Summary: A Prophet like Moses - Deuteronomy chapter 18 verses 15-19 - sermon by Gordon Curley. PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request – email:


(1). The Prophecy: Significant References.

• Deuteronomy chapter 18 verse 15 & 18.

• Deuteronomy chapter 34 verses 10-12.

• John chapter 1 verses 19-22.

• John chapter 1 verses 43-46.

(2). The Prophecy: Similarities Between Moses & Jesus

• (a). Moses & Jesus were both “fellow Israelites.”

• (b). Moses & Jesus were both ‘Shepherds’

• (c). Moses & Jesus were ‘saviours’ of their people.

• (d). Moses & Jesus fasted for ‘40 days’.

• (e). Moses & Jesus were born at a time when evil kings pronounced death to all Jewish baby boys in the area.

• (f). Moses & Jesus both gave up royal positions to save their people.

• (g). Moses & Jesus both performed miracles.

• (h). Moses & Jesus a few more to check out!.

(3). The Prophecy: Why The Prophet is Not Mohammed

• (a). The prophet is to be an Israelite.

• (b). Moses was spoken to directly by God.

• (c). Moses performed awesome miracles.


(1). The Prophecy: Significant References.

• The Jewish people regarded Moses as the greatest prophet of all time.

• All other prophets heard God speaking in dreams and visions,

• But God spoke to Moses face to face (Numbers chapter 12 verses 6-8).

• Therefore no Old Testament prophet is more respected than Moses.

• He was the lawgiver, the emancipator of Israel, and a worker of miracles.

• As mentioned already;

• Moses had the unique privilege of speaking to God:

• “Face to face, as one speaks to a friend” (Exodus chapter 33 verse 11).

• Before he died,

• Moses commanded the Israelites to watch for the coming of another Prophet,

• This Prophet would bear some resemblance to Moses.

• So let’s read a few scriptures,

• That will help us gain an understanding of who this Prophet would be.

Quote: Deuteronomy chapter 18 verse 15 & 18.

“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.”

“I will raise up for them a prophet like you from among their fellow Israelites, and I will put my words in his mouth. He will tell them everything I command him.”

Quote: Deuteronomy 34:10-12.

“Since then, no prophet has risen in Israel like Moses, whom the LORD knew face to face, 11 who did all those signs and wonders the LORD sent him to do in Egypt – to Pharaoh and to all his officials and to his whole land. 12 For no one has ever shown the mighty power or performed the awesome deeds that Moses did in the sight of all Israel.”

Quote: John chapter 1 verses 19-22.

“Now this was John’s testimony when the Jewish leaders[c] in Jerusalem sent priests and Levites to ask him who he was. 20 He did not fail to confess, but confessed freely, ‘I am not the Messiah.’

21 They asked him, ‘Then who are you? Are you Elijah?’

He said, ‘I am not.’

‘Are you the Prophet?’

He answered, ‘No.’

22 Finally they said, ‘Who are you? Give us an answer to take back to those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?’

23 John replied in the words of Isaiah the prophet, ‘I am the voice of one calling in the wilderness, “Make straight the way for the Lord.”’

• I love John the Baptist’s reply;

• He says; “I am the voice but he is the message!”

• John was a prophet but not ‘THE prophet’!

• (Matthew chapter 11 verses 9-11)

Quote: John chapter 1 verses 43-46.

“The next day Jesus decided to leave for Galilee. Finding Philip, he said to him, ‘Follow me.’

44 Philip, like Andrew and Peter, was from the town of Bethsaida. 45 Philip found Nathanael and told him, ‘We have found the one Moses wrote about in the Law, and about whom the prophets also wrote – Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.’

46 ‘Nazareth! Can anything good come from there?’ Nathanael asked.

‘Come and see,’ said Philip.”

• In John chapter 1 verses 43-46 we find two Jewish men,

• Two friends and possible work colleagues, Philip and Nathaniel,

• Philip has encountered Jesus and is blown away by him;

• So he goes to find and inform his friend Nathaniel that;

• “We have found him of whom Moses in the Law…wrote”?

• Question: Where in Torah did Moses mention the Messiah?

• Answer:

• We know Christ is found in all the scriptures;

• We have types and shadows of Christ again and again and again.

