Copyright 1994 - 2018 Bill's Bible Basics
Authored By :
Published On :
May 26, 1997
Last Updated :
December 1, 2011
Jesus Was Made A Little Lower Than The Angels, We Shall Judge Angels, Apostle Paul's Deep Spiritual Insights, Strong Meat Is Reserved For Spiritually Mature Brethren, Jesus' Unique Status, Firstfruits Of The Resurrection, New Race Of Beings, Jesus Is Our High Priest Intercessor And Defense Attorney Who Understands Our Human Frailties And Shortcomings, Devil Is A Lying Merciless Legalist Accusatory Prosecuting Attorney, Who Would Stand?, Legalistic Scribes And Pharisees, The Letter Of The Law Kills But The Spirit Makes Alive, Learning Obedience Through The Things That We Suffer, John The Baptist's Status, Christian Self-Sacrifice And Martyrdom, God Wants Us To Stay Alive, Suicidal Death Cults, Future Persecutions, Status Of Angels In Heaven, Improbable That We'll Judge The Angels Who Are Currently In Heaven, Satan And Rebellious Angels Cast Out Of Heaven By Michael, Satan Bound During Millennium, Satan Is Loosed And Then Cast Into Lake Of Fire, Saints Will Not Judge Satan, Saints Will Judge People Of Earth, Fallen Angels And Birth Of The Nephilim, God Sends A Flood To Destroy Nephilim And Mankind, Fallen Angels Cast Into Bottomless Pit To Await Final Judgment, Will Saints Judge Fallen Angels Of Genesis?, Evil Spirits Which Roam The Earth, Are Fallen Angels Doomed?
Some time ago -- actually, over fourteen years ago when I wrote the original version of this series -- I was involved in a conversation in which we were discussing the fact that the Bible states that Jesus was made a little lower than the Angels while He inhabited human flesh. There are actually three verses in the Bible which mention this point. I will quote the verses around them in order to provide the proper context for each one:
"What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him? For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour."
Psalms 8:4-5, KJV
In his Epistle to the Hebrew brethren, we find the Apostle Paul reflecting back on the words of David the Psalmist in describing Christ's Ministry on Earth, as we see by these verses:
"But one in a certain place testified, saying, What is man, that thou art mindful of him? or the son of man, that thou visitest him? Thou madest him a little lower than the angels; thou crownedst him with glory and honour, and didst set him over the works of thy hands: Thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he put all in subjection under him, he left nothing that is not put under him. But now we see not yet all things put under him. But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man. For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings."
Hebrews 2:6-10, KJV
From this point, the discussion that we were holding at that time branched out to include the topic of the judgement of Angels by actual human beings. As surprising as this truth will no doubt be for some of you, this amazing fact can be scripturally verified through the following verse that is found in Paul's first Epistle to the brethren at Corinth, as we see here:
"Know ye not that we shall judge angels? How much more things that pertain to this life?"
1 Corinthians 6:3, KJV
If one takes sufficient time to read the Epistles in their entirety, he will come to understand that the Apostle Paul was knowledgeable of a number of deep spiritual truths which he only touched on lightly in his letters to the Christian brethren. As he himself said "Strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age", as we see by the following verses:
"For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat. For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe. But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil."
Hebrews 5:12-14, KJV
While Paul hinted at certain meaty topics in his Epistles, he didn't provide us with a lot of detail concerning some of them; and quite frankly, he left us wondering about exactly what he meant. This certainly appears to be the case when it comes to his comments concerning the judgment of Angels by human beings. Exactly what Paul meant by this is difficult to say, and is open to personal speculation. An interpretation that I have heard over the years which seems logical and makes sense, is that having partaken of this life as well as the next -- at least when we finally get there -- this will place us in a unique position; just as Jesus also acquired a unique status by having partaken of both the Heavenly Realm, as well as the Earthly Realm.
In fact, we are told that through His physical death on the Cross, Jesus also became the Firstfruits of the Resurrection; that is, the Firstborn, and the progenitor of a new race of beings, which somehow combines flesh and Spirit, as we see by the following verses:
"For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren."
Romans 8:29, KJV
"If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable. But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming."
1 Corinthians 15:19-23, KJV
"Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins: Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature . . . And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence."
