Full Text for Moses in the Gospel of John (Text)

Concordia Theological Quarterly Volume 77:1²2 January/April 2013 Table of Contents In Memoriam: Harold H. Zietlow (1926²2011) ............................................. 3 Epistles before Gospels: An Axiom of New Testament Studies David P. Scaer ....................................................................................... 5 Moses in the Gospel of John Christopher A. Maronde ................................................................... 23 Rectify or Justify? $5HVSRQVHWR-/RXLV0DUW\Q·V,QWHUSUHWDWLRQ of 3DXO·V5LJKWHRXVQHVV/DQJXDJH Mark P. Surburg ................................................................................. 45 The Eucharistic Prayer and Justification Roland F. Ziegler ................................................................................. 79 The Reception RI:DOWKHU·V7KHRORJ\LQWKH:LVFRQVLQ6\QRG Mark E. Braun .................................................................................... 101 Righteousness, Mystical Union, and Moral Formation in Christian Worship Gifford A. Grobien ............................................................................ 141 Theological Observer ..................................................................................... 165 *RG·V:RUG7KUHH9LHZV2QH%LEOH The Mission of the Church in an Age of Zombies One Nation under God: Thoughts RHJDUGLQJ´3DWULRWLF6HUYLFHVµ Book Reviews .................................................................................................. 184 Books Received ............................................................................................... 191 24 Concordia Theological Quarterly 77 (2013) ultimately and most importantly brings him to the fore as the instrument Yahweh uses to give Israel salvation, one who points to the Christ through his actions. Moses is used in John in a variety of ways, but ultimately in a positive sense in order to testify to Christ. I. Old Testament Figures in the Gospel of John While no other Old Testament figure receives as much prominence as Moses in the Gospel of John, Jacob, David, and Abraham also appear in the narrative. A study of Moses in John is not complete until these other fig-ures are first considered. The first appears in John 4, when Jesus stops for a rest at a well in Samaria. John is quite specific with the details he provides, telling us that the name of the town is Sychar, and then further informing us that this town was part of a property that Jacob had given to Joseph. Significantly-HVXVLVDFWXDOO\UHVWLQJXSRQ-DFRE·VZHOO -RKQ²6a). Finally, the woman whom Jesus encounters there brings Jacob into the GLVFXVVLRQWRFRXQWHU-HVXV·FODLPWRJLYHOLYLQJZDWHU´$UH\RXJUHDWHU(öïÀþ÷) than our father Jacob, who gave for us to drink and he drank from LWDQGKLVVRQVDQGKLVOLYHVWRFN"µ -RKQ  In response, Jesus points to the fact that the well only supplies temporal thirst, whereas the water he gives has an eternal quality in that it truly conquers death. Jesus uses the well provided by Jacob to point for-ward to the greater gift that he brings. He does not dispute the gift of the well, but puts it in proper perspective as a temporal gift that does not pro-vide what the woman ultimately needs, namely, eternal life. David appears in John 7, where Jesus engages his opponents in sharp verbal combat. He disrupts the Feast of Booths in Jerusalem with bold declarations concerning his identity, to which the crowd responds with varying degrees of rejection and acceptance of his testimony. When he departs the feast, he leaves confusion and turmoil in his wake. Some believe, while many continue to have questions. One of these questions FRQFHUQVWKHJHRJUDSKLFRULJLQRIWKH0HVVLDK2QHSHUVRQDVNV´'RHVWKHChrist come from Galilee?µ7KLVDQRQ\PRXVSHUVRQFRQWLQXHVE\FLWLQJWKHSURSKHF\´'LGQRWWKH6FULSWXUHVVD\WKDWWKH&KULVWFRPHVIURPWKHVHHGRI'DYLGDQGIURP%HWKOHKHPWKHYLOODJHZKHUH'DYLGZDV"µ -RKQ  The questioner calls upon David to testify against Jesus. If Jesus did not come from the line of David or from Bethlehem, he cannot be the Messiah. Interestingly, John (unlike Matthew) does not answer these specific FKDUJHVGLUHFWO\DGGUHVVLQJ-HVXV·RULJLQLQRWKHUZD\V 0DURQGH0RVHVLQ-RKQ·V*RVSHO 25 The culmination of these texts appears in John 8 with the appeal to Abraham2QFHDJDLQ-HVXV·LGHQWLW\LVLQTXHVWLRQ+LVRSSRQHQWVSURXG-ly claim Abraham as their father (8:39). They assert that they have been faithful to their father for they have been faithful to God (8:41). But Jesus turns Abraham against them, declaring that if they were the true spiritual offspring of Abraham, then they would not seek to kill him. Instead, they would do as Abraham GLGDQG´UHMRLFHµWRVHHWKHGD\RI&KULVW  Their rejection of Jesus demonstrates that they cannot trace their spiritual lineage to Abraham but to Satan. If they followed Abraham, they would IROORZ-HVXV7KLVEULQJVWKHPWRWKHFUX[RIWKHDUJXPHQW-HVXV·LGHQWLW\´Are you greater (öïÀþ÷) than our father Abraham, who died? . . . What do yRXPDNHRI\RXUVHOI"µ -RKQ -HVXVXOWLPDWHO\UHVSRQGVwith a powerful affirmation of hLVGLYLQHRULJLQ´7UXO\WUXO\,VD\WR\RXEHIRUHAbraham became, I AM ( ñà ïköÀ)µ -RKQ 2 This narrative concludes with many of the people rejecting Jesus, condemning him with the sentence of death as they unsuccessfully attempt to stone him. From this brief comparative study, we can draw several conclusions. First, we observe that Jesus must compete for prominence with the figures of the Old Testament, each of whom is presented by the speaker as more important than him. Jacob, David, and Abraham are all produced to testify as witnesses against Jesus. Second, the identity of Jesus is on trial, and these Old Testament figures are adduced as expert witnesses. Jesus coun-ters these claims by demonstrating not only that he is greater than the patriarchs, but also that these Old Testament figures actually point to him. They bear witness, but only to Jesus as Lord and God. Each of these ele-ments will become much PRUHH[SOLFLWZKHQH[DPLQLQJ-RKQ·VXVHRIMoses. II. Moses and = ÷ÁöøÏ -RKQ·VSURORJXHKDVLQWULJXHGVFKRODUVDQGOD\SHRSOHDOLNHWKURXJKRXWthe centuries for its beautiful language and deep theology. Here, John lays the foundation for the rest of his Gospel, describing the incarnationFthat great act of God becoming human flesh to deliver his sinful peopleFin language and themes that will occur again and again. Within this text, we encounter Ûþû&Ï IRUWKHILUVWWLPH´7KHODZ(= ÷ÁöøÏ) was given 2 For a discussion of this text in the wider context of the Johannine  ñà ïköÀ state-ments, see Richard Bauckham, The Testimony of the Beloved Disciple: Narrative, History, and Theology in the Gospel of John (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2007), 243²250. Bauckham concerns himself mainly with the seven absolute  ñà ïköÀ statements found in 4:26; 6:20; 8:24; 8:28; 8:58; 13:19; 18:5, 6, 8 (the last three are taken as one occurrence). 