Did Jesus appeared in the Old Testament in preincarnate form?
In this interview, Dr. David Reagan and I discuss the end time prophetic significance of the increasing attacks on the character of Christ, later televised on our program Christ in Prophecy.
Dr. Reagan: I wrote a lot about the topic of the preincarnate Jesus in my new book Jesus the Lamb and the Lion in chapter 8. One of the reasons I enjoyed writing about that so much is because I decided to use a different format in writing it. I had a man who wrote me one time and gave me a whole bunch of questions about the preincarnate Jesus. And so, I thought I would just respond to his questions. I love to do that. So, the whole of chapter 8 is question and answer.
So, what scriptural evidences are there that Jesus existed before His incarnation? Well, for example, there’s Isaiah 6. In Isaiah 6, Isaiah goes to the Temple to mourn the death of his king, the only king he had ever known. When Isaiah goes there he suddenly sees the King of Kings and Lord of Lords lifted up high and glorious in the Temple. Then, over in the New Testament, we are told point blank that when Isaiah saw the Lord lifted up high and holy he saw Jesus Christ. Now, that is what we call a preincarnate appearance of Jesus.
There are many other preincarnate appearances of Jesus in the Old Testament. Usually He appears as what is called “the Angel of the Lord.” That doesn’t mean that Jesus is an angel, rather it means He is God’s angel, like my wife is my “angel. This term means Jesus is a messenger of the Lord as angel means “messenger.” When Moses saw the burning bush, God spoke to him out of the burning bush and told him take his shoes off as that was holy ground. The next verse says, “And who spoke to him was the Angel of the Lord.” The burning bush was a preincarnate appearance of Jesus.
Nathan Jones: My favorite example of Jesus in the Old Testament is Gideon. Judges 6:22 records, “When Gideon realized that it was the Angel of the Lord he exclaimed, ‘O sovereign Lord, I have seen the Angel of the Lord face to face,’ but the Lord said to him, ‘Peace do not be afraid you are not going to die.’” Gideon saw God incarnate, proof that Jesus was there in the Old Testament.
Dr. Reagan: The Bible says no man has ever seen God the Father. No one has ever seen His face. The Father is spirit. But, they have seen Jesus Christ in preincarnate appearances.
In Psalm 2 Jesus appears to David and says that God has promised Him that one day He will rule over all the nations in the world. He said that to David in Psalm 2.
There are many other preincarnate appearances and I had a lot of fun writing about them. Of course, I end that chapter by talking about whether or not Melchizedek was a preincarnate appearance, though that is highly debatable. I present both sides so that people have to draw their own conclusions.
Nathan Jones: Melchizedek possibly being Jesus was a whole new topic for me reading that one.
In the last part of this series discussing the increasing attacks on Christianity and Christ, I’ll question Dr. Reagan whether he believes Jesus’ miracles prove that He is God in the flesh.