Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered outside the gate.  Therefore, let us go forth to him outside the camp, bearing his reproach.  For we have no continuing city here, but we seek one to come.


Going to Jesus

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The lips of a priest should preserve knowledge. They should seek the law from his mouth, for he is the messenger of the Lord of hosts.

Malachi 2:7

In Malachi 2:7, we have an example of God referring to His priest as His “messenger”. The Hebrew word translated “messenger” in the above verse from Malachi is usually translated “angel”, for most of the time, that word refers to messengers from heaven, not human messengers. But as you can see, it can be applied to men, or to women as well, for that matter, if God ever chose to use a woman to bear His message for Him. I would go so far as to say that this word, “messenger”, could even be applied to an animal if God used that animal to communicate a message to someone, as He did in the case of Balaam and his donkey.

We find the same thing in the Greek language. The Greek word for “messenger” is used mostly in reference to angels, but it is also used in reference to human messengers, whether messengers sent by God or messengers sent by men. John the Baptist sent two messengers to Jesus. The Greek word can be translated either as “messengers” or “angels”, but we would never say that John sent two angels to Jesus because John’s messengers were human.

This brings us to what the King James Bible has in the second and third chapters of Revelation. Seven times, the King James translators miss the mark by having Jesus say that he was sending messages to the “angel” of such-and-such a congregation, when it is obvious that the messages were intended for the pastors of those congregations.

Jesus was not telling John to write letters to angels from heaven; he was telling him to write letters to fellow human servants of God. Jesus was God’s messenger for John, and John was God’s messenger to the seven pastors who were God’s messengers to the seven congregations. Read those seven messages from Jesus as they are intended to be read, that is, as messages to individual pastors, and they will take on a new and richer meaning, the meaning Jesus originally intended when he spoke them.

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