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Who is the Angel Who Ate Lunch with Abraham?

It's a beautiful thought that the God who has created everything should come down to earth and eat with human beings. But as unbelievable as it sounds to all of us, the great YHVH (Translated as LORD in most English translations), the I AM That I AM, has visited earth in appearance as a man. To the Jewish mind, that cannot be. They remind us of what Moses, under the inspiration of the Spirit of God, said:

19And He said, "I Myself will make all My goodness pass before you, and will proclaim the name of the LORD before you; and I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show compassion on whom I will show compassion." 20But He said, "You cannot see My face, for no man can see Me and live!" 21Then the LORD said, "Behold, there is a place by Me, and you shall stand there on the rock (Exodus 33:19-21).

Yes, if we were to see God in the fullness of His power, His glory would be too much for us, but when we look at several Scriptures in the Old Testament, we see that YHVH did visit in human form. God visited Abram, the one whose name was changed to Abraham. Here's what the Word of God says:

Genesis 12:7—Then YHVH appeared to Abram…

Genesis 15:1—And the word—YHVH came to Abram in a vision…

Genesis 17:1—And YHVH appeared to Abram…

Genesis 18:1—Then YHVH appeared to him at the oaks of Mamre.

The verses above have the word appeared in Hebrew in the passive form of the verb to see. It means that Abraham saw YHVH in human form. This visit by God becomes evident in Genesis 18:1-2. To those not familiar with the English translation, when the word LORD appears in the text, the Hebrew word is YHVH—the creator God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob:

1Now the LORD appeared to him by the oaks of Mamre, while he was sitting at the tent door in the heat of the day. 2When he lifted up his eyes and looked, behold, three men were standing opposite him; and when he saw them, he ran from the tent door to meet them and bowed himself to the earth (Genesis 18:1-2, Emphasis mine).

Christians believe this lunchtime with Abraham to be a pre-incarnate appearance of the Son of God, the One who is YHVH in human form. The text distinctly tells us that He appeared with two others as men. Two angels with Him that day went down to Sodom and brought Lot out of the city while the LORD listened to Abram's intercession. Three times we read that the three people having lunch were called "men" (verses 2, 16, and 22). One of the three was YHVH:

Then the men turned away from there and went toward Sodom, while Abraham was still standing before the LORD (Genesis 18:22).

As soon as He had finished speaking to Abraham, the LORD departed, and Abraham returned to his place (Genesis 18:33).

Many Christian scholars believe this person who appeared to Abraham was Yeshua, Jesus. In the New Testament, the Lord Jesus told the Jews that He had met Abraham. Here’s what He said:

56“Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day, and he saw it and was glad.” 57So the Jews said to Him, “You are not yet fifty years old, and have You seen Abraham?” 58Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was born, I am.” 59Therefore they picked up stones to throw at Him, but Jesus hid Himself and went out of the temple (John 8:56-59).

God has come to us in human form, and His name is: YHVH is salvation, the translation of the name Jesus. Jesus is more than a man; He is God in the flesh. Keith Thomas

This short reflection is taken from the more in-depth study on The Faith of Abraham; click the following link: Abraham's Dinner Guests.


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