Summary: Gabriel communicated God’s message to different kinds of people in very different circumstances; although he may have explained the content at different levels, he did not change the content. God’s truth is God’s truth: It is to be believed and undertood!
1. Abraham Lincoln was often called "Honest Abe." His nickname was well-earned; his honesty was extreme.
2. Honesty and integrity are not only virtues of good people, they also characterize the holy angels, including the angel Gabriel.
3. But how do you do the biography of an angel? You do the best you can, that’s how!
4. Everything created was made during the creation week, including the angels. Yet they are not alluded to in Genesis 1. They may have been created with the heavens (when God created the heavens and the earth), or they may have been created with the stars.
5. Both angels and stars are called, "the host of heaven." My viewpoint is that every angel was given a star.
6. But the strongest angel, Lucifer, wanted to be God. He led a rebellion, probably taking about 1/3 of the angels with him. Lucifer, star of the morning, became known as Satan, the adversary, and the angels who followed them became known as demons.
7. So when we speak about angels, we are talking about the good angels, called the holy or elect angels.
8.Angels and demons have their ranks, like archangels (Michael is an archangel), principalities, powers, and dominions. They may assume various forms. For example, some of the angels are cherubim; Lucifer was a cherub, for example. Others are seraphim. Others are -- who knows what? But they usually appear to humans and humans. There are not records in Scripture of angels appearing as humans with two wings. But it makes for nice artwork. And they are never described as fat little babies with wings. That picture probably comes from Greek religion and belief in Cupid.
9. There is one angel, more than any other, that is associated with Christmas, and that is the angel Gabriel.
10. Gabriel means "God Is Powerful." Gabriel seems to be an "interpreter." The term "angel" in Greek can also mean messenger, and so the fact that the New Testament writers chose to use this word implies that one of their main functions is to communicate messages from God.
Main Idea: Gabriel communicated God’s message to different kinds of people in very different circumstances; although he may have explained the content at different levels, he did not change the content. God’s truth is God’s truth: It is to be believed and undertood!
I. Gabriel and DANIEL (Daniel 8:15-16, 9:20-22)
A. Daniel had seen confusing VISIONS (8:15-16)
B. Gabriel ministers by INTERPRETING
C. He provides insight and UNDERSTANDING (9:20-22)
D. He is a MESSENGER from the Lord
E. Many LEGENDS grew around Gabriel
"The three angels that appeared to Abraham (Gen. xviii.) were Michael, Gabriel, and Raphael; Michael, as the greatest, walked in the middle, with Gabriel to his right and Raphael to his left (Yoma 37a). Michael stands at the right hand of God, Gabriel at His left (Jellinek, ’B. H.’ v. 166). Throughout Jewish literature Michael appears as an angel of a higher degree, as may be seen in the passages quoted below. Gabriel has the form of a man (Dan. viii. 15, ix. 21), and is, according to the Talmud, the ’man clothed with linen’ mentioned in Ezek. ix. 3 and x. 2 (Yoma 77a)." [Source: Jewish Encyclopedia]
• Daniel was given some deep revelations; he needed help to understand them.
• Some of God’s truth is deep, it is rocket science sometimes. Because it is deep, however, does not mean we should ignore it.
• Sometimes we need help and guidance from those better versed in the Word. That’s the way the Body is supposed to work.
• And that’s why elders who "work hard at preaching and teaching" receive double honor; most of that "work" is research and study!
• This all implies that we must worship God by engaging our minds. If you are not willing to think deeply, then you do not love God with all your mind.
God’s truth is God’s truth: It is to be believed and undertood!
II. Gabriel and ZECHARIAH (Luke 1:11-20)
A. Gabriel INORMS and EXPLAINS to Zechariah
B. Zechariah INSULTS Gabriel and God Through Unbelief
C. Gabriel Announces DISCIPLINE to Zechariah
• We tend to excuse ourselves as unable to understand, when, in reality, we are unwilling to believe.
• Zechariah was not mentally slow, but he had a narrow, rigid, "everything in unbending categories" mind: Senior citizens do not have babies, even if an angel says otherwise.
• Refusing to open your mind to new possibilities and to embrace the real truth of God’s Word is not just a weakness, but a sin.
• Zechariah was not disciplined for a weakness, but for a sinful attitude.
• Are our minds open to the Word of God, or have we stopped thinking?