What are angels?

Elder George Q. Cannon

Elder George Q. Cannon

In the broadest sense, any being who acts as a messenger for our Heavenly Father is an angel, be he a God, a resurrected man or the spirit of a just man; the term is so used in all these senses in the ancient scriptures. In the stricter and more limited sense an angel is, as the Prophet Joseph states, a resurrected personage, having a body of flesh and bones. But it must be remembered that none of the angels who appeared to men before the death of the Savior could be of that class for none of them were resurrected…

We are taught to believe that Adam was the first man who took a body on this earth. There was no death before he fell. Who, then, was the angel who taught him the law of sacrifice, or of faith and baptism, or who was the cherubim with the flaming sword who guarded the tree of life? We cannot admit that the scriptures are false and that these beings were not angels; neither can we admit that Adam was not the first man and that the Savior was not the first-fruits of the resurrection. Therefore, we are forced to the conclusion that the word “angel” is used in the scriptures for any heavenly being bearing God’s message or fulfilling His commands; and, further, all beings who were created with the design that they should inhabit this earth belong to it and to no other planet. (George Q. Cannon, Gospel Truth, 1:68)

There are no angels who minister to this earth but those who do belong or have belonged to it. (D&C 130:5)

Angels are the offspring of God

Joseph Moroni

Joseph Smith History 1:53

Angels are the children of Heavenly Father. President Joseph F. Smith stated, “When messengers are sent to minister to the inhabitants of this earth, they are not strangers, but from the ranks of our kindred, friends, and fellow beings and fellow servants.” (Gospel Doctrine, p. 435)

Elder Parley P. Pratt said, “Gods, angels and men are all of one species, one race, one great family, widely diffused among the planetary systems, as colonies, kingdoms, nations, etc.” (Key to Science of Theology, 33. See also Gospel Doctrine, p. 112)

Angels are messengers

President Charles W. Penrose said, “Angels are God’s messengers, whether used in that capacity as unembodied spirits, selected according to their capacities as unembodied spirits, selected according to their capacities for the work required, or as disembodied spirits, or as translated men, or as resurrected beings.” (Who and What Are the Angels,” Improvement Era 15 (Aug. 1912), 950.)

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I write about ways scripture applies in our lives: LDSScriptureTeachings.org
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One Response to What are angels?

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