The Angels of God Class 4: The Angels are your Friends
See how angels accommodated Abraham Genesis 18:1-2 1 Thenthe LORD appearedto him by the terebinth trees of Mamre, as he was sitting in the tent door in the heat of the day. 2 So he lifted his eyes and looked, and behold,three men were standing by him;and when he saw them, he ran from the tent door to meet them, and bowed himself to the ground, 4 "Please let a little water be brought, andwash your feet,and rest yourselves under the tree. 5 "And I will bring amorsel of bread,that you may refresh your hearts. After that you may pass by, inasmuch as you have come to your servant."They said, "Do as you have said." 8 So he took butter and milk and the calf which he had prepared, and set it before them; and he stood by them under the treeas they ate.
Genesis 18:12-13 12 Therefore Sarahlaughed within herself,saying, "After I have grown old, shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also?" 13 Andthe LORD said to Abraham, "Why did Sarah laugh,saying, 'Shall I surely bear a child, since I am old?‘ 1 Peter 3:5-6 5 For in this manner, in former times, the holy women who trusted in God also adorned themselves, being submissive to their own husbands, 6 asSarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord,whose daughters you are if you do good and are not afraid with any terror. We can’t fool angels. They read our thoughts. They know our motives.
Genesis 18:17-19 17 And the LORD said,"Shall I hide from Abraham what I am doing, 18 "since Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? 19 "For I have known him, in order that he may command his childrenand his household after him, that they keep the way of the LORD, to do righteousness and justice, that the LORD may bring to Abraham what He has spoken to him." Note the discussion and decision-making of the angels, as they work together in God’s service!
Genesis 18:20-22 20 And the LORD said, "Because the outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grave, 21 "I will go down now and seewhether they have done altogether according to the outcry against it that has come to Me;and if not, I will know." 22 Then the men turned away from there and went toward Sodom,but Abraham still stood before the LORD. Angels are not omniscient – they need to be present to see what is happening. That’s why they are with us all the time!
Genesis 18:23-26 23 And Abraham came near and said, "Would You also destroy the righteous with the wicked? 24 "Suppose there were fifty righteous within the city; would You also destroy the place and not spare it for the fifty righteous that were in it? 25 "Far be it from You to do such a thing as this, to slay the righteous with the wicked, so that the righteous should be as the wicked; far be it from You!Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?" 26 So the LORD said, "If I findin Sodom fifty righteous within the city, then I will spareall the place for their sakes." Look at the power of prayer! Angels respond to our desires to save our family and friends!
Genesis 19:1-2 1 Nowthe two angels came to Sodomin the evening, and Lot was sitting in the gate of Sodom. When Lot saw them, he rose to meet them, and he bowed himself with his face toward the ground. 2 And he said, "Here now,my lords,please turn in to your servant's house and spend the night, andwash your feet;then you may rise early and go on your way." And they said, "No, but we will spend the night in the open square.“(they came down to see for themselves!) 3 But he insisted strongly; so they turned in to him and entered his house. Then he made them a feast, and baked unleavened bread, andthey ate. Note how accommodating the angels were to Lot. They do respond to our wants and needs.
Genesis 19:15-17 15 When the morning dawned,the angels urged Lot to hurry,saying, "Arise, take your wife and your two daughters who are here, lest you be consumed in the punishment of the city." 16 Andwhile he lingered, the men took hold of his hand, his wife's hand, and the hands of his two daughters, the LORD being merciful to him,and they brought him out and set him outside the city. 17 So it came to pass, when they had brought them outside, that he said, "Escape for your life! Do not look behind you nor stay anywhere in the plain. Escape to the mountains, lest you be destroyed.” Angels don’t usually force us because they want us to make the good decisions. There may be times when they force our hands out of compassion and mercy.
