Essay Angels

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The term angel derives from a Greek translation of the Hebrew word mal'akh, which first meant "Shadow side of God," and now means messenger (Jeremiah 59). Angels as an article of faith have become an unshakeable part of our society. One in every ten popular songs involves angels in some way (Freeman 2). They appear in paintings and in museums as sculptures. Our culture is filled with angels that appear on clothing, cards, or as souvenirs, and jewelry. It would be reasonable to assume that one might find the most information about angels in the Christian bible. However , the bible only mentions three angels by name and actually contains very little information about these beings. Almost all of the information we
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The focus of this paper will be on the angels of heaven who make up the heavenly hierarchy and the fallen angles of hell.

The creation of the angelic hierarchy is attributed to Pseudo-Dionysius. St Ambrose is responsible for the categories of angels which were taken from traditions whose origins are lost in time (Bloom 59). There are three hierarchies, each with three orders. The Upper Triad: Seraphim, Cherubim, and Thrones. The Middle Triad: Dominations, Virtues, and Powers. The Lowest Triad: Principalities, Archangels, and Angels (Guiley 17). The Upper Triad: The first triad seems to be centered around a central core of purity and light, closest to God. It is only in the third choir, the last choir of the triad that matter begins to appear. The First Choir - Seraphim: These angels are the highest of God's angelic order. Their names mean "burning ones" (Lang 49). The only mention of Seraphs in the bible is Isa 6:2. They circle the throne of God chanting in Hebrew the Trisagion "Kadosh, Kadosh, Kadosh," which is "Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord of Hosts, the whole earth is full of His Glory" (Godwin 25). The Seraphim are identified with the serpent or dragon. They are in direct communion with God and are of such pure thought and light, they resonate with "the fire of love" (Guiley 17). They are known as the "fiery flying serpents of lightning," who "roar like lions" (Godwin 25). When these angels

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