No Looking Back!

Gotta keep moving forward no time for that relapse
Full steam ahead, just like the amtrak
Never mind your former manner of life
You rep'n the King Jesus, call Him El Shaddai
Prayer, Concentration, Scripture Memorization
Essentials of this faith, you need it if you gonna make it
A true saint is gonna persevere dog lets face it
1 Corinth 5.17 the new creation

You gotta walk a path thats narrow and less traveled
If you want a faith hard as a rock, sharp as a arrow
Reverting to your old ways only gonna bring trouble
Your spirit be on bed-rock like barney rubble

Death, burial, resurrection and His ascension
Eternally the God-Man living for intercession
2 Tim 2.15 - Stay alert
1 Thess 5.17 - Cause prayer works
Joshua 1.8 - Thats meditation
Stay focused on the Lamb that brought about your expiation.

Quick Verse on Christ as Priest

This verse was inspired by my readings in the book of Hebrews. Its far from comprehensive, but still true to the text. I pray your blessed!

It's the most critical position that’s written in Jewish history
He represents the atonement of mans inequity
Responsible for spilling blood upon the mercy seat
He's Christ Jesus, the fulfillment of the High Priest

The levitical priesthood of Aaron was insufficient
Inadequate to fulfill the fullness of God's intentions
The Old Testament: Exodus, Numbers, Leviticus
The sacrificial system, from foreshadow to fruition

He satisfied all the requirement in Hebrews five
Christ was a man, thus an acceptable sacrifice
But don't stop there homie, nah don't cease
He's not only the perfect sacrifice, He's the priest


There’s so much more that I couldn't mention
But praise God He's ever living to make intersession.


Whats the Cause?

In my class yesterday, I was asked to respond to this question

"Are media such as music, movies, and video games causing children to be more violent?"

Usually when one thinks of a question such as this we tend to jump right on the wagon and say "YES!!!". We like to blame shift like Adam and Eve did in the garden of Eden. But lets think about this a bit more. Is the assumption that media can cause our children to be more violent true? I would have to say yes. But before we "carpet bomb" the media, I think it would be wise to first consider a few factors in our children's lives. 

1. Our children are not born "good people". They are born sinners (Psalm 51.5, 58.3, Ecc 9.3, Jer 17.9, Gen 6.5, 8.21). They are born with a bent/inclination to lie, cheat and do evil. That's just the plane old biblical truth!!! Thus the desire to do "bad things" comes natural. TV may enhance the desire, but its not responsible for its birth. Sin is!

2. Our generation promotes such violence by endorsement. The more we watch and give ratings to violent and indecent television, the more exposure they will have.Without ratings, they get no endorsement, and without endorsements, they get no airtime. Therefore, we can partly blame ourselves for the airwave inundation of violence on our television. Just like the old slogan, "sex sells", I guess violence does too.

3. What ever happened to parenting? Why are we so quick to mimic Adam and Eve in blaming another for our faults? We plop our children down in front of the TV and expect them to be good people!? However, much of tv these days is anything but "good". When they rise from the tv wanting to hit people, we blame the networks for showing that kind of violence. 
What happened to mentoring our children? Spending time with them, teaching them godly principles, life skills and the gospel? Parents would be amazed at how much a child can learn at a young age. If we would but parent them, we would see a world of difference.

Not only that, but it is the mandate of God to raise up and disciple our children (Deut 6.6-7, Psalm 78.1-7, Eph 6.4, Titus 2.2-8)

So, in reference to the aforementioned question, we can probably give a hearty yes. However, lets not get carried away. The factors are real and the effects are felt. Its not all the medias fault. I think its safe to say that the cause of all evil is sin! So how about we do battle against sin in living godly lives and raising our children in a godly fashion.

If a house has severely cracked walls that seemed to come out of nowhere, no amount of putty or new sheetrock can fix the issue with a guarantee that the cracks wont return. That’s because the issue is not with the walls, but with the foundation of the house. The more the foundation shifts, the more cracks you will see in the walls. So instead of putting bandages on the walls, how about we fix the foundation! 
Lets not pray for our children to behave better or act a certain way. Lets pray that God would do a work in them, saving them! The behavior will change with the renewing of their heart and mind. Discipline may be necessary from time to time, but a true converted soul will seek to please God and thus please you as the parent.

