“considering the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt; for he was looking to the reward.” ‭‭Hebrews‬ ‭11:26‬ ‭

In order that Moses COULD consider and place in the balance his decision and in order for Moses to choose a future reward, it would stand to reason that Moses was aware of Christ’s reproach and favored it over the riches of Egypt. How then was Moses able to know of the reproach of Christ? When did Moses see Christ and when did Moses learn of the reproach of Christ?

The author is stating obvious example after obvious example, this must have been common knowledge to the early church

  • Moses chose a hard life among the Jews, who were reproached by the Egyptians and their Pharaoh (Exodus 1), after having a divine revelation (Exodus 3) from God, whom Christians regard as Christ's Father.
    – Lucian
    Commented Oct 23, 2021 at 19:03

3 Answers 3


Based on Torah alone, the only “Messiah” | Ha-Mashiach הַמָּשִׁ֛יחַ ever mentioned by Moses in Leviticus 4 was a potential High Priest (Kohen Gadol) who atones for unintentional sins.

We learn the future restoration of Torah-observant Israelites would come from YHVH not an anointed High Priest, in Deuteronomy 30:1-13.

Moshe specifically mentioned in Deuteronomy 30:12 that nothing else in Heaven was needed to accomplish Torah-observance : “It is not in the heavens, that you should say, “Who among us can go up to the heavens and get it for us and impart it to us, that we may observe it?” (לֹ֥א בַשָּׁמַ֖יִם הִ֑וא לֵאמֹ֗ר מִ֣י יַעֲלֶה־לָּ֤נוּ הַשָּׁמַ֙יְמָה֙ וְיִקָּחֶ֣הָ לָּ֔נוּ וְיַשְׁמִעֵ֥נוּ אֹתָ֖הּ וְנַעֲשֶֽׂנָּה). - God’s Commandments were never chains Moshe expected some future Mashiach to free Yisrael from keeping.

The author of the NT book [Hebrews] assigns the title of “Christ” upon Moshe’s YHVH :

NKJV - [24] By faith Moses, when he became of age, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, 25 choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin, 26 esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt; for he looked to the reward.

Did Moses ever mention “Christ” as a title for “Him who is invisible”? - No. - Moses endured to see YHVH as stated in Deuteronomy 30:17.

For I command you this day, to love the YHVH your God, to walk in His ways, and to keep His commandments, His laws, and His rules, that you may thrive and increase, and that the YHVH your God may bless you in the land that you are about to enter and possess. (אֲשֶׁ֨ר אָנֹכִ֣י מְצַוְּךָ֮ הַיּוֹם֒ לְאַהֲבָ֞ה אֶת־יְהֹוָ֤ה אֱלֹהֶ֙יךָ֙ לָלֶ֣כֶת בִּדְרָכָ֔יו וְלִשְׁמֹ֛ר מִצְוֺתָ֥יו וְחֻקֹּתָ֖יו וּמִשְׁפָּטָ֑יו וְחָיִ֣יתָ וְרָבִ֔יתָ וּבֵֽרַכְךָ֙ יְהֹוָ֣ה אֱלֹהֶ֔יךָ בָּאָ֕רֶץ אֲשֶׁר־אַתָּ֥ה בָא־שָׁ֖מָּה לְרִשְׁתָּֽהּ)

The author of NT Hebrews 11:26-28 attempts to establish YHVH your God from Deuteronomy could have been an anointed one or “Christ”. - Which leaves readers asking : Why would God need to be Anointed?

The “Christ” הַמָּשִׁ֛יחַ Mashiach was a religious concept of an anointed human Israelite serving YHVH as Kohen Gadol which was observed by Moses. - The reward for which Moshe endured affliction was not to see a “Christ” but instead to see the face of God YHVH. Moshe’s desire in Exodus 33:18 was to see the כְּבֹדֶֽךָ Presence of Elohim (ascribed to Jesus the Nazarene by NT authors).

If only Moses was able to respond to the author of Hebrews to somehow clarify the name of the only Being who could reward a pardon his sins : “If I have gained Your favor, YHVH, pray, let YHVH go in our midst, even though this is a stiffnecked people. Pardon our iniquity and our sin, and take us for Your own!” (אִם־נָא֩ מָצָ֨אתִי חֵ֤ן בְּעֵינֶ֙יךָ֙ אֲדֹנָ֔י יֵֽלֶךְ־נָ֥א אֲדֹנָ֖י בְּקִרְבֵּ֑נוּ כִּ֤י עַם־קְשֵׁה־עֹ֙רֶף֙ ה֔וּא וְסָלַחְתָּ֛ לַעֲוֺנֵ֥נוּ וּלְחַטָּאתֵ֖נוּ וּנְחַלְתָּֽנוּ)

