Identifying the Star-Angels in Revelation Ch. 1 – a Proposal

There are two main exegetical interpretations for the “mystery” (Rev 1:20) of the seven stars – who are, or who represent, “angels”  – in the right hand of Jesus in Rev. 1:16, 20. The Greek  word translated angel in these verses is the word angelos and corresponds to the Hebrew malak. Its primary meaning is a messenger, and very often, in context, particularly in Revelation, it clearly refers to a heavenly messenger or angel in the traditional sense. So naturally, one of the interpretations is that these angeloi are indeed (heavenly) angels too. A second major interpretation holds that the angeloi are the seven individual pastors or bishops who, it is claimed (without, it should be acknowledged, biblical or historical evidence)  were seven individuals who were the the highest human authority in each of the seven churches, and who singly represented these churches before God and who bore the major responsibility for them. (A variant being that the singular angelos represented the collective plurality of leadership – such as existed with the plural eldership in Ephesus mentioned in Acts 20:17, but viewed “as an ideal of corporate representation” as a single individual angelos.)

In this article, I wish to put forward a third, minority, view which is that the seven angeloi are simply the seven messengers who took written copies of Revelation to the seven churches and who also read the message out loud to them.

To access the article, please click on the link below.


As always, I will be most grateful for your help thoughts and comments regarding this article!

Categories: New Testament Exegesis, Revelation

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