Remember: Lot was righteous! 2 Peter 2:6-9 6 and turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah into ashes, condemned them to destruction, making them an example to those who afterward would live ungodly; 7 anddelivered righteous Lot, who was oppressed by the filthy conduct of the wicked 8 (forthat righteous man, dwelling among them, tormented his righteous soul from day to day by seeing and hearing their lawless deeds)-- 9 then the Lord knows howto deliver the godly out of temptationsand to reserve the unjust under punishment for the day of judgment,
Genesis 19:18-22 18 Then Lot said to them, "Please, no, my lords! 19 "Indeed now, your servant has found favor in your sight, and you have increased your mercy which you have shown me by saving my life; but I cannot escape to the mountains, lest some evil overtake me and I die. 20 "See now, this city is near enough to flee to, and it is a little one;please let me escape there(is it not a little one?) and my soul shall live." 21And he said to him, "See, I have favored you concerning this thing also, in that I will not overthrow this city for which you have spoken. 22 "Hurry, escape there.For I cannot do anything until you arrive there."Therefore the name of the city was called Zoar. The angel responded to Lot’s request, and had to wait for Lot to get to Zoar! Patience, kindness & mercy.
Genesis 19:25-26 25 SoHe overthrew those cities,all the plain, all the inhabitants of the cities, and what grew on the ground. 26 But his wife looked back behind him, and she became a pillar of salt. Angels are merciful, but they are also to be feared for their justice. Imagine the disappointment of Lot’s wife’s angel when she looked back Years of patient work ended in a moment by a bad choice. Let’s commit today to appreciate all the angels do for us and try not to let them down by our choices.
Characteristics of Angels revealed in Genesis 18-19 • Can appear as normal men • Want to save us • Can develop a personal relationship with us • Can read our thoughts • Need to be present to know what’s happening • Willing to reason with us • Willing to accommodate us (within reason) • Discuss with each other to make decisions • Are extremely patient & merciful with us
Genesis 20:1-3 1 And Abraham journeyed from there to the South, and dwelt between Kadesh and Shur, and stayed in Gerar. 2 Now Abraham said of Sarah his wife, "She is my sister." And Abimelech king of Gerar sent and took Sarah. 3 ButGod came to Abimelech in a dream by night,and said to him, "Indeed you are a dead man because of the woman whom you have taken, for she is a man's wife." Angel protected Sarah and made sure the covenant with Abraham would be fulfilled.
Genesis 24:7 7 "The LORD God of heaven, who took me from my father's house and from the land of my family, and who spoke to me and swore to me, saying, 'To your descendants I give this land,'He will send His angel before you,and you shall take a wife for my son from there. 39 "And I said to my master, 'Perhaps the woman will not follow me.' 40 "But he said to me, 'The LORD, before whom I walk,will send His angel with you and prosper your way;and you shall take a wife for my son from my family and from my father's house. Note Abraham’s awareness of the angels and his confidence that God would work through them. We need to walk like Abraham.
Genesis 45:4-5 4 And Joseph said to his brothers, "Please come near to me." So they came near. Then he said: "I am Joseph your brother, whom you sold into Egypt. 5 "But now, do not therefore be grieved nor angry with yourselves because you sold me here;for God sent me before you to preserve life. Genesis 50:19-20 19 Joseph said to them, "Do not be afraid, for am I in the place of God? 20 "But as for you, you meant evil against me;but God meant it for good,in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive. When we feel the presence of the angels and confidently trust they are in control, it diffuses our anger, pain, frustration and jealousy we experience in our dealings with one another. The angels are working for our good!
1 Kings 19:4-7 4 But he himself went a day's journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a broom tree. Andhe prayed that he might die,and said, "It is enough! Now, LORD, take my life, for I am no better than my fathers!" 5 Then as he lay and slept under a broom tree, suddenlyan angel touched him,and said to him, "Arise and eat." 6 Then he looked, and there by his head was a cake baked on coals, and a jar of water. So he ate and drank, and lay down again. 7 Andthe angel of the LORD came back the second time, and touched him, and said, "Arise and eat,because the journey is too great for you." Note the compassion and kindness of the angel – even though Elijah was on a mission to plead with God “against Israel” (Rom 11:1)
2 Kings 1:3, 15 3 Butthe angel of the LORD said to Elijahthe Tishbite, "Arise, go up to meet the messengers of the king of Samaria, and say to them, 'Is it because there is no God in Israel that you are going to inquire of Baal-Zebub, the god of Ekron?' 15 And the angel of the LORD said to Elijah, "Go down with him; do not be afraid of him."So he arose and went down with him to the king. The angel encouraged Elijah to meet with Ahaziah. Note how gentle and patient the angel was with Elijah. We must learn to treat each other this way to be useful ministers of God in the kingdom!
