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What should we know about angels?

Do you ever think about angels? Do you know whether or not they exist? Do you know what they do? Have you ever met one? Does it matter? Genesis 3 provides some answers to these questions.

Genesis 3 tells us that the first man and woman ate from a forbidden tree. Next, Yahweh handed out some consequences and expelled the man and woman from the Garden of Eden. Read the following verses, noticing why God expelled them from the garden and how He kept them out of the garden.

Gen. 3:20 ¶ Now the man called his wife’s name Eve, because she was the mother of all the living.

Gen. 3:21 The LORD God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife, and clothed them.

Gen. 3:22 ¶ Then the LORD God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of Us, knowing good and evil; and now, he might stretch out his hand, and take also from the tree of life, and eat, and live forever” —

Gen. 3:23 therefore the LORD God sent him out from the garden of Eden, to cultivate the ground from which he was taken.

Gen. 3:24 So He drove the man out; and at the east of the garden of Eden He stationed the cherubim and the flaming sword which turned every direction to guard the way to the tree of life.

God expelled them from the garden so they wouldn’t eat from the Tree of Life and live forever. God stationed cherubim at the Garden to keep them out. This passage doesn’t tell us much about cherubim; however, the fact that God stationed cherubim at the garden tells us that cherubim exist. Furthermore, this passage tells us that cherubim perform tasks assigned to them by God. In this particular case, the task was to keep the man and woman away from the Tree of Life. Another fact to note is that in order to keep them away, the cherubim may have needed to have interaction with the man and woman.

These verses tell us that in addition to humans and the animal world that we see everyday, there is another realm of living things. We commonly call these living things angels. Angels perform tasks assigned to them by God, and it is possible that their tasks would bring them into contact with us. There is a verse that tells us to be prepared to meet angels.

Heb. 13:2 Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by this some have entertained angels without knowing it.

This is a clear command to show hospitality to strangers. We should obey God simply because He is God, but in this case, an additional reason to obey God is that we might actually meet an angel. If we meet an angel, we won’t necessarily know that we met an angel, but God would know and God would know whether we helped His angel or not. Therefore, let’s show hospitality to strangers both because God told us to and because there is always the possibility that a stranger is actually an angel.

 

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“Scripture quotations taken from the NASB.”