The Gathering/Pastor Barry: Evidence For The Resurrection #2 Fulfillment of Prophecy To hear this message and others download our free App in the App Store: Search The Gathering Connect or go to THEGATHERINGHG.COM
Messiah? Isaiah 52:13-53:12, Luke 4:16-30, 24:44-49, Matthew 16:16-17
The early followers of Jesus were convinced that Jesus was their long-awaited Messiah; however, most Jewish leaders did not share their view so they crucified Him. These leaders held that Jesus never fulfilled the requirements to be the Messiah. Today, all the main branches of Judaism maintain that Jesus is not the Jewish Messiah for the same reason. These would say that the death and resurrection of the Jewish Messiah was never accepted or taught in Judaism. This concept however is not correct. The discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls (1947) prove so. Of the documents discovered 40% are copies of texts from the Hebrew Scriptures. 30% are texts from the Second Temple Period which were not canonized in the Hebrew Bible and the remaining 30% are sectarian manuscripts that shed light on the rules and beliefs of Judaism in those time periods. These manuscripts reveal that pre-rabbinic Jewish interpretations of Isaiah 53 during the second temple period saw the “suffering servant” as the messiah who both dies for Israel and reigns eternal. The finding is significant because it dates the messianic interpretation of Isaiah 53 over a century before Christianity and before the emergence of rabbinic Judaism. The messianic interpretation of Isaiah 53 was not discovered in the Christian Church. It was already developed by Jews and found in Qumran. One who is educated in the life and ministry of Jesus can not read the “Suffering Servant” prophecy of Isaiah and not see Him.
What Is Messiah? The word messiah is derived from a Hebrew word which is translated “one who is anointed.” The concept of a particular Anointed One, developed within the Jewish Scriptures refers to a promised descendant from the line of King David who will redeem the Jewish people and reign on the Davidic throne. In the Greek Bible, the word is translated Christos, from which we get the English word “Christ.” Traditional Judaism and Christianity agree in principle that the Messiah will be a, descendant of King David and establish a global kingdom. He is sent by God and will usher in a utopian era of peace. The oldest objection to the Messiahship of Jesus has been that he never established peace on earth and restored the Jewish nation, but Christians believe that there will be a “second coming”, at which time Jesus will fulfill the messianic functions originally expected of him. Traditional Jewish views focus on Messiah’s utopian reign. Contemporary Jews minimize or altogether reject the belief in a literal, personal Messiah. Reform Judaism rejects an heir of King David to ever arise.
The Biblical Messiah: The earliest reference to a prophetic son of David is found in 2 Samuel, approximately 1000 BC. The prophecy says the “Messiah” will be born in the line of David according to 2 Samuel 7:12-13. Referring to David, these verses say, “When your days are over and you rest with your fathers, I will raise up your offspring to succeed you, who will come from your own body, and I will establish his kingdom. He is the one who will build a house for my Name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever.” The Davidic line reaches through the line of Seth to Noah, through the line of Shem to Abraham. Then through the lines of Isaac, Jacob, Judah, David, and to Jesus.
The lineage of Jesus is recorded in two places: Matthew 1:1-17 and Luke 3:23-38. It seems as if these two genealogies of Jesus contradict, but they do not. Luke is referring to the genealogy of Mary and the genealogy recorded in Matthew is of Joseph. The Matthew genealogy follows Joseph’s line (Jesus’ legal father), through David’s son Solomon. Luke follows Mary’s line (Jesus’ blood mother), through David’s son Nathan. Through both of these lines, Jesus Christ is David’s descendant and is eligible to be the promised Messiah. Tracing a genealogy through the mother’s line is somewhat unusual, but the virgin birth is unusual as well!
Jesus Claimed to be Messiah: Some say that Jesus never claimed to be the Messiah, but they would be wrong again. At the beginning of His ministry He made this claim: Luke writes that Jesus went to Nazareth and unrolled the scroll of the prophet Isaiah, and read from Isaiah 61:1-2a “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” Then he rolled the scroll back up, and said, “Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.” Luke 4:16-30 Jesus quoted Isaiah’s prophecy about the coming Messiah and said that He fulfilled it!
Luke also writes that after Jesus resurrected and appeared to the disciples in the upper room He said, These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you, that everything written about me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled… Thus it is written, that the Messiah should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead and that repentance for the forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. Luke 24:44-48
Jesus also received Peter’s definition of Him as Messiah. Matthew writes that Jesus said, “But what about you?” Jesus asked. “Who do you say I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah! For this was not revealed to you by flesh and blood, but by My Father in heaven.… Matthew 16:16-17
Jesus Proved to be Messiah: According to Jewish scriptures, there are proof positive prophecies that the Messiah must fulfill. The first we have already established in Jesus; 1.) The Messiah must be a descendant of king David. 2.) The Messiah must be born in Bethlehem (Micah 5:2-4). Jesus was (Matthew 2:1-12). 3.) The Messiah must be born of a virgin (Isaiah 7:14). Jesus was (Matthew 1:18-23). 4.) The Messiah will suffer and die to atone for sin (Isaiah 53, Zechariah 12:10). Jesus did (Romans 5:8-11). 5.) The Messiah must come before the destruction of the second temple and fulfill a chain of events (Daniel 9:24-27) within the time line described by the prophet Daniel: The sequence of events are as follows: (A) the temple will be rebuilt in times of trouble, (B) the Messiah will arrive, (C) the Messiah will be cut off or be killed, and (D) after his death, Jerusalem and the temple will be destroyed by an army (Roman Army 70AD). All of these were fulfilled in Jesus, and He Himself prophesied His own death and resurrection (Matthew 20:18-19) as well as the destruction of the temple and Jerusalem (Luke 19:41-44). All of this happened in the exact time line of Daniel’s amazing prophecy of weeks.
Note: The five prophecies we’ve reviewed about the Messiah were written by men from different times and places between about 500 and 1,000 years before Jesus was born. Thus there was no opportunity for collusion among them. Bible scholars tell us that nearly 300 references to 61 specific prophecies of the Messiah were fulfilled by Jesus Christ. The odds against one person fulfilling that many prophecies would be beyond all mathematical possibility.
Proof for the Resurrection? Ephesians 5:14
Jesus foretelling and fulfilling prophecy has everything to do with evidence for the resurrection because it proves the point that Jesus must be supernatural. Resurrection from the dead is a supernatural happening. None but Jesus could have fulfilled these prophecies and none but Jesus can raise himself up from the dead.
How about you? Are you feeling overwhelmed with life, even a bit dead? Do you need a resurrection, hope in the midst of hopelessness? Do you need a miracle. There is no one else who has proven so well that He is able to do all that He has promised for those who trust in Him.