of Job when God asked Job “Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? declare, if thou hast understanding. Who hath laid the measures thereof, if thou knowest? or who hath stretched the line upon it? Whereupon are the foundations thereof fastened? or who laid the corner stone thereof: When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?” Job 38:4-7. “Morning stars” and “sons of God” are terms for angels. We don’t know exactly when angels were created, but we know that they existed when God laid the foundations of the earth.
When Jesus was born the angels rejoiced. Their joy was shown to the shepherds who were watching their flocks in the fields around Bethlehem. “And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the City of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.” Luke 2:9-11. Can you imagine sitting quietly in a field watching over your sheep, the stars are twinkling in a dark sky when suddenly the peace and quiet is interrupted by the appearance of an angel? No wonder those poor shepherds were afraid! What happened next would be even more awe-inspiring. “Suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.” Luke 2:13-14. Not just one angel, but a multitude praising God appeared suddenly. They didn’t wander into view but appeared from another dimension. What a beautiful sight and sound that heavenly praise must have been. The angel directed those shepherds to go and find Jesus lying in a manger. They followed the angel’s instructions and other than Joseph and Mary they were the first to lay eyes on the Lamb of God.
Shepherds weren’t the most respected of people, but they did tenderly care for their sheep. Jesus identified Himself as the Good Shepherd who seeks lost sheep and brings them to safety. Jesus always used descriptive stories in simple terms that were easily understood by the people listening. He told a story of a shepherd who had one hundred sheep, but one wandered off. The shepherd cared for his sheep and left the ninety-nine to go in search of the one that was lost. “And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he cometh home, he calleth together his friends and neighbours, saying unto them, Rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep which was lost.” Luke 15:5-6. The Good Shepherd rejoices when a lost sinner repents. After all, He shed His blood for the redemption of lost souls. Jesus is our Good Shepherd who gave His life for the sheep. When a person comes to Him for salvation every Christian should be filled with joy and rejoice! Who else rejoices? “Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth.” Luke 15:10. If you want to bring joy to the angels in Heaven, go out and witness to the people around you who don’t know Jesus. When they repent and accept Jesus for salvation, the angels will rejoice.
Isaiah was given a vision of the Throne of God, and what he saw was strange but beautiful. He saw the Throne, but he also saw seraphim around it. “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. And the posts of the door moved at the voice of him that cried, and the house was filled with smoke.” Isaiah 6:2-4. What a beautiful sound it must have been… “Qadowsh, quadowsh, quadowsh, Yehovah tsaba”. The Apostle John also was given a look at the Throne of God when he was given the Revelation. First, Jesus dictated letters to seven congregations and those letters describe the Church age. After the last letter, John saw a door open up in heaven and he heard a voice like a trumpet telling him to “…Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter.” Revelation 4:1b. John experienced the Rapture, then describes the things he saw after that. It must have been hard to put what he saw into words, but from his description we know it will be amazing when we all get Raptured. What John saw was similar to what Isaiah saw. “And the four beasts had each of them six wings about him; and they were full of eyes within: and they rest not day and night, saying, Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come.” Revelation 4:8. A difference between Isaiah’s vision and what John saw was that John also saw 24 elders. Since what John saw was after the Rapture, the 24 elders represent Raptured Christians. After the Rapture we will be there around the throne and will join in saying “hagios, hagios, hagios kyrios theos pantokrator“! Why not join the angels in praising our Lord today? The Rapture will happen very soon, but the angels are praising Him now and so should we.
John saw even more of the worship in Heaven. “And I beheld, and I heard the voice of many angels round about the throne and the beasts and the elders: and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands; saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing.” Revelation 5:11-12. Oh, what a sight and what a sound! Multitudes of angels, the beasts, and the elders all praising Christ…the Lamb that was slain for our redemption. Worthy is the Lamb, and holy is His name! “And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever. And the four beasts said, Amen. And the four and twenty elders fell down and worshipped him that liveth for ever and ever.” Revelation 5:13-14. Amen, amen, amen! I can’t wait to be a part of that glorious scene.
While Christians are worshipping our Lord, the people left on earth who didn’t accept Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection for their salvation will be facing the Great Tribulation. Brothers and sisters, don’t delay. Get busy and witness to your lost family, friends, and neighbors before it’s too late. The signs of the times are evidence that time is quickly running out. As God’s wrath is poured out upon the Beast, the Whore of Babylon and all who have rejected Christ, their wailing and gnashing of teeth will fill the earth. Don’t be one of those who have chosen to reject Christ because you refuse to turn from your lusts. If you reject Christ you will be one who sees the horrors of the Tribulation. You cannot plead ignorance because God has revealed the future in Scripture and I’m sure someone has tried to talk to you about salvation through Jesus. The earth will be filled with sorrow and weeping, but there is joy in heaven. The joy isn’t because men have chosen to reject Christ’s sacrifice, but rather it’s because the evil of Satan has been defeated. “And after these things I heard a great voice of much people in heaven, saying, Alleluia; Salvation, and glory and honour, and power, unto the Lord our God: for true and righteous are his judgments: for he hath judged the great whore, which did corrupt the earth with her fornication, and hath avenged the blood of his servants at her hand.” Revelation 19:1-2. When the enemy is defeated, there will be much rejoicing in Heaven. “And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia; for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth. Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready.” Revelation 19:6-7. That’s a reason to rejoice. Both angels and Christians have much to rejoice over. Our life on earth is fleeting and the many pursuits we think are so important now won’t be remembered as we stand before His throne and cast our crowns at His feet. Only the things done for Him will bring eternal joy, and we will sing His praises with the angels.
Our life today is filled with the struggle of trying to overcome sin and live for Jesus. Every Christian needs to fight in that spiritual fight. Put on the armor of God and don’t take it off. Get into the battle and fight the spiritual fight. There are many lost souls who need to find salvation before it’s too late. The angels rejoice over each sinner who comes to salvation, and when Christ calls all Christians Home we will no longer have to imagine what the sound of angels rejoicing is like. We will be there and we will lend our voices to the worship too.
God bless you all,