The Metanarratives of the Bible

On the surface the Bible may appear to be a collection of random stories about what Yahweh has done in the past. However, there is a greater unity that binds these stories into a bigger story. Just as each book of the Bible has themes that weave the ideas of the book together into one story, so does the Bible as a whole. These larger themes are called metanarratives. A metanarrative is an overarching storyline that flows throughout all the books of the Bible, tying them together into one grand story like sequels in a trilogy. Thus one could say that the different books of the Bible are merely acts in the greater play of the Bible. Though scholars name, split, and divide the metanarratives of the Bible differently, there are four major metanarratives that stand out as one reads the Bible as a whole. Because the four metanarratives are so interwoven, there will be some repetition of concepts as each one is discussed here. Additionally, the first one will build the foundation upon which the following three are built.

The metanarratives of the Bible are built upon and flow out of the foundation of the concept of creation-fall-redemption. The Bible begins with Yahweh as a good and righteous God who creates a good creation. He then gives humans, who are created in His image, the right to rule over this creation as righteous rulers representing Him. This creation is lost due to their violating of the righteous will of Yahweh and failing to protect the creation. The whole Bible tells the story of Yahweh entering into this fallen creation in order to redeem it and humanity back to Himself as sovereign Lord over it and into a relationship with Him. Ultimately this is accomplished through Jesus Christ as the God-man who redeems humanity back to Yahweh and will establish His kingdom on earth as it is in heaven. Everything in the Bible should be seen through the lens of this concept.

The Kingdom of Yahweh

The first and foremost concept in the Bible is that Yahweh is the one and only, absolute, sovereign Creator and King over creation. Genesis begins by stating that Yahweh has always existed and is Creator of all things. Because He is Creator of all things, that makes Him sovereign over all things. Thus Yahweh has the right to determine what is right and wrong and so to guide and discipline His creation according to His standard. Yahweh decided to share His kingdom with humanity by creating Adam and Eve in His image, that they might rule and subdue the creation in His name (Gen. 1:26-30). As Yahweh’s image bearers they were responsible for reflecting the kingship and righteousness of Yahweh onto His creation and protecting it from corruption. However, Adam and Eve gave this title over to Satan when they obeyed him rather than driving him out of the garden in obedience to Yahweh (Gen. 3:1-7). In doing so, they reflected Satan’s fallen and corrupted nature onto the creation, throwing it into chaos and darkness. By obeying Satan, they surrendered their rulership over the creation to him (Jn. 12:31; 14:30; 16:11; 2 Cor. 4:4; 1 Jn. 5:19). Creation was now in constant rebellion against the sovereignty of Yahweh and His kingdom. Genesis shows that despite the rebellion of humanity against Yahweh, He is still their sovereign God as He rules and judges (Dan. 4:17) them in their rebellion at the time of the flood (Gen. 6) and the Tower of Babel (Gen. 11:1-9). Yahweh had not lost his sovereignty over creation to Satan; rather, creation’s sinfulness separates it relationally from Him as a righteous and holy God. The fall of humanity and the dominion of Satan over creation must be dealt with, not by an epic battle but by removing sin from the world.

It is through Abraham that Yahweh chose to begin to restore His kingdom on earth to once again reflect what is true in heaven (Gen. 12:1-4). Yahweh promised to make the descendants of Abraham into a great nation of kings who would rule over the earth, reflecting His image and representing His will. Yahweh would instill His character into Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and his twelve sons so that they might produce a nation that reflected His nature. As He did this, He also used them to bless the surrounding nations that they encountered so that they would conform to Him as well. The account of the patriarchs ends with the prophecy and promise of Yahweh that one day, from the line of Abraham and through the tribe of Judah (one of the twelve sons and tribes of Jacob), the ruling scepter would come to the one called Shiloh who would truly represent Yahweh’s righteous kingship (Gen. 49:8-12).

After the Israelites were enslaved for four hundred years in Egypt, Yahweh clearly demonstrated His sovereignty over Egypt when He brought the plagues upon them. Through the plagues Yahweh attacked, defeated, and judged the pagan gods and the pharaoh of the most powerful and influential nation in the ancient Near East (Ex. 12:12; Num. 33:4). The exodus of the Israelites out of Egypt and their crossing of the Red Sea brought the final defeat of Egypt (Ex. 14). Through the exodus, not only did Yahweh redeem His people, but He also demonstrated His existence as the only true king, proving His right to name whomever He pleased as His regent on earth. After this event He brought them to Mount Sinai, where He appeared to them in great, holy, and powerful fire on the mountain and officially made them into His nation to bear His name as His regent on earth.

