Jesus Christ/Jesus as the Jewish Messiah

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Jesus as the Jewish Messiah

Summary: Is Jesus really the God of the Old Testament and the Jewish Messiah? What role does the Book of Mormon play in establishing Jesus as the Jewish Messiah? This page is meant to respond to those questions.


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Question: Is Jesus the promised Messiah of the Old Testament?

This page is still under construction. We welcome any suggestions for improving the content of this FAIR Answers Wiki page.

Introduction to Question

The question of whether or not Jesus is the promised Jewish messiah is fundamental to the claims of Christianity, Judaism, and, by extension, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

All three groups accept the Hebrew Bible (comprising the books of Genesis through Malachi) as Holy Scripture and take note of the prophecies of a figure that would come as the Messiah. The word Messiah comes from the Hebrew word Meshiach which means “anointed one”.

BYU Professor Trevan Hatch summarizes the content of the prophecies and the expectations that Jews had of the Messiah prior to Jesus’ coming. Those include:

  • He would be a preexistent figure with some divine qualities.
  • All people would worship him
  • He would be a king
  • He would reestablish the Davidic dynasty
  • His kingdom would be everlasting
  • He would have authority over all nations.
  • He would lead Israel.
  • He would judge the wicked and overthrow Israel’s foreign enemies.
  • He would be associated with righteousness.
  • He would heal the sick, restore sight to the blind, and raise the dead.[1]

On top of these biblical expectations, the Book of Mormon adds its own messianic expectations. Hatch writes that "The Book of Mormon posits the following regarding the Messiah: (1) he would be the future redeemer of humankind (1 Nephi 10:4–5; 2 Nephi 1:10; 2:6); (2) the Son of God was the Messiah (1 Nephi 10:17); (3) he would come in the fullness of time, also called the meridian of time (2 Nephi 2:26); (4) he would be slain and rise from the dead (1 Nephi 10:11; 2 Nephi 25:14)."[2]:73 All of these Jesus claimed to fulfill (and did fulfill) in both his Jewish and Nephite ministries.

Hatch writes that “[w]e must be careful not to assume that all Jews expected the messiah to be and do all these things. Some Jews may have expected some of these outcomes while rejecting others. This list is simply a conglomeration of what is apparent in pre-Christian Jewish texts regarding messianic expectations.”[1] Thus, while it might be enlightening and inspiring to see Jesus fulfill all of the expectations listed above, it might not be necessary in order to establish his messiahship.

Joshua M. Matson notes that "[w]hile scholars still struggle to reach a consensus concerning the extent to which messianism influenced the formation and beliefs of Jewish communities in the Second Temple period,[3] they widely recognize a body of ancient texts that appear to have served as the foundation for messianic expectations. This body includes texts in the Hebrew Bible (Genesis 49:8–12; Numbers 24:15–19; 2 Samuel 7:12–17; Isaiah 11:1–9; Psalm 89:36–38; Amos 9:11–15; and Jeremiah 23:5–8; 33:15–18) and expansions on biblical traditions in nonbiblical texts (Psalms of Solomon 17–18; 4 Ezra 13; 2 Baruch 72–74; and texts from the Dead Sea Scrolls like 1QM V and 4Q175)."[4]

Some Jews expected there to be one figure that would satisfy all of these requirements with one and only one arrival or advent. Others thought that there would be two seperate figures that would satisfy these requirements. Still others thought that there would be one figure but that he or she would satisfy these requirements with two arrivals or comings. It is this last one that Christians have held onto as the basis of their belief in Jesus as the Messiah.

