7. The L-RD'S Anointed
For I am the L-rd, your G-d, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior; I have given Egypt as your ransom, Ethiopia and Seba instead of you.
Truly, You are a G-d Who hides Yourself, O G-d of Israel, the Savior.
You shall suck the milk of the nations, and you shall suck the breast of kings; and you shall know that I, the L-rd, am your Savior, and the Mighty One of Jacob is your Redeemer.
O Hope of Israel, its Savior in time of trouble....
These verses state unequivocally that although G-d employs emissaries to come to our physical and spiritual aid, He Himself is the Ultimate Savior and Redeemer of the Jewish people:
But Israel is saved by the L-rd with everlasting salvation; you shall not be ashamed or confounded for all eternity.
However, one should not confuse the following Hebrew terms:
Goel - Redeemer
Moshia - Savior
Moshiach - Messiah
We are concerned only with the title "Messiah," which Jews and Christians agree will be applied to the Promised One. In the Hebrew Bible, "moshiach" always means "anointed":
He gives His king great salvation and shows mercy to His anointed, to David, and to his seed, forevermore.
Thus says the L-rd to His anointed, to Cyrus....
"Messiah" and "anointed" are synonymous because the Messiah will be an anointed king. In fact, in the Biblical period anointing was used to consecrate all sacred officials:
And the priest that is highest among his brethren, upon whose head the anointing oil is poured, and who has been consecrated to put on the garments....
I Kings 19:15--16
And the L-rd said to [Elijah], "....Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abel--meholah, you shall anoint as prophet in your place."
II Kings 9:6
And [the prophet] arose and went into the house; and he poured the oil on [Jehu's] head and said to him: "Thus says the L-rd, the G-d of Israel: I have anointed you king over the people of the L-rd, over Israel."
Missionaries use the verses with which we began this chapter to "prove" that the Messiah is G-d Himself in the person of Jesus. When reading the following passages, it is important to remember that he was never anointed, as he himself admitted:
You did not anoint my head with oil, but she has anointed my feet with ointment.
Why are the nations in an uproar and the peoples muttering in vain? The kings of the earth have stood up and rulers have taken counsel together against the L-rd, and against His anointed.
This passage appears in Acts 4:25--26 in reference to Jesus. Yet King David, the writer of this Psalm, was this anointed king:
I have found David, My servant; with My holy oil have I anointed him. So that My hand shall ever abide with him, My arm also shall strengthen him.
The Hebrew Bible records that kings and rulers constantly took counsel against King David:
II Samuel 5:17
When the Philistines heard that they had anointed David king over Israel, all the Philistines went up in search of David; but David heard of it and went down to the stronghold.
II Samuel 8:3
David also defeated Hadadezer, the son of Rehob, king of Zobah, as he went to restore his power at the river Euphrates.
This continuation of the Psalm under discussion further illustrates that David was speaking on his own behalf:
I will tell of the decree of the L-rd; He said to me: "You are My son; today I have begotten you."
By changing "son" to "Son," the New Testament quotes this verse as if G-d were speaking to Jesus (Acts 13:33)! Yet David is the "son" here:
Psalms 89:20, 27--28
Then You spoke in a vision to Your pious ones...."[David] shall call to Me: You are my Father, my G-d, and the Rock of my salvation. I also will appoint him firstborn, the highest of the kings of the earth."
Ask of Me and I will give the nations for your inheritance, and the ends of the earth for your possession.
After many wars, this promise to David was indeed fulfilled:
II Samuel 7:1
Now when the king [David] dwelt in his house, and the L-rd had given him rest from all his enemies round about....
I Chronicles 14:17
And the fame of David went out into all lands; and the L-rd brought the fear of him upon all nations.
A Psalm of David: To You, O L-rd, I call; my Rock, be not deaf to me; lest You be silent to me and I become like those who go down to the pit. Hear the voice of my supplications as I cry to You for help, as I lift up my hands toward Your holy Sanctuary. Draw me not away with the wicked, and with evildoers who speak peace with their neighbors while mischief is in their hearts. Give them according to their deeds, and according to the evil of their endeavors, give them after the work of their hands; render to them what they deserve.
As David's own words reveal immediately before this last verse, he is speaking on his own behalf.
The anointed King David concludes:
Psalms 28:6, 8
Blessed be the L-rd, because He has heard the voice of my supplications....The L-rd is a strength to them [Israel], and He is the stronghold of salvation for His anointed.
