- Do angels have belly buttons?
- How many angels can dance on the head of a pin?
- Do angels have "job descriptions"?
Do angels have belly buttons?
Do people really ask if angels have belly buttons? Yes! This is a question I am asked frequently by adults—my wife’s obstetrician did. I have never had a child ask this question. People who ask (besides the ones who are trying to be cute) are those who know an important fact about angels. Angels are not born. They are created directly by God, so angels have no need for an umbilical cord, and there is no reason for them to have a belly button.
More importantly, angels are spirits (Hebrews 1:14). They remain unseen to our eyes. They don’t have bodies, let alone belly buttons. In the Bible, angels take on a physical form only when it is necessary for them to be seen. When angels do appear as people they are always modestly clothed. How detailed is their anatomy beneath their clothes? Do they choose to have a belly button in this temporary appearance? We cannot know. You can ask when you get to heaven, but I doubt you will think it is important to know then.
How many angels can dance on the head of a pin?
Medieval theologians spent days debating this question, according to popular belief. Did they? Mortimer J. Adler, the editor of Great Books of the Western World, writes, “That question was never propounded by any mediaeval theologian. It was an invention of modern scoffers who used it to exemplify what they regarded as the utterly specious disputes involved in angelology.”
The fact is that angels do not have physical bodies. They are pure spirits, without mass or matter. All the angels in God’s creation could be in one place at one time--even dancing on the head of a pin if God wanted them to.
Do angels have "job descriptions"?
Angels did many things in the Bible. How many of these "jobs" do you remember?
|Ladder climbers||Genesis 28:10-17|
|Birth announcer||Luke 1:13-18|
|Name giver||Luke 2:21|
|Lion tamer||Daniel 6:21|
|Chain breaker||Acts 12:6-7|
Karl Barth wrote that most of what angels do they do in heaven. There they are involved in the worship of God. They are also assigned to administer God’s government and carry out his bidding not only in heaven but also in our entire universe.
God also assigns angels to do many things on earth. They carry out his will in so many ways. Angels are God’s messengers. The word angel in the original languages of both the Old and New Testaments means messenger. The angelic message remembered most often is when Gabriel announced to Mary that she would be the mother of Jesus. God still uses his angels to give messages. They bring encouragement and needed guidance.
Some of the heavenly hosts are assigned to be guardian angels. They carry out God’s will by protecting and delivering their charges from harm. Angels engage in spiritual warfare. There are law and order angels who carry out God’s justice. At the time of death, angels also carry believers to heaven.