'Angels' in Greek mean 'Messengers'. In Bible, heavenly angels are mentioned as messengers of god. Christmas angels are perhaps the most popular form of angels that are used in our celebrations. Angels are believed to be immortal, who live in Heaven, and act as intermediaries between God and Humankind. Traditionally, pictures and poems on angels portray them having human bodies with wings sprouting from their backs. 'Wings' are said to symbolize Innocence, Virtue, Purity, Peace and Love, which place them above Humans though they are still under God. It was the Hebrew Bible or the Old Testament of Christianity, which first mentions that angels had a human body and angel wings and could fly.
According to the New Testament, when people are sorry for their sins,
angels rejoice. In Bible, nine ranks of angels are mentioned with
Seraphim and Cherubim angels on top. Angels are headed by a chief angel
known as an Archangel whose name is Saint Michael. We all have our
guardian angels or angel guardians who protect us, look after us and
comfort us in times of distress. It was in 1100 to 1200 AD when
Christian doctrine about angels evolved rapidly, as in the teachings of
Saint Thomas Aquinas. Saint Thomas believed that angels fill the gap
between God and mankind; they are countless and immortal. According to
Saint Thomas, angels have perfect knowledge except things that can
depend on human choice and things that only God knows.
They were quite instrumental in birth of Jesus Christ and hence, play
an important role in Christmas celebration and festivities. Angels were
the ones that brought us the news of the birth of the Christ child.
Gabriel, the heavenly Christmas angel brought the divine news to Mary
and revealed that she was chosen to bear God's son. Another angel
informed Joseph that he should marry Mary and look after the Christ.
According to a legend, God appointed a small group of tiny angels, who
were just learning their angel ways, to watch over Joseph and Mary on
their journey to Bethlehem. Tiny angels did all they could and tried to
do their best but could not help the couple to find shelter in the inn
in the over-crowded town. Finally, they had to make do with the inn's
They were so excited that they were to witness the birth of God's Only
Son that flew closer to earth and sang sweetly. The fastest among them
caught sight of the newborn child from stable's roof and instantly
understood their mission was to herald the birth. They were so filled
with joy and mirth that they burst into a glorious thanksgiving song
that reached the heavens and was so melodious that it could be heard all
over the Earth. A Christmas angel appeared to the shepherds near
Bethlehem about the Christ Child's birth too. We still see Christmas
angels singing and playing music in Nativity scenes who look so cute and
benevolent that they catch young one's attention and fascination
Read about the history of Christmas angels, traditional Christmas angel pictures and Gabriel as Christmas angel.