Jesus the messiah and Isaiah 53, Psalm 22

Christians point ‘to passages in the Bible that talked about one who suffered and was then vindicated, passages such as Isaiah 53 and Psalm 22. Jews, though, had a ready response: these passages are not talking about the messiah. And you can see by reading them for yourself, in fact the word messiah never occurs in them.

Whether or not you choose to understand these passages as referring to the messiah, even though they make no explicit reference to the messiah, is beside my point at this stage. My point here is that no Jew before Christianity was on the scene ever interpreted such passages as referring to the messiah. The messiah was to be a figure of great strength who overwhelmed the enemy and set up God’s kingdom; but Jesus was squashed by the enemy. For most Jews, this was decisive enough. Jesus wasn’t the messiah, more or less by definition.’

Professor Bart Ehrman, The New Testament: A Historical Introduction to the Early Christian Writings (emphasis added).

Happily when Jesus returns he will slay the Antichrist and then everyone who is one of the People of the Book (Jews and Christians) will believe in him. Thus, there will be one community, that of Islam. And indeed the messiah will bring universal peace and justice as was promised in the Jewish Scriptures.

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Categories: Bart Ehrman, Bible, Biblical scholarship, Christianity, Judaism

38 replies

  1. “no Jew before Christianity was on the scene ever interpreted such passages as referring to the messiah.”

    I should point out that we have very few Jewish writings before Jesus. Most of the literature about Rabbi’s like Hillel come from Talmudic times, from the 2nd century AD onward so we don’t know how authentic it is.

    However, it is true that in the dead sea scrolls, you don’t have this but the dead sea scrolls have a lot of weird stuff. They were written by the Essenes who were 1% of the Jews in Israel.

    This is largely an argument from Silence as most of the literature from 2nd Temple Judaism was destroyed in the Jewish-Roman war.

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  2. Paul,
    Have you watched the debate between Michael Brown and Rabbi Daniel Freitag?

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  3. Hilarious. Ask any Jew who the Messiah is? They will tell you a great military leader who annihilates all Israel’s enemies. Who today are the enemies of Israel? Another muslim own goal.

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    • Jews and christians both have developed what the Messiah should be, yet there are no clear passages about 2 ideas. However, the christians one is badly weak, and it doesn’t make sense at all.

      Liked by 2 people

    • What dosent make sense about the Messiah being suffering servant first time around and Lion of Judah second time around?

      What dosent make sense is the angel Gabriel talking to an arab in a cave in the 7th century when psalm 83 calls arabs enemies of God.

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    • So the messiah who is supposed to fear his God turns out to be god himself who would die for the sins of the world and to punish his people who had been taught that their god is not a man, and he is immortal !?
      Christians, why does God create our brains?

      Liked by 2 people

    • Psalm 110 “the Lord said to my Lord sit at my right until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet”.

      I asked Mozer for his view on who the two Lords are? I’m still waiting for an answer.

      Pagan arab moon god worshippers just go back to kissing the metorite and circling the kaaba.

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    • I suspect he knows he is wasting his time with you. Invincible ignorance.

      Liked by 3 people

    • “psalm 83 calls arabs enemies of God”

      There is every reason to conclude that if such a generic statement is there in Psalms which is referring to Arabs of all times, then it is the words of racist men and has nothing to do with the divine.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Yet another thunderous Christian own goal 😂😂😂😂😂😂😂

      “Arabs are the enemy of God”

      Can’t say it would be surprising that your schizophrenic 3 man Saturn god would declare that he would make Ismail and therefore the Arabs a GREAT nation on the one hand and on the other say they are his enemies…

      When psychiatrists diagnose multiple personality disorders and schizophrenia they should just save time and call it Christianity.

      I can see it now, A man goes to the doctor for his test results and the doctor says “I’m sorry but the scan results are not positive. It looks like you have the early onset of Christianity”

      Liked by 1 person

    • Have you even read the bible? God allows many nations to become great before destroying them.

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    • @achillies53,

      You said “Have you even read the bible? God allows many nations to become great before destroying them.”

      Yes, many nations become great and are destroyed. But tell me which of these nations received a name that means “God Hears” a name given by God Himself?

