7 And of the angels He says: “Who makes His angels spirits And His ministers a flame of fire.”
Verses 7-9 juxtapose two quotations that show two different kinds of status:
(1) the servanthood of angels (v.7) and
(2) the eternal dominion of the Son (vv. 8-9).
This section shows the superiority of the Son because of His regal rule as God. In contrast to the Son, God also speaks about the ministry and mutability of angels.
Verse 7 quotes Psalm 104:4 within a chain of quotations that began in verse 5. This quotation is paired with Deuteronomy 32:43 (LXX). Both reference angels. Hebrews interprets this psalm as reinforcing the proclamation of the Son’s superiority to angels.
7 And [on the other hand] of the angels He says:
Rather than speaking to angels directly, He says something about angels.
The fourth citation is from Psalm 104:4 (LXX). The synoptic gospels quote this psalm in Matthew 13:32, Mark 4:32, and Luke 13:19. This psalm shows the role of angels is to serve the Messiah (He 1:14). They have a subordinate role to Jesus.
“Who makes His angels spirits
Angels are created “spirits.” “Spirits” means wind. Angels are as variable as the wind. They are changeable, not immutable like the Son.
The word “makes” means to create. The Son was not created; He was the Creator (Co 1:16). He created angels; they are finite beings. The Creator is superior to the creature and is infinite.
And His ministers a flame of fire.”
This verse quotes Psalm 45:7-8, which is a royal psalm.
Angels are “ministers.” The word ministers carries the idea of sacred or religious ministry. It was used this way of Old Testament priests. Not only were angels created, but they were the servants of the Son. They ministered under His control.
Angels are mutable in their tasks. Although they are supernatural beings, they serve and worship God. Angels are mutable, but the Son is immutable. Angels constantly change. Angels are transitory like flames of fire. They will pass off the scene at some point.
The title “Son” is too eminent to be applied to angels. Angels are subordinate, not sovereign.
The Son stands above the created order.
The quotation of this verse describes the nature and purpose of angels. They are finite creatures within the created order. The Son stands above the created order because He is the divine instrument of creation, the Creator. He was the Architect of creation.