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TSpace Repository Toronto School of Theology – Theses University of St. Michael’s College Faculty of Theology St. Michael’s College Faculty of Theology – Doctoral Theses
Angelic Intermediaries: The Development of a Revelatory Tradition
Newman, Judith H.
angels; angelology; Second Temple Period; Zechariah 1-8; Daniel 7-12; 1 Enoch 1-36; interpreting angel; angelic guide; angelic mediation; revelation
This thesis explores the development of angelic mediation in Second Temple Judaism. Within this broader topic, I focus on a specific type or group of angelic beings who are given a variety of different names by scholars. They are often described using the following titles: an angelus interpres, an interpreting angel, a heavenly tour guide or an otherworldly mediator. What distinguishes these angels from previous angelic beings is that they engage in dialogue with a human as they mediate divine revelation. The first explicit mention of such an angel occurs in Zech 1:9 where he is identified as המלאכ הדבר בי “the angel who spoke with me.” Similar angelic beings also feature prominently in various Second Temple texts who assume the roles of interpreters, guides and/or intercessors. In each case, the angelic figure and the human are continually engaged in a dialogue featuring primarily a question-and-answer format. This thesis seeks to delineate the nature and function of these angelic figures and their use especially as they develop in the earliest texts of Zech 1-8, 1 En. 1-36 and Dan 7-12. It concludes that one cannot speak of a homogenous tradition of angelic mediation but one which is continually adapting over time. Although broad lines of continuity are present between the three books, these angelic mediators are not stock characters that are identical in function. Instead I argue that each text brings its own adaptations and idiosyncrasies to these existing traditions generating new presentations of angelic mediation.
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