What are your thoughts?

Jesus Christ is better!

Jesus Christ is better!!!

The book of Hebrews was written to a small group of Jewish Christians who were undergoing persecution at the hands of the local authorities. Although many of them under went this persecution with joy, many of them were entertaining the thought of returning to Judaism. You see, to be a Jew, at this time and in this place, resulted in an easier way of life. In Italy, especially near Rome, Christians were the very target of persecution, much more than their Jewish counterparts. Homes were being repossessed, men and women were imprisoned and overall harsh treatment was the daily reality of these Jewish believers. To make matters worse things were just getting started, for Nero was soon to ascend to the throne. Nero’s reign of terror on the followers of Christ was likely unparalleled to any in history.

 So what within the bounds of logic would keep them from returning to Judaism? What would keep one loyal to Christ during these perilous times? Why not go back to Judaism? It just makes things easier, doesn't it? Why remain a Christian?

Because of the reality that Jesus Christ is better!!! He is quite simply the best!

Hebrews Chapter one spells out some of the “anatomy” of Christ and His supremacy. And after evaluating this text, you will undoubtedly come to the same conclusion. Hebrews 1.1-3 describe Christ as the Epitome of the Prophets, Deity in bodily form, The greatest high priest and the King of kings.

Hebrews 1.1-3 Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world. He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, “

What’s the implication of this text? Why can’t the Jewish believers go back? Why can’t we go back?

Because God has spoken to us, for Christ is the epitome of the prophet, and we know we have undoubtedly heard His word. Whether it be through a sermon preached in a church service you may have attended or that scripture that was read at the funeral service you went to last year. Whether it was from the testimony of a friend or the few words you heard from the TV preacher before you changed the channel. If you have heard the famously misused bible verse of John 3:16, you have heard His word and most likely have access to His word. In fact it’s highly probable that you have a dusty Bible somewhere in your home right now! Your excuses are none! You have heard Him! For you can only ignore that which you consciously know is there!

He is the sovereign God who knows all things, ordains all things and sustains all things, and who can sustain us in our current circumstances. We have no reason to believe that our circumstances are too much for us to bear. For what does His word say? “No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and He will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.” 1 Corinthians 10.13

He is the high priest whose sacrifice of himself is the only thing that can keep us from hell’s gates, and if he sacrificed all earthly comforts for us, how dare we replace Him with ours.

He is the almighty King of kings and Lord of lords who is reigning from on high! (To rebel against the King is not only treason, but warrants the Kings eternal punishment)

To go back to our former manner of life is simply to serve the finite God of our own desires. And that false god grants us no assurance, give us no safety and has no power.

If you are trusting in your self for some kind of truth! Remember Gods Word is Truth!
If you claim to have no God, you are your own God.
If you think your good works will outweigh your bad and thus give you entrance to the kingdom, your method of atonement is insufficient.
And if you’re seated on the throne of your own heart I beg you, urge you, implore you to repent of your sins, trust God and follow Christ!!!

(See the full sermon in the sermon link, Because of the supremacy of Christ!)
Be sure to check out the blog of Pastor Matthew Fletcher and all the sermons of Webster Bible Church

It was the Lord

"God didn't know that was going to happen!"
"God knew, but couldn't do anything about it."
"God couldn't have prevented that from happening."
"It was the devil!"

These are common answers to real life questions. When tragedy strikes or when disaster takes place, what part does God play in it all? Is He there? Does He care?

The answer is yes! He is both there and most certainly does care. Many people however would beg to differ.

The biblical definition of God doesn't allow for the answers given at the top of this page. The bible tells us that God is Holy (Rev 4.8), Righteous (Psalm 89.14; 2 Timothy 4.8), Love (1 John 4.8), All knowing (1 John 3.20), Sovereign (Psalm 115.3), etc...

While many acknowledge the fact that the bible teaches these things about God, they attempt use them to discredit the existence of the biblical God.

