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The word מַלְאָךְ (mal'akh) has the root meaning of to send and does not denote the nature of the one sent. The meaning ranges from messenger to envoy

Function or Nature?

Who or what the one sent is cannot be determined from the word מַלְאָךְ because it only describes the function of the sent one. Joshua's spies are called מַּלְאָכִ֖ים in Joshua 6:17, 25 because they were sent. By nature they were human but the word describes their function. The same is true of the מַלְאַ֤ךְ יְהוָה֙. His function was to be sent but, as many texts show his nature is deity. He is from the Lord (יהוה)and yet he is one with the Lord (יהוה).

"Hear Oh Israel, Yahweh is our God, Yahweh is echad!"
The unity of God is one of complexity. God is unseen and yet seen, omnipresent and yet localized. Not man and yet became man.

Not seen...

Exodus 33:20
וַיֹּ֕אמֶר לֹ֥א תוּכַ֖ל לִרְאֹ֣ת אֶת־פָּנָ֑י כִּ֛י לֹֽא־יִרְאַ֥נִי הָאָדָ֖ם וָחָֽי

Yet seen...

Exodus 33:11

וְדִבֶּ֨ר יְהוָ֤ה אֶל־מֹשֶׁה֙ פָּנִ֣ים אֶל־פָּנִ֔ים כַּאֲשֶׁ֛ר יְדַבֵּ֥ר אִ֖ישׁ אֶל־רֵעֵ֑הוּ

Seen by Hagar

Genesis 16:7-8, 9-10, 11-12, 13-14

וַתִּקְרָ֤א שֵׁם־יְהוָה֙ הַדֹּבֵ֣ר אֵלֶ֔יהָ אַתָּ֖ה אֵ֣ל רֳאִ֑י כִּ֣י אָֽמְרָ֗ה הֲגַ֥ם הֲלֹ֛ם רָאִ֖יתִי אַחֲרֵ֥י רֹאִֽי

The Malakh יהוה spoke to Hagar: “Now the Malakh יהוה found [Hagar]  ...the Malakh יהוה said to her, “Return to your mistress...” ...the Malakh יהוה said to her, “I will greatly multiply...” The Malakh יהוה said to her further, “Behold, you are with child... a son..."

Hagar recognised that it was Yahweh speaking to her.
Then she called the name of יהוה who spoke to her, “You are a God who sees”; for she said, “Have I even remained alive here after seeing him?” Therefore the well was called בְּאֵ֥ר לַחַ֖י רֹאִ֑י...”

Seen by Abraham

Genesis 22:11-12, 13-14, 15-16, 17–18
The Malakh יהוה speaks to Abraham:
...the Malakh יהוה called to [Abraham]... He said, “Do not stretch out your hand against the lad, and do nothing to him; for now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your son, your only son, from me.
The Malakh identifies himself as יהוה
...the Malakh יהוה called to Abraham a second time... and said, “By myself I have sworn, declares יהוה, because you ... have not withheld your son, your only son, ...I will greatly bless you... because you have obeyed my voice.

Genesis 18-19

Genesis 18 begins by saying YHWH appeared to Abraham (וַיֵּרָ֤א אֵלָיו֙ יְהוָ֔ה).
Genesis 18:2 tells us how YHWH appeared to him.
He raised his eyes (וַיִּשָּׂ֤א עֵינָיו) and saw three men (וַיַּ֔רְא וְהִנֵּה֙ שְׁלֹשָׁ֣ה אֲנָשִׁ֔ים).
It is interesting that in Genesis 18:3 he addresses one of the men using the title Adonay (אֲדֹנָ֗י) reserved only for YHWH (אֲדֹנָ֗י אִם־נָ֨א מָצָ֤אתִי חֵן֙ בְּעֵינֶ֔יךָ אַל־נָ֥א תַעֲבֹ֖ר מֵעַ֥ל עַבְדֶּֽךָ) and we know he is addressing one of the men because it's all masculine singular. It's only in Genesis 18:4-5 that he addresses all three (Plural: רַחֲצ֖וּ רַגְלֵיכֶ֑ם, וְהִֽשָּׁעֲנ֖וּ).
So in this introduction we are informed that YHWH appeared to Abraham. Of the three men he addressed, one is Adonay (אֲדֹנָ֗י), a title reserved exclusively for YHWH.
The three remain under the tree and are entertained by Abraham (“וַיִּקַּ֨ח חֶמְאָ֜ה וְחָלָ֗ב וּבֶן־הַבָּקָר֙ אֲשֶׁ֣ר עָשָׂ֔ה וַיִּתֵּ֖ן לִפְנֵיהֶ֑ם וְהֽוּא־עֹמֵ֧ד עֲלֵיהֶ֛ם תַּ֥חַת הָעֵ֖ץ וַיֹּאכֵֽלוּ׃”
Genesis 18:8).
They ask where Sarah might be and then one of them, YHWH speaks in Genesis 18:9 and says he will return the following year (וַיֹּאמְר֣וּ אֵׄלָ֔ׄיׄוׄ אַיֵּ֖ה שָׂרָ֣ה אִשְׁתֶּ֑ךָ וַיֹּ֖אמֶר הִנֵּ֥ה בָאֹֽהֶל׃). We know it's YHWH because Genesis 21:1-2 tells us

"So Sarah conceived and bore a son to Abraham in his old age, at the appointed time of which God had spoken to him."
Sarah was listening to this conversation from the tent. Who was she listening to? The three men under the tree, one of whom was Adonay. When she laughed at what God had just said to Abraham, the identity of Adonay was made plain in Genesis 18:13, "YHWH said to Abraham..." (וַיֹּ֥אמֶר יְהוָ֖ה אֶל־אַבְרָהָ֑ם)

