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Redeemer Church

Redeemer Church
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Tuesday, July 24, 2007

The Fate of Angels and Humans

Recently I was challenged by a fellow believer (and, at the time, fellow camper) on the meaning of my band's name and the biblical accuracy of it. Here's a couple of my thoughts on the differences between humans and angels and the "mystery" of salvation.

Heb. 2:16 "For assuredly He does not give help to angels, but He gives help to the descendant of Abraham".

Understanding this very straight forward verse, the following passage largely forms my theology on this issue:

1 Pet. 1:10-12 "As to this salvation, the prophets who prophesied of the grace that would come to you made careful searches and inquiries, seeking to know what person or time the Spirit of Christ within them was indicating as He predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories to follow. It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves, but you, in these things which now have been announced to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven - things into which angels long to look." (bold lettering my emphasis)

Now, applying the fact stated in the first verse, that salvific help is given to the descendants of Abraham and not to angels, then the portions of 1 Peter highlighted are all things that the verse suggests (as do I) angels do not understand fully and long to look into. It seems clear to me (and I think the rest of Scripture would agree) that angels have limited or no personal, experiential knowledge of salvation, grace, the glories following Christ's sufferings, or the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. At the very least, their experience with such things greatly differs from that of mankind. They have no firsthand experience of sin and the fall (they must be untainted by sin to remain in God's presence) and thus have never felt a separation from God, a need for redemption, or the glories of Christ in their lives following such redemption. Of course fallen angels have experienced sin and the fall, but to them there is no offer of redemption through the death of Christ.

As I briefly mentioned before, I think the indwelling of the Holy Spirit is something that the Bible delineates as solely for those in the Body of Christ. Thus, we have firsthand relational knowledge of the third person of the Trinity that the angels will ever only long to know. Thus, there is clearly a sense that we as God's chosen children have a firsthand experience and deeper knowledge of these things, and that it is the fate of angels ever to long to look into such things.

Ergo (I've always wanted to use that word!) we as a band suggest that it is the fate of angels to constantly be looking into the lives of believers and seeing the grace, redemption, and indwelling of the Holy Spirit that they will never understand as we do. So how dare we, as humans and the objects of God's loving grace, ever take for granted these manifold blessings that we have in Christ and through Him?! How dare we who are not subject to the fate of angels cheapen or take lightly our adoption as sons and daughters, our glorification as saints, and our high position as joint heirs with Christ?!! The name Fate of Angels is, for us, a constant reminder to live in a manner worthy of all this.

1 comment:

Rhett said...

Jared T.,

A good and interesting rumination on angels' appointed destiny.

-- And possibly an additional fitting conclusion for such a discussion on the name "Fate of Angels," is the fact that the LORD declares to unredeemed humans: "Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels" (Matt. 25:41).

-- This underscores the fact that God has a "fate" prepared for the fallen angels, which is "eternal fire," and this fate will also be that to which the unsaved will be condemned.

People who reject Christ ...will share that "fate of angels."

Christ is the Victor,
Pastor Rhett