Jesus and Joshua.

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Ben C. Smith
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Jesus and Joshua.

Post by Ben C. Smith » Sun Apr 23, 2017 10:57 am

I wanted to assemble some texts which may shed light on early Christian linguistic and typological connections between Jesus Christ and Joshua, Moses' successor. Much of this is derived from the essay by Robert A. Kraft, which has received attention on this forum before.

The English name Jesus actually comes from the Latin Iesus, which in turn derives from the Greek Ἰησοῦς, which is exactly how the LXX renders the name of Joshua. So Jesus = Joshua, namewise. In the quotes I will give, I will usually render the name Joshua as Jesus, just so that the modern ear can hear what the ancient ear heard (since I think we tend to file Joshua and Jesus away in two different categories sometimes).

The name Jesus/Joshua comes from the Hebrew Yehoshua, shortened to Yeshua. Yehoshua, a theophoric name, means something like "Yahweh saves" (or "Yahweh is salvation"). Philo seems aware of this etymology:

Philo, On the Change of Names 21.121-122: 121 Thus much we have thought fit to say on this subject. But, moreover, Moses also changes the name of Hosea into that of Jesus; displaying by his new name the distinctive qualities of his character; 122 for the name Hosea is interpreted, "what sort of a person is this?" but Jesus means "the salvation of the Lord" [Ἰησοῦς δὲ σωτηρία κυρίου], being the name of the most excellent possible character [ἕξεως ὄνομα τῆς ἀριστης]; for the habits are better with respect to those persons who are of such and such qualities from being influenced by them: as, for instance, music is better in a musician, physic in a physician, and each art of a distinctive quality in each artist, regarded both in its perpetuity, and in its power, and in its unerring perfection with regard to the objects of its speculation. For a habit is something everlasting, energising, and perfect; but a man of such and such a quality is mortal, the object of action, and imperfect. And what is imperishable is superior to what is mortal, the efficient cause is better than that which is the object of action; and what is perfect is preferable to what is imperfect.

The Jesus Hymn in Philippians 2 seems to utilize this etymology, since the "name above every name" ought to be Yahweh (the tetragrammaton), yet it comes out as Jesus:

Philippians 2.5-11: 5 Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, 6 who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant [μορφὴν δούλου], and being made in the likeness of men. 8 Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross [θανάτου δὲ σταυροῦ]. 9 For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Origen, Homilies on Joshua 1: God gave the name that is above every name to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. For this name that is above every name is Jesus. [Link: https://books.google.com/books?id=mx4QP ... 22&f=false.]

Interestingly, another epistle, one on the margins of the Pauline corpus, makes a similar claim about Jesus receiving his name:

Hebrews 1.1-4: 1 God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways, 2 in these last days has spoken to us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the world. 3 And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, 4 having become as much better than the angels, as He has inherited a more excellent name than they [ὅσῳ διαφορώτερον παρ᾽ αὐτοὺς κεκληρονόμηκεν ὄνομα].

Matthew, too, is aware of the meaning of the name Jesus:

Matthew 1.21: 21 "And she will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for it is He who will save His people from their sins."

As is Sirach:

Wisdom of Sirach 46.1-7: 1 Jesus [Ἰησοῦς] the son of Nave was valiant in the wars, and was the successor of Moses in prophecies, who according to his name was made great for the saving [ἐπὶ σωτηρίᾳ] of the elect of God, and taking vengeance of the enemies that rose up against them, that he might set Israel in their inheritance. 2 How great glory gat he, when he did lift up his hands, and stretched out his sword against the cities! 3 Who before him so stood to it? for the Lord himself brought his enemies unto him. 4 Did not the sun go back by his means? And was not one day as long as two? 5 He called upon the most high Lord, when the enemies pressed upon him on every side; and the great Lord heard him. 6 And with hailstones of mighty power he made the battle to fall violently upon the nations, and in the descent of Beth-horon he destroyed them that resisted, that the nations might know all their strength, because he fought in the sight of the Lord, and he followed the Mighty One. 7 In the time of Moses also he did a work of mercy, he and Caleb the son of Jephunne, in that they withstood the congregation, and withheld the people from sin, and appeased the wicked murmuring. 8 And of six hundred thousand people on foot, they two were preserved to bring them in to the heritage, even unto the land that floweth with milk and honey.

Sirach mentions in verse 4 the episode in which the sun stands still:

Joshua 10.12-14: 12 Then Joshua spoke to the Lord in the day when the Lord delivered up the Amorites before the sons of Israel, and he said in the sight of Israel, “O sun, stand still at Gibeon, / and O moon in the valley of Aijalon.” / 13 So the sun stood still, and the moon stopped, / until the nation avenged themselves of their enemies. Is it not written in the book of Jashar? And the sun stopped in the middle of the sky and did not hasten to go down for about a whole day. 14 There was no day like that before it or after it, when the Lord listened to the voice of a man; for the Lord fought for Israel.

The Sibylline Oracles appear to refer to this episode and assimilate both Jesus and Joshua somehow:

Sibylline Oracles 5.255-258: Then there shall come from the sky a certain / exalted man whose hands he spread out upon the fruitful tree, / The noblest of the Hebrews who caused the sun to stand still [Ἑβραίων ὁ ἄριστος, ὃς ἡέλιόν ποτε στῆσε] / When he cries with fair speech and pure lips.

This passage uses the same word here for "noblest" as Philo did while commending Joshua for his "most excellent" character.

It is interesting to me that the book of Joshua begins with the commission of Joshua (after Moses' death) and ends with Joshua's death; likewise, our extant gospel of Mark begins with the commission of Jesus (at his baptism) and ends with Jesus' death and resurrection.

