Over on the MCTS blog there’s an answer with which I heartily agree!
Filed under Biblical Theology, Messiah in the OT, Messianism
I think the OT can certainly be viewed as a messianic text. There are enough broad subjects to allow one to piece that theology together. I think, however, that it is much more complex than that. The move toward messianic theology increased during the Persian occupation. Early Hebrew theology had little to do with the coming of a messiah, life after death, Hell or the coming Kingdom of God.
RD, do you mean by early Hebrew theology, extra-biblical early Hebrew theology?
RD, What do you mean by early Hebrew theology?
RD, you make it clear in your comment that this is what YOU “think…” What does the Bible say?
Job is pre-Hebrew theology, yet he himself knew enough about Messianic prophecy to declare the following in Job 19…
25 For I know that my Redeemer lives,
And He shall stand at last on the earth;
26 And after my skin is destroyed, this I know,
That in my flesh I shall see God,
27 Whom I shall see for myself,
And my eyes shall behold, and not another.
How my heart yearns within me!
Search the Scriptures and “lean not on your own understanding.” Search the OT Scriptures for, as Christ told the Pharisees, “These are they which testify of me.”
Or take Exodus 34…
5 Now the LORD descended in the cloud and stood with him there, and proclaimed the name of the LORD. 6 And the LORD passed before him and proclaimed, “The LORD, the LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abounding in goodness and truth, 7 keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, by no means clearing the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children and the children’s children to the third and the fourth generation.”
8 So Moses made haste and bowed his head toward the earth, and worshiped. 9 Then he said, “If now I have found grace in Your sight, O Lord, let my Lord, I pray, go among us, even though we are a stiff-necked people; and pardon our iniquity and our sin, and take us as Your inheritance.”
Explain how God descended and passed before Moses and yet we read in the Gospels that NO man has seen God at any time, but Christ alone has revealed Him. This passage in Exodus tells us of a pre-incarnate appearing of Jesus Christ. So here is Messiah appearing to Moses and declaring what? That the Lord God is merciful, gracious, longsuffering, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin…
Now I ask you, how can God be any of these things apart from the life and work of Messiah? How could Moses have understood these things if he had nothing but the law he had received fourteen chapters earlier?
Early Hebrew theology had EVERYTHING to do with the Messiah. It had EVERYTHING to do with the promise of the Seed that would crush the head of Satan. Even Eve, the mother of all living, had aspirations that her son Seth might be the promised Messiah.
Yes, there were things that were a mystery to them – only to be fully revealed at the coming of Christ. But to say that early Hebrew theology had little to do with the coming of Messiah? That is simply not biblical…
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