The three men got up to go in Genesis 18:16 and Abraham walked with them (וַיָּקֻ֤מוּ מִשָּׁם֙ הָֽאֲנָשִׁ֔ים וַיַּשְׁקִ֖פוּ ... וְאַ֨בְרָהָ֔ם הֹלֵ֥ךְ עִמָּ֖ם). YHWH spoke again from Genesis 18:17 (וַֽיהֹוָ֖ה אָמָ֑ר, וַיֹּ֣אמֶר יְהוָ֔ה). Genesis 18:22 tells us that the men turned away towards Sodom (וַיִּפְנ֤וּ מִשָּׁם֙ הָֽאֲנָשִׁ֔ים וַיֵּלְכ֖וּ סְדֹ֑מָה) but Abraham stayed with YHWH (וְאַ֨בְרָהָ֔ם עוֹדֶ֥נּוּ עֹמֵ֖ד לִפְנֵ֥י יְהוָֽה) while the other two men left. How do we know only two left? Because Genesis 19:1 tells us that two messengers (שְׁנֵ֨י הַמַּלְאָכִ֤ים) arrived at Sodom. Where was the third? Back with Abraham obviously. After some haggling about Sodom YHWH eventually left and Abraham returned to his tent (וַיֵּ֣לֶךְ יְהוָ֔ה). God walked off to join the others. YHWH/Adonay is mentioned then in Genesis 19:17 outside Sodom where he has rejoined the other two (וַיֹּ֙אמֶר֙ הִמָּלֵ֣ט). Lot answered Adonay, "... no my Lord..." (אַל־נָ֖א אֲדֹנָ֗י). Genesis 19:19 contains words in the masculine singular. Lot pleads with Adonay/YHWH.
Then in Genesis 19:24 YHWH, one of the men, addressed earlier with the divine title Adonay is described as... YHWH. And YHWH standing there causes fire to rain down from YHWH in heaven.

YHWH appeared to Abraham as Adonay, one of the three men, to speak about the promised son and the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. His appearance is human and according to Genesis19:24 he is separate from YHWH in heaven.

Notes:

To be seen

In Hebrew let's remember what appear (ראה) means in context. It is niphal and passive. It means to be seen, to become visible. For instance, in Genesis 46:29 Joseph met his father and when he came into view and was seen the phrase וַיֵּרָ֥א אֵלָ֖יו is used, the same phrase as used in Genesis 18. When Ezekiel described the appearance of the cherubim in Ezekiel 10:8 he used the phrase וַיֵּרָ֖א. The same can be seen in Ezekiel 19:11. The Malakh YHWH is described as appearing to people (וַ֠יֵּרָא מַלְאַ֨ךְ יְהֹוָ֥ה אֵלָ֛יו - Exodus 3:2; וַיֵּרָ֥א אֵלָ֖יו Judges 6:12). In each case something was seen physically. An object was in view.

So in Genesis 18:1 (and 12:1 and 17:1) YHWH became visible to Abraham.

“And Joseph harnessed his chariot, and he went up to meet Israel his father, to Goshen, and HE APPEARED to him (וַיֵּרָ֥א אֵלָ֖יו), and he fell on his neck, and he wept on his neck for a long time.” (Genesis 46:29 from Complete Jewish Bible, Chabad)

And YHWH (וַֽיהוָ֗ה - subject of the sentence) caused it to rain (הִמְטִ֧יר - hifil, causative sense) on Sodom and Gomorrah... from YHWH (מֵאֵ֥ת יְהוָ֖ה - direct object אֵ֥ת of the sentence with preposition מִן pointing to source) out of heaven (מִן־הַשָּׁמָֽיִם - and the origin).
YHWH is the subject standing and speaking with Lot and he causes it to rain fire etc from another source, heaven and another object who is also YHWH. The one YHWH is the subject of the sentence who directs another called YHWH who is in another location (הַשָּׁמָֽיִם) to cause the action.

Subject (יהוה) - Action: caused rain (הִמְטִ֧יר) - Object and source: (מֵאֵ֥ת יְהוָ֖ה) - Location (מִן־הַשָּׁמָֽיִם)

 

There is a difference in the use of Adonay in the Tanakh. In Genesis 18:3 it reads
וַיֹּאמַ֑ר אֲדֹנָ֗י אִם־נָ֨א מָצָ֤אתִי חֵן֙ בְּעֵינֶ֔יךָ אַל־נָ֥א תַעֲבֹ֖ר מֵעַ֥ל עַבְדֶּֽךָ׃
Adonai (אֲדֹנָ֗י) is the subject and has singular pronouns associated with it (בְּעֵינֶ֔יךָ, עַבְדֶּֽךָ - 'your' singular) and a singular verb (תַעֲבֹ֖ר)
Whereas, in Genesis 19:2 it reads
וַיֹּ֜אמֶר הִנֶּ֣ה נָּא־אֲדֹנַ֗י ס֣וּרוּ נָ֠א אֶל־בֵּ֨ית עַבְדְּכֶ֤ם וְלִ֙ינוּ֙ וְרַחֲצ֣וּ רַגְלֵיכֶ֔ם וְהִשְׁכַּמְתֶּ֖ם וַהֲלַכְתֶּ֣ם לְדַרְכְּכֶ֑ם וַיֹּאמְר֣וּ לֹּ֔א כִּ֥י בָרְח֖וֹב נָלִֽין
Adonai (אֲדֹנַ֗י), pointed with a patach, is the subject and has plural pronouns (עַבְדְּכֶ֤ם, רַגְלֵיכֶ֔ם, הִשְׁכַּמְתֶּ֖ם, דַרְכְּכֶ֑ם) and plural verbs (רַחֲצ֣וּ, ס֣וּרוּ, לִ֙ינוּ֙).
So in Genesis 18:3 Adonay is sort of a plural of majesty (like elohim) and is used with the masculine singular. It is always and only used of YHWH in this way and is translated Lord, whereas in Genesis 19:2 Adonay is a straight plural used with plural pronouns and verbs and is translated 'lords'.

Seen by Jacob

Genesis 32:30
וַיִּקְרָ֧א יַעֲקֹ֛ב שֵׁ֥ם הַמָּק֖וֹם פְּנִיאֵ֑ל כִּֽי־רָאִ֤יתִי אֱלֹהִים֙ פָּנִ֣ים אֶל־פָּנִ֔ים וַתִּנָּצֵ֖ל נַפְשִֽׁי

 

 

