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    §5. NUMBER OF THE ANGELS

    The definite number of the holy angels is not given in the Scriptures, yet there are declarations from which we may form an idea of the vastness of this host of God. Jesus said: “Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to My Father, and He shall presently give Me more than twelve legions of angels?” Matthew 26:53.ATNM 17.1

    John, as he had a view of heaven, the glory and majesty of God, and the vast host of angels worshiping before the throne, spoke of their great numbers thus: “And the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands.” Revelation 5:11. Bengel, in his Gnomon,translates this, “Myriads of myriads and thousands of thousands.” He adds the following excellent note: “A myriad consists of ten thousand; myriads, if only two of them are meant, make twenty thousand; a thousand taken twice, makes two thousands. But there are myriads of myriads, and thousands of thousands, i. e., the myriads are multiplied with each other, and, likewise, the thousands. In order to more easily conceive the meaning, it could be imagined thus: Here is a regiment consisting of ten thousand angels; then there would be ten thousand such regiments, and this not only once, but at least twice. In the same way are thousands to be taken thousand-fold; that is to say, if one counts a thousand angels to one body, then there are of such bodies of thousands (in the plural) at least two thousand bodies. The myriads make two hundred millions, and the thousands two million, a Vast throng!”ATNM 17.2

    While this gives some idea of the greatness of the throng, it is by no means certain that the computation is nearly large enough. Instead of being simply two myriads, as the plural must contain, it may mean many more, which would enormously swell the aggregate. And all these were only those whom John saw worshiping around the throne at one time.ATNM 18.1

    We have no language in which to express the number of the heavenly family; we can have no conception of the number. The Bible declares that they are the messengers of God to carry out His will, and it is reasonable to believe that they are His messengers to other worlds. On a clear night view the stars, consider the millions in the milky way, and remember that each one is a sun, with a whole system of worlds revolving around it, and consider that the angels are God’s messengers to all parts of His dominions, to all these countless worlds, and then we shall best be able to appreciate the words of Paul, that there is “an innumerable company of angels.” Hebrews 12:22.ATNM 18.2

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