Reason Eight

  

JESUS FAILED TO FULFILL ANY OF THE SIX AUTHENTIC

 JEWISH MESSIANIC CRITERIA

INTRODUCTION: The word "messiah"[1] means anointed with oil. All kings,[2] high priests,[3] and prophets [4] in the Jewish Bible are described as "messiahs" because they were all anointed with oil into God's service. Many Jewish prophets foretold that a particular messiah, the Messiah ben David, would appear and fulfill six major prophecies that will lead the world into a special Messianic Era. These messianic criteria are and have always been universally accepted by the Jewish People. Jesus did not qualify as the Jewish Messiah ben David for the simple reason that he did not fulfill any of these criteria.  The Messiah ben David must:

1. have the correct genealogy by being
             descended from King David and
             King Solomon,

2. be anointed King of Israel,

3. return the Jewish People to Israel,

4. rebuild the Temple in Jerusalem,

5. bring peace to the world and end all war,

6. bring knowledge of God to the world.
 
THE BIBLE'S MESSIANIC CRITERIA ARE EMPIRICALLY VERIFIABLE:
"Faith" is irrelevant to the Jewish concept of the Messiah ben David, because an individual either fulfills these prophetic criteria or he doesn't. Christianity requires faith that Jesus is their "messiah" precisely because he didn't fulfill any of the Jewish messianic criteria. Christianity's concept of faith in Jesus is therefore a substitute for this defect. It is important to note that the fulfillment of each of the six Jewish messianic criteria is empirically verifiable and therefore no faith is required to determine the identity of the Jewish Messiah ben David. For example, the entire world will be able to observe that the Temple has been rebuilt, the Jews have returned to Israel, the entire world believes in God, and the world is at peace. Virtually none of the Christian messianic "proofs" are empirically verifiable.  

MAIMONIDES AND THE MESSIAH BEN DAVID: Rabbi Moses ben Maimon (the Rambam) was one of the greatest rabbinic sages in Jewish history. He explained how someday we would know the identity of the Messiah ben David: 

"We may assume that an individual is the Messiah [ben David] if he fulfills the following conditions: He must be a ruler, from the House of David, immersed in the Torah and its commandments like David his ancestor. He must also follow both the written and the Oral Torah, lead all Jews back to the Torah, strengthen the observance of its laws, and fight God's battles. If one fulfills these conditions, then we may assume that he is the Messiah. If he does this successfully, and then rebuilds the Temple [Beis HaMikdash] on its original site and gathers all the dispersed Jews, then we may be certain that he is the Messiah. He will then perfect the entire world and bring all men to serve God in unity. It is true that the prophet Isaiah predicted, 'The wolf shall live with the sheep, the leopard shall lie down with the kid.'[5] This however, is merely an allegory, meaning that the Jews will live safely, even with the wicked nations, who are likened to wolves and leopards."[6]  

THE FIRST MESSIANIC CRITERIA IS GENEALOGY: Of the six primary Jewish messianic criteria, the only one that the Christian Bible claimed for Jesus was genealogy. The Messiah ben David must be Jewish, from the Tribe of Judah, from the seed of King David, and from the seed of King Solomon. (See genealogy chart). 

  1. He must be Jewish.[7] One is Jewish if their mother is Jewish.[8] 
  1. He must be from the tribe of Judah.[9] Under Jewish law, tribal affiliation is through the birth father only.[10] Since Jesus allegedly had no human father, he had no tribal affiliation. Therefore, Jesus was not from the tribe of Judah and is eliminated from messianic consideration.

The book of Chronicles in the Jewish Bible lists the genealogy of Abraham through King David plus an additional 29 descendants. The Gospels of Matthew and Luke provide conflicting genealogies for Jesus in an unsuccessful attempt to demonstrate that Jesus fulfilled the messianic criteria of genealogy. These three genealogies are listed, compared, and contrasted on the following page.  

GENEALOGY CHART
( Click Here )

 JESUS DID NOT QUALIFY: NOTES TO THE GENEALOGIES OF MATTHEW AND LUKE [11] Matthew and Luke made numerous mistakes in their so-called "genealogies" of Jesus that eliminate him from messianic consideration. The numbers to the left of the text below refer back to the numbers on the genealogy chart on the preceding page:

(1)   He must be from the House of David.
[12] Matthew 1 and Luke 3 traced Jesus' lineage through Joseph back to King David. However, the Gospels assert that the "holy spirit" was Jesus' father (not Joseph).[13] There is no indication in the Gospels that Joseph ever adopted Jesus although under Jewish law certain family and tribal affiliations must be through the birth father and cannot be claimed by adoption.[14] For example, if a Jewish priest, (a Cohen), has a male child, he has the status of a priest by birthright. However, if he adopts a child whose birth father was not a Cohen, the child does not have the status of a priest like his adopted father. Since Joseph was not Jesus' birth father, there is no evidence in the Gospels that Jesus was from the house of David, which cannot be conferred through adoption under Jewish law. This eliminates Jesus from messianic consideration.
 

