Many people regard angels as guardians. For others they are sentinels of good that champion truth and justice. But, for most believers, they are heaven’s messengers. However, do we really know if they really exist? Let’s take a look at some beliefs about angels.
Since time immemorial, the question of their existence or even just the belief in angels has captivated and lingered on in the minds and lives of countless people. They've been given many names, from seraphs, archangels, cherubs, and guardian angels to spirit and messengers, among others.
Many claim to have had ‘real’ experiences with angels, mostly of a spiritual nature, and believe that their existence is important to us as human beings in need of spiritual guidance and protection. There’s no definite information that teaches us how angels first came into being, but it surely can be traced back to the history of man and the stories that come along with it.
They have been commonly perceived as spiritual messengers of a supreme divine nature, for which traditions and beliefs usually differ as to whether angels have their own free will or are only allowed to follow the supreme entity’s will.
Although many believe that angels can have various appearances, depending on a people’s culture, tradition or belief, they do have one common denominator, that it takes on the shape of a human being. This is mainly because most people believe that angels were previously humans in an earlier incarnation and took on the form of an angel after passing over to the afterlife.
Over time, different religious cultures have had their own ideas and beliefs regarding the existence and characteristics of angels, from Christianity to Judaism. Almost every other religious discipline has developed concepts with various similarities that make the belief in angels popularly held across all cultures.
Most of these principles revolve around a common principle of a ‘messenger’ asked to do the work of a deity. But in most cases, the most popular concepts of angels are held strongly by the Christian faith.
This is strongly evidenced in Biblical scriptures that lend proof of their existence as messengers of God and the belief in angels has since then gained popular following among many devout Christians.
A similar traditional belief has is also being mentioned in post-Biblical Judaism, with almost similar significance and principles as that of the Christian faith.
It was believed that early Christians inherited the Jewish idea of angels and, in the early stages of Christianity, the concept of an angel took a different twist as angels being messengers of God and a reflection or manifestation of God. As time passed, angels then came to be known as individual messengers of God. Two of the most commonly identified angel messengers are Michael and Gabriel, but they are among many others.
These angelic descriptions later took shape through studies in theology and popular art. Centuries later, church leaders declared that angels belonged to different categories, with specific activities and missions that were assigned to them.
Other popularly held concepts of angels are carried on throughout the Christian world and have earned the respect of many Christians, regardless of whether angels actually make contact with people or not.
One thing is for sure... wanting to believe in and understand all about angels is an important element of the faith of many spiritual people who are participating in many different religious paths.