The book of Deuteronomy promises the coming of what we have come to call "a prophet like Moses" in Moses' farewell speech:

Deuteronomy 18.15-22: 15 “The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your countrymen, you shall listen to him. 16 This is according to all that you asked of the Lord your God in Horeb on the day of the assembly, saying, ‘Let me not hear again the voice of the Lord my God, let me not see this great fire anymore, or I will die.’ 17 The Lord said to me, ‘They have spoken well. 18 I will raise up a prophet from among their countrymen like you, and I will put My words in his mouth, and he shall speak to them all that I command him. 19 It shall come about that whoever will not listen to My words which he shall speak in My name, I Myself will require it of him. 20 But the prophet who speaks a word presumptuously in My name which I have not commanded him to speak, or which he speaks in the name of other gods, that prophet shall die.’ 21 You may say in your heart, ‘How will we know the word which the Lord has not spoken?’ 22 When a prophet speaks in the name of the Lord, if the thing does not come about or come true, that is the thing which the Lord has not spoken. The prophet has spoken it presumptuously; you shall not be afraid of him.”

Was Joshua that prophet? Not according to the last passage in the book:

Deuteronomy 34.9-12: 9 Now Jesus the son of Nun was filled with the spirit of wisdom, for Moses had laid his hands on him; and the sons of Israel listened to him and did as the Lord had commanded Moses. 10 Since that time no prophet has risen in Israel like Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face, 11 for all the signs and wonders which the Lord sent him to perform in the land of Egypt against Pharaoh, all his servants, and all his land, 12 and for all the mighty power and for all the great terror which Moses performed in the sight of all Israel.

But pseudo-Philo may beg to differ:

Pseudo-Philo, Biblical Antiquities 20.2: 2 Then said God unto Jesus the son of Naue: Wherefore mournest thou, and wherefore hopest thou in vain, thinking that Moses shall yet live? Now therefore thou waitest to no purpose, for Moses is dead. Take the garments of his wisdom and put them on thee, and gird thy loins with the girdle of his knowledge, and thou shalt be changed and become another man. Did I not speak for thee unto Moses my servant, saying: "He shall lead my people after thee, and into his hand will I deliver the kings of the Amorites?"

Pseudo-Philo, Biblical Antiquities 25.6: 6 And then all Israel gathered together to bury [Jesus], and they lamented him with a great lamentation, and thus said they in their lamentation: Weep ye for the wing of this swift eagle, for he hath flown away from us. And weep ye for the strength of this lion's whelp, for he is hidden from us. Who now will go and report unto Moses the righteous, that we have had forty years a leader like unto him? And they fulfilled their mourning and buried him with their own hands in the mount Effraim and returned every man unto his tent. And after the death of Jesus the land of Israel was at rest.

The book of Acts appears to say that Jesus, son of God, is the "prophet like Moses" who was promised:

Acts 3.17-26: 17 “And now, brethren, I know that you acted in ignorance, just as your rulers did also. 18 But the things which God announced beforehand by the mouth of all the prophets, that His Christ would suffer, He has thus fulfilled. 19 Therefore repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord; 20 and that He may send Jesus, the Christ appointed for you, 21 whom heaven must receive until the period of restoration of all things about which God spoke by the mouth of His holy prophets from ancient time. 22 Moses said, ‘The Lord God will raise up for you a prophet like me from your brethren; to Him you shall give heed to everything He says to you. 23 And it will be that every soul that does not heed that prophet shall be utterly destroyed from among the people.’ 24 And likewise, all the prophets who have spoken, from Samuel and his successors onward, also announced these days. 25 It is you who are the sons of the prophets and of the covenant which God made with your fathers, saying to Abraham, ‘And in your seed all the families of the earth shall be blessed.’ 26 For you first, God raised up His Servant and sent Him to bless you by turning every one of you from your wicked ways.”

Similarly, the book of Exodus promises an angel/messenger who will deliver Israel's enemies into their hands:

Exodus 23.20-23: 20 "Behold, I am going to send an/my angel [ שֹׁלֵ֤חַ מַלְאָךְ, ἀποστέλλω τὸν ἄγγελόν μου] before you to guard you along the way, and to bring you into the place which I have prepared. 21 Be on your guard before him and obey his voice; do not be rebellious toward him, for he will not pardon your transgression, since My name is in him [ שְׁמִ֖י בְּקִרְבּֽוֹ, ὄνομά μού ἐστιν ἐπ᾽ αὐτῷ]." 22 But if you truly obey his voice and do all that I say, then I will be an enemy to your enemies and an adversary to your adversaries. 23 For My angel will go before you and bring you in to the land of the Amorites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Canaanites, the Hivites and the Jebusites; and I will completely destroy them.

"My name is in him." This appears to be another recognition of the etymology of the name Jesus/Yehoshua ("Yahweh saves").

Justin Martyr, in a series of passages about Joshua, does not fail to connect these verses, as well as many others, with Jesus the son of God:

Justin Martyr, Dialogue With Trypho 75.1-2: 1 "Moreover, in the book of Exodus we have also perceived that the name of God Himself which, He says, was not revealed to Abraham or to Jacob, was Jesus, and was declared mysteriously through Moses. Thus it is written: 'And the Lord spake to Moses, Say to this people, Behold, I send My angel before thy face, to keep thee in the way, to bring thee into the land which I have prepared for thee. Give heed to Him, and obey Him; do not disobey Him. For He will not draw back from you; for My name is in Him.' 2 Now understand that He who led your fathers into the land is called by this name Jesus, and first called Auses (Oshea). For if you shall understand this, you shall likewise perceive that the name of Him who said to Moses, 'for My name is in Him,' was Jesus. For, indeed, He was also called Israel, and Jacob's name was changed to this also.

