Jesus in the Old Testament

Jeff Smelser

Centreville, Virginia
Summer 1999

(Part 3)

Lesson 16    Thirty pieces of silver

The Event Prophesied     Judas' bargain

The OT passage        Zech 11:4-14?

Study of the OT context

the broad context

If we look at Joseph's life, we see a type of Christ. Betrayed by his brethren, he was sold for silver, condemned for a crime he did not commit, but then raised up to sit at the right hand of Pharoah, “to save much people alive.”

For what price was Joseph sold?

For what crime was he imprisoned?

How did Joseph “save much people alive”? Especially what people did he save, and how is this a foreshadowing of Christ's work?

Under the law of Moses, if an ox gored a slave to death, what price did the owner have to pay for the loss of the slave? (Ex. 21:32)

the specific context

Note that Mt. 27 does not cite Zechariah. In fact, Matthew does cite what OT prophet?

Nonetheless, Mt. 27:9 is often reckoned to be a reference to Zechariah 11:12-13. There are similarities, but it is not an exact quote of Zechariah, not in Hebrew, and much less in the LXX.

If Zechariah 11:12-13 is the passage to which Matthew refers, why would he introduce it as coming from Jeremiah? Compare the quotation of Psalm 95 in Heb. 4:7. Did David write all the Psalms? Did David write Psalm 95? Does the Hebrew writer mean to say that David wrote Psalm 95?

In Zech. 11:12, For what service were the thirty pieces of silver paid?

Do you see sarcasm in verse 13? If so, in what words?

What was done with the thirty pieces of silver in verse 13?

Study of the NT context

the broad context


Judas didn't just go bad, but was bad. What did Jesus call him in Jn. 17:12?
How did Jesus characterize Judas in Jn. 6:70-71? What does the word “devil” mean? How is it translated in 1 Tim. 3:11, 2 Tim 3:3 and Tit 2:3?

When Judas complained about the wasted ointment in Jn. 12:1-6, what was his real interest? Does John indicate that this was an aberration, or that this was typical behavior for Judas?

Read Mt. 26:6-15. If we are to understand that 14-15 describe events that immediately followed verses 6-15, can you explain why Judas made the deal with the chief priests when he did?

The Bargain

Why did Judas have to seek opportunity to deliver Jesus ( Mt. 26:16)? See Mt. 21:46, Lk. 22:6

The Betrayal

Jn. 13:2 says, "the devil having already put into the heart of betray him" When did the devil put this into the heart of Judas?

Was the walk out to the mount of Olives unusual for Jesus? Is there any indication that Judas would have known where Jesus would be going? Lk 22:39, Jn. 18:1-2

Read Mt. 26:48-49, Lk 22:47-48

The Regret

Read Mt.27:3ff. The text says, "Saw that he was condemned." Saw that who was condemned? Jesus, or Judas?

The KJV says Judas "repented himself." But the word here is not the one that represents the repentance such as in Luk3 13:5, Acts 2:38, or Acts 17:30. The word here only indicates regret. Can one regret his sins and still not obtain forgiveness? Read 2 Cor. 7:8-10 and be prepared to discuss regret and repentance.

A Last Look - The mindset of the betrayer

Did Judas know Jesus knew? Jn. 13:27

Did Judas know Jesus was innocent? Mt. 27:4

Are there people like Judas today?

Lesson 17    The disciples flee

The Event Prophesied    Mt. 26:56

The OT passage         Zech 13:7

Study of the OT context

the broad context

Remember that Zechariah prophesies after the return from captivity at a time when the Jews are busy rebuilding the temple, but still do not have their own king sitting on the throne of David. Zechariah 12 looks forward to the future and verse 10 says, “I will pour out on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the Spirit of grace and of supplication, so that they will look on Me whom they have pierced...”

Then in Zech. 13:1, the text begins, “In that day a fountain will be opened for the house of David and for the inhabitants of Jerusalem, for sin and for impurity.