(2)   He must be from the Seed of Solomon[15] According to prophecy, the Messiah ben David must descend through David's son Solomon. Not only was Solomon a king, he built the first Temple, which has profound messianic implications. Matthew claimed that Jesus descended through Solomon but Luke claimed that Jesus descended through Nathan, David's other son (who was not a king). This eliminates Jesus' genealogy through Luke. 

(3)   A Fifteen Generation Difference: Luke's genealogy from David to Jesus is fifteen generations longer than Matthew's genealogy from David to Jesus. This undermines the Christian claim that the Gospels are the "word of God," because God certainly knows the genealogy of King David. Some Christians attempt to solve this fatal problem by claiming that Luke's genealogy is actually that of Mary, although Mary is not mentioned in Luke's genealogy. Further, this claim is rendered meaningless by the fact that Jewish law only recognizes tribal affiliation through the father.[16] Even if one could consider the genealogy of the mother, if one assumes a generation is at least twenty years, this means that Joseph was at least three hundred years older than his wife (fifteen extra generations times twenty years per generation equals a three hundred year difference in their ages). This gives new meaning to the idea of a "May-December" relationship. 

(4)   Who was Jesus' Grandfather? The two "genealogies" do not agree on the identity of Jesus' grandfather. According to Matthew, Jesus' grandfather was Jacob and according to Luke he was Heli. This creates another devastating contradiction, further undermining the credibility of the genealogies given for Jesus by Matthew and Luke.   

PAUL AND THE GENEALOGIES: The apostle Paul was the putative author of the Epistles Titus and Timothy, which subtly address the issue of Jesus' genealogy: 

  • "But avoid foolish disputes, genealogies, contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and useless."(Titus 3:3)
  • "...nor give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which cause disputes rather than Godly edification which is in faith." (1 Timothy 1:4)

CONCLUSION: The flawed and contradictory genealogies in Luke and Matthew are extremely problematic since genealogy is the only authentic messianic criteria that the Christian Bible claims that Jesus fulfilled. Jesus is eliminated from messianic consideration because of the myriad of errors and problems in both Matthew and Luke's genealogies.  

THE SECOND MESSIANIC CRITERIA IS THAT HE WILL BE ANOINTED KING OF ISRAEL. The term "messiah" means anointed with oil and in a messianic context refers to an anointed king. According to Jewish prophecy the Messiah ben David must descend from David who was a King of Israel. Therefore, David's messianic descendant must also be an anointed king of Israel.  It is necessary that a Jewish prophet (or a High Priest) anoint Jewish kings (with oil) because prophets are messengers of God and authenticate their right to kingship. For example, the prophet Samuel anointed King Saul with oil,[17] and Samuel also anointed King David with oil.[18]  

This is one of the reasons the prophet Malachi prophesized that the prophet Elijah would return prior to the coming of the Messiah ben David.[19] A prophet (Elijah) must anoint David's messianic descendent king of Israel. Accordingly, in the Christian Bible Matthew claimed that John the Baptist was "Elijah the prophet."[20] Problematically, the Gospel of John (contradicting Matthew) reported that John the Baptist said he was not Elijah the prophet,[21] creating yet another problem for Jesus.  

According to the Gospel of John, when the Roman Procurator Pilate asked Jesus if he was "king of the Jews," Jesus answered "yes."[22] In addition, the Gospels report that a woman anointed Jesus' head with oil,[23] and a woman anointed Jesus' feet with oil.[24] Jesus was also anointed with oil for his burial.[25] Interestingly, since Jesus claimed to be king of an "otherworldly kingdom,"[26] this anointing with burial oil may have been intended by the Gospel writer to initiate his rule into a "spiritual" kingdom." However, although Jesus may have claimed to be "king of Israel" and nameless women may have anointed him with oil, these women were not prophets and there is no indication in the Gospels that Jesus was ever anointed Jesus king of Israel.   

