A History of Advent in 25 People – 6

Yesterday we saw in Joseph a remarkable picture of the  of the one who was to come so that those who have eyes to see might be encouraged and given hope but

‘Joseph and all his brothers and all that generation died but the Israelites were fruitful and multiplied greatly and became exceedingly numerous so that the land was filled with them. Then a new king, who did not know Joseph came to power in Egypt’ Exodus 1.6-8

and things began to look bleak as the new king was determined to prevent the family line, that God had inaugurated and multiplied greatly, from continuing. It is extremely unlikely that he was aware of God’s promises to Abraham, so we can see here a ‘fight-back’ by the serpent against the promise for the world of one who would crush his head.

The new king however was powerless to derail God’s Covenants and by God’s grace and mercy

MOSES

was born.

It is an impossible task to distil the life and work of Moses, occupying four out of the five books of the Pentateuch,  so what follows has to be very selective but is absolutely s central to the History of Redemption and thus the History of Advent.

Born and protected at a time when his life was under threat in Egypt. Cf. Matthew 2

Met face to face with God in the desert at the burning bush

A reluctant ‘rescuer’, under God, of his people from Egypt – the Passover being a further great foretaste of what was promised to Adam and Eve – the final rescue from the slavery of sin into the freedom that is in Christ.

Described as one to whom ‘God spoke face to face as a man speaks to his friend. (Exodus 33.11)

Mediator of the Covenant at Sinai (Exodus 19.3-6)

 of which Paul Williamson has written on The Gospel Coalition website: http://www.thegospelcoalition.org/essay/the-biblical-covenants/

‘By reflecting God’s holiness (Lev. 19:1), Israel would showcase true theocracy and thus serve as God’s witnesses to a watching world. Moreover, since human rebellion threatened to jeopardize God’s ultimate objective (i.e., blessing all nations through Abraham’s “seed”), the Mosaic covenant also encompassed the means by which the divine-human relationship between Yahweh and Israel could be maintained: sacrificial worship, particularly on the Day of Atonement (Lev. 16), would ritually atone for Israel’s sin and symbolically express God’s forgiveness. Therefore, just as the Noahic covenant guaranteed the preservation of human life on earth, so the Mosaic covenant guaranteed the preservation of Israel, Abraham’s great nation, in the land. Such was crucial for the next stage in fulfilling God’s promises: establishing a royal line through which Abraham’s ultimate seed and covenant heir would eventually come (cf. Gal. 3:16).’

(bold emphasis in the last paragraph mine.)

Moses great man of God as he was, was nonetheless flawed as we all are and yet God used him mightily and the way to the birth of Jesus remained on course. Moses was the mediator at this point but God was and is the Covenant keeping God.

Let us never forget that as we look to the Second Advent – the return of Jesus – which will bring the final fulfilment of the promise of Genesis 3.15.

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