“...and there he built an altar and called the place El-bethel, because there God had revealed himself to him when he fled from his brother.” (Genesis 35:7)
וַיִּ֤בֶן שָׁם֙ מִזְבֵּ֔חַ וַיִּקְרָא֙ לַמָּק֔וֹם אֵ֖ל בֵּֽית־אֵ֑ל כִּ֣י שָׁ֗ם נִגְל֤וּ אֵלָיו֙ הָֽאֱלֹהִ֔ים בְּבָרְח֖וֹ מִפְּנֵ֥י אָחִֽיו׃
“And Jacob was left alone. And a man wrestled with him until the breaking of the day.” (Genesis 32:24)
“וַיִּוָּתֵ֥ר יַעֲקֹ֖ב לְבַדּ֑וֹ וַיֵּאָבֵ֥ק אִישׁ֙ עִמּ֔וֹ עַ֖ד עֲל֥וֹת הַשָּֽׁחַר׃”
“...But Jacob said, “I will not let you go unless you bless me.”” (Genesis 32:26)
“... וַיֹּ֙אמֶר֙ לֹ֣א אֲשַֽׁלֵּחֲךָ֔ כִּ֖י אִם־בֵּרַכְתָּֽנִי׃”
“...you have striven with God and with men, and have prevailed.”” (Genesis 32:28)
“... כִּֽי־שָׂרִ֧יתָ עִם־אֱלֹהִ֛ים וְעִם־אֲנָשִׁ֖ים וַתּוּכָֽל”
“Then Jacob asked him, “Please tell me your name.” But he said, “Why is it that you ask my name?” And there he blessed him.” (Genesis 32:29)
“וַיִּשְׁאַ֣ל יַעֲקֹ֗ב וַיֹּ֙אמֶר֙ הַגִּֽידָה־נָּ֣א שְׁמֶ֔ךָ וַיֹּ֕אמֶר לָ֥מָּה זֶּ֖ה תִּשְׁאַ֣ל לִשְׁמִ֑י וַיְבָ֥רֶךְ אֹת֖וֹ שָֽׁם׃”
“So Jacob called the name of the place Peniel, saying, “For I have seen God face to face, and yet my life has been delivered.”” (Genesis 32:30)
“וַיִּקְרָ֧א יַעֲקֹ֛ב שֵׁ֥ם הַמָּק֖וֹם פְּנִיאֵ֑ל כִּֽי־רָאִ֤יתִי אֱלֹהִים֙ פָּנִ֣ים אֶל־פָּנִ֔ים וַתִּנָּצֵ֖ל נַפְשִֽׁי׃”
“Jacob ...in his manhood he strove with God.” (Hosea 12:3)
“... וּבְאוֹנ֖וֹ שָׂרָ֥ה אֶת־אֱלֹהִֽים׃”
“He strove with the Malakh and prevailed; he wept and sought HIS favour. He MET GOD at Bethel... even יהוה, the God of hosts, יהוה is his memorial name:” (Hosea 12:4–5)
“וָיָּ֤שַׂר אֶל־מַלְאָךְ֙ וַיֻּכָ֔ל בָּכָ֖ה וַיִּתְחַנֶּן־ל֑וֹ בֵּֽית־אֵל֙ יִמְצָאֶ֔נּוּ וְשָׁ֖ם... וַֽיהוָ֖ה אֱלֹהֵ֣י הַצְּבָא֑וֹת יְהוָ֖ה זִכְרֽוֹ׃”

“And he blessed Joseph and said, “The GOD before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac walked, the GOD who has been my shepherd all my life long to this day, the MALAKH who has redeemed me from all evil, bless the boys...”” (Genesis 48:15–16)
“וַיְבָ֥רֶךְ אֶת־יוֹסֵ֖ף וַיֹּאמַ֑ר הָֽאֱלֹהִ֡ים אֲשֶׁר֩ הִתְהַלְּכ֨וּ אֲבֹתַ֤י לְפָנָיו֙ אַבְרָהָ֣ם וְיִצְחָ֔ק הָֽאֱלֹהִים֙ הָרֹעֶ֣ה אֹתִ֔י מֵעוֹדִ֖י עַד־הַיּ֥וֹם הַזֶּֽה׃ הַמַּלְאָךְ֩ הַגֹּאֵ֨ל אֹתִ֜י מִכָּל־רָ֗ע יְבָרֵךְ֮ אֶת־הַנְּעָרִים֒ ”


God revealed himself to Jacob as a man who is identified as the Malakh יהוה, who wrestled with him. Jacob sought to be blessed by him. He is told by the man he wrestled with that he was God. Jacob asked his name and got blessed. He was so convinced he had physically encountered God that he named the place פְּנִיאֵ֑ל (face/presence of El), stating that he had seen God face to face and did not die! Hosea described this incident with the Malakh as a meeting with God, in fact יהוה of hosts. Looking back on his life and blessing Joseph's sons he equated the Malakh with God (Elsewhere in Tanakh we read: Zechariah 12:8 "...and the house of David will be like God (כֵּֽאלֹהִ֔ים), like the Malakh יהוה before them." In this verse God and the Malakh are equivalents).
“Jacob... came to a certain place and stayed there that night... And he dreamed, and behold, there was a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven... יהוה stood above it and said, “I am יהוה ... Behold, I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land... Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, “Surely יהוה is in this place, and I did not know it.” (Genesis 28:10–22)
“וַיֵּצֵ֥א יַעֲקֹ֖ב מִבְּאֵ֣ר שָׁ֑בַע וַיֵּ֖לֶךְ חָרָֽנָה׃ וַיִּפְגַּ֨ע בַּמָּק֜וֹם וַיָּ֤לֶן שָׁם֙ כִּי־בָ֣א הַשֶּׁ֔מֶשׁ וַיִּקַּח֙ מֵאַבְנֵ֣י הַמָּק֔וֹם וַיָּ֖שֶׂם מְרַֽאֲשֹׁתָ֑יו וַיִּשְׁכַּ֖ב בַּמָּק֥וֹם הַהֽוּא׃ וַֽיַּחֲלֹ֗ם וְהִנֵּ֤ה סֻלָּם֙ מֻצָּ֣ב אַ֔רְצָה וְרֹאשׁ֖וֹ מַגִּ֣יעַ הַשָּׁמָ֑יְמָה וְהִנֵּה֙ מַלְאֲכֵ֣י אֱלֹהִ֔ים עֹלִ֥ים וְיֹרְדִ֖ים בּֽוֹ׃ וְהִנֵּ֨ה יְהוָ֜ה נִצָּ֣ב עָלָיו֮ וַיֹּאמַר֒ אֲנִ֣י יְהוָ֗ה אֱלֹהֵי֙ אַבְרָהָ֣ם אָבִ֔יךָ וֵאלֹהֵ֖י יִצְחָ֑ק הָאָ֗רֶץ אֲשֶׁ֤ר אַתָּה֙ שֹׁכֵ֣ב עָלֶ֔יהָ לְךָ֥ אֶתְּנֶ֖נָּה וּלְזַרְעֶֽךָ׃”
“וְהִנֵּ֨ה אָנֹכִ֜י עִמָּ֗ךְ וּשְׁמַרְתִּ֙יךָ֙ בְּכֹ֣ל אֲשֶׁר־תֵּלֵ֔ךְ וַהֲשִׁ֣בֹתִ֔יךָ אֶל־הָאֲדָמָ֖ה הַזֹּ֑את כִּ֚י לֹ֣א אֶֽעֱזָבְךָ֔ עַ֚ד אֲשֶׁ֣ר אִם־עָשִׂ֔יתִי אֵ֥ת אֲשֶׁר־דִּבַּ֖רְתִּי לָֽךְ׃ וַיִּיקַ֣ץ יַעֲקֹב֮ מִשְּׁנָתוֹ֒ וַיֹּ֕אמֶר אָכֵן֙ יֵ֣שׁ יְהוָ֔ה בַּמָּק֖וֹם הַזֶּ֑ה וְאָנֹכִ֖י לֹ֥א יָדָֽעְתִּי׃”
“Then the Malakh Elohim said to me in the dream... I am the God of Bethel, where you anointed a pillar and made a vow to me. " (Genesis 31:11–13)
“וַיֹּ֨אמֶר אֵלַ֜י מַלְאַ֧ךְ הָאֱלֹהִ֛ים בַּחֲל֖וֹם ... אָנֹכִ֤י הָאֵל֙ בֵּֽית־אֵ֔ל אֲשֶׁ֨ר מָשַׁ֤חְתָּ שָּׁם֙ מַצֵּבָ֔ה אֲשֶׁ֨ר נָדַ֥רְתָּ לִּ֛י שָׁ֖ם...”
God appeared to Jacob in a dream at Bethel. Later, the Malakh Elohim/יהוה appears in another dream and identifies himself as the God of Bethel, to whom Jacob had made a vow.


