Book Review: Angels by Billy Graham
I was hoping this book to be a recounting of miraculous angelic interventions, but it is not. This is actually the fourth printing and second editing of his book. The book is about the life of angels, what they do, how they were created, some of the types of angels, their duties, their comforting, their ministering, also their assisting in judgment and more. We can not really know all of the duties of angels, but we can count on their presence.
There are a few stories of angel encounters, but they serve to show the angel’s purpose. The book gives Billy’s insight into how angels manifest themselves to us. He recounts how they came to comfort Jesus, to warn of Herod, to tell the disciples “He is risen” and so on, even how Satan who is also an angel came into his own limited power. The book covers the angels’ presence throughout the entire Bible and how they will continue to be present until the end of times, and be with us in glory.
It was interesting to note that the scriptures he quoted came from several different versions of the Holy Bible, the New International Version, the Amplified Bible, and the New King James Bible. He also referred to several other ministers of the gospel, D. L. Moody, Dr. Vance Havner and Johnson Oatman, Jr. and J. Sweney.
To me a book like this has to have something to take away with it. A quote, a thought, or some prevailing questions that keep you wondering. Unlike a work of fiction where you go away “feeling” different emotionally a non-fiction book worth its weight should make you “feel” mentally.
From the pages of this book. these quotes stand out:
On the difference of angels of God and angels who betrayed God and followed Satan, “Satan and his demons are known by the discord they promote, the wars they start, the hatred they engender, the murders they incite, the opposition to God and His commandments. They are dedicated to the spirit of destruction.” Page 103.
On getting right with Christ before it’s too late, “It’s later than it’s ever been before.” Page 205 “Self-destruction is overtaking us as a human race.” Page 206.
One quote that stands out in particular to me is a story he relates from Dr. Vance Havner’s Though I Walk Through The Valley: it is the story of an old preacher who had a small church but worked through the night on his sermons and was questioned by his wife on why he worked so hard for so few people, his answer is priceless. “You forget, my dear, how large my audience will be!” Dr. Havner adds, “Nothing is trivial here if heaven looks on. We shall play a better game if, ‘seeing we are encompassed,’ we remember who is in the grandstand.” Page 243. This quote is relating back to the verse in 1 Corinthians 4:9 that angels watch what we do. “For I think that God hath set forth us the apostles last, as it were appointed to death: for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to angels, and to men.” I believe that word “spectacle” has many different connotations; one being everything we do is being accounted.
Some questions that I had to ask myself: How many times have angels intervened for me? Can I do something to open my eyes to “see” them? Have I offended an angel who was watching over me? How many times have I left one crying because I chose to sin? How often do they have to pray on my behalf to keep me on the right path? And even are they watching everything? Like in the shower? It is not silly to ask questions, even ones that we cannot know the answer to yet.
It is well known that Dr. Billy Graham is and Evangelist, that is one who preaches the gospel for the purpose of bringing someone to salvation. This book is another link in his commitment to spreading the Word of God. Though it was written in 1975 and edited again in 1995, the words he speaks of the coming of the end of times are even more relevant. The time is even closer.
ISBN: 0-8499-3871-6 “Graham, Billy. Angels. Dallas: Word Pub., 1995.”