Many Jews today believe that Jesus is the Messiah. Many have converted to Chrisitianity or become affiliated with what is known as the Messianic Judaism movement. Conservative Jewish scholars have embraced Jesus as at least a plausible candidate for the Jewish Messiah. For example, Daniel Boyarin, the Taubman Professor of Talmudic Culture and Rhetoric at the University of California, Berkeley, argues in his book The Jewish Gospels: The Story of the Jewish Christ (2012) that "[t]he coming of the Messiah...was fully imagined, in detail, in ancient Jewish texts."[5]

Skepticism to Jesus is not entirely unmerited given that the expectations for his advent are at least mildly uncertain. Among early prospective converts, we also note that there were at least 11 people who had monarchic and possibly messianic aspirations; people who would have likely also claimed, along with Jesus, that they were the Jewish Messiah.[2]:80

How well does Jesus hold up to these messianic requirements? What other issues must be dealt with when establishing Jesus as the Messiah? How does the Book of Mormon play into convincing Jew and Gentile that Jesus is the Christ? This article attempts to answer these questions.

A Few Interpretive Considerations

We first need to consider some ground rules for the discussion since, with different ground rules, the conclusions we arrive at become drastically different. Exactly what the author means by that will be explained.

Double Fulfillment for Prophecy?

One of the major disagreements that Jews and Christians have over the interpretation of the Hebrew Bible and especially as it pertains to the question of Jesus’ messiaship is whether or not a prophecy can have multiple fulfillments. The theological idea is often known as dual fulfillment. Let’s take Isaiah 7:14 as our example.

Isaiah 7:14 is one of the most oft-cited and oft-debated passages of scripture as it regards Jesus. The text reads:

14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.

Jews and Christians debate two specific issues as it regards this passage:

  1. The first is whether or not the word “virgin” here is an accurate transaltion of the Hebrew almah. Jews who reject Jesus as Messiah claim that almah simply means young woman rather than virgin.
  2. The second is whether the prophecy can have two fulfillments because the prophecy could refer to King Hezekiah who was contemporary with Isaiah.

We’ll disregard the first issue for now. It has been more thoroughly explored elsewhere.[6]

The second issue is one that is crucial for settling the debate of Jesus' messiahship.

Author David Jeremiah, summarizes the seven criteria of dual prophecy discerned by biblical scholars and theologians of his time.[7]

  1. In double reference prophecy, the first fulfillment of the prophecy usually is found in a person or event close in time to the prophetic utterance.
  2. In double reference prophecy, the first fulfillment is usually only a partial fulfillment of the total prophetic message.
  3. In double reference prophecy, the ultimate fulfillmentis usually found in the person of Christ or the affairs of His kingdom. "Double fulfillment is particularly true of the predictions. . .concerning the Babylonian Captivity, the event of the day of the Lord, the return from Babylon, the worldwide dispersion of Israel, and their future regathering from all the corners of the earth."[8]
  4. In double reference prophecy, the first fulfillment is usually temporal, whereas, the ultimate fulfillment may be spiritual or eternal.
  5. In double reference prophecy, part of the prophetic message may be fulfilled close at hand, and that fulfillment in turn becomes an- other prophecy. A. J. Gordon says, "Prophecy has no sooner become history, than history in turn becomes prophecy."[9]
  6. In double reference prophecy, two or more prophecies may be grouped together in one area of vision, although they are really at different distances in fulfillment.
  7. In double reference prophecy, observations 5 and 6 are usually found to be working in the same passage.

One Figure, Two Advents

We will necessarily be taking the position that the Messianic prophecies of the Old Testament. GotQuestions.org, a Christian educational and apologetics website, states the following regarding whether the Old Testament prophesies of a second coming of the Messiah. We appreciate their analysis as it stands and will simply quote it as it stands. We believe it is sufficient material to at least argue that the one figure, two advent perspective is a valid and possible interpretation of Old Testament texts.

The Old Testament does prophesy the second coming of Christ, also referred to as the second advent of the Messiah. Some Old Testament prophecies concern the first advent, when Christ was born as a human being. Others concern the second advent, which is the ultimate triumph of this Messiah. It’s important to remember that prophecy does not describe the future in the same detail as history describes the past. So, while the prophecies of the Old Testament certainly describe both the first and second advents, most early interpretations of these prophecies melded them into a single event. Particularly during the years leading up to Jesus’ birth, it was assumed Messiah would be a political/military figure with an immediate worldly kingdom (Luke 19:11). In the light of Jesus’ ministry, it is possible to understand the true purpose of Christ and the real nature of His kingdom.

