The Holy Passages of the Messiah

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Although the Gospel of Matthew and the Gospel of Luke give different accounts of the birth of Jesus, both place the birth in Bethlehem. They respond by quoting Micah, "In Beit-Lechem of Y'hudah," they replied, "because the prophet wrote, 'And you, Beit-Lechem in the land of Y'hudah, are by no means the least among the rulers of Y'hudah; for from you will come a Ruler who will shepherd my people Isra'el.

The idea that Bethlehem was to be the birthplace of the Messiah appears in no Jewish source before the 4th century CE. Many modern scholars consider the birth stories as inventions by the Gospel writers, created to glorify Jesus and present his birth as the fulfillment of prophecy.

Messiah in the Bible

Some portions of the Psalms are considered prophetic in Judaism, even though they are listed among the Ketuvim Writings and not the Nevi'im Prophets. The words Messiah and Christ mean "anointed one". In ancient times Jewish leaders were anointed with olive oil when they assumed their position e. David, Saul, Isaac, Jacob. In many Psalms, whose authorship are traditionally ascribed to King David i. Thus it can be argued that many of the portions that are asserted to be prophetic Psalms may not be.

The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD and his Anointed, saying, 3. He who sits in the heavens laughs; the LORD has them in derision. Then he will speak to them in his wrath, and terrify them in his fury, saying, 6. Ask of me, and I will make the nations your heritage, and the ends of the earth your possession. Psalm 2 can be argued to be about David; the authors of Acts and the Epistle to the Hebrews interpreted it as relating to Jesus. Saint Augustine identifies "the nations [that] conspire, and the peoples [that] plot in vain" as the enemies referred to in Psalm "Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool.

Verse 7. In Judaism the phrase "Son of God" has very different connotations than in Christianity, not referring to literal descent but to the righteous who have become conscious of God's father of mankind. Christians cite Herod and Pontius Pilate setting themselves against Jesus as evidence that Psalm 2 refers to him. Hebrews employs verse 7 in order to argue that Jesus is superior to the angels, i. Texts vary in the exact wording of the phrase beginning Psalm , with "kiss his foot", and "kiss the Son" being most common in various languages for centuries, though not in original Hebrew Manuscripts such as the Dead Sea Scrolls.

I keep the Lord always within my sight; for he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. For this reason my heart is glad and my soul rejoices; moreover, my body also will rest secure, for thou wilt not leave my soul in the abode of the dead, nor permit thy holy one to see corruption. Thou wilt show me the path of life, the fullness of joys in thy presence, and delights at thy right hand forever" Psalms The interpretation of Psalm 16 as a messianic prophecy is common among Christian evangelical hermeneutics. Being therefore a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him that he would set one of his descendants upon his throne, he foresaw and spoke of the resurrection of the Christ, that he was not abandoned to Hades, nor did his flesh see corruption.

This Jesus God raised up, and we are all witnesses of it" Acts 2: Also of note is what Paul said in the synagogue at Antioch. Two of the Gospels Matthew and Mark quote Jesus as speaking these words from the cross; [52]. From the cross, Jesus cried with a loud voice, "Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?

The other two canonical Gospels give different accounts of the words of Jesus. Some scholars see this as evidence that the words of Jesus were not part of a pre-Gospel Passion narrative, but were added later by the Gospel writers. This translation is highly controversial. He guards all his bones: not even one of them shall be broken. Ray Pritchard has described Psalm as a messianic prophecy. Christians believe that this verse refers to Jesus' time on the cross in which he was given a sponge soaked in vinegar to drink, as seen in Matthew , Mark , and John It is quite difficult because verse 3 is totally obscure, and the psalm speakers often.

In Christian interpretation, it is understood as a reference to Jesus, as a messianic and sometimes eschatological psalm; Radak polemicizes against this view" [ citation needed ] 1. Here God is speaking to the king, called my lord ; Perhaps these are the words spoken by a prophet. The king is very proximate to God, in a position of privilege, imagined as being on His right hand in the Divine Council. The second-in-command was seated to the right of the king in the ancient Near East.