Justin Martyr, Dialogue With Trypho 89.1-2: 1 Then Trypho remarked, "Be assured that all our nation waits for Christ; and we admit that all the Scriptures which you have quoted refer to Him. Moreover, I do also admit that the name of Jesus, by which the the son of Nave (Nun) was called, has inclined me very strongly to adopt this view. 2 But whether Christ should be so shamefully crucified, this we are in doubt about. For whosoever is crucified is said in the law to be accursed, so that I am exceedingly incredulous on this point. It is quite clear, indeed, that the Scriptures announce that Christ had to suffer; but we wish to learn if you can prove it to us whether it was by the suffering cursed in the law."

Justin Martyr, Dialogue With Trypho 106.1-4: 1 "The remainder of the Psalm makes it manifest that He knew His Father would grant to Him all things which He asked, and would raise Him from the dead; and that He urged all who fear God to praise Him because He had compassion on all races of believing men, through the mystery of Him who was crucified; and that He stood in the midst of His brethren the apostles (who repented of their flight from Him when He was crucified, after He rose from the dead, and after they were persuaded by Himself that, before His passion He had mentioned to them that He must suffer these things, and that they were announced beforehand by the prophets), and when living with them sang praises to God, as is made evident in the memoirs of the apostles. 2 The words are the following: 'I will declare Thy name to my brethren; in the midst of the Church will I praise Thee. Ye that fear the Lord, praise Him; all ye, the seed of Jacob, glorify Him. Let all the seed of Israel fear Him.' 3 And when it is said that He changed the name of one of the apostles to Peter; and when it is written in the memoirs of Him that this so happened, as well as that He changed the names of other two brothers, the sons of Zebedee, to Boanerges, which means sons of thunder; this was an announcement of the fact that it was He by whom Jacob was called Israel, and Oshea called Jesus [Ἰησοῦς], under whose name the people who survived of those that came from Egypt were conducted into the land promised to the patriarchs. 4 And that He should arise like a star from the seed of Abraham, Moses showed before hand when he thus said, 'A star shall arise from Jacob, and a leader from Israel;' and another Scripture says, 'Behold a man; the East is His name [ἀνατολὴ ὄνομα αὐτῷ].' Accordingly, when a star rose in heaven at the time of His birth, as is recorded in the memoirs of His apostles, the Magi from Arabia, recognising the sign by this, came and worshipped Him.

Justin Martyr, Dialogue With Trypho 113.1-4: 1 "What I mean is this. Jesus, as I have now frequently remarked, who was called Oshea, when he was sent to spy out the land of Canaan, was named by Moses Jesus. Why he did this you neither ask, nor are at a loss about it, nor make strict inquiries. Therefore Christ has escaped your notice; and though you read, you understand not; and even now, though you hear that Jesus is our Christ, you consider not that the name was bestowed on Him not purposelessly nor by chance. 2 But you make a theological discussion as to why one rho was added to Abraham's first name; and as to why one 'p' was added to Sarah's name, you use similar high-sounding disputations. But why do you not similarly investigate the reason why the name of Oshea the son of Nave (Nun), which his father gave him, was changed to Jesus? 3 But since not only was his name altered, but he was also appointed successor to Moses, being the only one of his contemporaries who came out from Egypt, he led the surviving people into the Holy Land; and as he, not Moses, led the people into the Holy Land, and as he distributed it by lot to those who entered along with him, so also Jesus the Christ will turn again the dispersion of the people, and will distribute the good land to each one, though not in the same manner. 4 For the former gave them a temporary inheritance, seeing he was neither Christ who is God, nor the Son of God; but the latter, after the holy resurrection, shall give us the eternal possession. The former, after he had been named Jesus, and after he had received strength from His Spirit, caused the sun to stand still. For I have proved that it was Jesus who appeared to and conversed with Moses, and Abraham, and all the other patriarchs without exception, ministering to the will of the Father; who also, I say, came to be born man by the Virgin Mary, and I lives for ever."

Justin Martyr, Dialogue With Trypho 120.3: 3 "He speaks therefore in the passage relating to Judah: 'A prince shall not fail from Judah, nor a ruler from his thighs, till that which is laid up for him come; and He shall be the expectation of the nations.' And it is plain that this was spoken not of Judah, but of Christ. For all we out of all nations do expect not Judah, but Jesus, who led your fathers out of Egypt. For the prophecy referred even to the advent of Christ: 'Till He come for whom this is laid up, and He shall be the expectation of nations.'"

But in that middle passage Justin also connects Jesus, son of God, with another Jesus/Joshua from the Hebrew scriptures, to wit, the one from the book of Zechariah:

Zechariah 3.1-10: 1 Then he showed me Jesus the high priest standing before the angel of the Lord, and Satan standing at his right hand to accuse him. 2 The Lord said to Satan, “The Lord rebuke you, Satan! Indeed, the Lord who has chosen Jerusalem rebuke you! Is this not a brand plucked from the fire?” 3 Now Jesus was clothed with filthy garments and standing before the angel. 4 He spoke and said to those who were standing before him, saying, “Remove the filthy garments from him.” Again he said to him, “See, I have taken your iniquity away from you and will clothe you with festal robes.” 5 Then I said, “Let them put a clean turban on his head.” So they put a clean turban on his head and clothed him with garments, while the angel of the Lord was standing by. 6 And the angel of the Lord admonished Jesus, saying, 7 “Thus says the Lord of hosts, ‘If you will walk in My ways and if you will perform My service, then you will also govern My house and also have charge of My courts, and I will grant you free access among these who are standing here. 8 Now listen, Jesus the high priest, you and your friends who are sitting in front of you—indeed they are men who are a symbol, for behold, I am going to bring in My servant the Branch [Ἀνατολήν]. 9 For behold, the stone that I have set before Joshua; on one stone are seven eyes. Behold, I will engrave an inscription on it,’ declares the Lord of hosts, ‘and I will remove the iniquity of that land in one day. 10 ‘In that day,’ declares the Lord of hosts, ‘every one of you will invite his neighbor to sit under his vine and under his fig tree.’”

