Unofficial Notes from
International Conferences for Clergy Questions And Answers
ICC - Questions And Answers - The Fall Of Man, Concerning Angels
QUESTION: 1. Is your statement regarding angels contradictory to the statements made in Psalm 8?
ANSWER: Psalm 8 is not declaring the inferiority of man to the angels. If it were, than it's use in Hebrews 2:6-8 would force us to conclude that Jesus Christ is also inferior to the angels.
The term "made a little bit lower than the angels" does not fully grasp the intent of the Hebrew or Greek texts. A more proper rendering would be "made for a little some (or a little while) lower than the angels". (Psalm 8 and Hebrews 2:6-8) are indicating that for a time period Adam (Psalms) and Jesus (Hebrews) were created in a certain position and would have to grow to perfection and thus to true dominion. Adam was to accomplish this through faith in the commandment and Jesus did accomplish this through suffering (Hebrews 2:10). Once that position of dominion is established, the Son stands in a superior position to the angels. It is why Hebrews chapters 1 and 2 are an unabashed declaration of the superiority of the Son's position to the angels. Jesus was victorious where Adam was a failure.
QUESTION: 2. Were the angels created originally for the intended purpose of serving man?
ANSWER: Hebrews 1:14 declares that angels are to serve the children of God. 1Cor. 6:3 indicates that we are in the position to judge the angels as servants. Thus, from the position of Son and Daughter of God, Adam and Eve were to exert dominion, as indicated by the third blessing, over all things including the angels. Sin, of course, prevented the implementation of that plan.
QUESTION: 3. Is satan Michael the Archangel?
ANSWER: No, Lucifer (Isa 14:12)
QUESTION: 4. Will you please explain the meaning of Gen. 3:3. Also what is a cherubim and what role did he play in the raising of man?
ANSWER: The fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil is not a literal fruit, it is a symbol of love. See Song of Songs 4:12-16, Prov. 30:20. Jude 1:6-7 further testifies that the sin of the angels was the same as Sodom and Gomorrah (fornication). The covering cherub or Ezekiel 28:12-19 is the same Lucifer of Isa. 14:12-15, that is, the angel who was cast out of Heaven because of his rebellion. Cherubim is another name for angel.
QUESTION: 5. Psalms 8:5 says that man was created lower than the angels. How can you assert man's superiority over the angels?
ANSWER: Psalm 8:5 is also used in Hebrew 2:5 to describe Jesus, and yet it is used to affirm the superiority of Jesus over the angels. The question is, what is the meaning of: made "a little lower than the angels"? A more proper exegesis would be, "He was made for a little some or for a little while lower than the angels". This indicates that Adam (and Jesus) were not born with the dominion over the angels but they had to grow to accomplish that position of dominion. Adam was to accomplish it by faith in God's word, Jesus accomplished it by suffering (Hebrews 2:9).
QUESTION: 6. You said that Hebrews chapter 1 and 2 teaches that man is superior to angels. I cannot agree, because Hebrews is teaching that Jesus, not a man in general, is superior to the angels.
ANSWER: Hebrews 1:14 declares angels are ministering spirits sent to serve the "heirs of salvation". This shows that the authority of the Son is bequeathed to us and as a result we stand, likewise, as God's children. As such, we also gain the right to judge the angels (see 1Cor 6:3). Jesus was crowned with glory (Hebrews 2:7) and everything was put under Him. Hebrews 2:10 says that Jesus, in dying, brought us to glory. Hebrews 2:11 states that both the one who makes men holy and those who are made holy are of the some family, so Jesus is not ashamed to call them (believers, not angels) brothers. Hebrew 1:5 states..."to which of the angles did God ever say "You are my Son, today I become your Father". This inheritance is shared with believers, not with angels. Also, see Romans 8:17.
QUESTION: 7. Doesn't Psalms 8:5 declare that man was created "a little lower than the angels?" How can you say that man was to have dominion over the angels?
ANSWER: If we were to take the 8th Psalm as meaning that man is lower in quality and position than the angels, than we must conclude that Jesus is likewise lower in quality and status than the angels because the writer of Hebrews uses the same Psalm 8 to describe Jesus (see Hebrews 2:6-9). If that was our conclusion, of course, we would be in error. A more proper exegesis of Psalms 8 and Hebrews 2:6-9 would be..."He was created for a little while lower than the angels". This indicates that while Adam was still growing, he was under the protection and care of the "guardian cherub", but once Adam had perfected himself, he would then exert the full dominion of the Son of God over all things including the angels. That's why, though Hebrews 2:6-9 repeats the 8th Psalm, the 1st and 2nd chapters of Hebrews are an unabashed declaration of the superiority of the Son and the children of God (over the angels).
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