The Wrong Messiah


Messianic expectations flourished in first-century Judea. There was an air of excitement as many recognized that the time was drawing near for their deliverer to come. But when he did show up, many were unwilling to accept him as the Messiah because he did not live up to their expectations. Rather than slaughtering the Romans through military conquest, Yeshua died at the hands of Roman soldiers on a cross. According to the expectations of the time, this was not what the Messiah was supposed to do! In this teaching, we will investigate the first-century Jewish messianic expectations and hope for a new exodus. We will contrast these expectations with the reality of Yeshua and show why it was that many Jews of that time were looking for the wrong messiah. If you have ever wrestled with understanding Yeshua’s messiahship or want to gain a better understanding of the messianic role of Yeshua, this teaching is for you!

But Yeshua called them over and said, “You know that the rulers of the nations lord it over them, and their great ones play the tyrant over them. It shall not be this way among you. But whoever wants to be great among you shall be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you shall be your slave— just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many.

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  1. Carole Kapsner on September 5, 2018 at 9:24 am

    Ryan, could you speak to all the many times and places in Tanach where YHVH ordered men, women, and children to be killed? Sounds like the Mean God vs the Good God.

    • Carole Kapsner on September 5, 2018 at 9:27 am

      Forgot to add my experiences with following the advice of a pastor to turn the other cheek after being beaten by husband. Direction to be meek must be qualified.

    • Ryan White on October 7, 2018 at 6:59 pm

      Hi Carole,
      That is something that has been much debated and is a point of contention for a lot of people. Certainly it is in no way a license for anyone to commit acts of violence now, as the command was given for a specific moment in history against a specific group of people who had been given hundreds of years of warning to change their ways. This is the way many people have explained it. An alternative explanation is that what we are reading in the Bible is a recording of human experiences and these violent episodes do not reflect the will of God, rather how men interpreted the will of God.

      Either way we choose to understand the text, when we look at the big picture, we are faced with the fact that the Bible is telling a story that despite the ethnic cleansing of pagan nations, human wickedness did not abate. That Israel became worse than the nations they displaced from the land. It is a warning to us that even when we think God desires us to act out in violence, it is not from him.

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