“And there appeared an angel unto him from heaven, strengthening him.”
This instance of the Lord being seen of angels while in his human form upon the earth occurs in the Garden shortly before he is arrested and headed for the cross. The Lord has just prayed regarding the cup passing from him, or what he is about to endure for the sake of his people, and this angel appears unto him. Much like after the temptation in the wilderness the angel comes to minister unto the Lord, this time in the form of strengthening him. Certainly, the God of all the earth does not need one to comfort or strengthen because he is the source of all comfort and strength. But the human side needs strengthening. What comfort this ought to provide to us as believers. If the angels came to comfort the Lord, certainly he will send his angels to strengthen us in times of need as well. May the Lord bless you this day.
“Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.”
Yesterday we considered the angels looking upon our Lord at his birth. In today’s verse the angels have come to minister unto The Lord after his days of fasting and defeating the devil in his temptations. What exactly the angels did to minister unto The Lord is unknown from the text. What we can be sure of though is that if they cared for him they also care for us.
“And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.”
The scriptures teach us that the Angels in heaven have many characteristics but one of the greatest is a curiosity regarding the affairs of men. They are especially curious regarding the work that was done by Jesus Christ for our salvation. Here we see an event that took place shortly after the birth of Christ. An angel has appeared to the shepherds in the field and then the angel is joined by the heavenly host. They have looked upon Jesus as a babe. These angels that have been in heaven with Christ Jesus, who have witnessed the work he has done in the life of his people for centuries, have now seen Christ in all his glory as a babe born unto a woman. Certainly this event must have brought many questions to their mind but the questions are not what scripture presents. Rather, the angels go and sing his praises unto those that need to hear them. The Lord was seen of angels at his birth and they spread the message of his glory.
“Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
When we think of the many things in scripture that can be a source of encouragement in our lives none could be greater than this verse. The truth that Jesus Christ endured the shame and reproach of death on the cross because he saw us and we are his joy is overwhelming. When all else is failing the knowledge that the very creator of the universe died for you individually cannot be taken away. This knowledge should strengthen our steps and liven our hope from day to day.
> “The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer;
> my God, my strength, in whom I will trust;
> my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower.”
A fortress is a tremendous place. It provides protection for those that are in the middle of a battle and often cannot provide for themselves. A fortress is somewhere we flee to in times of greatest need. What encouragement we should take from the knowledge that Christ is our fortress. The protection that we need in times of greatest distress. Truly how great a savior Jesus our Lord is in our lives.