What Angels Are Like
Angels are spiritual beings created by God to serve Him (Ps 148:1-5; Col 1:16). Calvin described angels as “heavenly spirits, whose obedience and ministry God employs to execute all the purposes which he has decreed,” while the writer of Hebrews described them as “ministering spirits sent forth to minister for those who will inherit salvation.” (Heb 1:14)
There are countless numbers of angels (Dan 7:10; Heb 12:22), though they do not reproduce (Matt 22:30). Matthew 18:10 may hint that there are at least as many angels as there are humans who have lived throughout history.
Exactly when they were created is unknown, but they were present during the creation of the world, and shouted for joy when they witnessed God’s creative power. (Job 38:6-7)
Like humans, angels are personalities who display intelligence, emotion and freewill. But while humans are both spiritual and material beings (Jam 2:26) angels are only spirit. (Heb 1:14) They sometimes appear in the glory of the Lord (Luke 2:9), sometimes as men (Heb 13:2; Mar 16:5), and sometimes appear as strange forms (Isa 6; Ezk 1).
Angels are limited beings and are not omniscient (2 Pet 2:11). They desire to learn more about the gospel (1 Pet 1:12) and rejoice when a sinner repents. (Lk 15:10)
What Angels Do
Angels worship God (Ps 148:2; Heb 1:6) and serve Him (Psa 103:20). They announce and execute judgment on God’s command (Rev 14:6-7; Rev 16:1).
Angels also appear to be involved somehow in bringing answers to prayer requests (Dan 10:12; Acts 12:5-10), though as mere servants of God they are never to be prayed to or worshiped. To do so would be a terrible sin. (Col 2:18)
Angels observe our world, taking special interest in Christ’s work on the cross. (1 Pet 1:12) No doubt they were amazed to see the Lord step out of glory and into our fallen world.
They must have marveled at the thought of He who knew no sin becoming sin on our behalf. (2 Cor 5:21) Every day they witness His grace in the lives of believers and it cause them to praise His holy name. It should cause us, the recipients of His grace, to do no less