The word “angel” comes from the Greek word for “messenger”. Angels are often referred to as the messengers of God. Angels are mentioned at least 108 times in the Old Testament and 165 times in the New Testament (Chafer, Systematic Theology, II, 3). While the exact number of angelic beings is unknown the bible does imply, often referring to a “host” of angels, that the total number of angelic beings is quite large. Angels are not human. Angels were created as a separate order of beings with an internal hierarchy that includes archangels, seraphim and holy angels.
Angels are powerful spiritual beings without a physical form that have intelligence, emotion and will. Throughout the bible angels appear in various forms including: with wings, in human form, with no form but only as bright flashes of light and no visual appearance at all with only their voices heard. Angelic beings play many different roles serving many different purposes in the bible including messenger, guide, healer, protector and warrior. In the bible angels are documented carrying out many different actions including: praise, worship, rejoicing, making appearances on God’s behalf, acting as God’s instrument of judgment, bringing answers to prayers, making announcements, delivering news, providing guidance, observing, overseeing, encouraging, caring, supporting and protecting.
One way to better understand different roles of angels in the bible is to familiarize ourselves with some of the well-known angelic stories written in the scripture. The following are 7 well known biblical stories involving angels.