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Jewish Rabbis Reveal the Messiah...

   

 

 

 

 

Jewish Sources Used...


Tanakh: Hebrew Bible (Torah-Teaching, Nevi'im-Prophets and Ketivim-Writings).

 

Targums:   Aramaic translations of the original Hebrew Tanakh (Hebrew Scriptures) written between 200 BCE and 200 CE.

 

Talmud: Mishnah (Oral Law) and Gemara (Commentary) written about 200-500 CE.

 

Midrash: Commentaries on the Tanakh (Hebrew Scriptures) from 100-1600 CE.

 

Other Writings: Various comments of Jewish rabbis and historians. 

 

          

 

  The Concept of a Messiah

 

"All the prophets prophesied only of the days of the Messiah." [Babylonian Talmud, Sanhedrin 99a]

"A king shall come forth from the sons of Jesse, and the Messiah shall grow up from his sons’ sons." [Targum to Yesha'yahu 11:1 in the Tanakh]

"Thus says the Lord of Hosts, saying, ‘Behold the Man whose name is the Messiah who shall be revealed.’" [Targum to Z'kharyah 6:12 in the Tanakh]

"Behold the days come says the Lord that I will raise up unto David a righteous Messiah and he shall reign as King and understand." [Targum to Yirmeyahu 23:5 in the Tanakh]

"The world was created but only for the Messiah." [Babylonian Talmud, Sanhedrin 98b]

"And as for the wonders that are not the work of Adonai, when he, that is the Messiah, comes then he will heal the sick, resurrect the dead, and to the poor announce glad tidings." [4Q521, Dead Sea Scrolls at Qumran]

"I believe with faith in the coming of the Messiah, and even though he should tarry, neverthless I shall await for his coming every day." [Maimonides, Thirteen Articles of Faith, 12th principle]

"It was taught in the School of Elijah, the world will endure 6,000 years - 2,000 years in chaos, 2,000 with Torah, and 2,000 years will be the days of the Messiah." [Babylonian Talmud, Sanhedrin 97a]

"Kings and rulers shall not cease from the house of Judah…until King Messiah comes." [Targum Pseudo-Jonathan]

"Rabbi Johanan said, ‘The world was created for the sake of the Messiah, what is this Messiah’s name?’ The school of Rabbi Shila said, ‘his name is Shiloh, for it is written, until Shiloh comes. (Genesis 49:10)’" [Babylonian Talmud, Sanhedrin 98b]

"Satan said before the Holy One, blessed be He, ‘Master of the World! The light which is hidden under your throne of Glory, for whom is it?’ He said to him, ‘For him who will turn you back and disgrace you, and shame your face.’ He (Satan) said to him, ‘Master of the World! Show him to me.’ He said to him, ‘Come and see him.’ When Satan saw the Messiah, he trembled and fell upon his face and said, ‘Surely this is the Messiah who in the future will cast me and all the princes of the nations of the world into Gehenna.’" [Pesiqta Rabbati page 161a]

 


 

 

  The Messiah to Appear in Israel

"And you Bethlehem-Ephrathah who are too little to be counted among the thousands of the house of Judah, from you in My name shall come forth the Messiah who is to be ruler in Israel and whose name has been called from eternity, from the days of old." [Targum Jonathan on Mikah 5:1 in the Tanakh]

"The King Messiah... from where does he come forth? From the royal city of Bethlehem in Judah." [Jerusalem Talmud, Berakoth 5a]

"The Messiah will appear in the land of Galilee." [Zohar I, Bereshith, 119a]

"The Messiah... will arise in the land of Galilee… the Messiah shall reveal himself in the land of Galilee because in this part of the Holy Land the desolation (Babylonian exile) first began, therefore he will manifest himself there first." [Zohar III, Shemoth 7b, 8b, 220a; Otzar Midrashim, 466]

"He will be with the last deliverer, (Messiah), as with the first (Moses); as the first deliverer revealed himself first to the Israelites and then withdrew, so also will the last deliverer reveal himself to the Israelites and then withdraw for a while." [Midrash Ruth Rabbath 5:6]

  

"Rabbi Hillel said, ‘there shall be no Messiah for Israel, because they have already enjoyed him in the days of Hezekiah.’ Rabbi Joseph said, ‘may God forgive him (Hillel) for saying so.  Now, when did Hezekiah flourish? During the First Temple.  Yet Zechariah, prophesying in the days of the second, proclaimed, ‘rejoice greatly O daughter of Zion. Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem. Behold, thy King cometh unto thee!  He is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass. (Zechariah 9:9)’"  [Babylonian Talmud, Sanhedrin 99a]