• i.e. Abraham offering up his only son Isaac on the altar (Genesis chapter 22).

• Some books are much clearer in their prophetic references;

• i.e. Isaiah chapter 53.

• But when talking about Moses writing about the Christ in the Law;

• This verse in Deuteronomy is one of many important verses!

• And that is why that term ‘The Prophet’ is picked up by the religious leaders;

• And used in connection with the Messiah (John chapter 1 verses 19-22).

Now this verse almost seems hidden away in the eighteenth chapter of Deuteronomy:

• It is tucked away in the middle of the summary of the Law,

• Moses is talking in this section about the punishment of false prophets,

• And into that set of instructions Moses makes this remarkable prophecy.

“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.”


• What did Moses mean when he said, “like me”?

• Did this mean that the Prophet who would come would be an older man?

• (Moses was eighty years old when he brought the Israelites out of Egypt.)

• Did it mean that the Prophet would be hot-tempered and impatient?

• (Certainly Moses was that way.)

• Did it mean that the Prophet would be trained in the ways of Egyptian royalty?

• (As Moses was for the first 40 years of his life)

• Well the obvious answer to those questions is no!

• And the text itself explains what Moses meant by the description it contains.

(2). The Prophecy: Similarities Between Moses & Jesus

(a). Moses & Jesus were both “fellow Israelites.”


• Moses was Jewish. He was raised by Egyptians,

• But his birth parents and his genetics were Jewish.

• (Exodus chapter 2).


• Was also Jewish,

• And we know that Jesus’ heritage was from the tribe of Judah.

• We have his genealogies;

• (Matthew 1 chapter 1-16 & Luke chapter 3 verses 23-38)

• And in the book of Revelation (chapter 5 verse 5),

• Christ is called; ‘the Lion of Judah and the Root of David’.

(b). Moses & Jesus were both ‘Shepherds’


• Moses was a shepherd for forty years.

• So from being a prince in the king's palace in Egypt,

• Moses became a shepherd in the wilderness of Midian.

• Exodus chapter 3 verse 1 tells us:

• “Now Moses kept the flock of Jethro his father in law, the priest of Midian”


• Jesus said in John chapter 10 verse 11:

• "I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.

• In fact three times Jesus is described as a shepherd;

• Good Shepherd, Great Shepherd and the chief Shepherd.

• i.e. As the Good Shepherd (John chapter 10 verse 11):

• Jesus died for the sheep.

• i.e. As the Great Shepherd (Hebrews chapter 13 verse 20):

• Jesus lives and cares for the sheep in heaven today, working on their behalf.

• i.e. As the chief Shepherd (1 Peter chapter 5 verse 4):

• He will come for the sheep at his return.

• i.e. Our Shepherd cares for his own in the past, present and future;

• He is the same yesterday, today and forever!

(c). Moses & Jesus were ‘saviours’ of their people.


• Both were sent to bring salvation after 400 years of apparent inactivity from God;

• The Israelites had been enslaved for 400 years in Egypt

• God specifically chose Moses to lead the Israelites from captivity in Egypt;

• To salvation in the Promised Land.

• Exodus chapter 3 verses 7-10:

“The LORD said, ‘I have indeed seen the misery of my people in Egypt. I have heard them crying out because of their slave drivers, and I am concerned about their suffering. 8 So I have come down to rescue them from the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land into a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey – the home of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites. 9 And now the cry of the Israelites has reached me, and I have seen the way the Egyptians are oppressing them. 10 So now, go. I am sending you to Pharaoh to bring my people the Israelites out of Egypt.’”


• Jesus also came after 400 years of apparent inactivity from God;

• That silence was broken when an angelic being;

• Gave a message to Mary the mother of Jesus,

• Luke chapter 1 verse 31 – May was told:

• “You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus”.

• And then spoke to Joseph in a dream.

• Matthew chapter 1 verse 21 – Joseph was told:

“But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, ‘Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21 She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus,[f] because he will save his people from their sins.’”

(d). Moses & Jesus fasted for ‘40 days’.


• Now in case you miss understand me;

• Fasting is not eating ‘fast food’ like McDonalds etc.

• Talking of food I like the story that goes…

• A mum saw her little boy in the garden and to her horror he was eating a worm,

• She runs outside and shouts, “Stop!”

