Messianic Apologetics

Addressing the Theological and Spiritual Issues of the Broad Messianic Movement

How Do We Know that Yeshua of Nazareth is the Messiah? – Articles

Why do any of us believe that Yeshua (Jesus) of Nazareth, is the prophesied Messiah of Israel?

Why do any of us believe that Yeshua (Jesus) of Nazareth, is the prophesied Messiah of Israel?

How Do We that Yeshua of Nazareth is the Messiah?

posted 08 November, 2019
reproduced from The Messianic Walk

Why do any of us believe that Yeshua (Jesus) of Nazareth, is the prophesied Messiah of Israel? As I have asked this question among many people in today’s Messianic movement over the years—while I have found many people who have sincerely done their homework, and have investigated various Tanach prophecies and Second Temple Jewish expectations—I have found far many more who will give subjective answers based on their supernatural experiences. While it is commendable for us to know that on a particular date we were cleansed of our sins and redeemed by the atoning work of Yeshua, our supernatural experiences can never be used as a substitute for theologically processing why we believe that Yeshua is the Messiah. When visiting the synagogue in Berea, it is said that the people “received the message with goodwill, searching the Scriptures each day to see whether these things were true” (Acts 17:11, TLV). They heard the message that the Messiah of Israel had arrived, and they checked it against the Tanach. Unfortunately for far too many of today’s Believers, we have simply been given Yeshua as the Messiah, and have not been forced into thinking through why we should even place our trust in Him.

Today’s Messianic community is a venue for Jewish outreach and evangelism. Unlike more customary Protestant evangelism, where the main purpose is to reach out with the love of the Lord to a hurting world beset by sin—the Messianic community has to go further, in invoking the First Century dynamics of “God brought to Israel a Savior—Yeshua” (Acts 13:23, TLV), in actualy proving to some significant degree that Yeshua is the anticipated Messiah. For most of today’s Messianic people, when presenting and/or defending the Messiahship of Yeshua of Nazareth, they will find themselves mainly resorting to various “proof texts” of Messianic prophecy. While not at all improper, many of us have little or no understanding as to why, and most especially how, the concept of a Messiah had developed by the period of Second Temple Judaism. We do not often consider how at various points, particularly crisis moments, in Biblical history, the concept of a Messiah who would resolve the problems of Israel and humanity, would substantially advance.

Many of today’s Messianic people are involved in Jewish outreach and evangelism via their local congregation, and/or one of the many opportunities available through a major ministry operating in Israel or in a large Diaspora Jewish sector. These people do tend to be prepared, somewhat, for having to explain why they believe that Yeshua is the Messiah of Israel. Others, however, who are interested in Jewish outreach, may not be as adequately prepared. More disturbing, to be sure, would be those in positions of Messianic congregational leadership and teaching, who are not as well equipped as they ought to be, regarding the Messiahship of Yeshua of Nazareth. Fortunately, regardless of where we have been in our individual studies, the Lord will use circumstances to focus our attention on the necessary investigations that we need to undertake, in order to be ready to best declare the good news of Israel’s Messiah to His Jewish people.

At one point in your Messianic experience, it is likely that you have encountered different materials or books or social media circulate in your local assembly, which at least questions whether or not Yeshua of Nazareth is the prophesied Messiah. It is no more inappropriate to ask whether Yeshua is the Messiah, than it is inappropriate to ask whether or not there is a God. All of us, in trying to figure out who we are as spiritual human beings, need to ask the question of whether Yeshua is the Messiah. Not infrequently, in thinking themselves to be prepared to speak of the good news of Yeshua to various Orthodox Jews, for example, one can encounter various Messianic people begin to seriously question whether He is truly the Messiah of Israel. When you see Messianics being influenced more by the people they are hoping to influence, it is a serious cause for concern. Every person, Jewish or non-Jewish, who is a part of today’s Messianic movement, is a target for being influenced by the Jewish anti-missionary movement: Jewish groups whose mission it is to specifically speak out against the Messiahship of Yeshua of Nazareth.

What do we do when any of us hear some seemingly convincing arguments against Yeshua being the Messiah? Whether we realize it or not, the Lord does not intend us to cover our ears, hide under our beds, and hum very loudly as though we did not hear anything. Instead, this is a time for us to learn, to truly consider why we believe that Yeshua is the Messiah, and to have theological confirmation in our minds of what we know in our hearts. Believe it or not, this is not something limited to an individual here or there; this is a group effort. The belief that Yeshua is the Messiah of Israel is something that Messianic congregations are to boldly declare to the Jewish community and to the world. But what does your congregation, fellowship, or study group do about this?

Does your assembly regularly have Shabbat messages, during the main service, on the Messiahship of Yeshua? Some Messianic congregations certainly do, but some Messianic congregations do not. What is the location of your assembly and its demographic profile? Some Messianic congregations’ leadership are able to fairly balance the main Messianic mission of Jewish outreach and evangelism, while at the same time welcoming in non-Jewish Believers wanting to take hold of their faith heritage in Israel’s Scriptures. Yet, some Messianic congregations can be so utterly overwhelmed with non-Jewish people, that the assembly becomes more about Hebrew Roots or Jewish Roots or Torah study, than it does about Jewish evangelism. A congregation focused on Jewish evangelism, will by necessity be teaching its people about the Messiahship of Yeshua. None of us wants to be open season for a personal visit from a Jewish anti-missionary, and see our faith shaken, when hearing claims against Yeshua—because little or no study on the Messiahship of Yeshua of Nazareth has been conducted.

The Concept of a Messiah in Second Temple Judaism

Ranging across the spectrum of Jewish history and theology, it is easily witnessed that there is a diverse array of options and opinions available at one’s disposal, regarding the concept of “the Messiah.” Those who place some importance on the life and ministry of Yeshua of Nazareth, must by necessity consider the ideas of a Messiah figure circulating within contemporary Second Temple Judaism. It is safe to say that there is no single school of thought regarding a Messiah in Second Temple Judaism, although it is widely agreed that the ideas of a Messiah figure had been piqued and honed as a consequence of the fall of Israel’s Kingdom and the consequences of the exile. That someone was to arise within the community of Israel, and fix the problems of the exile, was the major impetus behind Messianism. Various groups within Second Temple Judaism—especially including the Pharisees and the Qumran community—had opinions about a kingly or anointed figure who would come and return Israel to its fullness. These opinions, however, were not unified.