The argument goes something like this...
1. The biblical God is Loving
2. The biblical God is good
3. The biblical God is all knowing
4. The biblical God is all-powerful
Yet evil exists
5. Thus, the biblical God does not exist

Does this argument carry any weight? Does the bible lend defense for the biblical God in light of this ill-informed line of thinking?
Of course it does.
The bible makes it clear that the biblical God is all the things listed above. And when one takes a closer look, we see that the sovereignty of God is all consuming.

        He is sovereign over:      Over the nations: Dan 4.34-35, Psalm 47.7-9
                        Over all of nature: Ps 135:6-7; Mt 5:45; 6:25-30      
                                                Over angels & Satan: Ps 103:20-21; Job 1:12
                                                Over animals: Ps 104:21-30; 1 Ki 17:4-6
                                                Over human beings: 1 Sam 2:6-7; Gal 1:15-16
Over free acts of men: Acts 2.22-23; 4.27
Over the sinful yet free acts of men and Satan:
2 Sam 24:1; 1 Chr 21:1; Gen 45:5; 50:20
Over the entire universe: Ps 103:19; Rom 8:28;     Eph 1:11

So, in light of God’s sovereignty there are many reasons that God allows and even wills that evil exist. Yes, that’s right, God wills that evil exist. (Before you stone me, keep reading)

We don’t need to change the biblical God or the bible in order to come up with answers to questions about evil. Lets simply allow the Bible to speak.

Does God will and allow evil to exist? Yes!

Open your bible, read these verses and let the bible speak for its self:

Isaiah 45.5-7 - 5 I am the Lord, and there is no other, besides me there is no God; I equip you, though you do not know me, that people may know, from the rising of the sun and from the west, that there is none besides me; I am the Lord, and there is no other. I form light and create darkness, I make well-being and create calamity, I am the Lord, who does all these things."

Duet 32.39, 2 Kings 17.25, Proverbs 16.4, Exodus 4.11, Psalm 105.16, Lam 3.37-38, Amos 3.6

I think its safe to say that God wills sin to exist. 

Now the question is why. Why does God will evil to exist?

Here are eight good biblical reasons for God willing evil to exist.

1. Heb 12.4-11 Discipline
2. Psalm 119.71 Seek the Lord
3. John 9.1-3 Works of God being displayed
4. Rom 5.3 To exercise perseverance     
5. 2 Cor 1.3-6 So we can comfort others
6. 1 Pet 1.6-7, Job 13.15 To show the truth of our belief
7. Acts 8.1, Phil 1.12-14 To bring the gospel others
8. Rom 8.17 To share in the suffering of Christ

So before we try to change God or change the Bible, lets see if there are good biblical reasons for the hard questions we face on daily basis. This doesn’t answer every question about evil, such as where evil came from, however it does give us right perspective on why God would allow such “evil” things to happen to man in the first place.

At the end of the day, all things are done for the benefit of those who love Him and to glorify the Lord. Let us take comfort in that!

For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the LORD. - Isaiah 55.8

Whats the importance of doctrine?

Recently I had a young girl come to my office an ask me a very crucial question. "Why is doctrine important?"As I sat back in my chair my mind went in a million different directions.  I responded by saying "Doctrine is the most important aspect of your Christian walk. Essential doctrines are the foundation of our faith. With out doctrine our salvation is highly questionable and our lifestyles may not be pleasing to the Lord." We continued to converse for a while and this is the gist of what I said to her

 I hope this helps.

First we must understand that doctrine is simply another word for teachings. Teachings are everywhere in scripture. You can barley mention anything about Jesus without making a doctrinal statement. If you say Jesus was a man, you've just made a significant doctrinal statement. If you say that Jesus was a prophet, you've just made a significant doctrinal statement. Doctrine is inescapable.

When most people hear the word "Doctrine" they think of some abstract and lofty idea that doesn't pertain to practical human life. O how ignorant of a thought that truly is!

To put it bluntly, we have no basis for practical living without doctrine! Its that important.

Here are two practical reasons for the importance of doctrine.

1. Without doctrine your salvation hangs in the balance: Our salvation is made sure upon what we believe. If we say we believe the Gospel is true, than we have believed and put our trust in particular doctrines. The atonement, The Humanity of Christ, The Deity of Christ, The Bodily Resurrection of Christ, The Authority of Scripture... The list goes on! What you believe totally impacts the validity of your salvation; and without doctrine you cant know what you believe and thus never truly know whether or not you are saved.

