Cupid is perhaps one of the most popular angelic figures of all time. Each February 14, he has his day in the sun. In Roman mythology, the young boy was thought to be the son of the love God Venus and the war God Mars. It was believed that once one was pierced by one of his arrows, he or she was overcome with uncontrollable affection. Cupid is just one of many popular depictions of angels which sows misunderstanding in the minds of many. I believe it is helpful for us to know a few basic Bible truths about angels, so that we won’t be distracted by the zany ideas of culture. Consider four Bible truths.
They celebrate over salvation.
Angels are aware of the gospel message. In fact, the Bible says they “long to catch a glimpse” of things related to God’s plan of redemption (1 Peter 1:12). On top of this, Jesus taught that they celebrate every time someone is saved. He said, “There is joy in the presence of God’s angels over one sinner who repents” (Luke 15:10). When blind eyes are opened and baptismal waters are stirred, the angelic band of heaven sings a special! If cherubim and seraphim are excited about the gospel and souls coming to salvation, we should be as well!
They have been involved in revealing God’s truth.
Galatians 3:19 says, “The law was put into effect through angels.” According to Deuteronomy 33:2 and Acts 7:38, an angelic host surrounded Mt. Sinai when the Lord gave Moses the Law for Israel.
They will assist God at the final judgment.
At the end of time, all of humanity will stand before either the Judgment Seat of Christ (2 Corinthians 5:10) or the Great White Throne Judgment (Revelation 20:11-15). The former will be a judgment for believers, and the latter will be a judgment for non-believers. Apparently, angels will help round up those who have not professed Christ. Jesus said, “So it will be at the end of the age. The angels will go out, separate the evil people from the righteous” (Matthew 13:49).
The Devil was once an angel.
In the beginning, his name was “Lucifer” (Isaiah 14:12). He was one of the Lord’s most magnificent and stately guards (Ezekiel 28:12-14). Provoked by jealousy, he rebelled against God’s established order. Though he was made to praise the Lord, he wanted to get praise for himself. As a result, he led a host of angels (Jude 6) in an attempted coup d’état (Isaiah 14:13-14). Because of his rebellion, he was stripped of his position and exiled from the presence of God (Isaiah 14:12). Today, he still has access to God (Job 1:6), and he has the ability to roam throughout the earth (1 Peter 5:8). He has made it his main mission to grab glory from God by deceiving the Lord’s prized creation — human kind (Genesis 3:1 and 2 Corinthians 4:4). One day, he will be given permanent restricted access to heaven (Revelation 12:7-11). At that time, he will amp up his shenanigans on earth (Revelation 12:12), but his power will be short lived. At the end of time, he will be cast into hell so that he can no longer deceive men and women (Revelation 20:10). In the meantime, we are to resist his lies (James 4:7) and his corrupt value system (1 John 2:16). Stand strong in the faith, knowing that Satan ultimately has no power over you!
Dr. Patrick Latham