Do Baptists Believe in Angels? Get the Facts


Angels are important to Christianity because they play a key role in many Bible stories, as purposefully created messengers of God. From Genesis to Revelation, Bible readers learn about how God used angels as well as how people experienced them and even interacted with them.

Baptists believe that angels exist. Baptist denominations and churches have historically acknowledged the presence and value of angels as invisible, spiritual creatures that worship God and serve His plan for the world. The Baptist tradition has affirmed the existence of angels through its history.

What exactly do Baptist believe angels do? What’s their purpose? Do Baptist believe in guardian angels or fallen angels, too. Keep reading to learn more.

Angel statue
“Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.” Hebrews 13:2 (ESV)

Angels in Baptist theology

Many people in modern society are interested in angels. Angels play important roles in stories and art, yet they often aren’t depicted biblically in the entertainment mediums of popular culture. In the Baptist tradition, it has always been important to believe what Scripture says about angels.

What are angels?

Baptists believe that angels are invisible, spiritual beings that God created before the world was made (Job 38:7) to glorify Him (Heb. 1:14). They possess aspects of personality, like intelligence (1 Pet. 1:12), emotions (Luke 15:10), and a will (Isa. 14:12-15).

CharacteristicExample Bible Verse
God created angels before the worldJob 38:7, “when the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy?” Cf. Job. 1:6, Gen. 1:16
God created angels to glorify HimselfNehemiah 9:6, “You are the LORD, you alone. You have made heaven, the heaven of heavens, with all their host, the earth and all that is on it, the seas and all that is in them; and you preserve all of them; and the host of heaven worships you.” Cf. Col. 1:16
Angels are intelligent1 Pet. 1:12, “It was revealed to them that they were serving not themselves but you, in the things that have now been announced to you through those who preached the good news to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven, things into which angels long to look.”
Angels have emotionLuke 15:10, “Just so, I tell you, there is joy before the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”
Angels have a willIsa. 14:12-14, “I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.”
Verses are from the ESV Bible translation

What do Baptists believe angels do?

Angels serve God (Heb. 1:14). One of their primary acts of service is to worship God (Isa. 6:3, Rev. 5:9). Angels are God’s messengers (Luke 2:9-10), minister to believers (Ps. 34:7, Heb. 1:14), and exercise judgment on unbelievers (Gen. 19:1, 13; 2 Thess. 1:7-8). (Also see This Is What Baptists Believe About Salvation)

CharacteristicExample Bible Verse
Angels serve GodHeb. 1:14, “Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation?”
Angels worship GodIsaiah 6:3, “And one called to another and said: ‘Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory!'”
Angels are messengers of GodLuke 2:9-10, “And the angel said to them, ‘Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.'” (Also see Do Baptists Believe Jesus Is God?)
Angels minister to believersPsalm 34:7, “The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear him, and delivers them.”
Angels exercise judgement on unbelievers2 Thess. 2:7-8, “and to grant relief to you who are afflicted as well as to us, when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with his mighty angels in flaming fire, inflicting vengeance on those who do not know God and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus.”
Verses are from the ESV Bible translation
manger crib
“And behold, an angel of the Lord stood next to him, and a light shone in the cell. He struck Peter on the side and woke him, saying, “Get up quickly.” And the chains fell off his hands.” Acts 12:7 (ESV)

Are there different kinds of angels?

Baptists believe that the Bible teaches that angels are organized into a hierarchical system (Dan. 10:13, Eph. 6:12) in which Michael has the highest rank (Jude 9, 1 Thess. 4:16). The organization of angels is mentioned in Scripture, but it isn’t given systematic treatment. (Also see What Bible Translation Do Baptists Read?)

CharacteristicExample Bible Verse
Angels exist within a ranking systemEphesians 6:12, “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.”
Michael is the archangelJude 9, “But when the archangel Michael, contending with the devil, was disputing about the body of Moses, he did not presume to pronounce a blasphemous judgment, but said, ‘The Lord rebuke you.’”
Verses are from the ESV Bible translation

Do Baptists believe angels can take on human form?