SAMUEL: "When your days are complete and you lie with your forefathers, I shall raise up after you your offspring who will issue from your loins, and I shall make his kingdom firm. He shall build a Temple for My sake, and I shall make firm the throne of his kingdom forever. I shall be a Father unto him and he shall be a son unto Me, so that when he sins I will chastise him with the rod of men and with afflictions of human beings. But My kindness will not be removed from him as I removed [it] from Saul, whom I removed from before you. Your dynasty and your kingdom will remain steadfast before you for all time; your throne will remain firm forever." (2 Samuel 7:12-16) 

CHRONICLES: "When your days are complete to go to your forefathers, I will raise up after you your offspring who will be from among your sons; and I shall make his kingdom firm. He shall build a Temple for Me and I shall make his throne firm forever." (1 Chronicles 17:11-12) 

CONCLUSION: Jesus may have claimed to be "king" and women may have anointed him with oil. However, a prophet never anointed Jesus king of Israel. Therefore, he failed to fulfill this messianic criteria and is therefore eliminated from messianic consideration.  

THE THIRD MESSIANIC CRITERIA IS THAT HE WILL BRING THE JEWISH PEOPLE BACK TO ISRAEL. Not only did Jesus fail to bring the Jewish People back to Israel, the Jews were expelled from Israel shortly after Jesus lived. This is the opposite of what this messianic prophecy requires.

ISAIAH: "He will arise a banner for the nations and assemble the castaways of Israel; and He will gather in the dispersed ones of Judah from the four corners of the earth." (Isaiah 11:12) 

ISAIAH: "It shall be on that day that Hashem will thresh, from the surging [Euphrates] River to the Brook of Egypt, and you [Israel] will be gathered up one by one, O Children of Israel. It shall be on that day that a great shofar will be blown, and those who are lost in the land of Assyria and those cast away in the land of Egypt will come [together], and they will prostrate themselves to Hashem on the holy mountain in Jerusalem." (Isaiah 27:12-13)

 JEREMIAH: "I will return the captivity of Judah and captivity of Israel, and will rebuild them as at first." (Jeremiah 33:7) 

CONCLUSION: Jesus did not return the Jewish People to Israel and he is therefore eliminated from messianic consideration. 

THE FOURTH MESSIANIC CRITERIA IS THAT HE WILL REBUILD THE TEMPLE IN JERUSALEM. Obviously, Jesus could not have fulfilled the messianic prophecy to rebuild the Temple since it was not destroyed during his lifetime. This (third) Temple must be built on the Temple Mount as specifically described by the prophet Ezekiel.[27] John's Gospel reported that Jesus said that the Temple would be destroyed and he would re-rebuild it.[28] Matthew's Gospel reported that Jesus was accused of threatening to destroy the Temple.[29] Perhaps the authors of these Gospels realized that Jesus had not fulfilled this messianic criteria and these comments were intended to address this problem. Notwithstanding the foregoing, the Jewish Messiah ben David must build the third Temple.

EZEKIEL: "I will seal a covenant of peace with them; it will be an eternal covenant with them; and I will emplace them and increase them, and I will place My Sanctuary among them forever. My dwelling place will be among them; I will be a God to them and they will be a people to Me. Then the nations will know that I am Hashem who sanctifies Israel, when My Sanctuary will be among them forever." (Ezekiel 37:26-28)

MICAH: "It will be in the end of days that the Mountain of the Temple of Hashem will be firmly established as the most prominent of the mountains, and it will be exalted up above the hills, and peoples will stream to it." (Micah 4:1)

ISAIAH: "It will happen in the end of days; The Mountain of the Temple of Hashem will be firmly established as the head of the mountains, and it will be exalted above the hills, and all the nations will stream to it. Many peoples will go and say, 'Come, let us go up to the Mountain of Hashem, to the Temple of the God of Jacob, and He will teach us of His ways and we will walk in His paths." (Isaiah 2: 2,3)

CONCLUSION: Jesus never rebuilt the Temple in Jerusalem in the manner described by the prophet Ezekiel and is therefore eliminated from messianic consideration.

THE FIFTH MESSIANIC CRITERIA IS THAT HE WILL BRING PEACE TO THE WORLD AND END ALL WAR.  Jesus brought no peace to the world. Israel was destroyed in two wars with Rome shortly after Jesus lived. The last 2000 years have been the most violent in human history and the Church that was founded in Jesus' name caused many of these wars. Since its re-establishment in 1948, Israel has not been safe from her enemies. 

