Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Seeing the Trajectory

I was recently (within the last month or so) inspired to read Exodus.  I had listened to a couple sermons, and I wanted to begin diving into what these pastors were pointing at.[1]  That is the trajectory of the Old Testament to Jesus, looking at how the words of God in the Old Testament are "pregnant or round with the gospel"[2].

So, I've been reading the Exodus, and it has been incredible.  I am seeing Moses as a mediator in a whole new light.  It is even more clear and amazing how Christ is the new and perfect Moses.  Just as the physical tabernacle of the Jews were shadows of the heavenly tabernacle, so Moses is a shadow of God's ultimate mediator - His Son - Jesus.

I have been thinking about all the sacrifices and offering that were required of God's people - sin offering, burnt offering, grain offering, wave offering, drink offering, and etcetera.  Jesus did not just fulfill completely the sacrifice of atonement, but he accomplished and fulfilled the requirement of all of these offerings and sacrifices.  Whatever these offerings were supposed to accomplish but could not (Hebrews 10:4) Jesus accomplished in fullness in His life, death, and resurrection.

Today I was reading Exodus 33:12 - 34:16.  In these passages Moses pleads with God to be with him and the Israelites or not to lead them to the Promised Land at all.  God responds and declares He will be with them; He will give them rest; His people have found favor in His sight; He will make them distinct from the other nations; He knows His people by name.  Pregnant with the gospel.  Do you see Jesus and His work?

Jesus has made the plea and He Himself has responded; He is preparing us for and leading us into the Promised Land - eternity with him.  Jesus declares, "And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:20); He promises and gives us rest (Matthew 11:28-29; Ephesians 2:6); Jesus found favor (grace) in the eyes of His Father (Matthew 3:17; 17:5; Ephesians 1:3); He has made us distinct from the rest of the world: "But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Once you were not a people, but now you are God's people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy" (1 Peter 2:9-10).  He knows us individually and personally (John 10:14, 27; 2 Timothy 2:19).  "Round with the gospel."

What a hope we have in Jesus!  No longer must we say, "Now therefore, if I have found favor in your sight, please show me now your ways, that I may know you in order to find favor in your sight. Consider too that this nation is your people...If your presence will not go with me, do not bring us up from here. For how shall it be known that I have found favor in your sight, I and your people? Is it not in your going with us, so that we are distinct, I and your people, from every other people on the face of the earth?”" (Exodus 33:13, 15-16).  We can and do proclaim, "Yes!  Because of Jesus we have found favor in your sight.  You have made us a people for yourself.  You do show us your ways (John 14:26; 16:13; 1 John 2:27)!

May we - His people - ever marvel more at the glorious sacrifice and resurrection of Jesus Christ - taking the wrath of God and purchasing a people for Himself forever.  May more and more people all over the world - from every tribe, tongue, and nation - come to marvel at the glorious work of God their Savior. 

[1] Messages from the Gospel Coalition's 2011 National Conference: http://thegospelcoalition.org/conferences/2011/#media
[2] From Mike Bullmore's message at The Gospel Coalition's 2011 National Conference: http://thegospelcoalition.org/resources/a/gods_great_heart_of_love_toward_his_own1