Even the rabbis disagreed with Hillel and other rabbis

   


  The Messiah to Provide Atonement

"The Holy One, blessed be He, will tell him (the Messiah) in detail what will befall him... their sins will cause you to bend down as under a yoke of iron and make you like a calf whose eyes grow dim with suffering and will choke your spirit as with a yoke, and because of their sins your tongue will cleave to the roof of your mouth. Are you willing to endure such things?... The Messiah will say: ‘Master of the universe with joy in my soul and gladness in my heart I take this suffering upon myself provided that not one person in Israel shall perish, so that not only those who are alive be saved in my days, but also those who are dead, who died from the days of Adam up to the time of redemption.’" [Pesikta Rabbati, Piska 36.1; Zohar II. 212a]

"Dip your morsel of bread in the vinegar (Ruth 2:14). This refers to the Messiah’s sufferings, for it is said in Isaiah 53:5: ‘He was pierced through for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities.’" [Midrash Ruth Rabbah, 2.14]

"Rabbi Yochanan said, ‘The Messiah - what is his name?’… And our Rabbis said, ‘the pale one… is his name,’ as it is written ‘Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows - yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him and afflicted.’" [Babylonian Talmud, Sanhedrin 98, p. 2]

"The Messiah our righteousness has turned from us. We are alarmed, we have no one to justify us. Our sins and the yoke of our transgressions he bore. He was bruised for our iniquities. He carried on his shoulders our sins. With his stripes we are healed (Isaiah 53). Almighty God, hasten the day that he might come to us anew; that we may hear from Mt. Lebanon (figurative reference to the Temple), a second time through the Messiah." [Ancient hymn-prayer by Eliezer Hakkalir sung during the Musaf Service on Yom Kippur; included in some Siddurs]

"Does not atonement come through the blood, as it is said: For it is the blood that maketh atonement by reason of the life!" [Babylonian Talmud, Yoma 5a referring to Vayikra (Leviticus) 17:11 in the Tanakh]

"What is the cause of the mourning (Zechariah 12:10)? It is well according to him who explains that the cause is the slaying of Messiah, the son of Joseph, as it is written, ‘And they shall look upon me whom they have pierced; and they shall mourn for him as one mourneth for his only son.’" [Babylonian Talmud, Sukkah 52a]

 


 

  The Messiah is our Redeemer

"What is the name of the King Messiah? Rabbi Abba Bar Kahana said, ‘His name is the Lord our Righteousness.’" [Midrash Lamentations Rabbah 1.16.51; Pesikta de Rab Kahana 22.5a; Midrash on Psalms 21.2; Baba Bathra 75b, Babylonian Talmud; Yalkut Shimoni, fol. 384: all referring to Yirmeyahu 23:6 in the Tanakh]

"In the times of the Messiah, the Lord shall manifest a second time His hand’ (Isaiah 11:11). He shall be the Redeemer in person so that ‘Israel shall be saved in the Lord with an everlasting salvation’ (Isaiah 45:17). And ‘his rest shall be glorious’ (Isaiah 11:10). All the world shall say, ‘It is fitting that his rest shall be glorious, for while ordinary kings acquire glory for themselves through victorious wars, and do not believe themselves to be esteemed when they are at rest, he, on the contrary, without waging war makes everyone subject to him, and all render him homage." [Commentary Minha-Ghedola in the Grand Rabbinic Bible of Amsterdam, 1700-1705— Rabbinic Bible of Bombergi]

"The Patriarchs will arise and say to the Messiah... ‘our righteous Messiah, even though we are your ancestors, you are greater than we because you did suffer for the iniquities of our children, and terrible ordeals befell you, such ordeals as did not befall earlier generations or later ones for the sake of Israel.’" [Pesikta Rabbati, Piska 37:1]

  

"The Holy One brought forth the soul of Messiah, and said to him, ‘Art thou willing to be created and to redeem my sons after 6,000 years?’ He replied, ‘I am.’ God replied, ‘If so, thou must take upon thyself chastisements in order to wipe away their iniquity, as it is written, ‘Surely our sicknesses he has carried.’ The Messiah answered, ‘I will take them upon me gladly.’" [P’Siqtha according to Hulsius in "Theologia Judaica"]

