Who are these secret observers in heaven? Are they angels in the celestial realm?
Origin of the Watchers
The term “watchers” might have first originated from the book of Daniel where King Nebuchadnezzar refers to them three times in the following verses:
“I saw in the visions of my head as I lay in bed, and behold, a watcher, a holy one, came down from heaven.” - Daniel 4:13
“The sentence is by the decree of the watchers, the decision by the word of the holy ones, to the end that the living may know that the most high rules the kingdom of men and gives it to whom he will, and sets over it the lowliest of men.” - Daniel 4:17
“And whereas the king saw a watcher, a holy one, coming down from heaven and saying, 'hew down the tree and destroy it but leave the stump of its roots in the earth.'” - Daniel 4:23
There are other sources, too, that make reference to these mysterious, unseen angels, such as I and II Enoch that tells the tale of a group of corrupt watchers who descend to the earth from the heavens – fallen angels that eventually are imprisoned for their misdeeds. In III Enoch, we read of the watchers who are in the heavens, honorable and helpful beings that are in power similar to the descriptions found within Daniel. Another account of the watchers can also be found within the Testament of Amran. In this Qumran text, we learn of angels that are both good and bad, both having power over mankind.
Angels Are Watchers
In ancient texts that reference watchers we can deduce that they are equated with angelic beings, entities that are “powers,” unseen forces who interact with humanity. When we understand that biblical references to angels typically refer to enlightened humans in spirit, we become aware that there is a higher intercommunication taking place between people in-body and those unseen.
It is, therefore, safe to assume that we are all being watched by forces typically imperceptible. Such an idea is also a concept found in chapter 12 of the Bible book of Hebrews (among other inferences - see Why Do Angels Watch Us):
“...we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses...”
This idea seems to align nicely with reported angel sightings and higher spirit communications that are sometimes perceived.
Influenced by Angels?
We suspect that influences from the invisible are a common occurrence for all people, something of which we might not be fully aware. Could our moods, our yens, and even our actions be partially influenced by the watchers, people who are directing our lives to some degree? This is, perhaps, startling to consider but think about it: the term “angel” means “messenger.” A messenger is someone who shares a word, an idea, a thought to another person. To do so, is to influence that soul: to speak is to transform or alter, affirm or tear down, protect or ruin, comfort or terrorize.
The Watchers: Powers That Be?
We would like to think that all angels are enlightened, good will ambassadors - and, perhaps, that is the case. But we can't help but wonder about the word angel. In religious texts, could the term angel just be symbolic for anyone who might speak a message to another, acting as a messenger? (Angels translates to "messenger.") If this were the case, then, maybe, the idea that the disposition of angels can either be elevated (call it good) or fallen (call it bad) makes more sense (such as the tales found in the books of Enoch suggest) when applied to humanity as a whole. In this context, if it were true, then the watchers could theoretically be anyone in spirit who is influencing another: enlightened spirits and earthbound spirits (ghosts), for example, speaking to those of us who live on earth. This would give real meaning to another name often used to describe angels (and the watchers): the Powers.
Do angels have a bigger voice in our lives than we know? Are they people who whisper in our ears while we remain unaware of their presence? This, for now, is but conjecture – something to consider and explore further.
More Food for Thought
Consider this idea: Try viewing biblical stories as just elaborate allegories that reveal what takes place within the hearts, minds, and lives of people. Can you find greater meaning within the parables and metaphors that may teach you something about yourself?