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Angels and Demons: The Truth About Angelic Beings

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
January 4, 2022 3:00 am

Angels and Demons: The Truth About Angelic Beings

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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January 4, 2022 3:00 am

Angels, unfortunately, suffer from a good deal of bad press. Fake news. Inaccurate reporting. They’re not plump little babies sitting on clouds playing harps. They don’t have two wings and a glowing halo. And not all angels are the good guys. What’s the truth about these heavenly beings?

Pastor Greg Laurie has the answer today on A New Beginning directly from God’s Word, in one of the most requested messages of the past year. Part of our “top ten.”

Listen on harvest.org.

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A New Beginning is the daily half-hour program hosted by Greg Laurie, pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Southern California. For over 30 years, Pastor Greg and Harvest Ministries have endeavored to know God and make Him known through media and large-scale evangelism. This podcast is supported by the generosity of our Harvest Partners.

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Today's episode of A New Beginning is brought to you by Harvest Partners, helping people everywhere know God.

Learn more at harvest.org. And while you're there, browse our library of free ebooks designed to help you grow in your faith. Angels have a specific ministry in the life of the Christian. They are dispatched from heaven to assist us, to encourage us, to minister to us, sometimes to protect us. They're sort of like God's secret agents. Pastor Greg Lorre says, angels are real.

The Bible says so. And there may be an angel or two near you right now. Angels are ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit eternal life. This is the day when the lost are found. This is the day for a new beginning. Amazing grace, how sweet the sound. Again you hear all the angels are singing.

This is the day, the day where life begins. Angels unfortunately suffer from a good deal of bad press, fake news, inaccurate reporting. They're not plump little babies sitting on clouds playing harps.

They don't have two wings and a glowing halo. And not all angels are the good guys. What's the truth about these heavenly beings? Pastor Greg Lorre has the answer today on A New Beginning directly from God's Word and one of the most requested messages of the past year, part of our top 10.

This is the day, the day when life begins. You know right now all around us is a supernatural world. It's an invisible world. And around us right now are thousands of mysterious created beings called angels. Most of them are holy.

I'm sorry to say some of them are not. Some of them are fallen. But you find what the Bible says about angels in both the Old and the New Testament. In fact the Bible mentions angels nearly 300 times.

And there's so many misconceptions about angels. Let me just say first off, the job of an angel is to kind of work undercover. I like to compare angels to Navy Seals. You know Navy Seals are that elite force that we dispatch in certain situations to take care of business.

They go and do things all the time and we often don't hear about what they did. They just get the job done. That's sort of a good description of angels. They get the job done for God. They're not there to draw attention draw attention to themselves.

They're not there to have us have extended conversations with them. Though it's possible you have spoken with an angel. And I'll tell you why I believe that in a few moments. But you probably weren't aware of it if you were speaking with an angel. I would suggest to you there are times when angels have spoken to you. But you probably didn't know it was an angel. But they're very interesting creatures sort of working behind the scenes working undercover. They're sort of like God's secret agents.

But there's a lot of misconceptions as they said. For starters people think that that when we die we might become an angel. You know I've heard it said when someone dies well God must have needed another angel in heaven. Well God doesn't need any more angels in heaven. And more to the point people don't become angels when they die. Angels are created beings.

They're a group all unto themselves. When we die we receive a new body and and so forth. But we have no connection to angels. And I hate to break this to you girls but in every appearance of an angel on earth it was a guy not a girl. Now I know that is hard for some people to believe because we use the term angel sometimes in a feminine way. Like she's as pretty as an angel right.

We don't generally say he's as handsome as an angel. But actually all of the appearances of angels are appearing as men in the Bible. And so these are amazing created beings that are there working constantly in our life. It would appear from scripture that they are eternal. It would seem as though they never die.

Speaking of those who have died and gone to heaven Jesus said in Luke chapter 20 neither can they die anymore for they are equal to the angels. Now angels have a specific ministry in the life of the Christian. They are dispatched from heaven to assist us. To encourage us. To minister to us. Sometimes to protect us.