As Heiser says: "How does it make sense to have the angel in Genesis 31 essentially saying, “I’m the messenger of Yahweh, but consider me Yahweh for the sake of protocol” when no such protocol mediation was necessary in the earlier event referenced by the angel? It makes far more sense to take the [Malakh] at his word: “I am the God of Bethel—you’ve seen me before."

Michael S. Heiser, Angels: What the Bible Really Says about God’s Heavenly Host 

(Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2018), 62.

Seen by Moses

Exodus 3:6
וַיֹּ֗אמֶר אָנֹכִי֙ אֱלֹהֵ֣י אָבִ֔יךָ אֱלֹהֵ֧י אַבְרָהָ֛ם אֱלֹהֵ֥י יִצְחָ֖ק וֵאלֹהֵ֣י יַעֲקֹ֑ב וַיַּסְתֵּ֤ר מֹשֶׁה֙ פָּנָ֔יו כִּ֣י יָרֵ֔א מֵהַבִּ֖יט אֶל־הָאֱלֹהִֽים

Now Moses... came to Horeb... The מַלְאַ֨ךְ יְהֹוָ֥ה appeared to him in a blazing fire from the midst of a bush... So Moses said, “I must turn aside now and see... When יְהוָ֖ה saw that he turned aside to look, אֱלֹהִ֜ים called to him from the midst of the bush... He said also, “I am...
אֱלֹהֵ֣י אָבִ֔יךָ אֱלֹהֵ֧י אַבְרָהָ֛ם אֱלֹהֵ֥י יִצְחָ֖ק וֵאלֹהֵ֣י יַעֲקֹ֑ב
...Then Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at הָאֱלֹהִֽים.

So here we have it. Moses came to the mountain of God and the מַלְאַ֨ךְ יְהֹוָ֥ה appeared to him from fire in a bush. Moses shows interest and the one in the flame who is named as both יְהוָ֖ה and God speaks to Moses: 'God called to him from the midst of the bush'. So the one who appeared is מַלְאַ֨ךְ יְהֹוָ֥ה but the author states that this one is God and יְהוָ֖ה. This is not the narrative but the author of Exodus telling us that God called to Moses from the bush. And the one in the flame in the bush states that he is the God of the Patriarchs. Moses recognised that the מַלְאַ֨ךְ יְהֹוָ֥ה who had appeared to him was God. There is no sense here of the מַלְאָךְ speaking for God, the מַלְאָךְ is God!

Let's look further in Exodus 3 and 4... יְהוָ֖ה said, “I have surely seen the affliction of My people... “So I HAVE COME DOWN to deliver them... and TO BRING THEM UP ...to a good and spacious land... I will send you (Moses) to Pharaoh... Then Moses said to God... I will say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you.’ ... say to them (elders), ‘יְהוָ֖ה, the אֱלֹהִ֜ים of your fathers... has APPEARED to me... I will bring you up... to the land of the Canaanite and the Hittite and the Amorite and the Perizzite and the Hivite and the Jebusite... יְהוָ֖ה, the אֱלֹהִ֜ים of the Hebrews, has met with us... Then Moses said... they may say, ‘יְהוָ֖ה has not APPEARED to you.’ ...“יְהוָ֖ה, the אֱלֹהִ֜ים of their fathers... has APPEARED to you.”

So God says that he has come down to deliver them. God sends Moses to the people. He is to tell them that God appeared to him. This recurs in the passage. We need to ask: Who appeared? Verse 2 tells us מַלְאַ֨ךְ יְהֹוָ֥ה appeared. מַלְאַ֨ךְ יְהֹוָ֥ה speaks as and is addressed as יְהוָ֖ה and God. There is no 'Thus says יְהוָ֖ה' mediator here but God speaking in his capacity as מַלְאַ֨ךְ יְהֹוָ֥ה.

In this passage God promises to bring up the people to the Promised Land. Now compare:

Judges 2:1-2, 2-3, 5
...the Malakh יהוה came up... And he said, “I brought you up out of Egypt and led you into the land which I have sworn to your fathers; and I said, ‘I will never break My covenant with you
...and as for you... you have not obeyed Me... Therefore I also said, ‘I will not drive them out before you; but they will become as thorns in your sides and their gods will be a snare to you.
יהוה

...When the Malakh יהוה spoke these words to all the sons of Israel, the people lifted up their voices and wept.
When compared with Exodus 20:2 "I am יהוה your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt." it becomes clear that Malakh יהוה is distinct from but yet one with

So what's in a name?

