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Bible Dictionaries

Holman Bible Dictionary

Council, Heavenly

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A meeting of God and His heavenly hosts. The concept of a heavenly council arose as a corollary to Israel's thoughts about the transcendence of God. They conceived of God as exalted above the world. God's dwelling place was in the heavens, not on the earth (Ecclesiastes 5:2 ). One prophet asserted that God sits “upon the circle of the earth” (Isaiah 40:22 ). There Yahweh presided over His heavenly council like some earthly king presiding over an assembly of his subjects.

God's heavenly council was made up of angelic servants often called “sons of God” (Job 1:6 ; Job 2:1 ). Micaiah saw the Lord sitting on His throne with “all the host of heaven” standing by to serve Him (1 Kings 22:19 ). God sent these servants from the council from time to time to do His bidding (Job 1-2 ). Satan, the adversary, was among these “sons of God” in the prologue to Job. In his vision Isaiah entered the council and received a commission to preach to his people (Isaiah 6:1 ). The psalmist gave this insight into God's exalted being: “For who in the skies is comparable to the Lord? Who among the sons of the mighty is like the Lord, a God greatly feared in the council of the holy ones?” (Psalm 89:6-7 NAS). Eliphaz questioned Job's status with God: “Have you listened in the council of God?” ( Job 15:8 ). For Jeremiah the sign of false prophets was that they had not “stood in the counsel of the Lord” (Jeremiah 23:18 ). Had they done so they would have proclaimed God's word to God's people (Jeremiah 23:22 ). The servants of the Lord in good standing are those who obey their Sovereign's will (Psalm 103:21 ; Psalm 148:1-6 ).

Billy K. Smith


Copyright Statement
These dictionary topics are from the Holman Bible Dictionary, published by Broadman & Holman, 1991. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman & Holman.

Bibliography Information
Butler, Trent C. Editor. Entry for 'Council, Heavenly'. Holman Bible Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/hbd/c/council-heavenly.html. 1991.

Lectionary Calendar
Sunday, November 17th, 2019
the Week of Proper 28 / Ordinary 33
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