Thursday, June 4, 2015

Angelic Ministers of God's Greatness - How they minister the glory of Jesus Christ's incarnation

Hebrews 1:5-6 "For to which of the angels did He ever say, “You are My Son, Today I have begotten You”?
And again, “I will be a Father to Him
And He shall be a Son to Me”? 6 And when He again brings the firstborn into the world, He says, “And let all the angels of God worship Him.”

Today's post continues what has been a series of posts on the subject of God's heavenly emmisaries - the angels. Thus far in our study we have considered the following about God's angelic ministers in regards to how they minister God's greatness: 

1). Angels illuminate the greatness of God's power

2). Angels can energize God's people to do His work

Today's post will focus on part one of the final major heading regarding the angels' ministry to us - namely emphasizing the Lord Jesus Christ.  

Dr. John MacArthur weighs in on how angels point the way to Jesus Christ
In a sermon Bible teacher and author Dr. John MacArthur preached back in 1976, he relays how angels are portrayed in the Bible, with particular focus on the Lord Jesus Christ. Dr. MacArthur states: "Now, to give you a parallel, look at Revelation chapter 5 verse 11. Revelation chapter 5 verse 11: “And I beheld and heard the voice of many angels round about the throne and the living creatures and the elders and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand and thousands of thousands saying with a loud voice, ‘Worthy is the Lamb.’” And here the angels are crying out, “Worthy is the Lamb.” Now, the question is: Are they singing? Verse 9 – back up: “And they sang a new song.” Did the four living creatures, who are angels, and the four and twenty elders, I believe are representatives of the church, and it appears as though all the rest of the angels join that new song. So, yes – mark this – the angels are seen singing twice in the Bible. Once at the creation of the world, once again at the return of Jesus Christ. Do you know what is particularly interesting about that? There is no record of them ever singing in between those two things. It seems as though immediately after God made the world and man fell, the angels lost their song. And the thing that will restore the angels’ song is the return of Jesus Christ, and then they’ll sing again." ( )

Dr. MacArthur states later on in the same message: "(W)e said that angels have a ministry toward Christ. We saw the angels minister to Christ in announcing His birth. They ministered to Him right around the time of His birth, all through His earthly life. They ministered to Him at His temptation, early in His life. Later, at His resurrection, and they were there attending His ascension into heaven, and they’ll be with Him when He comes back. But we said in all of the life of Christ, there was one period of time when the angels weren’t helping. You remember what it was? Was when He died. And that’s the time He said, “If I wanted, I could have called 12 legions of angels,” but He chose not to in order that He might die for you and for me. Apart from that, the angels attended Him throughout all of His life. And they still serve Him and He’ll come back with them in His second coming."

Angels minister the glory of Christ's incarnation
By witnessing how the angels ministered to Jesus points us to the truth of His incarnation and thus His glory for our sake. Jesus certainly illustrated the point of angelic assistant in the believer's life by how angels aided Him in His humanity. Matthew 4:11 "Then the devil left Him; and behold, angels came and began to minister to Him." As Jesus was praying in Gethsemane we read in Luke 22:43 "Now an angel from heaven appeared to Him, strengthening Him." Jesus chose to forego angelic aid in Matthew 26:53 "Or do you think that I cannot appeal to My Father, and He will at once put at My disposal more than twelve legions of angels?" The numerous appearances of angels throughout Jesus' earthly ministry points us to the glory of His incarnation.

Tomorrow we will conclude this series of posts on the angelic ministers of God's greatness by noting how they minister the glory of Jesus Christ in His resurrection.

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