If you don't believe in the trinity, how can you say your a Christian? If the god you serve is not the God revealed in scripture, your serving a god who does not exist, aka and idol.
This does not mean that one must have a comprehensive understanding of all details concerning the indispensable doctrines of Christianity upon the accepted presentation of the Gospel, but rather must upon growth in Christ come to comply with all preeminent doctrines as they are encountered. Denials of these truths come to prove the inauthenticity of the initial acceptance of the gospel, thus ones salvation must be brought into question. Doctrine is very very important.

2. Without doctrine you cant know how to live: The teachings of the bible carry with them biblical principles. These principles are to shape a Christians lifestyle into one that is honoring to God. However, without doctrine, we cant know what a God honoring lifestyle looks like.

For example, how is a man supposed to love his wife? Should he treat her harshly for lack of obedience? Should he treat her as a personal slave? Should he commit adultery because she has gained a few extra pounds?

I submit to you that there are biblical doctrines that speak to such questions.
"The Vicarious Atonement of Christ" speaks to this very issue.

The Apostle Paul states "Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor,without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church, because we are members of his body.“Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.”This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church. However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband."  Ephesians 5.25-33

Do you see how the doctrine gave substance to the situation? This transfer of truth to practicality is true of all biblical doctrines.

Another example would be the "abstract" doctrine of God's omnipresence. What practical implications could that possibly bring forth? Well, Omnipresence is the doctrine that God is everywhere present. That implies that he sees all that you do, and have ever done for that matter. You can hide none of your sinfulness from the eyes of the Lord. In fact, He saw what you did last night!

Do you see how understanding God's omnipresence may change the way you behave when no earthly eyes are watching? Understanding this doctrine can bring a sense of conviction when one sins, a sense of comfort when tragedy strikes (knowing that God is near), a sense of peace when in the middle of a storm. God is always with you!

Here is a wonderful quote to consider and think through: "God is over all things, under all things; outside all; within but not enclosed; without but not excluded; above but not raised up; below but not depressed; wholly above, presiding; wholly beneath, sustaining; wholly within, filling" -Hildebert of Lavardin

Doctrine is very important!

Only the Gospel can!

What can gun control laws do when a heart is bent on committing evil acts?
What can laws do to prevent the premeditated determination of an evil action?

The answer is nothing! The laws of any country can and are broken daily. And though they may prevent some people from committing heinous crimes, they ultimately are useless in hindering the  determined sinful mind.

The united states has seen its fare share of massacres:

Oct. 16, 1991
23 dead, 20 wounded: Killeen, Texas
George Jo Hennard, 35, crashes his pickup truck in­to a Luby’s cafet­er­ia crowded with lunch­time pat­rons and be­gins fir­ing in­dis­crim­in­ately with a semi­auto­mat­ic pis­tol, killing 22 people. Hennard is later found dead of a gun­shot wound in a res­taur­ant re­stroom.

April 20, 1999
13 killed, 24 injured: Columbine, Colo.
Eric Har­ris and Dylan Kle­bold, stu­dents at Columbine High, open fire at the school, killing a dozen stu­dents and a teach­er and caus­ing in­jury to two dozen oth­ers be­fore tak­ing their own lives.

April 16, 2007
32 killed, 17 injured: Blacksburg, Va.
Seung-hui Cho, a 23-year-old Vir­gin­ia Tech seni­or, opens fire on cam­pus, killing 32 people in a dorm and an aca­dem­ic build­ing in at­tacks more than two hours apart. Cho takes his life after the second in­cid­ent.

April 3, 2009
13 killed, 4 injured: Binghamton, N.Y.
Jiverly Voong, 41, shoots and kills 13 people and ser­i­ously wounds four oth­ers be­fore ap­par­ently com­mit­ting sui­cide at the Amer­ic­an Civic Assn., an im­mig­ra­tion ser­vices cen­ter, in Bing­hamton, N.Y.

Nov. 5, 2009
13 killed, 32 injured: Ft. Hood, Texas
Maj. Nid­al Ma­lik Has­an, an Army psy­chi­at­rist, al­legedly shoots and kills 13 people and in­jures 32 oth­ers in a ram­page at Ft. Hood, where he is based. Au­thor­it­ies al­lege that Has­an was ex­chan­ging emails with Muslim ex­trem­ists in­clud­ing Amer­ic­an-born rad­ic­al An­war Aw­laki.