Zechariah 6.11-15: 11 Take silver and gold, make an ornate crown and set it on the head of Jesus the son of Jehozadak, the high priest. 12 Then say to him, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts, “Behold, a man whose name is Branch [Ανατολὴ], for He will branch out from where He is; and He will build the temple of the Lord. 13 Yes, it is He who will build the temple of the Lord, and He who will bear the honor and sit and rule on His throne. Thus, He will be a priest on His throne, and the counsel of peace will be between the two offices.”’ 14 Now the crown will become a reminder in the temple of the Lord to Helem, Tobijah, Jedaiah and Hen the son of Zephaniah. 15 Those who are far off will come and build the temple of the Lord.” Then you will know that the Lord of hosts has sent me to you. And it will take place if you completely obey the Lord your God.

In that fifth passage from Justin Martyr, Jesus is noted as having been the one who led Israel out of Egypt. It would seem more natural to say that Moses led Israel out, but to say that Jesus/Joshua did it may parallel a particularly thorny reading in the epistle of Jude:

Jude [1.]5-6: 5 Now I desire to remind you, though you know all things once for all, that Jesus / the Lord / God / God Christ, after saving a people out of the land of Egypt, a second time destroyed those who did not believe. 6 And angels who did not keep their own domain, but abandoned their proper abode, He has kept in eternal bonds under darkness for the judgment of the great day.

LaParola (Jude [1.]5): Ὑπομνῆσαι δὲ ὑμᾶς βούλομαι, εἰδότας ὑμᾶς ἅπαξ πάντα, ὅτι Ἰησοῦς λαὸν ἐκ γῆς Αἰγύπτου σώσας τὸ δεύτερον τοὺς μὴ πιστεύσαντας ἀπώλεσεν.
δὲ] p72 p78 ‭א A B K L 049 056 0142 0251 5 18 33 35 61 81 88 181 254 307 326 431 436 442 468 621 623 630 808 909 915 1067 1409 1505 1611 1678 1836 1837 1845 1875 2200 2344 2374 2805 Byz l596 ς WH
οὖν] C Ψ 6 93 323 665 1241 1243 1501 1739 2298 pc Lucifer
omit] 1881 pc copbo(mss)

εἰδότας ὑμᾶς] ‭א B K L 049 056 (0142 εἰδότας τοῦτο ὑμᾶς) 18 35 181 254 326 431 468 909 1836 1837 1875 2374 Byz ς (NA [ὑμᾶς]) NR
εἰδότας] p72 A C Ψ 0251 5 6 (33* ἰδόντας) 33c 61 81 88 93 307 323 436 442 453 621 623 630 665 808 915 1845 (1241 εἰδωτας) 1067 1243 1409 1501 1505 1611 1678 1739 1881 2200 2344 2805 al l596 it vg WH
εἰδότας ἡμᾶς] 2298

ἅπαξ πάντα, ὅτι Ἰησοῦς] A B 33 81 (1739mg πάντα ἅπαξ γὰρ Ἰησοῦς) 2344 pc itdem itdiv vg (eth) Jerome ECM
ἅπαξ πάντα, ὅτι κύριος] Ephraem WH NR CEI ND Riv TILC Nv (NM)
ἅπαξ πάντα, ὅτι ὁ θεὸς] C2 (5 623mg ἅπαξ τοῦτο, ὅτι) 623text 2805 vgms (slav)
ἅπαξ πάντα, ὅτι θεὸς Χριστὸς] (p72* πάντας) p72(c)
πάντα ὅτι ὁ κύριος ἅπαξ] (‭א Ψ omit ὁ) C* 307 326 431 436 453 630 808 1505 1611 2138 2200 2412 2495 syrh (NA [ὁ])
πάντα ὅτι ὁ θεὸς ἅπαξ] 442 621 1243 1845 1846 2492 l596 itp vgmss syrph arm geo Clementvid (Lucifer omit ἅπαξ)
πάντα, ὅτι Ἰησοῦς ἅπαξ] (88 915 ὁ Ἰησοῦς) 6 93 322 323 665 1241 1501 1739text 1881 2298 (itar itc (copsa copbo) Origenaccording to 1739 Cyril omit ἅπαξ)
ἅπαξ τοῦτο, ὅτι ὁ κύριος] (K 056 l593 τοῦτο ἅπαξ) L 049 (0142 τοῦτο ὑμᾶς) 18 35 61 104 181 254 307 326 330 431 436 (468 909 1875 ὁ) 451 453 629 808 945 1067 1175 1292 (1409 omit τοῦτο) 1678 (1735 l591 ὅτι Χριστὸς Ἰησοῦς) 1836 1837 1844 1877 2127 2374 Byz Lect Ps-Oecumenius Theophylact ς Dio

Peter Kirby explores this passage here: viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1478&p=33858#p33858.

Barnabas seems to flatly take away what ought to belong to Jesus/Joshua and give it to Jesus Christ:

Barnabas 12.8-10: 8 What again saith Moses unto Jesus the son of Nun, when he giveth him this name, as being a prophet, that all the people might give ear to him alone, because the Father revealeth all things concerning His Son Jesus? 9 Moses therefore saith to Jesus the son of Nun, giving him this name, when he sent him as a spy on the land; Take a book in thy hands, and write what the Lord saith, how the Son of God shall cut up by the roots all the house of Amalek in the last days. 10 Behold again it is Jesus, not a son of man, but the Son of God, and He was revealed in the flesh in a figure. Since then men will say that Christ is the son of David, David himself prophesieth being afraid and understanding the error of sinners; The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou on My right hand until I set thine enemies for a footstool under Thy feet.