As sovereign King, Yahweh also gave them His righteous Law, which they were to obey, thus reflecting His righteousness to the world (Ex. 9:16). Their purpose, then, as His chosen nation was to bring the world under the kingship of Yahweh and conform it to His image through their own holy example (Ex. 19:3-6). However, once again Satan tried to destroy the image of God by leading the people into the worship of the golden calf (Ex. 32). Yahweh punished them, and they lost the right to all serve as His priests to the world. He instead established just the Levites as priests to spiritually guide and facilitate the holiness of the nation (Ex. 32:25-29; Num. 3:12-13).

Yahweh then led Israel into the land of Canaan, which He had promised to them, and used them to punish the Canaanites for their gross sins and take the land as their own where He would put His name on the land (Num. 6:27; 1 Kgs. 8:16; 9:6; 11:36). It was here that Israel was to begin reflecting the image of God onto the creation, bringing it into conformity with His will. However, the people failed again as they were seduced into sin by the Canaanite culture and its god Ba’al. Just as Adam had submitted to and served Satan in Yahweh’s garden on earth, so now Israel submitted to and served Ba’al in the Promised Land of Yahweh. Throughout Israel’s time in the land Yahweh continuously showed Himself superior to Ba’al with defeat after defeat (Jud. 6; 1 Sam. 5; 1 Kgs. 17-18; 2 Kgs. 10:18-28). Still, just as Adam had failed, Israel failed to unite as a people under godly rulers (Jud. 17:6; 18:1; 19:1; 21:25) who were to represent Yahweh. So Yahweh gave them kings from the tribe of Judah through David and his descendants, who would be led by the prophets so that they might become godly examples to the rest of the nation (2 Sam. 7). These kings would then be a promise to the people that one day the Messiah (anointed Savior and King representing Yahweh) would come and rule the nation of Israel, as well as rule over the nations of the world. However, these kings failed as well and led Israel into greater and greater sin and judgment (2 Kgs. 17:7-41; 25:8-30). Yahweh sent the prophets to warn and to discipline Israel, even while they also spoke of the day when the Messiah would come and establish the kingdom of Yahweh on earth (1 Chr. 17:7-15; Isa. 9:6-7; 11:1-6; 32:1-20; 33:17-24; 40:1-11; 61:1-2; Jer. 23:1-8; 33:14-26; Ez. 34:11-31; 45:7-16; 46:2-18; Dan. 2:35-36, 44-45; 9:24-27; Hos. 3:4-5; Amos 9:11-12; Mic. 5:1-6; Zec. 3:8-10; 9:9-10; 14:4-7).

It is thus in the arrival of Jesus Christ that all the hopes of the Messiah and the kingdom of Yahweh would be fulfilled. Jesus spent His ministry on earth revealing and validating Himself as the kingdom of Yahweh that had come (Matt. 3:1-17; Lk. 5:7-26; 6:1-5, 16-21; 9:10-17; 9:28-36; Jn. 2:1-11). Consistently and continually Jesus performed miracles of healing the sick, controlling the weather, and raising people from the dead in order to validate that He was two things: the earthly Messiah in the way that Israel was supposed to be and the sovereign God of creation dwelling on earth.

By coming as a man in the line of Abraham, Judah, and David, Jesus showed that He had the right to be the earthly king whom Yahweh had chosen to lead the nation of Israel. Being God gave Jesus the right to bring heaven and earth together into one throne and one king sitting on that throne (2 Sam. 7; Dan. 7:9-14; Ps. 110; Lk. 20:41-44; Acts. 2:14-41). But before He could bring the kingdom of Yahweh in all of its fullness and glory, He would also have to die, as a human Himself, for humanity’s sins and rebellions. Where Yahweh had chosen humanity to represent Him on earth and they had failed, Yahweh in Jesus would represent humanity on the cross and save them all. Only when humanity was made righteous again, as they were in the Garden of Eden, could they be in Christ and regain their right to rule and subdue creation in His name (Matt. 28:16-20; Jn. 14:20; Eph. 2:5-6; 6:11-18; 1 Jn. 4:4). However, whereas Israel’s kingship was a political one, the believer’s is spiritual. Believers have been called to wage war against the spiritual forces of the world and the darkness (Eph. 6:11-18) until Christ returns to bring the physical kingdom of Yahweh.

