On today’s Bible Answer Man broadcast (03/05/21), Hank picks up on the matter of typological prophecy, beginning with a prophecy that we read about yesterday in Matthew 2:15. It no doubt drives skeptics crazy to hear Christians say that this prophecy by Hosea is fulfilled in Immanuel rather than a prophecy that seems clearly fulfilled by ancient Israel. Yet that is precisely what St. Matthew contends in verse 15 of his Gospel. The overarching point Hank drives at is the need to make careful distinctions between predictive prophecies such as Micah 5:2 which finds fulfillment in Jesus’ birthplace in Bethlehem (Matthew 2:5) and prophecies such as Hosea 11:1 which are typologically fulfilled in Christ. Failure to recognize this difference has led more than a few to outright doubt and disbelief. Only when the elegance of typology is comprehended is the mystery of Scripture more fully apprehended.
Chapter 2 of Matthew’s Gospel ends with the fulfillment of what was said through the prophets, namely that Jesus would be called a Nazarene. This particular prophecy is exceedingly interesting, in that the city of Nazareth was a historically despised place. You can almost hear the echo of words spoken by Nathaniel, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” These words of Nathaniel are prophetic in and of themselves. Nazareth was a term of derision and thus was appropriately applied to the Messiah, about whom the prophets said, “He was despised and rejected by mankind, a man of suffering, and familiar with pain” (Isaiah 53:3).