Missionaries claim that Jesus is here asking for vengeance upon his enemies. However, in the New Testament he asks for forgiveness, not vengeance:
And Jesus said: "Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do"....
The spirit of the L-rd, G-d, is upon me, because the L-rd has anointed me to bring good tidings to the humble; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty for the captives and the opening of the prison for them that are bound.
Isaiah, an anointed prophet, was speaking about himself. He fulfilled the Divine mission described here, in part, by foretelling the great events of the Messianic Era:
[The Jewish people] shall rebuild the ancient ruins, they shall raise up the former devastations; they shall repair the ruined cities, the ravages of many generations. And strangers shall stand and pasture your sheep, and foreigners shall be your plowmen and your vinedressers. And you shall be called "priests of the L-rd"; men shall call you "ministers of our G-d"; you shall eat the wealth of the nations, and in their riches you shall glory.
Although these Messianic prophecies remained unfulfilled throughout Jesus' life, the New Testament depicts him reading this verse under discussion in a synagogue in his hometown and concluding:
Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.
Jesus then declared the congregants unworthy of seeing him perform miracles. Angered by his Messianic pretense, his neighbors tried to kill him:
When they heard this, all in the synagogue were filled with wrath. And they rose up and put him out of the city, and led him to the brow of the hill on which their city was built, that they might throw him down headlong. But passing through the midst of them he went away.
This hostility toward Jesus resurfaces elsewhere:
The Jews took up stones again to stone him.
Again they tried to arrest him, but he escaped from their hands.
These verses reveal to us the real Jesus: a man who was despised by those who knew him best! Even his closest disciples deserted him at the first sign of trouble:
...then all the disciples forsook him, and fled.
Seventy weeks are decreed upon your people and upon your holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sin, and to atone for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal vision and prophet, and to anoint the most holy place. Know, therefore, and discern that from the going forth of the word to restore and build Jerusalem until an anointed prince, there shall be seven weeks; then for sixty--two weeks, it shall be built again, with broad place and moat, but in troublous times. And after the sixty--two weeks, an anointed one shall be cut off and be no more; and the people of a prince who shall come shall destroy the city and the Sanctuary; and its end shall be with a flood; and until the end of the war, desolations are determined. And he shall make a firm covenant with many for one week; and for half the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the offering to cease....
To understand a passage, one must always study it in context. In the beginning of Daniel chapter 9, we find:
In the first year of Darius' reign, I, Daniel, considered in the books the number of years about which the word of the L-rd came to Jeremiah the prophet, which must pass before the end of the ruins of Jerusalem, namely seventy years.
Daniel was living in Babylon in the exile after its army destroyed Jerusalem and the First Temple. :
II Kings 25:21
...so Judah was carried away out of his land.
The prophecies Daniel was considering were:
Then after seventy years are completed, I will punish the king of Babylon and that nation, the land of the Chaldeans, for their iniquity, says the L-rd, and I will make it an everlasting wasteland.
For thus says the L-rd: "When seventy years are finished for Babylon, I will remember you and fulfill for you My promise and bring you back to this place."
Thus says the L-rd: "Behold, I will restore the captivity of Jacob's tents and have compassion on his dwellings; and the city shall be rebuilt upon its mound, and the palace shall stand on its proper place."
In Daniel 9:3--20 Daniel prays for the Jewish people, praising G-d and imploring Him to end the exile and rebuild the Temple and Jerusalem. He concludes:
While I was speaking in prayer, the man Gabriel [an angel], whom I had seen in the vision at the beginning, came to me in swift flight about the time of the evening sacrifice. He made me understand, and talked with me, and said: "O Daniel, I have now come forth to give you wisdom and understanding. At the beginning of your supplications, a word went forth, and I have come to tell it to you, for you are greatly beloved; therefore, consider the word, understand the vision."
The angel Gabriel then explained the major events that would occur during the first 490 years after the destruction of the First Temple:
Seventy weeks are decreed upon your people and upon your holy city....
A "week" is a seven--year period:
And you shall number seven weeks of years, seven times seven years; and there shall be to you the days of seven weeks of years, even forty--nine years.
Therefore, "seventy weeks" equals 490 years.
...to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sin, and to atone for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness....
During this 490--year grace period, the Jewish people could have proven its loyalty to G-d and His Torah by repenting. Had the Jews done so, the Messiah would have ushered in the Messianic Era and these blissful promises would have been fulfilled. Unfortunately, this opportunity was squandered. Consequently, 490 years later, the then--rebuilt Temple was destroyed and they were again exiled from the Holy Land.
