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Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The Glorious Mysteries In The Old Testament

The Glorious Mysteries of the Rosary are all focused on the last events of Christ on Earth, the birth of the Church through the Holy Spirit and the Glorification of Mary. Yet all of these events have been prefigured in the Old Testament and bring deeper meaning to life of Christ.

So begin with the Resurrection of Jesus.

The Resurrection of Jesus is prefigured in the Creation of Adam. We are told in Genesis 2:7 that the LORD God formed man of dust from the ground.

So just as Adam was brought forth from the ground at his creation, Jesus was brought out of the ground to begin the New Creation. But that is not all.

Genesis 2:8 And the LORD God planted a garden in Eden, in the east; and there he put the man whom he had formed.

So God placed Adam in the Garden of Eden, but what is less known is what the Gospel of John has to say about where Jesus was crucified and buried.

John 19:41 Now in the place where he was crucified there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb where no one had ever been laid.

On Easter Sunday Jesus says to Mary Magdeline
John 20:15 Jesus said to her, "Woman, why are you weeping? Whom do you seek?" Supposing him to be the gardener,...

Mary thinks that he is the gardener - why - because he IS the Gardener. The original one who placed Adam in the garden of Eden. Now, Jesus begins the New Creation in a New Garden.

How about the Ascension

The Ascension is prefigured in at least one place and that is in the Jewish Temple on the Feast day of Yom Kipor - or the day of atonement! This was the only day during the year that the high priest was allowed to enter into the most holy part of the temple to sprinkle the blood of bulls and goats on the mercy seat to atone for sins.

Leviticus 16:11-13 "Aaron shall present the bull as a sin offering for himself, and shall make atonement for himself and for his house; he shall kill the bull as a sin offering for himself. And he shall take a censer full of coals of fire from the altar before the LORD, and two handfuls of sweet incense beaten small; and he shall bring it within the veil and put the incense on the fire before the LORD, that the cloud of the incense may cover the mercy seat which is upon the testimony, lest he die;

Now to for the priest to enter into the Holy of Holies, he had to ascend several flights of stairs, while he carries in this blood to atone for sins. So it would prefiguratively appear as though he was ascending on a cloud of smoke.

So now it makes more sense why Jesus was ascending on a cloud into heaven. What was he going to do there?
Hebrews 9:11-12 But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things that have come, then through the greater and more perfect tent (not made with hands, that is, not of this creation) he entered once for all into the Holy Place, taking not the blood of goats and calves but his own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption.

So the OT priests were prefiguring with animals blood what Jesus would ultimately do with his own blood. And that is go into the Most Holy place in heaven and atone for our sins.

The Coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost.

Pentecost is so rich in symbolism, but the most obvious one is how the Holy Spirit in the form of tongues of fire appears over the heads of the apostles.

This is prefigured - I think - almost every time fire miraculously appears in the Old Testament.

Hebrews 12:29 for our God is a consuming fire.

Isaiah 6:5-7 Isaiah sees a vision of God and notices his own sinfulness. Then flew one of the seraphim to me, having in his hand a burning coal which he had taken with tongs from the altar. And he touched my mouth, and said: "Behold, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away, and your sin forgiven."

So when fire touches his mouth his sins are forgiven. So God is a consuming fire, fire cleanses from sin, and now listen to what Jesus has to say. The Holy Spirit, who is that consuming fire, is given to the apostles that the sins of others might be forgiven.

John 20:22-23 And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained."
The Fire of the Holy Spirit is closely associated with cleansing of sins and the transformation from sin into salvation.

Assumption of Mary

I am speculating here, but I think that one place that Mary’s assumption into heaven is prefigured is in Adam and Eve’s expulsion from the Garden of Eden. Both Adam and Eve left the Garden of paradise with their bodies - So it seems fitting that if the new Adam - Jesus - enters the heavenly Paradise with his body, it would also be fitting that the new Eve - Mary - also enters into heaven with her body as well.

Finally, the Coronation of Mary.

I think that this is prefigured in the life of Solomon, who was the King of Israel. He had so many wives, there could be endless contention over the role of queen. He solves this problem by making his mother queen.

Adonijah asks Bathsheba to mediate his petition before King Solomon and this is what Bathsheba said:
1 Kings 2:18-19 Bathsheba said, "Very well; I will speak for you to the king." So Bathsheba went to King Solomon, to speak to him on behalf of Adonijah. And the king rose to meet her, and bowed down to her; then he sat on his throne, and had a seat brought for the king's mother; and she sat on his right.

Notice that a throne is brought for the king’s own mother. This begins the role of the Gebirah - or the Queen mother. From this time on, all of the kings of Israel have their own mothers as their queens. Jesus follows in this tradition and makes his own mother queen of all that He is king, namely, all of creation.

Future Fulfillment.

Finally, while meditating on the entirety of these mysteries I notice that they were all pointing to the events at the end of the world.
The dead will be raised, and then caught up to meet Jesus when he comes. Fire will fall from heaven and consume all of creation. Finally, humanity will be taken into the new heavens and new earth where we will be crowned with glory.


Anonymous said...

Thank you. I enjoy these very much, and learn from them.

Anonymous said...

nothing to do with what i needed what about judith