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Constructing The Real Jesus Series: Messiah Blueprint and Self-fulfilling Prophecies

February 13, 2013
 The Old Testament’s messianic prophecies were the blueprint for the Jewish Messiah. For if anyone were to imagine himself as being that nation’s MUCH-LONGED-FOR coming great leader and mighty conqueror, those prophecies described what that person must do and what he must be like—all of which represented a confluence of WHAT WAS BEING LONGED FOR by that chronically subjugated nation, therefore WHAT WAS BEING IMAGINED by that nation’s prophets with respect to their future leader… and then for anyone who felt they might have what it took to be that person, WHAT THAT PERSON MIGHT ACTUALLY BE LIKE.
Those prophecies, more than anything else, describe a Jewish conqueror who would bring an extravagantly copious prosperity and peace to the Israel Nation, even beyond those descriptions of David’s and Solomon’s reigns; and this time it would apparently need to include the purpose for man, or human beings, on the Earth as well as everlasting life somehow being delivered to humans. That’s what was LONGED FOR by these prophecies and that was what they have called for. Of course if Jesus received enough education to become literate, due to some innovative efforts to secure that for him by his mother, then he would have been able to read quite a number of those prophecies in what would have been the Greek Septuagint collection of the Jewish scriptures… and then he could begin to form his plans.
If so, he would have run into a fairly difficult problem soon enough: Not only was the great Messiah of Israel supposed to be a great conqueror, but someone who was similarly great was supposed to die as a sacrifice for the nation, including that sacrificial death being for what could even become extra-Jewish nationals. For at least one of those prophecies of the future described such a sacrificial death (Isaiah 53) while Jeremiah 31 says that the first covenant God made with the Jews would be replaced by another covenant that would become permanent and would be much better—which all had to be factored into his plan as Jesus began to read these passages perhaps in his late teens and then continued to read those throughout his twenties… all while forming his plan from the blueprint of what all of those prophecies described. This is how prophecies like this become self-fulfilling: For people like Jesus, which do pop up once in a while, of course not with the regularity of much more typical type people, can feel they have a responsibility or duty to discharge in relation to his people’s greatest aspirations and so that person begins to put some sort of plan into action.
But how in the world could prophecies about a mighty conqueror be harmonized with one of those prophecies that’s about someone who is also great dying an abusive death—i.e., while seeming to have no impulses or at least no expressions of retribution as that’s described in Isaiah 53—at the hands of his enemies? How could that work? So were two different great persons supposed to come in Israel’s future? Then this eureka moment must have occurred to him: The Messiah would come as a lowly person initially, preach his wisdom to the people, which doing so is described in some of those prophecies, then following that die as the nation’s sacrifice. That would be the first part of the scenario. For coming as a lowly person would also be something easy to fulfill, just like dying as a sacrifice by provoking Rome and the Sanhedrin with messianic statements of grandeur that would be interpreted as treason or sedition, would be easy to bring on at the appropriate time—that is if one can bravely face the pain of that kind of death. But if it’s God’s will then that pain will only be temporary… Then he would come back as that Mighty Conqueror Messiah after he rose from the dead, to conquer whoever was disobedient and evil while humans could at that time also begin a palpable entry into eternal life! Voila! Everything would fit! By that everything would be harmonized and all of those messianic aspirations by his people would finally be answered; and Rome would get off their backs! So maybe the God of Israel does live after all! And Maybe he did, in fact, inspire all of those prophecies! Ingenious! And so everything can in that way be fulfilled even as there would be no other way for all of those prophecies to fit together if they are certifiably divine, viz. genuine.
Of course those who wrote all of those messianic prophecies were simply trying to wrap their heads around what a great future Jewish leader would be like, and many wanted to contribute their ideas to that portrait. And whoever wrote Isaiah 53—while that book of 66 chapters most likely received ongoing entries by Israel insiders, and then later by its priests (in much the same way Daniel looks to have been written over the course of 2½ centuries, with Daniel being composed between circa 250 [or perhaps as late a 200] and 65 AD)—those authors were most likely wrestling with the debut of a temple sacrifice system via the first appearance of the *Pentateuch in circa 630 BC under Josiah, as described in 2 Chronicles 34:14-33.
* For more on that: The first three books of the Pentateuch were most likely envisioned by some associates of David around 1000 BC; then the work on those would have begun under Solomon, his son, in circa 960 BC, which the enormous effort of writing those could have lasted till 660 BC, and then at least Genesis through Leviticus were finally debuted some 30 odd years after that—in 630 BC under Josiah which debut looks to have been reported in 2 Chronicles 34 (all while Bible “history” apparently has a habit of employing half-true storytelling). A little more on this: Numbers and Deuteronomy are essentially redundant in relation to Exodus and Leviticus, and there are reasons to believe (based on patterns in how those were written relating to authorship) that a couple of the books of the Pentateuch may have been produced by the Northern kingdom of Israel, which was a competitor to the Southern kingdom of Israel, which this excerpt from my first book produced in 2006, The Turning Tide, refers to: “Those four [authors of the Pentateuch] are now described [by scholars] as ‘J,’ ‘E,’ ‘D,’ and ‘P’… [while] ‘J’ was the one who always used the name Yaweh [for God], ‘E’ was the one who used the name Elohim [for God], ‘D’ the one who wrote Deuteronomy, and ‘P’ was a priest.” For you can’t really solve the puzzle of the real Jesus without knowing how earlier Jewish history must have realistically unfolded first. One more note on this: The prophecy cited by the NT, and perhaps by Jesus also in this case, regarding him rising from the dead on the third day, is Hosea 6:1-3, which isn’t necessarily a messianic prophecy at all, but was used for that purpose anyway… sort of like how Peter in Acts chapter one is shown using Psalm 109:17 to refer to the fate of Judas, which passage in that Psalm indicates the meaning intended had a far more general application.   -DL
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