O Come, True Deliverer
Open Your Bible
Exodus 3:1-10, Numbers 21:4-9, John 3:1-21, Hebrews 3:2-6
The Bible is filled with something theologians call “typology.” I call it completely amazing. In the Old Testament we see the foreshadowing of Christ personified in Adam, Moses, David, and many others. These men who prefigured Christ teach us who He is and prepare us to recognize Christ when we see Him. The complexity and depth of the Bible in the midst of its perfect simplicity thrills my heart.
While believers prior to Christ could see shadows of Him in prophets, priests, kings, and judges, we have the advantage of looking back on the fulfillment that the heroes of the Old Testament longed to see. Nehemiah rebuilt the wall, longing to know what we can easily read everyday. David trusted God, yearning to see the Messiah come. Moses led Israel out of Egypt but ached to see the fulfillment of God’s promises. He saw Israel delivered from the slave-houses of Egypt, but we have seen deliverance from the slave-house of sin and death. We have seen all these longings answered in the person of Christ; their deliverance foreshadowed our own deliverance.
When He encountered Moses as the burning bush, God declared:
“I have observed the misery of my people in Egypt, and have heard them crying out because of their oppressors. I know about their sufferings, and I have come down to rescue them from the power of the Egyptians and to bring them from that land to a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey” (Exodus 3:7–8).
So also, Christ came to deliver us; He has seen our misery, heard our cries, and known our sufferings. Therefore, “Jesus is considered worthy of more glory than Moses, just as the builder has more honor than the house” (Hebrews 3:3). In His greatest act of deliverance, He came down to rescue us from bondage, and now leads us to the land of promise. Christ Himself leads this exodus, and we follow after Him as His flock. He is the true Shepherd, who has set us free.
Therefore, as we celebrate His coming, we lift our voices to Christ, our true Deliverer, echoing this antiphon, an ancient poem of the early church:
O Lord, and leader of the House of Israel,
who appeared to Moses in the fire of the burning bush
and gave him the law on Sinai:
Come and redeem us with an outstretched arm.
He is worthy of all honor, glory, power, and dominion. This Christmas, as we celebrate Christ’s birth, we rejoice in the deliverance He has accomplished. We rejoice that the desire of the ages has been fulfilled and we have been set free.