It is in Jesus’ second coming that He will then reestablish the kingship of Yahweh on earth, punish those who rebelled against Him, and restore the Kingdom of Yahweh in its fullness. Jesus will come on a white horse as sovereign King and Lord over creation and do away with Satan (Rev. 19:11-16; 20:7-10). It is then that He will redeem the creation and bring a new sky and earth (Rev. 21:1-8). Then the new Jerusalem and temple will descend onto the earth as a symbol that the Kingdom of Yahweh has come to earth (Rev. 21:9-14), where the Lamb will be the light of the world dwelling with humanity as it did in the Garden of Eden (Rev. 22:1-5). The placement of the Tree of Life in this city will show that the Garden of Eden has been restored as well. Thus Yahweh through and in Jesus will establish His sovereign kingship on earth as it is in heaven (Matt. 6:9-13).

The Redemption of Humanity and Creation

The second major concept in the Bible is that Yahweh, as a relational God, desires to redeem humanity and creation so He might again dwell with and bless them. Yahweh demonstrated this primarily through the creation of the Garden of Eden and the covenants that He made with humanity. In the beginning Yahweh chose to create humanity with a uniqueness that no other thing in creation had: to be made in His image, to reflect the qualities of His nature and character, and to execute His will on earth (Gen. 1:26-30). The Adamic was the first covenant that Yahweh made with humanity, and it allowed them to dwell with Him and rule over His creation as long as they reflected His will and character onto the creation in obedience. The Garden of Eden became both the place for and sign of this covenantal relationship. However, humanity ruined their relationship with Yahweh and the image of God that they bore by disobeying Him in the garden (Gen. 3:1-7) and continuously from that point on. Because of their sin, they experienced death (separation from Yahweh and, consequently, the meaning and blessings of life He brought). They were then cast out of the Garden of Eden, separated from His presence (Gen. 3:23-24). Throughout the rest of the Bible, Yahweh’s land would be directly related to His presence. Through the sins of Adam, Cain, the Tower of Babel, and Israel, humanity is seen constantly as being scattered and without a land in which to belong (Gen. 4:9-16; 11:5-9; Num. 14:20-25; 2 Kgs. 17:7-41; 25:8-30). The problem then with humanity was their sin and rebellion against Yahweh, which had ruined their relationship with Him and thus their relationship with each other and creation. So only when sin is dealt with could humanity be redeemed back to Yahweh and then bring the redemption of creation.

Though Yahweh as sovereign King had every right to do away with humanity because of their sin, He was motivated by His love to enter into creation and history and constantly show grace and mercy to His people in His desire to redeem them. Yahweh demonstrated this first through the sacrificing of an animal, pouring out its blood (life) and atoning for Adam and Eve’s sin (Gen. 3:21). Yahweh showed here that only through the blood of an innocent life could sin be atoned for and humanity find redemption. At the time of Noah (Gen. 6:1-8) and through the Tower of Babel (Gen. 11:1-9), humanity showed their desire to resist a relationship with Yahweh as they tried to save themselves. Despite this, Yahweh saved humanity through the family of Noah in the flood (Gen. 7-9), and He chose Abraham and his descendants to be the instruments He would use to save all of humanity from their sin and rebellion at the Tower of Babel (Gen. 12:1-4). Yahweh established Abraham’s line to represent Him, to begin the restoration of the image of God, and to bring His kingdom to the world through the establishment of the Abrahamic Covenant (Gen. 12:1-4; 15). Through this unconditional covenant Yahweh promised Abraham that He would make him into a great nation, give him land and personal blessings, and bless the world through him. This covenant became the foundation for everything that Yahweh would do to redeem the world. Abraham’s descendants would be the people whom Yahweh chose to represent Him and thus bring humanity back into a covenantal relationship with Himself.

