As Western Christians celebrate the church festival of St. Michael and All Angels (also known as Michaelmas) during this season, it is fitting to explore the topics of interest regarding angels that occupied the thoughts of the Reformers—namely, their existence and how they intervene on God’s behalf in the lives of Christians—and examine what the Church actually confesses concerning these creatures as taught from Holy Scripture.
The events of October 31st 1517, the day that Luther nailed his Ninety-Five Theses to the church door in Wittenberg, were not set in motion by a man’s ambitious vision to revolutionize the spirituality of the west. Nor were they set in motion by Luther’s iconoclastic vainglory that sought to topple the ancient powers of tradition and the papacy. Rather, Luther swung his hammer as a pastor. He cared for the eternal welfare of his flock.