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What Does the Bible Say About Angels?

In Hebrews 13:1-2, the author encourages us to be hospitable to strangers because we never know if that stranger is an angel in disguise. 

“Let brotherly love continue. Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some have unwittingly entertained angels.”—Hebrews 13:1-2 

Throughout history, people often exalted angels to the point of deity. That was the problem for the ancient Hebrews who received this letter. They had embraced Jesus as the Messiah, but their infatuation with angels had led to idolization.  

Only once angels are in their proper place do you put Jesus in His place. So, what does the Bible say about angels, and what role do they play in our lives today?  

Angels and the Bible 

All the intel we need on angelic beings is in Scripture. Angels are created beings with specific purposes as God’s messengers and ministers. 

1. Angels worship God. 

“But when He again brings the firstborn into the world, He says: ‘Let all the angels of God worship Him.’”—Hebrews 1:6 

2. Angels rejoice in God’s work. 

“Worthy is the Lamb who was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom, and strength and honor and glory and blessing!”—Revelation 5:12 

3. Angels serve God. 

“Bless the Lord, you His angels, who excel in strength, who do His word, heeding the voice of His word.”—Psalm 103:20 

4. Angels are instruments of God’s judgments. 

“And I saw the seven angels who stand before God, and to them were given seven trumpets.”—Revelation 8:2 

5. Angels bring answers to prayer.  

“But the angel said to him, ‘Do not be afraid, Zacharias, for your prayer is heard; and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John.’”—Luke 1:13 

6. Angels are God’s ministers. 

“Then the devil left Him, and behold, angels came and ministered to Him.”—Matthew 4:11 

7. Angels watch over God’s people. 

“For He shall give His angels charge over you, to keep you in all your ways.”—Psalm 91:11 

Just as God has an angelic army to serve Him, Satan also has an army of fallen angels to serve his purposes on earth.  

The Physical and the Spiritual Realm 

The Bible teaches about two realms, the physical and the spiritual. Angels can travel back and forth between the two realms. When they enter the temporal realm, they sometimes take the form of a human body to interact with us. You have likely interacted with an angel without even knowing it.  

As we study what the Bible says about angels, Ephesians 6:12 gives us insight into the battle happening in the spiritual realm. The author says, “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.”  

Although believers cannot see this battle, we can feel the intensity as we fight against our sinful nature and work to become more like Jesus. Part of this battle is the deception Satan has used to distort our culture’s view of angels and their role in our lives.  

An open Bible on a table showing a passage about angels.

Angels and the Culture 

The figurines and portrayals of angels in our culture are profoundly distorted from what the Bible says about them. We live in a time when angels are everywhere in pop culture, the arts, and the media. Some people worship angels as deities. Others are increasingly infatuated with tarot cards, psychics, palm readers, and people who claim to talk to the dead.  

In Deuteronomy 18:9-14, Jesus warns that people who do those things are an abomination to the Lord. The works described are demonic and deceptive and are a product of the work of fallen angels. 2 Corinthians 11:14-15 warns us that Satan transforms himself into an angel of light. He hates the children of God, and he masquerades as an angel of light to lead them to destruction. 

Satan has changed his tactics from generation to generation and culture to culture, but his purpose remains the same: to steal the worship of God, to divert your attention away from God, and to cause you to doubt what is truly from God.  

Satan’s Angelic Army 

Revelation 12:4 says that Satan led a third of the angels with him when he rebelled against God.  

“His tail drew a third of the stars of heaven and threw them to the earth.” 

Satan and his angelic army want to overcome you by deceiving you. Deception and distortion are everywhere. We must be equipped to identify the works of God’s spirit and the works of Satan’s fallen angels. The Bible gives us ways to guard against Satan’s deception. 

  1. Beware of the doctrines of demons. 

“Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons…”—1 Timothy 4:1 

There are deceiving spirits everywhere in the world. We must understand the Word of God to discern what is true because the Spirit of God will never say anything contrary to the Word of God.  

2. Test the spirits. 

“Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.”—1 John 4:1 

The way you test the spirits is through the Word of God. Do not take the world’s portrayal of angels as the truth. Instead, compare the secular portrayal or message to God’s Word. If it does not align with God’s Word, it is not from Him. 

3. Pray for those who are blind to the truth. 

“But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.”—2 Corinthians 4:4 

Jesus wants to bring salvation and redemption, and He wants to use believers to do that. He desires that none should perish because of Satan’s deception. You can pray for those in your life who are far from God. Pray that He would open their eyes so they can see who Jesus is, put Him in His proper place, and recognize that He is all supreme. 

Takeaway 

The Bible reveals that God sends His angels to be messengers and ministers to His people. However, Satan and his fallen angel army masquerade as angels of light, trying to deceive us by distorting the truth. To guard against being swept away by the cultural portrayals of angels, you must believe that only Jesus has the power to change your life.  

Do you want to learn more about why Jesus is better than angels? Sign up to receive your free study guide through the book of Hebrews!