Yahweh’s greatest act of redemption in the First Testament was the exodus of Israel out of Egypt (Ex. 14). Here Yahweh entered into creation and history and made Himself visible through the Shekinah glory (the pillar of cloud and smoke; Ex. 13:21-22; 14:24; Deut. 33:16; Ps. 99:6-7). He led Israel out of Egypt, a symbol of sin and death (Ex. 13:3), and through the Red Sea, symbolizing their water baptism (1 Cor. 10:1-5), which cleansed them of their past life. He then brought Israel to Mount Sinai where He came and spoke to them and officially anointed them as His people, just as He had promised Abraham. Yahweh promised to make them His special people, a kingdom of priests, and a holy people (Ex. 19:3-6). To accomplish this He gave them the tabernacle, the Law, and the sacrificial system. The tabernacle (and later the temple) was a recreation of the Garden of Eden. Though the people were limited in how close they could get to Yahweh and how much they could experience of Him, the tabernacle became a place where Yahweh put His name and dwelt with them. The tabernacle would teach them about His holiness and what it meant to come into His presence, and it would be a symbol of hope for when the dwelling of Yahweh and His kingdom would come to earth in its fullness. It was in the tabernacle that the Shekinah glory of Yahweh dwelt, thereby purifying Israel.

The Law meant to teach them the righteousness of Yahweh and act as a mirror to reveal how far from His righteousness they were. As they came to know the Law and tried to put it into practice, their sin nature would resist more and more, and they would fail again and again. Through this they would become more aware—more than any other nation—of their sin nature and the need for it to be dealt with. In this way, they bore the weight of sin and the judgment of Yahweh (Isa. 42:1-4; 49:1-6; 50:4-9).

The sacrificial system would teach them about the sovereignty of Yahweh and the means of atonement. The offering up to Yahweh of their first and best in animals and grain showed that they acknowledged Him as the source of their provisions and blessings. Likewise, the Day of Atonement taught them that blood was necessary to atone for their sins, escape the judgment of Yahweh, and enter into His presence (Lev. 16). The firstborn of every family of Israel was meant to be a priest, mediating between Yahweh and humanity and bringing the two together into the nation of Israel. The tabernacle, Law, and sacrificial system became the Mosaic Covenant, which was, in fact, never meant to save them but to expose their sin.

Yahweh then brought Israel into Canaan, a land full of sin and evil, and gave them the ability to join Him in redeeming the land and its people, restoring both to what Yahweh had originally intended for them to be. They were to make the land of Canaan into a larger version of the tabernacle, the beginning of the Garden of Eden being returned to earth. There He would make them into a great nation through which all the other nations would pass along their trade routes, and these nations would see Yahweh’s glory and desire to be a part of His kingdom. However, as Israel lived in the land of Canaan, they constantly fell away from Yahweh into idolatry, sin, and rebellion. Yet He would constantly show patience and save them again and again from their own bondage by sending judges, kings, and, mostly, the prophets—all saviors to rescue them and bring them back into a relationship with Him. Ultimately, due to their constant rebellion, He judged them, sending them into exile. And though they would return to their land seventy years later, they never came out of exile having what the Abrahamic Covenant had promised. In exile they would begin to long for and anticipate the coming of the Messiah (anointed savior and king representing Yahweh), who would be what they could never be.

Yahweh’s greatest act of redemption in the Second Testament was accomplished on the cross through Jesus Christ. Jesus came as the light of Yahweh (Shekinah fire) and dwelt among humans (Jn. 1:1-4, 14; the word dwelt is tabernacle in the Greek). Throughout His ministry, Jesus revealed Himself as both the presence and the glory of Yahweh. Jesus connected Himself to the tabernacle and the temple when He told the Pharisees that the temple—speaking of His own body—would be destroyed and rebuilt in three days (Jn. 2:18-22). Jesus took the tabernacle as the sign of Yahweh’s dwelling and the restoration of the Garden of Eden and claimed that He was the fulfillment of this sign. Later on a hill in Jerusalem, Jesus unveiled His true glory (Shekinah fire) to James, John, and Peter, proving to them that He was the glory of Yahweh in human form (Lk. 9:28-36).

Jesus also came to do what Israel could never do: fulfill the requirements of the covenants of Yahweh. As a descendant of Abraham, Jesus could become Israel and receive the blessings of the Abrahamic Covenant. As the God-man, Jesus met the righteous requirements of the Mosaic Law (Mosaic Covenant) by living a sinless life. Because Jesus was a descendant and representative of Israel, Israel also becomes righteous in the sight of the Law.

