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Christians say that Jesus is the prophet like Moses.

In the Book of Deuteronomy, God says through Moses:

The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your fellow Israelites. You must listen to him. For this is what you asked of the Lord your God at Horeb on the day of the assembly when you said, “Let us not hear the voice of the Lord our God nor see this great fire anymore, or we will die.” (Deuteronomy 18:15-16)

Referring to when the Israelites asked Moses to speak to them directly instead of God, after He revealed the ten commandments:

When the people saw the thunder and lightning and heard the trumpet and saw the mountain in smoke, they trembled with fear. They stayed at a distance and said to Moses, “Speak to us yourself and we will listen. But do not have God speak to us or we will die.” (Exodus 20:19)

But when Jesus arrived, both during his baptism and during the transfiguration, God shows his voice again.

And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.” (Matthew 3:17)

While Peter was still speaking, a bright cloud enveloped them, and a voice from the cloud said, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Listen to Him!" (Matthew 17:5)

Why would God show his voice again when the prophet like Moses arrived if the very reason he sent Moses was that he wouldn't need to show his voice?

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    God spoke to Israel to inform them that he had appointed someone (Moses) to speak to them. Then, later, God speaks to inform the hearers (either Israel penitent to the ministry of John the Baptist or the disciples, tutored by instruction) whom to hearken to.
    – Nigel J
    Jan 1, 2022 at 8:38

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God spoke (as you record) to Israel to inform them that he had appointed someone (Moses) to speak to them.

Then, later, God speaks (as you record) to inform the hearers (either, firstly, Israel penitent to the ministry of John the Baptist or, secondly, the disciples, tutored by instruction) whom to hearken to : Jesus the Christ, God's beloved Son.

There is no contradiction here.

Quite the opposite, there is agreement.

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Is Jesus the prophet of Deuteronomy 18?

Yes. In all Christian traditions and denominations, it is undisputable that Jesus was the prophet referred to in Deut 18.

Why would God show his voice again when the prophet like Moses arrived if the very reason he sent Moses was that he wouldn't need to show his voice?

There is a big difference in purpose between how God appeared to all Israel when giving his 10 commandments (Ex 20:1-21) with how God spoke in Jesus's baptism and in Jesus's transfiguration:

  • In the 10 commandments case, God spoke along with flashes of lightning and smoke billowing from the mountain (Ex 20:18-20) which made Israel very afraid thinking they would die. But Moses assured them that God appeared that way so that they would fear him and that would keep them from sinning.
  • In Jesus's baptism God spoke along with a dove, no mention of anyone being afraid (Matt 3:16-17). The purpose was to show that God approved of Jesus his Son, who brought him great joy.
  • In Jesus's transfiguration God spoke from a bright cloud (Matt 17:5-7) which made the disciples terrified and fell face down on the ground. We were not told why they were terrified, but Christians understand this as not as terrifying as in Ex 20 (the disciples were not in danger of dying) and the purpose was also to show that God approved of Jesus his Son, who brought him great joy.

Israel's request to Moses was recorded this way:

  • “You speak to us, and we will listen. But don’t let God speak directly to us, or we will die!” (Ex 20:19)
  • You said, ‘Don’t let us hear the voice of the Lord our God anymore or see this blazing fire, for we will die.’ (Deut 18:16b)

God promised Israel this way (Deut 18:18-20):

18 I will raise up a prophet like you from among their fellow Israelites. I will put my words in his mouth, and he will tell the people everything I command him. 19 I will personally deal with anyone who will not listen to the messages the prophet proclaims on my behalf. 20 But any prophet who falsely claims to speak in my name or who speaks in the name of another god must die.’

God fulfilled his promise this way:

  • When teaching them, He didn't speak directly but through true prophets, including Moses and Jesus
  • He never speak with blazing fire again, including during baptism and transfiguration.
  • The content of the speech in baptism and transfiguration was NOT teaching, but announcement of approval and joy, authenticating Jesus as a true prophet.

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