ANGEL 479 ANGEL ii, 5. It should moreover he noted that the He- brew word nephilini rendered gigantes, in vi, 4, inay meun "fallen ones". The Fathers generally refer it to the sons of Seth, the chosen stock. In I K., xix, 9, an evil spirit is said to possess Saul, though this is probably a metaphorical expression; more e.xplicit is 111 K., xxii, 19-'J3, where a spirit is depicted as appearing in the midst of the heavenly army and offering, at the Lord's invitation, to lie a lying spirit ill the mouth of Achab's false prophets. We might, witli tlie Schohistics, explain this as malum ■pa-inr, wliicli is actually caused by (iod owing to man's fault. A truer exegesis wouUl, however, dwell on the purely imaginative tone of the whole episode; it is not so much the mould in which the message is ciLst as the actual tenor of that mes.sage which is meant to occupy our attention. The picture afforded us in Job, i and ii, is equally imaginative; but Satan, jHjrhaps the earliest indi- vidualization of the fallen Angel, is presented as an intruder who is jealous of Job. lie is clearly an inferior being to the Deity and can only touch Job with (lod's permission. How theologic thought advanced ;us the sum of revelation grew appears from a comparison of II K.,xxiv, l,with I Paral., .x.i, I. Whereius in the former pas.s;ige David's sin was said to be due to "the wrath of the Lord" which "stirred up David", in the latter we read that "Satan moved David to number Israel". In Job. iv, 18, we seem to find a tlefinite declaration of the fall: "III His angels He found wickedness." The Septua- gint of Job contains some instructive passages re- garding avenging ansels in whom we are perhaps to see fallen spirits; thus xxxiii, 23: "If a thousand deatlwlealing angels should Ix; (against him) not one of them sliall wound him"; and xx.xvi, 14: "If their souls should l>erish in their youth (through rashness) yet their life shall Ije wounded by the angels"; and xxi, I.t: "The riches unjustly accumu- lated shall be vomited up, an angel shall drag him out of his house;" cf. Prov., xvii, 11; Ps., xxxiv, 5. G; Ixxvii, 49, and especially, Kcclus., xxxi.x, 33, a text which, as far as can Ix; gathered from the present state of the MS., was in the Hebrew original. In some of these passages, it is true, the angels may be regarded ius avengers of Ciod's justice without there- fore being evil spirits. In Zach., iii, 1-3, Satan is called the adversary who pleads before the Lord against Jesus the High Priest. Isaias. xiv, and Ezech.. xxviii, are for the Fathers the loci classici regarding the fall of .Satan (cf. TertuU., adv. Marc., II, X); and Our Lord Him.self has given colour to this view by using the imagerj' of the latter passage when s;iyine to Ilis Apostles: "I saw Satan like lightning falling from hejiven" (Luke, x, 18). In New Testament times the idea of the two spiritual kingdoms is clearly established. The devil is a fallen angel who in his fall has drawn multitudes of the heavenly host in his train. Our Lord terms him "the Prince of this world" (John, xiv, 30); he is the tempter of the human race and tries to involve them in his fall (Matthew, xxv, 41; II Peter, ii, 4; K|)hes., vi, 12; II Cor., xi, 14; xii, 7). Christian imagerv of the devil as the dragon is mainly derived from the .^fxjcalypse (ix, II-I.t; xii, 7-9), where he is termed "the angel of the bottomless pit", "the dragon", "the old .serpent", etc., and is represented a-s having actually been in combat with the Arch- angel Michael. The similarity between scenes such as thi"sc and the early Babylonian accounts of the struggle U'twccn Merodach and the dragon Tianiat is verj- striking. Whether we are to trace its origin to vagie reminiscences of the mighty saurians which once peopled the earth is a moot question, but the curious reader may consult Boussct, "The . ti-christ Legend" (tr. by Keane, London, 1890). The translator haa prefixed to it an interesting discussion on the origin of the Babylonian Dragon- Myth. The term A-ngel in the Septuagint. — We have had occasion to mention the Septuagint version more than once, and it may not be amiss to indicate a few pas.sages where it is our only source of informa- tion regarding the angels. The liest known passage is Is., ix, (), where the Septuagint gives the name of the Messias as "the Angel of great Counsel". We have already drawn attention to Job. xx, 15, where the Septuagint reads ". gel" instead of "God", and to xxxvi, 14, where there seems to be question of evil angels. In ix, 7, Septuagint (B) adds: "He hath devi-sed hard things for His Angels"; but most curious of all, in ., 14, where the Vulgate and Hebrew (v, 19) say of "liehemoth": "He is the beginning of the ways of tiod, he that made him shall make his sword to approach him ", the Septua- gint reatls: "He is the beginning of God's creation, made for His . gcls to mock at", and exactly the same remark is made about " Leviathan", xii, 24. We have already seen that the Septuagint generally renders the term "soils of God" by "angels", but in Dcut., xxxii, 43, the Septuagint has an addition in which both terms appear: "Uejoice in Him all ye heavens, and adore Him all ye angels of God; rejoice ye nations with His people, and magnify Him all ye Sons of God." Nor does the Septuagint merely give iLS these additional references to the aiifiels; it sometimes enables us to correct difficult i)assages concerning them in the Vulgate and Massoretic text. Thus the difficult EUm of MT in Job, xii, 17, which the Vulgate renders by "angels", becomes "wild beasts" in the Septuagint version. The early ideas as to the jxirsonality of the various angelic appearances are, as we have seen, remarkably vague. .t first the angels are regarded in quite an imper- sonal way (Gen., xvi, 7). They are God's vice- gerents and are often identified with the Author of their message (Gen., xlviii, 1.5-16). But while we read of "the Angels of God' meeting Jacob (Gen., xx.xii, 1) we at other times read of one who is termed "the . gel of God "par cicrllence, e. g. Gen., xxxi, 1 1. It is true that, owing to the Hebrew idiom, this may mean no more than "an angel of God", and the Septuagint renders it with or without the article at will; yet tlie three visitors at Mambre seem to have teen of different ranks, though St. Paul (Heb., xiii, 2) regarded them all as equally angels; as the story in Gen., xiii. develo|)s, the speaker is always "the Lord". Thus in the account of the Angel of the Lord who visited Gideon (Judges, vi), the isitor is alternately sjioken of as "the Angel of the Lord" and as "the Lord". Similarly, in Judges, xiii, the Angel of the Lord appears, and l>oth .lanue anu Ins wife exclaim: " We shall certainly die because we have seen God." This want of clearness is particularly apparent in the various accounts of the Angel of the Exodus. In Judges, vi, just now referred to, the Septuagint is very careful to render the Hebrew "Lord" by "the Angel of the Lord"; but in the story of the Exodus it is the Lord who goes Ix-fore them in the pillar of a cloud (Exod., xiii, 21), and the Septuagint makes no change (cf. also Nimi., xiv, 14, and Xeh., ix, 7-'20). Vet in Exod., xiv, 19, their guide is termed "the . gcl of God". When we turn to Exod., xxxiii, where God is angry with His jx-ople for worshipping the golden calf, it is hard not to feel that it is God HiiiLself who has hitherto been their guide, but who now refuses to accompany them any longer. God offers an angel instead, but at Moses's petition He sjij-s (14), ".My face shall go Ixjfore thee", which the Scptiuigint resicLs by oPtos. though the following verse shows that this rendering is clearly impossible, for .Moses objects: "If Thou Thy- self dost not go before us, bring us not out of this place." But what does God mean by "my face"?
Page:Catholic Encyclopedia, volume 1.djvu/539
This page needs to be proofread.