• Then out of curiosity she said to her little boy; “What do worms taste like?”

• The little boy replied, “a bit like slugs”

• TRANSITION: Ok, back to the serious stuff.

• Both Moses & Jesus fasted for ‘40 days’.


• Moses while on Mount Sinai,

• (Exodus chapter 34 verse 28)

“Moses was there with the LORD forty days and forty nights without eating bread or drinking water. And he wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant--the Ten Commandments.”


• Jesus fasted in the Judean desert, when being tempted by Satan,

• (Matthew chapter 4 verses 1-11).

• These temptations were put to Jesus after his forty day fast was completed,

• And they had to do with the lust of the eyes or materialism,

• The lust of the flesh or bodily drives as the boastful pride of life.

• (1 John chapter 2 verses 15-17).

(e). Moses & Jesus were born at a time when evil kings pronounced death to all Jewish baby boys in the area.


• In Exodus 1:8-22. We read that The Pharaoh of Egypt,

• Saw the people of Israel growing within his borders,

• And he wanted their population controlled.

• The problem of immigration is not a new one!

• To deal with the situation Pharaoh inflicted harsh slavery upon the people,

• And he also started a campaign of genocide to wipe out the male children:

• Out of hatred for the Israelites, Pharaoh ordered all the male babies to be killed.

• Moses parents were forced to make an escape plan:


• Herod the Great ordered what is often called ‘the massacre of the innocents’,

• (Matthew chapter 2 verse 16)

• Matthew in his gospel records that Herod carried out the act of infanticide,

• Herod ordered the execution of all young male children in the vicinity of Bethlehem,

• So as to avoid the loss of his throne to a new born King of the Jews,

• Whose birth had been announced to him by the Magi.

• Some have been sceptical of this event and questioned whether it really happened.

• For those who have studied history, though,

• It is very much in keeping with the character of King Herod.


• Herod was not a very nice man, he became increasingly paranoid and unstable.

• History records that Herod had a large number of people executed or assassinated,

• He murdered three of his own sons, as well his mother-in-law,

• And his second wife.

• His patron and friend Augustus had to admit,

• “I’d rather be Herod’s pig than his son.”

• It was not only a play on the similar sounding Greek words for son and pig,

• But a wry reference to the fact that pork, at least, was not consumed by Jews.

(f). Moses & Jesus both gave up royal positions to save their people.


• As the adopted son of Pharaoh’s daughter,

• Moses was literally a prince of Egypt.

• He was raised in the palace of the most powerful world empire at that time.

• Yet he knew all that time that he was a Hebrew and that his people were suffering.

• And he gave up his lavish lifestyle, to help save the Israelites.

• Hebrews chapter 11 verses 23-27 records the decision Moses made:

“By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be known as the son of Pharaoh’s daughter. 25 He chose to be ill-treated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of sin. 26 He regarded disgrace for the sake of Christ as of greater value than the treasures of Egypt, because he was looking ahead to his reward. 27 By faith he left Egypt, not fearing the king’s anger; he persevered because he saw him who is invisible.”


• As God the Son lived in what we could call a heavenly palace,

• A residence of the most powerful universal empire of all time.

• Yet 2 Corinthians chapter 8 verses 9 informs us:

“For you know the grace of our LORD Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.”

• This verse is given in the context of financial giving;

• It is talking about material wealth.

Quote: Frank Houghton (1894-1972) Christmas Carol:

“Thou who wast rich beyond all splendour,

All for love's sake becamest poor;

Thrones for a manger didst surrender,

Sapphire-paved courts for stable floor.

Thou who wast rich beyond all splendour,

All for love's sake becomes poor.”

(g). Moses & Jesus both Performed Miracles.


• It is difficult to find any person in the Bible,

• Who performed more miracles than Moses.

• When Pharaoh refused to ‘let God’s people go’,

• Moses was empowered to drop ten miraculous punishments on the land.

• Shortly after Pharaoh agreed to let the Hebrew people go,

• He changed his mind and sent his army after them.

• Trapped by Pharaoh’s army and the Red Sea,

• Moses was used of God tom perform a miracle of miracles!

• He parted the Red Sea, which allowed his people to cross over safely,

• But then the wall of waters collapsed killing their Egyptian pursuers.