"Our sages said, ‘King Messiah is subjected to sufferings in every generation according to the sins of that generation.’ The Holy One, blessed be He, said, ‘In that hour (of the Redemption) I shall create him a new and he will no longer suffer.’" [Pesiqto Rabbati page 146b]

      Lion of Judah      

 


 

  A Messiah of Israel and the Nations

"The Messiah will be higher than Abraham, because Abraham possessed nothing except seventy souls, but King Messiah will turn to the service of God, many peoples, (i.e. other nations). More exalted than Moses, for Moses drew but a single nation to the service of God, but the King Messiah will bring to his service many peoples, and will restore peace between many kings; and even loftier than the ministering angels, for His sway will extend even over the heavens, whose movements He will miraculously change." [Rabbi Shlomoh Astruc]

"And the King Messiah will be revealed and all the nations of the world will gather around King Messiah, and the verse will be fulfilled, ‘The root of Jesse which standeth as the peoples’ ensign, unto it shall the nations seek, and his resting place shall be glory. (Isaiah 11:10)’" [Zohar 2:172b]

"The rabbis have taught, the Holy One, blessed by He, will say to Messiah ben David, may he be revealed soon in our days. ‘Ask of Me anything and I shall give it to you.’ For it is written, Adonai said to me, ‘Thou art my son, this day have I begotten thee. Ask of Me and I will give thee the nations for thine inheritance (Psalm 2:7-8).’ And when he will see that Messiah ben Joseph will be slain, he will say before Him, ‘Master of the World! I ask nothing of you except life.’ God will say to him, ‘Even before you said, "life," your father David prophesied about you, as it is written, ‘He asked life of thee, Thou gavest it to him. (Psalm 21:5)’ " [Babylonian Talmud, Sukkah 52a]

"As long as Israel dwelt in the Holy Land, the rituals and sacrifices they performed (in the Temple) removed all those diseases from the world; now the Messiah removes them from the children of the world." [Zohar 2:212a]

 


 

  Recognizing the Messiah

"Prepare the way! The King Messiah comes... may the mountains abase themselves, may the valleys be filled, may the cedars incline to render him homage. Prostrate yourselves all of you before the Messiah King, and bend your knees before him who is seated at the right hand of the Holy One." [Zohar I. 4b]

"I will raise up for them a prophet like you (Moses), from among their own people. I will put My words in his mouth and he will speak to them all that I command him. And if anybody fails to heed the words he speaks in My name, I Myself will call him to account." [Tanakh, D'varim (Deuteronomy) 18:18-19]

"Seventy weeks are decreed for your people and your holy city, to put an end to transgression, to make an end of sin, to atone for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to confirm the visions and prophets, and to anoint the Most Holy Place… After sixty-two weeks, the Messiah (Moshiach) will be cut off and have nothing. The people of a coming prince will destroy the city (Jerusalem) and the Sanctuary (Temple)." [Tanakh, Dani'el (Daniel) 9:24-26] 

   

Ark of the Covenant and Mercy Seat

"Who has believed what we have heard? To whom is the arm of Adonai revealed? For before Him he grew up like a young plant, like a root out of dry ground. He had no form or beauty. We saw him, but his appearance did not attract us. He was despised and shunned by men, a man of pains and familiar with illness; like one from whom we would hide our faces. He was despised and we had no regard for him. In truth, it was our infirmities he bore, and our pains that he suffered; yet we regarded him as punished and afflicted by God. He was wounded because of our sins and crushed because of our iniquities. The chastisement he bore made us whole, and through his wounds we are healed. We all like sheep went astray; we turned, each one, to his own way. Yet Adonai laid on him the guilt of all of us… After this ordeal, he will see satisfaction. By his knowledge my righteous servant makes many righteous; it is for their sins that he suffers. Therefore I will give him a share with the mighty; for he exposed himself to death and was numbered among the sinners. For he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors." [Tanakh,  Yesha'yahu (Isaiah) 53]
   
"I may remark then, that our Rabbis with one voice accept and affirm the opinion that the prophet is speaking of the King Messiah, and we ourselves shall adhere to the same view." [Rabbi Mosheh El-Sheikh regarding Yesha'yahu 53 in the Tanakh]