Jesus demonstrated Himself as the second and more perfect Adam when He was tested by Satan and resisted him, remaining sinless (Matt. 4:1-11). Where Adam and Eve had failed in their testing and Israel had failed in their wilderness journey and again in the land of Canaan, Jesus triumphed without sin. Jesus would be the Adam that the world had never had, and He would represent Yahweh and man perfectly as the God-man, who had the right to be the high priest of creation. Thus, as the perfect sacrifice, His body bore the sins of Israel, and His blood atoned for their sins (Lk. 22:14-20; Rom. 3:25; Heb. 2:17; 1 Pet. 2:24-15; 1 Jn. 1:17; Rev. 1:5). Jesus as the God-man brought Yahweh and Israel together into a New Covenant, where Israel would be able to dwell with Yahweh and be what He wanted to them to be to the rest of humanity and creation (Matt. 5:13-16; 28:16-20). Jesus had become their high priest on the cross, mediating between God and man and bringing the two together in Himself as the temple. Only when humanity was made righteous again, as they had been in the Garden of Eden, could they reenter the Garden of Eden that Jesus was recreating in Himself as the Kingdom of Yahweh.

Because of Jesus’ work on the cross, the Holy Spirit (Shekinah fire) was now able to come and indwell the new believers as the new temple of Yahweh (Eph. 2:11-22; 1 Pet. 2:4-10). This new temple of Yahweh is to be a light to the world, redeeming it and restoring the Garden of Eden to all parts of creation (Matt. 28:16-20; Acts 1:6-8). To those who believe, the cross then becomes their exodus out of their slavery to sin and death, where they are baptized and led by the Holy Spirit into the Promised Land to wage war against evil and sin and herald the kingdom of Yahweh on earth.

However, because Israel rejected Jesus as their fulfillment and representative, He chose to make the Gentile believers into His representatives, who became the Church. Unlike Israel, which was one ethnicity, nation, and land, the Church is made up of every ethnicity, nation, and land. The Church’s being in Christ enables it to fulfill the great commission of going to all peoples and places, bringing all into Christ to experience His redemption and indwelling (Matt. 28:16-20).

When Christ comes back, He will come with the clouds (Shekinah cloud; Dan. 7:13-14; Matt. 24:30; 25:31; 26:63-65; Rev. 1:12-16; 14:14) and bring the full kingdom of Yahweh to earth. It is at this point that the nation of Israel will accept their Messiah, and they and the Church will be brought together in Christ. Jesus will then redeem creation through the new sky and earth (Rev. 21:1-8), making all of creation into the Garden of Eden again. After this, the new Jerusalem and temple will come down to earth, symbolizing that Yahweh is now dwelling with humanity in His fullness (Rev. 9-14).

The Nation of Israel as the Chosen Seed

Yahweh first established His creation through the concept of the “seed” through the notion of “after its own kind.” Just as the seed of plants grows according to its own kind (Gen. 1:11-12), so do the animals according to their own kind (Gen. 1:21, 24) and humans to their own kind (Gen. 1:28). However, Yahweh created humans to reflect Himself (Gen. 1:26-28) by creating them as His image. Through the divine mandate—to be fruitful and multiply (Gen. 1:28)—they were to duplicate His image, according to their own kind. When they ate the forbidden fruit (seed), they enslaved themselves to the serpent (Satan), establishing themselves as their own lawmakers separate from Yahweh and becoming a rival kingdom (seed). But the gracious Yahweh intervened by putting enmity between the seed of the serpent and the seed of humanity (Gen. 3:15). Thus, the two rival kingdoms have been established: Satan’s seed, to which humanity would always be drawn through its fallen nature; and Yahweh’s seed, which was implanted in humanity by being made in the image of God and through His redemption of its soul (Gen. 3:15, 21). This is seen through the seed of Abel, which reproduces Eve’s love for Yahweh, and the seed of Cain, which reproduces Eve’s enmity against Yahweh.

Genesis begins to develop the genealogies (seeds) of humanity, through Adam to Seth, to Noah, until it came to Abraham, whose offspring Yahweh would choose to bless as a fruitful nation (Gen. 12:2; 17:5). This promise would be fulfilled physically, through Abraham’s biological descendants (Isaac, Ishmael, the Midianites, the Edomites, etc.), and spiritually, through those who reproduced his faith. Yet specifically, it would be through Isaac and Jacob that Yahweh would bring about Israel, His chosen nation. Out of the sons of Jacob, Yahweh chose Judah to lead this nation as the chosen ruler (Gen. 49:8-12).

