Not only is the Bible resplendent with prophetic verses, it is also full of prophetic types. Prophecy in type is symbolic prophecy. Think of it as prophecy that has come alive, embodied in the life of a person, ceremony or thing.
Adam as an Anti-type to Jesus
Paul refers to this kind of prophecy in Romans 5:14 where he points to Adam as “a type of Him who was to come.” Adam, a major Old Testament figure, serves as a type of Christ, although he is really more of an anti-type. An anti-type is a negative symbol that points to positive truths. Adam’s anti-typical prophetic nature is seen in the following comparison, published in The Christ in Prophecy Study Guide by Dr. David R. Reagan, pages 7-8.
- Adam had a living soul (1 Cor. 15:45) — Jesus a life-giving spirit (1 Cor. 15:45).
- Adam was of this earth (1 Cor. 15:47) — Jesus from Heaven (1 Cor. 15:47).
- Adam rebelled against God (Gen. 3:1-7) — Jesus obeyed God perfectly (Heb. 5:8-9).
- Through Adam, all were made sinners (Rom. 5:19) — Through Jesus many will be made righteous (Rom. 5:19).
- Adam brought death (Rom. 5:14-15; 1 Cor. 15:22) — Jesus brought life (Heb. 2:14-15).
- Adam lost dominion (Gen. 1:26 and Gen. 3:17-24) — Jesus won dominion (Heb. 2:5-9).
Paul further explains this in more detail in 1 Corinthians 15:35-58 where he’s comparing and contrasting between Adam and Jesus. While the shedding of man’s blood (like Abel’s) brings nothing but death, the shedding of the Perfect Man’s blood brings life. While Adam had a living soul that birthed the entire human race, better is Jesus who is a life-giving spirit whose salvation births eternal life.