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ABOVE THE ANGELS

Gracethrufaith.com – Jack Kelley

QUESTION:   In my recent study of false prophets in 2 Peter 2:10 and Jude 8 the term glorious ones (ESV) or celestial beings (NIV) was used to describe that which the false prophets blaspheme but angels dare not. Who are these glorious ones? The Greek word for glorious ones and how it’s used in other verses it puzzling.

ANSWER:   The Greek word translated celestial beings is doxa. Various superlatives are used to define the word, one of which is the majesty of God to which Christ was raised after His ascension. Paul described this as being far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every title that can be given not only in the present age but in the one to come (Ephes. 1:19-21).

By comparing the two references you cited we see that while neither writer was referring to the Father or the Son, the phrase celestial beings doesn’t describe ordinary angels either. Jude used the example of Michael the Archangel not daring to bring accusations against Satan (Jude 1:9). The title Archangel means chief of the angels and Michael’s function is captain of the Lord’s Host, or head of His armies. Therefore Satan must have been numbered among these celestial beings, all of whom are superior in rank to Michael. That would place them at the very head of the angelic ranks.

Perhaps the most remarkable use of this word is that Paul chose a compound form of it to describe us as a glorious church in Ephes 5:27. When Jesus stepped down from His throne, He bypassed the angelic ranks to become a man so He could save mankind. When He ascended to Heaven and returned to His throne He provided the way for us to ascend above the angels and be seated with Him there (Ephes. 2:6-7, Hebrews 2:5-8).

JUDGING ANGELS:

QUESTION:   I’m confused about believers in Heaven, judging angels. What wrong will the angels have done to be judged, if Satan has been vanquished, along with sin?

ANSWER:   First lets clarify that even with Satan bound there will still be sin on earth during the millennium.

You are referring to 1 Cor. 6:3 where Paul said since the Church will be judging angels we should be able to settle matters within the body.

The Bible doesn’t say what angels we will judge, but does give us the following examples of angels who are destined for judgment. Rev. 12:4 speaks symbolically about the dragon’s tail sweeping a third of the stars out of the sky and flinging them to earth. Many scholars interpret this as describing Satan’s rebellion and how a third of the angels rebelled with him.

2 Peter 2:4 talks about angels who sinned and are being held in gloomy dungeons for judgment, and Jude 6 tells of angels who took on human form being held for judgment. Genesis 6:4 says these angels married human women and produced hybrid offspring we call the nephilim.

WHEN WHERE THE ANGELS CREATED?

QUESTION:   Is there any specific scriptural reference to when angels were created? Can you provide any Biblical interpretation of the era when God created angelic beings in comparison to the creation of man, and when do you think the angelic rebellion took place?

ANSWER:   There is no specific time given to tell when the angels were created, nor is there any description of the condition of the Universe when it happened. That’s because the Bible is a book written for the age of man and is about mankind. It basically begins with Adam’s creation and ends when the last age of man, the Millennium, ends.

There are hints that the angels were created sometime before the man. Job 38:7 tells us all the angels shouted for joy when God laid the foundations of Earth. Since Satan, in the guise of the serpent, was already God’s enemy by Genesis 3, I think it’s safe to say that his rebellion also took place before the creation of Adam and Eve.

WHEN WHERE THE ANGELS CREATED? – FOLLOW UP

QUESTION:   Re: When were the Angels created? The answer you gave seems to be very incorrect Scripturally. We have recently had this discussion in our Institute and through studying Scripture have found a very clear answer. I wonder if you might look at it and see if we are out in left field.

We read in 2 places: Col 1.16 “For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:…”

Exodus 20:11 “For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day:…”

So if everything was created in that 6 day period, the Angels must also have been created in that 6 day period. The indication would seem to be that they were created in the first couple days – before man – but, as you say, there is no way to be sure because we are not told. But you quote from Job 38.7. Could that mean they rejoiced in their own creation – that they were created with the excitement to serve God? And if we take that verse, it would seem that the Angels and the stars were created on the same day.

ANSWER:   You may think you have found a very clear answer, but it’s incorrect, and the way you can tell it’s incorrect is that it forces you to reinterpret Job 38:7 into something the Lord didn’t intend. The problem you have is with the words translated heaven in Exodus 20:11 and Colossians 1:16 They can mean everything from earth’s atmosphere (the sky above us) to the throne of God. You get the meaning the writers intended by the context in which the word appears.