Jesus "...Holy Father, keep them in your name, the name which you have given Me... I have made your name known to them, and will make it known..."
The name יהוה is given to Jesus and this is not a surprise because we find the same in Tanakh. "“Behold, I am going to send Malakh (מַלְאָךְ) before you to guard you along the way and to bring you into the place which I have prepared. “Be on your guard before him and obey his voice; do not be rebellious toward him, for he will not pardon your transgression, since MY NAME IS WITHIN HIM..."
Now in view of what יהוה says in Isaiah: “I am יהוה, that is My name; I will not give My glory to another...", we have a problem because another is sharing the name יהוה. But if, as is shown throughout Tanakh more than one is addressed as יהוה then the problem disappears.

Seen by the Elders of Israel

Exodus 24:10-11
וַיִּרְא֕וּ אֵ֖ת אֱלֹהֵ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵ֑ל וְתַ֣חַת רַגְלָ֗יו כְּמַעֲשֵׂה֙ לִבְנַ֣ת הַסַּפִּ֔יר וּכְעֶ֥צֶם הַשָּׁמַ֖יִם לָטֹֽהַר׃ וְאֶל־אֲצִילֵי֙ בְּנֵ֣י יִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל לֹ֥א שָׁלַ֖ח יָד֑וֹ וַֽיֶּחֱזוּ֙אֶת־הָ֣אֱלֹהִ֔ים וַיֹּאכְל֖וּ וַיִּשְׁתּֽוּ

Notes:

The particular construction of ראה used here is וַיִּרְא֕וּ, (Qal, wayyiqtol, 3M pl) and is found elsewhere in these texts:
Genesis 6:2, 12:14, 12:15, 37:4, 37:18, 37:25, 42:35, 50:15, Exodus 5:19, 16:15, 24:10, 17:24, 20:29, 32:1, 32:9, 8:20, Judges 1:24, 3:24, 9:55, 16:24, 18:7, 20:36, 1 Samuel 5:7, 6:13, 10:11, 14:16, 17:51, 31:7, 2 Samuel 10:6, 10:19, 1 Kings 13:12, 13:25, 2 Kings 2:15, 3:22, 6:20, 1 Chronicles 10:7, 19:6, 19:19,2 Chronicles 31:8, Ezekiel 20:28.
It means to see with the eyes. For instance in Genesis 6:2 "...the sons of God saw that the daughters of men were beautiful..." And in Genesis 12:14 "...the Egyptians saw that the woman (Sarah) was very beautiful." And in Genesis 37:18 "When they saw him (Joseph) from a distance..." And in Exodus 16:15 "When the sons of Israel saw it (Manna)..." And Numbers 32:9 "For when they went up to the valley of Eshcol and saw the land..." " And 1 Kings 13:25 "And behold, men passed by and saw the body thrown on the road..." And 2 Chronicles 31:8 "When Hezekiah and the rulers came and saw the heaps..." Etc.
In each case the observers physically saw something with their eyes. But even if we were to say, and I don't see it in this context, that they had some sort of vision, they still actually saw God and he had a visible form and was surrounded by visible objects. They see his feet and under his feet, a beautiful construction (מַעֲשֶׂה). This seeing is reiterated with '... they beheld (חזה)... ate... drank.' In a number of prophetic contexts חזה is used to describe a vision (Let's not forget that a vision by definition, is something seen whether internally or projected onto a physical background) but like this instance it refers to 'beholding'. Compare Isaiah 33:17 "מֶ֥לֶךְ בְּיָפְי֖וֹ תֶּחֱזֶ֣ינָה עֵינֶ֑יךָ"
'The King in his beauty, your eyes will see (תֶּחֱזֶ֣ינָה)...'
"חֲזֵ֣ה צִיּ֔וֹן... עֵינֶיךָ תִרְאֶ֨ינָה יְרוּשָׁלִַ֜ם" In verse 20 it reads 'See/behold (חזה) Zion... Your eyes will see Jerusalem...'
There is no suggestion in Exodus 24:10-11 that they were experiencing a mass vision but a very real appearance of God. In fact, in the next verse, Moses is then invited to go up and join יהוה on the mountain! Whatever they all saw was in a location on the mountain and Moses then went up to that place where God was standing. After a protracted period of instruction to Moses we read: “And he gave to Moses, when he had finished speaking with him on Mount Sinai, the two tablets of the testimony, tablets of stone, written with the finger of God.” (Exodus 31:18) “Then Moses turned and went down from the mountain with the two tablets of the testimony in his hand... The tablets were the work of God, and the writing was the writing of God, engraved on the tablets.” (Exodus 32:15, 16).
Finally, Exodus 24:1f states: "Then He said to Moses, “COME UP TO יהוה, you and Aaron, Nadab and Abihu and seventy of the elders of Israel, and YOU SHALL WORSHIP AT A DISTANCE. “Moses alone, however, SHALL COME NEAR to יהוה...”"
This confirms an actual appearance of God. They were to ascend to a certain geographical location on the mountain where they would see God. Afterwards, Moses would be allowed to approach God.

Seen by Joshua

Joshua 5:13, 14-15, 6:2

וַיְהִ֗י בִּֽהְי֣וֹת יְהוֹשֻׁעַ֮ בִּירִיחוֹ֒ וַיִּשָּׂ֤א עֵינָיו֙ וַיַּ֔רְא וְהִנֵּה־אִישׁ֙ עֹמֵ֣ד לְנֶגְדּ֔וֹ וְחַרְבּ֥וֹ שְׁלוּפָ֖ה בְּיָד֑וֹ וַיֵּ֨לֶךְ יְהוֹשֻׁ֤עַ אֵלָיו֙ וַיֹּ֣אמֶר ל֔וֹ הֲלָ֥נוּ אַתָּ֖ה אִם־לְצָרֵֽינוּ׃ וַיֹּ֣אמֶר׀ לֹ֗א כִּ֛י אֲנִ֥י שַׂר־צְבָֽא־יְהוָ֖ה עַתָּ֣ה בָ֑אתִי וַיִּפֹּל֩ יְהוֹשֻׁ֨עַ אֶל־פָּנָ֥יו אַ֙רְצָה֙ וַיִּשְׁתָּ֔חוּ וַיֹּ֣אמֶר ל֔וֹ מָ֥ה אֲדֹנִ֖י מְדַבֵּ֥ר אֶל־עַבְדּֽוֹ׃ וַיֹּאמֶר֩ שַׂר־צְבָ֨א יְהוָ֜ה אֶל־יְהוֹשֻׁ֗עַ שַׁל־נַֽעַלְךָ֙ מֵעַ֣ל רַגְלֶ֔ךָ כִּ֣י הַמָּק֗וֹם אֲשֶׁ֥ר אַתָּ֛ה עֹמֵ֥ד עָלָ֖יו קֹ֣דֶשׁ ה֑וּא וַיַּ֥עַשׂ יְהוֹשֻׁ֖עַ כֵּֽן׃