"Now there was about this time, Yeshua (Eaysoos in Greek), a wise man, if it be lawful to call him a man, for he was a doer of wonderful works, a teacher of such men as receive the truth with pleasure. He drew over to him both many of the Jews and many of the Gentiles. He was Moshiach (Christos in Greek); and when Pilate, at the suggestion of the principal men among us, had condemned him to the cross, those that loved him at the first did not forsake him, for he appeared to them alive again the third day, as the divine prophets had foretold these and ten thousand other wonderful things concerning him; and the tribe of "Christians" (followers of Messiah), so named from him, are not extinct at this day." [Antiquities of the Jews, book 18, chapter 3, paragraph 3; Yosef ben Mattityahu a.k.a Josephus]

"Our Rabbis taught: during the last forty years before the destruction of the Temple, the lot for the Lord (on Yom Kippur) did not come up in the right hand; nor did the crimson-colored strap become white (on the neck of the scapegoat); nor did the western-most light shine; and the doors of the Hekal (Temple) would open by themselves."  [Babylonian Talmud, Yoma, 39b]

"Who has gone up to heaven and come down?  Who has cupped the wind in the palms of his hands?  Who has wrapped up the waters in his cloak?  Who established all the ends of the earth?  What is his name, and what is his son's name?   Surely you know!"  [Tanakh, Mishlei (Proverbs) 30:4]

 


 

  Messiah, Resurrection and Judgment

 

“At the conclusion of this seven-year period the son of David will come.”  [Talmud, Sanhedrin, 97a]

“The righteous whom the Holy One, blessed be He, will restore to life will never return to their dust.” [Talmud, Sanhedrin, 92a]

“Since a person repudiated belief in the resurrection of the dead, he will have no share in the resurrection.” [Talmud, Sanhedrin 90a]

“I believe with a perfect faith that there will be resurrection of the dead at a time that pleases the Creator, may His Name be blessed and His remembrance exalted for all eternity.”  [Maimonides, Thirteen Articles of Faith, Article 13]

 

“The resurrection of the dead will be brought about by the Holy One, blessed be He, in this world in order to sanctify His great name in the days of Messiah, and in order to give rewards to those who love Him and fear Him in the World to Come.”  [Seder Eliyahu Rabba 5:22]

“And it shall come to pass after these things, when the time of the advent of the Messiah is fulfilled, that He shall return in glory.  Then all who have fallen asleep in Him shall rise again.  And it shall come to pass at that time that the treasuries will be opened in which is preserved the number of the souls of the righteous, and they shall come forth, and a multitude of souls shall be seen together in one assemblage of one thought, and the first shall rejoice and the last shall not be grieved.”  [Apocrypha, Baruch 30:1-5]

“And how does the Holy One, blessed be He, resuscitate the dead in the World to Come?  We are taught that the Holy One, blessed be He, takes in His hand a Great Shofar, which is a thousand cubits of the cubits of the Holy One, blessed be He, and blows it, and its sound goes from one end of the world to the other.  At the first blow the whole world shakes.  At the second blow the dust breaks up.  At the third blow their bones gather.  At the fourth blow the members become warm.  At the fifth blow their skins are stretched over them.  At the sixth blow spirits and souls enter their bodies.  At the seventh blow they become alive and stand up on their feet in their clothes.” [Midrash Alpha Bet Akiba 3:31, 9 century]

“In that hour the Holy One, blessed be He, will crown the Messiah and place a helmet of salvation on his head, and give him splendor and radiance, and adorn him with clothes of honor, and stand him up on top of a high mountain in order to bring glad tidings to Israel.”  [Pirqe Mashiah, 3:73, 7th century]

“Blessed be He Who formed you in judgment, who nourished you in judgment, and will hereafter raise you in judgment.”  [Talmud, Berachoth 58b]

“And let not your imagination give you hope that the grave will be a place of refuge for you; for by force you were formed, and by force you were born, and by force you live, and by force you die, and by force you will in the Hereafter have to give account and reckoning before the supreme King of kings, the Holy One, blessed be He.”  [Talmud, Pirke Aboth 4:29]

“The Holy One, blessed be He, will judge the righteous and wicked of Israel.  To the righteous He will grant them into Gan Eden and the wicked He will send to Gehinnom.”  [Midrash on Psalm 31]

“The Holy One, blessed be He, will sit in judgment with the righteous and wicked.  He will judge the righteous and conduct them to Gan Eden.  He will judge the wicked and condemn them to Gehinnom.  [Midrash on Psalm 1]