Matthew 18:10 10 "Take heed that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that in heaven their angels always see the face of My Fatherwho is in heaven. Every brother, sister, and young person has an angel assigned to them. God doesn’t leave anything to chance! Be aware of their presence, thank God for them, and don’t frustrate their work. Angels don’t know the final outcome anymore than we do today (1 Cor 3) until the fire tests our work.
Genesis 28:12-15 12 Then he dreamed, and behold, a ladder was set up on the earth, and its top reached to heaven; and there the angels of God were ascending and descending on it. 13 And behold, the LORD stood above it and said: "I am the LORD God of Abraham your father and the God of Isaac; the land on which you lie I will give to you and your descendants. 14 "Also your descendants shall be as the dust of the earth; you shall spread abroad to the west and the east, to the north and the south; and in you and in your seed all the families of the earth shall be blessed. 15 "Behold, I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land; for I will not leave you until I have done what I have spoken to you." This angel stayed with Jacob all his life
Acts 12:6-10 6 And when Herod was about to bring him (Peter) out, that night Peter was sleeping, bound with two chains between two soldiers; and the guards before the door were keeping the prison. 7 Now behold, an angel of the Lord stood by him, and a light shone in the prison;and he struck Peter on the side and raised him up, saying, "Arise quickly!" And his chains fell off his hands. 8 Then the angel said to him, "Gird yourself and tie on your sandals"; and so he did. And he said to him, "Put on your garment and follow me." 9 So he went out and followed him, and did not know that what was done by the angel was real, but thought he was seeing a vision. 10 When they were past the first and the second guard posts, they came to the iron gate that leads to the city, which opened to them of its own accord; and they went out and went down one street, and immediately the angel departed from him. Note the power and compassion of the angel
Acts 12:13-16 13 And as Peter knocked at the door of the gate, a girl named Rhoda came to answer. 14 When she recognized Peter's voice, because of her gladness she did not open the gate, but ran in and announced that Peter stood before the gate. 15 But they said to her, "You are beside yourself!" Yet she kept insisting that it was so. So they said, "It is his angel." 16 Now Peter continued knocking; and when they opened the door and saw him, they were astonished. They knew Peter had an angel watching over him
Exodus 33:1-3 1 Then the LORD said to Moses, "Depart and go up from here, you and the people whom you have brought out of the land of Egypt, to the land of which I swore to Abraham,Isaac, and Jacob, saying, 'To your descendants I will give it.' 2 "And I will send My Angel before you, and I will drive out the Canaaniteand the Amorite and the Hittite and the Perizzite and the Hivite and the Jebusite. 3 "Go up to a land flowing with milk and honey; for I will not go up in your midst, lest I consume you on the way for you are a stiff-necked people." Angels send other angels on missions. This angel was running out of patience with this stiff-necked people!
Exodus 33:9-11 9 And it came to pass, when Moses entered the tabernacle, that the pillar of cloud descended and stood at the door of the tabernacle, and the LORD talked with Moses. 10 All the people saw the pillar of cloud standing at the tabernacle door,and all the people rose and worshiped, each man in his tent door. 11 So the LORD spoke to Moses face to face, as a man speaks to his friend. And he would return to the camp, but his servant Joshua the son of Nun, a young man, did not depart from the tabernacle. Moses knew this angel personally
Exodus 33:12-16 12 Then Moses said to the LORD, "See, You say to me, 'Bring up this people.' But You have not let me know whom You will send with me.Yet You have said, 'I know you by name, and you have also found grace in My sight.' 13 "Now therefore, I pray, if I have found grace in Your sight, show me now Your way, that I may know You and that I may find grace in Your sight. And consider that this nation is Your people." 14 And He said, "My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest." 15 Then he said to Him, "If Your Presence does not go with us, do not bring us up from here. 16 "For how then will it be known that Your people and I have found grace in Your sight, except You go with us?So we shall be separate, Your people and I, from all the people who are upon the face of the earth." Moses really wanted this angel to stay with him!
