New Testament Mirrors Old

There are any number of parallels between the Old Testament and the New Testament in the Bible. The most obvious is the Old Covenant made with Abraham and the New Covenant that Jesus refers to at the Last Supper, and of course, the twelve tribes of Israel which correspond to the twelve disciples. While reading Genesis a couple days ago, I stumbled across another. The following is the passage that made the connection for me:

I am your brother Joseph, whom you sold into Egypt. Now do not be grieved or angry with yourselves, because you sold me here, for God sent me before you to preserve life. For the famine has been in the land these two years, and there are still five years in which there will be neither plowing nor harvesting. God sent me before you to preserve for you a remnant in the earth, and to keep you alive by a great deliverance. (Genesis 45:4-7)

This is Joseph speaking to his brothers. Earlier, Joseph's jealous brothers sold him into slavery, a transaction that landed him in Egypt where he eventually became the second-in-command of the entire nation. God used Joseph to prepare for the famine and thereby save the lives of many, particularly those of Jacob and his family. The key verse is 45:7 when Joseph says that he was sent "to preserve for you a remnant in the earth, and to keep you alive by a great deliverance."

So where is the connection to the New Testament? For that we have to focus on the transaction that took place when Joseph was sold into slavery. It was Judah's idea to sell his brother. As he says:

What will we gain if we kill our brother and cover up his blood? Come, let's sell him to the Ishmaelites and not lay our hands on him; after all, he is our brother, our own flesh and blood. (Gen. 37:26-27)

And they sold him for 20 sheckels of silver.

Sound familiar?

Now we turn to the New Testament:

Then one of the Twelve—the one called Judas Iscariot—went to the chief priests and asked, "What are you willing to give me if I hand [Jesus] over to you?" So they counted out for him thirty silver coins. From then on Judas watched for an opportunity to hand him over. (Matthew 26:14-16)

The price for an adult male slave according to Exodus 21:32 was thirty shekels, which may be how the chief priests arrived at the number for the price of Jesus. Joseph was only seventeen at the time he was sold, therefore he may have commanded a lesser price. (Besides that, the price of thirty shekels was spoken by God to Moses--the great-great nephew of Joseph.)
So Judah sold Joseph into slavery for 20 sheckels of silver, a transaction through which God saved the Israelites from famine.
And Judas sold out Jesus for 30 pieces of silver, a transaction through which all mankind was saved.

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