Angels in our Daily Lives.
As I have shown, the Bible clearly stands on the side of those who believe that angels are real. God enters our tragedies. He opens the windows of heaven to interact with the earth. God still sends His angels to minister to the Church. They work in ways unsung and unseen. The writer of the epistle of the Hebrews even spoke of Christians who welcomed strangers into their homes and that by so doing, "some have entertained angels without knowing it." (Hebr. 13:2) We cherish the ministry of Christ for our salvation. He is our only Mediator. What the apostle Peter said in his Jerusalem sermon is still true today, "Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved." (Acts 4:12) But this truth should not lead to the conclusion that God can no longer use the ministry of angels to do His will. We should not let New Agers capture angelology to give it a life of its own and paganize it.
The active ministry of angels is encouraging for the Church as we come to the end of the most violent century in world history. And the 20th century has also been the worst century of anti-Christian persecution in history. It is well documented that Christians are now the most persecuted religious group on earth today. China and Islam Middle East nations are the worst offenders. Michael Horowitz wrote in the introduction of Paul Marshall's disturbing and moving book Their Blood Cries Out. The Untold Story of Persecution Against Christians in the Modern World: "The mounting persecution of Christians eerily parallels the persecution of Jews, my people, during much of Europe's history." Today, minority Christian communities have become chosen scapegoats in radical Islamic and remnant Communist regimes, where they are demonized and caricatured through populist campaigns of hate and terror.
Christians are not alone in their spiritual battle. Sometimes God shows His care for His people by dispatching angels to intervene on behalf of His suffering saints in need of heavenly encouragement. When the apostle Paul sailed to Rome to face Ceasar, a fierce storm theatened to wreck the ship. Crew and passengers had given up all hope of being saved. But all hope was not lost. God intervened. He sent an angel to Paul with the message, "Do not be afraid, Paul, you must stand trial before Ceasar; and God has graciously given you the lives of all who sail with you." (Acts 27:24)
God knows our weakness, our perils, the enemies we constantly face, the threats to our faith. Without His help we would fall into despair and be overpowered by the Spirit of this Age. In his mercy, immeasurable goodness, and kindness He sustains us and has given us innumerable guardians to help us along our journey. As Calvin put it:
Today the powers of evil seem to have the upper hand. The fallen angels are influencing our culture world and the nearer we come to the close of history the more frantic their demonic activity. Therefore we should keep in mind that God's powerful angels are active also; and their victory has been secured by Christ. (1 John 3:8) Soon the Lord will come with His angels and overcome His enemies. I believe that Thomas F. Torrance's summarizes the argument well:
Christianity Today, December 12, 1980.
Christianity Today, April 5, 1993.
Christianity Today, December 12, 1994.
Christianity Today, July 17, 1995.
Christian Week, March 1, 1994.
First Things. A Monthly Journal of Religion and Public Life. March 1997, Number 71.
Globe & Mail, Saturday, July 9, 1994.
Aalders, W. Scheppingof Geschiedenis. Over de tengestelling tussen de christelyke hoop en het moderne vooruitgangsgeloof.
J. H. Voorhoeve. Den Haag.
Aalders, W. In Verzet tegen de tyd. Een protest tegen de van de verwereldlyking van God en de vergoddelyking wereld. J. H. Voorhoeve. Den Haag.
Bavinck, H. Gereformeerde Dogmatiek. Tweede Deel, J. H. Bos, Kampen, 1908.
Berkouwer, G. C. Sin. William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company Grand Rapids, Mich. 1971.
Blauw, J. Gezanten van de Hemel. De Het Bybles Getuigenis Aangaande De Engelen. Bosch & Keuning, Baarn.
Boon, R. Over de goede engelen of De ontmaskering van een pedant ongeloof een cultuur-kritiesche studie. Uitgevery Boekencentrum B. V. , 's Gravenhage, 1983.
Bouhuys K. & Deurloo, K. A. , Taalwegen en Dwaalwegen. BybelseTrefwoorden. W. Ten Have N. V. , Amsterdam,1967.
Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion. Two Volumes. The Westminster Press, Philadelphia, 1960.
Catechism of the Catholic Church. Double Day, New York, 1994.
