Friday, February 19, 2010
God's Ministering Spirits
And when Peter had come to himself, he said, "Now I know for certain that the Lord has sent His angel, and has delivered me from the hand of Herod and from all the expectation of the Jewish people."
The Old and New Testament contain at least 300 references to angels. Everywhere in Scripture, we see examples of angels at work. Story after story tells us about the work of angels.
When Peter was arrested for preaching the gospel, the first-century church prayed. And in answer to their prayers, God dispatched an angel to deliver Peter, who was in such deep sleep, the Bible tells us, that the angel had to strike him to wake him up. The chains fell off his wrists, the prison door opened automatically, and Peter walked out.
Often when we pray, it might be an angel who is actually dispatched to help bring about the answer to our prayers. Angels straddle both heaven and earth, and it would appear that although they are created beings, they never die. Jesus said of people who have gone on to heaven, "Nor can they die anymore, for they are equal to the angels and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection" (Luke 20:36).
And as Hebrews 1:14 tells us, angels have a special work they do in the lives of believers: "Are they not all ministering spirits sent forth to minister for those who will inherit salvation?" Generally we don't know what angels are doing and when they are doing it. They are sort of like an elite fighting force: they are dispatched on a mission, they go in, they take care of business, and we are never aware of it.
As Billy Graham put it, angels are God's secret agents. They are His ministering servants, protecting, delivering, and sometimes guiding. You don't know it is them. You don't need to engage them. You don't need to try and communicate with them. They are simply doing the work that God has called them to do.
Copyright © 2010 by Harvest Ministries. All rights reserved.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
- This life will have its sorrows
- God loves us
- Jesus weeps in our times of pain
- God can be glorified through human suffering
Hope for Hurting Hearts, Pastor Greg Laurie's new book, examines these truths, revealing God's love and care for us, and shows how we can find hope, even in the midst of the most unbearable pain and sorrow.