Colossians 1:12-15, 18, KJV
"To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect,"
Hebrews 12:23, KJV
"And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,"
Revelation 1:5, KJV
It has been said -- and rightly so -- that one reason why Jesus makes such a great Intercessor for us, is because He came to our planet and lived in the flesh. He experienced all of the feelings and emotions, trials and tribulations, heartaches, temptations, etc. that we humans experience. He truly understands our human frailties, our weaknesses and our shortcomings. The Apostle Paul makes mention of these very points in several of his Epistles, as we see by the following verses:
"Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us."
Romans 8:34, KJV
"For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin."
Hebrews 4:15, KJV
"Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered;"
Hebrews 5:8, KJV
"Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them."
Hebrews 7:25, KJV
For these reasons, Jesus is the very best Defense Attorney that we can possibly have against the accusations of the Devil, who in a sense is the Prosecuting Attorney in the Heavenly Courts. In fact, the New Testament refers to that old serpent as the Father of Lies, as well as the Accuser of the Saints, as we see by these verses:
"Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it."
John 8:44, KJV
"And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night."
Revelation 12:10, KJV
Imagine a slick prosecuting attorney who uses every legal trick in the book in order to try to convince the jury to deliver a guilty verdict for the accused. That's Satan. He believes in no leeway, no mercy and no compassion; just the cold, hard letter of the law; and according to God's Laws, we are all guilty as charged, and worthy of death. Thus, it is written:
"As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one . . . For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;"
Romans 3:10, 23, KJV
"If thou, LORD, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand?"
Psalms 130:3, KJV
"For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord."
Romans 6:23, KJV
That is precisely why Jesus accused the Scribes and the Pharisees of being the children of the Devil. When it came to their treatment of the common people, they were just as cold, hard, uncaring and legalistic as the Devil himself. But, as Jesus and the Apostle Paul both tell us:
"Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life."
2 Corinthians 3:6, KJV
"For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God."
Romans 2:28-29, KJV
"God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth."
John 4:24, KJV
"It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life."
John 6:63, KJV
Just as we are told that Jesus learned obedience through the things which He suffered, in like manner, hopefully, we are also learning -- or at least will learn -- obedience through the things which we suffer in this life, and in the times to come. I am reminded of what Jesus said concerning John the Baptist being the least in the Kingdom in Heaven. Consider this verse:
"Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he."
Matthew 11:11, KJV
Considering that John the Baptist was not only His cousin, but in fact prepared the way of the Lord in fulfillment of the Old Testament prophecies, it doesn't seem likely that Jesus meant for His words to be viewed as a put-down of John. In fact, as I explain in the series "Elijah: Where Are the True Prophets of God?", Jesus informed us that John carried the very same spiritual anointing as the Prophet Elijah of Old Testament fame, as we see here:
"And if ye will receive it, this is Elias, which was for to come."
Matthew 11:14, KJV
So, the question is this: Why would Jesus say that John was the least in the Kingdom of Heaven? One possibility which has occurred to me is that the Lord may have been implying that until one has received their stripes by going all the way and giving their life for the Lord -- as John eventually did -- they are still low in status insofar as God's scale of greatness is concerned. There just seems to be something about self-sacrifice and martyrdom which really gets God's attention and touches His heart. I am reminded of verses such as the following:
"And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it."
Luke 9:23-24, KJV
"And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death."
Revelation 12:11, KJV
Now, please don't misunderstand what I am saying here. I am not suggesting that anyone should go and do something crazy like kill themselves in order to prove their faithfulness and loyalty to God and His Kingdom. Unlike certain death cults we have heard about and read about in recent decades, such as Jim Jones and the Peoples Temple, Heavens Gate, Order of the Solar Temple, etc., God wants all of us to remain alive for as long as possible, so that we can continue preaching the Gospel of Salvation to the lost. He needs us alive, and not dead. After all, as the Apostle Paul writes:
"For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!"
Romans 10:13-15, KJV
For a more in-depth examination of the topic of suicidal death cults, please consider reading my series entitled "Heaven's Gate, Suicide And Other Death Cults".
