The Truth About Angels

Chapter 17—Angels From Christ's Resurrection Until His Ascension

The Morning of Christ's Resurrection

The disciples rested on the Sabbath, sorrowing for the death of their Lord, while Jesus, the King of glory, lay in the tomb. As night drew on, soldiers were stationed to guard the Saviour's resting place, while angels, unseen, hovered above the sacred spot.—Early Writings, 181. TA 207.1

The night of the first day of the week had worn slowly away. The darkest hour, just before daybreak, had come. Christ was still a prisoner in His narrow tomb. The great stone was in its place; the Roman seal was unbroken; the Roman guards were keeping their watch. And there were unseen watchers. Hosts of evil angels were gathered about the place. Had it been possible, the prince of darkness with his apostate army would have kept forever sealed the tomb that held the Son of God. But a heavenly host surrounded the sepulcher. Angels that excel in strength were guarding the tomb, and waiting to welcome the Prince of life.—The Desire of Ages, 779. TA 207.2

While it was yet dark, the watching angels knew that the time for the release of God's dear Son, their beloved Commander, had nearly come. As they were waiting with the deepest emotion the hour of His triumph, a mighty angel came flying swiftly from heaven.—Early Writings, 181. TA 208.1

The mightiest angel from heaven, he who held the position from which Satan fell, received his commission from the Father, and clothed with the panoply of heaven, he parted the darkness from his track. His face was like the lightning, and his garments white as snow.—The S.D.A. Bible Commentary 5:1110. TA 208.2

One of the angelic host who had witnessed the scene of Jesus’ humiliation, and was watching His sacred resting place, joined the angel from heaven, and together they came down to the sepulcher. The earth shook and trembled as they approached, and there was a mighty earthquake.—Spiritual Gifts 1:66. TA 208.3

The face they [the Roman soldiers] look upon is not the face of mortal warrior; it is the face of the mightiest of the Lord's host. This messenger is he who fills the position from which Satan fell. It was he who on the hills of Bethlehem proclaimed Christ's birth. The earth trembles at his approach, the hosts of darkness flee.—The Desire of Ages, 779, 780. TA 208.4

The angel approached the grave, rolled away the stone as though it had been a pebble, and sat upon it. The light of heaven encircled the tomb, and the whole heaven was lighted by the glory of the angels.—The S.D.A. Bible Commentary 5:1110. TA 208.5

The angelic commander laid hold of the great stone which had required many strong men to place it in position, rolled it away, and took his seat upon it, while his companion entered the sepulcher and unwound the wrappings from the face and head of Jesus. TA 209.1

Then the mighty angel, with a voice that caused the earth to quake, was heard: Jesus, thou Son of God, thy Father calls thee! Then He who had earned the power to conquer death and the grave came forth, with the tread of a conqueror, from the sepulcher, amid the reeling of the earth, the flashing of lightning, and the roaring of thunder.—The Spirit of Prophecy 3:192. TA 209.2

He who said, “I lay down my life, that I might take it again,” came forth from the grave to life that was in Himself. Humanity died; divinity did not die. In His divinity, Christ possessed the power to break the bonds of death.—The Youth's Instructor, August 4, 1898. TA 209.3

Christ in His Godhead shone forth as He burst from the tomb, and rose triumphant over death and the grave.—The Signs of the Times, May 30, 1895. TA 209.4

The Roman guard ... were enabled to endure the sight, for they had a message to bear as witnesses of the resurrection of Christ.—The S.D.A. Bible Commentary 5:1110. TA 209.5

Terrible fear seized the guard. Where now was their power to keep the body of Jesus? They did not think of their duty, or of the disciples stealing Him away. They were amazed and affrighted, as the exceeding bright light of the angels shone all around brighter than the sun. The Roman guard saw the angels, and fell as dead men to the ground.—Spiritual Gifts 1:66. TA 209.6

In solemn awe the angelic host gazed upon the scene. And as Jesus walked forth from the sepulcher in majesty, those shining angels prostrated themselves to the ground and worshiped Him; then hailed Him with songs of victory and triumph.—Spiritual Gifts 1:66, 67. TA 210.1

The soldiers ... heard the inhabitants of heaven singing with great joy and triumph: Thou hast vanquished Satan and the powers of darkness! Thou hast swallowed up death in victory! “And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ; for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, who accused them before our God day and night.”—The Spirit of Prophecy 3:194. TA 210.2

As the angelic host passed back to heaven, and the light and glory passed away, [the Roman guard] raised themselves to see if it were safe for them to look around. They were filled with amazement as they saw that the great stone was rolled from the door of the sepulcher, and Jesus was risen.—Spiritual Gifts 1:68. TA 210.3

Satan did not now triumph. His angels had fled before the bright, penetrating light of the heavenly angels. They bitterly complained to their king, that their prey had been taken violently from them, and that He whom they so much hated had risen from the dead.—Spiritual Gifts 1:67. TA 210.4