In Genesis 1:6 God explained what He meant by “heaven” in the creation account. He said it’s the expanse between the waters below (on earth) and the waters above (a water vapor canopy that surrounded the earth before the flood). Viewed from that perspective we can tell He wasn’t speaking of creating the Universe or the place of His throne on that day but of the earth and it’s atmosphere. That excludes the realm where He and His angels dwell, and means they weren’t part of the 6 day creation.

Viewed from this perspective you can read Job 38:7 literally, just like God meant for us to do. By the way, morning stars and angels in Job 38:7 both refer to beings. Lumps of matter that shine in the night sky don’t sing. Angels are also called stars in Rev. 2:20 and Rev. 12:4 and Jesus called Himself the bright morning star in Rev. 22:16.

 

WHAT ABOUT THE FALLEN ANGELS?

QUESTION:   I have a question about Satan’s angels. Does the Bible offer any clues as to their motivation for joining Satan in his rebellion? While people have the weak excuse that they have never seen God, Satan’s angels have all been in His presence. Satan wanted to be “like the Most High”, but all his angels knew that they would be subordinate to him. So why would they betray God when they knew He was real and quite likely to get very mad? What could the devil have offered them?

Also, what becomes of them after Satan is bound? From the Bible, it looks like Satan himself is the only one who is imprisoned for the 1000 years. What are they supposed to do during that time? Wouldn’t at least one of them have the pride and initiative to take over Satan’s place? They already back stabbed God, why would any of them have a problem doing it to Satan?

ANSWER:   No information is given about their motivation or final disposition. Peter and Jude wrote about those who rebelled before the flood being held in chains for judgment (2 Peter 2:4, Jude 6) and from that we can assume that they will all be judged and punished appropriately. Satan is the only one specifically mentioned beyond the 2nd Coming.

FALLEN ANGELS AND DEMONS

QUESTION:   When God threw Lucifer and the fallen angels to earth, It seemed logical to think these fallen angels were the demons doing Satan’s bidding in the lives of mankind. I am being told that demons and fallen angels are not the same. I find nothing in my Bible that defines them as different or having different distinct attributes. Are they two different things?

ANSWER:   First, Satan’s expulsion from heaven along with his angels takes place in Rev. 12:7-9 which won’t happen until the beginning of the Great Tribulation.

Second, while most scholars believe there’s a difference between demons and fallen angels, defining that difference is not a matter of general agreement.

Since demons seek physical embodiment, some people believe they used to be physical beings and are perhaps the wandering spirits of the Nephilim.

FALLEN ANGELS

QUESTION:   I have a question is about the angels held in chains (the watchers). Did these angels fall with the original group of angels that followed Satan or did they fall at a later time? Thanks for your response.

ANSWER:   Some believe the watchers were a group of angels who were tasked to observe the behavior of early mankind. In the process they became attracted to human women and married them. Their offspring were the Nephilim of Genesis 6. This view stems partly from the non-Biblical Books of Enoch, but may also be hinted at in Jude 6. From 2 Peter 2:4 we learn they’re being held in chains for judgment.

I believe Satan’s fall occurred before man was created, probably between the first two verses of the Bible. I base this on a literal reading of the Hebrew language in Genesis 1:2, which in effect says “But the Earth became an uninhabitable ruin. Some study Bibles offer this as an alternative rendering in their footnotes.

If this is true, it would mean the watchers were not part of the original rebellion in Heaven.

FALLEN ANGELS, UFO’S, AND TARTATUS

QUESTION:   Re: Who Is Tempting Us? You confused me when you said the fallen angels are locked up but Satan has his demonic horde. I have been under the impression that UFOs are fallen angels, but always confused about Tartarus. Please help me with this.

ANSWER:   The connection between UFOs and fallen angels is man made speculation. If you read the two verses I cited in the answer (2 Peter 2:4 and Jude 1:6) you can see that I was referring to the fallen angels who sinned in Genesis 6. They’re the ones who are locked up pending judgment.

Tartarus is the English version of a Greek word that only appears in 2 peter 2:4. Tartarus was regarded by the ancient Greeks as the abode of the wicked dead, where they suffer punishment for their evil deeds, and is translated as Hell in most English Bibles.

WHY DID FALLEN ANGELS BECOME MALE HUMANS?

