Angels versus Jesus
Think of some of the great rivalries in sports: Magic vs. Bird, Brady vs. Manning, Federer vs. Nadal. Or think of certain movies where monsters were placed against one another like King Kong vs. Godzilla or Aliens vs. Predator. Well, today I want to look at angels vs. Jesus. Now, of course, they are not against each other, at least not the holy angels. Demons are against Jesus, but I’m talking about pure, faithful angels. When I say angels vs. Jesus, I mean Jesus compared and contrasted with the holy angels. We see the beauty of Jesus as we compare him to the angels and contrast him with them to reveal his supreme superiority.
(1) There are many angels, but only one Jesus. No one except God knows exactly how many angels there are. But Scripture does tell us that there is a multitude of angels (Heb 12.22; Rev 5.11). Jesus spoke of being able to call down more than 12 legions of angels (Matt 26.53). A legion included six thousand soldiers. Twelve times six thousand is 72,000. There are many more angels than that. There are countless angels. Yet, there is only one Jesus. He is absolutely unique and superior to all the angels. God has many angels, but he has only one Son by nature, Jesus Christ (John 1.18; 3.16).
(2) Angels were created; however, Jesus is the Creator. Angels have not always existed. Only God is inherently eternal. Only God has existed from everlasting to everlasting (Ps 90.2). At some point God created the angels. They had a beginning. But not the Son of God, he is eternal (Heb 13.8. It was through Christ that everything else was created, even the angels (Col 1.15-18). That is why he is superior, and he alone is worthy of our worship and praise.
(3) Angels can appear as human, but Jesus the Son of God became human. At various places in the Old Testament and the New, angels appeared to people, and they often appeared in human form, for people mistook them for humans (Heb 13.2). But they weren’t really human. They just looked human. They just took a human appearance for a specific purpose. They didn’t become human or remain human, but Jesus did. He became a human being and lived among us and died for us to be our Savior (John 1.14).
(4) Angels are supernatural; Jesus is divine. Angels are supernatural, that is, they exist above and beyond this natural world. They are invisible to the naked eye. That’s why they are called “spirits” (Heb 1.7). Even when angels are present among us today, and they are, we aren’t able to see them. They are supernatural. Yet, Jesus is more than this; he is divine. He possesses full deity (John 1.1; Col 2.9-10). Angels are not divine. They worship the one who is divine: Jesus (Heb 1.6). Jesus is superior to the angels, for he is God.
(5) Angels are powerful, but Jesus has all power. Angels are incredibly powerful. In 2 Kings 19, we read how one angel struck down 185,000 Assyrian soldiers. That's pretty powerful. An angel rolled away the stone at Jesus' tomb, which a normal human being was not able to do alone. Angels are powerful, but not omnipotent. Yet, Jesus is. Once he calmed a raging storm by his spoken word (Matt 8.23-27). He raised Lazarus from the dead after he had been deceased for four days. No man could do this. No angel did this, but Jesus did. He has all power (Matt 28.18).
(6) Angels can help us, but only Jesus can save us. Angels are sent to help those who believe in the Lord. That is their job (Ps 91.11-12; Heb 1.14). They serve us and help us, but they can’t save us. Only Jesus can save us. He died on the cross for our sins and rose again the third day. The angels witnessed this and told the disciples that Jesus was alive. But they did not die and rise on our behalf. Only the Son of God could do this for us. Christ alone is Savior (Acts 4.12). So don’t look to angels to save you. Look to Christ alone!
-Dr. Mark Jackson