      Secondly which of these nations fit in the Danielic timeline as God’s Kingdom?Daniel 2:
      1. Gold Head – Babylon 605BC-539BC
      2. Chest and arms of silver – Persians 539BC-330BC
      3. Belly,thighs of Bronze- Greeks 330BC-mid first century BC
      4a. Iron legs- Undivided Roman Empire 30BC -395 CE
      4b. Iron and Clay feet- Divided Romans dependent on other nations 395-636CE

      If you follow the timeline of Daniel 2, the Ishmaelite nation became great precisely at the time the stone that becomes the mountain should emerge. One man to a great civilization.

      Liked by 2 people

    • The final kingdom in Daniel 2 is nothing to do with Islam. Its the messianic kingdom.

      Ezekiel 38 & 39 deals with the fate of Islam.

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    • @achillies,

      The Messianic Kingdom of Jesus’ second coming is a final stage of the Muslim Ummah.

      Out of curiosity, since you believe Daniel 2 is a prophecy, can you identify which kingdoms you believe are the four kingdoms of Daniel 2?

      I provided my list with the corresponding timeline.

      From the Quran we learn that before Jesus’s death, the Jews and Christians will believe in him.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Paul, this is why I find you problematic. On the one hand you post this, yet on a previous thread you use kirk’s argument which is completely different. It’s hard to keep up with you

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    • I assume there are multiple ways to show that Trinitarian Christianity is illogical and ahistorical and amoral and blasphemous.

      It is hard to keep up with the multiple ways.

      Liked by 3 people

    • Of course. But it’s a little difficult when these multiple ideas are contradictory. It shows that Bilal doesn’t actually believe what he says, but just looks for and posts anything and everything to suit his christophobia. It’s dishonest really and only reveals his underlying agenda to hate Christ and the church

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  5. > The messiah was to be a figure of great strength who overwhelmed the enemy and set up God’s kingdom; but Jesus was squashed by the enemy. For most Jews, this was decisive enough. Jesus wasn’t the messiah, more or less by definition.’

    To say the messiah is only a figure of strength is false. All of the saviour figures in the Old Testament followed this pattern: They were promised glory, were envied, suffered, were innocent, then entered their glory and brought salvation. This is the case for Joseph, David (the messiah), and Daniel. The gospel fits perfectly with the OT.

    The psalms of David the messiah detail his suffering and he is the covenant and model for messiah to come. In fact Ezekiel 37 calls the future messiah David.

    Isaiah 53 is about the righteous servant. In the book of Isaiah there is only one righteous servant and that is the messiah. The view that it is about the nations speaking about themselves attacking Israel is impossible to sustain exegetically.

    Jesus is the Messiah!

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    • The other point is that the book of Micah makes it clear that the Messiah will be born in Bethlehem. The Messiah couldnt be born in Bethlehem today as it is no longer a Jewish town.

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    • “The gospel fits perfectly with the OT”
      Sam, you have to know that there’s a good reason why jews, muslims, atheists, and even some honest christians think your statement is not true at all. You cannot just ignore that just to satisfy your prejudice.
      Jesus went through tribulation and difficulties, yet Allah rescued him evantully as he did with Elijah, especially that Jesus had been praying to be rescued. Do you accept this pattern?

      Your view that the messiah is the god who comes to die in advanced plan contradicting all the major teachings he had taught to his people before doesn’t make sense whatsoever, and there’s no pattern for it.

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    • It is an historical fact that Jesus of Nazareth was crucified by Pontius Pilate. Even your golden boy Ehrman confirms this. The koran was written by an ignoramus.

      One of the titles of the Messiah is Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace cf Isaiah 9:6.

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    • Isaiah 9:6 does not mention a messiah. And Jesus was the Father??

      Liked by 2 people

    • achillies53,

      Qur’an agrees with the sign of Jonah mentioned by Jesus(as). It’s the Bible authors who wrote what they heard from people who were not even eye-witnesses and ignored the sign mentioned by Jesus(as). When Jesus(as) has foretold this event explicitly, we don’t need Bart Ehrman to affirm a miraculous event. He or any other historian would be the last person to look for affirmation of miraculous events.