26 Concordia Theological Quarterly 77 (2013) ( ÷îÁùò) through Moses (îó Ûþû½þÏ), grace and truth (í¼úóÏ ôëe  õ¿ùïóë) EHFDPHWKURXJK-HVXV&KULVWµ -RKQ  ,WLVKDUGO\VXUSULVLQJWRVHH0RVHVPHQWLRQHGLQ-RKQ·VSUologue, for as the French exegete M.E. Boismard has convincingly argued, many of the WKHPHVGHYHORSHGLQWKHSURORJXHDUHDOVRIRXQGLQ<DKZHK·VUHPDUNDEOe revelation to Moses in Exodus 33²34, connections to which we shall return shortly.3 In 1:17 John gives an obvious contrast between Moses and Jesus. However, he does not necessarily contrast ÷ÁöøÏ as a negative with í¼úóÏ ôëe  õ¿ùïóë as positives. Instead, the gift îó Ûþû½þÏ has an intimate FRQQHFWLRQZLWKWKHJLIWVRI&KULVWDFRQQHFWLRQWKDWWKHUHVWRI-RKQ·Vnarrative will explore. Stefan Schapdick concludes that, for John, ´faith in the christologically shaped divine revelation is no contradiction to the -HZLVKUHOLJLRXVWUDGLWLRQDWDOOEXWWKHRQO\ZD\WRNHHSLWµ4 John does draw a contrast between the figures of Moses and Jesus, though once again this does not imply a negative view of Moses or of the ÷ÁöøÏ properly interpreted. The divine passive  ÷îÁùò indicates that the Law did not originate within Moses, but instead came to the people of Israel ´throughµ (îó) him. John introduces Moses into his narrative as an instrument of God, one through whom God chose to give the gift of the ÷ÁöøÏ.5 In a subtle way, this introduces a polemic, developed throughout the Gospel, against exalted views of Moses. He deserves respect, but only WKHUHVSHFWEHILWWLQJDKXPDQLQVWUXPHQWRI*RG·VZRUN%RLVPDUGEULQJVout tKLVGLVWLQFWLRQ´0RVHVRQO\WUDQVPLWWHGWRPHQZKDW*RGVSRNHWRhim. Jesus is God hLPVHOI  VSHDNLQJWRPHQµ6 Finally, this verse identifies Moses with Sinai, as John links Moses and the ÷ÁöøÏ together. When you mention one, the other immediately comes to mind. Further-more, Moses and the ÷ÁöøÏ have some kind of relationship with the í¼úóÏ ôëe  õ¿ùïóë, which are associated with Jesus. But the connection drawn between the two will be quite different depending on who is speaking, and there we find the key to under-VWDQGLQJ-RKQ·VXVHRI÷ÁöøÏ. Severino Pancaro, in a comprehensive study of the ÷ÁöøÏ LQ-RKQSRVLWVWKLVGLVWLQFWLRQLQ-RKQ·VQDUUDWLYH÷ÁöøÏ has 3 M.E. Boismard, Moses or Jesus: An Essay in Johannine Christology, trans. B.T. Viviano (Leuven, Belgium: Leuven University Press, 1993), 93²98. 4 6WHIDQ6FKDSGLFN´5HOLJLRXV$XWKRULW\5H-Evaluated: The Character of Moses in WKH)RXUWK*RVSHOµLQMoses in Biblical and Extra-Biblical Traditions, ed. Axel Graupner and Michael Wolter (Berlin: Walter de Gruyter, 2007), 188²189. 5 Wayne A. Meeks, The Prophet-King: Moses Traditions and the Johannine Christology (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1967), 287. 6 Boismard, Moses or Jesus, 98. 0DURQGH0RVHVLQ-RKQ·V*RVSHO 27 two separate meanings, one when used by the Jews and one when used by -HVXV+HZULWHV´:KDt opposes Jesus . . . to the Jews is a different under-standing of the Law; the difference is determined by whether one believes LQ-HVXVRUQRW7KHXQGHUVWDQGLQJRIWKH¶-HZV·LVWKDWRI¶QRUPDWLYH·Judaism; the understanding of John is that of ChristianVµ7 The Jews who were opposed to Jesus held to the ÷ÁöøÏ as interpreted by oral tradition. On the basis of this interpretation of the ÷ÁöøÏ they make a fourfold accusation against Jesus: his violation of the Sabbath (John 5 and 9), blasphemy (John 5:17²18; 8:58; 10:24²28), false teaching (John 7:14²18, 18:19²24), and opposition to the nation (John 11:47²53).8 This perspective on the ÷ÁöøÏ obviously receives a negative portrayal throughout the Gospel. Jesus distances himself from the ÷ÁöøÏ in these contexts, calling it ´\RXUODZµ9 On the other hand, John operates with a definition of the ÷ÁöøÏ as viewed through the lens of Christ. Jesus is not opposed to the ÷ÁöøÏRQO\WRKLVRSSRQHQW·VVWXEERUQLQWHUSUHWDWLRQRILW,QIDFWDVZHwill see in the texts discussed below, the only way to follow the ÷ÁöøÏ propHUO\LVWREHOLHYHLQ-HVXV´:KDWLVDWWDFNHGDQGFRQGHPQHGE\-RKQis a false understanding of the Law which would oppose the Law and -HVXVREVHUYDQFHRIWKH/DZDQGIDLWKLQ-HVXVµ10 Therefore, ÷ÁöøÏ in John does not have a primarily ethical definition, as the Greek word ÷ÁöøÏ or our English term ´lawµ would imply.11 In -RKQ·VQDUUDWLYH÷ÁöøÏ has a much more comprehensive meaning, one very much in accord with the concept of Torah (+-) in rabbinical Judaism. Therefore, it can refer either to the Mosaic Law in the strictest sense, referring specifically to the body of legislation found in the Pentateuch (7:51; 18:31), to the entirety of the Pentateuch (1:45), or to the entire Old Testament (7:19, 7:49, 12:34).12 Only the first sense could be considered strictly ethical, while the other two imply the record of all of 7 Severino Pancaro, The Law in the Fourth Gospel (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1975), 525. 8 Pancaro, The Law in the Fourth Gospel, 7. 9 Pancaro, The Law in the Fourth Gospel, 517. Jesus uses the terminology = ÷ÁöøÏ wöF÷ (8:17), wöïü½úøÏ (10:34), or ë{üF÷ (15:25). 10 Pancaro, The Law in the Fourth Gospel, 527. 11 Pancaro, The Law in the Fourth Gospel, 2. Pancaro believes that Paul, for the most part, uses the term ÷ÁöøÏ ethically. The ÷ÁöøÏ has a regulatory function, governing PDQ·VFRQGXFWDQGGHPRQVWUDWLQJPDQ·VXWWHUGHSUDYLW\EHIRUH*RG:KHQGLVFXVVHGunder the heading of justification, the works of the ÷ÁöøÏ are opposed to faith. Paul VHHNVWRDQVZHUWKHTXHVWLRQ´:KDWPXVWRQHGRWREHVDYHG"µLQWKHKHDWRf battle against the Judaizers (528). 12 Pancaro, The Law in the Fourth Gospel, 514. The references cited are not intended to be comprehensive. 28 Concordia Theological Quarterly 77 (2013) *RG·VLQWHUDFWLRQVZLWKKLVFKRVHQSHRSOH7KHODWWHUXVHVDUHSULQFLSDOO\UHYHODWRU\ZKLFKLVWKHIRFXVRI-RKQ·VXVHRI÷ÁöøÏ throughout his narrative. The Gospel of John is concerned with the identity of Jesus, and the ÷ÁöøÏ serves that emphasis by testifying primarily to Christ.13 -RKQ·Vuse of ÷ÁöøÏ is broad and comprehensive, but he specifically and intentionally ties it to Moses in 1:17. If the concept of ÷ÁöøÏ can encompass all of the Old Testament, why does John identify it with Moses? First of all, as noted in the introduction, such identification emphasizes the foun-dational nature of Moses. As Pancaro summarizes, ´(ven when John refers to a particular aspect or text of the Law, it is always the Law as a whole, as the body of divine revelation given to Moses, passed on from generation to generation and constituting the foundation of Judaism, which lurks in the backgroXQGµ14 -XVWDV´7RUDKµFDQVWDQGIRUDOO6FULSWXUHVR´0RVHVµFDQstand as the representative of all through whom revelation was given by Yahweh. But perhaps the connection is tied up in the very structure of -RKQ·VSURORJXH M.E. Boismard persuasively arJXHVWKDWZHVKRXOGVHHLQ-RKQ·VSUR-logue an echo of Exodus 33²34. In that remarkable section, Moses advo-cates for the people in the aftermath of their worship of the golden calf. Though God promises his presence, Moses asks for a sign; he wants a theopKDQ\KHZDQWVWRVHH*RG0RUHVSHFLILFDOO\KHDVNV´6KRZPHyour glory (33:18).