Daniel 8:11 shows us that שַֽׂר is the title of God:
"It even magnified itself to be equal with the Commander of the host (שַֽׂר־הַצָּבָ֖א); and it removed the regular sacrifice from Him, and the place of His sanctuary was thrown down."

So the one who appeared to Joshua as שַׂר־צְבָֽא־יְהֹוָ֖ה can quite rightly be understood as divine. And that divine one appeared as 'a man' and was worshiped by Joshua, and like Moses in Exodus 3, removed his sandals in the presence of God, the Malakh Yahweh.

Seen by Gideon

Judges 6:11-23
וַיַּ֣רְא גִּדְע֔וֹן כִּֽי־מַלְאַ֥ךְ יְהוָ֖ה ה֑וּא וַיֹּ֣אמֶר גִּדְע֗וֹן אֲהָהּ֙ אֲדֹנָ֣י יְהוִ֔ה כִּֽי־עַל־כֵּ֤ן רָאִ֙יתִי֙ מַלְאַ֣ךְ יְהוָ֔ה פָּנִ֖ים אֶל־פָּנִֽים׃ וַיֹּ֨אמֶר ל֧וֹ יְהוָ֛ה שָׁל֥וֹם לְךָ֖ אַל־תִּירָ֑א לֹ֖א תָּמֽוּת


The Malakh Yahweh visits Gideon:

...the Malakh יהוה came and sat under the oak that was in Ophrah
...The Malakh יהוה appeared to [Gideon] and said to him, “יהוה is with you, O valiant warrior.”
Not recognising יהוה: ...Then Gideon said to him... Did not יהוה bring us up from Egypt?
Malakh יהוה now addresses him as יהוה
... יהוה looked at him and said... Have I not sent you? ...יהוה said to him, “Surely I will be with you."
Gideon wants to be sure that the Malakh יהוה is יהוה
...Gideon said to Him, “If now I have found favour in your sight, then show me a sign that it is you who speaks with me
...Please do not depart from here, until I come back to You, and bring out my offering and lay it before you.
...He said, “I will remain until you return.
...Then Gideon went in and prepared... and brought them out to him under the oak and presented them.

The Malakh יהוה accepted Gideon's offering
...The Malakh of God said to him, “Take the meat and the unleavened bread and lay them on this rock, and pour out the broth.” And he did so.
...the Malakh יהוה put out the end of the staff that was in his hand and touched the meat and the unleavened bread; and fire sprang up from the rock and consumed the meat and the unleavened bread.
...the Malakh יהוה vanished from his sight.
Gideon is concerned for his life because he is aware that the Malakh יהוה is God:
...When Gideon saw that he was the Malakh יהוה, he said, “Alas, O Lord God! For now I have seen the Malakh יהוה face to face.
The Malakh יהוה speaks and reassures him:
"...יהוה said to him, “Peace to you, do not fear; you shall not die.” (Judges 6:22-23)

Seen by Manoah and his Wife

Judges 13:3, 5, 22

וַיֹּ֧אמֶר מָנ֛וֹחַ אֶל־אִשְׁתּ֖וֹ מ֣וֹת נָמ֑וּת כִּ֥י אֱלֹהִ֖ים רָאִֽינוּ
The Malakh appeared to Manoah's wife as a man but was more than a man.(Judges 13:8-10, )

Both Manoah and his wife encountered Malakh YHWH again and wished to show hospitality to him

(Judges 13:15-16, 17-18, 19-20, 21, 22-23)

Notice the interchange in Judges 13:20-21, 22-23 between the man being called YHWH and Malakh YHWH. The Malakh is now called simply YHWH... the one who works wonders...

and Manoah and his wife were watching. And when the flame went up toward heaven from the altar, the Malakh YHWH went up in the flame of the altar. Malakh YHWH accepted their offering (עלה) and ascended in it... Manoah and his wife were watching, and they fell on their faces to the ground... Malakh YHWH appeared no more to Manoah and to his wife. The emphasis is on seeing... but seeing what?

Then Manoah knew that he was the Malakh YHWH.
And Manoah said to his wife, “We shall surely die, for we have seen God.”

They saw God. The Malakh was God in human form and they thought they would die!

But his wife said to him, “If the Lord (יהוה)  had meant to kill us, he would not have accepted the  burnt offering and a grain offering at our hands, or shown us all these things, or now announced to us such things as these.”

The Malakh is called God and identified as YHWH (יהוה).

Seen by David

Then Solomon began to build the house of יהוה in Jerusalem on Mount Moriah, where he (יהוה) had appeared to David his father, at the place that David had appointed, on the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite.” (2 Chronicles 3:1)

So יהוה APPEARED to David. Now what do we read about this incident:

And David lifted his eyes and SAW Malakh YHWH (מַלְאַ֤ךְ יְהוָה) standing between earth and heaven, and in his hand a drawn sword stretched out over Jerusalem. Then David and the elders, clothed in sackcloth, fell upon their faces.” (1 Chronicles 21:16)

So the writer of Chronicles says that יהוה appeared to David. Yet the incident describes the one appearing as being Malakh YHWH (מַלְאַ֤ךְ יְהוָה). The conclusion is clear, especially in view of the many other incidences. Malakh YHWH is God in visible human form.