While today’s evangelical Protestants are likely to think in terms of the Messiah being a figure who would resolve the human sin problem, Ancient Jews were primarily looking for a Messiah to resolve the political disposition of Israel. Following the return of the Jewish exiles from Babylon and the reconstruction of Jerusalem and the Temple, there was still no political autonomy for Israel, and the Davidic throne was vacant. What did this mean? How could God allow this? This understandably focused the attention of many Jews on prophetic declarations and oracles speaking to the reconstitution of Israel’s Kingdom and the Davidic monarchy. The Maccabean crisis of the Second Century B.C.E., though, saw a shift in some of the ideas of Messianism toward an eschatological state of being, with discussions and speculations associated with the Kingdom of Heaven, the resurrection of the dead, and the last judgment. Ideas of an entirely political Messiah figure were steadily meshed with ideas of a spiritual or priestly and/or prophetic Messiah figure—in no small part due to the religious corruption present in the First Century B.C.E. As noted by C.A. Evans in Dictionary of New Testament Background,

“In reaction to the oppression of Greek and Roman rule, and in response to what was perceived as usurpation of the high priesthood on the part of the Hasmoneans and their successors, hopes for the appearance of a righteous king and/or priest began to be expressed. The later usurpation of Israel’s throne by Herod and his successors only fueled these hopes.”[1]

Some of the major Tanach concepts of Second Temple Judaism, would have included the raising of David (Ezekiel 34:23-24; 37:24; Hosea 3:5), and the anticipation of some sort of new age for Israel (Isaiah 63:4; 65:25; Jeremiah 31:31-34; 34:16; Ezekiel 48:35). Intertwined within this are not just emphases on political independence and the restoration of the Davidic monarchy, but also the return of all of the exiles of Israel to the Promised Land, the restoration of proper Temple worship and a just priesthood, and most especially a commitment on the part of Israel to obey God’s Torah.

While one’s review of the Messianic claims of Yeshua of Nazareth, necessarily require an examination of the Tanach Scriptures and Apostolic Writings—various strata of extra-Biblical literature play some role in us considering various expectations present among Second Temple Jews. Pulling a number of themes from Isaiah 11; Ezekiel 34; and Psalm 2; and communicating in a style not unlike Psalm 89, the First Century B.C.E. Psalms of Solomon 17:21-25 witnesses the Son of David purging Jerusalem and destroying the God-less:

“See, Lord, and raise up for them their king, the son of David, to rule over your servant Israel in the time known to you, O God. Undergird him with the strength to destroy the unrighteous rulers, to purge Jerusalem from gentiles who trample her to destruction; in wisdom and in righteousness to drive out the sinners from the inheritance; to smash the arrogance of sinners like a potter’s jar; to shatter all their substance with an iron rod; to destroy the unlawful nations with the word of his mouth; at his warning the nations will flee from his presence; and he will condemn sinners by the thoughts of their hearts” (Psalms of Solomon 17:21-25).[2]

Likely appropriating themes from Zechariah 3, it is witnessed in the Dead Sea Scrolls that the Qumran community believed itself to be an established enclave “until there come the Prophet and the Messiahs of Aaron and Israel” (1QS 9.11).[3] The Messiah of Israel is approached as being a priestly type of figure, as seen in the expectation, “The procedure for the [mee]ting of the men of reputation [when they are called] to the banquet held by the society of the Yahad, when [God] has fa[th]ered (?) the Messiah (or when the Messiah has been revealed) among them: [the Priest,] as head of the entire congregation of Israel, shall enter first” (1QSa 2.11-12).[4] That the Messiah would be a priestly king is witnessed in additional remarks witnessed in the DSS:

“This is the rule for those who live in camps, who live by these rules in the era of wickedness, until the appearance of the Messiah of Aaron” (CD 12.23).[5]

“And this is the exposition of the regulations by which [they shall be governed in the age of wickedness until the appearance of the Messi]ah of Aaron and of Israel” (CD 14.19).[6]

“they will escape in the time of punishment, but all the rest will be handed over to the sword when the Messiah of Aaron and of Israel comes” (CD 19.10).[7]

“the Beloved Teacher dies until the Messiah from Aaron and from Israel appears” (CD 20.1).[8]

That the Messiah was anticipated to be some kind of a priestly king, a merging of the vocations of Levi and Judah, is also seen in statements made throughout the Pseudepigrapha:

“When vengeance will have come upon them from the Lord, the priesthood will lapse. And then the Lord will raise up a new priest to whom all the words of the Lord will be revealed. He shall effect the judgment of truth over the earth for many days. And his star shall rise in heaven like a king; kindling the light of knowledge as day is illumined by the sun. And he shall be extolled by the whole inhabited world. This one will shine forth like the sun in the earth; he shall take away all darkness from under heaven, and there shall be peace in all the earth. The heavens shall greatly rejoice in his days and the earth shall be glad; the clouds will be filled with joy and the knowledge of the Lord will be poured out on the earth like the water of the seas. And the angels of glory of the Lord’s presence will be made glad by him. The heavens will be opened, and from the temple of glory sanctification will come upon him, with a fatherly voice, as from Abraham to Isaac. And the glory of the Most High shall burst forth upon him. And the spirit of understanding and sanctification shall rest upon him [in the water]. For he shall give the majesty of the Lord to those who are his sons in truth forever. And there shall be no successor for him from generation to generation forever. And in his priesthood the nations shall be multiplied in knowledge on the earth, and they shall be illumined by the grace of the Lord, but Israel shall be diminished by her ignorance and darkened by her grief. In his priesthood sin shall cease and lawless men shall find rest in him. And he shall open the gates of paradise; he shall remove the sword that has threatened since Adam, and he will grant to the saints to eat of the tree of life. The spirit of holiness shall be upon them. And Beliar shall be bound by him. And he shall grant to his children the authority to trample on wicked spirits. And the Lord will rejoice in his children; he will be well pleased by his beloved ones forever. Then Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob will rejoice, and I shall be glad, and all the saints shall be clothed in righteousness” (Testament of Levi 18).[9]

