Monday, March 3, 2008
Is Jesus The Angel of The Lord?
Pre-incarnation Appearances of Christ
“The Angel of the Lord”
Jesus appeared to men in the Old Testament on several different occasions. He appeared to Abraham, Sarah, and Hagar and he was called The Angel of the Lord.
- He could speak (Gen. 16:7,8)
- He could be seen (Gen. 16:13)
- He could eat (Gen. 18:1,8)
- He could see (Gen. 18:16)
- He was limited in time (Gen. 32:26)
- He made promises only God could fulfill (Gen. 16:8)
- He kept men from evil (Gen. 48:16)
- He was worshipped (Exodus 3:1-5) *note regular angels are not to be worshipped!
- The Angel of the Lord is not the Father, but the Father sent him.
- He declared Himself to be God (Gen.31: 11-13) Jacob also called him God, by declaring the place he met the Angel of The Lord “Peniel”, The place I saw God.
- 13 I am the God of Bethel, where thou anointedst the pillar, and where thou vowedst a vow unto me: now arise, get thee out from this land, and return unto the land of thy kindred.
- 14 And Rachel and Leah answered and said unto him, Is there yet any portion or inheritance for us in our father's house?
30 And Jacob called the name of the place Peniel: for I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved.
31 And as he passed over Penuel the sun rose upon him, and he halted upon his thigh.
32 Therefore the children of Israel eat not of the sinew which shrank, which is upon the hollow of the thigh, unto this day: because he touched the hollow of Jacob's thigh in the sinew that shrank. (Gen.32)
- He appeared to Joshua as “The Captain of the Lords Army”, He commanded Joshua to take off His shoes and worship Him. (Remember Moses and the burning bush)
14 And he said, Nay; but as captain of the host of the LORD am I now come. And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and did worship, and said unto him, What saith my lord unto his servant?
15 And the captain of the LORD'S host said unto Joshua, Loose thy shoe from off thy foot; for the place whereon thou standest is holy. And Joshua did so.(Joshua 5)
Something we must realize about God, he appeared in many different forms: Moses saw Him as a burning bush / Joshua as a mighty warrior / Isaiah saw Him high and lifted up with a train of glory that filled the temple / Ezekiel saw Him as a wheel in the middle of a wheel. Why am I saying this? We have a tendency to put God in a box called “perception”. God can and has appeared in many different ways, why? I really believe God is unique to the individual, my experience with God might be different than yours. The 3 Hebrew boys were in the fiery furnace with a being that the King said, “He looks like the Son of God!”. Even though the Lord Jesus put on flesh by being born through the Virgin Mary, I believe that there has always been a Father/Son relationship in the throneroom of heaven (I John 5:7 KJV/NKJV/Amp.) Hebrews 13:8 also indicates this fact as well, “Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, and today, and forever.”
Romans 8:3 tells us, “For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son, in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh.” It says God sent HIS SON! I believe The Word (Jesus) always had a father and son relationship, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God, and the Word became flesh. The triunity of God has always existed.
The fact that Jesus is called the Only Begotten Son, is a major stumbling block for the Jehovah’s Witnesses. This is their excuse to believe Jesus is a created being. This term does not speak of His origin, but his unique position as the Son of God. Jesus didn’t materialize for the first time in a manger. He always existed (John 1:1). Jesus on many occasions while speaking to his disciples would speak of His pre-existence. He told them He prepared a place for them, a place He had been before. He spoke of His Kingdom and the relationship he had with the Father. His title “First Born” speaks of His pre-eminence and the fact that all things were created by Him.
(Romans 8:29; Col. 1:15; John 1:3; and Phil.2: 6)