What are Angels?

April 4, 2008

By Shaykh Muhammad ibn Ibraaheem al-Tuwayjri  

Praise be to Allaah.

Allaah created the angels from light. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “The angels were created from light, the jinn were created from smokeless fire, and Adam was created from that which has been described to you.” (narrated by Muslim, 2996) 

The angels are by nature obedient to Allaah: 

“[they, i.e., angels] disobey not, (from executing) the Commands they receive from Allaah, but do that which they are commanded

[al-Tahreem 66:6 – interpretation of the meaning] 

They are created in such a way that they do not eat or drink. Their food is tasbeeh (glorification of Allaah) and tahleel (saying Laa ilaaha ill-Allaah), as Allaah tells us concerning them (interpretation of the meaning): 

“They (i.e. the angels) glorify His Praises night and day, (and) they never slacken (to do so) [al-Anbiyaa’ 21:20 – interpretation of the meaning] 

The angels bear witness to the Oneness of Allaah, as Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): 

“Allaah bears witness that Laa ilaaha illa Huwa (none has the right to be worshipped but He), and the angels, and those having knowledge (also give this witness); (He always) maintains His creation in justice. Laa ilaaha illa Huwa (none has the right to be worshipped but He), the All-Mighty, the All-Wise”

[Aal ‘Imraan 3:18– interpretation of the meaning] 

Allaah has honoured some of the angels  by choosing them as Messengers, just as He has chosen some of mankind as Messengers: 

“Allaah chooses Messengers from angels and from men”

[al-Hajj 22:75  – interpretation of the meaning] 

When Allaah created Adam and He wanted to honour him, He commanded the angels to prostrate to him: 

“And (remember) when We said to the angels: ‘Prostrate yourselves before Adam.’ And they prostrated except Iblees (Satan), he refused and was proud and was one of the disbelievers (disobedient to Allaah)’”

[al-Baqarah 2:34 – interpretation of the meaning] 

The angels are a mighty creation, and they perform many tasks, and they are divided into many groups, which no one knows except Allaah. Some of them carry the Throne: 

“Those (angels) who bear the Throne (of Allaah) and those around it glorify the praises of their Lord, and believe in Him, and ask forgiveness for those who believe (in the Oneness of Allaah)…”[Ghaafir 40:7 – interpretation of the meaning] 

Among them is the one who brings down the Revelation to the Messengers. He is Jibreel (peace be upon him), who brought the Qur’aan down to Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him): 

“Which the trustworthy Rooh [Jibreel (Gabriel)] has brought down

Upon your heart (O Muhammad) that you may be (one) of the warners”

[al-Shu’araa 26:193 – interpretation of the meaning] 

Among them is Mikaa’eel, who is appointed in charge of the rain and vegetation, and Israafeel who is appointed to blow the Trumpet when the Hour begins. And among them are the recording angels who are appointed to watch over the sons of Adam and their deeds:

 “But verily, over you (are appointed angels in charge of mankind) to watch you,

Kiraaman (Honourable) Kaatibeen —writing down (your deeds),

They know all that you do

[al-Infitaar :10-12 – interpretation of the meaning] 

Among them are those who are entrusted with the task of writing down all deeds, whether good or evil: 

“(Remember) that the two receivers (recording angels) receive (each human being), one sitting on the right and one on the left (to note his or her actions)

Not a word does he (or she) utter but there is a watcher by him ready (to record it)

[Qaaf 50:17-18 – interpretation of the meaning] 

Among them are those who are entrusted with the task of seizing the souls of the believers:

 “Those whose lives the angels take while they are in a pious state (i.e. pure from all evil, and worshipping none but Allaah Alone) saying (to them): Salaamun ‘Alaykum (peace be on you) enter you Paradise, because of that (the good) which you used to do (in the world)”

[al-Nahl 16:32 – interpretation of the meaning] 

And among them are those who are entrusted with the task of seizing the souls of the disbelievers: 

“And if you could see when the angels take away the souls of those who disbelieve (at death); they smite their faces and their backs, (saying): ‘Taste the punishment of the blazing Fire’”

[al-Anfaal 8:50 – interpretation of the meaning] 

Among them are the gatekeepers of Paradise and the servants of the people of Paradise: 

“And angels shall enter unto them from every gate (saying):

Salaamun ‘Alaykum (peace be upon you) for you persevered in patience! Excellent indeed is the final home!”

