The Twenty-Fifth Sunday of Ordinary Time

Hebrews 1:7, 14

Ministering Spirits

The Nicene Creed (A.D. 325) begins, “I believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth and of all things visible and invisible.”  The beginning of this “ecumenical” creed tells us two important things: 1) That God created the world; and, 2) That such things He created include “things invisible.”  In other words, there are things in this world that are not visible to human eyes, and we don’t mean germs.  There is a spiritual world that is vast beyond anything we could imagine and, according to Scripture, is “peopled” with angelic beings.  Due to our modern “scientific” worldview, many do not believe this for the simple reason that they can’t believe in anything that is not subject to human sense experience—a very limited understanding of reality.  Others go 180 degrees the other way and see angels, nymphs, ghouls, and vampires everywhere. 

Scripture teaches that there is a spirit world of angels and fallen angels which are called, “demons.”  We shall restrict ourselves to the former.      The word for “angel” in Greek is also the word for “messenger,” and this is what we generally see angels doing in their course between heaven and earth in Scripture.  Verse seven refers to this by quoting Psalm 104:4: [The Lord] makes his angels winds, and his ministers a flame of fire.” Verse fourteen simply summarizes what we find angels doing throughout Scripture, asking rhetorically: “Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation?”  Is it not a most humbling thing to realize that these mighty beings, far greater than the strongest man, far larger than any earthly army, are sent by God for the purpose of ministering to and serving us? 

But we must not forget the purpose of this passage which is to show how the Son is far greater, ever so much greater, than any and all angels, for as the one through whom the Father created the world, the Son is their creator as well.  The angels only serve us because they serve him and obey his commands to serve us.  The Son is the Lamb looking as though he had been slain who alone was able to take the scroll sealed with seven seals from the right hand of the One seated on the throne.  And what did all creatures in heaven and earth, visible and invisible, do when he did so?  They fell down before the Lamb and worshiped, and sang, “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing” (Revelation 5:1-14).  Yes.  Whoever it is, whatever it is, our Lord is greater, and greater is he who is in us… (1 John 4:4).

Author: The Reformed Baptist

My name is Stephen Taylor, ordained Baptist minister of eighteen years pastoral experience with a Ph.D. in Historical Theology from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. Better than that, I am married to a godly woman, Karla, who has been very patient with me since 1989. I have two daughters, both of whom I homeschooled for extended periods of time, who became godly young women, and who ran off and married godly young men, all of which is very proper. The oldest daughter has even seen fit to bless me with a grandson and a granddaughter, and my youngest daughter with a grandson, all three of whom are bundles of exceeding joy. As you can see, I am quite blessed. This website is dedicated to helping people grow in the wisdom and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ through the gift of writing that the Lord has given to me. It is specifically about helping His people grow in godliness, the theme you see repeated above. I write devotions with this aim and hope that they might be of some help to God’s people. Full disclosure: I am of a Reformed bent, meaning that my understanding of Scripture is primarily informed by the Reformers and their successors of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. However, as a student of church history and theology, I strive to remain true to that teaching handed down once for all unto the saints through every age of the Church. I like to think of myself as a “catholic” Christian, as the Reformers thought of themselves. At any rate, feel free to read, pray, and contact me if you wish, or correct me if need be. As you can see, I tend to follow the church year. Of course, I make no special claims about these devotions. I know very well that others have written better and plumbed the depths of God’s word with greater insight. But if my musings help someone draw closer to the Lord, well then, I have my reward. Blessings to you and may the God and Father of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ speak to you that word which He knows you especially need to hear. Grace & peace, Stephen Taylor

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