Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Question

 

Gramps,

What do we know about the form of angels?  Cherubims are described in some detail in the scriptures as having multiple wings.   What have the prophets said on the form of these cherubims?  Is their form symbolic or literal?  When Moroni appeared to Joseph Smith, no description mentions Moroni as having wings.

Steven

 

Answer

 

Dear Steven,

There is much about this topic that we don’t know, but there have been some interesting things revealed to us.  Perhaps my answer will create more questions than it answers, but here is what I can tell you.
‘The word cherubim usually refers to guardians of sacred things. While the exact meaning of the word is not known, most scholars agree that these cherubim represented “redeemed and glorified manhood” or “glorified saints and angels” (Wilson, Old Testament Word Studies, s.v. “cherubim,” p. 75). Since Latter-day Saints do not believe that angels have wings, as they are often shown in religious art, the commandment to form wings on the cherubim may raise some questions. Another revelation indicates, however, that wings symbolically represent the power to move and to act (see D&C 77:4). Between these cherubim on the mercy seat, God told Moses, He would meet with him and commune with him. Latter-day revelations state that angels stand as sentinels guarding the presence of God (see D&C 132:19).’
“Though little has been revealed about such things, the Restoration does confirm and expand on the basic idea that angels function within a structure or order of heaven. The Lord even revealed to the Prophet Joseph Smith that the archangel Michael is Adam and stands at the head of a heavenly organization (see D&C 27:1178:16107:53–56).”

 

It is also interesting to consider-while we are discussing angels- that in D&C 13, we are told that holders of the Aaronic Priesthood are given “the keys to the ministering of angels”. Exactly what this means has long been discussed, but one possibility is that it means that those who hold the Aaronic Priesthood have the keys of acting as ministering angels. That is, they are authorized to be representatives of God in performing service to others, just as angels are supposed to do.  Note this is just my opinion; the Brethren have not offered an interpretation on the meaning.
As I said, this may create more questions than answers, but it is certainly an interesting topic to study and ponder.

 

Gramps

 

 

Copyright © 2020 Ask Gramps - Q and A about Mormon Doctrine. All Rights Reserved.
This website is not owned by or affiliated with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (sometimes called the Mormon or LDS Church). The views expressed herein do not necessarily represent the position of the Church. The views expressed by individual users are the responsibility of those users and do not necessarily represent the position of the Church. For the official Church websites, please visit churchofjesuschrist.org or comeuntochrist.org.

Pin It on Pinterest