The Angel of Jehovah is not Jehovah himself?

JW's argue: The Holy Scriptures are clear in showing that at times an angel, or angels, represented and spoke for Jehovah—and often in the “first person”. When an angel speaks for Jehovah in the first person (as if the angel were actually God Himself), the angel was neither presumptuous nor blasphemous since Jehovah God Himself dispatched the angel as an agent to act in His name. As Jehovah’s agents, any angel sent by Jehovah was obeying Him in accomplishing what Jehovah sent the angel to do. As Jehovah’s representative, the sent one was authorized to speak for Jehovah, which explains why in so many of the following accounts, an angel is speaking, but the angel speaks in the first person as though it were Jehovah Himself. If Jesus is a sent-one/messenger/angel, this would indicate that Jesus, as the “Logos” in heaven, was a created being, which the Bible clearly teaches he is. (Rev. 3:14; Col. 1:15; Prov. 8:22-30).

Answer to the latter part of the arguement - Christ, a created being? Nowhere in the bible does it teach that Christ is created (See Is Jesus a created being?). And neither does his voluntary subordination to the Father imply He is inferior in nature to the Father. This subordination does not say Father is supreme , but rather Father is greater by position, not by nature.

If Jesus is a sent-one/messenger/angel (Exodus 23:20-21), would that indicate that Jesus was inferior and a created being? In John 14:26, we are told “the Father will send” the Holy Spirit. Does that mean the Holy Spirit is also inferior? On the contrary, JW’s believe that the Spirit is the active force that emanates from the Father and Spirit is far superior to Jesus.)

Quoting the JW argument: When an angel speaks for Jehovah in the first person (as if the angel were actually God Himself), the angel was neither presumptuous nor blasphemous since Jehovah God Himself dispatched the angel as an agent to act in His name.

All messengers (angels) sent out by God were to act in and for God’s name. That doesn’t mean they were to speak like God, but speak for God. Nowhere in the Bible (Old or New Testament) has any angel (messenger) or any prophet claimed Jehovah's words as their very own, but would emphasize that these are the words that Jehovah spoke to them, e.g. "This is what Jehovah has said." The only Person who claimed Jehovah’s words as his very own was Christ, who is also the Angel of Jehovah.

Let us now compare two Angels (messengers) of God. Notice how they act in God’s name:

Gen. 31:11-13 Then the angel of the [true] God said to me in the dream, ‘Jacob!’ to which I said, ‘Here I am.’ 12 And he continued, ‘Raise your eyes, please, and see all the he-goats springing upon the flock are striped, speckled and spotty, for I have seen all that La´ban is doing to you. 13 I am the [true] God of Beth´el, where you anointed a pillar and where you vowed a vow to me. Now get up, go out of this land and return to the land of your birth.’”

Exodus 3:2,4,6 Then Jehovah’s angel appeared to him in a flame of fire in the midst of a thornbush. When Jehovah saw that he turned aside to inspect, God at once called to him out of the midst of the thornbush… And he went on to say: “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob.” Then Moses concealed his face, because he was afraid to look at the [true] God.

Note: In the above instance, Jehovah's messenger claims He is the true God. Check out another messenger (angel):

Luke 1:11-19 To him Jehovah’s angel appeared, standing at the right side of the incense altar. 12 But Zech•a•ri´ah became troubled at the sight, and fear fell upon him. 13 However, the angel said to him: “Have no fear, Zech•a•ri´ah, because your supplication has been favorably heard, and your wife Elizabeth will become mother to a son to you, and you are to call his name John. 14 And you will have joy and great gladness, and many will rejoice over his birth; 15 for he will be great before Jehovah. 18 And Zech•a•ri´ah said to the angel: “How am I to be sure of this? For I am aged and my wife is well along in years.” 19 In reply the angel said to him: “I am Ga´bri•el, who stands near before God, and I was sent forth to speak with you and declare the good news of these things to you.

Did you notice that? This messenger “who stands near before God” says "i was sent” by God. Doesn’t give a hint of being like God nor does he say He is God. The angel simply doesn't speak in the first person as though he is Jehovah because He is not Jehovah. Where as the other messenger boldy claims, He is the true God. Why? Because He truly is the One.

Another very interesting point to note is, in Judges 13, we see Jehovah's angel appears before (Manoah's wife) another barren woman (just like Jehovah's angel appeared to Zechariah’s wife in Luke 1:18). The verse reads "In time Jehovah’s angel appeared to the woman and said to her: “Look, now, you are barren and have borne no child. And you will certainly become pregnant and give birth to a son." Judges 13:3

The story continues and Manoah, the woman's husband is able to see the visitor. So Jehovah's angel repeats the message in his presence as well. At this point, Manoah becomes curious and asks the question: What is your name?

“ Then Ma•no´ah said to Jehovah’s angel: “What is your name, that when your word comes true we shall certainly do you honor?” 18 However, Jehovah’s angel said to him: “Just why should you ask about my name, when it is a wonderful one?” " Judges 13:17-18

Did you see the messenger's response? Messenger name is 'wonderful'? He must be the Mighty God described in Isaiah.

Isaiah 9:6 says "For there has been a child born to us, there has been a son given to us; and the princely rule will come to be upon his shoulder. And his name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace."

