Jesus. Christos? Pt. 1
Unlike the Christian bible, the Hebrew bible does not focus that much on the personality of the Messiah, it’s main focus is on the Messianic Age, on what the world will be like, and how it will be transformed by the coming of the Messiah. There is, however, a prerequisite for being the Messiah.
What does Messiah mean?
The literal translation of the word משיח (messiah) is, “the anointed.” In the Scriptures we find two types of people who were anointed, and therefore called “messiah”;
- Aaron the Priest, and all his male descendants (Exodus 30:30; see Leviticus 4:3)
- Kings (1 Samuel 10:1, 16:13; see 2 Samuel 1:16).
King David refers to himself as “The Messiah” more times than any other biblical figure:
“Great salvation he brings to his king, and shows steadfast love to his anointed- to David and his offspring forever.” 2 Samuel 22:51
“The Lord is the strength of his people; he is the saving refuge of his anointed.” Psalms 28:8
“Now I know that the Lord saves his anointed; he will answer him from his holy heaven with the saving might of his right hand.” ibid 20:7
“For the sake of your servant David- do not turn away the face of your anointed one.” ibid 132:10
“There I will make a horn to sprout for David- I have prepared a lamp for my anointed.” ibid :17
What was so unique about David’s anointment that made him obsess over it? Wasn’t Saul anointed, too? Weren’t the priests anointed?
We all know the story of David. God was unhappy with Saul, so he sent Samuel to anoint the next king of Israel. Samuel anointed the shepherd-boy David. But David’s kingship was very different in nature than Saul’s kingship. In the word of God to the prophet Nathan:
“Now, therefore, thus you shall say to my servant David, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts, I took you from the pasture, from following the sheep, that you should be prince over my people Israel… I will make for you a great name, like the name of the great ones of the earth… Moreover, the Lord declares to you that the Lord will make you a house. When your days are fulfilled and you lie down with your fathers, I will raise up your offspring after you, who shall come from your body, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build a house for my name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. I will be to him a father, and he shall be to me a son. When he commits iniquity, I will discipline him with the rod of men, with the stripes of the sons of men, but my steadfast love will not depart from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I put away from before you. And your house and your kingdom shall be made sure forever before me.” 2 Samuel 7:8-16
From this prophecy we can learn many things:
- God chose David to be a king
- King David will have a son, who will build a House for God
- God will never replace that son’s kingship, like He had done to Saul. The son’s kingship will be established forever.
The “son” in discussion is Solomon, who indeed built the First Temple in Jerusalem, as the bible relates in great detail in 1 Kings chapters 5-10. We can therefore establish that anyone who will claim kingship on Israel must be a direct descendant father-to-son, of Solomon and (obviously, and more importantly), David. I say father-to-son, for that is the way tribal and all lineage works in the bible; the son of a Levite is a Levite, the son of a priest is a priest, the son of a Judean is a Judean. There is never an exception to this rule. In fact, all nineteen kings who sat on David’s throne, were direct father-to-son descendants to David. For good reason, it is the way God taught Moses to register the Jews:
“Take a census of all the congregation of the people of Israel, by clans, by fathers’ houses, according to the number of names, every male, head by head.” Numbers 1:2
When Samuel anointed David, he thereby also anointed the future kings of Israel who will claim their right for the monarchy by being direct descendants of David. The Messiah is not just a king who will fight and judge (Isaiah 11:3-4), he is the one who will rebuild the Davidic kingdom, he “The Anointed One” who finally restore David’s kingdom. He is therefore called by the name of his grandfather…
“My servant David shall be king over them, and they shall all have one shepherd. They shall walk in my rules and be careful to obey my statutes… and David my servant shall be their prince forever.” Ezekiel 37:24-25
Jesus the son of…
If you open the book of Matthew and just read chapter 1, than Jesus lineage is very fitting for a future king of the Jews:
“The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham… and Jesse the father of David the king. And David was the father of Solomon by the wife of Uriah… and Jacob the father of Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom Jesus was born, who is called Christ.” Matthew 1:1-16
Had Matthew left the story as it appears here, than Jesus would be a direct descendant of Solomon and David through his father Joseph. Instead, three verses later, Matthew reveals that Joseph wasn’t Jesus’ father at all. Jesus is not a descendant of David. Jesus belongs to no tribe, and has no lineage that is relevant to us. Jesus is a king like he is a priest. He is none.
Luke gives us another genealogy of Joseph:
“Jesus… being the son (as was supposed) of Joseph, the son of Heli… the son of Mattatha, the son of Nathan, the son of David” Luke 3:24-31
The question of how Joseph can have two fathers is irrelevant, for I don’t believe in the Divinity of this book. But however you’ll twist this you will come out with a major problem.
- Joseph is a descendant of Solomon. Still doesn’t help Jesus (imagine Joseph headed a foster care would than all 500 homeless children be qualified?)
- Joseph is a descendant of Nathan. Disqualified.
- Mary is a descendant of Solomon or Nathan. Her lineage is irrelevant.
- Jesus wan’t born of a virgin. Then, who is his father??? Joseph apparently admitted it wasn’t him.
This is part one. There is more to discuss on this subject, I just wanted to put this out before the week begins. I hope this finds you well. There will be follow ups God Willing. HaShem/Allah Bless you all.
- “In other words, the Jews are waiting for a king. Jesus can be many things, a Davidic king is not one of them. Regarding the first question I think it’s clear from Nathan’s prophecy that it is an unconditional Vow.”
- Why are they waiting if the promise is unconditional? Beginning with Solomon the throne and kingdom should have been perpetual in that case and Solomon’s descendants should be reigning perpetually over the same kingdom up to the present day. Or does God not keep his promises?
- “Joseph is a descendant of Nathan. Disqualified.”
- I don’t agree.
- “I will raise up thy seed after thee, which shall be of thy sons; and I will establish his kingdom. 12 He shall build me an house, and I will stablish his throne for ever. 13 I will be his father, and he shall be my son: and I will not take my mercy away from him, as I took it from him that was before thee: 14 But I will settle him in mine house and in my kingdom for ever: and his throne shall be established for evermore.”
- Solomon was the immediate fulfilment but he wasn’t the ultimate fulfilment. Otherwise he would have to live forever.
- “6 And he said unto me, Solomon thy son, he shall build my house and my courts: for I have chosen him to be my son, and I will be his father. 7 Moreover I will establish his kingdom for ever, if he be constant to do my commandments and my judgments, as at this day.
- Solomon wasn’t constant to keep God’s commandments. Doesn’t this mean that his line was rejected from being the basis of an everlasting kingdom? This speaks in favour of Joseph’s lineage being the one through which the Messiah, Jesus, would come.
- “God will never replace that son’s kingship, like He had done to Saul. The son’s kingship will be established forever”
- So why did it vanish when the Greeks and Romans came?
- Was Jesus the biological son of Joseph. Genetically, I believe yes. Why is this not possible for God to create a son of Joseph according to the human nature of Jesus?
- “We can therefore establish that anyone who will claim kingship on Israel must be a direct descendant father-to-son, of Solomon and (obviously, and more importantly), David.”
- I don’t see any evidence for the Solomon part of the conditions for being the Messiah.
- Thanks for the interesting discussion.