“All these things happened to them as examples–as object lessons to us–to warn us against doing the same things; they were written down so that we could read about them and learn from them in these last days as the world nears its end.” (I Cor. 10:11 TLB)
At the very outset of this message, I would like to state that it may surprise some (not very familiar with the chronological order of NT Books) that when Apostle Paul penned those immortal words, “All Scripture is God-inspired…” (2 Tim 3:16), the New Testament section of the Bible in its present form was not yet fully compiled. For instance, “books”, such as John’s Gospel and the Book of Revelation, had not yet been written. So what exactly did Apostle Paul have in mind when he wrote those epochal (figuratively speaking) words? Obviously the Jewish Scriptures, the ones we would call the “Old Testament”.
Whilst meditating on the afore-referred Scripture, which is all about “learning from the History of the Nation of Israel”, it would serve those of us in the present age well to remember that the unchanging Lord we are serving is the same Lord of the Old Testament Scriptures. He still blesses the obedient, but sets Himself up against the proud (James 4:6b/1 Peter 3:12 TLB).
Since our Heavenly Father is the same unchanging One all throughout the Scriptures, do we, then, see similarities between the people of the Old Covenant (read the Sinai Covenant) and the ones of the New one, especially in the matter of Lord’s dealings with them?
“Yes” would be the affirmative answer!
In this series of 4 parts, with the concerned sub-headings therein beginning with the alphabet “D”, I will endeavor to bring forward similarities between the “Church of the bygone covenant…” (SeeActs 7:38) and the Church of the existing covenant. We will begin with the “principal actors'” of the respective covenants…
Both Moses and Jesus have been used by the Almighty as “Deliverers'”. Moses was used by the Almighty to deliver the people of Israel from the Egyptian slavery (Pharoah was an agent of the Devil) to be His own “property”: “Now if you will obey me and keep my covenant, you will be my own special treasure from among all the peoples on earth; for all the earth belongs to me. And you will be my kingdom of priests, my holy nation.’ This is the message you must give to the people of Israel.” (Ex. 19:5,6 NLT). Our Heavenly Father then used our Saviour to deliver us from the bondage to the world of Satan to be His exclusive “property” as well:“But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests,[a] a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light.” (1 Peter 2:9 NLT).
If functionally both of the the “main initiators” of the two covenants were similar, then one would observe stark similarities with respect to other aspects of their lives as well. Remember the words of Moses, that God would raise up a “similar” prophet? (SeeDeut. 18:18-20). Here are some of the similarities we find between Moses and Jesus:
1. Mother: The adopted mother of Moses, with whom Moses would spend much of his childhood and youth time, was also a virgin when she rescued Moses (seeEx. 2:1-10). Mary, the mother of Jesus was a virgin at the time of Jesus’ birth (seeLuke 1:26-45)
2. Mortal Danger: As a child, Moses faced mortal danger from Egyptian King Pharaoh, but was miraculously saved by the Almighty (seeEx. 2:1-10). Similarly, as a child, Jesus faced mortal danger from the Judean King Herod, but was miraculously saved by the Heavenly Father (SeeMatt. 2:1-21)
4. Miracles: Both performed awesome miracles.
5. Mount of transfiguration: At Mount Sinai, Moses had the transfiguration experience, which created fear amongst his close associates, even Aaron (SeeExo 34:29-30). Jesus’ mount of transfiguration was Mount Tabor, where His experience created fear amongst His closest associates, Peter, James and John (SeeMark 9:2-6)
7. Methodology: The Old Covenant was given first to Moses in written form, and then onto the Jews (SeeEx. 24:4/Ex. 31:18/Ex. 34:1). The New Covenant is being “written” in the hearts of Christians as per the prophecy (SeeJer. 31:33) was first “written down” in the heart of the Messiah (seePs. 40:6-8)!
8. Meekness: Moses was the meekest man on Planet Earth during his time (SeeNum. 12:3). The Hebrew word for meekness used in this passage is Anav which means, ‘meekness borne not out of weakness’. It is actually a condition of someone who is constantly bowed down under constant pressure, like a branch weighed down by fruit. The huge burden of leadership led to this fruitful spiritual condition in Moses. While we readNumber 12:3, let’s remember the fact he was more “weighed down” than anyone else, lest anyone of us misconstrue that Moses was “proud” of his humility. Without retaliation, Moses would intercede for the very ones’ who would look down upon him or persecute him. (SeeNumbers 12:1-13/Numbers 14:1-19). Jesus was the meekest on Planet Earth in His generation (SeeMatt. 11:29). The Greek word for Praus used in this passage also means “bowed down fruitful condition” wrought by heavy responsibilities. The constant realization of the responsibility of becoming “sin itself” for Mankind would weigh heavily on the Saviour’s shoulders from Eternity onwards (seeRev. 13:8/John 12:27)! Without retaliation, Jesus would intercede for the very ones who would look down upon him or persecute him. (SeeMatt. 11:29/Luke 23:34)
9. Mass Tragedy: Those who wouldn’t listen to Moses’ words on occupying Canaan died en masse in the Wilderness journey barring two men (seeNumbers 13-14/Numbers 26:64-65). Likewise, those Jews who wouldn’t accept the words of Christ that He is the Saviour (seeJohn 14:6) perished en masse in the 70 AD destruction of Jerusalem (SeeActs 3:22-23). Those Christians who wouldn’t walk as per the Holy instructions of Christ would also perish (see1 Cor. 11:30).
11. Massacre: Moses was used by the Almighty to bury the army of the first World super power–the army of Egypt–in the Red Sea (SeeEx. 14:26-28). Jesus will be used by the Almighty to slaughter the army of the final super power at Armageddon…the army of Anti-Christ (SeeRev. 19:11-21) (Note, The 7 heads of the Red Dragon, Satan, depict the 7 World powers Egypt, Assyrians, Babylonians, Medo-Persians, Greeks, Romans and the Revived Roman Empire (Anti-Christ), which are inimical to God’s people. (SeeRev. 12:3).
Of course, so many similarities aside, one ought not to forget the fact that the Messiah, the Son of God, never failing even once in the obedience front (SeeHeb. 4:15), is greater than the great Servant of God, who would falter once in the face of severe provocation (SeeNumbers 20:2-13,Heb. 3:3-5)!
An unworthy servant
J and SM Ministries