A careful look at Old Testament prophecies shows an underlying assumption of two advents. Micah 5:2 and Isaiah 7:14 predict the first advent. Separately, Isaiah 53:8–9 predicts a suffering and dying Messiah, who will be given life and greatness according to Isaiah 53:11–12. Daniel 9:26 describes the Messiah being killed after His appearance. At the same time, prophets such as Zechariah (Zechariah 12:10) say this same “pierced” Messiah will be seen again by His enemies. So the clues are there.

Many Old Testament prophecies foretell the ultimate triumph of Christ, which will occur at the second advent. These include statements from the books of Zechariah (Zechariah 9:14–15; 12:10–14; 13:1; 9:14–15); Amos (Amos 9:11–15); Jeremiah (Jeremiah 30:18; 32:44; 33:11, 26); and Joel (Joel 3:1); which describe the Messiah coming in triumph to lead Israel into salvation. Note that these are in the context of passages such as Deuteronomy 30:3–5 and so are predictions of the time of Messiah’s final victory.

Also, Scripture records Jesus making direct comparisons to Old Testament prophecies when making His own claims to a second advent. For example, His words in Matthew 24:31 and Mark 13:27 parallel the descriptions of Isaiah 52:15 and Isaiah 59—62.

All in all, the Hebrew Scriptures indicate that the Promised One would appear, be cut off, and then reappear in victory. The first advent has occurred; the second is still future. Both the New and Old Testaments predict a second advent of the Messiah.[10]

Open Timeframe for Prophecy Fulfillment

John Tvedtnes observed the following in the relation of critics of Joseph Smith and their biased interpretations of his prophecies. He stresses that the question of timeframe is crucial to keeping faith in Joseph. We argue that the same principles apply to Christians who wish to believe that Jesus is the Messiah of the Hebrew Bible.