What is Zech 13:1 talking about?

In the day that the fountain is opened, what three things would be cut off from the land?

What kind of prophet is in view? (Cf. 13:3-6)

Why was the intent of such prophets? (13:4)

How would putting on a hairy robe aid in that attempt? (Cf. 2 Kings 1:1-8)

Why wound would they have wounds (13:2, cf. 1 Kings 18:28) and what would they claim about those wounds?

What is meant by “the land” in Zech. 13:2?

    the specific context

In this context, the Lord says, “Awake, O sword, against My Shepherd, And against the man, My associate...Strike the Shepherd that the sheep may be scattered...”

Who is the Lord's Shepherd?

Where earlier in Zechariah was there a reference to a Shepherd that was be messianic?

Summarize what Zechariah says in these two places about the Lord's Shepherd.

What would will happen to the Sheep when the shepherd is struck?

Study of the NT context

After eating the Passover supper, Jesus went out into the mount of Olives accompanied by eleven. There, he said to them “All ye shall be offended in me this night, and quoted Zech. 13:7. (Mt. 26:30-31, Mk. 14:26-27). What did this lead Peter to say?

John's account tells us that Jesus very specifically said, “the hour cometh, yea, is come, that ye shall be scattered, every man to his own, and shall leave me alone: and yet I am not alone...” (Jn. 16:32) Why could Jesus say he was not alone?

Which of the three men did take with him when he went apart to pray?

When Judas led the armed party to the place where Jesus was did the disciples offer an resistance? Did Jesus encourage them to resist?

What does Mt. 26:56 say the disciples did at this point?

Did their flight represent a failure of courage? (Remember Mt. 26:31)

Which was greater, the courage shown in Mt. 26:51 or the lack of courage shown in Mt. 26:56?

Immediately after the words, “they all left him and fled” (Mk. 14:50), Mark mentions a particular young man and the particular circumstances of his flight. What were those circumstances? Do we know who this young man was?

Matthew Mark, Luke and John all tell us that Peter followed Jesus when he was led away. Matthew, Mark, and Luke all note that Peter followed, “afar off”. John mentions another disciple who was known to the high priest, and who went with Jesus into the high priest's house. Do we know who that other disciple was?

Tell of Peter's denial of the Lord.

Identification of the kind of prophecy

Explicit Prediction?
Prediction using shadow(s)

Lesson 18    Jesus' trial and crucifixion

The Event Prophesied    various occurrences during Jesus trial and crucifixion

The OT passages

Ps. 118:22-23 "The stone which the builders rejected is become the head of the corner. This is Jehovah's doing; It is marvellous in our eyes.”

  1. Mt 21:42; Mr 12:10; Lu 20:17; Ac 4:11; Eph 2:20; 1Pe 2:4,7

  2. Ps. 118:26 - “Blessed be he that cometh in the name of Jehovah: We have blessed you out of the house of Jehovah.” - seems to have been quoted by the multitudes (Mt 21:9; 23:39; Mr 11:9; Lu 19:38), thus evidencing an understanding of the Messianic import of Ps. 118

  3. Explicit Prophecy

Ps. 31:5 “Into thy hand I commend my spirit: Thou hast redeemed me, O Jehovah, thou God of truth.”

  1. Jn. 15:25

  2. a typical Psalm of David describing his life

    10 For my life is spent with sorrow, And my years with sighing: My strength faileth because of mine iniquity
    22 As for me, I said in my haste, I am cut off from before thine eyes: Nevertheless thou heardest the voice of my supplications When I cried unto thee.