De Bondt, A. De Satan. Bosch & Keuning, Baarn.
De Ridder, Richard R. , Discipling the Nations. Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, Mich. 1971.
Dyk, K. Om't Eeuwig Welbehagen. (De Leer der Praedestinatie). N. V. Dagblad en Drukkery De Standaard, Amsterdam, 1925.
Eastman, Dick. Beyond Imagination. A Simple Plan to Save the World. Chosen Books, Grand Rapids, Mich. 1997.
Graham, Billy. Angels: God's Secret Agents. Pocket Book edition. Doubleday & Company, New York, 1977.
Henry, F. H. , God, Revelation and Authority, Vol. VI, God Who Stand and Stays. Part Two. Word Books, Publisher, Waco, Texas,1983.
Hughes, Tomas Patrick. Dictionary of Islam. A cyclopaedia of the doctrines, rites ceremonies etc; of the Islamic Religion. Islamic Book Publishers, P. O. Box 20210, Safat Kuwait. 1885.
Kakes, H. Waar Zyn De Engelen Nu? J. H. Kok, Kampen.
Kamphuis, J. Uitzicht uit het dode dale. Uitgevery De Vuurbaak,Groningen,1974.
Kistemaker, Simon J. New Testament Commentary, Exposition of the Epistle to Hebrews. Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, Mich. 1984.
Knight, George A. F. Christelyke Theologie van het Oude
Testament. Aula-Boeken, Urecht/Antwerpen, 1961.
Korem, Danny and Meier, Paul. The Fakers. Exploding the Myths of the Supernatural. Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, Mich. 1980.
Kuyper, A. De Engelen Gods. Hoveker & Wormser, Amsterdam.
Kuyper, A. Van De Voleinding. Eerste Deel, J. H. Kok, Kampen, 1929.
Leith John H. ed. Creeds of the Churches. A Reader in Christian Doctrine from the Bible to the Present. Anchor Books, Garden City, New York, 1963.
Lee, Francis, Nigel. The Origin and Destiny of Man. Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Co, 1977.
Lindeboom, A. M. In Het Uur van Bezinning. 2/ in Jezus ingedoopt. Buyten & Schipperheyn, Amsterdam, 1973.
Marshall, Paul. Their Blood Cries Out. The Untold Story of the Persecution Against Christians in the Modern World. Word Publishing, Dallas, Texas, 1997.
Mbita, John S. New Testament Eschatology in African Background. A Study of the Encounter between New Testament theology and African Traditional Concepts. SPCK, London, Great Britain, 1978.
Owen, John. An Exposition of the Epistle to the Hebrews. Edited by W. H. Goold. Vol. III, Hebrews 1:1-3:6. Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, Mich. 1980.
Packer J. I. & Wilkinson, Loren, ed. Alive To God. Studies in Spirituality. InterVarsity Press, Downers Grove, 111, 1992.
Pink, Athur W. The Sovereignty of God. The Banner of Truth Trust, London, Great Britain, 1961.
Popma, K. J. Evangelie en Geschiedenis. Buyten & Schiperheyn, Amsterdam, 1972.
Quoist, Michael. Christ Is Alive! Image Books, Garden City, New York, 1972.
Sarles, Ken. L. A Theological Evaluation of the Prosperity Gospel. Bibliotheca Sacra. Dallas, Texas. October-December 1986. Vol. 143, No. 572.
Sumrall, Lester. The Reality of Angels. Thomas Nelson Publishers, Nashville, Tenn. 1982.
Van der Zanden, L. De Mensch Als Beeld Gods. J. H. Kok, Kampen, Van Niftrik. De Hemel. Over de ruimtelykheid van God. Uigevery G. F. Callenbach, N. V. , Nykerk, 1972.
Walsh, Michael. Dictionary of Catholic Devotions. Harper, San Francisco, 1993.
Wentsel, B. De Koers van de kerk in een horizontalistische tydperk. I, J. H. Kok, Kampen, 1972.
Zimmerman, Paul A. , Darwin, Evolution and Creation. Concordia Publishing House, Saint Louis, Missouri, 1959.
Zwi Werblowsky, R. J. and Wigoder, Geoffrey. The Encyclopedia of the Jewish Religion Massada Press
|To continue please click on the next number|