µ*RGRQO\VKRZVKis backside as Moses hides in the cleft RIWKHURFN7KLVKDVDVWURQJHFKRLQ-RKQ´:HKDYHVHHQKLVJORU\µJohn declares that in Christ we now see the glory of God, the visible manifestation of his presence. In addition, as Boismard notes, Exodus 33²LVIRFXVHGDURXQGWKHSURPLVHRI*RG·VSUHVHQFHDPRQJKLVSHRSOHspecifically his presence at the tent of meeting (Exod 33:7²10) and the anticipation of his presence in the tabernacle. There is then no mistake that DOVRLQYHUVHRIWKHSURORJXH-RKQGHFODUHV´7KH:RUGbecame flesh and tented ( ûô¿÷þûï÷) DPRQJXVµ)LQDOO\, and most importantly, the connection between ÷ÁöøÏ and í¼úóÏ ôëe  õ¿ùïóë, found in John 1:17, is paralleled in the name that Yahweh gives hLPVHOILQ([RGXV´7KHLord, the Lord, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abound-ing in steadfast love ($) and faithfulness (!)µ%RLVPDUGDUJXHVWKDWWKHproper Greek translation for! and $ is í¼úóÏ ôëe  õ¿ùïóë.15 Following this great statement of Yahweh, Moses is sent back down the mountain 13 Pancaro, The Law in the Fourth Gospel, 530²531. 14 Pancaro, The Law in the Fourth Gospel, 517. 15 Boismard, Moses or Jesus, 96. The LXX has õïøÏ instead of í¼úóÏ, but Boismard argues that í¼úóÏ is the more appropriate Greek equivalent for $. 0DURQGH0RVHVLQ-RKQ·V*RVSHO 29 bearing new tablets of the law (Exod 34:10²29). God gave the ÷ÁöøÏ through (îó) Moses again in Exodus 34, and John declares that the greater gift of í¼úóÏ ôëe  õ¿ùïóë alluded to by Yahweh himself in that text has now come in the person of Jesus Christ.16 *RG·VIDLWKIXOQHVVWRhis people, declared and demonstrated to Moses in Exodus 33²34, is fulfilled in Jesus. Therefore, Exodus 33²34 is a key text for understanding John 1:17. There the ÷ÁöøÏ and Moses are connected with one another, and together they are associated with í¼úóÏ ôëe  õ¿ùïóë. The two sides of 1:17 are not opposed to one another, but instead it is Moses and the ÷ÁöøÏ that point to í¼úóÏ ôëe  õ¿ùïóë$SROHPLFLVDOVRLPSOLHGKHUH-HVXV·RSSRQHQWVDW-tempt to find í¼úóÏ ôëe  õ¿ùïóë in the ÷ÁöøÏ, but to no avail. The ÷ÁöøÏ does not have í¼úóÏ ôëe  õ¿ùïóë in itself, but instead it testifies to the one who is í¼úóÏ ôëe  õ¿ùïóë incarnate, Jesus Christ.17 If the prologue lays the foundation for the rest of the Gospel, then it would follow that this identification of Moses with the ÷ÁöøÏ would persist throughout the narrative. Indeed, it does stand in the background of every other appearance of Ûþû&Ï in John. In chapter seven, this identification comes to the fore during a dispute between Jesus and ´the Jewsµ over his authority to teach. Here Jesus brings Moses into the argu-PHQWLQZLWKDTXHVWLRQWKDWSDUDOOHOVWKHVWDWHPHQWLQ´+DVQRWMoses given (î½îþôï÷) to you the law (ü<÷ ÷Áöø÷)"µ7KHSUHSRVLWLRQîó does not appear as we would expect, emphasizing Moses as an instrument of God. Instead, in verse 22 Jesus declares the same teaching through a different means. Here he describes Moses not only as the law-giver, but PRUHVSHFLILFDOO\DVWKHJLYHURIFLUFXPFLVLRQDQGWKHQDGGVDFDYHDW´1RWthat it is from Moses (!ô üøv Ûþû½þÏ) but from the fathers (!ô üF÷ ëü½úþ÷)µ7KLVIXOILOOVWKHVDPHIXQFWLRQDVDîó clause, indicating that the ÷ÁöøÏ did not originate with Moses, but that Yahweh used Moses as his instrument to give the ÷ÁöøÏ to Israel. As in 1:17, Moses appears here in identification with the ÷ÁöøÏ, which Yahweh gave (î½îþôï÷) through (îó) him. Jesus emphasizes this identification in the next verse by using the formulaic phrase = ÷ÁöøÏ Ûþû½þÏ. In a similar way, the scribes and the Pharisees identify Moses simply as the giver of the ÷ÁöøÏ in 8:5. The theme of identification runs underneath and forms the foundation of all other occurrences of Ûþû&Ï, but as the prologue foreshadowed, other themes have a greater emphasis throughout the Gospel. 16 Boismard, Moses or Jesus, 93²98. 17 Pancaro, The Law in the Fourth Gospel, 539²540. 30 Concordia Theological Quarterly 77 (2013) III. Moses as Accuser In the texts examined above, Moses appeared in testimony to the ÷ÁöøÏ, equated with the revelation given by Yahweh to his people throughout the Old Testament. He is a static character, inanimate, a stone statue bearing mute testimony to what God gave through him. But in 5:45²0RVHVEHFRPHVDFWLYHDQGIRU-HVXV· listeners the results are shocking, to say the least. The implied polemic observed in the prologue now comes completely to the surface. As he will in John 7, Jesus himself brings Moses into the discussion. After healing an invalid on the SabbathFDQDFWLRQWKDWcaused the Jews to grumble against hLPFJesus replies in John 5:´0\)DWKHUXQWLOQRZLVZRUNLQJDQG,DPZRUNLQJµ+HWKHQODXQFKHVLQWRDdiscussion of the authority of the Son, culminating with an appeal to three witnesses: John the Baptist, the Father, and finally Moses. The entire text has the appearance of a courtroom scene as Jesus defends his divine Sonship, leaving his most devastating witness for the end:18 ´Do not think that I accuse (ôëüòñøú¿ûþ) you to the Father. Your accuser (ôëüòñøúF÷) is Moses, in whom you have hoped. For if you believe Moses, you would EHOLHYHLQPH)RUDERXWPHWKDWRQHZURWHµ -RKQ²46). Shapdick emphasizes how shocking this statement was to the religious leadership: 0RVHV· ´classical role as intermediary between God and Israel ZKRDOZD\VLQWHUFHGHVIRUWKH,VUDHOLWHVLVWXUQHGLQWRLWVGLUHFWRSSRVLWHµ19 The Jews have set their hope ('õÀôëüï) on him, not only in general but also quite specifically in this situation, as they accused Jesus of breaking the Sabbath commandment. However, in a stunning reversal, Moses is their accuser (ôëüòñøúF÷). Moses here acts not only as witness but also as SURVHFXWRU7KHYHUE-HVXVXVHVKHUHFDQVLPSO\PHDQ´WRVSHDNDJDLQVWµbut it most often acts as technical legal terminology for bringing charges in a courtroom setting.20 Pancaro helpfully notes that while in Jewish legal SDUODQFHWKHUHZDVQR´SXEOLFSURVHFXWRUµDVVXFKWKHUHZHUH´ZLWQHVVHVDJDLQVWµWKHGHIHQGDQWZKRDFWHGDVSURVHFXWRUV ôëüòñøúF÷), as well as third persons who could speak against the defendant.21 Moses makes his accusation on the basis of what he wrote (!ñúëï÷), for he wrote about the Christ. If the Jews claim to adhere to Moses, then they would believe in the 18 Stan Harstine, Moses as a Character in the Fourth Gospel: A Study of Ancient Reading Techniques (London: Sheffield Academic Press, 2002), 57. 19 6FKDSGLFN´5HOLJLRXV$XWKRULW\5H-(YDOXDWHGµ 20 Frederick William Danker, ed., A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and other early Christian Literature, 3rd ed. (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2000), 533. 