28 And after God had appointed that these things should come unto man, behold, then he saw that it was expedient that man should know concerning the things whereof he had appointed unto them;
29 Therefore he sent angels to converse with them, who caused men to behold of his glory.
30 And they began from that time forth to call on his name; therefore God conversed with men, and made known unto them the plan of redemption, which had been prepared from the foundation of the world; and this he made known unto them according to their faith and repentance and their holy works.
The word “angel” comes from the Greek word ἄγγελος (ángelos), which means “messenger.” In Old English, the word was aerendgast, which literally means “errand-spirit.”
An important doctrine in the Book of Mormon is that God sends angels to teach mortal men and women. Those messages prompt us collectively to seek greater spiritual knowledge, through faith and repentance.
- The Bible Dictionary talks about four different types of heavenly messengers:
- unembodied spirits, who have not yet been born
- disembodied spirits, who have died but have not yet been resurrected
- resurrected persons, who have died and who now have a glorified body of flesh and bone,
- translated persons, who never died, but whose bodies have become glorified and immortal
- Dallin H. Oaks taught that angels can minister to us without being seen:
Angelic messages can be delivered by a voice or merely by thoughts or feelings communicated to the mind…. Most angelic communications are felt or heard rather than seen (“The Aaronic Priesthood and the Sacrament,” General Conference, October 1988).
- Jeffrey R. Holland taught that the word angel can also refer to mortal messengers:
Not all angels are from the other side of the veil. Some of them we walk with and talk with—here, now, every day. Some of them reside in our own neighborhoods. Some of them gave birth to us, and in my case, one of them consented to marry me. Indeed heaven never seems closer than when we see the love of God manifested in the kindness and devotion of people so good and so pure that angelic is the only word that comes to mind (“The Ministry of Angels,” General Conference, October 2008).
I’m grateful that Heavenly Father loves us and sends messengers to teach us. Today, I will pay attention to the messages He wants to deliver to me, and I will act upon the messages I receive from Him.