Despite proclaiming that Jesus was the truth and he would guide the church into all truth and that faith gives us knowledge of God and his truth, the New Testament itself shows it was talking about shadows that it was turning into facts. 

It is suspected that Paul in particular may have known of Platonism.

Plato famously used the image of the cave. The cave allows things only to be seen as shadows cast by a fire. The argument is that observation only tells us so much about what we see or know.  In a sense everything we see is a shadow.

This idea is alluded to in the New Testament.

The notion of the rites of the Law of Moses including its feasts being shadows pointing to the Jesus era appears in Colossians 2:17. “These are a shadow of the things that were to come, but the reality however is found in Christ.”

Hebrews was thought to be written by Paul but all agree that a disciple of Paul concocted it. In Hebrews 10:1 the Platonic kind of thinking seems to appear. The Law of Moses with its rites is put down as being a shadow of what was to come with Jesus and his work. The question if Jesus’ work is not just a shadow as well is conveniently ignored.

1 Corinthians 13:12 has Paul saying that with faith stuff and God you only see shapes and shadows but it is only when you are face to face with God and Jesus in the afterlife that you will see fully.

In Colossians 2, Paul writes that even the Law of Moses is but a shadow pointing to the reality which is Jesus Christ so we must avoid anybody who is falsely humble and who worships angels. "Such a person ALSO goes into great detail about what they have seen, they are puffed-up idle notions by their unspiritual mind." So too many visions and revelations are a bad sign.  But Paul said he had a lot of visions and so on!  And how many visions are too many?  The apostles, according to Luke, saw Jesus a lot for 40 days after he rose from the dead.  They had a lot of visions then.


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