21 Pancaro, The Law in the Fourth Gospel, 254²255. 0DURQGH0RVHVLQ-RKQ·V*RVSHO 31 Christ. In this text, Jesus establishes Moses not only as a witness (ö¼úüýÏ) but also as an accuser (ôëüòñøúF÷). The Trial Motif These dual designations are not only paradigmic for several other texts in which Moses is mentioned, but they also place Moses firmly into the )RXUWK*RVSHO·V´WULDOPRWLIµIn a monograph on the subject, A.T. Lincoln PDNHVWKHFRQYLQFLQJDUJXPHQWWKDWWKHUHDGHUVRI-RKQ·V*RVSHODUHWRVHHthe entire narrative as a trial or lawsuit. This judicial motif has a rich Old Testament lineage. Lincoln specifically points to Isaiah 40²55 as influential RQ-RKQ·VQDUUDWLYHEXWH[DPSOHVRIWKLVPRWLIDERXQGLQ6FULSWXUHespecially in the prophets.22 ´7KLVQDUUDWLYHXQOLNHWKDWRIWKH6\QRSWLFVhas no account of a Jewish trial before the Sanhedrin. Instead, throughout his public ministry, Jesus can be viewed as on trial before Israel and its OHDGHUVµ23 The religious leaders, in a variety of encounters with Jesus, at-tempt to demonstrate that he is a false prophet by bringing against him the four charges described above: his violation of the Sabbath, blasphemy, false teaching, and opposition to the nation.24 Jesus, on the other hand, seeks to confirm his divine identity and Messianic mission. Here Moses finds his place in the motif. As we will see in the following texts, both Jesus and his opponents appeal to the authority of Moses and the ÷ÁöøÏ to make their case. He functions as a witness (ö¼úüýÏ) claimed by both sides, a witness absolutely vital to the trial. We noted that Jesus appeals to three such witnesses in chapter five, punctuated by Moses, the advocate turned accuser. On the basis of the first part of the trial scene, it could be alleged that Jesus was appearing as the sole witness in his own defense. In terms of Jewish legal conventions, this would make his testimony invalid (5:31) . . . . Deuteronomy 19:15 holds that three, or at least two, witnesses are needed for valid testimony. So in John 5:32²40 Jesus appeals to a series of further witnesses.25 The people must determine on the basis of the case presented throughout the narrative whether Jesus is the Messiah or a false prophet. Considering the prominence of Moses within this motif, the people must essentially decide whether Moses testifies on behalf of or against Jesus. 22 Andrew T. Lincoln, Truth on Trial: The Lawsuit Motif in the Fourth Gospel (Peabody, MA: Hendrickson Publishers, 2000), 37. 23 Lincoln, Truth on Trial, 23. 24 Pancaro, The Law in the Fourth Gospel, 7. 25 Lincoln, Truth on Trial, 77. 32 Concordia Theological Quarterly 77 (2013) ,URQLFDOO\-RKQ·VDXGLHQFHVHHVDQRWKHUODZsuit or trial in progress. The religious leaders think that they have placed Jesus on trial, but instead it is Yahweh who has placed them on trial. He will judge them on the basis of whether they believe or reject the one whom he has sent (John 3:17²18). They choose a bandit rather than the good shepherd and thereby VKRZWKDWWKH\GRQRWEHORQJWRWKHIORFNWKDWKHDUVWKHVKHSKHUG·Vvoice . . . . 7KHIXOOLPSOLFDWLRQVRIWKHQDUUDWLYH·VWULDO(therefore) become apparent. In rejecting Jesus, the religious leaders reject their God. They, not Jesus, are the ones who are judged and condemned.26 In a further irony, Jesus brings forth the ultimate verdict of life and VDOYDWLRQRQO\WKURXJKVXFKUHMHFWLRQDQGFRQGHPQDWLRQ,Q&KULVW·Vatoning death on the cross, the judge undergoes the verdict of death that humanity deserved, and instead delivers life.27 Ultimately, as Jesus clearly states in 5:45²46, those who reject the testimony of Moses about the Christ have rejected his destruction of the verdict of death. Moses therefore becomes not their advocate but their accuser. To which text does Jesus refer? Where does Moses act as an ´expert witnessµ in defense of Christ? These questions naturally send scholars to the Torah (÷ÁöøÏ) in an attempt to find Messianic prophecies, or perhaps typological parallels. Deuteronomy 18:18 most commonly comes up in WKHVHGLVFXVVLRQV´,ZLOOUDLVHXSIRUWKHPDSURSKHWOLNH\RXIURPDPRQJtheir brothers. And I will put my words in his mouth, and he shall speak to WKHPDOOWKDW,FRPPDQGKLPµ,QGHHGWKLVWH[WKDVJUHDWLPSRUWDQFHLQ-RKQ·V*RVSHOZLWKQXPHURXVUHIHUHQFHVWR´WKH3URSKHWµDVDPHVVLDQLFfigure.28 However, within the context of the Gospel as a whole and chapter five in particular, this seems incomplete. Jesus does not argue in John 5 that the Scriptures speak about him in specific places; he confesses that fact in other texts. No doubt, direct prophecies and typological parallels are very sig-QLILFDQWIRU&KULVW·VWHDFKLQJDEout himself. John does employ specific Old Testament citations in a similar way to the other evangelists, demon-strating that he sees many direct prophecies fulfilled in Christ.29 But instead of referring to direct prophecy, in John 5 Jesus strongly declares his unity with the Father, making four bold claims: first, that he works on the Sabbath (17); sHFRQGWKDWKH´JLYHVOLIHµ Oøøóïf;  DQGLQGHHG´KDV26 Lincoln, Truth on Trial, 26. 27 Lincoln, Truth on Trial, 206. 28 See Bauckham, The Testimony of the Beloved Disciple, 212²225. 29 Lincoln, Truth on Trial, 54. 0DURQGH0RVHVLQ-RKQ·V*RVSHO 33 OLIHLQKLPVHOIµ !íïó þ%÷  ÷ ë{üO; 26); third, that God has JLYHQ´DOOMXGJPHQWWRWKH6RQµ(22); fourthWKDWDOOVKRXOG´KRQRUWKH6Rn just as they honor the Fatherµ (23). Richard Bauckham notes that with each claim, Jesus has laid hold of ´divine prerogatives,µ functions that belong intrin-sically to the divinity as such. God is the only living One, that is, the only One to whom life belongs eternally and intrinsically. All other life derives from him, is given by him and taken back by him$QRWKHUNH\DVSHFWRI*RG·VVROHVRY-ereignty over creation was his prerogative of judgment: his rule is just, implementing justice, and therefore judging nations and individuals. Such divine prerogatives have to be understood, not as mere functions that God may delegate to others, but as intrinsic to the divine identity. 5XOLQJRYHUDOOJLYLQJOLIHWRDOOH[HUFLVLQJMXGJPHQWRQDOOFWKHVHbelong integrally to the Jewish understanding of who God is.30 Jesus takes on these divine prerogatives, but not in such a way as to set himself up as a rival of the Father. Instead, he is wholly dependent on the Father, even while he exercises these prerogatives. He therefore shares the GLYLQHLGHQWLW\LQXQLW\ZLWKWKH)DWKHUDV´WKHRQO\OLYLQJRQHthe only JLYHURIOLIHWKHRQO\MXGJHRIDOOµ31 The claims Jesus makes in John 5 FRQFXUZLWKERWK-RKQ·VWHVWLPRQ\DQGKLVRZQWKURXJKRXWWKH*RVSHOThe prologue makes it clear that the Word, while distinguished from the Father, is yet included within the unique divine identity proclaimed in the Old Testament.32 Charles Gieschen notes that Jesus portrays himself WKURXJKRXW-RKQ·V*RVSHOXVLQJWKHODQJXDJHRIWKHVXIIHULQJVHUvant of Isaiah 53, identifying himself as the visible image of Yahweh come to suffer in atonement for sin. The close connection between the language of being lifted up (wÁþ) and being glorified (îøí¼þ) indicates that Christ will show himself as the visible image of Yahweh principally on the cross.33 The fourteen famous  ñà ïköÀ statements (seven absolute, seven predicate) found throughout the Gospel are all instances of Jesus identifying himself with the one God of Israel.34 In 8:28,  ñà ïköÀ is linked with wÁþFRQQHFWLQJRQFHDJDLQWKHXOWLPDWHGLVFORVXUHRI&KULVW·Vdivine identity with the cross.35 Finally, in 10:30 Jesus includes himself in 30 Bauckham, The Testimony of the Beloved Disciple, 242. 