EZEKIEL: "I will seal a covenant of peace with them; it will be an eternal covenant with them; and I will emplace them and increase them, and I will place My Sanctuary among them forever." (Ezekiel 37:26) 

MICAH: "He will judge between many peoples, and will settle the arguments of mighty nations from far away. They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning knives; nation will not lift sword against nations, nor will they learn war anymore." (Micah 4:3) 

ISAIAH: "He will judge among the nations, and will settle the arguments of many peoples. They shall beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks; nation will not lift sword against nation and they will no longer study warfare." (Isaiah 2:4) 

CONCLUSION: Jesus brought no peace to the world, and he is therefore eliminated from messianic consideration.   

THE SIXTH MESSIANIC CRITERIA IS THAT HE WILL BRING KNOWLEDGE OF GOD TO THE WORLD. Jesus did not bring knowledge of the Jewish God to the world. The Christian Bible directly contradicts the Jewish definition of God and directly contradicts all fundamental Jewish teachings about God. Most of the world still does not know God. Ironically, whenever a Christian missionary proselytizes a non-believer he proves that the Messiah ben David has not yet come. His act of proselytizing is a graphic demonstration that the world is not yet filled with knowledge of God. 

ISAIAH: "They will neither injure nor destroy in all of My sacred mountain; for the earth will be as filled with knowledge of Hashem as water covering the sea bed." (Isaiah 11:9) 

ISAIAH: "The glory of Hashem will be revealed, and all flesh together will see that the mouth of Hashem has spoken." (Isaiah 40:5)  

ZEPHANIAH: "For then I will change the nations [to speak] a pure language, so that they all will proclaim the Name of Hashem, to worship Him with a united resolve." (Zephaniah 3:9) 

JEREMIAH: "They will no longer teach - each man his fellow, each man his brother-saying, "Know Hashem! For all of them will know Me, from their smallest to their greatest - the word of Hashem - when I will forgive their iniquity and will no longer recall their sin." (Jeremiah   31:33) 

CONCLUSION: Jesus failed to bring knowledge of God to the world and is therefore eliminated from messianic consideration. The Messiah ben David by definition is the man who fulfills the six authentic messianic criteria discussed above. The Christian idea of "belief or faith" in this messiah or in his identity is never mentioned in the Jewish Bible because it is irrelevant. In Jewish terms, failure to fulfill even one of the messianic criteria is conclusive proof that individual is not the Messiah ben David. Therefore, when Jesus died without fulfilling any of the six messianic criteria, this was conclusive proof that he was not the Messiah ben David.  

THERE IS NO "SECOND COMING" CONCEPT IN THE JEWISH BIBLE: Missionaries respond with their "second coming" theory, which asserts that Jesus will accomplish everything when he comes "next time." There are two major problems with this Christian answer. First, the second coming theory has no scriptural basis in the Jewish Bible. In fact, scripture states that when a person dies, "on that day his plans all perish."[30] Therefore, according to scripture, when Jesus died, his plans ended. Second, the second coming theory can apply to any person who has ever lived and therefore is totally meaningless. For example, one can claim that their Gentile grandmother was the messiah. When challenged that she didn't accomplish anything, one can say that when she "comes back" she will be born a Jewish man with the correct genealogy and will accomplish everything!


[1]  "Moshiach" in Hebrew, and "christ" in Greek

[2]  1 Kings 1:39

[3]  Lev. 4:3

[4]  Isaiah 61:1

[5]  Isaiah 11:6

[6] Talmud Yad, Melachim 11:4

[7]  Numbers 24:17, Deut. 17:15

[8]  Lev. 24:10, Ezra 10:2,3

[9]  Genesis 49:10

[10]  Numbers 34:14, Numbers 1:18-44, Leviticus 24:10,

[11]  Source: Let's Get Biblical by Rabbi Tovia Singer

[12]  Jeremiah 33:17-20, 1 Chron. 17:11-12

[13]  Matthew 1:18

[14]  Numbers 34:14, Numbers 1:18-44, Leviticus 24:10

[15]  2 Samuel 7:12-16, Psalms 89:29-38, 1 Chron.17:11-14, 22:9-10, 28:6-7

[16]  Numbers 1:18

[17] 1 Samuel 15:1

[18] 1 Samuel 16:1, 13

[19] Malachi 3:23-24

[20] Matthew 11:11-14, 17:12-13

[21] John 1:21

[22] John 18:37

[23] Mark 14:3, Matthew 26:7

[24] Luke 7:38, John 12:3

[25] John 12:7, Matthew 26:12

[26] John 18:36

[27]  Ezekiel, chapters 40-48

[28]  John 2:19

[29]  Matthew 26:61

[30] Psalm 146:4

 




 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 



 

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