July 20, 2012
12 killed, 58 injured: Aurora, Colo.
James Holmes, 24, is taken in­to cus­tody in the park­ing lot out­side the Cen­tury 16 movie theat­er after a post-mid­night at­tack in Au­rora, Colo. Holmes al­legedly entered the theat­er through an exit door about half an hour in­to the loc­al premiere of “The Dark Knight Rises.” He faces charges of of killing 12 people and in­jur­ing 58 oth­ers.

Dec. 14, 2012
Multiple fatalities: Newtown, Conn.
De­vel­op­ing story: A shoot­ing at a sub­urb­an Con­necti­c­ut ele­ment­ary school has res­ul­ted in “mul­tiple fatal­it­ies,” ac­cord­ing to New­town, Conn., May­or Mark D. Boughton. Boughton told re­port­ers that those killed in the morn­ing as­sault in­cluded the shoot­er. The As­so­ci­ated Press, cit­ing a source close to the in­vest­ig­a­tion, has re­por­ted 27 dead, 18 of them chil­dren.

President Obama did all that he could do in saying that "meaningful action" would be taken. However I ask  Mr President and all law makers everywhere, what can you really do? No Law can prevent a determined evil heart. Take away the guns, they will use knives, cars, plans, fire, water, whatever it takes!!!
So you may ask, what can? What can help? 
The saving grace of God can! The acceptance of the revelation of Christ can change the determined sinful heart into a heart that yearns for righteousness. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is the good news of what God has done, not only to save sinners from eternal damnation in hell, but good news about what God is doing in the sinner presently. The Lord is in the business of changing the disposition of the heart. The power of the Gospel can! The power of the Gospel can!!!

The Analysis

I have had a number of young people come to me the past few years with concerns as to whether or not they are truly saved. Some of them truly seemed to be worked up about the issue while others didn't seem to take it to serious at all. I'd like to think, although its no guarantee, that those who are seemingly bent up over this issue are likely positionally redeemed, yet emotionally confused.

As believers we have a tendency to do 1 of 2 things.

1) We make salvation way too hard.
2) We make salvation way too easy.

I'd like to allow scripture to speak to this issue. One book in particular. The wonderful book of 1 John. As I read through this wonderful work, I have found 10 tellers as to what a believer looks like. I encourage all who may be wrestling with this issue to honestly compare themselves with this list. And let the outcome be that as it may. Just be sure to take the appropriate action after your assessment is complete.

1. Do you walk in light? Both moral light and intellectual light. (1 John 1.6-7)
2. Do you admit to being a sinner? (1 John 1.8 - 2.8)
3. Do you keep the commandments of the Lord Jesus? (1 John 2.3-5)
4. Do you love fellow believers? (1 John 2.9-11)
5. Do you love the sinful things of this world? (1 John 2.15-17)
6. Have you left the faith and denied Christ? (1 John 2.18-23)
7. Do you make a habit of committing various sins? (1 John 3.4-10)
8. Do you believe that Jesus is 100% man? (1 John 4.2-3)
9. Are you in agreement with the apostles in matters of doctrine or do you deny parts of scripture?            (1 John 4.4-6)
10. Do you believe that Jesus is 100% God? (1 John 4.13-15)

If you can answer these questions with a genuine heart, you will have a good beat on your spiritual pulse (or lack there of). To be sure these questions could be taken at an even more in-depth level, however I think this is a good starting point. Be honest with them and read the book of 1 John. Allow the text give you a true analysis of your spiritual condition. Not your emotions. And if the Lord reveals an unsaved heart, repent and follow Jesus. If the Lord reveals a redeemed heart, press on in producing fruit in keeping with repentance!


