Summary: Message looks at who angels and demons are, what they do, and some cautions.
Do Angels and Demons Really Exist?
Rev. Brian Bill
July 27-28, 2019
Imagine waking up this morning and Iranian tanks and missiles are pointed at your house with members of the Revolutionary Guard shoulder to shoulder encircling your property. They are there because you were accused of espionage. How do you feel? What would you do?
Something similar happened about 3,000 years ago as recorded in 2 Chronicles 6 when the King of Syria became furious because he thought someone in his ranks was a spy. When he was told the Israelite prophet Elisha could hear the “words you speak in your bedroom,” he sent horses, chariots and an immense army to surround Dothan, the city Elisha and his servant were in. Verse 15 says: “When the servant of the man of God rose early in the morning and went out, behold, an army with horses and chariots was all around the city. And the servant said, ‘Alas, my master! What shall we do?’” The word “alas” means, “Oh, no!” and refers to deep despair coupled with great fear.
Elisha’s response in verse 16 is startling: “Do not be afraid, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” I picture his young aide rolling his eyes and saying something like, “Are you kidding me? There’s just you and I here. I don’t see anyone else.”
Then Elisha prays this 10-word prayer in verse 17: “O Lord, please open his eyes that he may see.” The answer comes quickly: “So the Lord opened the eyes of the young man, and he saw, and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.” The word “behold” has the idea of surprise and certainty and means something like, “Look now!” Innumerable horses and chariots of fire were around Elisha! I’m sure this made the young millennial think of what happened when Elijah was taken up to heaven in 2 Kings 2:11: “And as they still went on and talked, behold, chariots of fire and horses of fire separated the two of them. And Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.”
Most of us determine reality through our physical senses, but for Elisha the spiritual world was what was real. Notice Elijah didn’t ask for the angels to show up but instead for his servant to see they were already there.
Right here and right now, there is an invisible world that is more real than the world we live in. Jack Graham says, “There’s more to life than what you see.” Angels and demons surround us; we just can’t see them. Ephesians 6:12 says, “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.”
Prayer. Let’s ask the Lord to open our eyes as we begin.
Last weekend we asked the question, “Why is the Christian life so difficult?” We found the answer in Luke 9:23: “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.” Jesus calls us to desire, to deny, to die and to be devoted. While salvation is delightful, discipleship is often difficult.
I wanted to add another thought. We are called to be disciples who make disciples. Nino Saldivar, who has a heart for discipling men, passed along a Barna study that asked churchgoers this question: “Have you heard of the Great Commission?” Sadly, over half said they had no clue and another 25% said they vaguely remember it but can’t recall it’s exact meaning. Let me remind you of the words of Jesus in Matthew 28:19-20: “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” BTW, our next baptism will be on August 18 in Tom and Sue Hammar’s swimming pool.
Will you follow Christ and then make sure someone is following you as you follow Him? We have several discipleship groups for men and women and also a number of Growth Groups. I hope you’ll join one.
Our question today is, “Do Angels and Demons really exist?” We’ll start by seeking to understand what the Bible teaches about the good angels and then we’ll learn about evil angels. I do want to give a parental warning since we’ll be focusing on some things your younger children may not be ready for.
Understanding Elect Angels
I grew up going to a church with a lot of angels displayed everywhere, even the ceiling. I became somewhat of an expert on these heavenly hosts. I’d study them intently during the sermon because they were certainly more interesting than anything the pastor had to say! Some of you are looking for angels right now. While you might not see them on walls or windows, they’re certainly here.