The epistle to the Hebrews, likewise, sort of robs Joshua to pay Jesus:

Hebrews 4.8-9: 8 For if Jesus had given them rest, He would not have spoken of another day after that. 9 So there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God.

Here is Clement:

Clement of Alexandria, The Instructor 1.7: A prophet, says he, like Me shall God raise up to you of your brethren, pointing out Jesus the Son of God, by an allusion to Jesus the son of Nun; for the name of Jesus predicted in the law was a shadow of Christ.

Here is Origen:

Origen, Commentary on John 6.26: And Jesus, who succeeded Moses, was a type of Jesus Christ, who succeeds the dispensation through the law, and replaces it by the preaching of the Gospel. And even if those Paul speaks of were baptized in the cloud and in the sea, there is something harsh and salt in their baptism. They are still in fear of their enemies, and crying to the Lord and to Moses, saying, Because there were no graves in Egypt, have you brought us forth to slay us in the wilderness? Why have you dealt thus with us, to bring us forth out of Egypt? But the baptism to Jesus, which takes place in quite sweet and drinkable water, is in many ways superior to that earlier one, religion having by this time grown clearer and assuming a becoming order. For the ark of the covenant of the Lord our God is carried in procession by the priests and levites, the people following the ministers of God, it, also, accepting the law of holiness. For Jesus says to the people, Sanctify yourselves against tomorrow; the Lord will do wonders among you. And he commands the priests to go before the people with the ark of the covenant, wherein is plainly showed forth the mystery of the Father's economy about the Son, which is highly exalted by Him who gave the Son this office; That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven and things on earth and things under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. This is pointed out by what we find in the book called Jesus, In that day I will begin to exalt you before the children of Israel. And we hear our Lord Jesus saying to the children of Israel, Come hither and hear the words of the Lord your God. Hereby you shall know that the living God is in (among) you; for when we are baptized to Jesus, we know that the living God is in us. And, in the former case, they kept the passover in Egypt, and then began their journey, but with Jesus, after crossing Jordan on the tenth day of the first month they pitched their camp in Galgala; for a sheep had to be procured before invitations could be issued to the banquet after Jesus's baptism. Then the children of Israel, since the children of those who came out of Egypt had not received circumcision, were circumcised by Jesus with a very sharp stone; the Lord declares that He takes away the reproach of Egypt on the day of Jesus's baptism, when Jesus purified the children of Israel. For it is written: And the Lord said to Jesus, the son of Nun, This day have I taken away the reproach of Egypt from off you. Then the children of Israel kept the passover on the fourteenth day of the month, with much greater gladness than in Egypt, for they ate unleavened bread of the grain of the holy land, and fresh food better than manna. For when they received the land of promise God did not entertain them with scantier food, nor when such a one as Jesus was their leader do they get inferior bread. This will be plain to him who thinks of the true holy land and of the Jerusalem above. Hence it is written in this same Gospel: Your fathers ate bread in the wilderness, and are dead; he that eats of this bread shall live for ever. For the manna, though it was given by God, yet was bread of travel, bread supplied to those still under discipline, well fitted for those who were under tutors and governors. And the new bread Jesus managed to get from grain they cut in the country, in the land of promise, others having laboured and his disciples reaping—that was bread more full of life, distributed as it was to those who, for their perfection, were able to receive the inheritance of their fathers. Hence, he who is still under discipline to that bread may receive death as far as it is concerned, but he who has attained to the bread that follows that, eating it, shall live for ever. All this has been added, not, I conceive, without appropriateness, to our study of the baptism at the Jordan, administered by John at Bethabara.

Finally, there are some real outliers hiding amongst our ancient materials:

Jerome, commentary on Habakkuk, volume 2: The sixth column [of Origen's Hexapla], publishing the sacrament [the secret] most clearly, thus translates from the Hebrew: You went forth so as to save Your people through Jesus Your Christ, which in the Greek is rendered, .... / Sexta editio prodens manifestissime sacramentum, ita vertit ex Hebraeo: Egressus es, ut salvares populum tuum per Iesum Christum tuum, quod Graece dicitur, ἐξῆλθες τοῦ σῶσαι τὸν λαόν σου διὰ Ἰησοῦν τὸν Χριστόν σου. [Refer also to page 1010 of Frederick Field's second volume on the Hexapla.]

Habakkuk 3.11-13: 11 Sun and moon stood in their places; they went away at the light of Your arrows, at the radiance of Your gleaming spear. 12 In indignation You marched through the earth; in anger You trampled the nations.13 You went forth for the salvation of Your people [εἰς σωτηρίαν λαοῦ σου], for the salvation of Your anointed ones [τοῦ σῶσαι τοὺς χριστούς σου; some manuscripts have the singular instead]. You struck the head of the house of the evil to lay him open from thigh to neck.

4 Ezra 7.26-34: 26 For behold, the time will come, when the signs which I have foretold to you will come to pass, that the city which now is not seen shall appear, and the land which now is hidden shall be disclosed. 27 And every one who has been delivered from the evils that I have foretold shall see my wonders. 28 For my son the Messiah [Filius meus Iesus, Vulgate] shall be revealed with those who are with him, and those who remain shall rejoice four hundred years. 29 And after these years my son the Messiah [Filius meus Christus, Vulgate] shall die, and all who draw human breath. 30 And the world shall be turned back to primeval silence for seven days, as it was at the first beginnings; so that no one shall be left. 31 And after seven days the world, which is not yet awake, shall be roused, and that which is corruptible shall perish. 32 And the earth shall give up those who are asleep in it, and the dust those who dwell silently in it; and the chambers shall give up the souls which have been committed to them. 33 And the Most High shall be revealed upon the seat of judgment, and compassion shall pass away, and patience shall be withdrawn; 34 but only judgment shall remain, truth shall stand, and faithfulness shall grow strong.

