After promising to send an angel ahead, we get this, ” Beware of him, and obey his voice, provoke him not; for he will not pardon your transgressions: for my name is in him. ” Exodus 23:21 I doubt most people have ever paid much attention to this, I did as an avid reader about angels, even wondered if had made my angel mad, when something went wrong, I knew God sent them to help. Thankfully, that wasn’t the case.
Now, there is a high possibility and even probability with this strong language that this angel is Jesus, look at the phrase, my name is in Him. Yahweh, Jehovah, Adonai, and more. You see, when God walked with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, it was Jesus. Why? Even John 1:1, tells us the answer. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God.
So many times we see Jesus appearing in the Old Testament as the Angel of the Lord. He appeared to such people as Hagar, Sarah, Abraham, Jacob and Manoah and his wife Hazeleponi. And I really need to go through and see how many times it could be Jesus, although sometimes, it can be a literal angel, I am sure He is hidden in many places. This verse is in reference to taking the land of Canaan.
And why hidden? Well, Jesus is a treasure. You have to look for Him. He is in the story of Samson, when He tells Manoah and his wife about the child. She believed Him but her husband had to see for himself and though they would die when he did see him. He even asks His name, and the angel won’t say but says it is secret, which can translate from a Hebrew word as wonderful, and what is one of Jesus’ names in isaiah 9:6? Wonderful. I still sing a children’s song, called Isn’t He Wonderful? And He is, too.
So let’s look at it in context, Israel suffered some consequences. But we know Jesus was not angry at Sarah for laughing and denying it. When He talks to Abraham before the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, He is hoping there will be some righteous people still there.
Jesus is full of mercy and grace, and God is slow to anger but you can do it or that verse would not contain a warning. It was such a high price He paid for us to ignore Him. We are not to grieve ourselves but have His joy, Nehemiah 8:10, and especially not the Spirit. Ephesians 4:30, it really does hurt Him when we neither lister or obey.
And we know Jesus ultimately, came as a child grew and was referred to as the second Adam. He gave His life for us a sacrifice once and for all, the very Son of God dying and paying the redemptive price for us. I’d say we don’t want to anger Him as angel of the Lord or the Lord, Himself, for He and the father are one, and three in one with the Holy Spirit whom He sent to live in the hearts of believers.
I don’t want to make Jesus mad and He has good plans for us, so let’s just thank Him and believe. I believe in angels, and the one who is over all of them, do you?