Esau was unrefined but had potential to be refined. Did his angel have two natures?

The angels must assemble for their praises in “watches” throughout the day, which is why the angel of Esau demanded to be released from the grip of Jacob before the break of dawn, so it could return to its place in Heaven to recite its praises to G-d in the morning watch. That is the “spiritual side” of the angel of Esau. Its “materialistic” side is reflected its efforts to fulfill its specific mission to bring physical bounty and success to Esau. He was the father of the nation of Edom, which later became identified with the Roman Empire.
It is well known that each angel has its own name, which reflects its general nature. However, in several places in the Hebrew Bible, an angel appears to an individual to deliver a Divine message, but the angel refuses to reveal its name, saying that its name is hidden. Here are two examples: Gen. 32:30 and Judges 13:18.

This is because G-d gives each angel a general mission in the heavenly realms, and can also send the angel on specific missions in the physical world. Furthermore, an angel is never sent on two specific missions at the same time – a different angel is sent for each specific mission. For example, G-d sent not just one, but three angels to visit Abraham: Raphael to heal Abraham after his circumcision, Michael to announce to him the birth of Isaac, and Gabriel to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah (Gen. 18:2). Since the life force of the angel comes to it through its Hebrew name, when it has to go on a specific mission it receives a special temporary and hidden name which is reflective of that mission. [To clarify: an angel can be given many different specific consecutive missions. But it is only given one mission at a time.] The general mission of the angels is to stand in their places among the infinite troops of angels in the infinite levels of the Heavens, and sing praises to G-d. Each day the angels assemble and proclaim, “Holy, holy, holy is the L-rd of hosts; the whole earth is full of His glory” (Isaiah 6:3). In love they rush toward the G-dliness which is beyond them, and then they immediately retreat in fear of the G-dliness, only to be overcome with a longing for the G-dliness, which they again rush toward in love. This constant advance and retreat of the angels (see Ezekiel 1:14) generates a periodic rhythm of spiritual energy on each Heavenly level. This energy generated by the angels standing in a higher Heavenly level becomes projected downward as the spiritual life force for the next lower Heavenly level and all the angels within it. That is why the angels of an upper level are the souls of the angels of the next lower level (see Ezekiel 1:21). That is also why all the manifestations of physical nature are in the form of waves, orbits and cycles, because the life force for our universe that is generated by the angels comes in a constantly periodic cycle.

For more information about the angel of Esau as the “prince” (“sar” in Hebrew) angel assigned over the Roman Empire, please see this page on our site: