Colossians

part 17


 

Second  danger & answer

5d. Baptised in Christ (6)

Type iii. The Exodus: baptised unto Moses (1).




 Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea; And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea; And did all eat the same spiritual meat;  And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ. But with many of them God was not well pleased: for they were overthrown in the wilderness now these things were written for our examples (=types) to the intent that we should not lust after evil things as they also lusted.

I Cor.10:1-6

And it came to pass about an eight days after these sayings, he took Peter and John and James, and went up into a mountain to pray.  And as he prayed, the fashion of his countenance was altered, and his raiment was white and glistering.  And, behold, there talked with him two men, which were Moses and Elias:  Who appeared in glory, and spake of his decease (=EXODUS) which he should accomplish at Jerusalem.  But Peter and they that were with him were heavy with sleep: and when they were awake, they saw his glory, and the two men that stood with him.  And it came to pass, as they departed from him, Peter said unto Jesus, Master, it is good for us to be here: and let us make three tabernacles; one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias: not knowing what he said. While he thus spake, there came a cloud, and overshadowed them: and they feared as they entered into the cloud.  And there came a voice out of the cloud, saying, This is my beloved Son: hear him. 

Lk.9:28-35

5d.iii.(a) His Exodus

On the mount of transfiguration two men appeared with Jesus, Moses and Elijah. It is interesting to ask the question: how did the disciples identify these two great men of God? We are not told but identify them they did. The subject of their conversation was Jesus' decease as the KJV has it, in the Greek it is EXODUS.

In an earlier study we saw that Jesus described His death as a baptism, now the gospel writer describes it as an Exodus. Paul in the Corinthian passage quoted describes the original Exodus as a baptism! Further, Paul tells us that Israel was baptised unto Moses. So we have the direct connection in language between the events of Moses' life and the Exodus and the work of Christ at the cross.

In a later article we shall see that Elijah is also a type of Christ, the one who ascended and sent forth the Holy Spirit. Thus we see why these men were present at the transfiguration- they prefigured the person and work of Christ both at the cross and the sending forth of the Holy Spirit.

Paul in his account makes it clear these things were written as examples, or types, for our learning. In the immediate context of I Cor.10, the lessons for us is one of not falling into temptation and lusting after evil things. To pursue that point now would be to digress from the main theme  in hand. We would also note that Paul makes it clear that they were baptised in the cloud and the sea: in the antitype, the Spirit and water (Jn.3:5; Eph.5:26; I Pet.1:23-25).

So we see that the Exodus of the children of Israel from Egypt is a type of salvation and new birth. It also introduces us to the idea of redemption.

5d.iii.(b) The players

The Exodus is one of the most extensive types we see in the OT, some others being the Tabernacle and the sacrificial system. Without pushing the type beyond its measure we can learn quiet a lot. But first we need to identify what roles the people illustrate.

Israel was in bondage in Egypt under Pharaoh. God through Moses brought them out of that oppression in order to serve God and live in a promised land. Egypt typifies the world (its system that is); Pharaoh, the devil; the first born, the old man- the body of sin; Moses, the Lord Jesus; Israel, God's people. These are the main players and any other types will be introduced as required.

5d.iii.(c) The bondage

Now there arose up a new king over Egypt, which knew not Joseph.  And he said unto his people, Behold, the people of the children of Israel are more and mightier than we: Come on, let us deal wisely with them; lest they multiply, and it come to pass, that, when there falleth out any war, they join also unto our enemies, and fight against us, and so get them up out of the land. Therefore they did set over them taskmasters to afflict them with their burdens. And they built for Pharaoh treasure cities, Pithom and Raamses.   But the more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and grew. And they were grieved because of the children of Israel.  And the Egyptians made the children of Israel to serve with rigour (= crulety, severity)

Ex.1:8-14

And they made their lives bitter with hard bondage, in morter, and in brick, and in all manner of service in the field: all their service, wherein they made them serve, was with rigour. And it came to pass in process of time, that the king of Egypt died: and the children of Israel sighed by reason of the bondage, and they cried, and their cry came up unto God by reason of the bondage. And God heard their groaning, and God remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob. And God looked upon the children of Israel, and God had respect unto them. 


Ex.2:23-25

Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:  Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. 

Eph.2:2-3

The book of Exodus begins with the Egyptians turning the Israelites into slaves. This came from the top, Pharaoh himself took the decision to inflict this state with the  greatest of severity. Fear was the motivation, in that he reasoned, that if they became a strong people they would side with Egypt's enemies.  The result was oppression and cruel servitude.

