Types, Antitypes, Signs, and Shadows, are Absolutely
for proper Scriptural Interpretation.
A 'Type' is: A Biblical
person, thing, action, event, ceremony, structure, furniture, color, or number,
that prefigures an 'antitype' of the same in the New
A likeness must exist between the 'type', the Old Testament prefigurement, also called an
'archetype', and the 'antitype', the New Testament reality. The 'antitype' is always greater.
Both are independent of each
'Types' are explained in Rom 5:14 and
Heb 9:9, as a figure, 1Cor 10:6 and 2Thess 3:9 and 2Pet 2:6, as examples, 1Cor
10:11 and Heb 11:19, as a type.
Much of Heb 11 is devoted to Old Testament 'typology'.
The Exodus, Ex
12:37-42, is a 'type' of Jesus Christ's return from
His flight to Egypt, Matt 2:21.
The manna in the desert, Ex 16:31, is a
'type' of its 'antitype' the Holy Eucharist, Matt
The water from the rock which Moses struck in Ex 17:1-6, is a 'type' of the Blood of Christ.
Uzzah died a physical
death by touching the Ark in 2Sam 6:7. That is a 'type' of dying a spiritual death by partaking of the Holy
Eucharist unworthily as in 1Cor 11:27. The reality of dying a spiritual death is
greater than the physical death of the 'type'.
The 'antitype' of the New Testament is vastly
superior to its 'type' in the Old Testament.
Adam is a 'type' of Christ, as is
Melchisedech, Moses, and King David.
referred to in the following verses, sometimes under different wording:
5:14, 1Cor 10:2,6,11, Heb 3:1 to 4:11,11:19, 1Thes 1:7 (pattern), 1Pet 3:21
1Pet 5:3 (pattern) (KJ - ensamples), Rev 21:1 to
The New Testament reality is infinitely greater
than the Old Testament prefigurement here.
A 'shadow' is an image cast by a person or
object, as that person or object intercepts a light source. The dictionary
defines a 'shadow' as, "an imperfect image or copy".
This is interesting as it shows the 'shadow' is
far removed from its cause, and is therefore to be seen as vastly inferior to
its 'antitype', the person or object which forms
A 'shadow' therefore could also be seen as a
'type', since it 'foreshadows', or prefigures an 'antitype'.
"For the Law, having but a 'shadow' of
the good things to come, and NOT THE EXACT IMAGE OF THE OBJECTS, is
NEVER ABLE BY THE SACRIFICES WHICH THEY OFFER CONTINUALLY, YEAR AFTER YEAR
THE SAME, TO PERFECT THOSE WHO DRAW NEAR:" Hebrews 10:1
This brings us to some interesting conclusions and provides an
important key to Bible understanding.
"Let no one, then, call you to account for what you eat or drink or in regard to
a festival or a new moon or a Sabbath. These are a shadow
of things to come, but the substance is of Christ."
The Sabbath is but just a shadow of the Sunday
The New Testament reality is greater
than the Old Testament prefigurement.
"For we are sojourners before thee, and strangers, as
were our fathers. Our days upon earth are as a 'shadow', and there is no stay." 1Chron
The short life on earth is the 'type' of the 'antitype' of eternal life promised to us
Eve is a 'type' of her
'antitype', the Blessed
Eve was created without original sin.
If Blessed Mary had
original sin as some say, then that would make her inferior to her 'type', Eve.
The New Testament reality is greater than the Old Testament
prefigurement, not inferior to it.
Eve is the
mother of all mankind, Gen 3:20. Her 'antitype', the Blessed Virgin Mary, is the
Mother of GOD, John 1:1,14.
The Ark of the Covenant of the Old Testament contained within it, the Word of
GOD written on stone tablets. It is a 'type' of the New Testament
'antitype', the New Ark of
the Covenant, the Blessed Virgin Mary, who 'contained' within her womb, the Word
of GOD incarnate.
The New Testament reality is
greater than the Old Testament prefigurement.
The manna in the desert is infinitely inferior to
the Holy Eucharist described in John 6:1-70.
If the Holy Eucharist were not
the Body, Blood, Soul, and divinity of Jesus Christ, then that would make the
Old Testament prefigurement, the miraculous manna, superior to its
it was necessary for the copies of the heavenly things to be purified with these
rites, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than
The context of this verse from 18-22 describes the
animal blood sacrifices of the Old Testament. Verse 23 clearly teaches that
"copies" of heavenly things is the "type" of the heavenly realities of a
better sacrifice. That "better" sacrifice could not be a symbol of the reality,
but of the reality itself.
Never in Scripture does an Old Testament
"type" point to a New Testament symbol.
New Testament reality is far greater than the Old Testament prefigurement.
More examples of 'types' and 'antitypes'...
GOD created man in His
image, Gen 1:27, and GOD was born in the image of man, Luke 2:7.
Ark and the flood, only 8 were saved through water, and Baptism, all potentially
saved through water, 1Pet 3:20-21.
The tree of the forbidden fruit in
Eden, Gen 3:6, which brought death to us all, and the tree of the cross which
brought eternal life to us all, Acts 5:30.
Isaac carried the wood of the
sacrifice on his back, Gen 22:6, and Jesus carried His cross on His back, John
Moses is rescued by a handmaid, Ex 2:5 and Jesus is born by a
handmaid, Luke 1:38.
Joshua got the better of the battle with Amalek as
long as Moses kept his hands raised, Ex 17:8-13.
The figure of Moses is a
'type' of the cross. This
is from the Epistle of Barnabas, Chapter XII.
Written by Bob Stanley, June 14,
Updated December 3, 2003
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