The holy temple, below and above; Angels: Day 302

angels_augustine_3We make up the Church below, says St. Augustine, and the angels make up thChurch above. But Christ came down to us and took on human form to make us the equals of the angels.

“I bow down toward your holy temple” (Ps. 138:2).

What holy temple? The temple in which we will dwell, where we will worship.

But certainly, God obviously dwells in the angels. Therefore, when our joy is in spiritual things rather than earthly, and it takes up a song to God to sing before the angels, that very assembly of angels is the temple of God. We bow down toward God’s temple.

There is a Church below, and there is also a Church above. The Church below is in all the faithful; the Church above is in all the angels. But the God of angels came down to the Church below, and the angels served him on earth, while he served us. I came, he says, “not to be served but to serve” (Matt. 20:28). And what did he serve us, except what we eat and drink even today?

Since the Lord of angels has served us, then, we should not despair of being equal to the angels. For he who is greater than angels came down to us. The Creator of the angels took on our nature. The Lord of angels died for us. Therefore “I bow down toward your holy temple”—not the temple made with hands, I mean, but the temple that you, Lord, have made for yourself. –St. Augustine, Exposition on Ps. 138, 4


Christ gave us a chance to unite ourselves with the indescribable joys of the angels in Heaven. How much effort do I put into making sure my joy is in spiritual things? Do I consciously examine my desires and pray for help in redirecting them?


Fill my mouth with your praise, Lord, and my lips with joy, so that I may sing of your glory with all the hosts of Heaven.

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