  3. Shadow, however notice how thorough a shadow David's life was:

4 Pluck me out of the net that they have laid privily for me; For thou art my stronghold.
11 Because of all mine adversaries I am become a reproach, Yea, unto my neighbors exceedingly, And a fear to mine acquaintance: They that did see me without fled from me.
13 While they took counsel together against me, they devised to take away my life. (Mt 27:1)

Ps. 35:19 (lesson erroneously says, 31:19) Let not them that are mine enemies wrongfully rejoice over me; Neither let them wink with the eye that hate me without a cause.” (LXX, 34:19 misou=nte/j me dwrea\n )

Ps. 69:4, (LXX, 68:5 misou=nte/j me dwrea\n )

  1. Jn. 15:25 e)mishsa/n me dwrea/n

  2. Shadow, but again, see how thorough:

9 For the zeal of thy house hath eaten me up; And the reproaches of them that reproach thee are fallen upon me. (Joh 2:7)
25 Let their habitation be desolate; Let none dwell in their tents. (Ac 1:20)
21 They gave me also gall for my food; And in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink. Mt 27:34,48; Mr 15:23; Joh 19:29

Is. 50:6-7 “I gave my back to the smiters, and my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair; I hid not my face from shame and spitting. For the Lord Jehovah will help me; therefore have I not been confounded: therefore have I set my face like a flint, and I know that I shall not be put to shame.”

  1. Mt 26:67; 27:26; Joh 18:22

  2. Here, I think we have to regard this as Explicit Prediction on account of the whole section being devoted to the Servant of the Lord. See the following:

          Is 53:1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 , 10, 11, 12

1 Who hath believed our message? and to whom hath the arm of Jehovah been revealed?
Joh 12:38; Ro 1:16; 10:16; Isa 51:9; 1Co 1:18
2 For he grew up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him.
3 He was despised, and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and as one from whom men hide their face he was despised; and we esteemed him not (Mr 9:12 And he said unto them, Elijah indeed cometh first, and restoreth all things: and how is it written of the Son of man, that he should suffer many things and be set at nought?) Heb 4:15; Joh 1:10,11
4 Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows; yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.Mt 8:17; 1Pe 2:24
5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.
1Pe 2:24
6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and Jehovah hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.
1Pe 2:25
7 He was oppressed, yet when he was afflicted he opened not his mouth; as a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and as a sheep that before its shearers is dumb, so he opened not his mouth.
Mt 26:63; 27:12,14; Mr 14:61; 15:5; 1Pe 2:23; Ac 8:32
8 By oppression and judgment he was taken away; and as for his generation, who [among them] considered that he was cut off out of the land of the living for the transgression of my people to whom the stroke [was due]?
9 And they made his grave with the wicked, and with a rich man in his death; although he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth.
Mt 27:57,58,60; 1Pe 2:22; 1Jo 3:5
10 Yet it pleased Jehovah to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see [his] seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of Jehovah shall prosper in his hand.
1Pe 2:24
11 He shall see of the travail of his soul, [and] shall be satisfied: by the knowledge of himself shall my righteous servant justify many; and he shall bear their iniquities.
Joh 17:3; 2Pe 1:3; 1Jo 2:1;
12 Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he poured out his soul unto death, and was numbered with the transgressors: yet he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.
Ps 2:8; Php 2:9; Col 2:15; Mr 15:28; Lu 22:37; 23:34; Ro 8:34; Heb 7:25; 9:24; 1Jo 2:1

Ex. 12:46, Nu 9:12

  1. Jn. 19:36

  2. Shadow

Zech 12:10

Lesson 19    Jesus, a Priest after the order of Melchizedek

The Event Prophesied    Jesus' sacrifice

The OT passages        Gen. 14, Psalm 110:4, Zech. 6:9-10

Study of the OT contexts

How many kings were allied with Chedorlaomer?

Why did Chedorlaomer and his allies wage war against the five kings mentioned in verse 2?

Who was king in the region where Lot had settled?

Who won the battle?

What became of Lot and his family as a result of the battle?

How was Lot rescued?

Who was Melchizedek according to Gen. 14:18?

Who gave a tenth of the spoils to whom? (See Gen. 14:20 and Heb. 7:6)

What goods did the king of Sodom say Abram could keep? (cf. Gen. 14:11 and 14:16.)