QUESTION:   My question is why were the fallen angels only attracted to human women and not men? If these angels were able to apparently shape shift and materialize into different bodies why couldn’t they transform into women instead and take husbands for themselves? It is interesting that they were only attracted to women. Does this mean they couldn’t transform into women or that angels are only masculine?

ANSWER:   There’s no indication from the Bible that the fallen angels were monogamous. In fact, Genesis 6:2 can be interpreted as “they took wives of them, all that they chose.” History shows that if your goal is rapid population growth, having men with multiple wives is the best strategy. Since there were apparently numerous Nephilim, with works attributed to them being found in diverse places on Earth, one could logically assume that they became male and chose multiple wives for that reason.

ARE ALL ANGELS MALE?

QUESTION:   Are all angels male? Just wondering, I thought some are female and then my sister told me she heard all angels are male. Thanks for your time.

ANSWER:   In the Bible angels who interact with humans are portrayed in the masculine gender, but no one knows if that means there are no female angels. All we know is that angels do not enter into matrimonial relationships. Jesus said that when we go to heaven we’ll be like them, (Matt. 22:30) but I don’t think He was saying that we’ll all be male.

HOW CAN ANGELS AND HUMANS HAVE CHILDREN?

QUESTION:   I found your site by accident, and I’m glad I did since you address questions about Nephilim. One questioner asked how angels and humans could have sexual relations, which has been my question, i.e. how angels can produce sperm.

Your answer was that they assumed human form to do so. I can see how that could happen, but it would seem that the genetic DNA transferred from such a union would be as human as the form they assumed (or possessed). Neither case would seem to allow the transfer of angelic DNA – and indeed there is no such thing. Right?

I’m still not understanding how they transferred their angelic/demonic physical, emotional, and spiritual traits by assuming human form to have coitus. I am a true seeker, and I agree that the Sons of God are angels; but how did they physically transfer the corrupted angelic traits to humans via coitus? I don’t get it.

Thank you very much for answering my question.

ANSWER:   Not being a medical person, I’m not qualified to answer your question from the physiological standpoint. (As I think of it, I’m not sure anyone is.) All I know is that in Genesis 6:4 the Bible clearly states that angels married human women and had children that the Bible calls Nephilim, or fallen ones. And it also hints that these angels assumed human form to do so. (Jude 6)

These children had supernatural abilities and from what little historical information we can gather might have just about taken over the whole world.

Extra biblical sources like the Book of Enoch tell of Satan manipulating both human and animal gene pools back then so perhaps the answer to your question has a supernatural component.

ANGELS MATING WITH HUMANS

QUESTION:   I just had a question come to mind after you said ” Genesis 6:1-7 tells us that after sin entered the creation, certain fallen angels mated with human women to produce a hybrid race called the Nephilim,”. Would you know why fallen angels no longer mate with human women?

ANSWER:   From Jude 1:6 we learn that inter-marriage between angels and humans is forbidden by God because it produces a hybrid race that is neither angel nor human. In Genesis 6 these hybrids were called the nephilim, which means “fallen ones”. Extra-Biblical sources tell us they had many supernatural abilities, which they used to lead humankind astray, and were a major cause of the Great Flood that destroyed all but 8 humans who had remained genetically pure.

According to 2 Peter 2:4 and Jude 1:6 the angels who had fathered the Nephilim were bound in chains for their disobedience and are being held for judgment. This apparently discouraged any further disobedience.

ANGELS MATING WITH HUMANS – (CONTINUED)

QUESTION:   I have got to ask this question about angels mating with humans. The Bible says in heaven we are neither married or given in marriage. [Mark 12:25] There is neither male or female in heaven [Galatians 3:28] That being known; Why would the angels have the ability to reproduce with anything, let alone humans? It seems contradictory, to have angels mating with anything let alone producing Nephilims to run about.

ANSWER:   You’re correct about Mark 12:25, but in Galatians 3:28 Paul was not saying there is neither male nor female in Heaven. He was saying that once we are in Christ God no longer thinks of us as being Jewish or Gentile, slave or free, male or female, but as all being one in Christ. He wasn’t referring to our heavenly forms but to His perception of us on Earth.

Also, Jude 1:6 tells us the angels who sinned abandoned their origins. That means they no longer kept the form given to angels in Heaven and instead took on the form of humans on Earth. This is something angels have the ability to do, but only under God’s direction for the purpose of ministering to us (Hebrews 1:14). Having human form gave them the ability to mate with human women.

