The Gospel According to the Angels by guest writter Tina Siposs
They say if you live long enough you'll see and hear just about everything. But life is still full of surprises. I am constantly surprised when browsing through religious bookshops, or reading unsolicited booklets through the mail, how some people can speak so authoritatively about things they have not personally witnessed, or experienced, and they speak their own opinions as if they were God's.
One point in question is on the subject of the Gospel. It's been presented to me in several formats and explanations, but I thought that if anyone, apart from God, would know what that Gospel - the good news - is, it would be the angels. Their credentials are impressive after all. Their unique creation as spirit beings (very often as a messenger from God), has allowed them to be in on God's plan almost from the beginning, and they have played an important role in being witnesses to each step of God's plan, and actually proclaiming it throughout the Bible.
But this is NOT a study on angels. Too often we focus our attention on angels themselves, and fail to pay sufficient attention to the messages they have been given. Just let me lay down their credentials first, so that we can have confidence in what they say.
Yeshua tells us that angels dwell in the presence of God and gaze directly into the face of the Almighty (Matthew. 18:10). The angel Gabriel stated in Luke 1:19, ‘I stand in the presence of God, and I have been sent to speak to you …‘.
The apostle Paul attached distinct importance to the angelic eyewitnesses when he said – ‘beyond all question, the mystery of godliness is great. He (that is, Jesus) appeared in a body, was vindicated by the Spirit, was seen by angels’. (1 Timothy 3:16)
But instead of putting angels under microscopes, we should be putting them in front of microphones - for they have seen God, and more importantly, God has spoken to them words meant for human ears. The word 'angel', as you know, means messenger - and repeatedly throughout man's history, they have been used to pass important messages to us from God.
For example in Matthew 1:20 and Luke 1:30, it was the angel Gabriel who announced to Joseph and Mary the conception of the One who was to become the long-awaited Messiah. Let's read Matthew 1:21, 'She will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus (Yeshua, or Saviour), for He shall save His people from their sins.'
Luke 1:35, 'The Holy Spirit will come upon you (Mary), and the power of the Most High will overshadow you: therefore the Holy Thing which shall be born of you shall be called the Son of God.'
For all of mankind who are under sin and the death penalty, the arrival of the Saviour, as the angel said in Luke 2:10, is indeed Good News of great joy for all peoples.
There are many instances where angels have had direct contact with us, and in their ministering to Jesus, but I still want to just concentrate on their messages.
After Yeshua's crucifixion, death and burial, 'An angel said to the women, Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here: he has risen, just as He said,' (Matthew 28:5-7).
And in Luke 24:6-7 an angel confirms that Yeshua prophesied His own death, means of death, and resurrection, 'Remember how He told you, while He was still with you in Galilee: 'the Son of man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, be crucified, and on the third day be raised again'.'
In Acts 1:10-11, 2 angels announced to Yeshua's disciples that 'this same Yeshua who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen Him go into heaven.'
These scriptures tell me that the angels are very aware of God's plans and movements, and God has used them to proclaim, to announce, to underline, the most important events in history. These spirit creatures speak with authority because God has instructed them to so, and because they have seen His plan unfold before their eyes. Even the demons, and Satan himself, acknowledged that Yeshua was the Son of the Most High, or the Holy One of God, and although they hated and were angry toward Him, they never failed to address Him as deity.
Now the good news (or the Gospel) according to the angels continues in 1 Thessalonians. 4:16, 'For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God, and the dead in Christ shall rise first.' (Some commentaries believe this archangel to be Michael, and it is his voice that heralds the return of Jesus the Christ as King of Kings, and Lord of Lords). And, 'He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David, and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever: His Kingdom will never end' - says Gabriel in Luke 1:32-33.
The angels also believe in, and look forward to, the Bride of Christ, 'Let us rejoice and be glad and give Him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and His bride has made herself ready' (Revelation 19:7) - verse 9 - 'Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb'.
As a sideline - I have heard people express their belief that Yeshua was a created being or an angel (not only in the sense of being a messenger). But in scripture angels are never recipients, or addresses, of prayers. We are told to make our requests know only to God. And in fact, when the apostle John fell to worship at the feet of an angel in Revelation 19:10 and 22:8-9, the angel said, 'Do not do it! I am a fellow servant with you and with your brothers who hold to the testimony of Jesus. Worship God!'
We are told not to worship angels, and if Yeshua was a created angel, we would not worship Him! But in Revelation 4:8, 11 the spirit realm cries out - 'Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come' -' You are worthy. our Lord and God, to receive glory and honour and power, for You created all things, and by Your will they were created and have their being.' Also, in Revelation 5:11-14, the angels worship the Lamb.
One thing I did notice in this study is that the angels do not refer to us as 'the Church', as we refer to each other. They do however call us 'the redeemed' (Revelation 14:3-4), the 'bride of Christ' (Rev. 19:9), 'firstfruits' and 'saints', and they rejoice at every one who repents (Luke 15:10).
Yeshua tells us that the angels have a pivotal role in separating the wicked from the righteous, and in the harvesting of the saints, but repeating again, they are not to be worshipped - all glory and praise belongs to our God! It is HIS plan that is being carried out, but that Good News, that Gospel according to the angels, carries weight and conviction right up to the end when, in Revelation 14:6-7 it says, 'I saw an angel fly in the midst of heaven, having this everlasting gospel to preach to them that dwell on the earth, to every nation, and kindred and tongue, and people. Saying with a loud voice, 'Fear God, and give glory to Him, for the hour of His judgement is come, and worship Him that made heaven and earth, and the sea and the fountains of water'.'
The Gospel is just that - it is the Good News of what God is accomplishing in, and for, us. It is joyous! It is encouraging! It is hope-filled! And it will be accomplished - just as God has promised and the angels have proclaimed!