Angels were originally in the Jewish theology considered simply as messengers of God, as the name ...., herald or angel, pronounced mal-awk, imports, and the word is thus continually, used in the early Scriptures of the Old Testament. It was only after the captivity that the Jews brought from Babylon their mystical ideas of angels as instruments of creative ministration, such as the angel of fire, of water, of earth, or of air. These doctrines they learned from the Chaldean sages, who had probably derived them from Zoroaster and the Zendavesta. In time these doctrines were borrowed by the Gnostics, and through them they have been introduced into some of the advanced degrees; such, for instance, as the Knight of the Sun, in whose ritual the angels of the four elements play an important part.
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