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    Q: #429. Do we have guardian angels?

By: Steve Shirley

    A: First, I should point out that (Heb 1:14) says this of angels: "Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?" In other words, angels minister to Christians, and not non-Christians. The Bible mentions angels about 180 times, and they are shown to do many things for believers. However, since the topic is "guardian angels," I will not go into these things. If you want to know more about angels, please go here.

     Regarding whether or not Christians have guardian angels, Bible scholars have to admit that the Bible doesn't clearly answer this question. However, there is some evidence pointing to the possibility. The most used verse to show this is found in (Mt 18:10) when Jesus says, "Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven." This seems to show that "little ones" have "their angels" which are constantly in contact with God the Father. Who are the "little ones?" While some believe this is literally speaking of small "children," reading this verse in context (verses 1-10), points pretty clearly to the "little ones" being "all believers who are children of God." The verses which follow in the "Parable of the Lost Sheep" (Mt 18:12-14) also reaffirm this conclusion. (Also see: Mt 10:42)

     Moving on from this, here are two others verses pointing to guardian angels.

(Ps 91:9-12) Because thou hast made the Lord, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation; (10) There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling. (11) For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. (12) They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.

(Ps 34:7) The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them.

     Some also point to the fact that when Jesus was on Earth, He had angels "minister" to Him on two occasions: at the end of His temptation in the wilderness (Mt 4:11)(Mk 1:13), and during His time of agony in the Garden of Gethsemane: (Lk 22:43). In (Mt 4:5-6)(Lk 4:10-11), Satan said that if Jesus jumped off of the Temple, angels would prevent His harm.

     Some believe that when an angel released Peter from prison (Acts 12:5-10), this was an example of a guardian angel. It is also worth noting that when Peter went to the house of John Mark after his release, and the servant girl reported to those who had gathered there to pray that Peter was free and standing outside, they didn't believe it, but said "it is his angel" (Acts 12:15). Perhaps they were showing their belief in guardian angels too? Notice in (Dan ch. 6), that when Daniel was thrown in the lion's den, (Dan 6:22) says "My God hath sent his angel, and hath shut the lions' mouths, that they have not hurt me." In (1 Kin 19:5-8), we see an angel ministering to Elijah.

     The Bible says there are countless numbers of angels (Heb 12:22)(Rev 5:11)(Dan 7:10). This being the case, it sounds like there are more than enough angels for each Christian to have an angel (or more than one) assigned to "guard" them if God so wished. In addition, we generally believe that all Christians are constantly persecuted by demons (fallen angels). There are one-third less of these fallen angels than there are angels who still serve God (see: Rev 12:4, Isa 14:12, Rev 9:1). Therefore, this also points to there being more than enough angels for each Christian.

     However, I also need to add this. Angels were created by God to carry out His will and plans (Ps 103:20)(2 Chr 32:21)(Heb 1:7). This being said, we need to be VERY careful about making it appear that angels act without first having God's approval. In other words, if they are following us wherever we go, we should not say that they "independently" decide to just jump in if they see a problem (i.e. an accident about to occur). Yes, they may protect us from an accident, but this in response to God TELLING them to do this, as a part of His will for our lives. God's angels do NOT act apart from God's orders.

     Based upon what I see in the Bible, as well as "thousands" of stories about angels protecting Christians, I find it quite possible that guardian angels could be assigned to each Christian. However, it is also possible that God, in His omniscience, omnipotence, and omnipresence, knows and sees everything that is going on, and sends His angels to people as needed. And honestly, we also need to understand that God doesn't NEED to use angels to do ANYTHING. He can protect us, guide us, help us, and more all by Himself.

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