The Bible is very clear on this. Genesis 6:2 says, “The sons of God (angels) saw that the daughters of men were beautiful and they married any of them they chose.” Then Genesis 6:4 tells us, ” The Nephilim were on the Earth in those days – and also afterward – when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown.

MORE ON ANGELS MATING WITH HUMANS

QUESTION:   Recently a subject came up about the sex of angels in our bible study. They said according to Jesus after we get to heaven we would be like the angels neither marrying or being given in marriage. This led them to say that angels are “sexless”. However in Genesis we see the fallen angels comingling with humans with the Nephlim resulting. Any angel in scripture has a male name, so is there an answer?

ANSWER:   The idea that since angels don’t marry they are are sexless, and therefore when we’re in heaven we’ll be sexless because we won’t be marrying is merely a human assumption. The truth is we just don’t know.

We do know that Genesis 6:1-4 clearly describes angels (sons of God) and humans (daughters of men) intermarrying and having offspring called nephilim. So the question is, how did they do that? In Jude 1:6 we get the answer. It says these angels kept not their first estate (the Greek word means beginning or origin) and left their own habitation (this Greek word refers to the dwelling place of their spirit). It means these angels ceased being the entity they originally were created to be and became a different entity.

Putting 2 and 2 together we can see that they left their heavenly bodies and took on human bodies, something angels have the capability of doing in order to become visible to mankind.

(In Judges 13 the parents of Samson repeatedly referred to the angel of the Lord as a “man of God”. Hebrew 13:2 tells us some people who have been kind to strangers have actually entertained angels without knowing it.)

Having human bodies gave them the ability to have sex with human women. This was an act that so angered the Lord that He rounded them up and put them in chains to be held for judgment (Jude 1:6, 2 Peter 2:4).

GUARDIAN ANGELS

QUESTION:   Thank you for your insights, as always.

Is there any information on guardian angels and their roles? Specifically, angels who watch over us individually on a one-to-one basis. The only scriptural reference that I think might allude to this has to do with the childrens’ angels being in heaven and beholding God’s face (Matt. 18:10-11). If this is a reference to guardian angels, does that mean that they are always in heaven, and not on earth beside us? Since we now have the Holy Spirit, does that mean we no longer have these guardian angels?

ANSWER:   The clearest reference to guardian angels is the passage from Matt. 18 that you quoted. There the context is children. It’s apparently no problem for an angel to be in Heaven in one instant and here the next. Otherwise they wouldn’t be much help to our children would they?

Hebrews 1:14 says, “Are not all angels ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation?” and Hebrews 13:2 admonishes us to be kind to strangers because for all we know they could be angels.

From these passages we can reasonably conclude that angels are among us all the time helping and protecting us in unseen ways. One of the great eye-openers of all time will be when we get to heaven and see just how often we’ve been shielded, protected and assisted by these warriors of God without even knowing it.

MORE ON GUARDIAN ANGELS

QUESTION:   I’ve read where you say children are protected by personal guardian angels, and I’m sure you are right. But that brings a question to mind and maybe the answer is so obvious that I can’t see it. If children have guardian angels why are so many in hospitals with cancer and other horrible diseases, why are so many abused and killed by strangers and many times their own parents or fall into the hands of pedophiles? Why are some born with terrible birth defects? I would think a guardian angel would prevent all this and each child would at least have a good start in life. I hope this is not a silly question and you will be able to shed some light on it for me.

ANSWER:   I don’t believe I’ve ever written about angels being assigned to protect children from danger or disease, although I’ve heard a number of credible accounts of that very thing happening. In Matt. 18: 1-14 where the concept of guardian angels originates, the Lord wasn’t speaking of angels protecting children from harm. He was warning adults that angels who are assigned to watch these children report directly to Him. We shouldn’t regard them as less important than adults in God’s eyes, because He’ll hold us accountable for the way we treat them. Adults who lead them astray will be judged severely. I have used this passage, along with Romans 7:9, in support of my belief that all children belong to God and will be taken in the rapture, regardless of their parents’ spiritual condition.

WARRIOR ANGELS

QUESTION:   My question regarding Daniel 10: 13, “But the prince of the Persian kingdom resisted me twenty-one days. Then Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, because I was detained there with the king of Persia.”

Is this a physical resistance, spiritual, or some form of restraining that can’t be explained to a human? Do God sent angels and fallen angels fight in the sense that we humans fight with weapons? Or does the spirit world fight with words from the Lord?

