I want to continue to answers some questions on typology. In my first post I answered What is a Type?
Why Should we Study Types?
Because God Himself used types (Heb.8:5; 9:8-9; 10:19-20). Revelation mentions “Lamb” 29 times. Christ used types (Luke 24:25-44; John 6:32-35). I take Christ expounding Himself from the OT to the two disciples on the road to Emmaus as at least in part in types. The Bible uses vocabulary that speak of types in relationship to the Tabernacle: Heb. 8:5 “example” (hupodeigma), “shadow” (skia), Heb. 9:8-9 “figure” (parabole), and Heb. 10:1 “image” (eikon). Also in relationship to the Wilderness wanderings (1 Cor. 10:6, 11 “examples” tupoi). Zuck makes an important point when he states that typos is not always a technical word. Only 1 of the 15 times typos is used is theological (Hebrews 8:5).
What are the Different Views Concerning Types?
A. No types in the Bible: The Liberal view which denies the supernatural aspect of predictive prophecy.
B. Excessive use of types: Every nut, bolt, socket, and board of the Tabernacle typifies Christ. Every puddle in the Wilderness typifies the baptism. Walter L. Wilson has 1163 types in the OT (Wilson’s Dictionary of Bible Types) this is in stark contrast with Zuck who sees only 17 types.
Allegorizers accuse Dispenstionalists of allegorizing in their typology and I believe their accusation is correct in some cases: “While Dispensationalists are extreme literalists, they are very inconsistent ones. They are literalists in interpreting prophecy. But in the interpreting of history, they carry the principle of typical interpretation to an extreme which has rarely been exceeded even by the most ardent of allegorizers” (Allis, Oswald T. Prophecy and the Church, p.21) p.8 in Things to Come. The Scofield Study Bible provides an example on page 89 in reference to Exodus 15:25 where God tells Moses to cast a tree in the bitter waters of Marah which then became sweet: “The ‘tree’ is the cross (Gal. 3:13), which became sweet to Christ as the expression of the Father’s will (John 18:11).”
Is the allegorical and typological interpretation the same method or different methods?
Ammillennialists see little difference. The allegorical interpretation finds meanings in a text that is foreign, peculiar, or hidden. It is independent of the literal meaning of a text. The typological interpretation proceeds directly out of the literal explanation.
C. The Moderate view: The are two kinds of types which is Milton S. Terry’s view (255-256).
An innate type is specifically designated in Scripture. An inferred type is strongly suggested. If the whole of the Tabernacle or Wilderness journey is typical then are the parts typical (Dr. Steven’s view). Bernard Ramm “If the whole (e.g., the Tabernacle, the Wilderness journey) is typical, then the parts are typical. It is up to the exegetical ability of the interpreter to determine additional types in the parts of these wholes” (228).
D. Types are types only if the NT designates: “The former (type) must not only resemble the latter, but must have been designed to resemble the latter. It must have been so designed in it’s original institution” (Bishop Marsh). This is preferrable view to avoid the excesses of the Scofield example.
How do we interpret a type?
Zuck gives the following helpful tips.
A. There must be a resemblance between the type and the antitype. But there must be more than a resemblance.
B. There must be a historical reality (Hebrew 8:5; 9:23-24).
C. There must be a prefiguring. “Does this mean that people in the OT knew that various thing were types?” Answer: Hebrews 9:8. Illustrations look back: Elijah (James 5:17) Jonah (Mt. 12:40). Types look forward. Allegorical interpretation looks behind.
D. There must be a heightening of truth. “The antitype were on a higher plane than the types” (Zuck, 174).
E. There must be divine design.
F. There must be a designation of a type in the NT. “Scripture must in some way indicate that an item it typical” (Zuck, 176).