...and to seal vision and prophet....
During this 490--year period, vision and prophecy ceased with Malachi.
...and to anoint the most holy place.
This was the building of the Second Temple.
Know, therefore, and discern that from the going forth of the word to restore and build Jerusalem until an anointed prince, there shall be seven weeks....
Seven weeks of years after the destruction of the First Temple, this anointed prince was revealed:
Thus says the L-rd to His anointed, to Cyrus....
When Cyrus, king of Persia, conquered Babylon, where the Jews were exiled after the destruction of the First Temple, G-d chose him to proclaim their liberty:
I have aroused Cyrus in righteousness, and I will straighten all his ways; he shall build My city and set My exiles free, neither for price nor for reward, says the L-rd of hosts.
This prophecy was fulfilled:
Ezra 1:1, 3
Now in the first year of Cyrus, king of Persia, in order that the word of the L-rd by the mouth of Jeremiah might be accomplished, the L-rd stirred up the spirit of Cyrus, king of Persia, and he made a proclamation...."Whoever there is among you of all His people, his G-d be with him and let him go up to Jerusalem, which is in Judah, and build the House of the L-rd, the G-d of Israel; He is the G-d Who is in Jerusalem."
...then for sixty--two weeks, it shall be built again, with broad place and moat, but in troublous times.
Jerusalem endured this entire period, despite the troubles caused by the surrounding enemy nations.
And after the sixty--two weeks, an anointed one shall be cut off and be no more....
This second "anointed one" was King Agrippa II of Judah. At the destruction of Jerusalem and the slaughter and exile of its inhabitants. his rule came to an abrupt end:
Now the number of those that were carried captive during this whole war was 97,000; as was the number of those that died during the whole siege, 1,100,000,Josephus Wars, book 6, chapter 9, section 3.
...and the people of a prince who shall come shall destroy the city and the Sanctuary....
Jerusalem and the Second Temple were destroyed by the Roman army, which was under the command of this third prince, Vespasian, the king of Rome.
...and its end shall be with a flood; and until the end of the war, desolations are determined.
Jerusalem's end was like a flood. Compare:
But with an overrunning flood, He will make a full end of its place....
And he shall make a firm covenant with many for one week; and for half the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the offering to cease....
Vespasian made a peace agreement with the Jewish leaders in the seventieth "week," which concluded the total period decreed (9:24). However, the Romans violated this covenant after the first half week (3.5 years)112and prohibited sacrifices113.
According to the Hebrew Bible, these weeks of years begin with the destruction of the First Temple. Therefore, since Jesus died about 33 C.E. -thirty--five years (five weeks of years) before the destruction of the Second Temple-he could not have been any one of these three individuals.
CALCULATION OF DATES
The "70 years" prophecy
3338115 to 3408
70 weeks (490 years)
3338 to 3828
Of these 70 weeks:
7 weeks (52 years)
3338 to 3390
62 weeks (438 years)
3390 to 3828
The 70th week
3821 to 3828
THEIR "70 WEEKS" EXPOSED
The reader is informed that only non-Jewish historical dates, the same that missionaries accept, are quoted in Section 2. At the end of the First Temple era, they were 165 years earlier than traditional Jewish chronology. Because of this great divergence, only the years from Creation as recorded in the Hebrew Scriptures was referenced in Section 1.
DANIEL 9:25 -26
"Know therefore and understand that from the going forth of the command to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be 7 weeks, and 60 and 2 weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times. And after 60 and 2 weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself; and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary;..."
a. This is the present day Kings James translation. It is the most popular Bible among missionaries. The comma
after 7 weeks and a colon after 60 and 2 weeks is just what they asked for - literally! Very tellingly, these
punctuation marks are different from the ones found in the original 1611 C.E. version. There, the 70 weeks are
divided into 3 separate weeks of time 7, 62 and 1, duplicating the traditional Jewish version:
"....unto the Messiah the Prince shall be 7 weeks; and 60 and 2 weeks, the street shall be built again,..."
b. Missionaries claim that the "7 weeks" (49 years) are separated from the "62 weeks" because that was how
long it took to build either the Temple, wall or city during the reign of Artaxerxes. But this is another bluff. The
Temple was rebuilt over a 20 year period (Ezra 3:8 -10, 6:15) 536 - 516 B.C.E. while Cyrus and Darius were kings.
