One of the ways that Dale Tuggy tries to salvage unitarianism is by appealing to exalted intermediaries in 2nd Temple Judaism. But there are several problems with this move:
i) He’s classified agential/instrumental categories under subordinationist unitarianism, which he distinguishes from his own position (i.e. humanitarian unitarianism). So why is he appealing to harmonistic devices which he himself rejects?
ii) Before he can invoke sectarian Intertestamental literature, he’d need to show that the NT writers who use deific ascriptions for Jesus thought that sectarian literature was sufficiently authoritative to supply a precedent for Christology.
iii) Darrell Bock has written a standard monograph on the subject: Blasphemy and Exaltation in Judaism (Baker 2000). Even the most exalted creatures in 2nd Temple Judaism fall far short of what’s said about Jesus. And even these lesser ascriptions provoked a pushback. As Bock says, summarizing his documentation and analysis:
The image of an exalted Enoch appears to have been countered by other Enoch traditions arguing that he only observed and recorded the judgment, was punished as Metatron-Enoch, or even failed to be among the righteous (Tps-Jon to Gen 5:25; 3 En 16:4-5; TOnq to Gen 5:24; Gen R 25:1). The exalted Moses imagery also seems to have received attention as needing clarification that prevented a misunderstanding (Philo, Questions on Exodus 2:29). These counter traditions indicate that some had a degree of discomfort with placing someone so close to God (162).
Enoch-Metatron is given great authority over heavenly affairs, but he also is disciplined when that authority is misused in a way that might confuse him with God (3 En 3–16)…[This] also indicates the intense fear and reaction such exaltation texts produced when they were seen as giving too exalted a position to someone other than God.
As noted, these final two portraits of Enoch-Metatron and Enoch-Son of Man produced controversy. These figures appear in other passages in ways that show great nervousness about the extent of exaltation attributed to them (Tabr 11:3-8[B]- for Enoch; 3 En 16; b Hag 15a; b Sanh 38b; and b AZ 3b- for Metatron). God’s honor is unique and is not to be confused with anyone else’s status. To equate anyone else with God is to risk thinking blasphemously…The highest forms of exaltation apparently also met with some strong opposition or clear qualification of such claims (182-83).