The Manifestations of God - Old Testament
GOD Is Invisible Spirit
As I’ve studied the Word of God I found something quite intriguing and fascinating. It only takes a couple of verses to open up a whole plethora of revelation into Yahweh’s being. While we are made in His image, the Bible tells us God is INVISIBLE.
- John 4:24 tells us “[The] God is Spirit and they that worship Him must worship in Spirit and Truth.”
- 2 Cor 3:17 confirms, “Now Yahweh is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of Yahweh is, there is liberty.”
- Col 1:15 reveals to us, “He [Yeshua] is the image of the invisible God.”
The paramount Christian doctrine vs. any other is that Yeshua came in the flesh and that He is God. Whether you believe He is a second, eternal ‘Person’ of a triune Godhead or that He is The Almighty God Himself, we are going to look at the phenomenon called ‘FORM’ and apply it to the entirety of Scripture.
What are the couple of verses I speak of? Philippians 2:6-7. Let’s read them here:
- Phil 2:6-7 “who, although He [Yeshua] existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, But made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.”
The Greek word for ‘form’ here is ‘morphe’. If we were to look up the definition in English it means “Change smoothly from one image to another.” G3444 is defined as form, shape, outward appearance; properly, form (outward expression) that embodies essential (inner) substance so that the form is in complete harmony with the inner essence.”
We’re going to begin this study by observing the many times Yahweh took on various forms in the Old Testament (Part 1). Then, we will observe the forms of the glorified Yeshua in the New Testament (Part 2) – this is just AWESOME.
In The Beginning
Gen 2:7 states, “Then the LORD God [Yahweh Elohim] formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.”
If we cross-reference this with Job 33:4 “The Spirit of God [El] has made me, And the breath of the Almighty gives me life”, how is that possible unless God had a way to pick up the dust of the earth to form man? Likewise, God formed every beast of the field and every bird (Gen 2:19).
Have you ever thought about whether or not Adam and Eve ever saw God, or did they just hear His voice? In Gen 3:8, after their fall, we read “They heard the sound of Yahweh Elohim [the LORD God] walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of Yahweh Elohim among the trees of the garden.”
We know Satan exists and he must be invisible, too; for it was the ‘beast of the field’ (the serpent) that had been made by God (Gen 2:19) that spoke to Eve (Gen 3:1). Revelation 12:9 and 20:12 make it clear that Satan is ‘the serpent of old’. Considering demons are invisible, yet possess animals (Mark 5:12) and people (Luke 8:30), Satan must have embodied the created serpent at that time.
The Angel of the LORD (Yahweh)
In Gen 16 Hagar, after conceiving and running away from Sarah, was visited by the Angel of Yahweh. In vs. 16 we read, “Then she called the name of Yahweh who spoke to her, ‘You are the God [El] who sees’; for she said, 'Have I even remained alive here after seeing Him?"
Let’s go now to Abraham’s encounter with Yahweh on Mount Moriah as he raised the knife to slay Isaac as the burnt offering. In Gen 22:11-12 we read, "But the Angel of Yahweh called to him from heaven and said, ‘Abraham, Abraham!’ And he said, ‘Here I am.’ 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.’” Was Abraham sacrificing Isaac to an angel or Yahweh? Here, we can see Yahweh also manifests as ‘the Angel of Yahweh’.
In Exodus 3:2 “The Angel of Yahweh appeared to him [Moses] in a blazing fire from the midst of a bush.” It’s important to note what is said to Moses in vs 5 (you’ll see later): “Do not come near here; remove your sandals from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground." The Angel of Yahweh then stated, “I AM the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.’ Then Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at God.” In vs. 14 Moses receives His NAME: “God said to Moses, ‘I AM WHO I AM’; and He said, ‘Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’” In Hebrew, ‘I AM’ is hayah meaning ‘I Come’; in Greek it is ‘Ego Eimi’.
The story of Balaam and his donkey is kind of humorous, as found in Numbers 22:22-38. Balaam could not see the Angel of Yahweh, but his donkey certainly could. Yahweh ‘opened the eyes’ of Balaam to see His Angel and said to him, “Go with the men, but you shall speak only the word which I tell you.” Balaam told Balak in vs. 38, “The word that God puts in my mouth, that I shall speak.”
The Angel of Yahweh came to visit Gideon in Judges 6:11-24. In vs. 16-18 we read, “But Yahweh said to him, ‘Surely I will be with you, and you shall defeat Midian as one man.’ So Gideon said to Him, ‘If now I have found favor in Your sight, then show me a sign that it is You who speak with me.’” Gideon asked Him to remain until he returned, which He did. 22-24 tell us, “When Gideon saw that He was the Angel of Yahweh, he said, ‘Alas, O Yahweh Elohim! For now I have seen the Angel of Yahweh face to face.’ Yahweh said to him, ‘Peace to you, do not fear; you shall not die.’ Then Gideon built an altar there to Yahweh and named it Yahweh is Peace. To this day it is still in Ophrah of the Abiezrites.”
In Genesis 14 we read about the king of Salem, Melchizedek. Considering Heb 7:3 tells us he was “Without father, without mother, without genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but made like the Son of God, he remains a priest perpetually”, He was either Yeshua in the flesh back then, or he’s simply a king and priest that, because he was a Gentile, had no record of his birth or genealogy, nor was there any record of his death. Only God Himself has no beginning or ending of days.
Gen 18:1-3 tells us “Now Yahweh appeared to him [Abraham] by the oaks of Mamre, while he was sitting at the tent door in the heat of the day. When 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, and said, ‘My Adonay, if now I have found favor in Your sight, please do not pass Your servant by.” Those three men ate with Abraham and Sarah, and vs. 22 states, “The men turned away and went toward Sodom, but Abraham remained standing before Yahweh.”
Remember when a man wrestled with Jacob all night in Gen 32:24-31? In vs 28, that man told Jacob, “Your name shall no longer be Jacob, but Israel; for you have striven [8280 sarah – to persist, exert oneself, persevere] with God and with men and have prevailed.” Vs. 29 should be observed because when Jacob asked His name, it was not told to him. “So Jacob named the place Peniel, for he said, ‘I have seen God [Elohim] face to face, yet my life has been preserved.’" (30)
In Judges 13:3-23 the parents of Samson were visited by the Angel of Yahweh to tell them they would bear a son. Vs. 6 “Then the woman went to her husband and told him, ‘A man of God came to me. He looked like an Angel of Yahweh, very awesome. I didn’t ask him where he came from, and he didn’t tell me His name.” In vs.17-18: “Manoah said to the Angel of Yahweh, ‘What is your name, so that when your words come to pass, we may honor you?’ But the Angel of Yahweh said to him, ‘Why do you ask my name, seeing it is Wonderful?” Vs 21-23 sum up the story: “Now the Angel of Yahweh did not appear to Manoah or his wife again. Then Manoah knew that He was the Angel of Yahweh. So Manoah said to his wife, ‘We will surely die, for we have seen God.’ But his wife said to him, ‘If Yahweh had desired to kill us, He would not have accepted a burnt offering and a grain offering from our hands, nor would He have shown us all these things, nor would He have let us hear things like this at this time.”
Let’s look at Joshua’s experience in Josh 5:13-15 “Now it came about when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, a man was standing opposite him with his sword drawn in his hand, and Joshua went to him and said to him, ‘Are you for us or for our adversaries?’ He said, ‘No; rather I indeed come now as captain of the host of Yahweh.’ And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and bowed down, and said to him, ‘What has my Adonay to say to his servant? The captain of Yahweh’s host said to Joshua, ‘Remove your sandals from your feet, for the place where you are standing is holy.’ And Joshua did so.” Where have we heard these words before? Surely, Exodus 3:5.
Spirit Man, Clouds and Fire
We all remember the fabulous account of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego found in Daniel 3. Surely, while these men were bound and cast into the fiery furnace, in vs. 25 the king said, “Look! I see four men loosed and walking about in the midst of the fire without harm, and the appearance of the fourth is like a son [1247 bar - a divine being] of the gods [426 – elah]!” Now, some think the king would have proclaimed the fourth man looked like “the Son [1121 - ben] of God [430 - Elohim]”, but Nebuchadnezzar was a pagan.
In Num 14:14 we see another manifestation of God: “They have heard that You, O Yahweh, are in the midst of this people, for You, O Yahweh, are seen eye to eye, while Your cloud stands over them; and You go before them in a pillar of cloud by day and in a pillar of fire by night.”
Ex 31:18 tells us “When He had finished speaking with him upon Mount Sinai, He gave Moses the two tablets of the testimony, tablets of stone, written by the finger of God.” Well, Moses, in his anger, smashed that first set of commandments so God wrote a second set in chapter 33.
A couple of chapters later (Ex 33:20) God told Moses, "You cannot see My face, for no man can see Me and live! Behold, there is a place by Me, and you shall stand there on the rock; and it will come about, while My glory is passing by, that I will put you in the cleft of the rock and cover you with My hand until I have passed by. Then I will take My hand away and you shall see My back, but My face shall not be seen.”
Dan 5:5 tells us “Suddenly the fingers of a man's hand emerged and began writing opposite the lampstand on the plaster of the wall of the king's palace, and the king saw the back of the hand that did the writing.” Daniel tells Belshazzar in vs. 23-24 “But the God in whose hand are your life-breath and all your ways, you have not glorified. Then the hand was sent from Him and this inscription was written out.” Truly, the writing on the wall meant the king’s judgment.
In addition to these examples, The Old Testament states that God has: eyes (Am 9:8); ears (Isa 5:9; 59:1; Jam 5:4); nose (Job 4:9; Isa 65:5); mouth (Isa 1:20; Mic 4:4; Mat 4:4; Job 40:9); voice (Ex 19:19); face (Gen 19:13; 1 Sam 26:20); arms and hands (Job 40:9; Ps 44:3; 77:15; 89:10, 21; 136:12; Jer 21:5); finger (Ex 8:19; 31:18; Deut 9:10; Luke 11:20); feet (Nah 1:3; Zech 14:4; Rev 1:15-16) and inward parts (Isa 16:11).
Futuristic - Isaiah's Vision
Isa 6:1 tells us of a vision - it is Adonay sitting on the throne, surrounded by seraphim (six-winged Angels) and in vs. 3 they are singing, “Holy, Holy, Holy is Yahweh of Hosts” Isaiah said in vs. 5, “my eyes have seen the King, Yahweh of hosts.”
The sequel to this hub is even more fascinating because I’m going to show you the ‘morphing’ of God in the glorified Jesus (Yeshua) straight from the scriptures in The Manifestation of GOD - New Testament (click on the link and it will take you there)!
The Meaning of The Name YHWH
More by Judah's Daugher on The Image of God
- God: Let Us Make Man in Our Image?
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- Soul, Spirit, Mind and Heart
Man is fearfully and wonderfully made in God’s image! God has a soul, spirit, mind and heart, just like we do! Only our Creator can powerfully minister to each separately and yet bring wholeness within us because of Jesus Christ.
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