THE SALVATION OF ISRAEL AS A TYPE
By Nana Yaw Aidoo
A study of Biblical types and anti-types is a most profitable and faith building study that all students of the Book ought to be involved in. By studying how Israel was saved from Egyptian bondage, we get a picture of how we who are alive today are saved from being slaves of sin to becoming slaves of righteousness.
The exodus of the nation Israel from Egyptian bondage is one of the most popular records in the Bible. Due to famine, the house of Jacob moved to Egypt (Gen.46) and overtime, they grew into a great nation. With Joseph being very influential in Egypt, the Israelites were given the best of the land in Egypt and dwelt in Goshen (Gen.47:6), where they "were fruitful and increased abundantly, multiplied and grew exceedingly mighty" (Exo.1:7), even after the death of Joseph.
However, there arose a new king over Egypt who did not know Joseph (Exo.1:8). Not knowing Joseph, he subjected the Israelites to harsh treatment and made them slaves. By the providence of God, Moses was born around this time and God for an eighty (80) year period - forty (40) in Egypt and forty (40) in Midian - prepared him for the role of leading Israel out of Egyptian bondage.
As the record goes, God sent Moses from Horeb the mountain of God (Exo.3:1) to Egypt as a redeemer, just as He sent Christ from heaven to this world to redeem that which was lost (Luke 19:10). After a long tussle, which included God punishing Egypt with ten (10) plagues, the Egyptian king (a new one - see Exo.2:23) reluctantly released the Israelites from slavery.
There was another problem besides the Egyptian king's stubborness - whether or not the Israelites would believe Moses. (Exo.4:1). The people however heard Moses, believed him, changed their minds and followed him to the banks of the Red Sea after the Pharaoh had reluctantly released them. (Exo.4:31; 13:17-14:2). Likewise, we must hear Christ (Luke 9:35; Acts 3:22-23), believe Him (John 14:1) and change our minds from sin (Luke 13:3).
Although the Israelites had heard Moses, believed him and followed him to the banks of the Red Sea, they were still under the dominion of the Pharaoh, so long as they remained on the Egyptian side of the Red Sea. And as sure as night follows day, the Egyptians would have taken the Israelites captive again, if they met them still on the Egyptian side of the Red Sea. (Exo.14:3-12). The Israelites were not yet safe so long as their redemption was incomplete and their redemption could not be complete, until they "...all passed through the sea" and "...were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea." (1 Cor.10:1-2). Their passing through the sea is called a "baptism" because the sea stood on either side of them and the cloud covered them and thus, they were "under the cloud" (1 Cor.10:1). This incident was an immersion/covering, which indicates to us the right "action" of baptism.
It was only after they had "all passed through the sea," "were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea" and got to the other side, that they became safe, and completely redeemed, since they were no longer on the Egyptian side of the Red Sea and thus were no longer under the Pharaoh's dominion. It was only after they "were baptized into Moses" that "the LORD saved Israel that day out of the hand of the Egyptians" (Exo.14:30). And it was only after they "were baptized into Moses" that they sung the song of salvation. (Exo.15).
In like manner, if we hear Christ, believe Him, change our minds from sin and yet remain unbaptized into Christ, we remain unsaved since our redemption is incomplete. Our redemption can only be complete when we like the Israelites who were baptized into Moses, are baptized into Christ. The apostle Paul wrote;
"Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life....But God be thanked that though you were slaves of sin, yet you obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine to which you were delivered. And having been set free from sin, you became slaves of righteousness." (Rom.6:3-4; 17-18).
Notice if you would, that just as Israel rejoiced the joy of salvation after (not before) they "were baptized into Moses," so the Ethiopian eunuch rejoiced the joy of his salvation, after (not before) he was baptized by Philip into Christ. (Acts 8:26-39).
So long as we remain unbaptized, we are still under the dominion of darkness. (Col.1:13) and we ought to be baptized into Christ, in order to be translated from the dominion of darkness into the kingdom of Christ.