"I kept you from sinning against Me"

As I was reading through my devotionals tonight I came across a very interesting text. In Genesis 20 we have King Abimelech, who has just recently taken Abraham’s wife, Sarah, to be his own wife. He did so thinking that Abraham and Sarah was brother and sister, for Abraham and Sarah told partial truth about their relationship. They did so because Abraham thought that there was no fear of God in the King’s land and that the king would kill him just to have the chance to marry Sarah, for she was beautiful.
God tells King Abimelech in a dream that Abraham and Sarah are really husband and wife. Abimelech, fearing the Lord, pleaded his case that he took Sarah innocently not knowing she was a married woman. The Lord responds by telling the King that He knows that he acted in the “integrity” of his heart in taking her to be his wife. 

Now here comes the interesting part. God tells the King “Yes, I know that you have done this in the integrity of your heart, and it was I who kept you from sinning against me. Therefore I did not let you touch her.” Gen 20.6

This is interesting on many levels, but here are the first two I though of.

  1. God’s sovereignty is so incomprehensible that we don’t even perceive Him restraining us from sin.
  2. God’s providence is so stealthy that we feel as if our decisions are independent of God, yet verses like this show us that they are simply a part of His divine plan.

Read the passage and let God's Word seep into your pours. Its truly amazing to learn about our God!

Jude 24 "Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of His glory with great joy, to the only God, our savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever more. Amen."

The angel of the Lord

As I was reading through my devotional this morning, I came across an awesome truth. The doctrine of the pre-incarnate Christ in the Old Testament.

Many people have wondered what Christ was doing during Old Testament times. The assumption is that the OT was the Fathers" time to shine" and that the New Testament was for the Son. Well, that isn't necessarily true.

The answer is found in the scriptures themselves.

The prime example of Jesus in the OT in my opinion is the Isaiah 6 vision of the Lord. All to often people make the assumption that the glory emanating from the throne that Isaiah saw was the glory of the Father alone. However the testimony of scripture tells us a different story. Its easy to assume that this magnificent vision is of the Father alone, however when you use scripture to interpret scripture, you will come to the conclusion that the glory emanating from the throne was the glory of Christ (John 12.39-41) and the one whom Isaiah heard speaking to him was the Holy Spirit (Acts 28.25-27). To be sure Father was present at this wondrous occasion, however he would not have been seen for "no one has ever seen God [the Father]; the only God, who is at the Father's side, he has made him known." John 1.18.

But this isn't the only place where Christ shows up in the Old Testament. As I read Genesis 16 I came across these wonderful verses. 

"The angel of the Lord found her by a spring of water in the wilderness, the spring on the way to Shur. And he said, “Hagar, servant of Sarai, where have you come from and where are you going?” She said, “I am fleeing from my mistress Sarai.” The angel of the Lord said to her, “Return to your mistress and submit to her.” The angel of the Lord also said to her, “I will surely multiply your offspring so that they cannot be numbered for multitude.” And the angel of the Lord said to her,

“Behold, you are pregnant
    and shall bear a son.
You shall call his name Ishmael,[a]
    because the Lord has listened to your affliction.
 He shall be a wild donkey of a man,
    his hand against everyone
    and everyone's hand against him,
and he shall dwell over against all his kinsmen.”
So she called the name of the Lord who spoke to her, “You are a God of seeing,” for she said, “Truly here I have seen him who looks after me.” (Gen 16.7-13)
Notice, that she saw and spoke to God. This is called a Theophany.
 In light of John 1.18 she couldn't have seen the Father. And most would generally agree that the Holy Spirit is unseen (except for the baptism of Jesus). Thus we are left with one conclusion. Hagar saw the second person of the Trinity. God the Son, a.k.a. the Pre-incarnate Christ.
Just about every time we see the term "the angel of the Lord" in the OT, we can be certain that this was the Pre-Incarnate Christ. When it says "an angel of the Lord" its most likely referring to an angelic being (Seraphim, Cherubim)
Other texts to consider are: Exodus 3, Numbers 22.22-35, Joshua 5.13-15, Judges 6.11-40.
The list could go on and on. Isn't our God amazing! He 

The Essentials of The Faith

How common is it to hear from an evangelical pulpit that "We must be strong in the essentials of the faith." I have often heard this from various preachers and churches yet have very scarcely heard a detailed articulation of them. As I was preparing for my Wednesday night bible study group (Roc Solid), I felt it necessary to teach an overview of all that I could find that qualifyed as an essential of the Christian faith.