Occasionally to speak to us. Hebrews 1 14 says angels are ministering spirits sent to serve those who will inherit eternal life. There's many instances in scripture where angels intervened and angels spoke to Philip and told him to go to the desert and he went. And a man came to faith from Ethiopia.

And then we have the story of Peter who was taken to prison and he was going to be executed because James had already been put to death by King Herod. And the church prayed. And an angel was dispatched to wake Peter up and get him out of jail. So an angel was sent as an answer to prayer. There's a story in the book of Genesis where God was speaking to Jacob to show him the world of angelic activity.

And Jacob had a dream. And in his dream or vision he saw a stairway or a ladder of angels going up and down the stairway or up and down the escalator if you will. Just angels constantly at work moving between heaven and earth doing the work of God. And as I already said it's entirely possible you've met an angel. You say well how would that be?

Well Hebrews 13 2 says don't forget to entertain strangers for in doing so some people have entertained angels without knowing it. So you know you might say well how would I know? You probably wouldn't know. Maybe you'll know when you get to heaven. And you'll be walking around and some angel walks up to you and says hey thanks for getting me that burger.

What? Hey you got me that burger. Have we met? Yeah we've met. Remember that homeless guy that you ran into on this date and I was hungry and I said can I get a meal and you took me into In-N-Out Burger and you got me a great burger.

Double double as I recall animal style. Still remember it even in heaven. I want to thank you for that. You were an angel?

Yes I was. Because the idea is that when you did it for a stranger somebody that was in need it could have been an angel under cover. So it's possible you've met an angel. It's possible there's angels in the room right now. Now I know they're here in the invisible realm but it's not entirely outside of the realm of possibility that there could be an angel as a person. So look around. Look around. You never know.

Don't look for feathers or anything like that. But wouldn't it be mind-blowing if an angel appeared to us right now? I tell you what if an angel did appear you'd be very tempted to worship the angel. That actually happened to the apostle John. An angel appeared. He was so blown away he fell down to worship it. And the angel said do not worship me. Worship God. But they're so incredible.

They're so awe-inspiring. You'd be inclined to worship. But imagine if Gabriel or Michael or another angel appeared before us right now.

I did hear a story about a time in a church service when the devil himself appeared. So here are people at church and all of a sudden Satan appears on the stage. People are screaming and freaking out. Climbing over each other to get out of the church. They're climbing out of the windows running out the doors. They're terrified. The church is emptied in just seconds.

Except one older man sitting in the second row. The devil says why aren't you running? Do you know who I am? The man says I know who you are. And the devil says I am the devil. I have a lot of power. I could bring a lot of misery into your life.

Why aren't you afraid of me? The old guy said I've been married to your sister for 46 years. That's a true story.

No it isn't. Just one of those lame preacher jokes right? But I'll tell you if an angel of the Lord appeared we would certainly be amazed. Now sometimes the question is as do we have guardian angels?

I don't know the answer to that but I think the answer is maybe. I mean I know we have angels involved in our lives. But do we have a specific angel that is assigned to us?

Like that's your job. You watch over that child or you watch over that person. We can't know a certainty but there is an interesting statement where Jesus says in Matthew 18 10 don't look down on these little ones speaking of children for I tell you their angels in heaven always see the face of my father in heaven. Interesting phrase their angels in heaven. So that would imply maybe a guardian angel.

Going back to the story of Peter when he was sprung from the prison by the angel he showed up at a house where a bunch of Christians were praying and he knocked on the door and they they couldn't believe that God had answered their prayers so quickly. And so when someone said it was actually a lady named Rhoda she said Peter is standing at the front door knocking. One of the others said well it's probably just his angel. And they left him knocking. I mean for me if an angel knocks I'm I'm I'm letting him in.

Hey if FedEx knocks I open the door. Wouldn't I open the door for an angel? And so that's a curious thing but it's interesting that they say maybe it's his angel. So maybe there are guardian angels.