Those who criticize Joseph Smith for uttering prophecies whose time they believe has passed are reminiscent of the unbelievers in the Book of Mormon “who began to say that the time was past for the words to be fulfilled.” (3 Nephi 1:5) Isaiah (5:19) wrote of those who would say, “Let him [the Lord] make speed, and hasten his work, that we may see it: and let the counsel of the Holy One of Israel draw nigh and come, that we may know it!”
In response, we note that Isaiah (55:8) wrote, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither your ways my ways, saith the Lord.” God’s reckoning of time cannot be compared to that of man. Peter wrote that “one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day” (2 Peter 3:8; compare with Psalm 90:4). The context of Peter’s statement is that “there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, and saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation” (2 Peter 3:3-4). After reminding his readers that the Lord does not reckon time as men do, he adds, “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. But the day of the Lord shall come as a thief in the night” (2 Peter 3:9-10).
Most of Joseph Smith’s prophecies do not give a timeframe for their fulfillment. Others indicate that the events will occur “soon.” But from God’s viewpoint, “soon” can be a rather long time. The Bible has a number of prophecies of things that the prophets said would happen “soon” but which did not, in fact, occur for a century or more. For example, Isaiah, in his prophecy concerning the destruction of Babylon (Isaiah 13:1, 19-20) wrote that “the day of the Lord is at hand” (Isaiah 13:6). Yet Babylon was not even conquered until 539 B.C., a century and a half after Isaiah, while its destruction came even later.
Isaiah had also prophesied concerning the actions of Assyria against Israel and Judah: “Be not afraid of the Assyrian: he shall smite thee with a rod, and shall lift up his staff against thee, after the manner of Egypt. For yet a little while, and the indignation shall cease, and mine anger in their destruction” (Isaiah 10:24-25). Israel was taken captive by Assyria in 722 B.C. and the Assyrian king Sennacherib attacked Judah in 701 B.C. But it was not until 605 B.C.-a century later-that Assyria was defeated by a coalition of Babylonians and Medes. In this case, the prophet’s “little while” meant more than a century, making the prophet’s counsel “be not afraid” meaningless to his audience.
Zephaniah, writing of the destruction of Judah, wrote that “the day of the Lord is at hand” (1:7) and that “the great day of the Lord is near, it is near, and it hasteth greatly” (1:14). This was written in the days of King Josiah (1:1), nearly a century before Judah was taken captive by the Babylonians. Joel used similar words, saying, “the day of the Lord is at hand” (1:15) and “the day of the Lord cometh, for it is nigh at hand” (2:1).
The New Testament Apostles used similar terminology. Jesus showed John “things which must shortly come to pass” (Revelation 1:1; 22:6). After nearly two millennia, most of the things which John saw in the vision have not come to pass despite the fact that Jesus said they would occur “shortly.” In Revelation 12:12, John wrote that the devil has “but a short time” until he is bound when the millennium begins (compare with Romans 16:20), but the devil has still not been bound and the millennial reign of Christ has not yet come.
James wrote, “Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord… Be ye also patient…for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh…behold, the judge standeth before the door” (James 5:7-9). Yet Jesus has not yet come to judge and reign. Peter was even stronger than James when he wrote, “But the end of all things is at hand” (1 Peter 4:7). Obviously, “all things” have not yet ended, despite the nearly two millennia that have passed since these words were written. If prophecies uttered thousands of years ago by biblical prophets remain unfulfilled, can we not give Joseph Smith a century or two?
In some prophetic utterances, Joseph Smith used timeframe terminology taken from the Bible itself. For example, the term “near, even at the doors” (D&C 110:16) derives from Jesus’ statement in Matthew 24:33. In D&C 100:13, 15, we read of “a little season,” a term coming from Revelation 6:11, where the martyrs are told that they will “rest yet for a little season.” The statement is made after the opening of the fifth seal and prior to the occurrence of the many events scheduled for the sixth and seventh seals before the promise is fulfilled. The statement in D&C 106:4 (“the coming of the Lord draweth nigh”) resembles the one in Revelation 22:20 (see also 3:11; 22:7), where John quotes Jesus as saying, “Surely I come quickly.” The century and a half that separate us from Joseph Smith are nothing compared to the nearly two millennia since John wrote those words.
One critic took Joseph Smith to task because he indicated that Moroni had said the prophecies in Isaiah 11 and Joel 2:28-32 were “about to be fulfilled” (Joseph Smith-History 1:40-41). The same critic also attacked the prophecy in D&C 88:87-a paraphrase of the Joel prophecy, which says that in “not many days” the moon would be bathed in blood, the sun would refuse to give its light, and the stars would be cast down-none of which has yet occurred. It is hard to understand how the man could condemn Joseph Smith as a false prophet and yet continue to accept Joel, who uttered the same prophecy two and a half millennia ago. Moreover, the version found in D&C 88:87 is closer to Christ’s paraphrase of the Joel passage (Matthew 24:29). Jesus said that “this generation shall not pass” until these words were fulfilled (Matthew 24:34).
If this prophecy makes Joseph Smith a false prophet, then what of Jesus and Peter, who paraphrased Joel 2:10, 28-32; 3:15? What of Joel himself, or of Isaiah, who used similar wording when he spoke of the coming attack on Babylon (which occurred in 539 B.C.) by the Medes (see verse 17) and Persians (Isaiah 13:9-10, 13; compare with 24:23). Christ said that there were some living in his day who would not die before the fulfillment of the prophecy. Peter said that it was fulfilled on the day of Pentecost. To John, however (Revelation 6:12-17), the event was yet future.[11] Obviously, the expression “not many days” cannot be taken as literally as the critics tend to take it. Prophecies are accomplished in God’s time, not man’s.
As for Jesus’ statement that these events would happen during his generation, Joseph Smith handled the problem by saying that Jesus was referring to the “generation” in which the signs would begin (Joseph Smith-Matthew 1:34). Those who reject Joseph as a “false prophet” are left with the quandary of either believing Jesus to have falsely prophesied or of accepting at least one teaching from Joseph Smith. But, from another point of view, we know that there are people who were alive in Jesus day (and also in Joseph’s) who have not died, namely, the Apostle John (John 21:20-24; D&C 7) and the three Nephite disciples (3 Nephi 28:4-9).[12]
Another prophecy to be fulfilled in “this generation” is the building of a temple in Jackson County, Missouri (D&C 84:3-5). This passage has been highly criticized because the temple has yet to be built. But the words are the same as those used by Jesus nearly 2,000 years ago concerning events that have not yet occurred. The double standard of the critics allows them to accept biblical statements without question, while denouncing Joseph Smith as a false prophet.[13][14]

