Angels… have been discussed for millennia. They are eternal beings created by God. Some are named specifically, while others are an angel of the Lord, and many are even nameless. One of the first recorded encounters is in Genesis 18, wherein Abraham, and Sarah, were visited by three to announce her pregnancy at an old age. Joanne hand paints her Christmas cards each year, usually depicting an angel.
We have just gone through a season of angelic visitations surrounding the announcement of Jesus’ birth, beginning with Zacharias, husband of Elizabeth, in Luke 1 who hears of his wife’s pregnancy. Later, Mary is visited and told of her pregnancy. Joseph also receives an angelic visit confirming what Mary had been told. Nine months later, an angelic heavenly chorus announced Jesus’ birth to the shepherds on the hills all around. After the birth, an angel directed them to travel to Egypt for their protection.
Isaiah (Ch. 9) prophesied his birth based on what the angel told him 800 years before it happened. While praying, speaking and confessing, Daniel (Ch. 9) received a visit from Gabriel. Others of note are Lot (Gen. 19), Gideon (Judges 6), and Samson’s parents (Judges 13). There are countless others. My research showed 108 in the Old and 165 in the New Testament.
In Hebrews 13.2 we find an interesting thought concerning hospitality. “Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.” Have you ever knowingly or unknowingly encountered an angel? They do God’s bidding, so, you may have and won’t realize it this side of heaven. I have on a few specific instances. But I want you to hear from our daughter Evelyn, who shared the following two experiences.
“I’ve had many angel encounters over the course of my 56 years, but these are the most recent—and they really resonated. One happened on a drive back home to Great Barrington, MA along two-lane country roads after a stressful car-shopping experience two hours away—only to discover my rental car was about to run out of gas. Night had fallen and there were no streetlights, the AAA dispatcher said it would take 90 minutes before help arrived, and I had a squirmy four-month-old puppy in the back seat. Lo and behold, on this deserted stretch straddling the border of Connecticut and Western Massachusetts, a truck slowed down, and a man’s voice called out, “Are you in need of help?” He confirmed I was some 25 miles from the nearest station but he lived a mere five minutes away…and soon returned with a gas can that had just enough fuel to get me there safely, brushing off my offer to pay by saying, “I always make a point to stop and help people.” Praise God!
“Another took place when I was hiking my puppy in a remote area with limited cell service and we were rushing to get back to the car before sunset. As we were approaching the final turn, I saw a (tall, handsome) man in full hiking gear and before I could ask why he was setting out so late, he asked, “Is that your Audi in the parking lot?” Turns out he had found my small black key fob along the trail and had returned to the lot and put it on my hood, hiding it under some foliage. Turns out he had been on Zoom calls all day and needed some fresh air. And when I said there was apparently another reason, he agreed: “I’m your trail angel!”
King of Angels
My only regret is that I failed to ask each of these good Samaritans for his name so I could pray for him specifically, but as Dad (aka Bill Dotson) reminded me, God knows who they are! Yes, and Jesus is King of Angels, dispatching them where they are needed. We’d love to hear your angelic encounter.