• And as Moses led the people through the wilderness,

• They experienced miracle upon miracle.

• i.e. water from the rock & mana from heaven.

• I can’t think of anyone else in the Bible,

• Who performed more miracles than Moses.


• The three years teaching ministry of Jesus was marked by miracles,

• We have recorded 35 or 37 depending on which list you favour,

• And many more miracles were performed or took place that were not recorded!

The miracles of Jesus fall into four categories:

• Healing miracles,

• Exorcisms,

• Raising of the dead.

• Nature miracles.

• Peter on the day of Pentecost describes them this way:

• (Acts chapter 2 verse 22).

• "Jesus was …accredited by God to you by miracles, wonders and signs"

• Note these three words he uses:

• Miracles speak of the source of his power (supernatural i.e. God)

• Wonders are displays for the eyes (Unique, should cause people to ask "Who is this?")

• Signs were proof of who he was (Messiah i.e. Luke chapter 4 verses 18-19).

(h). Moses & Jesus A Few More To Check Out!.

• I have dwelt on seven similarities between Moses and Jesus.

• There are a whole lot more,

• I will give you the comparison and you can go home and think it though.


• Both instituted a covenant;

• Moses gave the Mosaic covenant, also known as the Sinaitic Covenant

• Jesus gave the New Covenanting in his blood.


• Both brought salvation for many.

• Moses with the Passover lamb’s blood on the doorposts,

• Jesus with his own blood spilt on the wooden beams of the cross.


• Both were given God’s public stamp of approval with an audible voice from heaven,

• That was heard by the crowd.

• Moses at Sinai, and Jesus at his baptism


• Both were noted for their great humility.

• Numbers chapter 12 verse 3:

• “Moses was a very humble man, more humble than anyone else on the face of the earth”

• Jesus:

• Philippians chapter 2 reminds us of the humility of Jesus.

And being found in appearance as a man,

he humbled himself

by becoming obedient to death—

even death on a cross!


• Both were criticized by their own families.

• Moses by his sister and brother in Numbers chapter 12 verse 1.

• Jesus by Mary and his brothers,

• (Mark chapter 3 verses 20-21).

“Then Jesus entered a house, and again a crowd gathered, so that he and his disciples were not even able to eat. 21 When his family[a] heard about this, they went to take charge of him, for they said, “He is out of his mind.””


• Both miraculously provided the people with bread to eat,

• Moses provided manna from heaven for the Israelites.

• Jesus fed the great crowds - twice.


• Both were willing to sacrifice their own lives for the sake of those they were leading,

• And to pay for the sins of their people.

• Moses in Exodus chapter 32,

• And Jesus the Garden of Gethsemane (Matthew chapter 26 verses 36-46).

• Now I am going to stop there,

• But there are a whole lot more comparisons between Moses & Jesus.

(3). The Prophecy: Why The Prophet is Not Mohammed

Quote: Deuteronomy chapter 18 verse 15.

“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.”

• I mentioned at the start of my sermon,

• That f you witness to a Muslim concerning Jesus Christ,

• You may be surprised to know they too like this particular verse,

• (Deuteronomy chapter 18 verse 15.)

• They apply it to Mohammed and teach this verse was fulfilled by him!

• That Mohammed is the prophet mentioned and not Jesus.

Let me just point out three quick reasons why Mohammed is not the one mentioned!

(a). The prophet is to be An Israelite.

• As we have noted already, Moses was an Israelite,

• Muhammad was born around 570 AD in an Arabian city called Mecca.

• Muhammed was an Arab (The Koran: Sura 32:3; 36:6; 34:43-44)


• If you look at the whole of Deuteronomy;

• You will see that the term “among their brothers”

• Was exclusively used for only the tribes of Israel.

• In fact the immediate context of Deuteronomy chapters 17-18;

• Is clearly referring to the children of Israel

• And is dealing with the various leadership roles WITHIN Israel:

• i.e. Judges, Deut. 17:8-13

• i.e. Kings, Deut. 17:14-20

• i.e. Priests, Deut. 18:1-8

• i.e. Prophet, Deut. 18:14

• Looking at the context;

• We see that the term “among their brothers”

• Was exclusively used for only the tribes of Israel.