I defined these truths as "The doctrines that determine salvation." It's lists such as these that help debunk false Christianity. As you study further into this topic consider the teachings of Roman Catholics, Jehovah's Witnesses', Mormons', Oneness Pentecostals' and see if they line up with the Bibles definition of Christianity.

 I have placed a portion of the sheet here for your viewing. I pray it serves to edify and encourage you to learn more about the faith we profess.

Essentials of the Faith: the truths that determine salvation

(Essentials do not mean that one must have a comprehensive understanding of all details concerning the indispensable doctrines of Christianity upon the accepted presentation of the Gospel, but rather must upon growth in Christ come to comply with all preeminent doctrines as they are encountered. Denials of any one of these truths come to prove the inauthenticity of the initial acceptance of them, thus ones salvation must be brought into question.)

                       1.  Believe in the existence of God (Hebrews 11.6)
a.     In order to be Christian one must believe in the reality of God
b.     God is not a concept, but rather an essential reality

2. The Authority of scripture (The 66 canonical authoritative books      
                  (2 Tim 3.16; 2 Peter 1.20-21; Psalm 1{Wicked/Blessed man categories})
a.     In order to be Christian one must believe in the authority of scripture
b.     If you don’t, you are not his true disciple per (John 8.31/2 John 9)
c.      If one does not believe in God’s Word, how will they believe in the gospel message, which is derived from His Word?

            3. Monotheism (Deut 6.4; Isaiah 45.5)
a.     The Bible teaches that there is only one God
b.     If you believe in more than one God you are denying the true God (Joshua 24.14-24)

4. The Triunity of God (Isaiah 6.9-10 + Acts 28.25-28/John 12.39-41; Matt 28.19)
a.     That the one God exists as three persons, and all three actually exist simultaneously as the one being Yahweh.  (Father, Son, Holy Spirit)
b.     Belief in any other God is idolatry, for no other God exists. (Isa 44.6)
           5. Christ’s Deity (Col 2.9)
a.     That Christ was fully God, thus qualified to pay an eternal price for sin.
b.     A denial of Christ (One man with two natures) is a denial of God Luke 10.16; John 8.19, 14.6-7

           6. Christ’s Humanity (Phil 2.5-8)
a.     That Christ was fully man, thus qualifying him as a substitutionary sacrifice for mankind
b.     A denial of Christ (One man with two natures) is a denial of God Luke 10.16; John 8.19, 14.6-7

           7.Christ’s Virgin Birth (Matt 1.18-25)
a.     That Christ was not born with a sin nature, thus born sinless
b.     If Christ was born of the seed of man, He would have adopted a sin nature, thus disqualifying Him as both God and Savior (Rom 5.12-21)

           8.The Deity and Personality of the Holy Spirit 
           (Eph 4.30; 1Cor 12.9-11 = giver of divine gifts;       Isaiah     6.9/Acts 28.25-26 = spoke as God)
a.     That the Holy Spirit is fully God and a person
b.     Denial of this is a denial of the only God who exists, for God is Triune

            9. God Created the heavens and the earth (Genesis 1-2)
            a. One must believe that God is their maker and that they are accountable to Him as a child to
            their parents

           10. Human Depravity (Rom 5.12-21, 1 John 1.8-10)
a.     That mankind is sinful and needs a savior
b.     One must believe that he needs to be saved from something in order to be saved from it

11. The Atonement of Christ (Rom 3.23-26)
a.     That Christ paid the sin debt for all who will come to believe (John 3.16)
b.     One must believe that Christ paid their sin debt in order to partake in His atoning work

           12. The Resurrection Of Christ ( 1 Cor 15.1-34)
a.     That Christ died and rose from the dead bodily
b.     Apart from a bodily resurrection our faith is void (1 Cor 15.14-17)

           13. Salvation by Grace alone (Eph 2.1-10; Gal 5.4; Rom 4.5)
a.     Salvation is of the Lord; no amount of personal works can save you thus any attempt leaves the debt unpaid.

           14. Salvation through Faith in Christ Alone (Rom 3.28; Acts 4.11-12)
      a. Faith in any other being or thing is worthless to salvation

There are far more texts to support each essential, however this is not meant to be exhaustive by any means. May you be blessed in your reading.