TYPES OF CHRIST IN THE OLD TESTAMENT
Bible Study - Commentary by Jim Melough
2000 James Melough
“And when Abram heard that his brother was taken captive, he armed his
trained servants, born in his own house, three hundred eighteen, and pursued them
While certainly Abram’s
recovery of Lot would remind us that each one of us is his brother’s keeper, the
spiritual lesson goes far beyond that. Since
the life of the unbeliever and that of the carnal Christian are so similar, we may,
in the present context, view the captive Lot as the representative of both, for God
would have us see in his deliverance, a picture of Christ’s recovery of us from a
bondage far more terrible than that imposed by the Babylonian confederacy - the
bondage of Satan carrying us to eternal death.
Abram pursued the enemy to
Dan, and there the battle began. Dan
means judging: a judge, and it points to Calvary where the battle for your
soul and mine began, for it was there that the judgment due to us fell upon Christ.
For Him Calvary was “Dan,” the place of judgment.
There is one striking
difference, however, between the type and the reality.
Abram was assisted by three hundred eighteen trained servants. When the Lord Jesus Christ came to the place of judgment, “They
all forsook Him and fled” (Mk 14:50). He
fought the battle alone.
“And he divided himself against them, he and his servants, by night, and
smote them, and pursued them unto Hobah, which is on the left hand of Damascus.”
The battle at Calvary was
also fought in the darkness, “Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all
the land unto the ninth hour” (Mt 27:45).
The conflict ended at Hobah
which means hiding: affectionate, and it resulted in the utter defeat of the
enemy. The battle at Calvary also ended
at “Hobah” with the utter defeat of the enemy.
What began for Christ at “Dan,” the place of judgment, has become for us
“Hobah,” the hiding place where our sins are eternally hidden from God’s sight
under the precious blood of Christ, and where we have become the eternal objects of
His affection, for it is written, “A man shall be as an hiding place from
the wind, and a covert from the tempest” (Isa 32:2).
Christ is that Man, that Hiding Place.
Hobah’s being on the left
hand of Damascus teaches us something about our position in Christ.
The left is symbolic of weakness, but it is also the side nearest the heart,
the place of affection (the second meaning of Hobah).
Christ’s love in giving Himself for us has fully met all our need, supplied
everything our weakness will ever require; and in that place of shelter, that hiding
place, we rest in perfect peace, eternally secure.
While the exact location of
Hobah is uncertain, it is generally believed to have been on the west of Damascus,
and that too, is significant, for the west is always Scripturally connected with
approach to God.
silent is the sackcloth weaver, has also spiritual significance, for
sackcloth is synonymous with sorrow, mourning, and death.
For those spiritually in “Hobah,” the sackcloth weaver is silent.
Never again will his loom produce our covering, for we are clothed in
“And brought back all the goods, and also brought again his brother Lot, and
his goods, and the women also, and the people.”
Abram’s victory adumbrates
that of Christ. At Calvary all that had
been snatched from the first Adam was recovered by the last Adam.
The recovery of the goods as
well as the people would remind us that when Christ won the battle at Calvary He did
more than redeem men’s souls: He redeemed also the whole creation. It is to be remembered too, that the redeemed have been restored
to a better position than that which Adam had occupied.
He could, and did fall. The
believer can never lose his salvation. This
enrichment of the redeemed is symbolically declared in that those delivered by Abram
returned richer than they had been before, for he had recovered, not only what had
been seized from the cities of the plain, but in addition, all that had been in the
possession of the invaders.