Moses: a New Noah

I’m reading a delightful book right now by Peter Leithart called A House for My Name (Moscow, Idaho: Canon Press, 2000). It’s a required text for my Introduction to the Old Testament course. Leithart’s grasp of the relationship between Old Testament figures and events is remarkable. While writing my S.T.M. thesis I dabbled quite a bit in the textual and thematic parallels between the Patriarchal Narratives, but Leithart takes it to a different level. Here is one snippet that really caught my attention regarding Moses and his basket:

Jochebed puts her “beautiful son” in a basket lined with pitch. This reminds us of Noah’s ark. In Hebrew, the word for “basket” is the same as the word for “ark,” and this word is used only in these two places in the Old Testament. Noah’s ark, like Moses’, is lined with pitch (see Genesis 6:14). Moses is a new Noah. All around him the children of Israel are drowning, but Moses’ ark passes through the waters of death and gets to safety. The same water that kills other Israelite children saves Moses. After the flood, Noah and his family come out from the ark and enter a new creation. Moses, the one who has passed through the waters in an “ark,” is going to bring Israel out of Egypt and into a new world.

I’ll post a few more nuggets as I encounter them.


About Rev. Paul L. Beisel

Graduate of Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, IN in 2001 (M Div.) and 2004 (S.T.M.); LC-MS Pastor and Adjunct Instructor for John Wood Community College; Husband of Amy and father of Susan, Elizabeth, Martin, and Theodore.
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