31 Bauckham, The Testimony of the Beloved Disciple, 243. 32 Bauckham, The Testimony of the Beloved Disciple, 240. 33 &KDUOHV$*LHVFKHQ´7KH'HDWKRI-HVXVLQWKH*RVSHORI-RKQ$WRQHPHQWIRU6LQ"µCTQ 72:3 (2008): 250²254. 34 Bauckham, The Testimony of the Beloved Disciple, 247. 35 *LHVFKHQ´7KH'HDWKRI-HVXVµ 34 Concordia Theological Quarterly 77 (2013) the great confession of Israel, the Shema 'HXW ZLWKWKHDVVHUWLRQ´,DQGWKH)DWKHUDUH2QHµ36 7KHUHIRUHWKURXJKRXW-RKQ·V*RVSHODQGHVSHFLDOO\LQFKDSWHUILYHChrist identifies himself as Yahweh in the flesh come to give life. He there-fore establishes a hermeneutic for interpreting the books of Moses. When Moses wrote about the words and acts of Yahweh, he wrote about Jesus. This includes every Messianic prophecy, but is not limited to them. If all of 0RVHV·ZULWLQJVVSHDNRI&KULVWWKHQRQHFDQRQO\IXOO\XQGHUVWDQGWKem through faith in him. Those who reject Christ cannot properly interpret 6FULSWXUHIRUWKH\GRQRWYLHZWKHPLQ´WKHOLJKWRI*RG·VQHZUHYHODWLRQLQWKHLQFDUQDWH:RUGµ37 :HFDQWKHUHIRUHVXUPLVHWKDW3KLOLS·VFRQIHVVLRQLQWKDW-HVXVLV´WKHRQH(about) ZKRP0RVHVZURWHLQWKHODZµexpresses the same view of the Torah. In the context of John 1, where John confesses the preexistence and divinity of Christ, the evangelist would not want us to see that confession in any other way. In John 5, Jesus takes Moses and establishes him as ö¼úüýÏ to himself. Moses wrote about Christ, therefore any who claim to embrace Moses should follow Christ. To those who do not see Christ as the one spoken of by Moses, namely Yahweh in the flesh, Moses becomes the ôëüòñøúF÷, the RQHZKRDFFXVHVDQGFRQGHPQVWKHP´*RLQJDJDLQVWWKLVLQWHUSUHWDWLRQVWDQGDUGPDNHVKLPWKHSURVHFXWRURIVXFKDPLVJXLGHGUHDGLQJµ38 There-IRUH-HVXVKHUHLQWURGXFHVDVWURQJSROHPLF+HDWWDFNVKLVRSSRQHQW·Vmisinterpretation and misappropriation of the ÷ÁöøÏ and Moses. The Jewish leaders want to force the people to make a decision between Jesus DQG0RVHVEHWZHHQWKLVZDQGHULQJUDEELDQG,VUDHO·VPRVWVLJQLILFDQWfigure. But in 5:45²-HVXVUHMHFWVWKLVQRWLRQ´)RUWKDWRQHZURWH(!ñúëï÷) DERXWPHµ6WDQ+DUVWLQHVXPPDUL]HV´,WLVQRWDGHFLVLRQbetween Moses and Jesus. Rejecting Jesus equates to unfaithfulness to 0RVHVµ39 Forcing such a decision means holding to a false dichotomy, for one can only truly follow Moses by believing in Jesus as Yahweh in the flesh. Philip understood this already in 1:45, where he accurately inter-preted the ÷ÁöøÏ as speaking of the eternal Son of God who would become the incarnate Jesus Christ.40 36 Bauckham, The Testimony of the Beloved Disciple, 250. 37 Lincoln, Truth on Trial, 55. 38 6FKDSGLFN´5HOLJLRXV$XWKRULW\5H-(YDOXDWHGµ 39 Harstine, Moses as a Character in the Fourth Gospel, 60. 40 6KDSGLFN´5HOLJLRXV$XWKRULW\5H-(YDOXDWHGµ 0DURQGH0RVHVLQ-RKQ·V*RVSHO 35 -RKQ·V3ROHPLF Jesus can only combat the false dichotomy of his opponents by introducing a second part to his polemic. He must assault the exalted views of Moses in his day. As noted above, the Gospel of John emphasizes Moses as an instrument of God. Jesus adds the designations ö¼úüýÏ and ôëüòñøúF÷, but these remain the roles of an instrument of God, inextricably tied with the ÷ÁöøÏ delivered through him. But in the Jewish mystical literature current in the first century, Moses has a much larger role, for he is depicted as actually ascending to heaven several times during his life, most importantly to receive the ÷ÁöøÏ when he went up to Mount Sinai.41 Wayne Meeks notes that first-century Jewish writer Philo of Alexandria considered the incident at the burning bush, the incident at Mount 6LQDLDQG0RVHV·GHDWKDOODVH[DPSOHVRIP\VWLFDOH[SHULHQFHVEvery mystic longed for a vision of God, and Philo believed that Moses came nearer to that goal than any other human. In fact, he held Moses in VXFKKLJKHVWHHPWKDWKHVHHVWKHDVFHQWVRI0RVHVDV´YLUWXDOO\DGHLILFDWLRQµ42 Philo ZULWHV´7KLV(Exodus 24:12a) signifies that a holy soul is divinized by ascending not to the air or to the ether or to heaven (which is) higher than all but to (a region) above the heavens. And beyond the ZRUOGWKHUHLVQRSODFHEXW*RGµ43 For Philo, both at Sinai and at his death Moses leaves the bodily realm WRHQWHUWKH´LQFRUSRUHDODQGLQWHOOLJLEOHµ+LVGHDWKLVDQDVFHQWWRKHDYHQafter the pattern of the ascent of Sinai, but this ascent has a slightly dif-ferent character, as Meeks explains: ´7KHP\VWLFDVFHQW(Sinai) is a kind of ¶UHDOL]HGHVFKDWRORJ\·; the final ascension is a projection and fulfillment of WKHJRDORIWKHP\VWLFDVFHQWµ44 Other sources follow Philo in seeing Moses on Mount Sinai as an example of mystic ascent, including the Apocalypse of Ezra: I (Yahweh) told him (Moses) many wondrous things, showed him the secrets of the times, declared to him the end of the seasons: Then I commanded him saying: These words shalt thou publish openly, but these keep secret. And now I do say to thee: The signs which I have shewed thee, the dreams which thou hast seen, and the interpretations ZKLFKWKRXKDVKHDUGFOD\WKHPXSLQWK\KHDUW)RUWKRXVKDOWEH41 Other Old Testament figures, including Abraham and Jacob, are also associated with this mystical tradition. 42 Meeks, The Prophet-King, 123. 43 Quoted in Meeks, The Prophet-King, 124. 44 Meeks, The Prophet-King, 125. 36 Concordia Theological Quarterly 77 (2013) taken up from (among) men, and henceforth thou shalt remain with my Son, and with such as are like thee, until the times be ended.45 Moses therefore became a paradigm for other mystics to follow, as he PRGHOHGIRUWKHPWKHP\VWLFDVFHQW%XWWKHWUDGLWLRQRI0RVHV·DVFHQWQRWonly makes him a mystic example, it also makes him the originator of SURSKHF\DQGWKHLGHDONLQJ´(In heaven) he received the Torah, was crowned king of Israel and thus GRG·VYLFH-regent, and learned the secrets ZKLFKPDGHKLPWHDFKHURIDOOSURSKHWVµ46 We find an example of this XQGHUVWDQGLQJLQRQHRIWKHHDUOLHVWDFFRXQWVRI0RVHV· ascent, a document called Exagoge from the second century BC: 2Q6LQDL·VSHDN,VDZZKDWseemed a throne so great in size it touched the clouds of heaven. Upon it sat a man of noble mien, becrowned, and with a scepter in one hand while with the other he did beckon me. ,PDGHDSSURDFKDQGVWRRGEHIRUHWKHWKURQH+HKDQGHGR·HUWKHscepter and he bade me mount the throne, and gave to me the crown; then he himself withdrew from off the throne. I gazed upon