Some respected teachers in the body of Christ insist that we can and should practice "commanding angels." Is that biblical? Is it logical? Angels are "ministering spirits sent out to minister to those who will inherit salvation?" (Heb. 1:14b). So, shouldn't we exert some kind of authority over them?
Of course, there is an opposing view. If individual believers could command angels, wouldn't there be absolute confusion in the angelic world? Think of the chaos. What if all the over two billion believers in the world thought they could command angels and were sending up dozens of "commands" daily? How could the angels sift through what was acceptable to God and what wasn't? What if those commanding were contradicting each other in serious ways? Who should be obeyed? The one who commands the loudest or most forcefully?
Let's consider examples of great leaders in biblical history, such as Moses, who spoke of when the children of Israel "cried out to the Lord, He heard our voice and sent an angel and brought us out of Egypt" (Num. 20:16). Moses and the people of Abraham did not command the angel; they cried out to God.
A Revealing Scripture
"Bless the Lord, you His angels, who are mighty, and do His commands, and obey the voice of His word. Bless the Lord, all you His hosts, you servants who do His pleasure" (Ps. 103:20-21).
Jesus is the Lord of hosts, the God of an army of angels. Normal protocol in any branch of the armed forces on earth is this: Normally, no officer would ever give commands to soldiers under another officer's charge, or there would be a breakdown of the chain of command.
The Angel in the Lion's Den
In Daniel 6:21-22, Daniel said to King Darius, "O king, live forever! My God sent His angel and shut the lions' mouths so that they have not hurt me, because innocence was found in me before Him; and also before you, O king, I have done no harm." Daniel did not summon the angel. God sent it.
The Apostle Peter in Prison
The church in Jerusalem prayed for Peter when he was in prison. He later testified, "Now I certainly know that the Lord sent His angel and delivered me from the hand of Herod" (Acts 12:11a). Even the great apostle Peter did not boast that he had brought the angel on the scene through his apostolic authority.
Jesus, the Son of God
What about Jesus, the Son of God? Did He command angels when He was on the earth? You may be surprised by the answer.
Listen to this episode of Revealing the True Light with Mike Shreve on the Charisma Podcast Network to hear more on this compelling subject.
Mike Shreve has been involved in evangelism (outreach to the world and ministry to the church) since 1971. His passion is to offer a faith-filled, grace-founded, Jesus-focused, power-imparting presentation of the Gospel. The motto of the ministry concisely communicates his mission statement: "speaking the truth in love" (Eph. 4:15).
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