This was years before the reign of Artaxerxes even began! The wall was completed in 52 days (Nehemiah 6:15)
in 445 B.C.E. There is no record as to when the city was completed.
Other missionaries claim that there is no separation, just one period of 69 weeks, plus the 70th week. But this
can not true. In the Hebrew Scriptures, sum totals are written only with their own numbers, 69 would be 60 and 9 or
9 and 60. Compare Ezra 2:4-5 in the original Hebrew.
c. The decree "...to restore and to build Jerusalem..." was the one that started the 70 weeks of years.
To build (Livnot) - manual labor. To restore (L'hashiv) - returning the exiled Jews:
Jeremiah 12:15 "....I will restore them, each one to his inheritance and each one to his land".
The reference to the street and wall only symbolized the larger work of rebuilding the city. It is not a criteria
per se in identifying the real decree.
d. The Hebrew word mashiach has a double meaning and translation. Both anointed and Messiah are possible.
It appears in the Hebrew Bible 39 times. The Greek Septuagint translation completed in 246 B.C.E. understood
it to mean anointed (xpiotoc), exclusively, as does traditional Judaism.
e. In the original Hebrew text "the" before "mashiach" and before "Prince" does not exist. The insertion of them
was to give the impression that the one and distinct Redeemer was being referred to.
f. Conversely, "the" does appear before the second 60 and 2 weeks, i.e. "And after the 60 and 2 weeks shall..."
but to conceal that our passage is foretelling 3 periods of time, 7, 62 and 1 week of years, it was omitted. This
was done to make it seem as if 7 and 62 was a single time period of 69 weeks of years ( 69 x 7 ) = 483 years.
This was the amount of time that is suppose to have elapsed from when Artaxerxes issued his decree until the
day Jesus the "Messiah" died and was "cut off". However, if this was correct, it would have said: "And after the
69 weeks shall Mashiach be cut off,..."
g. Their faulty translation also caused an abrupt stop after the 69th week, leaving the 70th week detached.
Their "solution" was to move back the end of the 69th week by several days, from the day Jesus died to Palm
Sunday. This week was then placed in an imaginary "time zone" or "gap" connecting the 69th week to the 70th.
h. "but not for himself" is not a translation, it's a message. "ve ein lo" in context means "and be no more".
Literally, it should be translated as "and he has not".
i. There are no punctuation marks in the original Hebrew Scriptures.
We saw in Section 1, that it was the decree of King Cyrus that was to be issued after the first 7 weeks of years.
He did so in the year 538 B.C.E. However, this date was too early to be the starting point for Jesus to be the
Messiah after their 483 years ended. This time period would have elapsed before he was even born. Therefore,
the later decree of Artaxerxes in 445 B.C.E. had to be chosen instead.
EZRA 4:21, 23
"Now issue a decree halting these people, this city shall not be built, until a decree shall be issued by me....
Missionaries are conspicuously silent about this incident, and for good reason, Besides stopping all construction
work for years, his decree in 445 B.C.E. came 93 years after the original decree by Cyrus. Also, it only allowed
timber be given to make beams for the Castle gates, city walls and Nehemiah's official residence (Nehemiah 2:8).
In contrast, being the real anointed prince, Cyrus' decree was very generous, as would be expected. He ordered
that the Temple be rebuilt and....
EZRA 1, 2:64-67
He granted all Jews the right to return to Jerusalem.
He returned 5,400 gold and silver Temple vessels that were stolen during the war.
42,360 Jews and 7,337 servants accepted his offer and returned.
They brought with them: 736 horses, 245 mules, 435 camels and 6,720 donkeys.
Artaxerxes' decree to give timber to the returned Jews working in Jerusalem was said:
Nehemiah 2:1 ....In the month of Nisan in the 20th year of Artaxerxes....
a. Scholars disagree which year it was issued in....445 B.C.E or 444 B.C.E
b. The day is lost. It is not written in the Hebrew Scriptures. There is no Jewish tradition about it nor is there a
general rule to follow when a date is not given. Anyway, it is a sign of despair for missionaries to quote, as
authoritative, our Oral Tradition, a body of information that rejects the notion that Jesus is G-d and the Messiah.
c. If this was really a directive leading exactly to Palm Sunday 32 C.E. then the all important day when it was
announced would have been written, so that we would know the starting date of this time prophecy.
d. Because of the confusion which day and year his command was issued, missionaries disagreed and formulated
several "computations" whose beginning and ending dates differed.
