Additional Titles

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Other
West
Articles
:

NBC Squashes Bob the Tomato’s Free Speech

From Sesame Street To MTV To Immorality

 

More
West
Articles

 

 

 

 

 

UNBIBLICAL IDEAS ABOUT ANGELS

 

 

By Marsha West

December 21, 2007

NewsWithViews.com

"For centuries, angels were seen as messengers for a holy God. Today, they seem to be all-forgiving therapists." --Terry Maddingly

'Tis the season of angels! At Christmastime angels are brought to our attention more than any other time of the year. Angel objects are everywhere you look and they come in just about every shape and size imaginable. Manufacturers offer angel ornaments, cards, fine art, books, jewelry, figurines, cologne, undergarments, sleepwear, body wash and makeup. On one website I found a whole host of angel pins that includes a military and patriotic angel that proudly waves the American flag.

Listen to what Christian apologist Ron Rhodes says about the angel craze in his article "Close Encounters of the Celestial Kind":

"There was a time when angels were mainly relegated to Christmas cards. But not anymore. Angels have infiltrated the popular culture--big time. Indeed, interest in angels is virtually soaring across the religious spectrum in North America--from mainline Christians to New Agers who seek comfort from these heavenly helpers in a troubled and often chaotic world." [1]

Rhode's article was written more than a decade ago, but interest in angels has not waned, thanks largely to New Agers.

Rhodes goes on to say,

"New Agers -- have become almost fanatically excited about angels because they have bought into a plethora of wildly unbiblical ideas about angels that nevertheless have great appeal in today's religious climate. One reason cited for angel popularity in New Age literature is that angels offer people a spirituality that does not involve commitment to God or His laws. Sophy Burnham, author of A Book of Angels, believes the current popularity of angels is 'because we have created this concept of God as punitive, jealous, judgmental,' while 'angels never are. They are utterly compassionate.'" [2]

Compassionate? The truth is, angels are utterly fearsome. In the Bible when someone experienced an angelic visitation, they were gripped with fear. Thus the angel's first words were, "Do not be afraid."

What we know about angels is limited. The Bible tells us that they are powerful supernatural spirit beings without gender, but on occasion they manifest in human form.

Even though angels are spirits, like the deities in ancient mythology, they are given human characteristics. Most angel artists depict angels in the feminine gender. However, in the Bible angels are referred to in the masculine pronouns "he/him." For example, the angel Gabriel took on the form of a man when he appeared to Mary, the mother of Jesus Christ, and also to Zechariah. A male angel appeared to Joseph in dreams. It was a male angel who rolled back the stone at Jesus's tomb. Two angels appeared at the tomb at which Jesus had risen and were perceived by the apostles as men. Cornelius was given instructions by a male angel. Then there was the male angel that engineered Peter's prison break. Jacob wrestled all night with a male angel. The Archangel Michael wrestled with a fallen angel, namely Satan and we all know Satan is no lady. And in the book of Revelation we're told that God will employ an all male army of angels to pour out His wrath on Planet Earth.

The aforementioned are examples, not from mythology, but from the Holy Bible. If angels have a gender the Bible would indicate that they are predominately or universally male. But it doesn't say that. This bears repeating: Angels are genderless. Matthew 22:30 says,

"At the resurrection people will neither marry nor be given in marriage; they will be like the angels in heaven."

Today it has become fashionable for humans to seek out angels. Some Christians even engage in this unbiblical practice! My question for followers of Jesus Christ is why would you want to go to the trouble of contacting an angel when believers have direct access to God? It's true! Listen to what the Bible says,

"Access to God is secured by Christ's atoning work on the cross. Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water" (Hebrews 10:19-22). The Holy Spirit enables our access, "For through him we both have access to the Father by one Spirit" (Ephesians 2:18).

God knows our problems and struggles. He truly understands! His people are encouraged to draw near to Him.

"We find grace and strength to sustain us under the intense pressures of life. Draw near to the throne of grace. Our High Priest (Jesus Christ) is there, eager to restore you." – Pastor Stan Way

So again, why would a serious Christian seek out angels?

