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John Calvin puts forward a very simple reason why love is the greatest gift: “Because faith and hope are our own: love is diffused among others.” In other words, faith and hope benefit the possessor, but love always benefits another. In John 13:34–35 Jesus says, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” Love always requires an “other” as an object; love cannot remain within itself, and that is part of what makes love the greatest gift.

What Does the Bible Teach About Angels?

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by Ron Rhodes


1) The NT speaks of angels more than 165 times; the OT more than 100 times.


2) The angels were created prior to God’s creation of the earth (Jb 38:7; Ps 148:2-5)


3) Humans do not become angels at the moment of death (1 Co 6:3; 13:1)


4) All the angels were created by God as good angels (Gn 1:31)


5) The angels were apparently subjected to a period of probation. Some angels remained loyal to God’ others did not.


6) An angel rebellion, headed by the evil one, arose against God. Apparently the evil one became so impressed with himself that he wanted to take God’s place. He came to be referred to as Satan, meaning “adversary.” One third of the angels followed him in this rebellion (Ezk 28:11-19; 2 Pt 2:4; Rv 12:3-4, 10), becoming what the Bible calls demons.


7) The holy angels live in heaven (Is 6:1-6; Dn 7:10; Heb 12:22). When they are assigned a task by God, they leave heaven, complete their work on earth, and then return to heaven.


8 ) Angels are personal beings, with minds (2 Sm 14:20), emotions (Heb 12:22), and wills (Rv 22:8-9)


9) Angels are incorporeal (lacking material form) and invisible (Heb 1:14). We are thus generally unaware of their activities around us (2 Kg 6:17).


10) Angels can nevertheless take on human appearance when their assigned task calls for it (Gn 18:1-8; Heb 13:2).


11) Angels are localized beings. They are not “everywhere present” like God. They have to move from one place to another (Dn 9:21-23).


12) Angels are extremely powerful; they are described as “mighty” (Ps 103:20).


13) God’s angels are holy (“set apart”). They are set apart from sin and set apart unto God to do His bidding (Jb 5:1; Ps 89:7).


14) The holy angles are unreservedly obedient to God (Ps 103:20)


15) Angels are immortal, though created. Once created (Ps 148:2-6, they never cease to exist (Lk 20:36).


16) The angels are innumerable (Rv 5:11). Daniel 7:10 makes reference to “ten thousand times ten thousand” angels (100 million angels)


17) Angels are called “ministering spirits” (Heb 1:14). The word “ministering” comes form a Greek word meaning “serve.” Angels, then, are spirit servants who render aid to heirs of salvation in the outworking of God’s purpose on earth.


18 ) This service takes many forms, including being used by God in answering believers’ prayers (Ac 12:7), bringing announcements and warning to God’s people (Lk 1:13; Ac 10:3-33), giving encouragement (Ac 27:23-24), providing protection (Ps 91:11), giving guidance (Gn 19:17), providing deliverance (Ac 12:7), and caring for believers at the moment of death (Lk 16:22).


19) Many believe that every Christian has a specific guardian angel throughout life (Mt 18:10; Ac 12:15). Others believe that angels are charged with different assignments as God directs (Ps 91:11)


20) Angles are organized by rank, including thrones, powers, rulers, authorities, and dominions (Eph 1:20-21; Col 1:16), but the details and nature of these ranks are not revealed to us.


21) Among unbelievers, angels restrain wickedness (Gn 19:1-15), announce God’s judgments (Rv 14:7-10), execute God’s judgments (Ac 12:23; Rv 16:1-18 ), and in the end times cast them: into the blazing furnace” (Mt 13:37-43).


22) In the afterlife Christians will judge angels (1 Co 6:3)

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 I would add that since angels were created they are not ever to be worshiped (Revelation 19:10).


 Something else I think about sometimes is that before the sin of Adam and Eve there was the sin of the angels who rebelled against God. Unlike people, when the angels did so I see no evidence that once that decision was made they can repent. 

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