The word computations should be taken loosely. They are irregular and suspect. It came to be this way because
their 483 years from 445 B.C.E arrived at 39 C.E. A year too late for Jesus to have died in. Generally, they will not
tell you this because it would be obvious that their additional steps were needed only to enable them to end at an
They hide their real end year of 39 C.E by employing a triple digit multiplication of 69 x 7 x 360 = 173,880 days.
This 360 day "prophetic" year multiplier is said to have been in use during the Hebrew Bible era, although it is not
known in the Jewish religion.
They then divided these 173,880 days by the 365 day solar year. This resulted in their 483 years being reduced to
476 years and their 39 C.E end year becoming 32 C.E.
e. Furthermore, a calculation designed to reach the year that Jesus died in is doomed from the outset. THE YEAR
IS NOT KNOWN. Therefore, their computations can not be proven right or wrong. So why study and publicize them?
It is unknown because his crucifixion was only one of many thousands and it was not the monumental event one is
led to believe.
The above disputation was specifically written to reveal the flaws in the computation of Robert Anderson in 1894.
He has a starting date of March 14, 445 B.C.E and ends on Sunday, April 6, 32 C.E. But, since all of their
calculations share the same translation, interpretation and has Artaxerxes as their starting date, it equally applies
to each of them. The slight variations in their mathematical equations is of no consequence.
Dating New Testament events with true accuracy is not possible. Its information is too scant and vague. Outside
sources are also not definitive. Therefore, scholars can only state that:
Jesus was born between 6 and 4 B.C.E
His ministry / preaching began between 27 and 29 C.E
And lasted 1 to 3 years
Jesus died between 30 and 36 C.E, inclusive
ARTAXERXES' 7th YEAR DECREE
With these unknowns surrounding Jesus, one can see the recklessness in this other "70 weeks" calculationof theirs. Missionaries claim, without Scriptural evidence that Artaxerxes' decree was issued ".... in the 7th year of Artaxerxes the king...." (Ezra 7:7) and that it was from then that the 70 weeks of years began.
Historically, it is unknown whether his 7th year was in 458 B.C.E. or 457 B.C.E. The uncertainty here aswell as when his later decree was announced (Nehemiah 2:1 section 2 above) stems from a disagreement among the leading authorities as to when his reign began....465 B.C.E. or 464 B.C.E. But they agree that the day and month when this decree was given is not known.
The Hebrew Bible introduces this decree by stating "Now after these things in the reign of Artaxerxes kingof Persia,.... the king granted Ezra all his request,...." (Ezra 7:1-6). But if this decree really started the 490 year timeline directly to Jesus, then Scripture would have written "in the 7th year of," words that missionaries would have seized upon, instead of the vague "in the reign of." Also, why are we not told when and what "these things" were? Or what occurred between when the decree was announced and Ezra's departure to Jerusalem (Ezra 7:9-11)? Omissions that could have conclusively dated this decree.
Missionaries do not have an explanation for this blanket of silence at the exact point where they would expectthe Hebrew Bible to be explicit. Therefore, they can only say that his decree did not go into effect when it was signed, but later, after Ezra arrived in Jerusalem, because he needed to give it to the Persian government officials who did not know about it ! Besides the absurdity of their claim, there were details of the decree that needed to be accomplished immediately, even before the group were allowed to leave: 1. The decree said that any Jew who volunteered would be allowed to depart with the group (Ezra 7:13). 1496 men accepted the offer (Ezra 8:1-14). Women are not listed, but the children are (Ezra 8:21). 2. The silver and gold that the king "freely offered to the G-d of Israel" was to be taken with them (Ezra 7:15). 3. They were also ordered to gather and bring with them, the silver, gold and free-will offerings donated by the general population (Ezra 7:16). From what had to be done to satisfy the king, plus, the planning and preparation for caring for this large group of people travelling 4 months, must have taken a considerable amount of time. How long is unknown.
The Jews and Persian officials who were in Jerusalem needed to be informed of the decree quickly, so thatthey could facilitate the king's wishes before and after the group arrived. For instance, the decree specified that individuals working in the Temple be exempt from paying taxes (Ezra 7:24). The king did not need to wait until Ezra reached Jerusalem before it could be implemented, he had a fast and efficient communication network in place. The Book of Esther which also chronicles the Jews exiled in Persia informs us about it: Esther 8:14 "So the posts that rode on swift horses that were used in the king's service went out, being hastened and pressed on by the king's command....". Esther 9:30 "And he sent letters to all the Jews, to 127 provinces of the kingdom of Ahasuerus,...."
