Blogging the Institutes | 1.14.12 | Wrapping It Up on Good Angels

“Blogging the Institutes” is my on-going attempt to paraphrase John Calvin’s work, the Institutes of the Christian Religion. You can find out more about the series in the Introduction. For all the posts in this series, check out the Master List

Wrapping It Up on Good Angels

We should not use angels as way of minimizing God. The Lord provides angels for our protection so that we’re not terrified of our enemies. We should adopt the attitude of Elisha: more are for us than against us. Why would we allow ourselves to be lead astray by angels? Why would we allow them to take the place of God? They will lead us astray if they don’t lead us to Christ, the only Mediator. It is upon Him that we depend and rest.

Remember Jacob’s vision (Genesis 28:12). He saw angels descending to the earth and ascending back up to where God sits. The vision shows us that the service of angels extends to us solely through the intercession of Christ. Jesus himself says, “Truly, truly, I say to you, you will see the heavens opened and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man” (John 1:51). Furthermore, when the servant of Abraham prayed, he did not invoke angels but rather poured out his prayers to the Lord (Genesis 24:7).

God does not use angels in order to share his glory with them. God does not promise to assist us solely through angels. He does not want to our confidence split between himself and angels. We must put away the Platonic philosophy of seeking access to God by means of angels. They do not make God more favorable toward us! Such philosophy is presumptuous and superstitious.

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