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    • Luke explicitly says he spoke to the eyewitnesses. Matthew most likely took dictation from Peter. So the gospels are eyewitness accounts.

      I’m surprised you mention Jonah. When Jesus spoke anout the sign of Jonah. He was referring to the fact that as Jonah spent 3 days in the stomach of a whale he would spend 3 days in the tomb.

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    • Sign of Jonah is a good example of how God (rescues) his servants and prophets.
      Samuel should not forget that example since the Lion Ahmed Deedat taught him that example face to face.

      3 nights & 3 days has not been solved, btw.

      Liked by 1 person

    • How long was jesus in the tomb?
      Was it 3 days and 3 nights?
      Also, was jesus alive in the tomb like jonah?

      Liked by 3 people

    • Oh dear…

      Let a Christian spell it out again… TYPOLOGY

      I know its a big word, but when will you muslims look beyond irrational literalism?

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    • Paulus, but when it comes to the ‘sun prostrating to Allah’ and similar hadith, it suddenly has to be taken literally, right?

      Liked by 2 people

    • achillies said “I’m surprised you mention Jonah. When Jesus spoke anout the sign of Jonah. He was referring to the fact that as Jonah spent 3 days in the stomach of a whale he would spend 3 days in the tomb..”

      My reply,
      To me, it’s the clearest example that Jesus(as) did not die. Being in the tomb or being in the stomach of a gigantic whate is not a ‘sign’. The sign or the miracle is that THEY DID NOT DIE and were rescued by God after they prayed to God sincerely.

      Alhamdulillah, we have the Qur’an to understand the true meanings of the sign mentioned by Jesus(as).

      Liked by 1 person

    • “Paulus, but when it comes to the ‘sun prostrating to Allah’ and similar hadith, it suddenly has to be taken literally, right?”

      You tell me? Better yet, lets ask your most respected scholars

      (Till, when he reached the setting place of the sun) where the sun sets, (he found it setting in a muddy spring) a blackened, muddy and stinking spring; it is also said that this means: a hot spring, (and found a people thereabout) these people were disbelievers: (We said: O Dhu’l-Qarnayn!) We inspired him (Either punish) either kill them until they accept to believe that there is no deity except Allah (or show them kindness) or you pardon them and let them be. (Tanwîr al-Miqbâs min Tafsîr Ibn ‘Abbâs, commentary on Sura 18:86

      Allah’s saying, “Until, when he reached the setting of the sun,” means that Zul-Qarnain traveled on a path until he reached the furthest point West that a person can reach on earth, which is the western part of earth- ibn kathir

      So, si ce your most respected scholars take it literally, I guess we probably should as well. But you are probably embarrassed for Muhammad at this point no doubt

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    • What a loser!
      Ibn Abbas was explaining the meaning of ( Ayen Hame’ah).
      Ibn Kathir in his Tafsir explained that it means the sight of the Sun from Dhul Qarnin perspective, and It doesn’t mean that he reached the Sun. If you have the English translation, you should know that. But I guess that you’re just a copy/paste boy. I don’t blame you since dr Licona used the same stupid argument, so what should we expect from you!
      Moreover, you can find the same thing in (Zechariah 8:7). The Hebrew text reads like this “from the land where the sun rises and from the land where the sun sets.”, yet your translations have changed it to be (the east land and the west land ) 🙂
      I believe this kind of expressions is not found only in Semitic languages.
      Finally, Jesus was more than specific when he determined the period as 3 days & 3 nights. Where’s the typology?

      Liked by 4 people

    • “From Dhul Qarnin perspective,”

      “Until, when he reached the setting of the sun,” means that Zul-Qarnain traveled on a path until he reached the furthest point West that a person can reach on earth, which is the western part of earth”

      Hmm, and yet is says he travelled on a path and actually reached a point. Yet you think it means that Dhul Qarnin on thought he travelled a path to the furtherst pint west, it was just his perspective? 😂😂😂

      What is it that the Koran says about following conjecture abdullah bin conjecture?

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    • “Ibn Abbas was explaining the meaning of ( Ayen Hame’ah).”

      Says the conjecture following Muslim embarrassed by his prophet. Conjecture, conjecture, conjecture.

      Hey Bilal, are you looking for a wife ATM?

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