“To me God has given the kingship and to him, the priesthood; and he has subjected the kingship to the priesthood. To me he gave earthly matters and to Levi, heavenly matters. As heaven is superior to the earth, so is God’s priesthood superior to the kingdom on earth, unless through sin it falls away from the Lord and is dominated by the earthly kingdom. For the Lord chose him over you to draw near to him, to eat at his table to present as offerings the costly things of the sons of Israel….And after this there shall arise for you a Star from Jacob in peace: And a man shall arise from my posterity like the Sun of righteousness, walking with the sons of men in gentleness and righteousness, and in him will be found no sin. And the heavens will be opened upon him to pour out the spirit as a blessing of the Holy Father. And he will pour the spirit of grace on you. And you shall be as sons in truth, and you will walk in his first and final decrees. This is the Shoot of God Most High; this is the foundation for the life of all humanity. Then he will illumine the scepter of my kingdom, and from your root will arise the Shoot, and through it will arise the rod of righteousness for the nations, to judge and to save all that call on the Lord” (Testament of Judah 21:2-5; 24).[10]

“And a spirit of prophecy came down upon his mouth. And he took Levi in his right hand and Judah in his left hand. And he turned to Levi first and he began to bless him first, and he said to him, ‘May the God of all, i.e. the LORD of all ages, bless you and your sons in all ages. May the LORD give you and your seed very great honor. May he draw you and your seed near to him from all flesh to serve in his sanctuary as the angels of the presence and the holy ones. May your sons’ seed be like them with respect to honor and greatness and sanctification. And may he make them great in every age. And they will become judges and rulers and leaders for all of the seed of the sons of Jacob. The word of the LORD they will speak righteously, and all of his judgments they will execute righteously. And they will tell my ways to Jacob, and my paths to Israel. The blessing of the LORD shall be placed in their mouth, so that they might bless all of the seed of the beloved. (As for) you, your mother has named you ‘Levi,’ and truly she has named you. You will be joined to the LORD and be the companion of all the sons of Jacob. His table will belong to you, and you and your sons will eat (from) it, and in all generations your table will be full, and your food will not be lacking in any age. And all who hate you will fall before you, and all your enemies will be uprooted and perish, and whoever blesses you will be blessed, and any nation which curses you will be cursed.’ And to Judah he said: ‘May the LORD give you might and strength to tread upon all who hate you. Be a prince, you and one of your sons for the sons of Jacob; may your name and the name of your son be one which travels and goes about in all the lands and cities. Then may the nations fear before your face, and all of the nations tremble, [and every nation trembles]. And with you will be the help of Jacob and with you will be found the salvation of Israel. And on the day when you sit on your righteous throne of honor, there will be great peace for all the seed of the beloved’s sons. Whoever blesses you will be blessed, and all who hate you and afflict you and curse you will be uprooted and destroyed from the earth and they shall be cursed’” (Jubilees 31:12-20).[11]

Noting a number of Tanach passages (Deuteronomy 5:28-29; 18:18-19; Numbers 24:15-17; Deuteronomy 33:8-11; Joshua 6:26), the DSS also catalogue some of the priestly expectations of the Messiah (4Q175).[12]

While a controversial text to be certain, that some Messianic ideas are present in the Book of 1 Enoch is unavoidable. Perhaps with some allusions intended to Psalm 2; the Son of Man in Daniel 7:13; and even the Servant of Isaiah 49; 52:13-53:12, the Messiah is depicted as a transcendent Heavenly figure:

“In those days, the kings of the earth and the mighty landowners shall be humiliated on account of the deeds of their hands. Therefore, on the day of their misery and weariness, they will not be able to save themselves. I shall deliver them into the hands of the my elect ones like grass in the fire and like lead in the water, so they shall burn before the face of the holy ones and sink before their sight, and no place will be found for them. On the day of their weariness, there shall be an obstacle on the earth and they shall fall on their faces; and they shall not rise up (again), nor anyone (be found) who will take them with his hands and raise them up. For they have denied the Lord of the Spirits and his Messiah. Blessed be the name of the Lord of the Spirits….For his might is in all the mysteries of righteousness, and oppression will vanish like a shadow having no foundations. The Elect One stands before the Lord of the Spirits; his glory is forever and ever and his power is unto all generations. In him dwells the spirit of wisdom, the spirit which gives thoughtfulness, the spirit of knowledge and strength, and the spirit of those who have fallen asleep in righteousness….And he said to me, ‘All these things which you have seen happen by the authority of his Messiah so that he may give orders and be praised upon the earth’” (1 Enoch 48:8-10; 49:2-3; 52:4).[13]

Ideas of a Messianic figure functioning in roles of king, priest, prophet, and being exalted in Heaven, are witnessed across a broad selection of excerpts from Second Temple Jewish literature. And, there are doubtlessly other avenues or contours of Messianic expectation, to be considered and explored, as well. When Yeshua of Nazareth entered in on the scene in the First Century, in the world of Second Temple Judaism, there were various expectations—some more refined than others—of what the Messiah was likely going to do. While Jewish anti-missionaries will be seen to frequently dismiss the Messianic claims of Yeshua of Nazareth, they are also likely to be seen doing so without any engagement with some of the expectations of the broad time period in which He actually lived—and instead are more concerned with post-First Century C.E. diatribes and debates between the Jewish Synagogue and institutional Christian Church.

The Messianic Expectation from the Tanach

When considering the Messiahship of Yeshua of Nazareth, many people automatically assume that there are simply lists and collections of predictive prophecies in the Tanach (Old Testament) which were then fulfilled in His life and activities. It is to be properly recognized how there are various predictive prophecies in the Tanach, which are afforded fulfillment in the Apostolic Writings. Yet it is also clear that there are some passages in the Tanach, specifically ascribed to Yeshua of Nazareth, where a singular figure was not the original subject. And, there are also various Tanach passages applied to Yeshua, which raise some questions about authorial intent, among other things. While many laypersons do find themselves caught off guard by Tanach ascriptions to Yeshua of Nazareth, theologians and commentators have certainly proposed various solutions to the challenges and difficulties presented. In his 1995 resource The Messiah in the Old Testament, Walter C. Kaiser offers three significant categories for readers approaching Tanach prophecy:

  1. Direct prophecies are those in which the OT author looked directly at the messianic age, and his readers understood it as a prophecy about the Messiah.”[14] Referenced as direct prophecies of the coming Messiah are Micah 5:1: “And you, O Bethlehem of Ephrath, last among the clans of Judah, from you one shall come forth to rule Israel for Me – one whose origin is from of old, from ancient times” (NJPS; cf. Matthew 2:6). Malachi 3:1: “Behold, I am sending My messenger to clear the way before Me…” (NJPS; cf. Mark 1:2; Matthew 11:10; Luke 7:27). Zechariah 9:9: “Rejoice greatly, fair Zion; raise a shout, fair Jerusalem! Lo, your king is coming to you. He is victorious, triumphant, yet humble, riding on an ass, on a donkey foaled by a she-ass” (NJPS; cf. Matthew 21:5; John 12:15).
  2. Typical prophecies are different from direct prophecies in that their immediately referent in their own day was separated from that to which their ultimate referent pointed, though they were joined as one single meaning in that they shared at least one thing in common, which was at the heart of the prediction. In this category we have persons, institutions, or events that were divinely designated in the OT text to be models, previews, or pictures of something that was to come in the days of Messiah.”[15] The Torah direction regarding the construction of the Tabernacle is noted: “And let them make Me a sanctuary that I may dwell among them. Exactly as I show you – the pattern of the Tabernacle and the pattern of all its furnishings – so shall you make it…Note well, and follow the patterns for them that are being shown you on the mountain” (Exodus 25:8-9, 40, NJPS). Since there was a Heavenly original for the Earthly implements, in dealing with various Messianic prophecies, so was there some kind of precedent in the Biblical record which found its ultimate fulfillment in the activities of Yeshua of Nazareth.
  3. “The third type of prophecies quoted in the NT are applications. Here the language of the OT text is used or appropriated, but no specific prediction was intended by the OT or claimed by the NT writer.”[16] Matthew 2:23 is offered as an example of this: “and came and dwelt in a city called Nazareth, that what was spoken through the prophets might be fulfilled, ‘He shall be called a Nazarene’” (PME). Noted is the word of Isaiah 11:1 and the Hebrew netzer for “branch” (RSV/NRSV/ESV, NASU, NIV) or “twig” (NJPS): “A staff will emerge from the stump of Jesse and a shoot [netzer] will sprout from his roots” (ATS). Literary devices of some sort have been employed to posit Messianic fulfillment in the life of Yeshua.

Most of today’s evangelical theologians and pastors—and by extension a wide number of Messianic congregational leaders and teachers—have been trained to read and interpret the Scriptures using the common historical-grammatical approach. Such a method follows the major premise of reading a Bible passage for what it meant to its original audience first, before deducing modern principles. Our ultimate appeal cannot be to English translations, but instead to the Hebrew and Greek source text. Investigation and consideration for some historical or cultural background, perhaps from some bodies of extra-Biblical literature or material, may be conducted. For many Tanach passages that are Messianic in nature, employing common historical-grammatical approaches, is entirely sufficient. However, it is clear enough that the fulfillment of various Tanach expectations can require some multi-dimensional thinking, particularly in terms if whether a previous figure or event in Ancient Israel represented something which would be witnessed later in the activities of Yeshua of Nazareth. This is where trying to not only enter into the reasoning processes of various Biblical authors is necessary, but also some consultation with Second Temple Jewish hermeneutics.

In a great deal of the anti-missionary materials that one will encounter, it will be frequently witnessed that the Messiahship of Yeshua of Nazareth is dismissed almost entirely on the basis of Him not accomplishing direct prophecies. Almost all appeals to the Tanach of Him embodying in His actions, things once witnessed in the lives of important figures such as Moses or David, or the corporate experience of the people of Israel, do not tend to be too widely considered. Still, it is to be appreciated that an author like David Klinghoffer has to admit, “it might be objected that while the Gospels’ interpretations of these verses may be highly imaginative—or, to put it another way, highly strained—rabbinic exegesis is no less so…[W]hy would first-century believers in rabbinic Judaism reject Matthew’s or John’s understanding of the prophecies in question, subjecting them to a higher level of scrutiny than was applied to the teachings of the rabbis?”[17] Klinghoffer hardly agrees with the conclusions of the Apostolic Writings, but he at least acknowledges that some of its methodology is not at all irregular to Second Temple Judaism and the time thereafter.

While predictive prophecies from the Tanach, and various other typologies, may tend to garner a sufficient amount of our attention in reviewing the Messiahship of Yeshua—having a wider view of the history and narratives of the Tanach is also most imperative. In his 1992 book, Knowing Jesus Through the Old Testament, Christopher J.H. Wright indicates the significance of “working back from actual events which happened in the…life of Jesus to certain Hebrew scriptures in which [one] now sees a deeper significance than they could have had before.”[18] Sometimes today’s Messianic community is not as adequately prepared as it thinks it is, in terms of understanding the Tanach Scriptures—as our studies tend to be focused more on the weekly Torah portions than anything else. Wright properly responds to the common evangelical dilemma of only looking at the Tanach as a collection of prophecy predictions about the Messiah. He observes, “the Old Testament is much more than a promise box full of blessed predictions about Jesus. It is primarily a story—the story of the acts of God in human history out of which those promises arose and in relation to which only they make sense.”[19]

All of us, in our wanting to see the Messiahship of Yeshua properly defended, need to do more than love Him; we also need to be able to love the Scriptures which speak of Him and to His work, and inform us as to His worldview and values. For some who have either dismissed the possibility of Yeshua as Messiah, or worse, once expressed belief in Him—their denial may have taken place because Believers have not engaged sufficiently with the Tanach Scriptures on a whole panoply of issues directly and indirectly related to His Messiahship.

Tanach Prophecies Fulfilled by, or Involving, Yeshua of Nazareth

The First Century followers of Yeshua of Nazareth, whether it be those who encountered Him in person firsthand, encountered those who encountered Him firsthand, or simply heard enough about Him and saw supernatural actions performed in His name or authority—knew that they had to turn to the Tanach, the Scriptures of Israel, for confirmation regarding who He was. Was Yeshua the Messiah of Israel? While one’s investigation of the Scriptures, for confirmation that Yeshua of Nazareth is the anticipated Messiah of Israel, can seemingly be endless—there is, nevertheless, a significant category of references to be recognized as significant, in order for a Bible reader to begin his or her investigation into the Messiahship of Yeshua.[20]

Genesis 3:15: The seed of the woman would crush the head of the serpent

After Adam and Eve eat the forbidden fruit, it is decreed that the seed, a descendant, of the woman, would crush the head of the serpent, Satan (Genesis 3:15). Yeshua was born of a woman (Galatians 4:4), and was sent to destroy Satan’s works (1 John 3:4).

Genesis 12:3: The seed of Abraham

The seed or posterity of Abraham was to bless all families of Planet Earth (Genesis 12:3). Yeshua the Messiah, and the redemption He provides, is to be recognized as the major fulfillment of this promise (Matthew 1:1; Acts 3:25; Galatians 3:16).