the whole earth round about; things under it, and high above the skies. Then at my feet a multitude of stars fell down, and I their number reckoned up. They passed by me like armed ranks of men. Then I in terror wakened from the dream.47 In addition to the subtle polemic already noted, Jesus directly and explicitly combats the mystical ascent tradition in 3:13, where he declares: ´1RRQHKDVDVFHnded into heaven except he who descended from heaven, WKH6RQRI0DQµ Scholars understand this polemic in different ways. Jey Kanagaraj considers the Gospel of -RKQD´P\VWLFDOµGRFXPHQWZULWWHQLQSDUWWRSUR-claim Christ to those enamored with the mystic tradition. According to this view, John wrote under the framework of mysticism, and therefore tried to understand Jesus within that context.48 Mystical communion with God is RQO\SRVVLEOHWKURXJK&KULVW.DQDJDUDMVXPPDUL]HV´%\PHDQVRIWKHascent-motif John polemizes, proclaims, and persuades the people of his day by reinterpreting the contemporary mystical belief in terms of the SHUVRQDQGIXQFWLRQRI-HVXVµ49 Meeks comes to a similar conclusion, 45 Quoted in Meeks, The Prophet-King, 157. 46 Meeks, The Prophet-King, 215. 47 Jey J. Kanagaraj, ¶0\VWLFLVP·LQWKH*RVSHORI-RKQ$Q,QTXLU\LQWRIts Background (London: Sheffield Academic Press, 1998), 112. The Greek text is provided by Meeks, The Prophet-King, 148. 48 Kanagaraj, ¶0\VWLFLVP·LQWKH*RVSHORI-RKQ, 317. 49 Kanagaraj, ¶0\VWLFLVP·LQWKH*RVSHORI-RKQ, 213. 0DURQGH0RVHVLQ-RKQ·V*RVSHO 37 SRVLWLQJWKDWWKHSRUWUD\DORI-HVXVLQ-RKQ·V*RVSHORwes much to the mystical traditions surrounding the early Christians. In the opinion of both scholars, the polemic exists not against mystic traditions as such, but against the superior view of Moses in those traditions. Jesus fulfills the functions earlier attributed to Moses, and he does so in a far superior way.50 Such approaches do not appreciate the depth of the polemic we find in the Gospel of John. Jesus does not simply replace Moses or others as the greatest mystic or as the fulfillment of mystical yearnings. He rejects these mystic traditions outright as a false way to understand God. Despite what the mystics taught, Moses did not ascend to heaven, nor should others attempt to commune with God in this way. Instead, Yahweh has come down to his people throughout history and climactically in the person of Jesus Christ.51 Christ is the only one who ascends and descends, and he does so not as the greatest mystic, but in order to be lifted up on the cross, ´WKDWZKRHYHUEHOLHYHVLQKLPPD\KDYHHWHUQDOOLIHµ  7KHP\VWLFDOascent tradition by no means characterizes the view of all first-century Jews, but in the context of this tradition, we can see why Jesus needed to put Moses into his proper place as the instrument of God through whom he gave the ÷ÁöøÏ, thereby making Moses the one who wrote about Jesus. Under the framework established in 5:45²47 and in the preceding GLVFXVVLRQZHFDQQRZUHH[DPLQH-HVXV·XVHRI0RVHVLQFKDSWHUVHYHQWe already noted that Jesus emphasizes Moses as an instrument of Yahweh, not through a îó clause as in the prologue, but instead through WKHSKUDVH´1RWWKDWLWLVIURP0RVHVEXWIURPWKHIDWKHUVµ1RZZHFDQsee the polemical rationale for this phrase. As he brings Moses into the discussion, Jesus seemingly gives him high status as the giver of the ÷ÁöøÏ, using the active verb î½îþôï÷ rather than  ÷îÁùò coupled with îó, as in the prologue. The phrase in 7:22 therefore functions to combat such a mis-interpretation. Moses does not give anything of his own accord, but instead Yahweh uses him, as he did the ëü½úþ÷, to give his ÷ÁöøÏ. The rabbinical teachings based on the ÷ÁöøÏ Ûþû½þÏ (7:23) passed through human hands, while Jesus received his teaching directly from the Father.52 As 3:13 emphasizes, Moses did not ascend to heaven to partake of the 50 Meeks, The Prophet-King, 319. 51 &KDUOHV$*LHVFKHQ´0HUNDYDK0\VWLFLVPDQGWKH*RVSHORI-RKQµ(unpublished paper, Jerome Exegetical Seminar, Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, IN, October 28, 2009), 10²11. 52 Harstine, Moses as a Character in the Fourth Gospel, 66. 38 Concordia Theological Quarterly 77 (2013) mysteries of God. Instead, Jesus, who descended, teaches with the authority given to him by the one who sent him (7:16²18). But this does not mean that Jesus has no use for Moses in this text. Even though he puts Moses in his proper place, Jesus still calls on him as the ôëüòñøúF÷0RVHVDFFXVHV-HVXV·RSSRQHQWVRIQRWNHHSLQJWKH÷ÁöøÏ: ´'LGQ·W0RVHVJLYHWR\RXWKHODZ(ü<÷ ÷Áöø÷)? And none from among you does (øóïf) the law (ü<÷ ÷Áöø÷):K\GR\RXVHHNWRNLOOPH"µ -RKQ7:19). This accusation is once again especially surprising in a context where the Jews oppose Jesus for breaking the Sabbath law (the same incident that prompted the discourse in chapter five!). Jesus here teaches that doing (øóïf) the ÷ÁöøÏ Ûþû½þÏ involves much more than following the ´UXOHVµ,QVWHDd, as Jesus explicitly teaches in John 5, it involves a recog-nition that Moses wrote about Jesus throughout the ÷ÁöøÏ. It requires the assertion that Jesus is Yahweh come in the flesh. Jesus therefore once again rejects the false dichotomy between Moses and himself. One who follows the ÷ÁöøÏ and Moses would not seek to kill Jesus, but instead would embrace him. As noted above, Jesus will use a similar argument when the people call Abraham as a witness against him in chapter eight. All of the themes noted in 5:45²47 come together dramatically in John 9. Here the Pharisees attempt to claim Moses for themselves. Jesus begins the narrative with yet another healing on the Sabbath. He moves on, but WKHKHDOHGPDQ·VIULHQGVDQGIDPLO\EULQJKLPEHIRUHWKH3KDULVHHs. There they interrogate him, and the healed man asks the provocative question in YHUVH´'R\RXDOVRZDQWWREHFRPHhLVGLVFLSOHV"µ7KH3KDULVHHVVHL]Hon this opportunity to bring forth Moses as the ôëüòñøúF÷. They will judge -HVXV·DFWLRQVRQWKHEDVLVRIWKH÷ÁöøÏ Ûþû½þÏ, for they consider themselves disciples of Moses, unlike the healed man, whom they describe as disciples RI´WKDWRQHµ  ôïÀ÷øý). Why do they hold so firmly to Moses? ´%HFDXVH*RGKDVVSRNHQWR0RVHVµ  7KLVFRXOGVLPSO\UHIHUWRWKHintimate relationship between Yahweh and Moses described in the Pentateuch.53 However, in light of the ongoing polemic described above, we could perhaps also detect a reference to the ascent tradition, that God spoke to Moses when he ascended into heaven to receive the ÷ÁöøÏ. Regardless, the Pharisees will stake their claim on Moses, for they do not know the origins of Jesus. The healed man knows that Jesus came ´from *RGµ   Philip declared much the same in 1:45, correctly identifying Jesus as the one about whom Moses wrote. The irony runs deep in this text. The Pharisees attempt to claim Moses as the ôëüòñøúF÷, but instead 53 See especially Exodus 33:11. 