Tuesday, September 28, 2010
St. Michael and All Angels: 29 September 2010
St. Michael and All Angels
Today we recognise the heavenly hosts. Our Greek brothers and sisters refer to them as the bodiless powers, recognising that angels are essentially spiritual beings. Now just, what are angels? The Greek word, Angel means messenger. Angels and Archangels basically then are messengers sent by God. It is reckoned by theologians that only Angels and Archangels have anything to do with men. The other classes are angels in ascending order are: Principalities, Powers, Virtues, Dominions, Thrones, Cherubim and Seraphim. It is not clear to us the purposes of these various classes of spiritual beings, but we know that they serve God, and the last two, cherubim and Seraphim are reckoned as angels of the presence, that is that they are in the highest heaven with the Lord.
Biblicaly, there are several manifestations of angels. First, we hear of the Angel of the Lord, which for the most part is not reckoned to be an angel, but to be the Lord YHWH himself. Next we run into St Michael, the Archangel who is described in Daniel and Revelations. He is counted as the special angel who is in charge of Israel, and who casts Satan out of heaven. He is again mentioned in Revelations. St. Raphael is mentioned in the book of Tobit and accompanies Tobias on his adventures. St. Gabriel is mentioned in the New Testament, and he is the Angel who announces the birth of Jesus. Uriel is mentioned in IV Esdras. Other angels are not mentioned by name. The Seraphim are described by Isaiah in his vision. The Cherubim are described by Ezequiel in his vision. Thrones are mentioned in Colossians, Dominions in Colossians, Virtues in I Peter, Powers in Colossians, and Principalities in Colossians. It should be mentioned that for most classes of angels, there are corresponding classes of demons. When Satan was cast out of heaven one third of the angels followed him. Therefore angles, spiritual thought they may be, are like us, capable of choosing between right and wrong.
This day we remember especially St. Michael and the other angels who minister to us, and to those in heaven who give us the example of constantly praising God!
Please go to the reference above and look at the 71 versions of St. Michael, truly fascinating.
Collect: Dear Lord, as you created a vast order of angelic hosts to worship you and do your will, grant that we too like your angels in heavens would worship you and do your will. This we ask in the name of our blessed Yeshuah who is higher than the angels. Amen.
Lessons: Isaiah 6:1-3