Such images are rare in psalms, but see Psalm If the king trods on the back of his enemies see Joshua , they poetically become his "Footstool" 2. In contrast to v. The Zion tradition see Isaiah ; and royal tradition are here connected. While v. Psalm is viewed as messianic in both Jewish and Christian tradition. For this reason the verse is among those most frequently used by New Testament authors, either as an explicit quotation or as an allusion. In Acts , Peter refers to the similar glorification of Jesus in the context of the resurrection [63]. Psalm The gospel writers interpret the psalm as a messianic prophecy: "while the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them a question, saying, 'What do you think of the Christ?

Whose son is he? If David thus calls him Lord, how is he his son?

According to Augustine of Hippo ,: "It was necessary that all this should be prophesied, announced in advance. We needed to be told so that our minds might be prepared. He did not will to come so suddenly that we would shrink from him in fear; rather are we meant to expect him as the one in whom we have believed. I will be his father, and he shall be my son. If he commit iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the children of men:" KJV. Hebrews quotes this verse as, "I will be his Father, and he will be my Son. The phrase as quoted in Hebrews is generally seen as a reference to the Davidic covenant , whereby God assures the king of his continued mercy to him and his descendants.

The Deuterocanonical books are considered canonical by Catholics , Eastern Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox , but are considered non-canonical by Jews and Protestants. Shout in triumph, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king is coming to you; He is just and endowed with salvation, Humble, and mounted on a donkey, Even on a colt, the foal of a donkey.

Christian authors have interpreted Zechariah as a prophecy of an act of messianic self-humiliation.


The Synoptic Gospels make clear that Jesus arranged this event, thus consciously fulfilling the prophecy. Matthew describes the prophecy in terms of a colt and a separate donkey, whereas the original only mentions the colt; the reference in Zechariah is a Jewish parallelism referring only to a single animal, and the gospels of Mark , Luke , and John state Jesus sent his disciples after only one animal.

In the most ancient Jewish writings Zechariah is applied to the Messiah. Zechariah is another verse commonly cited by Christian authors as a messianic prophecy fulfilled by Jesus. In some of the most ancient Jewish writings, Zechariah is applied to the Messiah ben Joseph in the Talmud, [75] [ need quotation to verify ] and so is verse 12 "The land will wail, each family by itself: The family of the House of David by themselves, and their women by themselves; the family of the House of Nathan by themselves, and their women by themselves" , there being, however, a difference of opinion whether the mourning is caused by the death of the Messiah ben Joseph, or else on account of the evil concupiscence Yetzer hara.

The Gospel of John makes reference to this prophecy when referring to the crucifixion of Jesus, as can be seen in the following account:.


But one of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear, and immediately blood and water came out. And he who has seen has testified, and his testimony is true; and he knows that he is telling the truth, so that you also may believe. Among Christian believers, opinion varies as to which Old Testament passages are messianic prophecies and which are not, and whether the prophecies they claim to have been fulfilled are intended to be prophecies. The authors of these Old Testament "prophecies" often appear to be describing events that had already occurred. For example, the New Testament verse states:.

And so was fulfilled what the Lord had said through the prophet: 'Out of Egypt I called my son. This is referring to the Old Testament verse Hosea However, that passage reads,. Skeptics say that the Hosea passage clearly is talking about a historical event and therefore the passage clearly is not a prophecy. According to modern scholarship, the suffering servant described in Isaiah chapter 53 is actually the Jewish people. As noted above, there is some controversy about the phrase " they have pierced my hands and my feet ". For modern Bible scholars, either the verses make no claim of predicting future events, or the verses make no claim of speaking about the Messiah.

What is the rationale for distorting the scriptures so flagrantly? Well, the answer, of course, is obvious: the gospel writers were desperate to prove that their man Jesus was the Messiah who had been promised in the Old Testament. Since there really were no prophecies of a virgin-born, crucified, resurrected Messiah in the Old Testament, they had to twist and distort to give the appearance that Jesus was the long-awaited one.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Jewish scripture quoted to support the claim that Jesus is the Messiah. Main article: Prophecy of Seventy Weeks.

