Manoah said to the angel of the Lord, "Allow us to detain you, and prepare a kid for you." The angel of the Lord said to Manoah, "If you detain me, I will not eat your food, but if you want to prepare a burnt offering, then offer it to the Lord." (For Manoah did not know that he was the angel of the Lord.) Then Manoah said to the angel of the Lord, "What is your name, so that we may honor you when your words come true?" But the angel of the Lord said to him, "Why do you ask my name? It is too wonderful." Judges 13:15-18 NRSV
I must confess that I have an absolute obsession with angels. But not the sweet cherubs on Valentine's. I am really fascinated by the angels of the Bible and whenever a scripture has an angel in it, I am very attentive to what it says about the angel.
I think that the purpose of angels is to point back to God - deliver God's message, carry out God's instructions and be God's instruments of life and/or death.
This angel won't give Manoah his name.
So not only do we not know Manoah's wife's name ("the woman") but we don't know the angel's name either.
According to the angel, his name is "too wonderful."
That is kind of like God to Moses when Moses asks for God's name. Knowing a person's name can be a way of holding power over the other person. God tells Moses that God's name is "I Am Who I Am" (YHWH). This angel of the Lord tells Manoah doesn't give out his name either. Perhaps his name too wonderful to say or to think about. Or maybe too wonderful for a mere human to know.
Yesterday, I asked God if God knew our names.
The answer is yes!
Isn't that just too wonderful?
Thank you, God, for knowing our names. In Jesus name. Amen.
Question of the day: What do you think about angels?
Copyright 2009 Amelia G. Sims