[al-Ra’d 13:23-24 – interpretation of the meaning] 

And among them are the gatekeepers of Hell: 

“O you who believe! Ward off yourselves and your families against a Fire (Hell) whose fuel is men and stones, over which are (appointed) angels stern (and) severe”

[al-Tahreem 66:6 – interpretation of the meaning] 

Among them are some who strive in jihaad with the believers: 

“(Remember) when your Lord revealed to the angels, ‘Verily, I am with you, so keep firm those who have believed. I will cast terror into the hearts of those who have disbelieved, so strike them over the necks, and smite over all their fingers and toes’”

[al-Anfaal 8:12 – interpretation of the meaning] 

On Laylat al-Qadr in the month of Ramadaan, the angels come down to witness goodness with the Muslims, as Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): 

“The Night of Al-Qadr (Decree) is better than a thousand months (i.e. worshipping Allaah in that night is better than worshipping Him a thousand months, i.e. 83 years and 4 months).

Therein descend the angels and the Rooh [Jibreel (Gabriel)] by Allaah’s Permission with all Decrees”

[al-Qadr 97:3-4] 

The angels do not enter a house in which there is a statue, picture (image) or a dog. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “The angels do not enter a house in which there is a dog or an image.” (Narrated by Muslim, 2106). 

Belief in the angels is one of the pillars of faith, and whoever denies it is a kaafir: 

“and whosoever disbelieves in Allaah, His Angels, His Books, His Messengers, and the Last Day, then indeed he has strayed far away[al-Nisaa’ 4:136 – interpretation of the meaning] 

(Source: www.islamqa.com)

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2 Responses to “What are Angels?”

  1. sarahpb Says:

    Hadrat Mikael is my favorite. Though not his main job, if you’re being followed around by bad jinns you can ask Allah to send Hadrat Mikael and he’ll make them go away. He’ll also answer ghaib knowledge questions. You just keep repeating his name and he shows up. Hadrat Gibrael is very prim and proper and you wouldn’t dare call him for the heck of it.

    As to
    “They are created in such a way that they do not eat or drink. Their food is tasbeeh (glorification of Allaah)”

    Yes, their worship generates so much spiritual energy it sustains them. Same with good jinns. If a jinn worships it generates enough spiritual energy to sustain the jinn. If he doesn’t worship, he tries to possess people to try to leech energy off the person’s etheric field.

    Well Hadrat Mikael and my amal writing angels do not mind dogs. I haven’t spoken to other angels so I wouldn’t know how they feel. People’s amal writing angels don’t get to go on vacation just because there is a dog around. To say Rasool Allah was against dogs is wrong. Rasool Allah was Rehmat-ul-Alamin. He wouldn’t be unkind towards any of Allah’s creations. In fact Rasool Allah had hunting dogs.

    If people think being mean to any of Allah’s creations including a dog will earn you points on judgement day, they’re seriously mistaken.

    If you think that saying “oh I was mean to dogs because of a hadith” will get you out of trouble on judgement day they’ll say “When 99% of the hadith say to be nice to Allah’s creations, and when 100% of the Quran tells you to be nice to Allah’s creations, why would you decide to follow this one hadith which may not even be said by Rasool Allah?” All we know is that someone told Muslim that they heard Rasool Allah say this. Maybe they forgot or misheard. You think making a dog stay outside the house in the snow and winter and suffer and freeze to death will make Allah happy? Has Allah not given us a brain to think with?

    I know people fear ghaib knowledge but you should at least learn how to hear your angels telepathically so you are not ignoring them (which I think is rude) when they say valaykum asalam back to you after prayers. They’ve been your constant companions, they’ve lived with you since you were a baby.

    Usually our right hand angels get to take long breaks when they are not writing but our left hand angel is overworked and never gets to take a break.

    Anyway in general though I liked this article. Thank you for posting it.

    • einsteinwallah Says:

      “If people think being mean to any of Allah’s creations including a dog will earn you points on judgement day, they’re seriously mistaken.”

      Is a human a creation of Allah? Is a Kafir a creation of Allah? Is a cow a cration of Allah? Is a lamb a creation of Allah? Is a Cabbage a creation of Allah?


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