Belief in the existence of angels is an article of Islamic faith. The non-believers considered angels to be deities, and Allah’s daughters. This article of faith purifies the belief in the unity of Allah.
The Holy Prophet PBUH said that angels have no share in Allah’s Divinity. To worship them and to ask for their help is degrading and debasing for man. On the very first day of Adam s creation, Allah told the angels to prostrate before Adam and granted him greater knowledge than they possessed.
Allah conveyed His revelations to prophets including Hazrat Muhammad PBUH through an angel, Hazrat Jibrael. In the Holy Quran, angels are spoken of as messengers. The Quran says:
“He doth send down His angels with inspiration of His command to such of His servants as He pleaseth..”(16:2)
Because of the importance of angels as messengers of Divine revelation to prophets, belief in them is a fundamental article of faith in Islam.
Angels act as Allah’s agents and serve Him in many ways. They are created of light and unlike jinn and men have not been endowed with a free will. They are absolutely obedient to Allah’s commands and are engaged in worship and service to Him. They are sent to protect men, to administer Allah’s punishments, to carry His messages and to perform various other functions.
Angels are heavenly beings not visible to ordinary mortals and belong to the category of the unseen, unless they appear in human form. Angels brought messages from Allah to Hazrat Zakaria and to Hazrat Maryam before whom they appeared in human form. Angels also appeared in human form before Hazrat Ibrahim to give him the glad tidings of the birth of a son. Hazrat Lut was also warned by angels in human form of the impending doom of his wicked people and told to leave the town that was going to be destroyed.
Angels have been given the necessary qualities and powers to carry out their duties by Allah. They are not His daughters nor are they objects of worship.
They have no knowledge except what Allah has taught them; they obey Allah and act on His commands. They prostrated before Adam when Allah commanded them to do so. Angels glorify and praise Allah. They never get tired. They do not need Sleep, nor do they require the things needed by human beings.
Angels have various functions and duties. They act as Allah’s messengers but do not descend except by Allah’s command. They strengthen the hearts of the righteous believers and are their protectors. At the Battle of Badr, they helped and strengthened the hearts of the believers and put terror into the hearts of the unbelievers. They implore forgiveness for the believers but they can offer no intercession for them. They send blessings on the Holy Prophet PBUH and the believers.
Angels are the guardians of Hell-fire. They will welcome in Heaven all those who obey Allah’s commands and will throw the wrong doers into Hell.
The name of the angel incharge of Paradise is Rizwan while Malik rules over Hell.
Angels record man’s words and deeds. Two angels who record all his deeds upto the moment of his death attend each human. This record will be presented to him on the Day of Judgment. They are called the ‘respected recorders. The Quran says:
“But verily, over you (are appointed angels) to protect you – kind and honourable, writing down (your deeds).” (82:10-11)
The two angels, called Munkar and Nakir question the dead in their graves.
There are many angels, the prominent among them are:
1) Hazrat Jibrael: He is the chief among the angels. He is said to have revealed the Quran to the Holy Prophet PBUH and also brought revelations to other prophets before him. He is also the messenger through whom Allah speaks to His prophets.
2) Hazrat Izrael, also called the angel of death is responsible for taking our souls upon death.
3) Hazrat Israfil who will blow the trumpet at the time of the end of the world, that is, on the Day of Judgement.