The New Age website spiritproject.com claims people seek out angels because they need help from the other side. If someone wants to change but he or she doesn't know how, they can ask their angel to help them out:

"Almost all people like angels. You can talk to your angel as you would with a close friend who listens to your sorrows and wishes. Angels help you with everything - problems of everyday life, spiritual development, your personal contact with your concept of God/dess, your intuition, your abilities, you name it. One aspect of importance in our times - your angel will always have time for you!"[3]

How does someone go about making contact with a supernatural being? Well, the first step is to invite an angel to speak through you. According to spiritproject.com the next step would be to,

"Imagine how he sits behind you encircling you with protection and love, warm, shining, healing, cozy. Imagine how your angel showers you with light, shining cascades of light run down your body, renew, cleanse and refresh you. Thank your angel for hanging in there with you every day!" [3]

If they truly are angels, they would have no choice but to "hang in there," as God's elect holy angels would never disobey a direct command from God Almighty. Psalm 91:11 promises,

"For He will command His angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways."

There's more than one way to skin a cat. Messagesfromtheangels.com offers these tips from a so-called angel,

Step 1 Pray…Pray foor the truth and the gift of spiritual hearing. Let us know your concerns and requests. Pray with an open heart and mind.
Step 2 Breathe…We ccome to you on your breath- just be of serene nature. Let your body relax as you breathe deeply and easily.
Step 3 Listen…We coome to you as an inner knowing. We will bring you comfort and guidance. Quiet your mind so that you can listen to our gentle voices. (For steps 4-7 see link 4 below.)

Some people imagine their angel sitting behind them. Still others listen to their "inner knowing." What they have in common is the belief that their "teacher and guide" is an angel. I hate to rain on anyone's parade, but what if the teacher happens to be a disgraced angel who "masquerades as an angel of light" the scriptures warn us about? The next time you decide to call on an angel for help and guidance keep in mind that the Bible makes it abundantly clear that Satan and his minions are characterized as ferocious wolves that hide beneath sheep's skin to deceive their prey!

Here's another piece of advice from an angel channeller:

"[Q]uiet your mind, body, and spirit…to achieve an attitude of openness and receptivity that will enable you to hear their words of guidance and their special teachings for you."

Openness and receptivity to whom? Demonic spirits, perhaps?

In a commentary I wrote about angels, Beware of Angels from the Dark Side [5], I commented on the participation of demons in the practice of contacting so-called angels:

"The principle goal of demonic spirits that imitate angels is to confuse people as to their modus operandi. If people can be convinced that the realm of the occult is 'safe' they'll be much more willing to experiment. But they're not safe! A person who channels an angel (or a spirit guide) is possessed by a control spirit every bit as much as if they were a medium or a trans-channeller. The messages and phenomena found in angel channeling and in mediumism are essentially the same."

Forewarned is forearmed.

As for praying to angels, Scripture does not teach us to pray to spirits! In Matthew 6:6 Jesus made this statement to his followers,

"But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you." (See also Luke 11:1-4)

Christians can come directly to God because of Christ!

The Apostle Paul chastised the Colossians for engaging in angel worship. Look at verse 18:

"Do not let anyone who delights in false humility and the worship of angels disqualify you for the prize."

In his article "Making Distinctions: A Warning Against Mixing Beliefs" Rick Wade explains the reason for angel worship:

"Some Greek philosophers had taught that the One, or the ultimate being, was too pure to get close to evil matter. So there were many levels of lesser beings between the One and the material universe. It was a simple step to associate angels with these beings. If people couldn't approach God, maybe they could these intermediate beings. Hence, angel worship.


Advertisement

"[F]alse teachers were promoting a special knowledge that apparently only a few had. Paul speaks of people puffed up with idle notions, in verse 18. He also mentions the "appearance of wisdom" in verse 23. He responds that in Christ "are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge" (v. 3). This knowledge is available to all who are in Christ, and provides no reason for our being puffed up (1 Cor. 2:16).

"These three beliefs developed into what is called Gnosticism. Paul saw this as a very grave danger. Why? Just because Christians might be deprived of some rightful pleasures? Well, that was a problem. But something much more important was at stake. Because of these beliefs, the person and work of Christ was diminished." [6]

Now, getting back to Mary. Note that in the Bible she made no attempt to contact Gabriel. Here's what happened:

"The angel went to her and said, 'Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you'" (Luke 1:28).

Sending the angel to Mary was entirely God's idea!

"The God of the Bible is the only God who comes looking for us (because, of course, He is the only God that actually exists). Every other 'god' must be searched out, found and their blessing earned." -- Anonymous

It is patently absurd for followers of Jesus Christ to attempt to contact angels - or dead relatives! Christians must focus their attention on the Lord Jesus Christ. How do Christians receive instructions from Him? Through God's Word, the Bible.

"Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path." (Psalm 119:105).

Why is post-modern Christianity sorely lacking in discernment? Because a large number of Christians don't read and study the Bible. As a result they have no clue what God says about mysticism – or anythinng else! Additionally, many Christians have no interest in attending a church where they'll hear expository teaching from the pulpit. What they prefer is to hear the pastor preach on is their "felt needs." Moreover, Christians spend their free time reading best-selling books and novels while God's Word goes largely ignored. So, is it any wonder the Church lacks discernment?

And by the way, when professing Christians are advised that certain practices (yoga, for example) are unbiblical, instead of having a humble heart they get their hackles up and react defensively. From my own experience many of them will continue dabbling in occult practices even though they're aware that what they're doing could be spiritually damaging. I know a number of Christians who deceive themselves into believing that no harm is done!

I'll close with an allegory I received in an email the other day. It's an excellent illustration of what will happen to the Church if professing Christians continue to ignore those who warn about the dangers of mixing New Age spirituality, which supports the world of the occult, with orthodox Christianity:

A mouse looked through the crack in the wall to see the farmer and his wife open a package.

What food might this contain, the mouse wondered? He was devastated to discover it was a mousetrap.

Retreating to the farmyard, the mouse proclaimed the warning: There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!

The chicken clucked and scratched, raised her head and said, "Mr. Mouse, I can tell this is a grave concern to you, but it is of no consequence to me. I cannot be bothered by it."

The mouse turned to the pig and told him, "There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!"

The pig sympathized, but said, "I am so very sorry, Mr. Mouse, but there is nothing I can do about it but pray. Be assured you are in my prayers."

The mouse turned to the cow and said, "There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!"

The cow said, "Wow, Mr. Mouse. I'm sorry for you, but it's no skin off my nose."

So the mouse returned to the house, head down and dejected, to face the farmer's mousetrap alone.

That very night a sound was heard throughout the house -- like the sound of a mousetrap catching its prey.

The farmer's wife rushed to see what was caught. In the darkness, she did not see it was a venomous snake whose tail the trap had caught.

The snake bit the farmer's wife. The farmer rushed her to the hospital, and she returned home with a fever.

Everyone knows you treat a fever with fresh chicken soup, so the farmer took his hatchet to the farmyard for the soup's main ingredient.

But his wife's sickness continued, so friends and neighbors came to sit with her around the clock. To feed them, the farmer butchered the pig.

The farmer's wife did not get well; she died. So many people came for her funeral; the farmer had the cow slaughtered to provide enough meat for all of them.

The mouse looked upon it all from his crack in the wall with great sadness. (Author unknown.)

Subscribe to the NewsWithViews Daily News Alerts!


Enter Your E-Mail Address:

"The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with the work of Satan displayed in all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders, and in every sort of evil that deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness" (Second Thessalonians 2:9-12).

Notes:

[1] Close Encounters of the Celestial Kind By Ron Rhodes.
[3] Spiritproject.com website
[4] Messagefromtheangels.com website
[5] Beware of Angels from the Dark Side By Marsha West
[6] Making Distinctions: A Warning Against Mixing Beliefs By Rick Wade

Recommended Reading:

1, How Do Popular Angels Support the World of the Occult? By John Ankerberg and John Weldon
2, The Priesthood of All Believers By Derek Gentle
3, Making Distinctions: A Warning Against Mixing Beliefs By Rick Wade



© 2007 Marsha West - All Rights Reserved

Sign Up For Free E-Mail Alerts

E-Mails are used strictly for NWVs alerts, not for sale


Marsha West is the Founder and Editor of the E-Mail Brigade News Report, an online news report for conservative people of faith. Marsha is a freelance writer specializing in Christian worldview. She is a regular contributor to NewsWithViews.com, Alainsnewsletter.com, CapitolHillCoffeeHouse.com, plus her commentaries appear in MichNews.com and bibleteacher.org.

Marsha is also designer and webmaster of a Christian apologetics website, On Solid Rock Resources. She is currently writing a series of children's books for homeschoolers. Marsha and her husband reside in historic Jacksonville Oregon.

E-mail: EMbrigade@aol.com

 


 

Home

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Bible tells us that they are powerful supernatural spirit beings without gender, but on occasion they manifest in human form.