Why did Abram refuse to keep the goods? (Gen. 14:22-24, cf. 13:13.)

Suppose the Bible ended with Genesis 50, or even with Deuteronomy 34, and analyze this story in Gen. 14 as just an example of ancient literature rather than as God's word. What would you imagine was the writer's purpose in including Melchizedek in the story?

With the coming of the Law of Moses, who could be a priest? (Ex. 29:9, Num. 3:10)

After the reign of David, who had a rightful claim to the throne? (2 Sam. 7:12-16) From what tribe were these men?

In light of the previous two questions, what is astonishing about Zechariah 6:11-13?

Note the prophecy in Psalm 110:1-4. Do you see the same astonishing prediction?

In light of the previous three questions, how is it relevant that the one addressed in Psalm 110:4 would be a priest after the order of Melchizedek?

Study of the NT contexts

Jesus is a priest after the order of Melchizedek as opposed to being a priest after the order of whom? (Heb. 7:11)

In contrast to the Levitical priests, Melchizedek and Jesus were priests "without father, without mother, without genealogy." What does that mean ? (Heb. 7:6, Ex. 29:9, Num. 3:10)

What does the name "Melchizedek" mean, and what does "Salem" mean?

Read Heb. 7:4-9 carefully. Who blessed whom, who gave tithes to whom, and therefore, who was greater than whom?

If the Levites descended from Levi who "was yet in the loins" of Abram, then which priesthood is greater, that of Melchizedek, or that of the Levites?

Is Jesus a greater or lesser priest than were the Levitical priests?

How many comparisons can you make between Melchizedek and Jesus?

What implications did Jesus' being a priest after the order of Melchizedek have in regard to the law of Moses? (Heb. 7:11-19)

Lesson 20    Mt. 12:41

The Event Prophesied    3 days and 3 nights

The OT passage        Jonah

Study of the OT contexts

the broad context

During whose reign did Jonah live? (2 Ki 14:25)

For what purpose did God send Jonah to Ninevah?

Ninevah was the capital city of what people?

Why did Jonah not want to go to Ninevah?

Where did Jonah intend to go instead?

What convinced Jonah to go to Ninevah?

The Sailors Learned a Lesson

To whom did each of the sailors call for help? (Jonah 1:5)

To whom did the captain urge Jonah to call? (Jonah 1:6)

After reluctantly concluding that they would have to throw Jonah overboard, to whom did the sailors pray? (Jonah 1:14)

After throwing Jonah overboard, what did the sailors do?

What lesson did they learn?

The People of Ninevah Learned a Lesson

This one is obvious - what did they learn?

Jonah Learned a Lesson

Of course he learned that he couldn't hide from the Lord. But after he went to Ninevah, there was another lesson for Jonah. What did Jonah do after proclaiming Ninevah's destruction?

What did the Lord do for Jonah that made Jonah very happy?

What upset Jonah, and how much?

When Jonah complained, what was the Lord's response?

What lesson did Jonah learn? Who would be the ultimate demonstration of this lesson?

Four Modes

Jonah's behavior can be described as follows:

First, he was running from God.
Second, he was running to God.
Third, he was running with God.
Fourth, he was running ahead of God.


Study of the NT context

 “As Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the whale; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.” (Mt.12:40)

On what day was Jesus crucified? (Mk. 15:42, Jn. 19:31, and especially Luke 23:54-24:1)

On what day did Jesus say he would be raised? (Mt. 16:21) On what day did Paul say Jesus was raised? (1 Cor. 15:4)

On what day of the week was Jesus raised? (Mt. 28:1ff, Mk. 16:1ff, Lk. 24:1ff, Jn. 20:1)

How many days, as we count days, would have passed from the time of Jesus' death to the time of his resurrection?

How many nights, as we count nights, would have passed from the time of Jesus' death to the time of his resurrection?

Examine the account of Cornelius' conversion. Notice that Luke carefully records the passing of time between Cornelius' vision and Peter's arrival.

