I recently heard a prophetic word that described an angelic visitation. Of course, I am all for angelic visitations. Both the Old and New Testament offer plenty of examples of angels appearing to people to deliver heavenly messages. But this angel apparently had a creative name. Its name was supposedly “Safe Passage.”
It grieves me that we have to go around this mountain yet again in the body of Christ. Wasn’t the controversy over Emma—the female angel who purportedly started the modern-day prophetic movement—enough to put an end to this sort of nonsense? Apparently not.
Let me be clear: There is no angel named Emma and there is no angel named Safe Passage—and it’s assignment is not to escort you safely into new opportunities or to clear fearsome corners and honor your unsung courage.
However, if you Google the keywords “angel safe passage,” you might see where a misguided prophetic pen could draw such erroneous inspiration. There’s a Safe Passage playing card that’s a prominent “white angel” in a Dungeons & Dragons-style game. In this context, “Safe Passage” is a sorcerer. On the more benign side, “Safe Passage” was the title of a script for a 1997 episode of Touched by an Angel. Either way, there is no God-sent angel named Safe Passage.
It just so happened that when I stumbled upon the so-called revelation of this angel named Safe Passage I was already studying the topic of angels. In fact, I was in the midst of reading Dr. Lester Sumrall’s Angels to Help You for a second time. Sumrall offered abundant Scripture about the reality of angels, the categories of angels—including their names and ranks—what angels do, what angels know, angels and prophecy, what kind of people receive angelic service, and much more.
Angels are real. Angels are mentioned 108 times in the Old Testament and 165 times in the New Testament. Angels are messengers. Angels are innumerable. The Bible mentions three angels by name: Michael, Gabriel and Lucifer. But beyond that, you have to go to religions like Zoroastrianism to find the names of angels.
Zoroastrianism, also called Mazdaism, is a religion based on a self-styled prophet named Zoroaster (also known as Avestan or Zarathustra). Zoroastrianism was once among the largest religions in the world, a political power in pre-Islamic Iran. Mazdaism believers prayed to angels like Ameretat, Asha Vahishta and Vohu Mano for protection.
In modern times, the New Age movement has an A-to-Z list of named angels, some of which are supposedly rooted in Scripture. There’s Abdiel, the professed “Angel of Faith.” At the end of the New Age list, you’ll find Zuriel, the “Angel of Harmony” who has dominion over the sun sign of Libra.
As you can see, false teaching about angels has been circulating the world since before Christ was born and well after He ascended to the right hand of the Father. False teachings about angels was an issue in the early church and it’s an issue in the end-time church. “And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light” (2 Cor. 11:14).
Paul had an apostolic message for those who hyper-focused on angels and their “teachings” at the expense of exalting Christ. Paul was so bold as to say that if he—or an angel from heaven—preached any other gospel than the gospel of Christ he should be accursed (Gal. 1:8). Those are pretty strong words and ones that should be heeded before we preach sermons or pen articles that exalt angels.
Paul also said, “Let no one cheat you of your reward, taking delight in false humility and worship of angels, intruding into those things which he has not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind, and not holding fast to the Head, from whom all the body, nourished and knit together by joints and ligaments, grows with the increase that is from God” (Col. 2:18-19).
Matthew Henry, an 18th century minister whose well-known commentary provides an exhaustive verse-by-verse study of the Bible, gets to the root of such angel exaltation: “They advanced those notions to gratify their own carnal fancy, and were fond of being thought wiser than other people. Pride is at the bottom of a great many errors and corruptions, and even of many evil practices, which have great show and appearance of humility.”
Yes, angels are ministering spirits sent forth to minister to those who will inherit salvation (Heb. 1:14). That’s us! Angels are sent to execute God’s Word. By revelation of the Holy Spirit, David wrote, “Bless the Lord, you His angels, who excel in strength, who do His word, heeding the voice of His word” (Ps. 103:20). Angels stand ready to obey the Word of God and bring it to pass.
Yes, in a way angels may help provide us with safe passage. When we make the Lord our dwelling place, no evil shall befall us nor shall any plague come near our dwelling; for He shall give His angels charge over us, to keep us in all our ways. In their hands they shall bear us up, lest we dash our foot against a stone (Psalm 91:9-12). But there is no angel named Safe Passage, at least none of God’s angels.
One last thought: John mistakenly fell down to worship at the feet of an angel who had shown him the revelations he recorded in the book of Revelation. The angel immediately told him to worship God (Rev. 22:8-9). We don’t know the name of this angel. If it were important, the Holy Spirit would have revealed it. I suppose some in the modern church would name him “Revelation,”—some may even claim “Revelation” is a female—and that would be yet another error.
Let me end with the words of Jesus Himself: “Take heed that no one deceives you … for false christs and false prophets will rise and show signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect” (Mark 13:5; 22). Amen.