To Be a Prophet
The Lord thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken. Deuteronomy 18:15.
The hope of Israel was embodied in the promise made at the time of the call of Abraham, and afterward repeated again and again to his posterity, “In thee shall all families of the earth be blessed” (Genesis 12:3). As the purpose of God for the redemption of the race was unfolded to Abraham, the Sun of Righteousness shone upon his heart, and his darkness was scattered. And when, at last, the Saviour Himself walked and talked among the sons of men, He bore witness to the Jews of the patriarch’s bright hope of deliverance through the coming of a Redeemer. “Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day,” Christ declared; “and he saw it, and was glad” (John 8:56).
The same blessed hope was foreshadowed in the benediction pronounced by the dying patriarch Jacob upon his son Judah.
Through Moses, God’s purpose to send His Son as the Redeemer of the fallen race was kept before Israel. On one occasion, shortly before his death, Moses declared, “The Lord thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken.” Plainly had Moses been instructed for Israel concerning the work of the Messiah to come. “I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee,” was the word of Jehovah to His servant; “and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him” (Deuteronomy 18:15, 18).
About 40 days after the birth of Christ, Joseph and Mary took Him to Jerusalem, to present Him to the Lord, and to offer sacrifice.
The priest went through the ceremony of his official work. He took the child in his arms, and held it up before the altar. After handing it back to its mother, he inscribed the name “Jesus” on the roll of the firstborn. Little did he think, as the babe lay in his arms, that it was the Majesty of heaven, the King of glory. The priest did not think that this babe was the One of whom Moses had written, “A Prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever he shall say unto you” (Acts 3:22). He did not think that this babe was He whose glory Moses had asked to see. But One greater than Moses lay in the priest’s arms; and when he enrolled the child’s name, he was enrolling the name of One who was the foundation of the whole Jewish way of worship.