“The sinners of Israel with their bodies and the sinners of the Gentiles with their bodies descend to Gehinnom and are judged there for twelve months.  After twelve months their bodies are destroyed, and their souls burnt and scattered by a wind under the soles of the feet of the righteous; as it is said, ‘you shall tread down the wicked, for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet. (Malachi 4:3)[Talmud, Rosh Hashanah 16b]

“Lord of the Universe, rightly You have judged, rightly You have acquitted, rightly You have condemned, rightly You have instituted Gehinnom for the wicked and Gan Eden for the righteous.”  [Talmud, Erubin 19a]

 


 

  World to Come - Olam HaBa

 

“In the Olam HaBa the Holy One, blessed be He, will arrange a dance for the righteous in Gan Eden, He sitting in their midst; and each one will point to Him with his finger, exclaiming, ‘Lo, this is our God, we have waited for Him and He will save us; this is the Lord, we have waited for Him, we will be glad and rejoice in His salvation. (Isaiah 25:9)  [Talmud, Taanith 31a]

“Ten things the Holy One, blessed be He, will renew in the Hereafter: (1) He will illumine the world; (2) He will cause running water to issue from Jerusalem, and whoever has an ailment will find healing there; (3) He will cause trees to produce their fruit every month and all persons will eat of them and be healed; (4) All ruined cities will be rebuilt and no waste place will remain in the world; (5) He will rebuild Jerusalem with sapphires; (6) Peace will reign throughout nature; (7) He will assemble all beasts, birds, and reptiles, and make a covenant between them and Israel; (8) Weeping and wailing will cease; (9) Death will cease; (10) No more sighing, groaning, or anguish, but happiness will prevail.”  [Talmud, Pesachim 50a]

“How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of the messenger of good tidings (Isaiah 52:7), that teaches in the future the Holy One, blessed be He, will cause built-up Jerusalem to descend from heaven, and will set her upon the tops of four mountains – upon Sinai, upon Tabor, upon Hermon, and upon Carmel.  And she will stand on the tops of the mountains and give good tidings to Israel about the End, the Redemption.”  [Pesiqta Kahana, 5th century, edited by Mandelbaum, p. 466]

 

“In the future the Holy One, blessed be He, will seat the Messiah in the supernal Yeshiva, and they will call him “the Lord,” just as they call the Creator “the Lord.”  And the Messiah will sit in the Yeshiva, and all those who walk on the earth will come and sit before him to hear a new Torah and new commandments and the deep wisdom that he teaches…  And no person who hears a teaching from the mouth of the Messiah will ever forget it, for the Holy One, blessed be He, will reveal Himself in the House of Study of the Messiah, and will pour His Holy Spirit upon all those who walk on the earth, and His Holy Spirit will be upon each and every one.” [Yemenite Midrash p. 349-350]
 

“These are the glad tidings of Messiah ben David, that is, ben Adam (son of Man).  At the coming of the Messiah there will be one faith in the world…  The Messiah will reign forever over the whole world.  There will be general peace and eternal peace, and even the wild animals will cause no harm.  At the coming of Messiah Jerusalem will be settled and the air healed and nature strengthened.  The salvation of the Messiah will be accompanied by the resurrection of the dead…  Jerusalem and the Temple will be called the ‘footstool of the Adonai’… These are the glad tidings of eternal salvation.”  [Hebrew manuscript dated 15th century in British Library, London]

“In the days of King Messiah, when his kingdom is established and all Israel are gathered into it, the descent of all of them will be confirmed by him through the Holy Spirit which will rest upon him, as it is written, ‘and he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver, and he shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver’ (Mal. 3:3)  And he will establish the descent not from Israel, but from each tribe and tribe.  For he will announce that this one is from such and such a tribe…  And in that time there will be neither hunger nor war, neither jealousy nor competition, but goodness will spread over everything.  And all the delights will be as common as dust.  And the whole world will have no other occupation but only to know the Lord…  And they will attain a knowledge of their Creator as far as the power of man allows, as it is written, ‘for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea’” (Isaiah 11:9). [Maimonides, Yad HaHazaqa, Shoftim, Hilkhot M’lakhim 11-12]

“Rabbah said in the name of R. Johanan: Jerusalem of the world to come will not be like Jerusalem of the present world. Jerusalem of the present world, anyone who wishes goes up, but to that of the world to come only those invited will go.”  [Talmud, Baba Bathra 75b]

  

  All quotations are from Jewish sources.
 
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