This is a picture of the human race. Satan was ever our enemy, even in Eden. By his subtle devices he deceived Eve into disobedience. As a result Adam sinned and the whole of the human race became a servant of the devil and slaves of sin.  Or, as Paul calls him in Ephesians, the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience.

This means that every person born into this world alive is under the power and dominion of Satan. We are his servants, serving the desires of the flesh. We are under the world's authority, and it  conforms us to its image. We drink of its fountains and enjoy its pleasures.  Egypt was supplied with its 'water of life', namely the Nile and its annual flooding, and those of Egypt benefited from it. The world has its 'water of life 'source and those in the world enjoy its pleasures if only for a season.

But beneath there is an awareness that  all is not right. The world and its system is not all that it seems. For in the human heart there is a longing for a reality that can not be found in the world. A sigh that there is more to life than this bondage to the world and all its toys, its idle pomp and fading joys. This is why many turn to various activities, diversions of life or alternative lifestyles,  but they find no rest in them, no deliverance, no deep down satisfaction. But God hears and has made provision if only we would take heed!


5.d.iii.(d) I am come to deliver


And the LORD said, I have surely seen the affliction of my people which are in Egypt, and have heard their cry by reason of their taskmasters; for I know their sorrows;   And I am come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that land unto a good land and a large, unto a land flowing with milk and honey; unto the place of the Canaanites, and the Hittites, and the Amorites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites......Now therefore, behold, the cry of the children of Israel is come unto me: and I have also seen the oppression wherewith the Egyptians oppress them. Come now therefore, and I will send thee unto Pharaoh, that thou mayest bring forth my people the children of Israel out of Egypt. 

Ex.3:8-10


Then the LORD said unto Moses, Now shalt thou see what I will do to Pharaoh: for with a strong hand shall he let them go, and with a strong hand shall he drive them out of his land.  And God spake unto Moses, and said unto him, I am the LORD: And I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, by the name of God Almighty, but by my name JEHOVAH was I not known to them.  And I have also established my covenant with them, to give them the land of Canaan, the land of their pilgrimage, wherein they were strangers. And I have also heard the groaning of the children of Israel, whom the Egyptians keep in bondage; and I have remembered my covenant.  Wherefore say unto the children of Israel, I am the LORD, and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will rid you out of their bondage, and I will redeem you with a stretched out arm, and with great judgments:   And I will take you to me for a people, and I will be to you a God: and ye shall know that I am the LORD your God, which bringeth you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians. And I will bring you in unto the land, concerning the which I did swear to give it to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob; and I will give it you for an heritage: I am the LORD.  And Moses spake so unto the children of Israel: but they hearkened not unto Moses for anguish of spirit, and for cruel bondage.  And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,  Go in, speak unto Pharaoh king of Egypt, that he let the children of Israel go out of his land. And Moses spake before the LORD, saying, Behold, the children of Israel have not hearkened unto me; how then shall Pharaoh hear me, who am of uncircumcised lips? And the LORD spake unto Moses and unto Aaron, and gave them a charge unto the children of Israel, and unto Pharaoh king of Egypt, to bring the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt. 


Ex.6:1-13
 
 And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read.  And there was delivered unto him the book of the prophet Esaias. And when he had opened the book, he found the place where it was written,  The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,   To preach the acceptable year of the Lord. And he closed the book, and he gave it again to the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were fastened on him.  And he began to say unto them, This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears. 

Lk.4:16-21

That word, I say, ye know, which was published throughout all Judaea, and began from Galilee, after the baptism which John preached;  How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him. 

Acts 10:37-38

When Jesus began His earthly ministry, after the forty day period of temptation, He went into the synagogue at Nazareth, and read from the prophecy of Isaiah. He made it clear that this prophecy was now being fulfilled in Him. Part of the prophecy of Isa. 61 that He  read is: to preach deliverance to the captives, and ............, to set at liberty them that are bruised,  Part of Jesus' ministry was to preach deliverance and to set people at liberty from their bruised state.  When preaching to Cornelius Peter sums up Jesus' ministry as healing those who were oppressed of the devil, Acts 10:36-38.

The Exodus is a wonderful illustration of this ministry. We can not possibly cover all the aspects here, but will focus on the main points.  God had appeared to Moses and commissioned him to go and tell Pharaoh to let His  people go. So Moses left his place  and went down to Egypt.

Here is our first parallel point: Jesus came from heaven into the world. In order to accomplish our redemption and deliverance the eternal Son of God became a man in order  to fulfil His Father's will. Heb.10:5-7Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me: In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin thou hast had no pleasure.  Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God.  Moses was reluctant, Jesus was not so, He was willing and came freely, and was obedient even unto the death of the  cross Phil.2:5-8.