While at this current time self-sacrifice may simply involve denying our personal wants and needs and dedicating our lives to God's service on a daily basis just as the first Disciples were called to do, who knows what the future may hold. While none of us really knows how bad the situation may eventually become for Bible-believing Christians, in these Latter Days, some of us may eventually be called to give up our physical lives as a testimony to this ungodly world, of our faith in Jesus Christ. Even now, while most Western Christians never worry about being persecuted in a serious way, beyond verbal persecution for the most part, in other parts of the world, -- such as in Muslim and communist countries -- our brethren are already suffering heavy persecution, imprisonment and even death, as a result of their faith in Jesus Christ.
In contrast to the above, let us now consider the state of the Angels in Heaven. As far as we know, they have always lived in the Spirit Realm; and therefore, they have always been Spiritual Beings. They have never suffered the hassles of an Earthly life and human existence. And let's face it; this life can indeed be hard at times; particularly as one acquires new responsibilities, grows older, and then the body begins to slowly break down, and succumbs to a variety of illnesses until death eventually takes its toll. I discuss this topic at length in such articles as "Death: Final Battle, Final Victory".
So considering that the Angels in Heaven are free of all of these things, I would think that they lead a relatively easy existence in the Presence of God. Yes, there are spiritual battles to be fought, but at the same time, from the Book of Revelation, we are given the impression that there is quite a bit of shouting and praising going on near the Throne of God night and day. Not only that, but even though they do partake in spiritual battles, which is made plain by accounts such as we find in both the Books of Daniel and Revelation, they have spiritual bodies which obviously do not tire, grow frail or die as our human bodies do.
So if we consider the situation from this perspective, maybe this explains why human beings can somehow acquire a status which is even higher than that of the Angels. While this may seem plausible to some people, I have concluded that this is not sufficient evidence to support such a belief. My primary reason for embracing this position is simply this: If these Angels have always lived in the Presence of God, and have always been obedient to His Will, then why would there even be any need for us to judge them? It just doesn't make any sense, in my view. Therefore, I believe that it is rather improbable that we will judge the Angels who are currently in Heaven, and obedient to the Lord.
Having said that, there are two other possibilities which come to mind. The first one is that God may possibly allow us to pass judgment on the Fallen Angels who will rebel against Him, and who will follow Satan to the Earth during the Great Tribulation period. As you may recall, the Book of Revelation informs us of the following:
"And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads. And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth . . . And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night."
Revelation 12:3-4a, 7-10, KJV
While the Scriptures clearly inform us that "Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord." -- Romans 12:19 -- is it possible that God will still allow us to pass judgement on these devils and demons who will persecute God's children during the Great Tribulation? To answer in the affirmative would seem to contradict exactly what that verse is stating. In fact, in Revelation chapter nineteen, we learn that after the Battle of Armageddon has come to its conclusion, it is one of the Lord's mighty Angels who binds Satan, and casts him into the Bottomless Pit, where he will remain during the thousand-year Millennial Rule of Jesus Christ and the Saints, as we see here:
"And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years, And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season."
Revelation 20:1-3, KJV
As I explain in such articles as "Satan: Origin, Purpose and Future", following this one-thousand-year imprisonment, the Book of Revelation informs us that Satan will be loosed for "a little season", in order that he might deceive the nations of the world once more. However, ultimately, that foul demon meets his final fate when he is cast alive into the Lake of Fire, as we see by these verses:
"And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison, And shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea. And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them. And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever."
Revelation 20:7-10, KJV
In none of the verses that we have examined, do we find any mention of the Saints passing judgment on Satan, or on any of his cohorts in sin. Apparently then, his judgment, as well as the execution of his sentence, will be carried out either by God Himself, or by Jesus, or by one of the Angels. That the Saints of God do sit in judgment during the one-thousand-year Millennium is a scriptural fact; however, my impression from the following verse is that they will be judging the people of Earth:
"And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years."
Revelation 20:4, KJV
Who then are these Angels that the Apostle Paul says that we will judge? There is another possibility which is worthy of our consideration. As I explain in considerable detail in the series "Nephilim: The Giants of Genesis", as well as in the article "The Book of Enoch: Truth or Heresy?", it is my understanding that at this current time, there is a group of rebellious Angels -- the Fallen Angels who are mentioned in various places in the Bible, as well as throughout the Book of Enoch, and in the Book of Jubilees -- who are currently awaiting Judgment from the Lord.
