We have been discussing the nature of Christ. From our study, we learned that the "compound name" used most frequently in the Bible is "Lord of Hosts." This name appears nearly ten times the sum of all the other compound names in the Scriptures
Hosts, by the way, are not people who invite you to a party; hosts are armies. The Lord is Lord of armies, units that come against the gates of hell, and the gates of hell cannot withstand them. Every church is an outpost on assignment in a war. Of course, there is love and grace in each church, but there should also be a war mode -- and strategies that have come from Heaven to advance against the darkness of its time and place.
Yet the enemy has seeded in the minds of many Christians false images of the Lord and His angels. Consider the nature of angels. Angels are spirits that are sent to help those who have come to Christ. Angels are warriors, full of power and might. A true angel is scary. Yet every winter millions pull out the Christmas decorations, take the treetop angel, position it and plug it in. A beautiful, white, blond woman with wings and a long dress lights up and the tree is complete.
But angels in the Bible are always depicted in a masculine form with masculine names. They are fierce warriors of righteousness. I have seen angels. First, they are ageless. Second, they are uncompromisingly righteous. Third, unless they seeking to hide their angelic identity, their energy level and intensity is terrifying. Fourth, they are not women or children. Fifth, they are not men either. They appear in masculine form as an image of strength, but they are, in fact, without gender. (I am not saying that angels can't appear to Christians in a feminine or comforting form, but there are no references to feminine angels in the Bible).
Just once some Christmas I would like to see a real angel show up on top of the tree just as I plug in the light. Bam! Nuclear glory radiating, instantly frying the Christmas tree into a skeleton of smoldering sticks; everyone in the family slain spiritually, unable to move for hours under the weight of the angelic presence. A true "touched by an angel" episode and a Christmas to remember!
Another false image of angels is that they look like Gerber babies with wings -- beings which are as harmless as they are cute. The Cupid form of an angel originated in ancient Greece where he was known as Eros, the young son of Aphrodite, the goddess of love and beauty. To the Romans he was Cupid, and his mother was Venus. This comes from Greek mythology. These images do not originate from the Scriptures.
Those were not "Gerber babies" that sang around the manger the holy night Christ was born. They were mighty, warring heavenly beings singing in awe of the sacrifice of the great King. If I were in dread conflict with an evil principality or power, and I called on the Lord for help and a giant Gerber baby showed up, I would not feel much comfort. I don't care if he were fifty feet tall. If he were wearing a diaper, I would not be greatly reassured.
I want a real angel to show up, massive, terrifying, sword drawn, lightening flashing from his eyes and hands, and with six wings. Real angels do not wear diapers. They are warriors in service to the Lord of Armies. They know how to fight.
Reveal His Triumph! Whatever your battle, the Lord of Armies is there for you. It was He who rescued you from the powers of darkness in the first place; it is this same Lord who comes now to anoint you for war and deliver you from the hand of the enemy. Indeed, the name Jesus by which we call our Redeemer is the transliteration of the Hebrew Joshua, the great general who led the armies of God into the Promised Land. Jesus means "Deliverer" as well as "Savior."
Consider David's revelation of the Lord of Hosts and pray likewise for yourself: "He delivered me from my strong enemy, and from those who hated me, for they were too mighty for me. They confronted me in the day of my calamity, but the Lord was my stay. He brought me forth also into a broad place; He rescued me, because He delighted in me" (Psalm 18:17-19).
Here is another promise: "Fear not, for you will not be put to shame; and do not feel humiliated, for you will not be disgraced; but you will forget the shame of your youth, and the reproach of your widowhood you will remember no more. For your husband is your Maker, whose name is the Lord of hosts; and your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel, who is called the God of all the earth" (Isaiah 54:4-5).
In this day of great shaking and increased warfare, let us each possess the attitude of the God of Armies. Let us follow Him who always leads us in His triumph in Christ. Yes, let us be true followers of the Lord of Hosts. Master, reveal Yourself to me as you did to Joshua on the plains of Jericho -- as the great Captain of the Hosts. Help me to follow you and to develop within me the war cry of the Almighty! In Jesus' name. Amen.
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