“Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.” Hebrews 13:2
Have you ever entertained an angel? How about a stranger or someone unknown to you who came on the scene with a special need? Maybe they had a physical, emotional or just a need for affirmation or acknowledgement. Perhaps they just needed a bite to eat or a place to lay their weary head. I know I have a few times, and I am always reminded of the Hebrew’s writer admonition to help all in need lest we also neglect God’s messengers without knowing it.
Who or what is an angel? The biblical definition of an angel is a messenger. A messenger sent for a variety of reasons with a specific purpose. Notice in our text, the entertainment of an angel comes in the form of hospitality. When one shows hospitality to someone sent by God he or she may be hosting an angel. Their purpose in presenting themselves is to give you the opportunity to be their host. Thereby you are doing God’s bidding.
The word “unawares” means it is likely you won’t know who or when this opportunity comes. Angels will also be unrecognizable. They may be disguised as someone you know or a complete stranger. Our response to this text should be, since we don’t who God is sending our way, be hospitable to everyone. Those who appeal and some who are not so appealing. Those who possess great wealth, and those with meager means. If you do not want to miss an opportunity to entertain a heavenly being do not ignore what may be their earthy manifestation. Don’t look for a being with wings or a halo, for that will never come. Look for one whose needs you are capable of meeting or ministering to. If you are one who practices hospitality to all, it is possible, even probable, that you have entertained an angel.
Remember the commandment given by the apostle Paul while writing to the Galatians. “Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith” (Gal 6:10). The lesson learned is: If you would help an angel of God, then by all means help all who are in need, especially the saints of God!