My Question: "the angel of the Lord"

(Casey Moore) #1

Hi everyone,
I’m doing a little research and I’m stuck. I’m trying to understand who “The” angel of the Lord was, vs. when scripture mentions “An” angel of the Lord. Was The angel of the Lord Gabriel?
Just need a little clarification. Thanks friends!

(SeanO) #2

@CSMoore The ‘angel of the Lord’ is generally considered to be a theophany - an appearance of God. Some believe that the angel of the Lord is the preincarnate Christ.

The precise identity of the “angel of the Lord” is not given in the Bible. However, there are many important “clues” to his identity. There are Old and New Testament references to “angels of the Lord,” “ an angel of the Lord,” and “ the angel of the Lord.” It seems when the definite article “the” is used, it is specifying a unique being, separate from the other angels. The angel of the Lord speaks as God, identifies Himself with God, and exercises the responsibilities of God (Genesis 16:7-12; 21:17-18; 22:11-18; Exodus 3:2; Judges 2:1-4; 5:23; 6:11-24; 13:3-22; 2 Samuel 24:16; Zechariah 1:12; 3:1; 12:8). In several of these appearances, those who saw the angel of the Lord feared for their lives because they had “seen the Lord.” Therefore, it is clear that in at least some instances, the angel of the Lord is a theophany, an appearance of God in physical form.

  • The angel of the Lord is repeatedly identified as God.
  • The angel of the Lord performes miraculous signs.
  • People expect to die after having encountered the angel of the Lord face-to-face, but none of them actually do die.
  • The name of the angel of the Lord is “wonderful”.

So, to conclude our discussion, who is the angel of the Lord? As we read all of those accounts and piece together the consilience of clues, it becomes evident that the angel of the Lord is none other than the pre-incarnate Christ Himself.

(Casey Moore) #3

Thank you! That was my hunch as well but then I asked my husband and I second guessed myself. Haha!

(SeanO) #4

@CSMoore Sure thing! Haha, yes, part of the value of bouncing ideas off one another is that we are forced to think deeper and study more :slight_smile: