I have read some of your articles. I do not see how Jesus meets the criteria given for Messiah in the Tanakh… SITUATION OF HIS BIRTH Christians say he had no biological father. Therefore he had no lineage through Joseph to forebears. Christians then claim that he was ‘adopted’ or that the lineage was through his mother; but these are irrelevant for Jewish law. TIME OF HIS MATURITY During the time Jesus was a man, the Jews did NOT all return to Israel Isaiah 11,11-12; Jeremiah 23,8; 30,3; Hosea 3,4-5). Jerusalem did NOT become the center of all world government, both for Jews and Gentiles (Isaiah 2,2-4; 11,10; 42,1). The Temple was NOT rebuilt (Jeremiah 33,18). The world did NOT become a place of peace (Isaiah 2, 4) and properity (Isaiah, 11, 6-9). Everyone (in the world} did NOT begin to know, praise and worship YHWH as the one God(Isaiah 2,3; 11,10; Micah 4,2-3; Zechariah 14,9). Christians say… “That will all happen the NEXT time he comes”. I have studied the Bible for over 40 years… Nowhere in the Tanakh does it say Messiah will come… teach, perform miracles, be tortured, killed, resurrect briefly, THEN GO AWAY for at least several thousand years… and THEN COME BACK… By the way, I am not Jewish. Thanks
I can see how if you make certain presuppositions about the interpretation of certain passages you would have questions. Let me do my best to respond to your questions.
1. Jesus was “the Root of Jesse” by descent through is mother Mary (genealogy in Matthew 1) and, by adoption, through his adopted father Joseph (genealogy in Luke 3). Add to that the expectation that the Messiah would be born miraculously from a maiden/virgin (Isaiah 7:13) The passage in Isaiah 7:13 has the mother of the Messiah as a young maiden, but the Jewish translation, the Septuagint, had the Greek word for virgin, so the Jews understood that the Messiah would be the son of a virgin. So, Jesus DID fulfill this expectation. Whatever the Law says it does not define by law who is a “son of”, and besides, the Jewish expectation was for the Messiah to be the son of a virgin.
2. Isaiah 11:11-12 does not include the word all. You are adding a word to the scripture which is not there. I say that Jesus certainly DID fulfill this messianic expectation that the Root of Jesse (Jesus was directly descended from Jesse) would rally all the nations to the God of Israel (Jesus brought the God of Israel, literally, to all nations) and bring back a remnant of the Jews. These fullfillments are a matter of history.
3. Jeremiah 23:8 does mention all nations, but it does NOT mention all descendants. The Messiah will bring the descendants, but I do not see the word all there. Again, you are adding a word to the text which is not there. The same goes for Jeremiah 30:3. It says that Messiah will bring Israel and Judah back to God. Jesus fulfilled this prophecy. This prophecy was also fullfilled when God brought the captives back out of Babylon when Cyrus restored Israel to the Promised Land.
4. On Isaiah 2:2 Jesus and the church he established definitely did fulfill this prophecy. The true Israel under the Messiah is the Church of Jesus Christ and, as prophesied, Jesus brought all nations into his Kingdom through the gospel and the work of the Church. Isaiah 2:2 is a prophecy of God’s Kingdom, as revealed in the Church.
5. About Jeremiah 33:18, this prophecy is fulfilled in the Church established by Jesus the Messiah. In Exodus 19:6) it was prophesied that God would make of his people a kingdom of priests. This is fulfilled in the Christian church in which all members are priests of God (1 Peter 2:9). It is hard to see how working within the Old Covenant Exodus 19:6 could have been fulfilled. But, as it says in Jeremiah 31:31f, Messiah will bring in a New Covenant, as fulfilled by Jesus. The Church fulfills Jeremiah 33:18. In AD 70 Herod’s temple was destroyed because the Old Covenant “was old and fading and soon disappeared” (Hebrews 8:13). Jesus, after his resurrection and ascension, occupied the heavenly temple which was a fulfillment of the Old Covenant temple (Hebrews 9)
6. Before heave, the world will never be a place of peace. Surely you understand that. However, in the Kingdom of God on earth, the church, these prophecies (Isaiah 2:4 11:6-9) are fulfilled. I am part of a church where rich, poor, black, white, Asian, Republican, Democrat, and every other conceivable kind of person is joined in beautiful peace and harmony–something the world will NEVER achieve. Neither have the Jews been able to do this. Jesus truly did establish a kingdom which fulfills these passages beautifully.
You say that “Nowhere in the Tanakh does it say Messiah will come… teach, perform miracles, be tortured, killed, resurrect”
I beg to differ. In Isaiah 29:18 and Isaiah 35:5 (and many other passages) it is prophesied that Messiah will work miracles. In Psalm 22:16 it is prophesied that Messiah will be crucified (tortured, killed). In Genesis 22, by foreshadow, it is prophesied that the Messiah would resurrect on the third day (see Hebrews 11:17-19).
Now, I will agree with you that there is no prophecy that the final resurrection would follow by 2000+ years the coming of the Messiah. You are right there. But then again, neither is there a prophecy that it will NOT be 2000+ years between the coming of the Messiah and the final resurrection. This subject is not mentioned either way. The fact that a particular thing is not prophesied does not prove that it will not happen (unless one has a passage says that it will not happen). This is not proof that Jesus would be the Messiah. Do you have a prophecy about the Messiah that the final resurrection would come immediately at the time Messiah comes? I do not know of one.
Besides, the Tanakh prophesied that the Messiah would be betrayed for 30 pieces of silver (Zechariah 11:12), he would ride into Jerusalem on a donkey colt (Zechariah9:9), that he will be crucified, that his bones would not be broken and that his garments would be gambled over (Psalm 22:16), he would be born in Bethlehem (Micah 5:2) but come from Galilee (Isaiah 9:1f), and that he would come to Jerusalem and bring in everlasting righteousness in about AD 30 (Daniel 9:25-26). Jesus fulfilled the entire range of messianic prophecies, including ones for which it would literally be impossible for them to be fulfilled by ANYONE today.
So, I disagree with our contention that Jesus cannot be the Messiah based on lack of fulfillment of legitimate Old Testament expectations. He may not have fulfilled some of the Jewish expectations, but that may be because their expectations were not in line with scripture.
I hope this helps.