PGM IV.3007-3086 (century III), on page 96 of Dieter Betz, Greek Magical Papyri: I conjure you by the God of the Hebrews, Jesus.

Asatir (Samaritan Book of the Secrets of Moses) 10.45: "A star will arise from Jacob;" this refers to Phineas. "And a scepter shall come from Israel;" this refers to Joshua.

That last passage may be found here: https://archive.org/stream/MN40245ucmf_ ... 5/mode/2up, making both Phinehas and Joshua/Jesus the targets of a famous messianic prediction.

I have no specific argument to mount regarding these materials yet, though I do tend to think that there was some messianic Joshua speculation going on before Jesus ever popped onto the scene. The main purpose here is to assemble the materials themselves; so, if you have additional texts of interest, by all means share.

Ben.

ETA 1: Josephus describes "the Egyptian" as follows:

Antiquities 20.8.6 §167-172: 167 These works that were done by the thieves filled the city with all sorts of impiety. And now these enchanters and deceitful men persuaded the multitude to follow them into the wilderness, 168 and pretended that they would exhibit manifest wonders and signs that should be performed by the providence of God. And many that were prevailed on by them suffered the punishments of their folly; for Felix brought them back, and then punished them. 169 Moreover, there came out of Egypt at about this time to Jerusalem one that said that he was a prophet, and he advised the multitude of the common people to go along with him to the Mount of Olives, as it was called, which lay over against the city, and at the distance of five stades. 170 He said further that he would show them from hence how at his command the walls of Jerusalem would fall down, and he promised them that he would procure them an entrance into the city through those walls after they had fallen down. 171 Now when Felix was informed of these things he ordered his soldiers to take their weapons, and he came against them with a great number of horsemen and footmen from Jerusalem, and attacked the Egyptian and the people that were with him. He also slew four hundred of them, and took two hundred alive. 172 But the Egyptian himself escaped out of the fight, but did not appear any more. And again the thieves stirred up the people to make war with the Romans, and said they ought not to obey them at all; and when any persons would not comply with them, they set fire to their villages and plundered them.

Notice that the Egyptian claimed to be a prophet ("a prophet like Moses"??), and he promised to make the walls of Jerusalem fall. One is reminded that the biblical Joshua made the walls of Jericho fall. And this fellow was not the only one, according to Josephus, who was leading followers out into the wilderness in order to show them signs and wonders. Following a Jesuine script in the name of liberation seems perhaps to have been "a thing" in century I.

ETA 2: John mentions 4QTestimonia/4Q175, so here is the transcription of it from page 357 of The Dead Sea Scrolls Study Edition, by Florentino García Martínez & Eibert Tigchelaar (slightly formatted):

1 And **** spoke to Moses saying: [Deuteronomy 5.28-29] «You have heard the sound of the words of 2 this people, what they said to you: all they have said is right. 3 If (only) it were given (that) they had /this/ heart to fear me and keep all 4 my precepts all the days, so that it might go well with them and their sons for ever!» 5 [Deuteronomy 18.18-19] «I would raise up for them a prophet from among their brothers, like you, and place my words 6 in his mouth, and he would tell them all that I command him. And it will happen that /the/ man 7 who does not listen to my words which the prophet will speak in my name, I 8 shall require a reckoning from him.» .... 9 And he uttered his poem and said: [Numbers 24.15-17] «Oracle of Balaam, son of Beor, and oracle of the man 10 of penetrating eye, oracle of him who listens to the words of God and knows the knowledge of the Most High, who 11 sees the vision of Shaddai, lying down and with an open eye. I see him, but not now, 12 I espy him, but not close up. A star has departed from Jacob, and a sceptre /has arisen/ from Israel. He shall crush 13 the temples of Moab, and cut to pieces all the sons of Sheth.» .... 14 And about Levi he says: [Deuteronomy 33.8-11] «Give to Levi your Thummim and your Urim, to your pious man, whom 15 I tested at Massah, and with whom I quarrelled about the waters of Meribah, /he who/ said to his father {not} 16 {...} and to his mother ‘I have not known you’, and did not acknowledge his brothers, and his sons he did not 17 want to know. For he observed your word and kept your covenant. /They have made/ your judgments /shine/ for Jacob, 18 your law for Israel, they have placed incense in your nose and a whole offering upon your altar. 19 Bless, ****, his courage and accept with pleasure the work of his hand! Crush /the loins/ of his adversaries, and those who hate him, 20 may they not rise!» .... 21 .... At the moment when Joshua finished praising and giving thanks with his psalms, 22 he said [Joshua 6.26] «Cursed be the man who rebuilds this city! Upon his firstborn 33 will he found it, and upon his youngest son will he erect its gates!» And now an accursed /man/, one of Belial, 24 will arise to be a [fo]wler’s tr[ap] for his people and ruin for all his neighbours. And 25 [...] will arise [to b]e the two instruments of violence. And they will rebuild 26 [this city and ere]ct for it a rampart and towers, to make it into a fortress of wickedness 27 [in the country and a great evil] in Israel, and a horror in Ephraim and Judah. 28 [... And they will com]mit a profanation in the land and a great blasphemy among the sons of 29 [Jacob. And they will shed blo]od like water upon the ramparts of the daughter of Zion and in the precincts of 30 .... {in} Jerusalem.

There may be four different messiah figures in play here: a "Prophet like Moses," a Davidic Royal Messiah, a Levite Priestly Messiah, and an Ephraimite Joshua Messiah (or Messiah ben Joseph).