(b). Moses was spoken to directly by God.

• Verse 18 of Deuteronomy chapter 18 again expands on verse 15;

• And tells us another key truth.

“I will raise up for them a prophet like you from among their fellow Israelites, and I will put my words in his mouth. He will tell them everything I command him.”

• God says he will put his words in his prophets mouth.

• Meaning God would speak to him directly, and not through an intermediary.

• We know this was the experience of Moses,

• The Bible uses a unique expression, “He spoke with God face to face”

• (Deuteronomy chapter 5 verses 1-4)

"And Moses called all Israel, and said unto them, Hear, O Israel, the statutes and judgments which I speak in your ears this day, that ye may learn them, and keep, and do them. The LORD our God made a covenant with us in Horeb. The LORD made not this covenant with our fathers, but with us, even us, who are all of us here alive this day. The LORD talked with you FACE TO FACE in the mount out of the midst of the fire,"

• The Koran teaches that Muhammad received his revelations indirectly,

• They came through the angel Gabriel (The Koran: Sura 2:97).

• And when Muhammad began receiving revelations,

• His first impression of these revelations was that they were demonic.

• The very opposite of Moses who knew it was God speaking to him;

• So once again Muhammad does not meet this expectation.

(c). Moses performed awesome miracles.

• We noted earlier that no-one in the Bible performed more miracles than Moses.

• Except Jesus.

• (i.e. John chapter 21 verse 25)

“And there are also many other things that Jesus did, which if they were written one by one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that would be written. Amen.”

• To be a prophet greater than Moses,

• You would have to do more miracles than Moses.

• Yet the Koran makes it vert clear that Muhammed never performed any miracles.

• Not a single one! (Sura 6:37 Sura 28:48)

So In Conclusion:

Question: How do we know that Jesus is the prophet predicted?


• Because of the reasons already given;

• But clearest of all reasons is:

• The New Testament confirms that the prophecy of Deuteronomy 18:18;

• Was fulfilled by Jesus the Messiah.

• Stephen is giving a speech just before he was martyred;

• And he says in Acts chapter 13 verses 376.

‘This is the Moses who told the Israelites, “God will raise up for you a prophet like me from your own people.”

And he applies it to Jesus in verse 51:

“you always resist the Holy Spirit! 52 Was there ever a prophet your ancestors did not persecute? They even killed those who predicted the coming of the Righteous One. And now you have betrayed and murdered him “


• One more important scripture to point out is Hebrews chapter 3 verses 1-6

• The theme of the passage is Jesus is worthy of more glory than Moses,

• He then goes on to give three reasons.

• (a). Because Jesus is the builder of the house,

• (i.e. which is a picture of God's people) and Moses is a part of the house (vs 3)

• (b). Jesus Made Moses (vs 4)

• Jesus is the creator and Moses is part of the creation.

• (c). Jesus is the Son of God and Moses is a servant of God (vs 5-6a)

• Therefore Jesus is greater!


• Therefore Jesus gets the glory.

• An athletes ambition is to win that Olympic gold medal;

• And to take the glory that they are the best.

• There is of course more glory in winning the gold than winning in silver,

• And there is more glory in winning the silver than in bronze.

• And there is more glory in winning the bronze;

• Than in the other competitors who cam fourth, fifth, sixth etc.

• Jesus always takes the gold!

• He not only won his race but he created all the other competitors!

• Therefore he gets all the glory and he is a prophet even greater than Moses!


Additional Notes:

• According to Zakir Naik (and many other Muslim apologists),

• They teach that Bible prophesied the coming of Muhammad in this verse.

They emphasise a number of similarities between Moses and Muhammad:

• Both had normal births.

• Both had normal deaths.

• Both led armies.

• Both were political leaders.

• Both were rejected by their people but later became their accepted leaders.

• Both brought new laws to their people.

• Both emigrated before ultimately obtaining power.

• Both had successors that conquered Palestine.

Comments on similarities

• Points 1-7 are superficial similarities having nothing to do with being a prophet.

• In fact, these points are true of a vast number of rebels,

• Who overthrew their governments

• The 8th point is irrelevant because;

• It is a similarity between their successors and not between Moses & Muhammad.

• Even if their successors were identical, that would not make Muhammad like Moses.