angel worship

The Wise Wise Men

Friday, December 20, 2013

“…There came wise men from the east… And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh” (Matthew 2:1,11 KJV).

When we see the Nativity Scene, we observe three wise men assembled around Baby Jesus’ manger. Actually, the Bible never indicates how many wise men there were, and the Bible never says they visited Christ as a baby.

According to the Bible, an indeterminate number of wise men from the east (Gentiles) saw the star of Christ in the east, so they travel to Jerusalem, inquiring where to find Christ, the King of Jews (verses 1,2). King Herod and Jerusalem are troubled, and Herod summons Israel’s religious leaders to tell him where the Messiah will be born. They tell him, according to Micah 5:2, “Bethlehem of Judaea” (verses 3-6). Herod then sends the wise men to seek Jesus, hoping to find and destroy Him (lest He become king and end Herod’s reign).

The star leads the wise men to Nazareth, where Joseph and Mary live in a “house”notice this is not the manger scene. Also, note that Jesus is not a baby here, but a “young child” (verses 9,11). In fact, he is as much as two years old (verse 16). By the way, according to Numbers 24:17, that star—an angel (cf. Job 38:7)—that the wise men saw signified the Messiah-King of Israel… they were wise in that they recognized and followed it!

Interestingly, the wise men worship Jesus, not Mary and/or the angel, and they bring Him gifts of “gold, frankincense, and myrrh” (today’s Scripture)—frankincense and myrrh are aromatic gum resins burned as incense. Gold is for a King, frankincense is for a Priest, and myrrh is for a Prophet—Jesus is all three (Isaiah 9:6,7; Zechariah 6:13; Deuteronomy 18:15,18). Amazingly, Isaiah 60:6, written some 700 years beforehand, even prophesied Gentiles would bring God gifts of gold and frankincense. The Bible is an amazing Book!

Sadly, these Gentiles had more respect for Israel’s King than Israel. These wise men recognized fulfilled prophecy… they were wise men indeed!

Be Not Blinded by ‘Bright Lights!’

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

“Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind, and not holding the Head [Christ]…” (Colossians 2:18,19a KJV).

Religious—and even nonreligious—people claim to see heavenly “visions” or angelic creatures (“Mary,” “Jesus,” “deceased relatives,” et cetera). Seeking monetary gain, some have written “Christian” books discussing how they allegedly died, visited heaven (or even hell!!!), and then returned to earth. Are these experiences of God?

“Bright lights” and “supernatural” visits do not belong in our dispensation. Look at today’s Scripture: those people are intruding into those things which [they] have not seen….” Interestingly, modern “bibles” omit “not,” stating the opposite of the King James Bible!!!

Our sin-tainted minds and our deceptive emotions can get so hyped up about having a particular religious experience that it seems to come to pass (when it actually did not happen). We imagine we see things (“angels,” “devils,” et cetera) that are not really appearing. Beware; Satan and his “seducing spirits” use these phenomena to draw us away from the truth of God’s Word (1 Timothy 4:1).

Notice the Bible’s description of false teachers: “For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light (2 Corinthians 11:13,14). Satan is the master counterfeiter: he wanted to be “like the most High” (Isaiah 14:14). Satan appears not as an evil-looking monster, but as “an [INNOCENT-LOOKING] angel of light!”

Paul wrote, “But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed(Galatians 1:9). Why would any “angel” “appear” to you in this the Dispensation of Grace? It would only be to deceive you! Angels have no ministry to us; their ministry and appearances belong in Israel’s program.

The Bible is the Final Authority, not emotional experiences. Let no one trick (“beguile”) you with false teaching… that includes preachers, “angels,” and “dead saints!”

Do We Have Guardian Angels?

Monday, February 6, 2012

“The angel of the LORD encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them” (Psalm 34:7 KJV).

Today’s Scripture is one of the scores of verses that speak of “guardian angels.” But do we have guardian angels today, in our Dispensation of Grace?

Throughout the Old Testament, angels protected and guided the nation Israel (Exodus 23:20,23; Exodus 33:2; Judges 6:11,12; 2 Kings 19:35; et al.). “For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone” (Psalm 91:11,12).

In the New Testament, angels ministered to Jesus Christ during His earthly ministry (Matthew 4:11; Luke 22:43). Angels rescued the imprisoned apostles (Acts 5:18-26) and delivered the Apostle Peter from prison (Acts 12:1-11). Yet, when we come to our Apostle Paul, God uses an earthquake—not an angel—to free him from prison (Acts 16:23-28). Why?

Notice what Paul writes about angels today. They should not be worshipped (Colossians 2:18) and that, if a supposed “angel” appears to us today, it would do so only to deceive by preaching to us a false gospel (Galatians 1:8; cf. 2 Corinthians 11:14). But, Paul’s epistles are silent about guardian angels in our Dispensation of Grace. We are not guaranteed physical protection with angels like God promised Israel, but we Christians have some better: we have eternal spiritual protection because the indwelling Holy Spirit is guarding our souls (Ephesians 4:30; cf. Romans 8:35-39).

Furthermore, Paul writes that, while angels have no ministry to us today, we have a ministry to them! The angels are curious about what God is doing, so they learn this by watching us, the Church the Body of Christ (1 Corinthians 4:9; 1 Corinthians 11:10; 1 Timothy 3:16; 1 Timothy 5:21). Smile, they are watching! 🙂

But, what about Hebrews 1:14: “Are they [the angels of verse 13] not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?” Notice, this is the book of Hebrews—this is speaking of future Israel.

We do not need angels today—they need us.