ETA 3: Could Joshua being of the tribe of Ephraim (son of Joseph) have dovetailed with Jesus being a Messiah figure, since there was also a Messiah expected by some to come from the line of Joseph?

Numbers 13.1-16: 1 Then the Lord spoke to Moses saying, 2 “Send out for yourself men so that they may spy out the land of Canaan, which I am going to give to the sons of Israel; you shall send a man from each of their fathers’ tribes, every one a leader among them.” 3 So Moses sent them from the wilderness of Paran at the [a]command of the Lord, all of them men who were heads of the sons of Israel. 4 These then were their names: from the tribe of Reuben, Shammua the son of Zaccur; 5 from the tribe of Simeon, Shaphat the son of Hori; 6 from the tribe of Judah, Caleb the son of Jephunneh; 7 from the tribe of Issachar, Igal the son of Joseph; 8 from the tribe of Ephraim, Hoshea the son of Nun; 9 from the tribe of Benjamin, Palti the son of Raphu; 10 from the tribe of Zebulun, Gaddiel the son of Sodi; 11 from the tribe of Joseph, from the tribe of Manasseh, Gaddi the son of Susi; 12 from the tribe of Dan, Ammiel the son of Gemalli; 13 from the tribe of Asher, Sethur the son of Michael; 14 from the tribe of Naphtali, Nahbi the son of Vophsi; 15 from the tribe of Gad, Geuel the son of Machi. 16 These are the names of the men whom Moses sent to spy out the land; but Moses called Hoshea the son of Nun, Joshua.

ETA 4: Two more relevant passages from Philo, the first concerning "the prophet like Moses," the second concerning Joshua, Moses' successor:

Philo, The Special Laws 1.64-65: 64 And since there is implanted in all men a desire of the knowledge of future events, and as, on account of this desire, they have recourse to sacrifices and to other species of divination, as if by these means they would be able to search out and discover the truth (but these things are, in reality, full of indistinctness and uncertainty, and are continually being convicted by themselves). He, with great energy, forbids his disciples to apply themselves to such sources of knowledge; and he says, that if they are truly pious they shall not be deprived of a proper knowledge of the future; 65 but that some other Prophet will appear to them on a sudden, inspired like himself, who will preach and prophesy among them, saying nothing of his own (for he who is truly possessed and inspired, even when he speaks, is unable to comprehend what he is himself saying), but that all the words that he should utter would proceed from him as if another was prompting him; for the prophets are interpreters of God, who is only using their voices as instruments, in order to explain what he chooses. Having now then said this, and other things like this, concerning the proper idea to be entertained of the one real, and true, and living God; he proceeds to express in what manner one ought to pay him the honors that are his Due.

Philo, Questions and Answers on Exodus 2.43: 43 Why [in Exodus 24.13] does Moses, who has been summoned alone, go up not alone but with Joshua? The two are potentially one, since no one would say that those who are of like mind and like sentiments with one another are the same single (person) except in respect of another species. For Joshua is to be interpreted as "salvation." But is being saved by God more appropriate to anyone else than the inspired soul, in which prophecy resounds, since even in (Moses') lifetime he was over the rulers and at (Moses') death he was his successor? Rightly, therefore, does he go up as an assurance of two most necessary things: one, of the election of the contemplative race, and the other, that the Law should be considered not as an invention of the human mind but as a divine command and divine words. But perhaps, according to the unspoken meaning of what is said, Joshua too was openly summoned (to go) up and was not thought worthy of being called earlier to go up because (God) deemed the prophet worthy of this honor and great prerogative.

On the one hand, the future "prophet like Moses" is inspired like Moses; on the other, Moses' actual successor, Joshua, is also inspired and of the same mind as Moses.

ETA 5: A recent thought of mine:

Judges 2.1-5: 1 Now the angel of Yahweh came up from Gilgal to Bochim. And he said, "I brought you up out of Egypt and led you into the land which I have sworn to your fathers; and I said, 'I will never break My covenant with you, 2 and as for you, you shall make no covenant with the inhabitants of this land; you shall tear down their altars.' But you have not obeyed Me; what is this you have done? 3 Therefore I also said, 'I will not drive them out before you; but they will become as thorns in your sides and their gods will be a snare to you.'" 4 When the angel of Yahweh spoke these words to all the sons of Israel, the people lifted up their voices and wept. 5 So they named that place Bochim; and there they sacrificed to Yahweh.

Judges 2.6-10: 6 When Joshua had dismissed the people, the sons of Israel went each to his inheritance to possess the land. 7 The people served the Lord all the days of Joshua, and all the days of the elders who survived Joshua, who had seen all the great work of Yahweh which He had done for Israel. 8 Then Joshua the son of Nun, the servant of the Lord, died at the age of one hundred and ten. 9 And they buried him in the territory of his inheritance in Timnath-heres, in the hill country of Ephraim, north of Mount Gaash. 10 All that generation also were gathered to their fathers; and there arose another generation after them who did not know Yahweh, nor yet the work which He had done for Israel.

The transition between these two episodes is abrupt... unless Joshua is the angel of Yahweh, in which case the angel of Yahweh comes up from Gilgal to Bochim and rebukes the people of Israel, the people respond with tears of contrition, and then Joshua (= the angel of Yahweh??) dismisses the people and they go to their own lands.

However, the LXX inserts a "thus says the Lord" at the beginning of the angel's speech, which would be more consonant with a messenger/prophet speaking. So maybe that phrase dropped out for some reason. On the other hand, it may be easier to imagine the phrase being added than it being subtracted.

It is interesting that the angel/messenger of Yahweh comes up from Gilgal, site of the twelve stones set up as a remembrance after crossing the Jordan under Joshua in Joshua 4.20. And it is interesting that the first thing the angel/messenger says is, "I brought you up out of Egypt" (compare Justin Martyr, Dialogue With Trypho 120.3, and some variants of Jude [1.]5, both given above).