As we consider Moses' commission we see God promising to free  Israel from Egypt. In the first passage above we see that  God would deliver Israel from Egypt and then bring them to land of Canaan. In the second passage we see this truth expanded. God said:

1. He would bring them out from under the burdens of Egypt.
2. He would rid them of the bondage.
3. He would redeem them.
4. He would take them for a people.
5. He would be to Israel a God.
6. He would bring them to a land previously promised.
7. He would give it as an heritage.

The last two points we will leave until we look at the type regarding the entry into Canaan. Points 4 and 5 were the reasons God was going to deliver them. Israel was to be saved from Egypt, not to please themselves but to be a people who would serve God. Indeed when Moses went into Pharaoh the reason he gave was so that that Israel could  serve God Ex.7:16. They could not serve two masters, in order to serve God they had to be freed from the mastery of Pharaoh. Later on at Sinai God revealed a greater truth: Israel was to be a kingdom of priests to God Ex.19:5-6.

No man or woman can serve God unless freed from the mastery of the devil. Jesus puts it plainly that no man can serve two masters he will either hate the one and love the other or else he will hold to the one and despise the other Mtt.6:24. Likewise when God saves us it is not so that we can please ourselves, but rather     to become servants of righteousness, Rom.6:15-18. We then as the people of God, redeemed by Christ and translated into His kingdom, have become a peculiar people, a royal  priesthood unto God, I Pet.9-10.

God's promise to Israel was first to take His people out of Egypt. This deliverance was to be so complete that they would be rid of all their burdens. The slavery  they had endured would be ended once and for all. They would be redeemed. This is to do with ownership. Israel presently belonged to Pharaoh,  God was going to redeem them so that they would then  belong to Himself. There was going to be a price paid, Israel was to be redeemed.  

5.d.iii.(e) Christ our Passover

 
Else, if thou wilt not let my people go, behold, I will send swarms of flies upon thee, and upon thy servants, and upon thy people, and into thy houses: and the houses of the Egyptians shall be full of swarms of flies, and also the ground whereon they are.  And I will sever in that day the land of Goshen, in which my people dwell, that no swarms of flies shall be there; to the end thou mayest know that I am the LORD in the midst of the earth.  And I will put a division ( =redemption) between my people and thy people: to morrow shall this sign be.   And the LORD did so; and there came a grievous swarm of flies into the house of Pharaoh, and into his servants' houses, and into all the land of Egypt: the land was corrupted by reason of the swarm of flies. 
 
Ex.8:21-23

God sent a number of signs and plagues on the the Land. These were in order to persuade Pharaoh to let Israel go and serve God. The details of which we can not now go into.  The plagues were a judgement on the gods of Egypt (Num.33:2-4). There came a point in the series of plagues where they did not touch Israel. The passage above shows that at the time of the plague of flies God put a division  where  Israel dwelt - Goshen- and the rest of Egypt; the word for division used here is in fact redemption. Redemption means a division of a people; those who belong to God and those who do not. From there onwards, except for the last plague, Israel was spared the judgement unleashed on Egypt.

Time and again Pharaoh hardened his heart, he promised to release the children of Israel, albeit with some compromise, then went back on it. This continued until God's timetable had run its course and there was to be one last plague and Israel would at last be redeemed.


 And the LORD said unto Moses, Yet will I bring one plague more upon Pharaoh, and upon Egypt; afterwards he will let you go hence: when he shall let you go, he shall surely thrust you out hence altogether. Speak now in the ears of the people, and let every man borrow of his neighbour, and every woman of her neighbour, jewels of silver, and jewels of gold.  And the LORD gave the people favour in the sight of the Egyptians. Moreover the man Moses was very great in the land of Egypt, in the sight of Pharaoh's servants, and in the sight of the people.   And Moses said, Thus saith the LORD, About midnight will I go out into the midst of Egypt:  And all the firstborn in the land of Egypt shall die, from the firstborn of Pharaoh that sitteth upon his throne, even unto the firstborn of the maidservant that is behind the mill; and all the firstborn of beasts.  And there shall be a great cry throughout all the land of Egypt, such as there was none like it, nor shall be like it any more.  But against any of the children of Israel shall not a dog move his tongue, against man or beast: that ye may know how that the LORD doth put a difference between the Egyptians and Israel.  And all these thy servants shall come down unto me, and bow down themselves unto me, saying, Get thee out, and all the people that follow thee: and after that I will go out. And he went out from Pharaoh in a great anger.  And the LORD said unto Moses, Pharaoh shall not hearken unto you; that my wonders may be multiplied in the land of Egypt.  And Moses and Aaron did all these wonders before Pharaoh: and the LORD hardened Pharaoh's heart, so that he would not let the children of Israel go out of his land. 

