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14 Then the Lord himself[a] turned to him and said, “You have the strength.[b] Deliver Israel from the power of the Midianites![c] Have I not sent you?”

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  1. Judges 6:14 tc The LXX reads “the angel of the Lord” here and in v. 16. The translation follows the MT and adds “himself” to draw attention to the change. sn Some interpreters equate the Lord and the messenger in this story. Since the messenger represents the Lord, perhaps when the Lord is mentioned in vv. 14 and 16 it means so indirectly, while Gideon’s direct encounter is with the angel. Indicators that the Lord and the angel of the Lord are distinct include: 1) the Hebrew text says only “Lord” in vv. 14 and 16; 2) in verse 16 the speaker in the Hebrew text says “I will be with you” referring to the Lord (but see the note at v. 16); 3) Gideon addresses the angel as ‎אֲדֹנִי (ʾadoni, “my lord”) but the Lord as אֲדֹנָי (ʾadonay, “my Lord”); 4) in vv. 22-23 the Lord and Gideon continue to carry on a conversation after the messenger has vanished (v. 21). On the other hand, if the Lord was present, appearing visibly in human form (called a theophany), as implied by “turning” [his head] to Gideon, why would Gideon not be more fearful at the end of the story for having seen God rather than his angel? The story could be pictured as an exchange with the angel followed by calling out to the Lord in prayer. The translation assumes that the angel and the Lord are distinct in the conversation, but the matter is difficult.
  2. Judges 6:14 tn Heb “Go in this strength of yours.”
  3. Judges 6:14 tn Heb “the hand of Midian.”

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