Exodus 33:17-20 17 So the LORD said to Moses, "I will also do this thing that you have spoken; for you have found grace in My sight, and I know you by name." 18 And he said, "Please, show me Your glory." 19 Then He said, "I will make all My goodnesspass before you, and I will proclaim the name of the LORD before you. I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion." 20 But He said, "You cannot see My face; for no man shall see Me, and live." This angel mercifully agreed to stay with Moses and help him personally lead the nation. This angel was one of the most powerful manifestations of our heavenly Father.
Exodus 24:1-11 1 Now He said to Moses, "Come up to the LORD, you and Aaron, Nadab and Abihu,and seventy of the elders of Israel, and worship from afar. 2 "And Moses alone shall come near the LORD,but they shall not come near; nor shall the people go up with him." 9 Then Moses went up, also Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu,and seventy of the elders of Israel, 10 and they saw the God of Israel.And there was under His feet as it were a paved work of sapphire stone, and it was like the very heavens in its clarity. 11 But on the nobles of the children of Israel He did not lay His hand. So they saw God, and they ate and drank.
Leviticus 10:1-3 1 Then Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, each took his censer and put fire in it, put incense on it, and offered profane fire before the LORD, which He had not commanded them. 2 So fire went out from the LORDand devoured them, and they died before the LORD. 3 And Moses said to Aaron, "This is what the LORD spoke, saying:'By those who come near Me I must be regarded as holy; and before all the people I must be glorified.'"So Aaron held his peace. Nadab & Abihu had seen the angel, but it didn’t change their lives. Feeling the presence of the angels with us will help us to glorify & honor God at all times
Judges 6:11-12 11 Now the Angel of the Lord came and sat under the terebinth tree which was in Ophrah, which belonged to Joash the Abiezrite, while his son Gideon threshed wheat in the winepress, in order to hide it from the Midianites. 12 And the Angel of the Lord appeared to him, and said to him, "The Lord is with you, you mighty man of valor!" Watch how this angel encourages Gideon and strengthens his faith to work for God
Judges 6:17-18 17 Then he said to Him, "If now I have found favor in Your sight, then show me a sign that it is You who talk with me. 18 Do not depart from here, I pray, until I come to You and bring out my offering and set it before You.” And He said, "I will wait until you come back." Angels are extremely patient! Waiting for our faith to grow
Judges 6:20-22 20 The Angel of God said to him, "Take the meat and the unleavened bread and lay them on this rock, and pour out the broth." And he did so. 21 Then the Angel of the Lord put out the end of the staff that was in His hand, and touched the meat and the unleavened bread; and fire rose out of the rock and consumed the meat and the unleavened bread. And the Angel of the Lord departed out of his sight. 22 Now Gideon perceived that He was the Angel of the Lord. So Gideon said, "Alas, O Lord God! For I have seen the Angel of the Lord face to face." Note the compassion and kindness of this angel. He patiently worked with Gideon and accommodated Gideon’s requests to strengthen his faith.
Daniel 8:17-19 17 So he came near where I stood, and when he came I was afraid and fell on my face; but he said to me,"Understand, son of man, that the vision refers to the time of the end." 18 Now, as he was speaking with me, I was in a deep sleep with my face to the ground; but he touched me, and stood me upright. 19 And he said, "Look, I am making known to you what shall happen in the latter timeof the indignation; for at the appointed time the end shall be. Angels want to help! Like true friends they touch, strengthen, and help us understand.
Angels could not redeem us Galatians 3:19-20 19 What purpose then does the law serve? It was added because of transgressions, till the Seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was appointed through angels by the hand of a mediator. 20 Now a mediator does not mediate for one only, but God is one. Angels cannot make us one with God
Hebrews 2:9, 14-18 9 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone. 14 Inasmuch then as the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He Himself likewise shared in the same, that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, 15 and release those who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage. 16 For indeed He does not give aid to angels, but He does give aid to the seed of Abraham. 17 Therefore, in all things He had to be made like His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people. 18 For in that He Himself has suffered, being tempted, He is able to aid those who are tempted.
Lessons for Us: • Angels respond to our desires & prayers – so don’t give up…..pray continually….they might accommodate your desires • Angels are very merciful, but they can’t extend mercy to those to look back and want this world more than God’s family • Angels are extremely patient with people & now is our time to practice living like angels