The Finger of God

“The cause [of the plagues] was the Lord’s hand, the hand regularly being symbolic of personal intervention and action, or the Lord’s finger, the finger suggesting a more detailed involvement.” -Alec Motyer, Exodus

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He Casts His Shadow Back Into the Old Testament

In other words, it is a prolepsis. The coming event of Jesus casts its shadow before it in the coming of Israel out of Egypt. It is a foreshadowing of Jesus. This is pretty marvellous and even mind boggling. Why did Israel go down to Egypt and come out of Egypt? Because, in the ultimate, that is what would happen to Jesus. It was because it would happen to him in the future that it happened to them in the past. Their past experience caught the shadow of the coming Messiah, and the Word of God was fulfilled in ways that you would never have thought. Indeed this feature of prolepsis may have been in Matthew’s mind throughout his introduction of Jesus. In parallel with Exodus 4: 22– 3, Jesus is the Son of God in Egypt (Matt. 2: 15); in Exodus 14 Israel came to the water (of the Red Sea) and grumbled (vv. 10– 12), Jesus came to the Jordan and committed himself to ‘fulfilling all righteousness’ (Matt. 3: 13– 17); Israel’s record in the wilderness (Exod. 15– 17) was one of grumbling and discontent, Jesus in the wilderness (Matt. 4: 1– 11) met and conquered Satan; in parallel with Exodus 19, Jesus came to the mount (Matt. 5: 1), not as another Moses, to act as intermediary, but to sit as God (Exod. 19: 18; 20: 1) teaching his people his law. That the pre-history of God’s people was thus ‘shaped’ by the shadow of the Coming One not only enhances the wonder of biblical prophecy but also adorns the dignity and greatness of our Lord Jesus Christ.”Alec Motyer, A Christian’s Pocket Guide to Loving the Old Testament

Grace Before Law

“Are you interpreting the ‘visual aid’? Egypt first, then Sinai; Passover first, then the giving of the Law; the divine work of grace first, then the life of responsive obedience, redemption/ salvation first, then walking with God in his appointed way of holiness.” -Alec Motyer, A Christian’s Pocket Guide to Loving the Old Testament

The Old Testament is Our Book

“The Old Testament does not belong— let me say it to you sensitively— does not belong to the Jewish people. The Old Testament is our book, and the things that happened in the Old Testament are our prehistory, yours and mine because we belong to Jesus. Bishop Maurice Wood was the prince of pulpit anecdotes. ‘A story for every occasion’ could be the title of his biography. He delighted to tell of a Frenchman who became a naturalised Englishman. He was asked, ‘Has it made any difference to you that you are now an English citizen and not a French citizen?’ ‘Oh yes,’ he said, ‘it has made all the difference in the world. You see now I’ve won the Battle of Waterloo!’ The Old Testament is our book. We should never find ourselves saying ‘They came out of Egypt.’ The Exodus redemption is my prehistory and yours. And what we call Old and New Testament is one magnificent story of God working out his age-long purpose of salvation, making promises and keeping them, inspiring predictions and fulfilling them, taking and preserving a people for his name and glory.” -Alec Motyer, A Christian’s Pocket Guide to Loving the Old Testament