If there are or there are not that's really not that important. You can just be confident of this. You have angels actively involved in your life protecting you watching out for you as I said God's secret agents. Pastor Greg Laurie will have the second half of his message in just a moment. So many listeners have commented on the help they receive from these daily messages.

God's word ministers to them and it often gets them through some of their darkest hours. Hi Pastor Greg your messages have been a blessing to me this last year. In 2020 I had heart valve replacement. Then my dad had heart issues and was in the hospital until he passed away.

Three days after that my husband and I tested positive for COVID. It's been tough but listening to your encouraging words and your books on audible have helped me through it with a smile on my face and joy in my heart. I know there will be more bumps in the road along the way mainly because I'm a six-time cancer survivor but I know who guides me in my journey and I thank God for servants like you as well.

God bless you. We're encouraged to know that listeners are hearing these messages and God is using his word to comfort them. How have Pastor Greg's studies impacted your life?

Would you let them know? Drop an email to Greg at Harvest.org. That's Greg at Harvest.org. Well Pastor Greg is offering insights today from our series of most requested messages of the past year.

Let's continue now. So the title of this message is angels and demons. So this is what kind of perplexes us is where the heck did demons come from? Why do we even have to have demons? Well they're out there for sure and to simplify it a demon is a fallen angel. God did not create demons as we know them today.

He created angels but he gave to these angelic creatures a free will and an ability to choose and as hard as it is to believe one third of the third of the angels followed a high-ranking angel known as Lucifer the son of the morning in a rebellion. Lucifer is also known as Satan and the devil. So before I address where demons came from let me just talk about where the devil came from. Now if I were to ask you where did the devil come from most of you would probably say hell. The devil came from hell.

Actually that's not true. Now let me tell you where the devil really came from. The devil came from heaven.

That's right. Now he wasn't the devil in heaven. He was as I mentioned Lucifer this beautiful angel maybe an archangel if not certainly a high-ranking angel on the level of maybe a Gabriel I don't think a Michael but certainly a high-ranking angel.

But he rebelled against God. In fact it's described in vivid detail over in Ezekiel 28 where it is said of Lucifer you were the model of perfection full of wisdom and perfect and beauty. You were in Eden the garden of God. You were anointed as a guardian cherub for I ordained you. You were on the holy mount of God. You walked among the fiery stones.

I don't know what the fiery stones are but he walked among them. You were blameless from the day you were created. Listen till wickedness was found in you and through your widespread trade you were filled with violence and you sinned and I drove you and I drove you in disgrace from the mountain of God and I expelled you oh guardian cherub from among the fiery stones. Your heart became proud on account of your beauty and you corrupted your wisdom because of your splendor. So I threw you to the earth and made you a spectacle before kings."

Wow. So what happened to Lucifer? Wickedness was found in him. It's also spoken of in Isaiah 14 the fall of Satan.

Lucifer allowed his perfection to be the cause of his corruption. He wanted the number one job. Satan says in Isaiah 14 again I will be like God.

I will be like the most high. He wanted the top job. And so the Lord said you're out of here. And so he lost that position he once held and one third of the angels followed him. Instead of wanting to worship God he himself wanted to be worshipped. You know it's interesting that it says he was filled with violence.

You know this is so insane these shootings. And you know we always want to find the motive. Oh first of all those in the political world want to find out is he a Republican or is he a Democrat.

And they make it all a political discussion. Or what what race was he? Was he why was he black?

Was he Hispanic? Well no they missed the big issue. There's a spiritual dynamic going on and we forget the fact that there's evil in the world today. And there's a devil who's full of wickedness and full of violence that inspires people to take the lives of other people. That's what I mean when I say we're in a spiritual battle. I sent out a tweet and I said let's pray for everyone who is in office right now whether you put them there or not. I got liberals and conservatives mad at me.

What is wrong with you people? And so I think the thing that we don't realize is this is a spiritual world and we get caught up into the political fights and caught up into these other little things. And we forget we're children of the most high. And our kingdom is in heaven. And we're ambassadors of the kingdom of God.

And we need to remember that. And so we'll talk about that more next time in our message on spiritual warfare. But anyway so the devil. Yes he is no longer in that exalted position in heaven.

But this might surprise you. He has a backstage pass into the presence of God. You say well how do you know that? Because you're reading about it multiple times in Scripture. In the book of Job is the account of the angels of the Lord presenting themselves before the Lord. So here's all the angels and guess who shows up? Lucifer is there. And the Lord says well what have you been up to? Oh says the devil. I've been going back and forth across the earth watching everything that's going on.

And what an interesting description. He's just like roaming around. He's looking for trouble. What havoc can I wreck? What misery can I bring?

What life can I potentially destroy? That's why the Bible describes him as a roaring lion walking about seeking whom he may devour. That's him. And that's what a lion is like.

They're hunting for prey. The devil never takes a vacation. Wouldn't it be nice if he did? Wouldn't it be great if we could announce hey we just found out Satan is taking August off. No devil in August. You know I think even if Satan took August off we would still get ourselves into trouble. Don't you think?

I think so. But the devil doesn't take a month off. The devil doesn't take a week off. He doesn't take a day off. He doesn't take an hour off.

He's always at work. If he's beaten he rises again. If he can't come in the front door he'll come in the back door. If he can't climb down through the roof he'll tunnel up through the floor.

He'll find a way to get in. And he's looking for vulnerability. He's looking for someone he can grab.

You know going back to lions. You know usually the easiest way for the lion to get their lunch or dinner. He's looking for someone he can grab. You know when they watch that little herb of antelope or whatever it is they're chasing after and there's always the lagger right.

There's a group they're all moving to get and then there's one guy you know 20 feet behind. Lion says it looks like lunch to me. You want to know something surprising though? More people are killed in Africa by hippos than lions.

Yeah that's true. Lions kill some but oh hippos kill way more. And the funny thing about a hippo is they don't even look threatening.

You know well I played hungry hippo. They're so cute. You know you go on the jungle cruise ride in Disneyland and they're there with the little ears and they do that in real life. Little ears turn around like that and then you know you think how dangerous are they? They're very dangerous and did you know they're really fast on land. I know this because I went to Africa years ago and we stayed in a tent at camp and they took us to our tent and they warned us about the hippos that come out at night. I'm thinking hippos.

Are you serious? I should be scared of hippos. He goes oh yeah. They move fast and they attack people. So I bring that up because the Bible does not say that your adversary the devil is like a hippo running around okay.

It says he's like a lion. But the point I'm making is sometimes I think oh yeah watch out for the lions that the devil can come to you in many ways. Sometimes they'll come in all of his depravity and wickedness and perversion and other times they'll come to you as an angel of light but always with the purpose of deceiving or misleading you. And he has a well organized network of demon powers doing his bidding and those are his demons. We read numerous passages that refer to Satan and his minions. Not those minions.

These minions. Matthew 12 24 speaks of Beelzebub which is another name for the devil. The prince of the demons. Then in Matthew 25 41 the devil and his angels. Revelation 12 7 the dragon another phrase for the devil and his angels. And of course hell is the future dwelling place of the devil and his angels. Now it seems to me that the purpose or objective of demons is twofold. Number one it is to hinder the purposes of God. Number two it is to extend the power of Satan. Again the purpose of demons i.e. fallen angels is twofold.

They want to hinder God's purpose in your life and they want to extend the power of the devil. So I know that kind of is scary when we talk about things like this. And it's true that one third of the angels followed Lucifer but it's also true that two thirds of the angels are on our side. And more importantly God is on our side.

So we're on the winning side but there's a battle still. Pastor Greg Laurie with a close look at the world of angels and demons today on A New Beginning and there's more to come in this message. Hey everybody I have a very have a very special guest with me right now my friend Levi Lusko and he has written a brand new book for you parents to read to your children to help them grow spiritually. It's called Roar Like a Lion 90 Devotions to a Courageous Faith. You know what I love about this book is it's beautifully done graphically. It takes the truth of the word of God and presents it in a very appealing way.