Genesis 17:19; 21:12: The seed of Isaac

Abraham was explicitly told by God that his son Isaac would be the child of promise (Genesis 17:19; 21:12; cf. Hebrews 11:17-19). Yeshua of Nazareth is a descendant of Isaac (Matthew 1:2; Luke 3:34).

Genesis 38:14; Numbers 24:17, 19: The seed of Jacob who will have dominion

Jacob was told by God that by his seed the families of Planet Earth would be blessed (Genesis 38:14). Balaam decreed that a star would come forth from Jacob (Numbers 24:17) who would have dominion (Numbers 24:19). Yeshua of Nazareth is a descendant of Jacob (Matthew 1:2; Luke 3:34), and is “the bright morning star” (Revelation 22:16).

2 Samuel 7:12-13; Isaiah 9:7; 11:1-5; Jeremiah 23:5: A descendant of Judah

The Prophet Nathan told David that a great descendant would come forth from him, whose throne would be established forever (2 Samuel 7:12-13). The Prophet Isaiah foretold of a righteous King who would have an everlasting government of peace (Isaiah 9:7), this King would come from Jesse and would judge the world in righteousness (Isaiah 11:1-5). The Prophet Jeremiah also decreed of a righteous Branch which would come from David, acting wisely and justly (Jeremiah 23:5).

Micah 5:2: Have Eternal Origins

The Prophet Micah decreed that the Messiah would have origins “from the days of eternity” (Micah 5:2, TLV). The Apostolic Writings all affirm that Yeshua had origins from outside this universe, at least implying some unique supernatural nature (John 1:1, 14; 8:58; Ephesians 1:3-4; Colossians 1:15-19; Revelation 1:8).

Psalm 2:7; Proverbs 30:4: The Son of God

Psalm 2:7 speaks of God’s anointed, “You are My Son, today I have begotten You” (NASU), with Proverbs 30:4 raising the question, “Who has ascended into heaven and descended? Who has gathered the wind in His fists? Who has wrapped the waters in His garment? Who has established all the ends of the earth? What is His name or His son’s name? Surely you know!” (NASU). Yeshua of Nazareth is regarded as God’s beloved Son (Matthew 3:17), the Son of the Most High (Luke 1:32).

Isaiah 9:6-7; Jeremiah 23:5-6: Bear the Name of God

The Prophet Isaiah decreed of the Messiah, that “His Name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God My Father of Eternity, Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6, TLV). The Prophet Jeremiah foretold that the Messiah’s name would be “The Lord our righteousness” (Jeremiah 23:6, NASU). And the exclamation of Philippians 2:9-11 is that at the name of Yeshua every knee will bow and confess that He is Lord (YHWH).

Daniel 9:24-26: Come 483 years after the rebuilding of Jerusalem’s wall

The Prophet Daniel foretold that “from the issuing of a decree to restore and rebuild Jerusalem until Messiah the Prince there will be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks” (Daniel 9:25, NASU). 483 years after the rebuilding of the wall of Jerusalem, the Messiah arrived on the scene (Matthew 2:1, 16, 19; Luke 3:1, 23).

Isaiah 7:14: Born of a virgin

The Prophet Isaiah foretold of how “ADONAI Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin will conceive” (Isaiah 7:14, TLV). The Hebrew almah was rendered in the Greek Septuagint as parthenos or “virgin.” This word is applied to the miraculous birth of Yeshua (Matthew 1:18-2:1; Luke 1:26-35).

Micah 5:2: Born in Bethlehem

The Prophet Micah spoke, “But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah—least among the clans of Judah—from you will come out to Me One to be ruler in Israel” (Micah 5:2, TLV). Yeshua was born in Bethlehem (Matthew 1:18-2:1; Luke 1:26-35).

Psalm 72:10-11: Adored by the great

The Messiah is to be honored by both kings and nations (Psalm 72:10-11). Magi from the East came to worship the child Yeshua (Matthew 2:1-11).

Isaiah 40:3-5; Malachi 3:1: Preceded by a voice crying in the wilderness

Isaiah foretells of a voice crying in the wilderness, preceding the Messiah (Isaiah 40:3-5), and Malachi spoke of a messenger coming before the Lord (Malachi 3:1). These prophecies are applied to the unique figure of John the Immerser/Baptist (Matthew 3:1-3; Luke 1:17; 3:2-6), who announced the arrival of Yeshua.

Isaiah 11:2; 61:1; Psalm 45:7: Anointed with the Spirit of God

The Messiah was to be anointed and empowered with the Spirit of God in a very unique and significant way (Isaiah 11:2; 61:1; Psalm 45:7). Yeshua is noted as having the Spirit rest on Him at His immersion by John (Matthew 3:16); Yeshua is One who speaks the words of God because of the Spirit (John 3:34); Yeshua performed good works precisely because of the Spirit (Acts 10:38).

Deuteronomy 18:15, 18: A prophet like Moses

Moses told the Ancient Israelites that a prophet like him could arise in the future, and that the people were to heed anything that such a prophet would tell them, or face disastrous consequences (Deuteronomy 18:15, 18). The ultimate example of such a prophet is considered to be Yeshua the Messiah (Acts 3:20-22), as heeding or not heeding His words have eternal repercussions.

Isaiah 61:1-2: Possess a ministry promoting human wholeness

The Messiah’s ministry will involve a significant proclamation of human wholeness to those who are oppressed: “To bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to captives and freedom to prisoners” (Isaiah 61:1, NASU). Yeshua specifically applied this word to Himself, at His home synagogue in Nazareth (Luke 4:18-19).

Isaiah 35:5-6; 42:18: Possess a healing ministry

Isaiah spoke of how the restoration of Zion would involve various physical acts of healing (Isaiah 35:5-6; 42:18). Certainly, healing is a significant feature of the actions of Yeshua (i.e., Matthew 11:5).

Isaiah 9:1-2: Minister in the Galilee

The Prophet Isaiah spoke of how “He will bring glory—by the way of the sea, beyond the Jordan—Galilee of the Gentiles” (Isaiah 9:1, TLV). The Messiah’s ministry would involve how “The people walking in darkness will see a great light. Upon those dwelling in the land of the shadow of death, light will shine” (Isaiah 9:2, TLV). This prophetic word is specifically applied to Yeshua (Matthew 4:12-16).

Isaiah 40:11; 42:3: Tender and Compassionate

The Prophet Isaiah said, “Like a shepherd, He tends His flock. He gathers the lambs in His arms carries them in his bosom, and gently guides nursing ewes” (Isaiah 40:11, TLV). Justice will be fairly implemented (Isaiah 42:3). Yeshua was tactful in His ministry (Matthew 12:15, 20), and He participated in the human experience, being able to identify with the struggles of men and women (Hebrews 4:15).

