Old Testament Quotations in the New Testament, Part 2
‘Now in those days John the Baptist came, preaching in the wilderness of Judea, saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” For this is the one referred to by Isaiah the prophet, saying, “The voice of one crying in the wilderness, ‘Make ready the way of the Lord, make His paths straight!'” ’ Matt. 3:1-3
We pick up where we left off in our previous study on Old Testament quotes as used in the New Testament.
We’ve been looking into how some religious scholars quantify or categorize the quote as used in the New Testament into the seven main designations. Again, it serves us well to know how folks in the religious market place are taught to think. We’ve discussed Midrash (searching the text for clarification beyond the obvious) and Light and Heavy (if it’s true in a light situation, it proves important in a greater or heavier situation). Number three in the exegetical septuplets is Equivalence. The rule of equivalence is seen when “passages clarify one another if they share common vocabulary.” (Evans, The Old Testament in the New, pg 132) An example of Equivalence cited is 1 Peter 2:4-8, particularly verses six through eight, and the parallel verbiage in the Old Testament contained in Isaiah 28:16, Psalm 118:22 and Isaiah 8:14. Here, stone, cornerstone, stone of stumbling, are used in “equivalent regulation” or shared common vocabulary. To most of us, it just seems these verses point out Jesus Christ is the precious cornerstone that the unbelieving stumble over, right? Numero cuatro is Pesher or sometimes labeled as Midrash Pesher. This designation came into vogue among the “learned” after the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls at Qumran. The inhabitants at Qumran were an Essene sect, isolationists who had separated themselves from the rest of the Jewish community. The prevailing view among the Essenes concerning the Old Testament was that “scripture was viewed as containing mysteries in need of explanation. The “pesher” was the explanation of the mystery” (Evans, TOTITN, pg 132) ; this method usually involves prophecies. You can see the similarity in this category to Midrash. Examples of this are Acts 2:17-21 and Joel 2:28-32 concerning the Holy Spirit; and Mark 12:10-11 and Psalms 118:22-23 where Jesus tells a parable and communicates that the son (Jesus Himself) of the vineyard owner (God, the Father) is the chief corner and the stone the builders (unbelieving Jews) rejected. Next is Allegorical. This should seem pretty straightforward. An allegory is simply symbolic representation or symbolic expression of meaning in a story. Galatians 4:24-31 is an example of this class. The last two, Sensus plenior and Double Fulfillment next week.