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Jacob Wrestling with the Angel, by Gustave Doré in 1855

The Angelic Court

The 9 types of angels in heaven are Dominions, Cherubim, Seraphim, Principalities, Thrones, Archangels, Virtues, and Powers. The Protestant Bible provides names for five angels in heaven, “Michael the archangel” (Jude 1:9), the angel Gabriel, who is called “the man Gabriel” in Daniel 9:21, which are considered part of the standard New Testament canon and Old Testament canon respectively, as well as Raphael, who is mentioned in Tobit 12:15. Traditionally, seven Angels were considered to be of special significance, who stand before the Throne of God. Within the hierarchy of the angels, at the highest level, St. Michael is a princely seraph, an angel of supreme power and the leader of God’s army.

The angelic court consists of nine orders of angels (three hierarchies each of three orders). Since the devils were angels who had rebelled and fallen, they maintain their rank as ex-angels. Fallen angels are also called evil spirits, unclean spirits, or more simply demons. In the Greek world the word ‘daimon’ was a positive word referring to supernatural creatures midway between gods and human beings.

First Hierarchy

The Wounded Angel, Hugo Simberg, 1903, voted Finland's "national painting" in 2006
The Wounded Angel, Hugo Simberg, 1903, voted Finland’s “national painting” in 2006. The four most often depicted in art are: Gabriel, the messenger of God who brought the announcement of Christ’s birth to the Virgin Mary; Michael, the dispenser of justice; Raphael, the healer and protector of travellers; and Uriel, the angel of prophecy and wisdom.
  • Seraphim
  • Cherubim
  • Thrones

Second Hierarchy

  • Dominions
  • Principalities
  • Powers

Third Hierarchy

  • Virtues
  • Archangels
  • Angels

The highest orders are Seraphim, Cherubim, Ophanim. The middle orders are Dominions Virtues Powers. The lowest orders are Principalities Archangels Angels.

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