Little sidebar articles filled with little factoids to keep the interest of the kids and the parents or grandparents depending on who's reading it. But Levi's here with me right now. Levi I thought maybe I would ask you to pick one of these devotions and just read it to us so we can see what Roar Like a Lion is all about. Well thank you so much Pastor Greg and I just want to encourage everyone to make sure and support A New Beginning because above and beyond you receiving this amazing gift you're going to have fruit in heaven through what God does is people come to know Jesus on a new beginning every day and that's such an important calling. I want to read day 60 which is called Supernatural and the scripture verse for the day is from Psalm 42 11 which says, Why am I so sad?

Why am I so upset? I should put my hope in God and keep praising Him, my Savior and my God. So you didn't make the team you spent weeks practicing for.

You flunked the test even though you studied hard. Your mom got called into work and that trip you've been dreaming of is suddenly canceled. Life comes with so many good things but it also comes with disappointments. When things don't go the way you had planned what do you do? Do you mope around all sad and gloomy? Do you complain or throw a fit? After all you're upset. It's only natural to show it right? What if you chose to do something supernatural instead?

Now when I say supernatural I'm not talking about ghosts or magic or nonsense like that. I'm talking about doing something bigger and better than what people usually do like praising God or looking for something good in the middle of your disappointment or showing others how good God is through the way you act. Okay so you didn't make the team so cheer on your friend who did. Yeah you flunked the test but a number on a piece of paper doesn't make you any less wonderful to God and missing the trip was a bummer so why not think of something closer to home that your family can do together. When you're disappointed don't do what seems natural do the supernatural thing. And the prayer for the day, dear God when things don't go the way I want them to help me remember all the reasons I have to praise you.

Amen. And then the did you know for the day which I have to tell you in our family we never say did you know we always do the highest squeakiest voice we can and we always say to each other did you know it doesn't work unless your voice cracks so we go as high as we can it's a fun little game we do. Here's the did you know. What does Abraham Lincoln's beard have to do with board games? It all started with a man named Milton Bradley. He was a talented lithographer a kind of printer and one of his best-selling prints was a portrait of Abraham Lincoln a beardless Abraham Lincoln.

When Lincoln grew a beard no one wanted the beardless prince anymore. It was a pretty disappointing time in Bradley's life in fact he had to find another way to make a living. He created a board game called the checkered game of life which later became simply the game of life. Thankfully it was a hit. His company went on to create several other games you might have played including candyland operation and battleship.

I think I played all those. Yes so listen everybody you've just been listening to pastor Levi Lusko read from his brand new book roar like a lion 90 devotions to a courageous faith and we want to send you a copy of this book for your gift of any size and whatever you send to us here in the new beginning we'll take those resources that money and channel it into continuing this ministry and even expanding this ministry around the nation and the world so for your gift of any size we'll send you your copy of roar like a lion. It's such an engaging resource the artwork from Catherine Pearson is just stunning and what better time to get a new devotional resource than right here at the start of a new year. So thanks so much for partnering with us we can continue to touch lives with the gospel and to thank you tangibly we'll send the new book roar like a lion by pastor Levi Lusko you can make your donation online at harvest.org or reach us by phone anytime 24 7 at 1-800-821-3300 that's 1-800-821-3300 Hey everybody Greg Laurie here you know my uncle Fred Jordan had one of the first Christian TV programs out there it was called church in the home I remember watching it as a little boy when I was living with my grandparents well we have church in the home for you every weekend it's called Harvest at Home and you can find it at harvest.org we have worship and a message from God's word so join us this weekend for Harvest at Home at harvest.org well next time more insight on angels and demons and an important warning from pastor Greg about the devil and his strategies join us here on a new beginning with pastor and bible teacher Greg Laurie Greg Laurie the preceding podcast was made possible by harvest partners helping people everywhere know God learn how to become a harvest partner sign up for daily devotions and find resources to help you grow in your faith at harvest.org
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-07-02 03:36:10 / 2023-07-02 03:46:34 / 10

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