The Jewish Yearly Calendar
The Jewish year changes to the next in Tishrei, but it was never counted as the 1st calendar month, nor did its place as the 7th month ever change. Without exception, in the Hebrew Scriptures the 1st month is always Nisan. Exodus 12:17-18, Numbers 9:4-5, 28:16, 33:3, 2 Chronicles 35:1. See also those listed below. This is verified from the Torah and the Book of Esther: Esther 2:16 "....the 10th month which is the month Tevet...." Esther 8:9 "....the 3rd month which is the month Sivan." Esther 9:1 "....the 12th month which is the month Adar,...."
Esther 3:7 "....the 1st month which is the month Nisan."Exodus 12:2 "It shall be to you the 1st of the months of the year". Passover, the holiday during which Jesus died, always falls out in Nisan. Leviticus 23:5 "The L-rd's Passover begins at twilight on the 14th day of the 1st month"
At this point, we confidently state that since Ezra departed to Jerusalem with the decree in his possession"on the 1st day of the 1st month"....in the 7th year of the king (Ezra 7:8-11), the decree was issued during the prior year, or even earlier.
Their journey lasted exactly 4 months. From the 1st of Nisan to the 1st of Av "....And he came to Jerusalemin the 5th month which was in the 7th year of the king" (Ezra 7:8-9). The earliest dates for their trip was from March to July, and the latest was from April to August. They arrived during the summer. Missionaries agree with these dates, but they say that July / August was in Autumn / Fall 457 B.C.E. because they must begin their 3.5 years from Autumn / Fall 27 C.E. so that they could end in Spring 31 C.E. the season that Jesus died in.
Their CalculationAutumn / Fall 457 B.C.E. When Ezra arrived in Jerusalem, and the decree went into effect. Plus 483 years (69 weeks of years 69 x 7). ---------------- Autumn / Fall 27 C.E. When Jesus was baptized and began his ministry. Plus 3.5 years The length of time it lasted. ----------------
Spring 31 C.E. When he died and was "cut off ".
Their computation has Jesus being crucified 3.5 years after their 483 years elapsed, in the 70th week,because their 69 weeks ended in 27 C.E. a year too early for Jesus to have died in. However, this extended time period puts a strain on the logical reading of Daniel 9:26, which speaks about another person, "a prince". With the absence of the Hebrew "hey" (the) this translation is most accurate.
A 3.5 years ministry is too long. Matthew 26-27, Mark 14-15, and Luke 22-23 in detailing Jesus' public lifeafter his baptism refer to only 1 Passover and that he died within 1 day of it. This means that his ministry was not longer than 1 full year. John 19 agrees that this is when Jesus was crucified, but he also has 2 earlier Passovers during Jesus' ministry (John 2 and 6). Thus, according to him, Jesus' ministry lasted a maximum of 3 complete years.
This decree permitted all Jews the right to accompany Ezra to Jerusalem and ordered that magistrates andjudges be appointed. It stated the penalties for disobeying the Laws of the Torah, or the king. The rest of it was concerned with the already built and functioning House of G-d, the altar and the people working therein (Ezra 7:13-26).
The L-rd, your G-d, will raise up for you a prophet like me [Moses] from among you, of your brethren; to him you shall hearken....
The New Testament claims that Jesus was this prophet, fraudulently adding:
And it shall be that every soul that does not listen to that prophet shall be destroyed from the people.
Yet the verse under discussion refers not to any specific individual, but to future prophets in general. In ancient Israel, a great many men and women strove to be worthy of Divine Inspiration, attending special schools run by acknowledged prophets. The Hebrew Bible calls these students "prophets" and "sons of the prophets":
I Samuel 10:10
And when they came to the hill, behold, a company of prophets met [Saul]; and the spirit of G-d came mightily upon him, and he prophesied among them.
II Kings 2:7
And fifty men of the sons of the prophets went and stood at some distance from [Elijah and Elisha] as they both stood by the Jordan.
"And I raised up some of your sons as prophets, and some of your young men as Nazirites-is it not indeed so, O children of Israel?" says the L-rd.
Naturally, the competition and yearning for Divine communication were so intense that one was liable to wishfully believe oneself a prophet, or to deceitfully pass himself off as such. Consequently, the passage under discussion explains how to recognize a false prophet:
But the prophet who presumes to speak a word in My Name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or who speaks in the name of other gods, that prophet shall die.
When a prophet speaks in the Name of the L-rd, if the word does not come to pass, or come true, it is a word that the L-rd has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously, you need not be afraid of him.
Jesus was such a false prophet:
Truly, I say to you, there are some standing here who will not taste death before they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom.
That generation died nineteen centuries ago!
Then some of the scribes and Pharisees said to him: "Teacher, we wish to see a sign from you." But he answered them: "An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign; but no sign shall be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the whale, so will the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth."
Jesus was "in the heart of the earth" for no more than thirty--six hours. He died Friday afternoon and was "resurrected" Sunday before dawn. When the women reached his tomb, he was already gone:
It was the day of Preparation, and the Sabbath was beginning. The women who had come with [Jesus] from Galilee followed, and saw the tomb, and how his body was laid; then they returned, and prepared spices and ointments. On the Sabbath they rested according to the commandment. But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they went to the tomb, taking the spices which they had prepared. And they found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they went in they did not find the body.
In fact, in the original Greek, Matthew 28:1 speaks not of "the first day of the week, at early dawn" but of "late on the Sabbath as it was getting dusk, toward the first day of the week...." This would mean that Jesus remained in the cave only from Friday afternoon until Saturday evening at nightfall-a total of about twenty=six hours!116
For You will not abandon my soul to the lower world, or allow Your godly one to see destruction.
In this Psalm, King David joyously proclaims his trust in G-d:
Therefore my heart rejoices and my soul is elated; my flesh also will rest assured.
You will reveal to me the path of life; in Your presence there is fullness of joy, and delight at Your right hand forevermore.
Although David is speaking on his own behalf, the New Testament claims that the verse under discussion is prophesying the "resurrection" of Jesus from hell (Acts 13:35)!
And the L-rd, G-d, commanded the man, saying: "Of every tree in the garden, you may freely eat. But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you must not eat of it, for the day you eat of it, you shall surely die."
Despite this warning, Adam did of course eat from the Tree, but he did not die that day. Rather, he became subject to death, i.e., he became mortal.
In the original Hebrew, "you shall surely die" is expressed by combining the future tense ("shall") with an imperative ("surely"). Such emphatic double verbs are common in the Hebrew Bible. For instance:
So Abimelech warned all the people, saying: "Whoever touches this man or his wife shall surely be put to death."
But you shall surely open your hand to him, and you shall surely lend him enough for his need, whatever it may be.
I Kings 2:37
For on the day you go forth and cross the brook of Kidron, you shall surely know that you shall surely die....
Nonetheless, missionaries seize on the double verb here as something unique, interpreting it to mean that Adam and all mankind went straight to hell upon death, and remained there until Jesus saved them from their torment!
I Peter 3:18--19
For Christ also died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to G-d, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit; in which he went and preached to the spirits in prison....
But the New Testament itself refutes this doctrine, depicting Abraham and Lazarus in heaven before Jesus died, decended to hell, and was "resurrected":
Luke 16:22--23, 25--26
The poor man [Lazarus] died and was carried by the angels to Abraham's bosom. The rich man also died and was buried; and in Hades, being in torment, he lifted up his eyes, and saw Abraham far off and Lazarus in his bosom...but now [Lazarus] is comforted here, and you are in anguish. And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been fixed, in order that those who would pass from here to you may not be able, and none may cross from there to us.
According to the New Testament, Jesus told his disciples that he would be resurrected:
As they were gathering in Galilee, Jesus said to them: "The Son of man is to be delivered into the hands of men, and they will kill him, and he will be raised on the third day." And they were greatly distressed.
However, strange as it is, the New Testament itself, gives evidence that the apostles were not expecting him to be resurrected, and that the man who appeared to them was not Jesus.
Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. And when they saw him they worshipped him; but some doubted.
After this [Jesus] appeared in another form to two of them, as they were walking into the country. And they went back and told the rest, but neither did they believe them.
Elsewhere we are enlightened as to what "another form" means:
But their eyes were kept from recognizing him.
When [Jesus] had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord.
And who did they think he was before he showed them some bruises?
...Now none of the disciples dared ask him: "Who are you?" They knew it was the Lord.
If "They knew it was the Lord," then why should the question "Who are you?" come to mind?