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Core Christianity: Tough Questions Answered

Christ in the Old Testament, Part 2

aired December 19, 2018

Episode 78 Show Notes 

Christ in the Old Testament, Part 2

From the Show

Michael Horton: So characteristically, the angel of his presence or the angel of the Lord, when it’s singled out as the angel, not an angel, but the angel of the Lord.  The angel of his presence, we're talking about the second person of the Trinity.

Adriel Sanchez: One passage that I often think of is Exodus Chapter 33, where Moses says to God in prayer, “Please, show me your glory.” And if you remember, God responds to him and says to him, “I will make all my goodness pass before you and will proclaim my name before you, the Lord.  And I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious and I will show mercy on whom I will show mercy.” But he said, “You cannot see my face, for man shall not see me and live.” And the Lord said, “Behold, there’s a place by me where you shall stand on the rock and while my glory passes by, I will put you in the cleft of the rock and I will cover you with my hand until I have passed by.  Then I will take away my hand and you shall see my back, but my face you shall not see." There’s this really interesting language here, God revealing himself to his people passing by them. And I think this actually helps unlock other passages for us in particular in the New Testament.

There’s that scene where Jesus in Mark Chapter 6 tells his disciples to go to the other side Bethsaida in a boat.  And if you remember, they get caught up in a storm and then Mark says something really interesting there. He says that Jesus was walking on the water and he intended to pass by them. And a lot of people were baffled by that. What in the world is Mark talking about? Is Jesus, you know, trying to walk by or pass up the disciples. When you look at these Old Testament Theophanies where the language of God passing by was God revealing his glory to his people.

Whitney Gamble: Well, yeah.  I mean, the nature of the glory being incarnate in a human, a normal human.  But what was the point of that? Then John 1 says, "The glory as the only Son from the Father is full of grace and truth,” so that the purpose of that glory being revealed is gracious.  It’s that he has to be revealed as a humble human in order for God’s full glory to be revealed in the redemption of sinners through what Christ has done as a human sacrifice.

Justin Holcomb: We also have in Exodus 3, what is the name of God?  He says, “I am who I am.” And he said, “Say this to the people of Israel, I am has sent me to you.” In verse 15, God also said to Moses, “Say this to the people of Israel, the Lord, the god of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob has sent me to you.  This is my name forever and thus I am to be remembered throughout all ages.” You can't hear the name being given and not think of the numerous places where Jesus claimed to be before Abraham, be before Moses, all of these people, and then basically he’s taking on this name for himself in various ways with the ‘I am’ when he says, “Not just I am the gate, I am divine, I am –” he is using the language and some people have kind of downplayed that and said, well, of course, if he is going to try to make himself into something  is an analogy, he’s going to have to say those words ‘I am’.

But when he said them, he said, “I am the gate.” We just talked about the gate of Heaven. I am the shepherd. Well, Yahweh described himself as the shepherd of his people. That was a divine image. It wasn’t like he was going, oh, I’m like a shepherd who hangs out with sheep. It's like, I am the shepherd of Israel. I am divine, I give life. I mean, all of these images were not just divine images, but also these ‘I am’ statements. As a good Jew, he would not have tinkered and played with ‘I am’ just willingly.


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