by One bearing the theophanic name [41.4; 43.10, 13; 48.12; 51.12]. Vicarious suffering will be the ransom-price of the people of God in the new exodus ; only here the lamb is the Servant-Mediator himself!In the new exodus, the people of God will once again inaugurate their sojourn by passing through the sea:‘thus saith the Lord, which maketh a way in the sea, and a path in the mighty waters . . . When thou passestthrough the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee’ [43.16, 2; cf.44.27; 50.2; 51.9-11, 15; 63.11, 12]. The new exodus will bring a return to the wilderness for the Israel of God. In the land in between, the pilgrim people of God will sojourn: ‘Behold I will do a new thing . . . I willeven make a way in the wilderness’ [43.19; cf. 40.3;
2.14; 13.5].God will once again provide water in the desert for the pilgrims: ‘I will give waters in the wilderness,and rivers in the desert, to give drink to my people, my chosen’ [43.20; cf. 41.17, 18; 35.6b, 7; 48.21].The new exodus brings the pilgrims to the mountain of the Lord [56.7; 65.25]. Here, the eschatologicalsuzerain [41.21; 44.6] once again comes down to meet with his people [64.1; cf.
2.10; 8.3]. He comes awesomely and terribly [29.6; 30.27-33; 50.3; 64.1-3; cf.
9.14], but also condescendingly, graciously tabernacling in the midst of his people [4.6; 7.14; cf.
37.27,28]. The Lord enters into a new covenant with the eschatological pilgrims [cf.
31.31-34; compare theeschatological meal in
24.11]. At last, the new exodus will conclude with the entranceinto and possession of the land [49.8, 9; cf.
2.15]. The emancipated captives will settle permanently inthe eschatological land of milk and honey.The pattern of prophetic judgment: a reversal and a return of the old Israel to the place of redemptive— historical beginning. The pattern of prophetic eschatology: from the point of the old beginning, a new beginning — a new exodus, a new passage of the sea, a new sojourn in the wilderness, a new covenant, anew entrance into the land.The law and the prophets witness to Jesus Christ [
24.27, 44, 45]; he comes as the one who fulfils thehistory of redemption [
5.17]. The eschatological hope of the prophets finds its accomplishment in theperson and work of Christ. We should not be surprised to find that the great act of redemption in the New Testament is described in terms of exodus imagery. The failure of the redemptive history of the former agenecessitates the advent of One whose history is marked by obedience, righteousness, success and victory.In these last days, God has sent his true Son to perfect all that was wanting in his former ‘son’ [
11.1]. The history of Jesus is the history of the true Israel of God; he embodies and recapitulatesin his history the history of Israel. Both personally and corporately [or federally], he undergoes an
9.31] on behalf of the Israel of God [
6.16] of the end time.The pattern of gospel fulfilment is a marvel of redemptive — historical continuity. Did the old Israel, God’sson of the former times, conclude its history by returning to the point of beginning? So too, the true Israel,God’s Son of these last times, begins his history by going down into Egypt. In the ‘exodus’ of Jesus fromEgypt, the new age has dawned; the fulness of time has arrived. Matthew’s insight is a stroke of inspiredgenius [2.15 — ‘out of Egypt have I called my son’]. Because
Son comes up out of Egypt, the new exodushas arrived.Jesus not only comes up out of Egypt, he comes to the wilderness of Judaea in the days of John the Baptist.The wilderness too had been a place of failure for the old Israel. Here, in the desert, a new beginning must be made [cf.
1.2, 3]. Jesus passes through the waters ‘to fulfil all righteousness’ [
3.15]. The former age in the history of redemption has been left behind; the old age of failure, disobedienceand judgment has been swallowed up — drowned! Jesus returns to the wilderness to submit to the assaultsof the enemy. For forty days and forty nights, the true Israel is attacked by the Adversary. Again, a new beginning is made. In God’s true Son, the desert becomes a place of victory. The assaults of the tempterare resisted and the new Israel emerges triumphant. The call of the Baptist to return to the wilderness isfulfilled in the One who comes to the wilderness to inaugurate a new beginning for his people.The eschatological finality and eschatological newness of the age which dawns in Christ is depicted instill more exodus imagery. Jesus comes as the eschatological Servant of the Lord. As the Mediator of salvation, he is commissioned via theophany [
1.10, 11]. Yet remarkably, he himself bears