Is Jesus in the Old Testament?

Part 1: In the Beginning... Jesus
Part 2: Jesus in Genesis
Part 3: Jesus in Judges
Part 4: Jesus in Zechariah
Part 5: Jesus in Jerusalem
Part 6: Jesus and Satan

Now what of physical manifestations? Did Jesus ever appear in the flesh in the Old Testament? Yes, He did! We will not explore every occurrence of this, but let’s consider a few. Keep in mind that, “No man hath seen God at any time, the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.” John 1:18 Therefore any situation in the Old Testament in which people interact with God, it is not the Father but of Jesus pre-incarnate who “declares” Him. Also note that you will often read about “an angel of God” which is not to be confused with “The Angel of God” and the latter is our beloved Christ. With that, take a fresh look at the following Scriptures:

Genesis 18
“And the Lord appeared unto him in the plains of Mamre: and he sat in the tent door in the heat of the day;
2 And he lift up his eyes and looked, and, lo, three men stood by him: and when he saw them, he ran to meet them from the tent door, and bowed himself toward the ground,
3 And said, My Lord, if now I have found favour in thy sight, pass not away, I pray thee, from thy servant:
4 Let a little water, I pray you, be fetched, and wash your feet, and rest yourselves under the tree:
5 And I will fetch a morsel of bread, and comfort ye your hearts; after that ye shall pass on: for therefore are ye come to your servant. And they said, So do, as thou hast said.”

Here we have Jesus appearing in the flesh with 2 angels, perhaps Gabrielle and Michael (we don’t know). But the Scripture is plain that this IS the Lord, and He is physical enough eat, drink, and have His feet washed. –is this hospitality not what Jesus offered His disciples the night of His betrayal?

“Is any thing too hard for the Lord? At the time appointed I will return unto thee, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son.
15 Then Sarah denied, saying, I laughed not; for she was afraid. And he said, Nay; but thou didst laugh.
16 And the men rose up from thence, and looked toward Sodom: and Abraham went with them to bring them on the way.
17 And the Lord said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do;
18 Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him?
19 For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment; that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him.
20 And the Lord said, Because the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grievous;
21 I will go down now, and see whether they have done altogether according to the cry of it, which is come unto me; and if not, I will know.
22 And the men turned their faces from thence, and went toward Sodom: but Abraham stood yet before the Lord.
23 And Abraham drew near, and said, Wilt thou also destroy the righteous with the wicked?
24 Peradventure there be fifty righteous within the city: wilt thou also destroy and not spare the place for the fifty righteous that are therein?
25 That be far from thee to do after this manner, to slay the righteous with the wicked: and that the righteous should be as the wicked, that be far from thee: Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?
26 And the Lord said, If I find in Sodom fifty righteous within the city, then I will spare all the place for their sakes.
27 And Abraham answered and said, Behold now, I have taken upon me to speak unto the Lord, which am but dust and ashes:
28 Peradventure there shall lack five of the fifty righteous: wilt thou destroy all the city for lack of five? And he said, If I find there forty and five, I will not destroy it.
29 And he spake unto him yet again, and said, Peradventure there shall be forty found there. And he said, I will not do it for forty's sake.
30 And he said unto him, Oh let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak: Peradventure there shall thirty be found there. And he said, I will not do it, if I find thirty there.
31 And he said, Behold now, I have taken upon me to speak unto the Lord: Peradventure there shall be twenty found there. And he said, I will not destroy it for twenty's sake.
32 And he said, Oh let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak yet but this once: Peradventure ten shall be found there. And he said, I will not destroy it for ten's sake.
33 And the Lord went his way, as soon as he had left communing with Abraham: and Abraham returned unto his place.”

This passage gives us another prophecy of Christ when He Himself speaks of all nations being blessed through Abraham (verse 18), in reference to the blessing of Christ to all nations. We see the attentive nature of God not to pronounce judgment from afar but to hear the cries of the oppressed and go see in person the situation of these cities of the plain. Furthermore we see God’s mercy in His willingness to spare an entire wicked city if so much as 10 righteous persons are found there. We know later on that there is but one man, Lot, who is counted righteous among the cities and spared the judgment of God.

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