God But Not God: The Angel of the LORD

The most mysterious and enigmatic figure in the Old Testament (OT) is “the angel of the LORD.” It occurs 56 times, and “the angel of God” occurs 10 times. He appeared to Abraham, Hagar, Isaac, Jacob, Manoah and his wife, Moses, Joshua, and many others.

There has never been any consensus in Judaism about the identity of this figure. The three eminent rabbinic Bible commentators in medieval times interpreted it as the “angel” of Exodus 23 and 33, whom God said he would send to guard Israel on its way to the promised land and taking possession of it. Many Jewish scholars have identified this angel as the captain of God’s angelic armies, and some claim he is Michael the archangel.

Church fathers generally interpreted “the angel of the LORD” in the OT as the Logos- Son. Since they also identified this Logos-Son as the preexistent Jesus Christ, they deemed “the angel of the LORD” as substantial OT evidence that Jesus Christ was God.

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Author: Kermit Zarley

Keywords: angel of the lord, Jesus angel, preexistence of Jesus, Christ's preexistence, Preexistence of Christ, Jesus' preexistence, Jesus preexisted, Christ preexisted, Theophany, Michael, Michael the arch angel, Michael the archangel, Christ's pre-existence, Pre-existence of Christ, Jesus' pre-existence, Jesus pre-existed, Christ pre-existed, preexistence, pre-existence, preincarnate, pre-incarnate, preincarnate Jesus, preincarnate Christ, pre-incarnate Jesus, pre-incarnate Christ, Christ preincarnate, Christ pre-incarnate, captain of the lord's host, Jacob wrestled with an angel, Jacob wrestled with God, Jacob wrestling with an angel, Lord's angel, angel of God, angel of Yahweh, God manifestation

Bible reference(s): Genesis 16:7, Genesis 16:9, Genesis 16:10, Genesis 16:11, Gen 16:13, Gen 18, Genesis 22:11, Genesis 22:15, Genesis 31:11, Genesis 32:24, Genesis 48:16, Exodus 3:2-4, Exo 3:6, Exodus 14:19, Exo 19:20, Exodus 23:20-21, Exodus 33:2, Numbers 20:16, Numbers 22:22, Numbers 22:23, Numbers 22:24, Numbers 22:25, Numbers 22:26, Numbers 22:27, Numbers 22:31, Numbers 22:32, Numbers 22:34, Numbers 22:35, Jos 5:14-15, Judges 2:1, Judges 2:4, Judges 5:23, Judges 6:11, Judges 6:12, Judges 6:21, Judges 6:22, Judges 13:3, Judges 13:9, Judges 13:13, Judges 13:15, Judges 13:16, Judges 13:17, Judges 13:18, Judges 13:20, Judges 13:21, 2 Samuel 24:16, 1 Kings 19:7, 2 Kings 1:3, 2 Kings 1:15, 2 Kings 19:35, 1 Chronicles 21:12, 1 Chronicles 21:15, 1 Chronicles 21:16, 1 Chronicles 21:18, 1 Chronicles 21:30, Psalms 34:7, Psalms 35:5, Psalms 35:6, Isaiah 6:1-5, Isaiah 37:36, Isaiah 63:9, Zechariah 1:11, Zechariah 1:12, Zechariah 3:1, Zechariah 3:5, Zechariah 3:6, Zechariah 12:8, Malachi 3:1, Act 7:30, Act 7:35

Source: “Did Jesus Preexist as ‘the Angel of the LORD’?” The Restitution of Jesus Christ, 2008.

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