Being as I discuss this topic in the aforementioned articles, I won't be going into a lot of detail here. However, let me at least provide you with a basic background. The primary sin of these rebellious Angels is that they abandoned their First Estate -- that is, Heaven -- and descended to the Earth, where they engaged in sexual intercourse with the beautiful women of Earth. The result of their vile deeds was the birth of a wicked race of violent giants who are known as the Nephilim. The Book of Genesis and the Book of Enoch both inform us that the situation on Earth grew so violent, and so evil, that God finally determined that He simply had to destroy mankind. In fact, this is precisely what He did when He sent the Flood in the days of the Patriarch Noah. Following is the account from the Book of Genesis:
"And it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born unto them, That the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives of all which they chose. And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years. There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown. And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart. And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them."
Genesis 6:1-7, KJV
As a result of their sins against the Lord, these rebellious Angels are at this time imprisoned in chains in the deepest parts of the Earth. While in the King James Version of the Bible, the Apostle Peter writes that they were "cast down to hell", in the original Greek, the word used is "tartarus". This word signifies the deepest abyss of hell. As I explain in "What Happened to the Evil Spirits Known as Legion?", this is the same place that Legion was sent. I also explain in that article, as well as in a few others, that this abyss is another name for the Bottomless Pit, out of which Abaddon -- or Apollyon -- the Destroyer will arise, accompanied by his demonic horde. Consider the following verses which were written by Peter:
"For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit: By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison; Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water."
1 Peter 3:18-20, KJV
"For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment; And spared not the old world, but saved Noah the eighth person, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly;"
2 Peter 2:4-5, KJV
Please notice in the previous verses that Peter very clearly tells us that these rebellious Fallen Angels are currently "reserved unto judgment". In other words, apparently, they have not been judged yet; at least they hadn't been judged at the time that Peter wrote his Epistle. In his brief Epistle, the Apostle Jude likewise informs us that because they left their First Estate, and committed such a grave sin with the women of Earth, these rebellious Angels are imprisoned in the darkest parts of the Earth, where they are awaiting judgment from the Lord, as we see here:
"And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day."
Jude 1:6, KJV
It is clear then, that unless it already occurred sometime during the past two thousand years, these Fallen Angels are still waiting for their judgment from God, which Jude tells us will occur on the "great day". This begs two questions. First, why haven't these Angels been judged yet? What is God waiting for? Is it possible that they still have some mission to fulfill? And second, when the time of their judgment does arrive, exactly who is going to judge them? While I have a personal theory regarding why God may be waiting on judging these Fallen Angels -- which I may discuss in a separate article at some future date -- I would like to address the second question instead.
In a word, if we consider the fact that these Fallen Angels were directly responsible for corrupting and perverting early mankind, which ultimately led to the destruction of the human race, save for Noah and his immediate family, is it possible that God may leave their final judgment to the Saints? While this is a very interesting question indeed; I am sorry to inform you that at this current time, I do not possess any clear scriptural evidence to say one way or the other.
At the time that I wrote the original version of this series fourteen years ago, someone asked me a question concerning the demons which apparently are still allowed to roam the Earth, even in our present day. To clarify, while the Book of Enoch informs us that the angelic leaders of the rebellion were cast into the Abyss, or Bottomless Pit, and the physical bodies of the giant Nephilim were destroyed during the Flood, it leaves open the question regarding what happened to the spirits of the Nephilim. Some Christians -- myself included -- suspect that these constitue the evil spirits which plagued people in Jesus' day, and which still attack and possess people today as well.
At any rate, this person was wondering if these demons were given a lesser judgment -- that is, by not being outright imprisoned along with the Fallen Angels -- and if God may possibly be giving them a final opportunity to turn back to the Light. He was wondering if all of the Angels who took part in the original rebellion are irreparably doomed.
Well, obviously, I am not God, and therefore, I do not know the Mind of God, or His intentions concerning these demons, or what will be their ultimate fate. Neither do I know if all of the Fallen Angels are irreparably doomed. All that we are told in the various sources that are available to us at this current time, is that they are currently imprisoned, and that they are waiting for their final judgment on that "great day".
Please go to part two for the continuation of this series.
⇒ Go To The Next Part . . .