Lately, while looking at Matthew 28, I have been looking thinking about the parallels to the end of the book of Matthew, and the end of the Jews time in the wilderness and entrance into the promised land. There are some interesting points of contrast and comparison.
The people of Israel went into the nation of Israel with the expectation that they would experience God's presence as they entered the promised land. The disciples were told they would experience God's presence as they go into all lands to carry out the mission of God.
Moses does not enter the promised land, but leads the people out of the slavery and leads them to the place of promise. His body cannot be found. Jesus' resurrected body cannot be found, because he is risen. Moses is buried on a mysterious, secret hill. Jesus ascends into heaven from an elevated place.
Both groups of people are given an imperitive. Joshua tells the people of Israel "Choose you this day whom you will serve." Jesus (the Greek transliteration of the name Joshua), says "Go into all the world..." Both clear directives.
What I wonder is this then....does the promised land of Jesus at the end of the Gospel of Matthew transition from the nation of Israel to the place where mission is done? Is our mission field, according to what Jesus says at the end of Matthew, our promised land?
Something I have been thinking about the last couple of days.