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Main article: Pele-joez-el-gibbor-abi-ad-sar-shalom. Main article: Isaiah See also: Sayings of Jesus on the cross and They have pierced my hands and my feet. Main article: Davidic dynasty in Bible prophecy. Ehrman, The Historical Jesus. Part I. The Teaching Company, , p. Who Invented Christianity? A Suffering Messiah. Jewish Expectations of the Messiah".

HarperCollins, USA. Westminster John Knox Press. Book of Ezekiel, chapter 37, verses from 15 to 24". Archived from the original on Nov 13, Mohr Siebeck. Archived from the original on Nov 25, Bible Gateway. The Zondervan Corporation. Retrieved 2 January Brooklyn, N. July 5, Oxford University Press — via Google Books. The first time the people were not so severely shocked and alarmed, but when Sennacherib would return and uproot the remaining population of the Northern Kingdom, the distress would be felt much more intensely.

The land is called 'region of the nations', because so many peoples desired it. The Rabbinic Interpretation of Isaiah 53". Outreach Judaism. Tovia Singer.

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In fact, Origen, a prominent and influential church father, conceded in the year CE — eight centuries before Rashi was born — that the consensus among the Jews in his time was that Isaiah 53 "bore reference to the whole [Jewish] people, regarded as one individual, and as being in a state of dispersion and suffering, in order that many proselytes might be gained, on account of the dispersion of the Jews among numerous heathen nations. Isaiah 53, which is the fourth of four renowned Servant Songs, is umbilically connected to its preceding chapters.

Verse 8 seems to speak of a king that rules over the whole earth, not just the nations that surround Israel itself:. God uses this Father-Son terminology when he speaks in a voice from heaven at both Jesus' baptism Matthew and at his Transfiguration Matthew : "This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased. In John's Gospel, Jesus used this kind of Father-Son metaphor extensively, to such an extent that the Jews believed he was applying it in the sense of claiming to be divine himself John ; , accused him of blasphemy, and tried to stone him.

The revealed truth of this Father-Son metaphor is so strong and important that feminist attempts in our day to remove the male, "paternalistic" overtones of the metaphor come up short and seriously shortchange our understanding. They typically fall back to Creator-Christ terminology which, though true, gut the important relational elements of the Father-Son metaphor which are clearly part of the relation of God and Christ.

This Father-Son metaphor is first clearly revealed in Psalm Here it may have a figurative sense. The sense in which Jesus was begotten has spawned some heresies in church history. The Jehovah's Witnesses have continued this idea that "only begotten" meant that Jesus was created. The Jehovah's Witnesses' New World Translation infamously translates John as "the word was a god " rather than "the Word was God" all other modern translations.

Some liberal theologians, seeking to deny the inherent divinity of Jesus, have suggested that Jesus was an ordinary man who was "begotten" when he received the Holy Spirit at his baptism. It is impossible to trace all these arguments here, but orthodox Christians have always maintained Christ's essential divinity, as clearly delineated in the Nicene Creed originally in and finally in AD :.

The Nicene Creed made clear that Jesus was not some kind of divine human or lesser God, but that his divinity was on a par with that of the Father Himself -- "very God of very God," that is, "true God coming from the true God. I've probably said more than you ever wanted to know about Jesus being "begotten," but since it figures so prominently in our understanding of who Jesus is, I felt that it is important for you to know.

The Hebrew text bar , "son" seems to be best translated "kiss the Son. But whether the translation is "kiss the Son" as seems called for by the text or "kiss his feet," the point is that the kings and rulers of the earth need to submit to Yahweh's anointed Son with the kiss of homage before he comes with might to put down their rebellion towards him.

Psalm - The Messiah as Priest and King Psalm is attributed to David and referred to as "a psalm," which probably means an accompanied song. Though the Jews of Jesus' time saw Psalm as Messianic, they saw the Messiah in purely human terms, as a physical descendent of David, and thus inferior to David.

Jesus' question, based on his careful understanding of this psalm, revealed the "greater than David" nature of the Messiah. Now the psalmist declares that Yahweh will extend the Messiah's kingdom far beyond the boundaries of Israel:. Messiah's rule will be resisted by his enemies as in Psalm 2 , but will be extended by force with the Messiah at the head of a mighty army verse 3; see Revelation Throughout the Psalms is the image of Yahweh as the Mighty Warrior. Yahweh's Messiah, the one that reigns for him and extends his rule, is the Mighty Warrior par excellence!