The Hebrew word for "wonderful" in Judges 13:18 is the very same Hebrew word for "Wonderful" in isaiah 9:6. The Strong index number is 6382 and it means incomprehensible, beyond our understanding, wonderful.

So the Jehovah’s angel says that his name is wonderful, it is incomprehensible, beyond our understanding. In Isaiah 9:6, we find that Jesus' name is also incomprehensible and beyond our understanding. Jesus and the Angel of the Lord are described in the same way. Now when we look at Luke 1, we see that this angel plainly identifies himself as Gabriel, who stands in the presence of God. His name is not beyond our understanding nor is it incomprehensible. It is Gabriel. In Judges, 13, we saw a very different person who's name is wonderful, who is incomprehensible and beyond our understanding. No wonder Job 11:7 states "Can you find out the deep things of God, Or can you find out to the very limit of the Almighty?"

Note that, all Jehovah’s angels are not the same. The one who's name is wonderful, the one who directly claims he is true, He is God, the Son. How do we know that? He speaks like God. He acts like God. He says He is the true God ( See also: An Angel called Jehovoah) .

We are also told that “no man has seen God at any time” John 1:18. Upon further investigation, we can find it is God the Father that any man has not seen (John 6:46). So God who was seen is none other than God the Son and God the Son in many times appeared as the Angel of Jehovah in the OT.

In Num 12:6-8 we are told when Jehovah speaks with Moses, “the appearance of Jehovah is what he [Moses] beholds”:

Num 12:6-8 And he went on to say: “Hear my words, please. If there came to be a prophet of YOURS for Jehovah, it would be in a vision I would make myself known to him. In a dream I would speak to him. Not so my servant Moses! He is being entrusted with all my house. Mouth to mouth I speak to him, thus showing him, and not by riddles; and the appearance of Jehovah is what he beholds. Why, then, did YOU not fear to speak against my servant, against Moses?”

Jehovah in Num 12:6-8 is not the Father, because no man has seen the Father.

However JW's are quick to argue saying, doesn’t Exodus 33:20 say no man can see God face to face and live? Let's see the verse once again:

Ex 33:20 And he added: “You are not able to see my face, because no man may see me and yet live.”

Why does God say to Moses, “you are not able to see my face”? That is because in Ex 33:18, (2 verses before) Moses asks Jehovah, “Cause me to see, please, your glory” and Jehovah answers “you are not able to see my face [in that glory] because no man may see me [in that glory] and yet live. God was seen, but not in his full glory. God veiled his glory to avoid causing harm to Mose when he appeared. We get an idea about how glorious God was even after he veiled his glory. In 2 Corinthians 3:7 it reads, “so that the sons of Israel could not gaze intently at the face of Moses because of the glory of his face”. God was still very glorious, but that glory was veiled. If not, they would have been consumed. If they (and Moses) has seen his full glory, they would have positively died!

When Jacob recognized that the messengers of God was divine (Jehovah), “Jacob called the name of the place Pe•ni´el, because, to quote him, “I have seen God face to face and yet my soul was delivered” Gen. 32:30. “Ma•no´ah said to his wife: “We shall positively die, because it is God that we have seen.” Jdg. 13:221 . Both Jacob and Manoah was right that they had seen God and that they should die. They didn’t die because Jehovah veiled his GLORY.

In the same manner in Gen. 32:27-30, we find Jacob contending with God and yet he prevailed. Again in this instance, God allowed Jacob to prevail. Nobody could say that it was mere angel and that is why Jacob prevailed. Created angels are powerful beings. Man is made little “lower than” the angels (Heb 2:7). In Matt 28:4 we are told that at Jesus’s tomb, “the watchmen trembled and became as dead men” because of one angel. Jacob could not have wrestled even a mere angel; they are powerful! Therefore we see that Jehovah has a way in dealing with his beloved servants. In certain occasions, He chooses not to exercise his full glory!

The being who appeared to Jacob is none other than Jehovah himself. How do we know? Jehovah himself confirms:

Ex 6:2-3 And God went on to speak to Moses and to say to him: “I am Jehovah. And I used to appear to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob as God Almighty, but as respects my name Jehovah I did not make myself known to them.

The being who appeared to Moses says He is Jehovah. It is Jehovah (not an angel) who says He “used to appear to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob as God Almighty, but as respects” to His name ‘Jehovah’, he “did not make known to them”. Now read Gen 32:27-30:

Gen. 32:27-30 So he said to him: “What is your name?” to which he said: “Jacob.” 28 Then he said: “Your name will no longer be called Jacob but Israel, for you have contended with God and with men so that you at last prevailed.” 29 In turn Jacob inquired and said: “Tell me, please, your name.” However, he said: “Why is it that you inquire for my name?” With that he blessed him there. 30 Hence Jacob called the name of the place Pe•ni´el, because, to quote him, “I have seen God face to face and yet my soul was delivered.”

In Gen 32:29, Jacob inquired “Tell me, please, your name.” However, the messenger said: “Why is it that you inquire for my name?”. Ex 6:2-3 says God Almighty [who also appeared to Jacob] did not make known his name. It was God Almighty who appeared to Jacob for sure!

The Angel of Jehovah is none other than Jehovah himself. He is speaking like Jehovah not because God gave him authority, but because He is God himself. The name Jehovah is the family name of God shared by the heavenly trio: the Father, the Son and the Spirit (Matt 28:19).