Wednesday, September 29, 2010

All God's angels come to us disguised

It was pride that changed angels into devils; it is humility that makes men as angels. - Saint Augustine

(Rv 12:7-12ab)War broke out in heaven; Michael and his angels battled against the dragon. The dragon and its angels fought back, but they did not prevail and there was no longer any place for them in heaven. The huge dragon, the ancient serpent, who is called the Devil and Satan, who deceived the whole world, was thrown down to earth, and its angels were thrown down with it.

Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say: "Now have salvation and power come, and the Kingdom of our God and the authority of his Anointed. For the accuser of our brothers is cast out, who accuses them before our God day and night. They conquered him by the Blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; love for life did not deter them from death. Therefore, rejoice, you heavens, and you who dwell in them."

Today, in the feast of the Saints Archangels, Jesus manifests to his Apostles and to everybody else, the presence of his angels and their relation with him. They are in the Lord's celestial glory, where they perennially exalt the Son of man, who is the Son of God. They surround him and are at his service. Angels, we believe, are messengers from God who protect us, heal us, call us, send us, unite us. Michael the Archangel fought against evil (the accuser, the one who deceives) and prevailed. Gabriel, of course, announced to Mary her role as Mother and First Disciple of Jesus. And Raphael was the healer and guide of Tobit, confirming him in his marriage to Sarah.

To live the abundant life and proclaim the full gospel, we must get to know the angels and let them do God's work in our lives (Heb 1:14). The archangels lead other angels, and we must know these three leaders to get acquainted with the others. The Bible names only three angels. This may mean we are to get to know them personally, but we find this difficult since angels are far different creatures than we are.

In fact, it's easier to get to know God than angels because God became man. No angel has become man. Angels are neither human nor divine; they're just angels, totally different from earthly creatures. The Holy Spirit bridges the gap between human beings and the holy angels. After Pentecost, Christians experienced a flurry of angelic activity because the Holy Spirit was teaching them how to make use of the angels' services (Jn 14:26). The Spirit often first acquaints you with Michael (Dn 10:13), who sometimes works with Gabriel (Dn 8:16; 9:21; 10:13). Next you'll meet Raphael (Tb 12:12-15). At that point you'll know the three lead angels, and knowing them puts you in touch with all the heavenly host. God sends angels not as optional extras, but as agents for full life in the Spirit.

Prayer: "St. Michael, the Archangel , defend us in battle. Be our safeguard against the wickedness and snares of the devil. Rebuke him, O God..."

Promise: "I solemnly assure you, you shall see the sky opened and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man." —Jn 1:51

No comments:

Post a Comment