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And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. John 8:32

Deliverance From Bondage

By H. A. (Buster) Dobbs

The Old Testament contains types of New Testament anti-types. A type is a "representative form" or "characteristic" of something else. There are striking similarities between the liberation of Israel from Egyptian captivity and the freedom enjoyed in Christ from the slavery of sin. Judaism was never intended by God to be His final revelation to man, but it contains figures, types, patterns, shadows and examples of New Testament counterparts (1 Corinthians 10:1-11; Hebrews 10:1).

Old Testament types perfectly fit the New Testament church and its doctrine. Therefore, one can learn valuable principles relating to the Lord's Church and its teaching by examining Old Testament types. Types confirm that the church of the first century is the fulfillment of the long standing will of God (Ephesians 3:10-11).

The background to the deliverance of Israel from Egyptian slavery begins when Joseph invited his father and brothers to resort from famine to the land of Goshen in Egypt (Genesis 46:27, [70 souls]; 47:1-12). Later, a different line of kings ruled Egypt, during which time the Israelites were enslaved. Moses was born during this period of oppression. Eighty years later, while a shepherd in the wilderness of Sinai, to which area he fled from Egypt 40 years earlier, Moses was commissioned by God to liberate Israel (Exodus 4).

By the mighty hand of God, Egypt was punished and Moses was enabled to lead Israel across the Red Sea to freedom. These points especially need emphasis: (1) All the power at the command of Pharaoh was ineffective in his argument with God, (2) Pharaoh's attempts to bargain with God were useless, and (3) Israel was not free from bondage on the near side of the Red Sea, but only after crossing the Red Sea like God through Moses commanded.

For the next 40 years Israel wandered, marching toward the promised land of Canaan. God refused Israelites entry into Canaan when they attempted to do so outside a covenant relationship with Him (Numbers 14:40-45). Finally, as every young Bible class student knows, Israel crossed the Jordan River and entered Canaan.

The anti-type of deliverance from Egyptian bondage is salvation from the slavery of sin. Every accountable soul is initially in the bondage of sin from which he cannot liberate himself without Divine help (Romans 3:23; 1 John 1:8). The Heavenly Father sent Jesus Christ to deliver men from sin (Romans 5:8-10; 1 John 4:9-10).

Even the mightiest of men cannot obtain redemption from sin or receive the promise of Heaven outside a covenant relationship with God. Further, God still refuses to bargain with his creation -- man. Jesus Christ alone is the door through which one must pass from the state of being lost to redemption (John 10:1,9; Colossians 1:13).

Just as the Red Sea served as the line of demarcation between Egyptian slavery and freedom for the Israelites, immersion in water (baptism) for the remission of sins is the line of demarcation today between the lost world and the saved (the church) (Acts 2:38; 1 Pet. 3:20-21). The Israelites rejoiced after crossing the Red Sea; the time for rejoicing today is after baptism (Acts 8:36-39).

Our Jordan River toward which faithful Christians march is Heaven with God. Tens of thousands of Israelites perished before Israel entered Canaan; by Divine inspiration the apostle Paul referred to the same (1 Corinthians 10:1-11), citing it as an example, capped with this warning: "Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall" (1 Corinthians 10:12).

Jesus, our Savior, will not compromise; He will refuse every alternative plan offered to him by man. No one can cross into Heaven who is outside a covenant relationship with God.

H. A. "Buster" Dobbs, email:
P. O. Box 690192
Houston, Texas 77269-0192
(281) 469-3540

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