Previous Next

Table of Contents

Messiah


Messi’ah (anointed). This word (Mashiach) answers to the word Christ (Ξπριστ́ος) in the New Testament, and is applicable in its first sense to any one anointed with the holy oil. The kings of Israel were called anointed, from the mode of their consecration. 1 Sam. 2:10, 35; 12:3, 5, etc. This word also refers to the expected Prince of the chosen people who was to complete God’s purposes for them and to redeem them, and of whose coming the prophets of the old covenant in all time spoke. He was the Messiah, the Anointed, i.e., consecrated as the king and prophet by God’s appointment. The word is twice used in the New Testament of Jesus. John 1:41; 4:25; DAV “Messias.” The earliest gleam of the gospel is found in the account of the fall. Gen. 3:15. The blessings in store for the children of Shem are remarkably indicated in the words of Noah. Gen. 9:26. Next follows the promise to Abraham. Gen. 12:2, 3. A great step is made in Gen. 49:10. This is the first case in which the promises distinctly centre in one person. The next passage usually quoted is the prophecy of Balaam. Num. 24:17-19. The prophecy of Moses, Deut. 18:18, claims attention. Passages in the Psalms are numerous which are applied to the Messiah in the New Testament; such as Ps. 2, 16, 22, 40, 110. The advance in clearness in this period is great. The name of Anointed, i.e., King, comes in, and the Messiah is to come of the lineage of David. He is described in his exaltation, with his great kingdom that shall be spiritual rather than temporal. Ps. 2, 21, 40, 110. In other places he is seen in suffering and humiliation. Ps. 16, 22, 40. Later on the prophets show the Messiah as a king and ruler of David’s house, who should come to reform and restore the Jewish nation and purify the Church, as in Isa. 11, 40-66. The blessings of the restoration, however, will not be confined to Jews; the heathen are made to share them fully. Isa. 2, 66. The passage of Micah 5:2 (comp. Matt. 2:6) left no doubt in the mind of the Sanhedrin as to the birthplace of the Messiah. The lineage of David is again alluded to in Zech. 12:10-14. The coming of the Forerunner and of the Anointed as clearly revealed in Mal. 3:1; 4:5, 6. The Pharisees and those of the Jews who expected Messiah at all looked for a temporal prince only. The apostles themselves were infected with this opinion till after the resurrection. Matt. 20:20, 21; Luke 24:21; Acts 1:6. Gleams of a purer faith appear in Luke 2:30; 23:42; John 4:25.