Isaiah 42:2: Meekness

The Prophet Isaiah decreed of the Servant, “He will not cry out or raise His voice, nor make His voice heard in the street” (Isaiah 42:2, NASU). Yeshua issued instructions for His presence to not be widely known, even after performing miracles (Matthew 12:15-16, 19).

Isaiah 53:9: Sinless and Guileless

The Prophet Isaiah said, “His grave was assigned with wicked men, yet He was with a rich man in His death, because He had done no violence, nor was there any deceit in His mouth” (Isaiah 53:9, NASU). 1 Peter 2:22 applies this word to the activity of Yeshua.

Isaiah 53:11-12; Psalm 69:9: Bear what is due to others

The Prophet Isaiah foretold that the Servant will bear the transgressions and sin of many (Isaiah 53:11-12), echoed by Psalm 69:9. In Romans 15:3 Paul attests to how Yeshua was not concerned with pleasing Himself, but instead how the reproaches of others fell on Him.

Psalm 110:4: Serve in a priestly capacity

Psalm 110:4 speaks of God’s anointed serving in a priestly capacity like Melchizedek. Throughout the Epistle to the Hebrews, Yeshua being the ultimate high priest, like the example of Melchizedek, is emphasized (Hebrews 5:5-6; 6:20; 7:15-17).

Zechariah 9:9: Enter into Jerusalem on a donkey

The Prophet Zechariah foretold, “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! 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” (Zechariah 9:9, NASU). This word is applied to how Yeshua entered into Jerusalem, in the days before His execution (Matthew 21:1-11; Mark 11:1-11).

Malachi 3:1: Enter into the Temple with authority

Malachi 3:1 says that God’s messenger “will suddenly come to His temple” (NASU). It can certainly be said that when Yeshua entered into the Temple complex, He disrupted the normal flow of activities (Matthew 21:12-24:1; Luke 2:27-38, 45-50; John 2:13-22).

Isaiah 49:7; Psalm 69:4: Be hated without a cause

Isaiah 49:7 speaks of “the One the nation abhors” (TLV). The prayer of David in Psalm 69:4 is, “Those who hate me without a cause outnumber the hairs of my head. Powerful are my enemies who would destroy me with lies” (TLV). Yeshua was unjustly hated (John 15:24-25).

Isaiah 53:2-3; 63:3, 5; Psalm 69:9(8): Rejected by His Own People

The Messiah was to be a figure largely rejected. “He was despised and rejected by others; a man of suffering and acquainted with infirmity; and as one from whom others hide their faces he was despised, and we held him of no account” (Isaiah 53:3, NRSV). Isaiah also decreed, “I have trodden the wine trough alone, and from the peoples there was no man with Me. I also trod them in My anger and trampled them in My wrath” (Isaiah 63:3, NASU). Frequently in the Gospels, Yeshua of Nazareth is dismissed as a nobody (Mark 6:3; John 7:3-5), and He has to find His own way (Luke 9:58). It is explicitly reported that His own Jewish people largely did not receive Him (John 1:11).

Psalm 118:22: Rejected by the Jewish Leadership

It was anticipated in Psalm 118:22, “The stone the builders rejected has become the capstone” (TLV). Yeshua applies this word to Himself, in how He is rejected by various Jewish religious leaders (Matthew 21:42; cf. John 7:48).

Psalm 2:1-2: Plotted Against by Jews and Pagans

Psalm 2:1-2 speaks of a conspiracy against the Lord and His Anointed from the nations of Planet Earth: “Why do nations assemble, and peoples plot vain things; kings of the earth take their stand, and regents intrigue together against the Lord and against His anointed?” (NJPS). This word is specifically applied to the death of Yeshua, enacted by a conspiracy of both the Romans and Jewish religious leaders.

Psalm 41:10(9); 55:13-15(12-14): Betrayed by a Friend

King David cried to the Lord, “Even my close friend in whom I trusted, who ate my bread, has lifted up his heel against me” (Psalm 41:9, NASU). Yeshua was betrayed to the Romans by Judas Iscariot (Matthew 26:21-25, 47-50; Acts 1:16-18), with the tenor of David’s word invoked (John 13:18-21).

Zechariah 11:12: Be Sold for Thirty Pieces of Silver

Zechariah 11:12 says, “Then I said to them, ‘If it seems good to you, pay me my wages, but if not, don’t bother!’ So they weighed out my wages—30 pieces of silver” (TLV). Judas Iscariot betrayed Yeshua for thirty pieces of silver (Matthew 26:15).

Zechariah 11:13: Betrayal Price Thrown into Temple Treasury

The price paid in Zechariah 11:12 is thrown into the Temple treasury: “Then ADONAI said to me, ‘Throw it to the potter—that exorbitant price at which they valued Me!’ So I took the 30 pieces of silver and threw them into the House of ADONAI, to the potter” (Zechariah 11:13, TLV). This is applied to what Judas did with the betrayal price that he received (Matthew 27:6-7).

Zechariah 13:7: Be Forsaken by His Own Disciples

Zechariah 13:7 declares, “‘Awake, O sword, against My Shepherd, and against the man, My Associate,’ declares the Lord of hosts. ‘Strike the Shepherd that the sheep may be scattered; and I will turn My hand against the little ones’” (NASU). This word is applied to how subsequent to the arrest of Yeshua by the Romans, His Disciples scattered themselves (Matthew 26:31, 56).

Micah 4:14(5:1): Be Struck on the Cheek

Micah 5:1 says, “Now gather yourself in troops, O Daughter of Troops. He has laid siege against us. With a staff they have struck the Judge of Israel on the cheek” (TLV). Yeshua was unjustly beaten by the Romans, and mocked, as though He were a humiliated leader of Israel (Matthew 27:30).

Isaiah 50:6: Be Spat On

The Prophet Isaiah declared of the Servant, “I gave My back to those who strike Me, and My cheeks to those who pluck out the beard; I did not cover My face from humiliation and spitting” (NASU). Yeshua was beaten and spat on by both the Jewish religious leaders (Matthew 26:67) and Roman soldiers (Matthew 27:30).

