What are Shadows, Types and Antitypes?

 

 God, in His great wisdom gave the Jew a law, which would prepare them for things to come. God’s law given by Moses (the Old Testament) was a shadow of the New Law given by Christ (the New Testament).

 Heb 10:1  For the law, having a shadow of the good things to come and not the very image of those things, can never, with those sacrifices which they offered continually year by year, make those who come unto it perfect.

 We all know what a shadow is. In the sunlight our shadow is cast down on the ground. Our shadow in the sunlight appears as an outlined image. Looking at us directly, our image is more defined than the shadow.

The bible also uses the word “TYPE” with the same principle as shadow. See the two translations below.

 

·         Greek Translation (Strong’s) for Shadow:

4639 skia skia skee’-ah

AV-shadow 7; 7

1) shadow

1a) shade caused by the interception of light

1b) an image cast by an object and representing the form of that object

 

·         Greek Translation (Strong’s) for Type:

5179 tupov tupos too’-pos

AV-ensample 5, print 2, figure 2, example 2, pattern 2, fashion 1, manner 1, form 1; 16

1) the mark of a stroke or blow, print

2) a figure formed by a blow or impression

2a) of a figure or image

 

A 'Type' is: A biblical person, place, or thing described in the Old Testament, prefiguring a future biblical person, place, or thing, described in the New Testament or ‘antitype'.

Antitype is the answer or counterpart of the type. Comparing antitype to type is like comparing an image to a shadow.

 

·         Greek Translation (Strong’s) for Antitype:

499 antitupov antitupos an-teet’-oo-pon

AV- like figure whereinto 1, 2

1) a thing formed after some pattern

2) a thing resembling another, its counterpart

2a) something in the Messianic times which answers to the type,

 

The word "antitype" used in the NKJV version.

1Pe 3:20 who formerly were disobedient, when once the Divine longsuffering waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight souls, were saved through water. 21 ¶  There is also an antitype which now saves us––baptism (not the removal of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God), through the resurrection of Jesus Christ,

This same verse is translated as "like figure" in most other versions.

1Pe 3:20 who formerly were disobedient, when once the Divine longsuffering waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight souls, were saved through water. 21 ¶  The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:

 

The word "type" used in the NKJV version.

Rom 5:14 But death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those who had not sinned in the likeness of the transgression of Adam, who is the type of Him who was to come;

 This same verse is translated as "figure" in most other versions.

Rom 5:14  Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam’s transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come.

Notice above the word type is translated as figure and the word anti-type is translated as like figure.

God gave us a better law (New Testament), one that is the direct image and not a reflection of how He wants us to obey Him.

Heb 10:1  For the law, having a shadow of the good things to come and not the very image of those things, can never, with those sacrifices which they offered continually year by year, make those who come unto it perfect.

 Heb 8:5  who serve that which is a copy and shadow of the heavenly things, even as Moses is warned of God when he is about to make the tabernacle: for, See, saith he, that thou make all things according to the pattern that was showed thee in the mount.

 

But just like the Old Law helped the Jew to understand the New Law, we also can benefit from looking at the Old Law and see how it compares to the New Law. But we must keep in mind; the Old Law has vanished away.

Heb 8:13  In that he saith, A new covenant, he hath made the first old. Now that which decayeth and waxeth old is ready to vanish away.

A likeness must exist between the 'type' of the Old Testament and the 'antitype' of the New Testament. The 'antitype' of the New Testament is always greater than the type or shadow of the Old Testament.

The scripture Rom. 5:14, is a good example of a type used as a Person.

Rom 5:14 But death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those who had not sinned in the likeness of the transgression of Adam, who is the type of Him who was to come;

Adam a type of Him who was to come; But how was Adam a Type of Christ?

Apply the rules.

Anti-type (New Law) is translated as like figure (image) and type is translated as figure (mirror or shadow). An image is greater than a shadow. Just as we see our shadow in the sunlight our image is greater defined.

Adam was the first man to receive physical life. Christ was the first man to receive spiritual life. Christ was the first born. This means he was the first to overcome death and the first to be resurrected.

Adam was the first man to live; Christ was the first man to live eternally.

The later is greater than the first.

Also through Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive.

1Cor.15:22 For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive.

 

Heb 9:8 & 9, is a good example of a type used as a place. 

Heb 9:8 ¶  the Holy Spirit this signifying, that the way into the holy place hath not yet been made manifest, while the first tabernacle is yet standing; 9  which is a figure for the time present; according to which are offered both gifts and sacrifices that cannot, as touching the conscience, make the worshipper perfect,

Apply the rules.

The tabernacle was a physical place where man as a high priest enters with blood to have sin move forward for one year.

Under the New Law, after Christ death, our body is the temple, which after baptism the Holy Ghost dwells; Christ entered heaven as our high priest and once was his blood given to remove sin.

1Co 6:19  What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?

 

1Cor 10:4-6, is a good example of a type used as a thing.

1Cor 10:4  And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.

Which is the type? The rock, which is the antitype? Christ.

Hebrews 10:1 uses the word shadow to describe the difference between the Old and New Law.

Hebrews 10:1 For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually make the comers thereunto perfect.

This brings us to some interesting conclusions and provides an important key to Bible understanding.

Salvation is a very controversial subject between churches of different beliefs. Let’s try to use types and antitypes to clear up some of these disagreements.

 

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