ANSWER:   The angel sent to Daniel, the Prince of Persia, and Michael are all angelic beings. In a manner not explained to us the first angel was detained by the angel called the prince of Persia, who was sent by Satan to influence the earthly rulers of Persia. He prevented the first angel from delivering his message to Daniel. After 21 days of resistance, the archangel Michael, who is the protective power behind Israel, came to the first angel’s aid and secured his release to complete his mission.

In art and literature, warrior angels are depicted as powerful beings. 2 Kings 6:17 describes warrior angels on horses and chariots of fire. In Psalm 103:20 they’re called mighty ones. 2 Peter 2:11 says angels are stronger and more powerful than we are. We don’t know if they engage in hand to hand combat, but in the 99 times they appear in the Bible, angels are never described as carrying weapons.

CAN WE COMMAND THE ANGELS?

QUESTION:   My local church teaches from Hebrews 1:14 “Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?”. They say we can use this verse to basically tell our “ministering spirits” to do things. My Pastor used this verse and told his ministering spirits to bring him a new car. Though this sounds great, it seems a little off to me. IF this really worked and was this easy we couldn’t keep people out of churches. Are there other verses in the bible that talk about this?

ANSWER:   Hebrews 1:14 is the last verse in a passage meant to refute the teaching that Jesus was an angel. The idea is that Jesus, being the Son of God and the exact representation of His being, is vastly superior to angels who are ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit salvation (the Church). But to say that angels are ours to command is Biblically incorrect. They are God’s to command and sometimes He commands them to minister to us.

JUDGING ANGELS:

QUESTION:   I’m confused about believers in Heaven, judging angels. What wrong will the angels have done to be judged, if Satan has been vanquished, along with sin?

ANSWER:   First lets clarify that even with Satan bound there will still be sin on earth during the millennium.

You are referring to 1 Cor. 6:3 where Paul said since the Church will be judging angels we should be able to settle matters within the body.

The Bible doesn’t say what angels we will judge, but does give us the following examples of angels who are destined for judgment. Rev. 12:4 speaks symbolically about the dragon’s tail sweeping a third of the stars out of the sky and flinging them to earth. Many scholars interpret this as describing Satan’s rebellion and how a third of the angels rebelled with him.

2 Peter 2:4 talks about angels who sinned and are being held in gloomy dungeons for judgment, and Jude 6 tells of angels who took on human form being held for judgment. Genesis 6:4 says these angels married human women and produced hybrid offspring we call the nephilim.

MORE ON JUDGING ANGELS:

In 1 Corinthians Paul said that we shall judge the angels. Can you tell me should we judge the Archangels like Lucifer or should we judge the Cherubim or Seraphim or what type of angel will we judge and why?

ANSWER:   The only reference to the Church judging angels is in 1 Cor. 6:3. In Jude 1:6 there’s a statement that the angels who took on human form and sired the Nephilim are being held in chains for judgment. This is confirmed in 2 Peter 2:4. According to non-Biblical sources these angels were called “Watchers” because they were assigned to observe humanity and report to God. Perhaps these are the angels Paul was writing about. If so they will be judged for abandoning their posts and inter-marrying with humans.

Cherubim are a special class of beings who guard the Throne of God. (In Isaiah 6:2 they’re called Seraphim.) In Rev. 4:6-8 John referred to them as “living creatures”. Satan was originally part of this special group and served as their leader (Ezekiel 28:14). Aside from him, the Bible mentions only 4 other Cherubim, none of whom are scheduled for judgment.

MORE ON JUDGING ANGELS:

QUESTION:   Hello, first I want to tell you that I love your site. I’ve learned so many things and have enjoyed the studies you’ve conducted. I want to thank you for all your hard work and the wealth of information you provide everyone.

The question that I have has to do with a verse in Corinthians. In Corinthians 6:3 Paul says “Know ye not that we shall judge angels? How much more things that pertain to this life?” Frankly, I have no idea what that means. I’ve wondered does it mean we will judge the fallen angels, or if it means something completely different.

I’d appreciate it a lot if you could clear up for me what Paul is trying to say. Thanks again, and God bless.

ANSWER:   The context of 1 Cor. 6:1-8 is lawsuits between believers. In effect, Paul was saying that since we’ll reign with the Lord, He’ll trust us to help Him judge the world and even the angels who’ve sinned. Therefore we should trust other believers to help settle disputes between us, rather than taking each other to court.

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