ETA 6: There are two places in the New Testament in which the name Ἰησοῦς has to mean the Old Testament hero:

Acts 7.45: 45 "And having received it in their turn, our fathers brought it in with Joshua/Jesus upon dispossessing the nations whom God drove out before our fathers, until the time of David."

Hebrews 4.8: 8 For if Joshua/Jesus had given them rest, He would not have spoken of another day after that.

Manuscripts of the NT generally use the nomen sacrum ΙΣ (with a superscript line) for Jesus, and they also use that same nomen for the hero Joshua. Here, for example, is Sinaiticus for Hebrews 4.8:

Hebrews 4.8 Sinaiticus.jpg
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I have checked the main uncial manuscripts both for Hebrews 4.8 (א, A, B) and for Acts 7.45 (א, A, B, D), and only Bezae (in the latter verse) fails to use the nomen sacrum for Joshua. In the other manuscripts, the name may as well be that of Jesus.
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Re: Jesus and Joshua.

Post by Ben C. Smith » Sun Apr 23, 2017 11:08 am

This is the full magical spell from which that snippet above, "I conjure you by the God of the Hebrews, Jesus," was taken (pages 96-97 of Betz):
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Re: Jesus and Joshua.

Post by Peter Kirby » Sun Apr 23, 2017 11:12 am

Ben C. Smith wrote:I have no specific argument to mount regarding these materials yet, though I do tend to think that there was some messianic Joshua speculation going on before Jesus ever popped onto the scene. The main purpose here is to assemble the materials themselves; so, if you have additional texts of interest, by all means share.
Incidentally (and hopefully without derailing this great thread--fantastic job on the OP), this helps a great deal to explain any possible pre-Pauline messianic Joshua speculators; like, maybe, James in Jerusalem. Even better, it can help explain why there might have been a break in their theological (and "christological") outlooks, notwithstanding any common belief in the "Messiah Joshua" that Paul co-opted for his novel mission to the Gentiles. A "Messiah Joshua" belief (= expectation for an imminent arrival of the Messiah based on scripture and possibly revelation, with details like the name specified in true end-of-the-world-is-nigh style) can still involve a fairly conservative Jewish sect conforming to the circumcision and the law.

It's almost like this whole thing is starting to make some sense. :cheers:
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Re: Jesus and Joshua.

Post by Ben C. Smith » Sun Apr 23, 2017 12:22 pm

Peter Kirby wrote:
Ben C. Smith wrote:I have no specific argument to mount regarding these materials yet, though I do tend to think that there was some messianic Joshua speculation going on before Jesus ever popped onto the scene. The main purpose here is to assemble the materials themselves; so, if you have additional texts of interest, by all means share.
Incidentally (and hopefully without derailing this great thread--fantastic job on the OP), this helps a great deal to explain any possible pre-Pauline messianic Joshua speculators; like, maybe, James in Jerusalem.
I have had thoughts leaning in that very direction, I must admit.
It's almost like this whole thing is starting to make some sense. :cheers:
You say that now. :D But there are still sooooo many details to hammer out.
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Re: Jesus and Joshua.

Post by Peter Kirby » Sun Apr 23, 2017 12:30 pm

Ben C. Smith wrote:
Peter Kirby wrote:It's almost like this whole thing is starting to make some sense. :cheers:
You say that now. :D But there are still sooooo many details to hammer out.
Let me get a head start!

:banghead:
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Re: Jesus and Joshua.

Post by Ben C. Smith » Sun Apr 23, 2017 12:36 pm

Just added a text from Josephus that I had forgotten about while composing the OP.
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Re: Jesus and Joshua.

Post by Secret Alias » Sun Apr 23, 2017 12:44 pm

Asatir (Samaritan Book of the Secrets of Moses) 10.45: "A star will arise from Jacob;" this refers to Phineas. "And a scepter shall come from Israel;" this refers to Jesus.

Is this Gaster's translation? Odd to use the form 'Jesus' when the Asatir is written in Aramaic. Gaster wasn't familiar with Samaritan Aramaic. I am sure the text reads 'Joshua' here. I will dig up my teacher's translation of this section from my private correspondences.
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Re: Jesus and Joshua.

Post by Ben C. Smith » Sun Apr 23, 2017 12:55 pm

Secret Alias wrote:Asatir (Samaritan Book of the Secrets of Moses) 10.45: "A star will arise from Jacob;" this refers to Phineas. "And a scepter shall come from Israel;" this refers to Jesus.

Is this Gaster's translation? Odd to use the form 'Jesus' when the Asatir is written in Aramaic.
It is Gaster's translation, yes, but I said in the OP that I was changing "Joshua" to "Jesus" in the texts in order to preserve the feel of things; however, I overshot in this case by mistake, and I have made the change in the text. Thanks.
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Re: Jesus and Joshua.

Post by Peter Kirby » Sun Apr 23, 2017 12:57 pm

Ben C. Smith wrote:I said in the OP that I was changing "Joshua" to "Jesus" in the texts in order to preserve the feel of things
I think this was a good move -- it's accurate to the Greek (not more accurate, but equally accurate), and it shakes up our preconceptions in a way making it all "Joshua" in this post wouldn't (because it's traditionally rendered Joshua in most of these passages, creating a difference where there isn't).
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Re: Jesus and Joshua.

Post by Secret Alias » Sun Apr 23, 2017 1:10 pm

It is already at my blog:

http://stephanhuller.blogspot.com/2009/ ... on-by.html

Is this the right chapter? It seems I only reproduced two pages from the monograph. The rest is in my garage somewhere in old (ignored) boxes. But you begin to see at least that the Joshua interest is more extensive than what Kraft cites.
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