Angels exist primarily as spiritual creatures, yet the Bible indicates that they can take on human form (Heb. 13:2), though that is not their normal state. As spiritual being, angels will never die (Luke 20:36).

CharacteristicExample Bible Verse
Angels can take on human form, but it’s not commonHebrews 13:2, “Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.”
Angels will exist foreverLuke 20:36, “for they cannot die anymore, because they are equal to angels and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection.”
Verses are from the ESV Bible translation

Do Baptists believe in fallen angels?

Baptists believe Satan is the chief fallen angel (Job 1:6; Ezek. 28:11-19). He is the opposite, yet unequal enemy of God (Matt. 13:37-39, 1 Pet. 5:8) who was cast out of heaven (Rev. 12:7-9) because his sin of pride (Isa. 14:12-15). (Also see Do Baptists Believe in Original Sin?)

CharacteristicExample Bible Verse
Satan is the chief fallen angelEzekiel 28:17, “Your heart was proud because of your beauty; you corrupted your wisdom for the sake of your splendor. I cast you to the ground; I exposed you before kings, to feast their eyes on you.”
Satan is God’s enemy1 Pet. 5:8, “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.”
Satan was cast out of heavenRevelation 12:7-8, “Now war arose in heaven, Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon. And the dragon and his angels fought back, but he was defeated, and there was no longer any place for them in heaven.”
Verses are from the ESV Bible translation

Demons are fallen angels who followed Satan in his rebellion (Matt. 25:41, 2 Pet. 2:4). They are evil spirits (Mt. 8:16, Luke 8:29) who seek to destroy God’s work (Gal. 4:8, Rev. 16:13-16). Demons are forever established in their sin (Matt. 25:41, Luke 11:24-26). They encourage false doctrine (1 Tim. 4:1) and deceive people to sin (1 Tim. 4:1, Rev. 12:9).

CharacteristicExample Bible Verse
Demons are fallen angelsMatthew 25:41, “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.'”
Demons are evil spiritsMatthew 8:16, “That evening they brought to him many who were oppressed by demons, and he cast out the spirits with a word and healed all who were sick.”
Demons encourage lies1 Tim. 4:1, “Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons.”
Verses are from the ESV Bible translation

Do Baptists believe in guardian angels?

Baptist doctrine has never affirmed the existence of guardian angels. The Bible indicates that angels sometimes protect people, but often what is meant by the term “guardian angel” is that God assigns every believer a certain angel. This idea is based off verses such as:

  • Matt 18:10, “See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that in heaven their angels always see the face of my Father who is in heaven.” (ESV, emphasis added)
  • Acts 12:15, “They said to her, “You are out of your mind.” But she kept insisting that it was so, and they kept saying, “It is his angel!” (ESV, emphasis added)

Do Baptist believe these verses teach about the existence of guardian angels? Most don’t. Baptist theologians and commentators often explain that these verses are referring to angels that were ministering to children and to Peter at particular times and in certain ways, but they aren’t referring to the existence of guardian angels, as defined above.

Do Baptists worship angels? Pray to them?

Worshiping and praying to angels is strictly forbidden in Scripture and to participate in such an activity is an act of sin.

  • Revelation 19:10, “Then I fell down at his feet to worship him, but he said to me, ‘You must not do that! I am a fellow servant with you and your brothers who hold to the testimony of Jesus. Worship God.’ For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.” (ESV, emphasis added)
  • Colossians 2:18, “Let no one disqualify you, insisting on asceticism and worship of angels, going on in detail about visions, puffed up without reason by his sensuous mind.” (ESV, emphasis added)
  • 1 Timothy 2:5, “For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” (ESV, emphasis added)

References:
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Daniel Isaiah Joseph

Daniel has been in Christian ministry for 25 years. He has been an Associate Pastor and a Senior Pastor. Currently in higher education, Daniel has taught more than 25 different undergraduate courses in Bible and theology-related topics.

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