Series in Christology Part 4: The Incarnation of the Son of God -- By: John F. Walvoord

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 105:420 (Oct 1948)
Article: Series in Christology Part 4: The Incarnation of the Son of God
Author: John F. Walvoord

Series in Christology
Part 4:
The Incarnation of the Son of God

John F. Walvoord

{Editor’s note: Footnotes in the original printed edition were numbered 12–13, but in this electronic edition are numbered 1–2 respectively.}

II. Christological Typology (Continued)

Typical Things

It is an essential postulate of theism that creation reveals the Creator. In fact, the material world was evidently designed by God to illustrate spiritual things. Such elements as life and death, light and dark, the sun, moon, and stars—in a word both the macroscopic and the microscopic—speak of corresponding ideas in the spiritual world. It is not strange or unexpected that God should expressly appoint certain things to constitute illustrations of spiritual truths. Where God appoints a thing to reveal a truth, we have a type. The Old Testament is full of things which have a typical meaning. Often there is express Scriptural warrant for such interpretation, but there is a vast field which is left to the insight of the interpreter without mention in the New Testament. If the study is confined to the more obvious types two fields of typology stand out—the sacrifices of the Old Testament and the Tabernacle. Both were designed and revealed by God Himself and were unquestionably intended to be types and illustrations of spiritual truth. In addition to these, there are a few other outstanding typical things in the Old Testament such as the rod of Aaron, the brazen serpent, and the smitten rock.

The Old Testament sacrifices. The sacrifices of the Old Testament are clearly intended to be a typical foreshadowing of the sacrifice of Christ. Almost every aspect of the meaning of the death of Christ is anticipated. Central in the sacrifices is the feature of shed blood, looking forward to the shed blood of Christ. The explanation given in the Old Testament is that the blood was given and shed to make an atonement: “For the life of the flesh is in the blood; and I have given it

to you upon the altar to make atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh atonement by reason of the life” (Lev 17:11 A.R.V.). This central truth dominates the typology of the sacrifices.

Among the sacrifices, the offering of a lamb was most common. This was practiced even before the Mosaic law (cf. Gen 4:4; 22:7). At the institution of the Passover, the lamb was used by Israel for its observance. Under the Levitical ritual, a lamb was offered morning and evening as a sacrifice and two lambs were offered on the...

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