0DURQGH0RVHVLQ-RKQ·V*RVSHO 39 WKHKHDOHGPDQDFFXVHVWKHPRIUHIXVLQJWRUHFRJQL]H-HVXV·GLYLQHRULJLQVThe healed man exposes their false use of Moses, just as Jesus did in John 5 and 7. As Jesus said in chapter five, if they claim to believe in Moses, then they would believe in him.54 With the conclusion of this incident, Moses disappears from the narra-tive. The polemic has found its final conclusion, as the religious leaders fully embrace the false dichotomy and follow Moses rather than the one to whom he pointed.55 And in doing so, they will put to death the one whom Moses proclaimed, losing both Moses and the Messiah. IV. Moses as Instrument of Salvation In the prologue, -RKQVWDWHVWKDW´WKHODZ(= ÷ÁöøÏ) was given ( ÷îÁùò) through Moses (îó Ûþû½þÏ)µ7KH*RVSHORI-RKQGHPRQVWUDWHVWKDWGod gave many gifts to his people îó Ûþû½þÏ. As discussed extensively above, the gift of the ÷ÁöøÏ through Moses is ultimately the gift of reve-lation pointing to Christ. However, other gifts were given îó Ûþû½þÏ, and the provision of food and healing in the desert also are brought to the fore in the ongoing trial of Jesus. Following the miraculous feeding in John 6, the people demanG\HWDQRWKHUVLJQ´2XUIDWKHUVDWHWKHPDQQDLQWKHZLOGHUQHVVDVLWLVZULWWHQ¶He gave (!÷îþôï÷) them bread from heaven to HDW·µ  7KHSHRSOHKHDUNHQEDFNWR*RG·VJUDFLRXVSURYLVLRQLQWKHdesert, or do they? The quotation that the people give (presumably from Nehemiah 9:15) does not mention who actually gave the bread.56 The verb !÷îþôï÷ could refer to either Yahweh or Moses.57 Jesus obviously thought that the Jews confronting him regarded Moses as the giver, for he launched into the kind of polemic we encountered in other texts. Moses retains his importance as the one through whom the gift was given, but the manna RULJLQDWHGIURP´P\)DWKHU(ëü¿ú öøý)µ7KHSHRSOHZDQWHGWRIRUFHDFKRLFHEHWZHHQ0RVHVDQG-HVXVEHWZHHQ0RVHV·SURYLVLRQRIPDQna for IRUW\\HDUVLQWKHGHVHUWDQG-HVXV·IHHGLQJRIWKHILYHWKRXVDQGRQRQHafternoon. When viewed in those terms, as simply a competition between Moses and Jesus, Moses obviously had the greater miracle. In response, Jesus does not deny the earlier giIW´WKURXJK0RVHVµ îó Ûþû½þÏ), but LQVWHDGUHMHFWVWKHLUFRQFHSWLRQRI0RVHV·UROHLQJLYLQJWKDWJLIW7KH\KDYHthe wrong grammar, for Moses cannot be the subject of the verbs when 54 Lincoln, Truth on Trial, 103. 55 Boismard, Moses or Jesus, 22²23. 56 Nehemiah 9:15 does specify who gave the manna, using the second person verb in prayer to Yahweh. 57 6KDSGLFN´5HOLJLRXV$XWKRULW\5H-(YDOXDWHGµ 40 Concordia Theological Quarterly 77 (2013) GLVFXVVLQJ<DKZHK·VJLIWV-HVXVSURYLGHVDFRUUHFWLYHLPSOLFLWO\DIILUPLQJthe importancHRI*RG·VJLIWRIPDQQDWKURXJK0RVHV58 Next, Jesus contrasts the gifts themselves. God did provide for his people in the desert îó Ûþû½þÏ, continuing the mighty acts of salvation he wrought îó Ûþû½þÏ to bring the people out from bondage in Egypt. However, this manna could not give eternal life. And so the same God who gave the gift of manna îó Ûþû½þÏ now gives to the world a much greater gift, for Jesus points to himself as WKH´WUXHEUHDGIURPKHDYHQ ü<÷  úüø÷  ô üøv ø{úë÷øv ü<÷  õòùó÷Á÷; 6:32).µGod used Moses as his chosen instrument of temporal salvation for the people of Israel, but did not give to Moses the task of accomplishing eternal salvation. That role belongs VROHO\DQGFRPSOHWHO\WR-HVXVDVKHGHFODUHVKLPVHOIWREHWKHRQH´JLYLQJlife (Oøøóïf) to the worldµ  . Not only does this bread give eternal life, but Jesus also describes this bread as the one who comes down (ôëüëìëÀ÷þ÷) from heaven, once again a polemic against the mystic ascent tradition. Moses did not ascend to heaven to receive the mysteries of God, but instead the same God who worked through (îó) him now brings ulti-mate and eternal salvation through the one coming down from heaven, Yahweh in human flesh. Moses appears in a similar role in John 3. God gave the ÷ÁöøÏ through Moses, he gave the manna through Moses, and in this text Jesus calls to mind the fact that God gave deliverance from serpents in the desert îó Ûþû½þÏ. Jesus had spoken of birth from above and being born of the Spirit, but those actions needed an ancKRULQ*RG·VZRUNRIVDOYDWLRQ+HSURYLGHVWKDWDQFKRUE\FRQQHFWLQJ*RG·VZRUNRIUHELUWKZLWKKLVRZQdeath and resurrection. To do this, Jesus brings Moses to center stage: ´$QGMXVWDV0RVes lifted up (xþûï÷) the snake in the desert, thus it is necessary for the Son of man to be lifted up (wþù&÷ëó), in order that all who believe in hLPKDYHHWHUQDOOLIHµ -RKQ²15). Jesus presents the incident in Numbers 21:4²9 as pointing directly to his death, specifically to his manner of dying. As per usual iQ-RKQ·VGospel, this statement does not stand alone without a polemic. Jesus implies the same facts that he emphasized in John 6, that all those de-livered îó Ûþû½þÏ still died. Jesus, however, gives eternal life (þ%÷ ëkÃ÷óø÷).59 Ultimate salvation only comes through the work of Christ, and KHZLOODFFRPSOLVKVDOYDWLRQWKURXJKDQ´DVFHQWµRIVRUWVthough a 58 6KDSGLFN´5HOLJLRXV$XWKRULW\5H-(YDOXDWHGµ 59 6KDSGLFN´5HOLJLRXV$XWKRULW\5H-(YDOXDWHGµ²193. 0DURQGH0RVHVLQ-RKQ·V*RVSHO 41 paradoxical one, as he is lifted up and glorified only upon the cross.60 John 3:13, which sets the stage for this mention of Moses, provides the definitive counter to the ascent tradition. The Son of Man, the one who came down from heaven, provides eternal life to all who believe, even as God pro-YLGHGOLIHZLWK0RVHV·OLIWLQJXSof WKHVHUSHQW&KULVW·V´ascentµ on the cross brings ultimate and eternal life to all, as the Christ takes on the verdict of death declared by God on his sinful creation. In both texts, Jesus places Moses into his most important role in the Gospel of JohnWKDWRI´LQVWUXPHQWRIVDOYDWLRQµ7KLVWLWOHKDVEHHQFRLQHGby the author of this study, though the concept is not without precedence. Harstine, in a similar investigation, identifies five different roles for Moses LQ-RKQ·VQDUUDWLYHLQFOXGLQJ´RQHZKRDFWVLQWKHsalvific DUHQDµ61 Stefan Schapdick in a more grudging way assigns to Moses a soteriological role: [-RKQ·V*RVSHO] also picks up certain events from [0RVHV·] life as they are described in the biblical traditions (cf. John 3:14; 6:31²33). The interest especially focuses on the life-saving or life-preserving role of Moses . . . . The Fourth Gospel refers to these specific traditions by emphasizing the true originator of all these life-preserving acts, God himself (cf. esp. John 6:32) . . . . Moses is depicted as the mediator of his divine will. Thus, the focus is primarily on God as the one who gives and preserves life.62 Schapdick is therefore willing to assign Moses a salvific role, but only if we keep firmly in mind the polemic expressed throughout the Gospel. Moses does not provide eternal life, and therefore no one should exalt him too highly, especially at the expense of Jesus. However, he pushes the polemic WRRIDUDQGSHUKDSVLQWKHZURQJGLUHFWLRQ´$OO(0RVHV·) efforts described LQWKHELEOLFDOWUDGLWLRQVZKLFKKHSHUIRUPHGRQEHKDOIRI*RG·VZLOODUHnothing EXWDQDUUDWLYH¶IRLO·RQZKLFKWKHRYHUDOOVRWHULRORJLFDOTXDOLW\RI-HVXV·GLYLQHUHYHODWLRQFDQEHGHPRQVWUDWHGµ63 Shapdick incorrectly fo-cuses the polemic on the person of Moses himself, not on the false con-FHSWLRQVRI0RVHVFXUUHQWDW-HVXV·WLPHZhich we have investigated above. Shapdick is no doubt correct that in John 3 and 6 Jesus wants to contrast the gift of life through Moses with that given by himself. He gives 60 Meeks, The Prophet-King6HHDOVR*LHVFKHQ´7KH'HDWKRI-HVXVµ 61 Harstine, Moses as a Character in the Fourth Gospel, 72. 