The Trinitarian Claim
Many Trinitarians claim that the "angel of the LORD" appearances in the Old Testament are the appearance of Yahweh Himself but more specifically, the pre-existent Christ.
Examination of the Claim
1. Yahweh's Messenger is Yahweh?
Trinitarians seem to conveniently forget that the term "angel of the LORD" means "Messenger of Yahweh" or "Yahweh's messenger." The English word "angel" is not a translation of the Hebrew word but simply an anglicization of Latin angelus and Greek aggelos which simply mean "messenger." The Hebrew word is mal'ak. Both the Hebrew and Greek words in question are used to refer to both divine beings and human beings since human beings are messengers for other human beings. John the Baptist was a messenger (aggelos of God (Matthew 11:10; Mark 1:2). We would not therefore conclude that John the Baptist IS God.
We only need to realize that it doesn't make a lot of sense to insist Yahweh's messenger is Yahweh. It is completely nonsensical to suppose Yahweh's messenger is Yahweh. It doesn't make any sense to identify Yahweh as "Yahweh's messenger." Why would anyone use language to identify someone that sounds like they are identifying someone else? Elisha sent a messenger (mal'ak) to Naaman (2 Kings 5:9-10). Would anyone assume Elisha's messenger IS Elisha? It is an absurd proposition.
2. God did not speak to Israel in a Son
The Bible makes it quite clear that communication with God's people in the Son did not occur in the Old Testament and occurs only now "in these last days.
In many and various ways, God spoke to the fathers of old in the prophets but in these last days did speak to us in a Son. Hebrews 1:1-2.
It simply would not make any sense for the Hebrews writer to make the above statement if he had believed in a pre-incarnate Son speaking to the people of Israel.
Analysis of the Evidence
1. Jesus is ruled out. John 14:28; Heb 6:13 (see John 10:25; eph 4:6).
Created: October 19, 2011
Last Updated: October 19, 2011