Day 1   Day 2   Day 3   Day 4  
Ac 10:3   Ac 10:9   Ac 10:23b   Ac 10:24, 30  
“About the ninth hour of the day...”   “Now on the morrow, as they were on their journey...”   “And on the morrow, he arose and went forth with them...”   And on the morrow they entered into Caesarea  
Angel appears to Cornelius, messengers are sent   Peter sees a vision, receives the messengers, and lodges them   Peter departs Joppa for Caesarea   Cornelius said, “Four days ago...”  

Q.    If on Thursday you speak of an event that happened the previous Monday, how many “days ago” would you say it happened?

Q.    What did the two men on the road to Emmaus say according to Luke 24:21? On what day did they say this? (Luke 24:13)

In Xenophon's Cyropaedia, 6.3.11 (4th century B.C.):

"And what are they doing now?" asked Cyrus. "They are being marshalled in battle array," they answered; "and yesterday and the day before they were doing the same."

<= <= <= <= <= <= <= <= <= <=

“and the day before”
(lit. - “third day”)  
“and yesterday”   “They are being marshalled in battle array”  

The Greek text, and a more literal translation:

nu=n d', e)/fh o( Ku=roj, ti/ poiou=sin; --e)kta/ttontai, e)/fasan: kai\ e)xqe\j de\ kai\ tri/thn h(me/ran to\ au)to\ tou=to e)/pratton.

“And now,” Cyrus asked, “What are they doing?” “They are being drawn out in battle order, and yesterday, and also a third day this same thing they were doing.”

Q.    Notice that the day before yesterday is considered the third day prior. How would you count back to the third day prior?

Q.    Explain how it could be said Jesus was in the grave for three days.


Even if we can explain how Friday afternoon to Sunday morning could be called three days, how do we explain “three days and three nights”? The following information will serve as the basis for our discussion of this question in class. There are no questions to answer, but look over the passages mentioned, giving special attention to 1 Sam. 30:12-13.

Gen. 7:4    I will cause it to rain upon the earth forty days and forty nights

Gen. 7:12    And the rain was upon the earth forty days and forty nights

Job 2:13    So they sat down with him upon the ground seven days and seven nights

Jon. 1:17    Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights


Saul, after Samuel came up from Sheol
1Sa 28:20    “...and there was no strength in him; for he had eaten no bread all the day, nor all the night.”

Esther's charge to the Jews
Est 4:16        “neither eat nor drink three days, night or day

Of 7 references to Moses' 40 days and 40 nights on Mt. Sinai, 3 make note that he neither ate bread nor drank water.

Ex. 24:18    Moses was in the mount forty days and forty nights
Ex. 34:28    And he was there with Jehovah forty days and forty nights; he did neither eat bread, nor drink water
Dt. 9:9        I abode in the mount forty days and forty nights;  I did neither eat bread nor drink water.
Dt. 9:11        at the end of forty days and forty nights, that Jehovah gave me the two tables of stone
Dt. 9:18        And I fell down before Jehovah, as at the first, forty days and forty nights; I did neither eat bread nor drink water
Dt. 9:25         I fell down before Jehovah the forty days and forty nights
Dt. 10:10    And I stayed in the mount, as at the first time, forty days and forty nights

Elijah, when God sent him to Horeb
1 Ki. 19:8    went in the strength of that food forty days and forty nights

Jesus in the wilderness
Mt. 4:2        And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights

the Egyptian whom David interrogated

1 Sam. 30:12     he had eaten no bread, nor drunk any water, three days and three nights.

<= <= <= <= <= <= <= <= <= <=


1 Sam 30:12, 13 (NAS)  
“...he had not eaten bread or drunk water for three days and three nights

“And he said, 'My Master left me behind when I fell sick three days ago.”  