62 6FKDSGLFN´5HOLJLRXV$XWKRULW\5H-(YDOXDWHGµ 63 6FKDSGLFN´5HOLJLRXV$XWKRULW\5H-(YDOXDWHGµ:KLOHQRWDVH[SOLFLW+DUVWLQHFRPHVWRDVLPLODUFRQFOXVLRQGHFODULQJ´7KRVHZKRZDQWZKDWLV true will not find it in Moses.µ+DUVWLQHMoses as a Character in the Fourth Gospel, 64. 42 Concordia Theological Quarterly 77 (2013) eternal life, while all those saved by Moses still died. But Jesus does not on that account discard the salvific works îó Ûþû½þÏ as described in Scripture, instead giving them proper perspective as acts that point forward to, and are encompassed by, the ultimate deliverance he gives. Moses is clearly described as an instrument of Yahweh, but that does not entail a polemic against the Moses of Scripture, but only the Moses claimed E\-HVXV·RSSRQHQWV7KHLUFRQFHSWLRQRI0RVHVDVGHPRQVWUDWHGDERYHhas perhaps been influenced by the ascent tradition, giving a view of ,VUDHO·VJUHDWHst leader that needed to be combated, but not at the expense RIWKHWUXH0RVHV7KHWHUPLQRORJ\´LQVWUXPHQWRIVDOYDWLRQµDWWHPSWVWRpreserve this proper balance. It endeavors to express the meaning of the îó clause found in John 1:17 by putting Moses in his proper place as an instrument, perhaps the most important instrument in the Old Testament, EXWDQLQVWUXPHQWQRQHWKHOHVVRI*RG·VVDYLQJZRUN7KLVVDYLQJZRUNboth pointed forward to the cross and occurred only because of the cross. God showed his love through Moses for the sake of Christ. God delivered his people îó Ûþû½þÏORRNLQJIRUZDUGWR&KULVW·VXOWLPDWHUHGHPSWLRQ Though the courtroom scene found in other texts is not explicit in John 3 and 6, the salvific role of Moses is intimately tied to his judicial roles. The acts of salvation îó Ûþû½þÏ point to Jesus; they witness to him just as in WKHWULDO0RUHRYHU-HVXVFOHDUO\GHPRQVWUDWHVWKDWFOLQJLQJWR<DKZHK·Vacts îó Ûþû½þÏ without believing in the Christ is of no avail. Moses testifies to Christ and accuses his opponents in these texts through his ac-tions as he mediates the gifts of Yahweh. In the prologue, John declares that Yahweh gave the gift of the ÷ÁöøÏ through Moses. In John 3 and 6, Jesus notes that God used Moses as his instrument to bring Israel bread from heaven to sustain them in their journey, and as the one who held up WKHVWDQGDUGRIVDOYDWLRQIRUDOOWRVHHDQGOLYH´$VLQJOHKLVWRULFDOHYHQWRIa divine act of life-saving presents Moses as its mediator. He has a kind of VRWHULRORJLFDOIXQFWLRQWKHQµ64 Jesus presents his own mission as in many ZD\VSDUDOOHOWR*RG·VVDOYDWLRQîó Ûþû½þÏ, with one important dif-IHUHQFHDV0HHNVHPSKDVL]HV´:KDWWDNHVSODFHVWKURXJK-HVXVLV . . . far VXSHULRUWRWKDWZKLFKZDVHQDFWHGE\0RVHVµ65 God worked through Moses to preserve temporal life in bringing his people from bondage and preserving them in the desert. Jesus comes to bring eternal life, which he will give by being lifted up for the sins of the world. Humanity does not have to choose between Moses and Jesus, for Moses pointed to Jesus, both 64 6FKDSGLFN´5HOLJLRXV$XWKRULW\5H-(YDOXDWHGµ 65 Meeks, The Prophet-King, 292. 0DURQGH0RVHVLQ-RKQ·V*RVSHO 43 through his words and the manner in which God gave his gifts through him. Conclusion The figure of Moses in the fourth Gospel cannot be understood prop-erly without considering together three elements of Johannine scholarship: -RKQ·VXQGHUVWDQGLQJRIWKH÷ÁöøÏ, the trial motif, and the polemic against the mystical ascent tradition. At issue in the Gospel according to John is the identity of Jesus, and this debate characterizes every encounter be-tween Jesus and his foes, especially when Moses is involved. In these texts, Jesus operates with a two-sided polemic. The first is against the exalted views of Moses current in mystical circles. Without a proper under-VWDQGLQJRIWKH-RKQ·VSROHPLFDJDLQVWWKHDVFHQWWUDGLWLRQRQHUXQVWKHdanger of completely misuQGHUVWDQGLQJ0RVHV·UROHLQ-RKQ·V*RVSHO,Ithis polemic is not taken far enough, John appears simply to be replacing Moses with Jesus as the greatest mystic. If it is taken too far, then the per-son of Moses is pitted against Jesus, which is exactly whaW-HVXV·RSSR-nents want to do. Second, regardless of how highly one views Moses, Jesus declares that they have interpreted him incorrectly. Not only is Moses not greater than Jesus, in fact Moses subordinates himself under Jesus by testi-fying to him. Jesus builds the case for his divine origin by claiming Moses and the ÷ÁöøÏ for himself. They are not to be discarded, but properly interpreted. This proper interpretation only comes through the lens of Christ, the incarnation of Yahweh in the flesh come to deliver eternal salvation to all people The Gospel of John indicates that the Jews wanted to drive a wedge between Moses and Jesus, pitting one against the other. Modern readers of John are tempted to do the same, but as this study demonstrates, John writes specifically to counter such an approach. Moses and the ÷ÁöøÏ are not the enemies of Jesus; in fact, when used properly, they both point to Christ. Moses did not ascend into heaven, but Jesus Christ has come down from heaven to deliver his people from their bondage to sin by ascending upon the cross.66 Instead of presentiQJDWLUDGHDJDLQVW0RVHV-RKQ·VGospel puts him in his proper, important place. God selected Moses as his chosen ´instrument of salvation,µ the one who would interact with <DKZHK´IDFHWRIDFHµ and who would testify to the mighty acts of a God who would one day take on flesh and deliver Moses and all humanity from sin. In every way, Moses and the ÷ÁöøÏ testify to Jesus as the one he 66 *LHVFKHQ´0HUNDYDK0\VWLFLVPDQGWKH*RVSHORI-RKQµ²11. 44 Concordia Theological Quarterly 77 (2013) claims to be: the Son of God, Yahweh in the flesh. Moses wrote about Jesus on every page of the Torah, for he wrote about Yahweh and his great deeds among the people of Israel. Next to the testimony of the Father KLPVHOI0RVHVLVWKHUHIRUH-HVXV·JUHDWHVWDGYRFDWHZKLFKPDNHVKLPWKHDFFXVHURI-HVXV·RSSRQHQWV5HMecting Jesus means the rejection of Moses and indeed Yahweh himself, for as Moses declared, Jesus is the visible image of Yahweh. In the words he wrote, in the actions that Yahweh did WKURXJKKLP0RVHVFRQVWDQWO\DQGFRQVLVWHQWO\SRLQWVWR-HVXV-RKQ·Vargument is encapsulated in his prologue: the ÷ÁöøÏ came through Moses, and it testifies to í¼úóÏ ôëe  õ¿ùïóë, found only in Jesus.