Seen by Isaiah

Isaiah 6:1, 5
בִּשְׁנַת־מוֹת֙ הַמֶּ֣לֶךְ עֻזִּיָּ֔הוּ וָאֶרְאֶ֧ה אֶת־אֲדֹנָ֛י יֹשֵׁ֥ב עַל־כִּסֵּ֖א רָ֣ם וְנִשָּׂ֑א וְשׁוּלָ֖יו מְלֵאִ֥ים אֶת־הַהֵיכָֽל׃וָאֹמַ֞ר אֽוֹי־לִ֣י כִֽי־נִדְמֵ֗יתִי כִּ֣י אִ֤ישׁ טְמֵֽא־שְׂפָתַ֙יִם֙ אָנֹ֔כִי וּבְתוֹךְ֙ עַם־טְמֵ֣א שְׂפָתַ֔יִם אָנֹכִ֖י יוֹשֵׁ֑ב כִּ֗י אֶת־הַמֶּ֛לֶךְ יְהוָ֥ה צְבָא֖וֹת רָא֥וּ עֵינָֽי

 Jesus and the Malakh YHWH

The New Testament identifies Jesus as the Malakh. Remember, a malakh is one who is sent without reference to the nature of the one sent.
When 1 Corinthians 10:1 is compared with Exodus 13:21, and Exodus 14:19, 24 the Malakh of God, who had been going before the camp of Israel, moved and went behind them; and the pillar of cloud moved from before them and stood behind them. It goes on to say that '...at the morning watch, YHWH looked down on the army of the Egyptians through the pillar of fire and cloud...'
Numbers 14:14 says that it was YHWH who was among the people. And Psalm 78:14 says that '...he led them with the cloud by day And all the night with a light of fire.'
It was the Malakh who accompanied the nation and the New Testament says that it was the Messiah who accompanied them. He was their spiritual rock. (1 Corinthians 10:4) The association seems clear:
Deuteronomy 32:3-4 and Deuteronomy 32:15, 18

Jude 5 Now I want to remind you, although you once fully knew it, that Jesus*, who saved a people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe.
* The reading Ἰησοῦς/Jesus [enjoys] ...the strongest support from a variety of early witnesses (e.g., A B 33 81 1241 1739 1881 2344 pc vg co Or1739mg)... The NET Bible (Biblical Studies Press, 2005).)

Exodus 12:51 says that YHWH brought the people out of Egypt and yet...

Judges 2:1 says that the Malakh YHWH brought Israel out of Egypt

And 1 Corinthians 10:4-5, 9 says 'all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank from the spiritual Rock that followed them, and the Rock was Messiah. Nevertheless, with most of them God was not pleased, for they were overthrown in the wilderness.... We must not put *Messiah/Christ to the test, as some of them did and were destroyed by serpents.'
* Χριστόν (Christon, “Christ”) is attested in the majority of MSS, including many important witnesses of the Alexandrian (𝔓46 1739 1881) and Western (D F G) textvtypes, and other MSS and versions (Ψ latt sy co). The NET Bible (Biblical Studies Press, 2005).


Numbers 26:65 For YHWH had said of them, “They shall die in the wilderness.” Not one of them was left, except Caleb the son of Jephunneh and Joshua the son of Nun.

John 8:58

εἶπεν αὐτοῖς Ἰησοῦς· Ἀμὴν ἀμὴν λέγω ὑμῖν, πρὶν Ἀβραὰμ γενέσθαι ἐγὼ εἰμί.” (John 8:58)
הֵשִׁיב לָהֶם יֵשׁוּעַ׃ ״אָמֵן אָמֵן אֲנִי אוֹמֵר לָכֶם, בְּטֶרֶם הֱיוֹת אַבְרָהָם, אֲנִי הוּא.

"So the Judeans said to Him, “You are not yet fifty years old, and have You seen Abraham?” Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was born, I am.” Therefore they picked up stones to throw at Him, but Jesus hid Himself and went out of the temple."

The lead up to his statement is this:

“So they were saying to Him, “Where is Your Father?” Jesus answered, “You know neither Me nor My Father; if you knew Me, you would know My Father also.” (John 8:19)

“And He was saying to them, “You are from below, I am from above; you are of this world, I am not of this world.” (John 8:23)

““I speak the things which I have seen with My Father; therefore you also do the things which you heard from your father.”” (John 8:38)

Jesus took their statement to another level. Not only had he seen Abraham but he was in existence not just before Abraham (which would read ἤμην - ‘I was’) but eternally ‘ἐγὼ εἰμί’. Notice that their response was to pick up stones to throw at him just as in John 10:31 where we are explicitly told their response was to his perceived blasphemy

“For a good work we do not stone you, but for blasphemy; and because You, being a man, make yourself out to be God.”

What does Torah say about blasphemy? “‘Moreover, the one who blasphemes the name of the Lord shall surely be put to death; all the congregation shall certainly stone him...” (Leviticus 24:16).

So in John 8:59 their response to his claim was to try and stone him.

John 8:58 reads '...πρὶν (before) Ἀβραὰμ γενέσθαι (was/existed) ἐγὼ εἰμί (I myself am/exist).'

The Greek version (LXX) of the Torah (circa 250 BC) translates "אני הוא" in Deuteronomy 32:39 as "‘See now that I am (ἐγώ εἰμι), And there is no god besides Me..."

Isaiah 41:4 "‘I, יהוה , am the first, and with the last. I am he (ἐγώ εἰμι)’ "

And Isaiah 43:10 reads

“You are My witnesses,” declares יהוה, “And My servant whom I have chosen, So that you may know and believe Me And understand that I am He (ἐγώ εἰμι)...

Compare this with the words of Jesus to John in Revelation 1:7:

"When I saw Him, I fell at His feet like a dead man. And He placed His right hand on me, saying, “Do not be afraid; I am (ἐγώ εἰμι) the first and the last..."

Revelation 22:13, 16

"I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end... I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things for the churches. I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star."

Also Isaiah 43:13, 46:4, 48:12. Isaiah 52:6 is interesting because there יהוה says:

"Therefore my people will know my name in that day. For I am (ἐγώ εἰμι/אני הוא), behold I, the one speaking."

There appears to be a subtle pointer here to Exodus 3:14.

In John 10:28-30 we read:

“...I give eternal life to them... and no one will snatch them out of my hand... and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. “I and the Father are one.”

Jesus claims to give eternal life and then puts himself on a par with the Father.

“The Judeans picked up stones again to stone him... “For a good work we do not stone you, but for blasphemy; and because you, being a man, make yourself out to be God.”

Notice it says they picked up stones again. John is referring back to John 8:59 and so tying the charge for both occasions. What did they see as the blasphemy then as well as on this occasion? Claiming deity.