“In the Jerusalem Talmud (cited by Lightfoot) it is said 'that a day and a night together make up a hnwe (a nuxqh/meron), and that any part of such a period is counted as the whole'” (Alford on Mt. 12:40)

“A day and a night constitute a hnwe (a full day), and part of of a hnwe counts as a whole hnwe” (jShab., 12a 15,17; it is in this light that we are to understand Mt. 12:40)” TDNT, vol. 2, p. 950

Lesson 21    “my flesh also shall dwell in hope”

The Event Prophesied    The Resurrection

The OT passage        Psalm 16
The NT passage        Acts 2

The day of Pentecost was an annual feast observed by the Jews. It took place 50 days after Passover. Remember that Jesus was crucified at the time of the Passover immediately prior to the Pentecost feast mentioned in Acts 2. Though they had been scattered around the world during the preceding centuries, many Jews still returned to Jerusalem for these annual feasts.

1.    On what day were the apostles gathered together in one place?

2.    What sound was heard?

3.    What appeared above the apostles' heads?

4.    Being filled with the Holy Spirit the apostles began to speak with other tongues. What is meant by "other" tongues?

5.    Many of the Jews visiting in Jerusalem on this occasion had been born and raised in foreign nations. Did they all speak the same native language?

6.    What did they find amazing?

7.    Some supposed the apostles were drunk. Peter offered a different explanation. He said that what was happening was what had been prophesied by a certain Old Testament prophet. What prophet?

8.    Beginning in verse 22, Peter speaks of Jesus. He first refers to Jesus as a man approved of God. What was the evidence that Jesus was approved of God?

9.    Peter said, “even as ye yourselves know” (2:22). Is it reasonable to suppose most of those in the audience knew of Jesus and the miracles he had done? (Lk. 4:14; Jn. 7:10-13, 25- 31)

10.    Peter charges his audience with having crucified Jesus, but says that this was really brought about by whom? How?

11.    If Peter's audience is comprised largely of Jews from far away places, how is it that Peter can say "ye...did crucify and slay"?

12.    From what psalm of David does Peter quote in Acts 2:25-28?

13.    Of whom does Peter say David spoke?


    Special Assignment: Hades

14.    On the basis of Acts 2:29 (with which you might compare Acts 13:35-37), explain why it is that David could not have been speaking of himself.

Pause here to consider the state of mind of devout Jews in the audience. First, consider the connection Jesus made between the Spirit of God and the coming of the kingdom (Mt. 12:28). Was this a connection that a devout Jew would have recognized? (Ezekiel 37).

Now, given the events described in Acts 2:1-4 and the reminder of the promise in Joel 2, what would a devout Jew in the audience be thinking?

Next, consider the events surrounding the previous occasion that many of these Jews would have been in Jerusalem. What had happened then?

With these considerations in the background, what would Peter's assertion that Jesus was a man approved of God have led them to wonder?

Remember that these people believed in the Psalms as God's word and believed that David wrote of the Messiah in those Psalms (cf. Mt. 22:43-44 & Psalm 110:1). Having made not of the fact that David would not have been speaking of himself in Ps. 16:10, and reflecting upon the pouring out of God's spirit, the signs Jesus did, and the events that had transpired 7 weeks earlier, in what direction would the minds of devout Jews in the audience be going?  

15.    Who was not left unto Hades, nor did his flesh see corruption?

16.    To whom did the words “Moreover my flesh also shall dwell in hope” belong, and what do they mean?

17.    The conclusion Peter reaches is that the promises made to David concerning the ultimate heir to his throne are fulfilled in Jesus. In other words, "God hath made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom ye crucified." What was another word used by the Jews that meant the same thing as "Christ"?

16.    What was the reaction of the audience to Peter's sermon?

Additional topics:

Ascension to right hand of God (Ac 2:34-35, Mt 22:44, 1 Co 15:25)    Ps. 110:1
(Mt. 26:64a, Lk 22:69 "from henceforth")    (That this passage was recognized as Messianic is evidenced by Mt. 22:41-46)

Coming in Judgment        Dan. 7:13    (Mt. 24:30, 26:64b)