Did Abraham meet JESUS?
Question: In Genesis it says the Lord and some strangers visited Abraham. Did he actually meet and talk with JESUS?
Answer: Let's take a look at the scriptures discussing the meeting in question. They are found in Genesis 18: "Then the LORD appeared to him by the terebinth trees of Mamre, as he was sitting in the tent door in the heat of the day. So he lifted his eyes and looked, and behold, three men were standing by him; and when he saw them, he ran from the tent door to meet them, and bowed himself to the ground . . . So Abraham hurried into the tent to Sarah and said, "Quickly, make ready three measures of fine meal; knead it and make cakes . . ." (Genesis 18:1-2, 6, NKJV throughout)
Abram was being hospitable to the strangers based on custom ---- but he may have also known one of them personally. The Wycliffe Bible Commentary, page 24, has this comment for Genesis 18:2 : "Abraham proved extraordinarily hospitable. He did everything for his guests that Oriental hospitality could suggest. His manner was all that could be asked." Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown's Commentary by Zondervan, page 28, has this to say about verse 2: "he ran to meet them . . .When the visitor is an ordinary person, the host merely rises; but if of superior rank, the custom is to advance a little towards the stranger, and after a very low bow, turn and lead him to the tent, putting an arm round his waist, or tapping him on the shoulder as they go, to assure him of welcome."
In Genesis 18:1, the word "Lord" comes from the word Yehovah (Strong's Concordance #3068), which is generally pronounced as Jehovah (Other pronunciations include Yahweh and Yahveh. The name is so sacred that orthodox Jews will not even attempt to pronounce it. Instead they usually use the term "Hashem" or "Adonai".). We know from previous scriptures such as Genesis 12:1, 15:1, and 17:1 that the 'father of the faithful' had seen the "Lord" appearing to him as Yehovah.
In John 8:53, in a dialogue between Jesus and the Jews, he is asked the question: "Are you greater than our father Abraham, who is dead? And the prophets are dead. Who do you make yourself out to be?"
His surprising and revealing response to this question is in verses 56-58: "' . . . Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day, and he saw it and was glad.' Then the Jews said to Him, 'You are not yet fifty years old . . .' Jesus said to them, 'Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM.' "
In Genesis 18:3, the word "Lord" is the same word as in verse 1, but is plural, which would seem to indicate that Abram could not initially determine who he was speaking with since they appeared as men. It wasn't until after the three had eaten, in verses 9-15, that he realized the true identity of his visitors and their purpose - and that one of those he spoke with was Jesus manifested in the flesh!
| |Meeting Melchizedek
The account recorded in Genesis 18 testifies to the very high esteem that Abraham held in the eyes of God. That is why he is called "My friend" in Isaiah 41:8; why he is called God's "friend forever" in 2Chronicles 20:7; why in James 2:23 it states, " . . . he was called the friend of God". And, as an added twist, He had been circumcised just THREE DAYS before meeting the visitors!!