Jesus' Fulfillment of Jewish Messianic Expectations

He would be a preexistent figure with some divine qualities

Latter-day Saints recognize that Jesus "was the Great Jehovah of the Old Testament, the Messiah of the New."[15]

Jesus proclaimed himself as God of the Old Testament in a couple of places in the New Testament. Nowhere so directly as John 8:56–59. There, the Jews ask him directly who he makes himself out to be: whether a prophet, God, or some other figure. Jesus tells them that "our father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad. Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham? Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am." The Jews then pick up stones to stone him and Jesus is chased out of the temple.[16] The reason that Jesus was chased and about to be stoned was because he was declaring that he was the great "I AM" of the Old Testament: Jehovah (Exodus 3:14). Jesus tells the Nephites that "I am he that gave the law, and I am he who covenanted with my people Israel; therefore, the law in me is fulfilled, for I have come to fulfil the law; therefore it hath an end."[17] This further confirms him as Jehovah. The Book of Moses shows Jesus Christ in the premortal council with God assuming great authority and power.[18]

All People Would Worship Him, He Would Be A King, He Would Reestablish the Davidic Dynasty, His Kingdom Would Be Everlasting, He Would Have Authority Over All Nations, He Would Lead Israel, He Would Overthrow Israel's Enemies

Most Christians, including Latter-day Saints, believe that the seeds of these requirements have already been sown with the Savior's first coming or advent to the earth but that they will be consummated at the Savior's Second Coming.

Jesus Christ came to earth in part to establish a kingdom on earth. Daniel 7 prophesies of a kingdom that would be set up and that this kingdom would roll forth like a stone cut from the mountain. Nothing would overcome the kingdom. This kingdom was the Savior's church (Matthew 16:17–19). Joseph Smith understood himself as an agent of continuing the growth of the true kingdom of God on earth rather than being the first agent to start the kingdom of God on earth.[19]

The Savior, when on earth, ministered to the people of Israel-Palestine. He also ministered to the Nephites and has commissioned his disciples to take his Gospel to every creature (Matthew 28:19–20; Mark 16:15–16). The Kingdom is slowly growing until it can consume all kingdoms.

The Savior will eventually come and be crowned king over the earth (Revelation 19:13,16; Articles of Faith 1:10). He will overthrow Israel's enemies and restore the Davidic dynasty given he is the Son of David (Matthew 1:1). The Book of Mormon connects people to the "house of David" which will be the future Davidic kingdom under Jesus Christ (2 Nephi 17:2, 13; 19:7).

He Would Judge the Wicked

There may be two senses in which Jesus will judge the wicked. First, at his second coming, he will burn and destroy all those that he judges to be wicked (Joel 2:31; Malachi 4:1; Matthew 24:6–7; Joseph Smith–Matthew 1:28–31; Joseph Smith–History 1:36–41).

Second, the Savior will participate in the final judgement over mankind (John 5:22; Romans 14:10; 3 Nephi 27:16; Doctrine & Covenants 76:68) where all mankind will be judged according to the desires of their hearts and their works whether those desires and works were good or evil.

He Would Be Associated With Righteousness

Jesus is considered the spotless or sinless lamb that was sent to the slaughter for our sins. There are approximately 90 references in the Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, and Pearl of Great Price to Christ as the Lamb. There are many references to Jesus as the Lamb of God in the Bible.