Psalm 22:8-9(7-8): Be Mocked

King David exclaimed, “‘Commit yourself to the LORD; let Him deliver him; let Him rescue him, because He delights in him’” (Psalm 22:8, NASU). While Yeshua is surely mocked before His execution (Matthew 26:67-68; 27:31), this word is specifically echoed by the religious leaders as He is dying (Matthew 27:39-44).

Isaiah 50:6: Be Beaten

The Prophet Isaiah foretold of the Servant, “I gave My back to those who strike, and My cheeks to those pulling out My beard; I did not hide My face from humiliation and spitting” (Isaiah 50:6, TLV). Yeshua was thoroughly beaten before His execution (Matthew 26:67; 27:26, 30).

Psalm 22:16(15); Zechariah 12:10: Hands and Feet Pierced

Taking into consideration the textual witnesses of the Septuagint and other Hebrew manuscripts, Psalm 22:15 decrees, “For dogs have surrounded me. A band of evildoers has closed in on me. They pierced my hands and my feet” (Psalm 22:16, TLV). Zechariah 12:10 further states, “Then I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and supplication, when they will look toward Me whom they pierced. They will mourn for him as one mourns for an only son and grieve bitterly for him, as one grieves for a firstborn” (TLV). These words are applied to the execution of Yeshua, being crucified by the Romans (Matthew 27:35; Luke 24:39; John 19:18, 34-37; 20:20-28; cf. Revelation 1:7).

Psalm 22:16(15): Thirsty During His Execution

King David said, “my vigor dries up like a shard; my tongue cleaves to my palate; You commit me to the dust of death” (Psalm 22:16, NJPS). During the execution of Yeshua, He experienced great thirst (John 19:28).

Psalm 69:22(21): Given Vinegar to Quench Thirst

King David said, “They give me gall for food, vinegar to quench my thirst” (Psalm 69:22, NJPS). During the execution of Yeshua, He was given vinegar to quench His thirst (Matthew 27:34).

Exodus 12:46; Psalm 34:21(20): Be Executed Without a Broken Bone

The Passover lamb was to be eaten without any broken bones (Exodus 12:46), and it is said of the righteous, “He {the Lord} keeps all his bones, not one of them is broken” (Psalm 34:20, NASU). When Yeshua was executed, not a single bone of His body was broken (John 19:33-36).

Isaiah 53:12: Be Considered a Transgressor

Isaiah 53:12 says of the Servant that He will be regarded as a transgressor: “I will allot Him a portion with the great, and He will divide the booty with the strong; because He poured out Himself to death, and was numbered with the transgressors; yet He Himself bore the sin of many, and interceded for the transgressors” (NASU). Yeshua was executed right alongside of known criminals (Luke 23:32).

Daniel 9:24-26: Be “cut off and have nothing…”

Speaking of the rebuilding of Jerusalem, Daniel prophesied, “it will be built again, with plaza and moat, even in times of distress. Then after the sixty-two weeks the Messiah will be cut off and have nothing” (Daniel 9:24b-25a, NASU). Yeshua of Nazareth was cut off after sixty-nine weeks (Daniel 9:24a) via His death (Romans 5:6; 1 Peter 3:18).

Isaiah 53:5-7, 12: Death Would Atone for Sins of Humanity

Isaiah spoke of how the iniquities of all would fall upon the Servant (Isaiah 53:5-7, 12). The death of Yeshua is portrayed in the Apostolic Writings as affecting the entire human race (Mark 10:45; John 1:29; 3:16; Acts 8:30-35).

Isaiah 53:9: Be Buried With the Rich

Isaiah 53:9 speaks of how “His grave was assigned with wicked men, yet He was with a rich man in His death, because He had done no violence, nor was there any deceit in His mouth” (NASU). Yeshua was interred in the tomb intended for Joseph of Arimathea (Matthew 27:57-60).

Isaiah 53:9-10; Psalm 2:7-8; 16:10: Be Raised From the Dead

Isaiah 53:10 foretold, “He will see His offspring, He will prolong His days, and the good pleasure of the LORD will prosper in His hand” (NASU). Psalm 2:8 states, “I will surely give the nations as Your inheritance, and the very ends of the earth as Your possession” (NASU). Psalm 16:10 explicitly remarks, though, “For You will not abandon my soul to Sheol; nor will You allow Your Holy One to undergo decay” (NASU). These words have all been applied to the resurrection of Yeshua from the dead (Matthew 28:1-20; Acts 2:23-36; 13:33-37; 1 Corinthians 15:4-6).

Psalm 16:11; 68:19(18); 110:1: Ascend to Right Hand of God

The right hand of God is a place of blessing and honor (Psalm 16:11), as is ascending into God’s presence (Psalm 68:19). Psalm 110:1 explicitly states, “The LORD says to my Lord: ‘Sit at My right hand Until I make Your enemies a footstool for Your feet’” (NASU). Yeshua ascended into Heaven (Luke 24:51; Acts 1:9-11), at the right hand of God (Acts 7:55; Hebrews 1:3).

Zechariah 6:13: Exercise Priestly Office in Heaven

Zechariah 6:13 explains, “He will build the Temple of ADONAI. He will bear splendor and sit and rule on His throne. Thus He will be a kohen [priest] on His throne. So a counsel of shalom will be between them both” (TLV). Romans 8:34 speaks of how “the Messiah Yeshua, who died and—more than that—has been raised, is at the right hand of God and is actually pleading on our behalf!” (CJB). Hebrews 7:25-8:2 explicitly goes into detail regarding the priestly ministry of Yeshua in the Heavenly Temple.

Isaiah 28:16; Psalm 118:22-23: Be the Cornerstone

Isaiah 28:16 declares, “Therefore thus says the Lord GOD, ‘Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a tested stone, a costly cornerstone for the foundation, firmly placed. He who believes in it will not be disturbed’” (NASU). Psalm 118:22-23 further states, “The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief corner stone. This is the Lord’s doing; it is marvelous in our eyes” (NASU). Yeshua is explicitly noted to be the Cornerstone (Ephesians 2:20), widely rejected by the Jewish religious leaders (Matthew 21:42; 1 Peter 2:5-7).

Isaiah 11:10; 42:1: Be Sought After by the Jewish People and the Nations

Isaiah 11:10 decrees, “Then in that day the nations will resort to the root of Jesse, who will stand as a signal for the peoples; and His resting place will be glorious” (NASU). Isaiah 42:1 also states, “Behold, My Servant, whom I uphold; My chosen one in whom My soul delights. I have put My Spirit upon Him; He will bring forth justice to the nations” (NASU). The arrival of the Messiah will have an affect not only on Israel, but also the world at large (Acts 10:45-46; 13:46-48).

