Typology

Jim West jwest at Highland.Net
Thu Nov 11 16:33:55 EST 1999


At 10:32 PM 11/11/99 +0200, you wrote:

>Moses > Elijah is a nice example.

>

So who is a type of whom? 

40 days without eating for
>both of them, they see God on Mt. Sinai, where they receive
>a commission which they themselves do not fulfill, but which
>must be fulfilled by their successor who is in that respect
>greater than them.  Moses is the covenant mediator, is
>commissioned to tear down the Canaanite altars, kill the
>Canaanites -

Huh?  Where exactly is Moses commissioned to kill canaanites? And when does
he (or Joshua, if that is what you are implying) tear down canaanite altars?

> Elijah complains that Israel has broken the
>covenant, torn down the Lord's altars and killed the Lord's
>prophets, and so he is commissioned to destroy the
>Israelites (except for the remnant that has not kissed
>Baal). 

Again, huh?  Which Israelites does Elijah kill?  Are you assuming the
prophets of baal were israelites?  If so, what leads you to that assumption?

>Note that this typological relationship between Moses
>and Elijah would cast the king opposing Elijah (i.e. Ahab)
>in the role of Pharaoh who opposed Moses, and would cast
>Israel as a largely Canaanite (morally speaking) nation.
>

typological relationship?  i dont think so.  at best we have one modeled on
another but that hardly merits the title of typological.

>Moses cannot carry out his commission because he is
>prevented from entering the land because of his episode of
>unbelief, 

unbelief?  is the smiting of the rock ever called unbelief in the HB?

>so his successor Joshua does it.  God begins to
>exalt him at the Jordan River (Josh 3:7 "This day I will
>begin to exalt you in the sight of all Israel, that they may
>know that just as I have been with Moses, I will be with
>you").  Before Elijah is taken up to heaven, he reverses the
>steps of Joshua to cross over the Jordan on dry ground, so
>he departs from the same side of the Jordan as Moses was on
>when he died.  Like Joshua, his successor Elisha is then
>exalted in the miracle of the crossing of the dry Jordan,
>and Elisha goes on fulfilling the commission of Elijah.
>

again, interesting parallels; but not typology.  remember the days of
"parallelomania"?  And now "pan-deuteronomism"?  it seems that you are
seeing types where there are none.  so where do the types stop or start?
what are their limits?  how do you decide what is a type and what is not?
what are your criteria of determination of a type?

>It's interesting that for a believing Israelite the names
>Joshua and Elisha mean the same thing because Eli = jah.
>

not at all.  how are you deriving elisha? el-yashai?

>The NT extends this typology to the pair John (the Baptist)
>> Jesus, of whom John says "he who comes after me is greater 
>than me."  Like Joshua and Elisha, Jesus (same name) is
>exalted 

now i think you see the danger latent in seeing all kinds of types where
there are none.

>at the Jordon River (his baptism).  The new Pharaoh/Ahab is 
>Herod, and John perishes on the same side of the Jordan as
>Moses.
>

well then the making of the axe head float must be jesus walking on the
water.  or maybe its peter.

>If you look at John 1, you can also see some parallels with
>Joshua's actions after the crossing of the Jordan.
>

no- again you are seeing demons behind every tree.  where do you NOT see a type?

>Like Samuel Clemmens said, history doesn't repeat itself,
>but it does rhyme (seems especially true of biblical
>history).
>

well since the bible isnt history the clemens citation isnt really apropos.

again, my central question and that which mosts interests me- where do you
NOT see types at work?

best,

Jim

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Jim West, ThD
jwest at highland.net
http://web.infoave.net/~jwest




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