The Rank of Angels

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Part Four - The Rank Of Angels

 

I. THE RANK OF ANGELS: the Bible mentions at least six ranks of authority

1a Listed: this ranking is found in the NT and applies to both elect and fallen angels (Rom. 8:38; Col. 2:15)

1b The Archangel (Jude 9; 1 Thes. 4:16)

1c The highest of ranks: means chief of angels

2c Only Michael is identified as an archangel (Jude 9) yet there may be others

1d Michael is called "one of the chief princes" (Dan. 10:13) and "the great prince" (Dan. 12:1) and the Prince of Israel (Dan. 10:21) – “possibly given charge of the angels who care for the welfare of Israel?

2d Satan seems to be a match for Michael's abilities in Jude 9 and in the great angelic war in Rev. 12:7-8 however this may be more due to respect than power

2b Thrones (Col. 1:16)

1c The highest rank mentioned elsewhere in Scripture

2c It may be equivalent to archangel since used of kings

3b Dominions: (Lordships - Col. 1:16)

4b Principalities (Rulers - Col. 1:16; Eph. 3;10)

5b Authorities (Col. 1:16; Eph. 3:10; 1 Pet. 3:22)

6b Powers (1 Pet. 3:22)

2a Described: this rank or order seems to be based on:

1b Authority

1c Michael and Satan have angels under them (Rev. 12:7, 8)

2c Angels are called princes which is an office of authority (Dan. 10:13)

2b Power

1c Term “mighty angels” makes a distinction between regular and mighty (Rev. 10:11)

2c Prince of Persia seemed to be more powerful than Gabriel (Dan. 10:13)

3b Responsibility

1c Some angels are in complete charge of nations (Dan. 10:13, 20-21)

2c Some angels are in charge of only one individual as seen in Lk. 8:26-40 in fact several control one person by inhabiting his body and mind

3a Specialized

1b Declared

1c The Scriptures refer to them as angels - Cherubim, Seraphim, and Living Creatures

2c The description of these angels they appear to share many things in common or are the same angel with names (Isa. 6:2-6; Ezek. 1:4-10 & 10:20-22, Rev. 4:6-8) depending on the time frame and the need of the writer - names descriptions or titles - (one individual could be a foreman, carpenter, and father – the terms are different but the descriptions would share many similarities

2b Demonstrated

1c Translation of Seraphim in Isa. 6:2 means "glowing ones" which is used of "firery" serpents (Num 21:8-6; Duet. 8:15; Isa. 14:29; 30:6) very description of the angels in Ezek. 1:7, 13, 14

2c The angels in Isa. 6 and Rev. 4

1d Fly

2d Have six wings

3d Around the Throne of God

4d Cry out “Holy, Holy, Holy”

3c The angels in Ezekiel 10:14, 20-21, and Rev. 4:6-8

1d Have similar faces

2d Called living creatures (Ezek. calls Cherubim Ezek. 10:20)

4c Contradictions Resolved

1d Isaiah saw only one face - wings covering the others?

2d Ezekiel saw only four wings however the feet were not covered so they have be retracted

3d John saw a different face on each angel - however location and facing away from the Throne of God

4a Applied: The Purpose of Ranking

1b If God created angels to have rank or order it fair to assume that God had planned the same for man in light of the same terms are used for both

2b The fact that government is flawed is due to effects of the fall not due to establishment of an institution that God not intended

1c Whatever is in the nature of God is found in those in God's image - angels and men

2c Thus chaos and disorganization are the symptoms of the fall of man

1d More chaotic and disorganized life becomes the unhappiness it brings to us

1e The essence of hell itself

2e Absence of God is totally Chaos

2d The greater the impact on man, the greater the need for authority and ranking - for chaos and anarchy are at hand

3c Therefore organization and ranking should be a real part of:

1d Churches

2d Homes and marriages

3d Worship Services

4d Government

5d Teaching and preaching

3b It would appear the original candidate for King of mankind was Adam but he failed and so the Lord assumed the role and we serve with Him as lesser rulers