The White House press secretary might make fun of aliens being in our midst — but according to one scientist, the Bible gives clear evidence that they’ve been operating in our world since time began.
And they have a name we all know. They’re called angels.
For decades, scientists have searched the cosmos looking for life on other planets.
The $100 million SETI telescopes (Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence) were created for that purpose.
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But what if those extra-terrestrials were already here, not launched in weather balloons or in UFOs, but in the world in which we live?
Astronomer and physicist Dr. Hugh Ross makes a convincing case that angels are beings that have existed throughout eternity as God’s messengers — and that they operate like any beings would who are not confined to our “space-time dimensions.”
Scientists know there are more dimensions than humans can access.
Ross writes in Salvo magazine, “According to the Bible, these creatures differ from humans in that they are not constrained by either the known laws of physics or the known space-time dimensions. Rather, they exist in a realm distinct from the universe, yet have been granted power to enter the human realm for brief episodes — either in physical or nonphysical form.”
On our “Lighthouse Faith” podcast, Ross, founder and director of the nonprofit Reasons To Believe, expands on this scientific analysis of why it’s perfectly acceptable to believe in the existence of angelic beings.
He says, “If you’ve got a causal agent beyond space and time that created the universe, that causal agent could create other things outside the universe and even grants the power to come into the universe and enter the human realm. So it’s certainly scientifically plausible.”
In the Bible, angels are God’s messengers and ground soldiers, if you will, carrying on God’s business.
There are three different types: Cherubim, Seraphim and then “Living Creatures.”
The Cherubim guarded the entrance to the Garden of Eden after Adam and Eve were expelled for disobeying God.
The Seraphim were only mentioned once in the Bible as the beings who “continually worship the Lord saying, ‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory’” (Isaiah 6:3).
The “Living Creatures” can appear as animals or humans.
The Book of Hebrews says, “Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it.”
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There’s a hierarchy to the angels as well. Archangels are the only angels with names.
Gabriel, probably the most well known, came to Mary to tell her she would be with child and give birth to a son who would be known as Immanuel, God with us (Luke 1:26).
The apocalyptic verses in the Bible also predict that an archangel will herald Jesus’ return (Revelation).
But even without proper names, angels have done a lot of spiritual heavy lifting in the Bible. Scholars believe the “commander of the army of the Lord” (Joshua 6:14), whom Joshua encounters on the eve of Israel’s battle in Jericho, was an angel.
Angels also cared for Jesus after he was tempted by Satan in the wilderness (Matthew 4:11).
And speaking of Satan, he is a fallen angel, Lucifer, whom Jesus speaks of cryptically, saying, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven” (Luke 10:18).
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Jesus’s words tell us two things: One, that Lucifer, once the angel of light, was cast out of heaven for his pride and his unwillingness to serve God. And two, it tells of Jesus’ pre-existence, before he was actually born in the manger in Bethlehem.
But even modern-day people talk about seeing angels and experiencing their presence.
In artist Anne H. Neilson’s book “Angels in Our Midst,” woven in among her ethereal paintings of angels are stories that people have told her about angels who have surrounded them and helped them.
She also describes her own sadness after her stepfather’s unsuccessful surgery. He retained consciousness long enough to point at something in his hospital room. The family didn’t know what he wanted.
When it appeared death was imminent, she writes, “I got a call the next day to head back: We all needed to be there. I was in Charlotte, North Carolina, traveling to Charleston, South Carolina. It was the longest drive I think I have ever taken.”
She went on, “I was shaking and tears were streaming down my face as I would get updates from family members on his condition: I just wanted him to hang on until I got there to tell him good-bye. All of a sudden, still an hour away from Charleston, this amazing peace overcame me. I felt like the Lord was telling me: ‘He was pointing to angels — angels were surrounding him yesterday and he was trying to tell you everything is OK.’”
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Neilson writes that she was filled with “the peace that passes all understanding.” She got to the hospital “just as he flew to heaven into Jesus’ arms.”
Angels have also occupied a lot of our imagination in entertainment.
“Touched by an Angel” was a popular TV show that ran for nine seasons on CBS. It told how angels, who looked like just plain people, were helping earthlings overcome life’s many struggles, letting them know that God is with them.
A movie “Angels in Our Midst” was also released in 2007.
Even in the classical world, angels figure largely. In the German opera “Hansel and Gretel,” the two lost and frightened children pray in the evening for angels to come and guide them and watch over them.
Dr. Hugh Ross also is sure he had an encounter with an angel once that took the form of a German shepherd.
He had gone to visit a five-acre estate and it was dark. But a large dog was at the gate and led him 100 yards to the house.
“And when I got to the front door,” said Ross, “the man said, ‘How did you get here?’ I said, ‘Well, your dog guided me to the front door.’ And he said, ‘Didn’t you see the sign on the gate? It was well lit. It’s a big sign, and it was warning you that there is a trained attack dog on the premises.'”
Ross explained that not only did the dog not bark, it didn’t attack.
It only meekly guided them to the house, where it turns out the man and his family had been praying for guidance.
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Ross said, “The young man that was with me that evening — he said, ‘This is just like the Book of Acts [in the Bible]. God blinded us to the sign, and [an] angel took control of that dog and got us to that door because of that man and his family’s prayers.”
Whether people believe in angels or not has no bearing on whether they actually exist.
But Ross said that science has opened a door to the possibility that our fantasies and heartfelt desires are tapped into a realm outside the “space-time dimensions” where angels trod.