Articles Comments

Yeshua in Context » Background to Gospels, Ideal Israel Theme, Identity of Yeshua, New Moses Theme, Temptation » Temptation, Moses, Wilderness

Temptation, Moses, Wilderness

Matthew especially develops layers of symbolism, Yeshua as the New Moses and Yeshua as Ideal Israel. The temptation story (Matthew 4:1-11) is bursting with such symbolism. See Dale Allison, The New Moses: A Matthean Typology for details.

The list of parallels is not only interesting, but a great clue to the meaning of the temptation story itself.

The note that Yeshua was led up into the wilderness is more than a hint of God leading Israel into the wilderness. Forty days and nights without food, while more similar to Moses’ stay on Mt. Sinai (Deut 9:9), also calls to mind the forty years Israel was in the wilderness. See Jer 2:6; Ezek 20:10; and Amos 2:10 for verses about God leading Israel into and through the wilderness.

Israel was tempted (and tested God) with regard to three things:
…(1) Hunger (Exod 16:2-8), the Manna story.
…(2) Putting God to the test due to lack of water (Exod 17:17:1-3; Deut 6:16).
…(3) Idolatry (Exod 32), the Golden Calf story.

Compare Matthew 4:8 and Deuteronomy 34:1-3, where God showed Moses all of the land.

Yeshua quotes three verses from Moses:
…(1) Deuteronomy 8:3, in order to teach you that man does not live on bread alone, but that man may live on anything that the Lord decrees.
…(2) Deuteronomy 6:16, ┬áDo not try the Lord your God, as you did at Massah.
…(3) Deuteronomy 6:13, Revere only the Lord your God and worship Him alone, and swear only by His name.

Written by

Filed under: Background to Gospels, Ideal Israel Theme, Identity of Yeshua, New Moses Theme, Temptation · Tags:

Leave a Reply

*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>