I’m trying to get back into writing my blog posts and I thought this was a fun place to continue. Because let’s face it, it is always fun to respond to the ill-conceived and poorly thought out nonsense of Trinitarians. So while of late, I have been incredibly busy writing my book which has been focusing Jesus’ brother, James *waits while people frantically Google “Did Jesus have a brother?!?!”* and so I just wanted a nice, fun topic which deals with one of the many problems with the Trinitarian argument about Jesus being the Angel of the Lord, just to ease me back in.
Now, I have already done a post about this called, Jesus IS NOT the Angel of the LORD which deals with the heavy lifting of the argument. This deals with a number of issues that SJ Thomason brings up in her post Clues that Jesus is the Angel of the LORD of the Old Testament. I would recommend you read her blog post and then mine before you read this, because it will give you a feel for the baggage and unwarranted and completely vapid assumptions that Christians bring to the Jewish Bible to try and make their interpretation seem viable. This includes classic issues like SJ claiming that “[t]he three persons of God can be found in the rituals surrounding the Ark of the Covenant” in her post Is the Holy Trinity Found in the Old Testament? When surely anyone with any knowledge of the Jewish Bible (or just half a brain cell) would know that there are in fact FOUR items found in the Tabernacle. In case you don’t believe me, check out either: here or preferably, The Amateur Exegete’s post Evangelical Eisegesis: SJ Thomason, the Tabernacle, and the Trinity in the Old Testament. But anyway, the point today is I want to try and show once and for all why Christians should stop trying to argue that Jesus is the Angel of the Lord.
The main issue I have with the argument, aside from the obvious; that this not only completely bastardises the Jewish Bible, contradicts literally dozens of passages in the Bible which talk about God being one, alone and singular (for example, Exodus 20:2-3, Numbers 23:19, Deuteronomy 4:11-12, Deuteronomy 4:35, Deuteronomy 4:39, Deuteronomy 6:4, Deuteronomy 6:14, Deuteronomy 32:39, I Samuel 2:2, I Samuel 15:29, I Kings 8:27, I Kings 8:60, II Kings 19:19, Isaiah 40:18, Isaiah 40:25, Isaiah 42:8, Isaiah 43:10-11, Isaiah 44:6-8, Isaiah 44:24, Isaiah 45:5-6, Isaiah 45:18-19, Isaiah 45:21-22, Isaiah 46:5, Isaiah 46:9, Isaiah 48:11, Hosea 13:4, Joel 2:27, Malachi 2:10, Psalm 73:25, Psalm 81:8-9, Psalm 146:3, Nehemiah 9:6 and I Chronicles 17:20) and clearly is not consistent with one of the primary expressions of Jewish faith, recited twice daily in prayer, is the Shema, which begins “Hear, Israel: the LORD is our God, the LORD is one” (Deuteronomy 6:4). But the absolutely main issue with their argument, is that to claim Jesus is the Angel of the Lord is not even consistent with what the New Testament reports.
As I mentioned before, it seems really strange to me how Christians don’t seem to be able to wrap their pretty little heads around this, when the theme of an Angel of the Lord acting on behalf of God, but is not God themselves appears in the New Testament itself! The New Testament reports several instances where an agent of God is referred to as “God” or “the LORD” when the agent (usually an angel) only speaks and acts like God (e.g. Acts 5:19; 8:26; 12:7 and 23) but of course is not God. And it is not as though these are tucked away somewhere near the back, but perhaps the most obvious example of this appears in literally the first pages of the New Testament (in case you don’t believe me, see Matthew 1:20, 2:13 and 2:19). For example, in the first chapter of the first Gospel in the New Testament (Matthew – and you can’t get any closer to the start of the New Testament than that!) it reports that Mary discovered she was pregnant before she and Joseph were married. However, an an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and told him the child was God’s and this includes that:
“When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife.” (Matthew 1:24)
Now in response to this, the Christian may argue that this happened in a dream, so it doesn’t count. So let’s say, fine, that doesn’t count. But not only this, but an Angel of the Lord appears at the very end in the climax of the book of Matthew; during the resurrection. Now, while I don’t understand why people claim to be Christian without reading the whole Bible, but surely someone claiming to be a Christian would have read (and read carefully) the resurrection. But clearly not! Because if SJ had read the whole of the Gospel of Matthew, she would have seen, not only does an Angel of the Lord appear at the very beginning but also appears at the very end. In chapter 28 of the Gospel of Matthew it reports:
After the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb. There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. (Matthew 28:1-2)
So, if we are to assume that Jesus is the Angel of the Lord, we are therefore to assume that the Angel of the Lord-Jesus came from heaven to roll back the stone, to reveal that the buried-Jesus was not in the tomb. But not only that, but later on:
The angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here” (Matthew 28:5-6a)
So the Angel of the Lord-Jesus turns around to the women there and says that they should not be looking here for the buried-Jesus, because he has risen. But this is also the Angel of the Lord-Jesus… who is there… but the buried-Jesus, who is also the Angel of the Lord-Jesus is not there… but… Yeah, you see the problem?
Basically, not only is there a problem in reading the Trinity into the Jewish Bible and there are problems with reading it into the New Testament as well, but these are child’s play compared to trying to argue that Jesus is the Angel of the Lord. So I’m begging you… Christians… DON’T TRY AND ARGUE JESUS IS THE ANGEL OF THE LORD. It just doesn’t work on any level. Cheers!