He Would Heal the Sick, Restore Sight to the Blind, and Raise the Dead

There are numerous instances in Jesus' ministry of him healing the sick (Matthew 4:23; 9:35). He restored sight to the blind (Matthew 9:27–34; 12:22). Jesus raised the dead. He raised Jairus' daughter (Luke 8:49–56), Lazarus (John 11:1–44), and the widow of Nain's son (Luke 7:11–17).

In the Book of Mormon, Jesus heals the all the Nephites' sick including the lame, halt, deaf, and blind (3 Nephi 17:7–9). He also is said to have raised a man from the dead (3 Nephi 26:15). This is speculated to be Timothy, brother of Nephi (3 Nephi 19:4).

Other Messianic Expectations

There were other expectations that certain Jews had of the Messiah. One of these was that Jesus would be a triumphant warrior over Jerusalem's enemies. Thus when Jesus came as a humble carpenter's son born in Nazareth, many Jews didn't believe his claims.

Isaiah 7 and Christ as Born of a Virgin

This passage in Isaiah 7:14 and its proper translation is one of the most contested in all of scripture. The verses have been crucial for Christians who want to support Matthew's use of the passage in his Gospel to theologically support the notion that the Savior would be born of Mary, who was a virgin. Jews and the majority of biblical scholars contend, and not without merit, that the proper translation of the verse is to have merely "young woman" instead of "virgin". What's more, Christians have needed to contend that prophecies can have more than one fulfillment since the verses could be referring to King Hezekiah in context. Christians want them to also cover Christ. Some of our critics contend, based on this mistranslation, that the idea of the virgin birth is anachronistic to the time of Nephi, but we have responded to that in depth elsewhere on the Wiki. The issue of translation has been explored elsewhere by non-Latter-day Saint Christian scholars as well as Latter-day Saint scholars.[6] Perhaps the best commentary was offered by the editors of netbible.org who observed that the Hebrew term translated as "virgin" (ʿalmah) most often refers to just a young woman who has reached sexual maturity, but that it can be used to refer to a virgin (e.g. Gen 24:43). Thus, one's view of the doctrine of virgin birth is unaffected by disputes over translation.[20]

Isaiah 53 and Christ as the Suffering Servant

Along with Isaiah 7, Isaiah 53 is also one of the most contested passages of scripture. Abinadi in the Book of Mormon interprets this passage as referring to Jesus (Mosiah 14:1–12; 15:1).

Interpretation for this chapter varies depending on the textual source. Even in the Hebrew Bible there are different figures that are identified as the suffering servant.

Marvin Sweeney summarizes the evidence in The New Oxford Annotated Bible:

Talmudic tradition identifies the servant with Moses, who suffered throughout the wilderness journey (b. Sotah 14a), and early Christian tradition identifies the servant with Jesus (Acts 8:32–35). Second Isaiah identifies the servant with Israel (49.3), although the servant's mission is to restore Israel and Jacob to the LORD (49.5). Other figures identified with the servant include the prophet Jeremiah, who was persecuted throughout his life; King Josiah, who was killed by Pharaoh Neco at Megiddo (2 Kings 23.29–30); and King Jehoiachin, who was exiled to Babylon (2 Kings 24.10–16).[21]

Wikipedia also documents that the servant is also identified in some Jewish textual sources as Rabbi Akiva (y. Shekalim 5:1), The Jewish Messiah (though not Jesus), Jeremiah (Saadia Gaon), or A Righteous Israelite Remnant.[22]

Jesus remains a plausible candidate for fulfilling this prophecy whether under single fulfillment or double fulfillment interpretive rules.


Notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 Trevan G. Hatch, A Stranger in Jerusalem: Seeing Jesus as Jew (Eugene, OR: Wipf and Stock, 2019), 105.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Trevan G. Hatch, "Messianism and Jewish Messiahs in the New Testament Period," in New Testament History, Culture, and Society: A Background to the Texts of the New Testament, ed. Lincoln H. Blumell (Provo, UT: Religious Studies Center, Brigham Young University; Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Company, 2019).
  3. John J. Collins, “Jesus, Messianism, and the Dead Sea Scrolls,” in Qumran-Messianism, ed. James H. Charlesworth, Hermann Lichtenberger, and Gerbern S. Oegema (Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 1998), 102.
  4. Joshua M. Matson, "The Fourth Gospel and Expectations of the Jewish Messiah,'" in Thou Art the Christ: The Son of the Living God, The Person and Work of Jesus in the New Testament, ed. Eric D. Huntsman, Lincoln H. Blumell, and Tyler J. Griffin (Religious Studies Center, Brigham Young University; Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2018), 177.
  5. Daniel C. Peterson, "Messianic ideas in Judaism," Deseret News, June 14, 2012.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Garrett Kell, “Is Jesus Really the Virgin–Born Child in Isaiah 7?” The Gospel Coalition, May 9, 2020, https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/jesus-virgin-child-isaiah/; See also some of the discussion in Donald W. Parry, “An Approach to Isaiah Studies,” Interpreter: A Journal of Latter-day Saint Faith and Scholarship 34 (2020): 246–55.
  7. David Jeremiah, "The Principle of Double Fulfillment in Interpreting Prophecy," Grace Journal, 16.
  8. Charles L. Feinberg, Premillennialism or Amillennialism (Grand Rapids: Zondervan Publishing House, 1937), 38.
  9. A. H. Strong, Systematic Theology, 3 vols. (Philadelphia: Griffith and Rowland Press, 1907), 3:138.
  10. "Does the Old Testament truly predict a second advent of the Messiah?" GotQuestions, accessed December 5, 2022, https://www.gotquestions.org/second-advent-Messiah.html.
  11. John based the wording of his prophecy on Isaiah 13:9-13; 2:10 and Hosea 10:8; compare with Luke 23:30.
  12. Translated beings from previous dispensations had also not died. These include Enoch and his people (Genesis 5:24; Moses 7:69), Melchizedek and his people (JST Genesis 14:32-34), and Elijah (2 Kings 2:9-12).
  13. Interestingly, the prophecy in D&C 84:5 was fulfilled at the dedication of the Kirtland Temple in March, 1836, according to the journals of many then present.
  14. John A. Tvedtnes, "The Nature of Prophets and Prophecy," FAIR Publications, accessed December 5, 2022, https://www.fairlatterdaysaints.org/archive/publications/the-nature-of-prophets-and-prophecy-2.
  15. The Living Christ, paragraph 2.
  16. John 8:53–59
  17. 3 Nephi 15:5
  18. Moses 4:1–4
  19. Daniel 2:44; Doctrine & Covenants 65:2; 138:44. For persuasive commentary on Daniel 2:44 as a reference to the latter-days and the coming forth of the Church, see Brian D. Stubbs, Changes in Languages from Nephi to Now (Blanding, Utah: Four Corners Digital Design, 2016), 27–28. Quoted in full in Robert S. Boylan, "Brian Stubbs on Daniel 2:36--47 and the Restoration," Scriptural Mormonism, March 26, 2018, https://scripturalmormonism.blogspot.com/2018/03/brian-stubbs-on-daniel-236-47-and.html. For important intepretive nuance given to Doctrine & Covenants 65:2, see Ben Spackman, "Rough Stone Rolling: Daniel 2, The Church, and Joseph Smith," Ben Spackman: Historian of Religion, Science, and Biblical Interpretation, November 5, 2022, https://benspackman.com/2022/11/gospel-doctrine-lesson-46-daniel-2/.
  20. NET Bible, “Isaiah 7” footnote 25.
  21. Marvin Sweeney, "Isaiah," in The New Oxford Annotated Bible, ed. Michael D. Coogan, 5th ed. (New York: Oxford University Press, 2018), 1051n52.13–53.12.
  22. "Isaiah 53," Wikipedia, accessed December 5, 2022, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Isaiah_53#Interpretive_Options_Concerning_the_Servant's_Identity.