Ex.11:1-10

 
The first born of Egypt were to die, including Pharaoh's. No one was exempt. This great judgement would result in Pharaoh finally releasing Israel, indeed the text says that he would thrust them out. God then gave instructions to Israel as to how they would escape the judgement of the first born


 And the LORD spake unto Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, saying, This month shall be unto you the beginning of months: it shall be the first month of the year to you.  Speak ye unto all the congregation of Israel, saying, In the tenth day of this month they shall take to them every man a lamb, according to the house of their fathers, a lamb for an house:   And if the household be too little for the lamb, let him and his neighbour next unto his house take it according to the number of the souls; every man according to his eating shall make your count for the lamb.  Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year: ye shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats: And ye shall keep it up until the fourteenth day of the same month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the evening.   And they shall take of the blood, and strike it on the two side posts and on the upper door post of the houses, wherein they shall eat it.  And they shall eat the flesh in that night, roast with fire, and unleavened bread; and with bitter herbs they shall eat it.  Eat not of it raw, nor sodden at all with water, but roast with fire; his head with his legs, and with the purtenance thereof.  And ye shall let nothing of it remain until the morning; and that which remaineth of it until the morning ye shall burn with fire. And thus shall ye eat it; with your loins girded, your shoes on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and ye shall eat it in haste: it is the LORD'S passover. For I will pass through the land of Egypt this night, and will smite all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgment: I am the LORD.   And the blood shall be to you for a token upon the houses where ye are: and when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and the plague shall not be upon you to destroy you, when I smite the land of Egypt.   And this day shall be unto you for a memorial; and ye shall keep it a feast to the LORD throughout your generations; ye shall keep it a feast by an ordinance for ever.  Seven days shall ye eat unleavened bread; even the first day ye shall put away leaven out of your houses: for whosoever eateth leavened bread from the first day until the seventh day, that soul shall be cut off from Israel.  

Ex.12:1-15

A lamb, without blemish,  was to be taken, one for each house and kept for four days. It was to be slain, its blood applied to the door posts and lintels. The lamb was to be roasted and eaten by those inside the house. At the appointed time the Lord  would  come and  destroy the first born, but those in the house would be passed over when He saw the blood.

This is one of the most profound types of Christ's redeeming work in the OT. In Heb.3:6 we are told that we are Christ's house. There is a lamb for that house and it is Jesus Himself. Right at the start of His public ministry the Baptist declared Him to be the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world Jn.1:29.

For three and one half years Jesus ministered in Israel preaching the gospel. In the fourth year, just as in the fourth day the lamb in Egypt was slain, Jesus became the Lamb slain. The lamb in Egypt had to be without blemish, Jesus too was without blemish, and during those long years of ministry not one person or devil could rightly accuse Him of sin. He was thoroughly examined and was found entirely sinless and worthy.

The blood applied to the  door and lintels  was a token so that when God saw it those in the household were safe. Those who did not have the blood applied were visited with judgement, the death of their first born; Pharaoh himself was not immuned. Just as in the flood those in the ark were saved from judgement, so those under the blood in the house were saved too. The lamb had been the sacrifice for the safety of the household. This a picture of the substitutionary death of Jesus for us. But note, the household had to be eating the Lamb inside. This leads us to the important NT application. 

Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us:  Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.  

I Cor.5:7

In addressing a problem of immorality at Corinth Paul makes this comment: Christ is our Passover, and we are to keep the feast. The Jews had their Passover in Egypt and were instructed to remember that yearly as one of their great feasts. As Christians we have our Passover. It is NOT the Jewish Passover. Our Passover is Christ, and we are to keep it. How?

The children of Israel had to eat the lamb, we are to eat the lamb provided for us and that is Jesus Christ Himself. To keep our Passover we are to eat Christ.

 I am that bread of life. Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead.  This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die. I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world. The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying, How can this man give us his flesh to eat?  Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you.  Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed.  He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him.  As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me.  This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever......   It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life. 

Jn.6:48-63
 
In this well know portion of John's gospel record Jesus, after having fed the multitude. In this section He declares that He is the bread of life that came down  from heaven, and that eternal life is only to be found in eating Him. True life is only in Christ and if anyone is to have eternal life they have to eat of Christ just as the Israelites had to be eating the lamb in those houses in Egypt under the token of the sprinkled blood. Jesus explains what He means: it is His words that He speaks that are Spirit ad life, just as God spoke life into man at the beginning so now we need to listen to His words and eat and drink of Him.

The Passover being completed, the first born destroyed the children of Israel we thrust out of Egypt towards their baptism unto Moses. This is considered  in the next article.
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