"Jesus answered them, “Has it not been written in your Law, ‘I said, you are gods’? “If he called them gods, to whom the word of God came (and the Scripture cannot be broken), do you say of him, whom the Father sanctified and sent into the world, ‘You are blaspheming,’ because I said, I am the Son of God?"

Many interpret Jesus’ words as directed towards human rulers but a reading of the source, Psalm 82 shows that he is referring to the divine council in heaven who were judged for injustice (to whom the word of God came). If that is the case then what Jesus is asserting is that Tanakh describes the divine council as ‘gods’ and so he too is God but not merely of the created heavenly class but as ontologically one with the uncreated, all powerful Most High Father.

“If I do not do the works of my Father, do not believe me; but if I do them, though you do not believe me, believe the works, so that you may know and understand that the Father is in me, and I in the Father.

He is not just elohim but, as stated in John 5, the unique Son of God.

“Therefore they were seeking again to seize Him, and He eluded their grasp.” (John 10:28–39)

They knew what he was claiming and that’s why they continued to try and take him.

Here is Psalm 82

“Elohim takes His stand in the divine assembly (עדת-אל); He judges in the midst of the gods (אלהים). How long will you judge unjustly and show partiality to the wicked? ...I said, “You are gods (אלהים אתם), And all of you are sons of the Most High. “Nevertheless you will die like men (כאדם תמותון) And fall like any one of the princes.”

Key points:

Not a hint of the Law of Moses, of Sinai, the nation or Torah, in the Psalm. Jesus points to the Tanakh’s acknowledgement of the existence of other elohim (also called malakhim and ‘sons of elohim’) in the heavenly court. There are divine beings in the Tanakh but only one eternal Elohim who is יהוה and Jesus is one with this Elohim who is both יהוה and Father. The other implication is that he is Lord of this heavenly council. The Tanakh points to one who is Malakh and yet God.

Some interpret certain uses of elohim as meaning human judges but Heisler asserts,

"However, neither judges nor elders are found in Exodus 21, and the Old Testament never uses the term elohim for human leaders anywhere else. Many presume that Exodus 18 refers to the elders as elohim, but the text never makes that equation. Elohim there refers, as usual, to God. A comparison of Exodus 21:1–6 (אֶל־הָ֣אֱלֹהִ֔ים) with its parallel in Deuteronomy 15:12–18 further weakens this argument."

(Michael S. Heiser, The Bible Unfiltered: Approaching Scripture on Its Own Terms (Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2017), 63.)

“The Jewish authorities got the message, too—they charged him with blasphemy. Now ask yourself, why would they do that if all Jesus was saying was “you mortal Jews get to call yourselves sons of God, and אלהים, so I can, too.” That makes no sense at all.”

Michael S. Heiser, The Unseen Realm: Recovering the Supernatural Worldview of the Bible, First Edition. (Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2015)

Jesus also said:

“If I do not do the works of my Father, do not believe me; but if I do them, though you do not believe me, believe the works..."

Throughout John's Gospel works (ἔργα) refer to Jesus' powerful miracles in terms of God's salvation. They testify to his authenticity: “...for the works which the Father has given me to accomplish—the very works that I do—testify about Me, that the Father has sent me.” (John 5:36). Jesus works are the works of God (John 9:3). He was to accomplish God's work (John 4:34) and did complete the task (John 17:4) of bringing God's salvation (John 6:29). God's work is Jesus' work and this claim resulted in another attempt to kill him:

“But He answered them, “My Father is working until now, and I Myself am working.” For this reason therefore the Judeans were seeking all the more to kill Him, because He not only was breaking the Sabbath, but also was calling God His own Father, making Himself equal with God. (John 5:17–18).

It was the works which showed he was the divine Messiah (John 10:24-25). He is the source of eternal life and holds believers in the safety of his hand/power. In fact, to be in his hand is to be in the Father's hand. They are one. The context is clear (John 10:24-30). Again, the Judeans knew what he was claiming (John 10:31, 33). The works legitimize his claim (John 10:32):

““If I do not do the works of My Father, do not believe Me; but if I do them, though you do not believe Me, believe the works, so that you may know and understand that the Father is in Me, and I in the Father.”” (John 10:37–38).

Again, they knew what he was claiming and tried to seize him (John 10:39). The works are proof of the unity of the Father and Son:

““Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father is in Me; otherwise believe because of the works themselves.” (John 14:11).

In fact to reject the works of Jesus is to hate both the Father and Son (John 15:24).

Conclusion

The one who became a man is self-existing. The language John uses in chapter 1 makes a distinction between the one eternally existing as the Word and his becoming at a point in time, a man. The Word already existed '...in the beginning', reflecting the words of Genesis 1:1 but the Word became human and lived a human life. Yet he claimed something which the religious leaders saw as blasphemy. In John 8:58 he used a phrase which is applied to God in Isaiah (אני הוא - Isaiah 43:13 et al) and is related to Exodus 3:14. 'I am' in this context was a claim to being eternal and only God is eternal. They certainly got his gist.

John 1:2 says that οὗτος (he) was in the beginning with God. Throughout John οὗτος is both personal and refers to a person. All things were created 'through him'. John states that he 'beheld' the glory of the λόγος in the person of Jesus. John's testimony of Jesus was that he existed before him, as the unique God who manifests the Father to the world.

The paradox is mind blowing. The eternal becomes temporal. The divine becomes a man - completely... but without ceasing to be self-existent. The immortal becomes mortal. The omniscient becomes limited. The omnipresent becomes focused in time and place. Yet God remains God. We see this throughout Tanakh. The one who fills all things and is present in all time is manifest in one place and time. The God who is one is sender and yet sent.

““This is eternal life, that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.” (John 17:3)

“And we know that the Son of God has come, and has given us understanding so that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life.” (1 John 5:20)

“οἴδαμεν δὲ ὅτι ὁ υἱὸς τοῦ θεοῦ ἥκει καὶ δέδωκεν ἡμῖν διάνοιαν ἵνα γινώσκωμεν τὸν ἀληθινόν, καὶ ἐσμὲν ἐν τῷ ἀληθινῷ, ἐν τῷ υἱῷ αὐτοῦ Ἰησοῦ Χριστῷ. οὗτός ἐστιν ὁ ἀληθινὸς θεὸς καὶ ζωὴ αἰώνιος.”

To be in the Son is to be in God. In fact he is the true God.