Psalms: Looking Forward to the Messiah (Psalms 2, , and 22)

The Jews of Jesus' day understood Messiah coming as a conquering king who would set up Yahweh's kingdom on earth, reviving the glory days of David's rule. What they did not understand was the Messiah as a priest. Verse 4 presents a cryptic image:. Melchizedek was a contemporary of Abraham.

He was both king of Jerusalem and priest of the Most High God. Because of his position as a priest of the God that Abraham served, Abraham presented him with one tenth of the spoils of battle Genesis The writer of Hebrews, in an extensive exposition of Psalm Hebrews ; , clearly sees Melchizedek as a type of Christ our High Priest though not as an actual appearance of Christ himself, as some hold. Psalm combines the roles of king and priest in a way that is unheard of elsewhere in the Old Testament.

Only when we understand Jesus as the Suffering Servant of Isaiah 53, who in himself bore our sins and carried our iniquities, can we understand how Jesus served as a priest to bring us to God. The Apostle Paul put it this way:. Psalm concludes with a poetic prophecy of how the Messiah will exert his rule over all his enemies, fulfilled ultimately at the Battle of Armageddon and the final battle at the end of days spoken of in Revelation:.

Verse 7 concludes the psalm with the Warrior-Messiah pausing to refresh himself at a brook as he is in pursuit of his enemy, and then continuing on, like Gideon at the Jordan, "faint yet pursuing. Psalm 22 is a remarkable psalm indeed. In the context of the Old Testament, it can be seen as a lament followed by a hymn of praise. But in the context of the New Testament, it must be clearly seen as a psalm pointing again and again to the crucifixion of Christ.

Frost went so far as to call this psalm the "Fifth Gospel" account of the crucifixion. Peter notes that David was a prophet Acts Indeed he was filled with the Spirit at his anointing. But did David know what he was saying?

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I doubt it. When he wrote the first part of the psalm, he probably was expressing his own deep lament in highly figurative terms -- figures that were brought to his mind by the Holy Spirit.

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This side of the cross, however, those figures speak to us strongly of Jesus' crucifixion. Were they intended by David to refer to the cross? Were they intended by the Spirit to speak of Jesus' crucifixion. Of that I have no doubt. But I'm getting ahead of myself. Before the Psalms were numbered, a particular psalm would be referred to by its first line. In speaking the first line of Psalm 22, Jesus pointed not to just the first verse, but to the whole psalm.

However, his quoting the first line may be significant as well. Though we are probing here beyond the explicit teaching of scripture, when Jesus was on the cross bearing our sins, he may have felt spiritual separation from the holy God because of our sin he was bearing. He felt alone because he took our sin and guilt upon himself. In the Qal stem it can mean 1 "to sit on anything, 2 "to remain, stay, linger," 3 "to dwell in a house, city, territory," and 4 of a place, city, or country being inhabited.

God is everywhere; there is nowhere we can go where he is not Psalm But from our human perspective, when we worship and praise God we can certainly sense his presence much more easily. By our praise, we declare him King, exalt him, and thus "enthrone" him before us. Rather than try to provide an exposition of the entire psalm, for the purposes of considering the messianic aspects of the psalm, I will focus on the verses that have the greatest correspondence with Jesus' crucifixion.

While I have no doubt that the actual events of Jesus' crucifixion took place as recorded in the Gospels, it is probable that the terminology by which they were communicated was influenced by the words of this startling psalm that we are studying:.

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Roaring lions tearing their prey open their mouths wide against me. My heart has turned to wax; it has melted away within me.

They divide my garments among them and cast lots for my clothing. This garment was seamless, woven in one piece from top to bottom. This remarkable psalm begins with a lament but ends with a hymn of praise in verses However, the author of Hebrews quotes verse 22 in reference to Jesus Hebrews And the final verses seem to point again to the Messiah that God would send:. His people would finally appreciate the depths to which the Son of God and Son of Man went to redeem us. We do declare his righteousness! And we will pass on the "Greatest Story Ever Told" to our children's children, "to a people yet unborn -- for He has done it!