Angels and the Rock

An Old Testament theme I have noticed recently is how often angels of God turn up at a rock.

In Genesis 28, Jacob saw the angels of God ascending and descending, and in response sets up the rock (stone) which he had used as a pillow and anoints it with oil.

In Judges 6, the angel of the Lord appears to Gideon, and in response he prepares an offering on a rock, which the angel touches with his staff and fire comes from the rock and consumes it, and the angel disappears.

In Judges 13, the angel appears to Manoah's wife, and in response Manoah prepares a burned offering on the rock, and the angel ascends in the flames.

I guess it should be no surprise because the typology of "the rock" is clearly explained in the New Testament.

For they drank from the spiritual Rock that followed them, and the Rock was Christ. (1Co 10:4)

In the New Testament, it is not "the rock" that the angels of God ascend and descend upon, but on Christ himself, of whom the rock was just a type and shadow.

"Truly, truly, I say to you, you will see heaven opened, and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man." (Jn 1:51)

It is also interesting in this last Scripture, that these words to Nathanael occur just after Jesus changes one of his other disciple's names... from Simon to Peter, and Peter, of course, means... "rock".

Now, I know there is more obvious significance to Peter's name change, but it is interesting, not only in the context, but in light of the fact that now Jesus is ascended to heaven, the ones the angels are dispatched to are his disciples:

And to which of the angels has he ever said, "Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet?" Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation? (Heb 1:13-14)

Just like Jacob, the ministering angelic multitude are ascending and descending all around us whether we perceive them or not.


Christopher Negron said...

Great post Chris! I really didn't see the Hebrews text in that way before (sorry). How is the family? Stay in touch! -Chris Negron USA

Chris HH said...

Thanks, Chris. We are all doing very well. The latest addition to the family is due early December. Our love to you and your family too.

Gavin White said...

Great Post Chris! - Like the link between Christ, Rock and Angels, powerful stuff

Jonathan Edwards said...

love your site Chris. What a post, will certainly be coming back for more

Chris HH said...

Thank you, Jonathan. I appreciate that. I'll be following your blog too - with or without rss ;-)

Akinola Akinyede said...

That's right Chris, the Angels of God encamps round the children of God.