שַׁבָּת שָׁלוֹם

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    You’ve essentially made an argument that leads to the inevitable conclusion that the author of Hebrews is claiming the Christ is God. And the Christ to the author of Hebrews is Jesus. Commented Oct 22, 2021 at 15:57
  • I would venture to say that Moses had an even earlier redeemer in mind, the universally expected serpent head crusher, whose heel would be bruised Commented Oct 22, 2021 at 15:59

Moses obviously did not see the reproach of Christ since he preceded the arrival of the Messiah by about 1500 years. Even if Moses did interact with the Son of God, with or without awareness of who he was, there would have been no reproach to see. There is also no evidence in the Torah, that I can think of, that Moses understood what would happen to the Messiah, the prophet who would come after him.

Hebrews 11 is about faith.

1Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see2. This is what the ancients were commended for.

Moses demonstrated his faith by spurning the riches of Egypt to suffer reproach similar to what the followers of Christ have to suffer.

26considering the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt; for he was looking to the reward. NASB

I don’t think the author is comparing Moses’ sufferings to those of Christ, which were far greater. He is reinforcing with OT examples the point he made in the previous chapter.

10 32But remember the former days, when, after being enlightened, you endured a great conflict of sufferings, 33partly by being made a public spectacle through reproaches and tribulations, and partly by becoming sharers with those who were so treated. 34For you showed sympathy to the prisoners and accepted joyfully the seizure of your property, knowing that you have for yourselves a better possession and a lasting one. 35Therefore, do not throw away your confidence, which has a great reward. 36For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God, you may receive what was promised.

So no, the early church did not think Moses was privy to any special revelation about Christ’s sufferings. But they were inspired by the patriarch’s example to suffer for Christ themselves in order to reap the unfathomable rewards of eternal life with Him.

  • That’s interesting because all the examples used in this chapter are well known and unambiguous Commented Oct 22, 2021 at 16:01
  • 1
    @NihilSineDeo Actually some of the examples at the end of the chapter are not named. But the author is examining these heroes with the lens of faith, demonstrating the universal importance of faith for salvation. Commented Oct 22, 2021 at 18:24
  • Good answer, saves me stating the obvious. Although the son of god reference is quite odd.
    – Steve
    Commented Oct 22, 2021 at 22:55
  • Thanks @steveowen. The OT is very circumspect in its references to the Son. But there are references, even if cryptic, that I'm sure you are aware of. Some see him everywhere and you may not see him at all. I believe that he was purposefully hidden for later revelation, but that's another discussion that we should probably avoid here. Commented Oct 23, 2021 at 0:31

How did Moses see the reproach of Christ, according to Hebrew 11:26?

Moses foretold that a greater prophet like him was coming;

Deuteronomy 18:15-19 NASB

15 “The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your countrymen; to him you shall listen. 16 This is in accordance with everything that you asked of the Lord your God at Horeb on the day of the assembly, saying, ‘Do not let me hear the voice of the Lord my God again, and do not let me see this great fire anymore, or I will die!’ 17 And the Lord said to me, ‘They have [a]spoken well. 18 I will raise up for them a prophet from among their countrymen like you, and I will put My words in his mouth, and he shall speak to them everything that I command him. 19 And it shall come about that whoever does not listen to My words which he speaks in My name, I Myself will [b]require it of him.

Many Jews perceived that the above referred to Jesus as the prophet. The apostles wrote about him.

John 5:46 NASB "For if you believed Moses, you would believe Me; for he wrote about Me."

Acts 3:22-23 NASB

22 Moses said, ‘The Lord God will raise up for you a prophet like me from your countrymen; to Him you shall listen regarding everything He says to you. 23 And it shall be that every soul that does not listen to that prophet shall be utterly destroyed from among the people.’

John 7:40 NET

Differing Opinions About Jesus

40 When they heard these words, some of the crowd[a] began to say, “This really[b] is the Prophet!”[c]

  • Agreed that this was spoken of Moses later but this comment comes at the time when Moses was still 40yo or less and had not had the burning bush encounter. He was relying on a commonly held understanding/knowledge Commented Oct 22, 2021 at 16:04
  • Nihil Sine Deo : This is not so, Moses did forty years at Midian, the humble occupation of shepherding in Midian provided the training needed to develop fine qualities that would be even more important for the task ahead of him. It was toward the end of his 40-year sojourn in Midian, Moses was shepherding Jethro’s flock near Mount Horeb when he was amazed to see a thornbush flaming with fire but not consumed. Commented Oct 23, 2021 at 18:39

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