From Judah Yahweh chose David and his line to lead all of Israel and the world and to become the chosen line (2 Sam. 7) that would lead to the ultimate chosen seed. It was from this line that Jesus was born to Joseph and Mary, both descendants of David (Matt. 1:1-16: Lk. 3:23-38). As the Son of God (Jn. 1:1-4; Heb. 1:1-4), a descendant of Adam and David, Jesus brought the seed of God, humanity, and Israel all into one person. It is through Jesus that everything that humanity was meant to be and accomplish was fulfilled. Thus all those who are found in Jesus Christ become a part of the chosen family when the Holy Spirit (seed) is implanted in them (Ezk. 11:17-21; 1 Cor. 3:16; 6:19; Rom. 8:9) and become born again into a new life (Jn. 3:5-8; 2 Cor. 5:17). As a result, the believers become what Yahweh meant for them to be because Christ is in them (Col. 1:27). Though Yahweh has chosen to work through the Church (Gentile believers), the second coming of Christ will be marked by the nation of Israel coming back to Yahweh (Rev. 7:1-8). In the end, it is through Christ that spiritual Israel and the Gentile believers will be brought together into one family (Rom. 9-11; Eph. 2:11-22). When Yahweh chose the line of Abraham to redeem the whole world, His intention was to also redeem the chosen line of Israel.

The Foreshadowing and Arrival of Jesus Christ

The redemption of humanity and the restoration of the kingdom of Yahweh are both found in the person of Jesus Christ. And since the Bible’s focus is on the development of these two ideas, everything in the Bible foreshadows the coming of Christ and His work on the cross: starting with the blood atonement after the fall; continuing through the exodus, the building of the tabernacle, and the institution of the sacrificial system; building in the prophecies of the prophets; and concluding with the incarnation of Christ Himself (Lk. 24:27; 1 Pet. 1:10-11).

Much of the foreshadowing of Jesus Christ in the Bible has already been discussed in the previous metanarratives. This metanarrative serves as the foundation and strand that ties all the other metanarratives together and is developed primarily through typology. Typology is a special kind of symbolism (when one thing represents something else) in the Bible in which a person, place, thing, or event in the First Testament foreshadows a person, place, thing, or event in the Second Testament (most often Christ and the cross). These typologies were originally placed in the First Testament in order to paint a picture of what Christ would be like when He came and what He would accomplish in His ministry (Lk. 24:25-27). (For more on typology, see the Typology in the Bible article.)

Though Jesus is not revealed until the Second Testament, the foundation for His arrival is laid in Genesis. We see the first hint of the need of Jesus’ sacrificial blood to save humanity when Yahweh sacrificed an animal and used its blood to atone for Adam and Eve’s sin after the fall (Gen. 3:21). Jesus can be seen in the typology of Abraham and his willingness to sacrifice his own son (Gen. 22); in Joseph’s righteous character that allowed Yahweh to make him a ruler who would save the descendants of Abraham (Gen. 42-46); and in Judah, who was willing to sacrifice himself for the sake of his brothers (Gen. 46). Finally, Yahweh specifically prophesied the coming of Jesus in a figure called Shiloh, who would come one day to reestablish the kingdom of Yahweh on Earth forever (Gen. 49:8-12).

Moses, as prophet, leader, and mediator for Yahweh’s people, was a type of Jesus, who functions in a similar but more exalted capacity (Deut. 18:15; Acts 3:22; 1 Cor. 10:2; Gal. 3:27; 3:19; 1 Tim. 2:5). As mentioned earlier, the exodus out of Egypt and the crossing through the Red Sea were also a typology of our exit out of sin and our water baptism (1 Cor. 10:1-5). The tabernacle and many of its articles were typological of Christ and His work on the cross (Acts 17:24; Col. 2:16-17; Heb. 6:19; 8-10) as well as the Church (Acts 15:16, 17; 1 Cor. 3:16; 1 Tim. 3:15). The water from the rock in the wilderness (Ex. 17:6) was a preview of the life-sustaining water provided by our Lord (Jn. 4:14; 1 Cor. 10:4). The manna from heaven in the wilderness (Ex. 16:14-16) was a type of the spiritual “bread of life” who came down from heaven to nourish humanity (Jn. 6:32).

The prophets (1 Kgs. 19:16), priests (Ex. 28:41), and kings (1 Sam. 10:1) were anointed in anticipation of the coming of the Anointed One (Dan. 9:25-26), who is Prophet (Acts 3:22), Priest (Heb. 3:1), and King (Rev. 17:14). These are just some of the many examples of types that foreshadowed the coming of Jesus and how He fulfilled them in His first coming and will again in a more complete way in His second coming.

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