Isaiah 11:10; 42:1-4; 49:1-6: Be Accepted by the Nations

Isaiah 11:10 and 42:1-4 indicate that the Servant will be accepted by the peoples of Planet Earth. Isaiah 49:6 further states how the restoration of Israel’s Kingdom and the salvation of the Earth are tied together: “It is too small a thing that You should be My Servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob and to restore the preserved ones of Israel; I will also make You a light of the nations so that My salvation may reach to the end of the earth” (NASU). Yeshua is represented as having a ministry that affected more than just His fellow Jews (Matthew 12:18-21; cf. Romans 9:30; 20:20; 11:11; 15:10).

Psalm 2:6: Be the King

Psalm 2:6 exclaims, “But as for Me, I have installed My King upon Zion, My holy mountain” (NASU). Yeshua, however, attested before Pontius Pilate that His Kingdom was not a worldly realm (John 18:33-37).

Zechariah 12:10; Psalm 22:17(16): Be Seen by Israel as Pierced

Factoring in the different witnesses of the Septuagint and other Hebrew fragments, the Messiah’s being pierced at His execution would have a reverberating effect to His own Jewish people (Luke 24:39; John 19:34-37; Revelation 1:7).

Patiently Waiting for the Restoration of Israel

Having a good handle on an entire series of Bible passages from the Tanach (OT), which in some form or fashion have been applied to Yeshua of Nazareth, is very important when involving oneself in Jewish outreach and evangelism. Many who prepare to go out into the Jewish community, or even just talk to a Jewish friend or neighbor about Yeshua—will for the first time ever, as a result of such preparations, receive some significant level of confirmation that Yeshua truly is the anticipated Messiah of Israel. Indeed, the Bible passages that we have just summarized in this analysis, represent many of the key concepts and ideas that surround the work and activities of Yeshua of Nazareth. Each one of us has a responsibility to ourselves, and to our fellow brothers and sisters, to see that at some time in our faith experience, we know why we truly believe that Yeshua is the Messiah. And from that probing of God’s Word, we should then be able to hopefully better communicate such truths as we reach out with the Messianic movement’s definite mission of impacting the Jewish community with the good news!

One of the certain expectations of Yeshua as Messiah, was His widescale rejection by the Jewish religious leaders. Indeed, Isaiah 50:6 declared, “I gave My back to those who strike, and My cheeks to those pulling out My beard; I did not hide My face from humiliation and spitting” (TLV). When involving oneself in Jewish outreach and evangelism—in no small part due to Christian anti-Semitism from past centuries, but also today due in large part due to liberal, progressive Judaism—those who reach out with the good news of Israel’s Messiah to His Jewish people, are more likely going to be rejected than welcomed. While today’s Messianics, and especially Messianic Jewish congregational leaders, can all give testimonies to how debating various Tanach passages with Orthodox Jews did not turn out too successfully—more often than not your experience in reaching out with the good news is going to involve liberal Jews whose spiritual experiences with God are quite nominal. Today’s Messianic Believers, Jewish or non-Jewish, know more about the Holy Scriptures than most of today’s Jewish people in North America. To them, the Bible is a collection of interesting stories. So, should you be rejected, or dismissed, or just ignored by such people—know that a great deal of the dismissal of Yeshua you may witness, is more of a rejection of God.

It is vital that each one of us, in our investigations involving the Messiahship of Yeshua, not forget the very heart of Yeshua for the redemption of His Jewish people and the City of Jerusalem. As our Lord prayed fervently in Matthew 23:37-39, “Yerushalayim! Yerushalayim! You kill the prophets! You stone those who are sent to you! How often I wanted to gather your children, just as a hen gathers her chickens under her wings, but you refused! Look! God is abandoning your house to you, leaving it desolate. For I tell you, from now on, you will not see me again until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of Adonai’” (CJB). Circumstances within modern Israel and the Jewish community have to change so that people naturally are inclined to wish upon others, good tidings from the God of Israel. The only real way that this will happen, is for those who already know the God of Israel and His Son, Yeshua, to love those in the Jewish community who need Him. And, for those who should know the God of Israel to realize that they truly need Him.

Knowing that Yeshua of Nazareth is the Messiah of Israel certainly involves the necessary study of Holy Scripture, to confirm that He is the One anticipated to bring redemption to Israel and the world. Knowing that Yeshua of Nazareth is the Messiah of Israel also involves each of us diligently following Him, as those who have placed our trust in His work, and who have the confidence that He will return again. We each need to be patient as we experientially know Him, and represent Him not just to a world which needs His salvation and to heed His teachings and example—but most especially those of His very Jewish people!


[1] C.A. Evans, “Messianism,” in Craig A. Evans and Stanley E. Porter, eds., Dictionary of New Testament Background (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity, 2000), 699.

[2] R.B. Wright, trans., “Psalms of Solomon,” in James H. Charlesworth ed., The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha, Vol 2 (New York: Doubleday, 1985), 667.

[3] Michael Wise, Martin Abegg, Jr., and Edward Cook, trans., The Dead Sea Scrolls: A New Translation (San Francisco: HarperCollins, 1996), 139.

[4] Ibid., 147.

[5] Ibid., 70.

[6] Ibid., 72.

[7] Ibid., 58.

[8] Ibid., 59.

[9] H.C. Kee, trans., “Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs,” in James H. Charlesworth, ed., The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha, Vol 1 (New York: Doubleday, 1983), pp 794-795.

[10] Ibid., pp 800, 801.

[11] O.S. Wintermute, “Jubilees,” in James H. Charlesworth ed., The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha, Vol 2 (New York: Doubleday, 1985), pp 115-116.

[12] Wise, Abegg, and Cook, pp 230-231.

[13] E. Isaac, trans., “1 (Ethiopic Apocalypse) of Enoch,” in The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha, Vol 1, pp 35-36, 37.

[14] Walter C. Kaiser, The Messiah in the Old Testament (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1995), 33.

[15] Ibid., 34.

[16] Ibid., 35.

[17] David Klinghoffer, Why the Jews Rejected Jesus (New York: Three Leaves Press, 2005), 85.

[18] Christopher J.H. Wright, Knowing Jesus Through the Old Testament (Downers Grove, IL: IVP Academic, 1992), 27.

[19] Ibid.

[20] The list followed in this article has been provided generously by Barry Rubin, gen. ed., The Complete Jewish Study Bible (Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 2016), pp li-liv.