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12:7; 13:14; 28: 13. This was the Angel that redeemed Jacob from all evil, whom he represents as identical with the God before whom his fathers had walked, and who had fed him his life long. This is the Angel of God that spake to him in a dream at Padanaram, and who declared himself to be the God of Bethel, to whom Jacob made his vow. Jacob, it appears, enquired for the name of the man with whom he wrestled at Penuel, but his curiosity is not gratified, and in allusion to this, Hosea says, " Jehovah is his memorial," i. e., his name. Jacob called the name of the place the face of God," "for," said he, “I have seen God, face to face, and my life is preserved.” Such visible appearances of God seem to have been so rare that they always excited great astonishment, as there
appears to have been an impression that no one could see Him and live.
5. The next account of the appearance of the Angel Jehovah, was to Moses. “And the Angel of Jehovah appeared unto him in a flame of fire,” &c. This appearance calls himself the God of his father, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; said he had seen the affliction of his people in Egypt, that he had come down to deliver them, and to bring them to a good land, appoints Moses their conductor, &c. Moses gives to this Being the appellation God, and hid his face, for he was afraid to look upon him; and when Moses enquired what name he should give to the children of Israel, this same Angel said, “I AM THAT I AM,” and commanded him to say to the children of Israel, that one, bearing the name “I am,” had sent him unto them.
This, therefore, was the Angel of Jehovah, who pledg
ed himself to conduct the Israelites to the promised land; and that he was no ordinary angel is apparent not only from the names applied to him, but from the fact that God declares that his name is in him. When the Israelites had sinned by making the golden calf, God said he would send an Angel to conduct them, but He himself would not go up with them.
Now the fact that the people regarded such intelligence as “ evil tidings,” and “mourned,” and “stripped themselves of their ornaments," shows that they could not have supposed the Angel of Jehovah, who had previously pledged himself to be their leader, an ordinary Angel ; but when God said, “My presence shall go with thee,” Moses seemed satisfied.
6. This Angel of Jehovah also appeared to Balaam. But it will be seen by the connection, that he who is repeatedly called “ Angel,” is recognized by the prophet as God himself.
7. In Judges, we have an account of the Angel of Jehovah speaking to all the children of Israel, reproving them for their sins; and this Being represents himself as the one who covenanted with their fathers and brought them out of Egypt. We have also an account of an Angel of Jehovah appearing to Gideon, under the oak which was in Ophrah; but Gideon calls him “my Jehovah,” and said that he had seen an Angel of the Lord, face to face, and was grately afraid, till Jehovah comforted him with the promise that he should not die.
8. It would be needless to refer to more of the numerous instances given in the historical parts of the Old
Testament, where God appears to man as the Angel of Jehovah; but in all instances it is apparent that there is a representation of God, which comes within the reach of the human senses, and that the Being called Angel, is identical with the Infinite Jehovah himself. There are numerous other instances in which God, under other names, appears to man. The following texts embrace the idea :“And they saw the God of Israel." 66 Jehovah will come down in the sight of all the people upon Mount Sinai.” “And Jehovah spake to Moses, face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend.” “I saw Jehovah sitting upon a throne." "Woe is me! for I am undone, for mine eyes have seen the King, Jehovah of hosts."
The Old Testament abounds with such declarations; but qur chief object has been to trace the word Angel throughout the Prophets, into the New Testament. Our second proposition is as follows:
II. The expression Angel of Jehovah, is applied to the Messiah of the New Testament.
1. We conceive that the Angel of Jehovah, when he appeared to Manoah, assumes a title which is peculiar to the Messiah.
" And the Angel of Jehovah said, why asketh thou after my name, seeing it is wonderful ?''* The same appellation is unquestionably given to the Messiah, in Isaiah. “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given, and the government shall be upon his shoulders, and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, the mighty God, Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.” That this text
* Hebrew Palee.
refers to the Messiah of the New Testament, no one can doubt.
2. Again, the term is evidently applied to Christ, in Isaiah 42 : 19—“Who is blind as my servant ? or deaf as my Angel that I sent ??? This angel or servant is the same as that mentioned in the first verse. “ Behold my servant whom I uphold, mine elect in whom my soul delighteth." These words are quoted in Matthew, and applied to Christ.
3. Malachi, also refers to the Messiah under this appellation. “Behold I will send my messenger (John the Baptist,) and he shall prepare the way before me, and Jehovah, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come into his temple, even the Angel of the covenant, whom ye delight in; behold, he shall come, saith the Lord of hosts." That the New Testament writers understood this prophecy as referring to John the Baptist, and to the Messiah, is apparent from Mark 1: 2.* " As it is written in the Prophets, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.” “The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.” Now, the third verse is quoted with but little alteration from the Hebrew of Isaiah 40: 3. “The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of Jehovah, make straight in the desert a highway for our God." Mark, after blending these two predictions, goes on to speak of John and Christ, showing clearly that he understood the Angel of Jehovah, of Mala chi, to be identical with the Jehovah, and Our God, of Isaiah, and with the Messiah, whose history he is about to
*See also Matthew, 11:10; Luke, 7: 27; Mark, 1: 3.
record. In the same connection, Isaiah calls him the “glory of Jehovah,” which expression manifestly refers to a visible appearance of God. In Corinthians, Paul says, “ Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed of serpents.” Now, who was this Christ who was tempted in the wilderness ? We learn, by referring to Numbers 21 : 5–9, where we have an account of the people speaking against a being denominated God and Jehovah, who is represented as the leader of the Israelites; and to whom we have already seen, that the appellation, Angel, is constantly applied. For tempting this Being, they were bitten by serpents.
4. We will call attention to but one other passage, (John 1:1, where Jesus Christ is called the Word, and is identified with the God who was in the beginning, and the Maker of all things. Now, as Jesus Christ represented God, as a word represents the mind of him who utters it, there is reason for giving him this appellation. But was this a Jewish form of expression ? Have we any reason to suppose that the readers of John's gospel would have been able to comprehend the import of such an epithet, when applied to the Messiah ? He is evidently arguing to prove the Divinity of our Lord; but if he bases an argument upon a term which the Jews have not been accustomed to apply to their God, nor to the Messiah, he proves nothing to their minds at all. Now, it is a fact, worthy of attention, that in the Chaldee Paraphrase of Onkelog and Jonathan, we have the expression Word of Jehovah,* where
*Mamra Yahovah is a Chaldee expression which stands for the Angel of Jehovah, or Jehovah where any manifestation of the Divine Being is referred to, and it answers to the Greek logos.