Rabbi Schneider - Hidden Prophecies of Messiah Jesus
We're gonna be studying how Yeshua, how King Jesus, fulfilled the entire Tanakh, the entire Old Testament, or Hebrew Bible. So often times the Brit Chadashah, the New Testament scriptures, took the verses out of the Hebrew Bible and said, "Yeshua fulfilled it all". The thing that we have to be aware of however, is that the way that the New Testament writers used the Old Testament to indicate that Yeshua fulfilled it, is different than many of us may realize.
Some people's understanding of Messianic prophecy is overly simplistic. Some people think that when we say that Jesus fulfilled; I heard a pastor say for example, more recently, "Three hundred prophesies from the Old Testament," some people think that, that means that there were over three hundred instances in the Old Testament that had a future prediction contained within it, of what Messiah Jesus would do when He comes. But Messianic prophecy is a lot broader than just simply picking out verses in the Old Testament that point to some anticipated future fulfillment; because much of the way that Yeshua fulfilled prophecy was not in the sense of Him fulfilling something that we were looking to have happen in the future, but rather how Jesus filled the entire Old Testament up with meaning. He fulfilled it. He filled it up with meaning.
Now this really confused me back in the 1980's when I was in Bible school. For example, we in Bible school were in the book of Matthew and I read this in the book of Matthew. Let me read it for you. I'm going to the book of Matthew chapter number 2, verses number 13 through 15. Now, just to give a little backdrop here, what's going on, is that the magi had seen the star in the east that a Savior was gonna be born, that Messiah had come. Herod heard that a Messiah was born, so Herod, threatened by this, afraid that he would lose his place, he ordered the death of the Hebrew children under one year old. As a result of this death threat, an angel came to Joseph and said to Joseph, "Take Yeshua, take Jesus, into Egypt". And so Joseph and Miriam, Yeshua's mother Mary, they took Yeshua into Egypt and they remained there until Herod died. Then when Herod died the Lord led the family, Jesus and His family, back into Israel.
So that's the backdrop. With that said, let's pick up now once again, Matthew 2, verse 13 through 15. "Now when they had gone, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, 'Get up! Take the Child and His mother and flee to Egypt, and remain there until I tell you; for Herod is going to search for the Child to destroy Him.' So Joseph got up and took the Child and His mother while it was still night, and left for Egypt. He remained there until the death of Herod". Now get this, "This was to fulfill," notice that word fulfill. We're talking about Messianic prophecy. So it's key now to zoom in on this word. "This was to fulfill what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet: 'Out of Egypt I called My Son'".
So Matthew here is using the scripture from the Hebrew Bible, "Out of Egypt I called My Son", saying that Yeshua fulfilled it and this would be an incident of Messianic prophecy being fulfilled. And so we would expect now reading this, that if we found the place in the Tanakh, in the Hebrew Bible, where the statement is contained that Yeshua fulfilled, "Out of Egypt I called My Son", many of us would expect based on our current understanding of Messianic prophecy, that we would be able to go to a place in the Tanakh or the Old Testament and we'd be able to find some type of prediction that when Messiah came, God, Hashem, would call Him out of Egypt. That's the typical understanding of Messianic prophecy. I believe that was the understanding that this pastor that I referred to earlier had when he said, "Jesus fulfilled over three hundred Messianic prophesies from the Old Testament".
People think that, that means that there were these scientific statements made in the Tanakh of what the Messiah would do when He came and that within the prophecy in the Old Testament there was an understanding that this event would be fulfilled in the future when Messiah came. There was an anticipation that something was gonna happen in the future, that we would see unfold when Messiah came. However, as I stated beloved ones, the concept of Messianic prophecy is a lot more complicated than that. So to illustrate this, we're gonna go now into the Hebrew Bible from which Matthew quotes here in Matthew 2:15, again He's saying that Jesus fulfilled the scripture from the prophet, the Old Testament prophet, "Out of Egypt I called My Son". So what we have to do to illustrate the point that I'm making, is to go into the Hebrew Bible and take a look at where Matthew is pulling the scripture from. There's only one place in the entire Hebrew Bible where we find the statement, "Out of Egypt did I call My Son". In the book of Hosea chapter 11, verse number 1. So we're gonna go there together now.
Hosea chapter 11, verse 1. "When Israel was a youth I loved him, and out of Egypt I called My son". So when we read Hosea 11:1 in its initial historical context, it doesn't seem to be a prophecy. Hosea is just speaking on the Lord's behalf concerning Israel's history. "When Israel was a youth," the Lord said, "I loved him, and out of Egypt I called My son". In its initial historical context no one was anticipating that that would be some type of prophecy that would be fulfilled in the future. Upon first reading, especially to ancient Israel, it was just the Lord speaking of His love for Israel, His chosen people and how He called them out of Egypt when He delivered them from Pharaoh. So how does Matthew now say that Jesus fulfilled it? How does Matthew now say that when Joseph and Mary, Miriam, took Yeshua back into Israel from Egypt, that the scripture in Hosea 11:1 was fulfilled? No one was expecting that it needed to be fulfilled. Are you getting what I'm saying church?
Many people when they think of Messianic prophecy have an assumption that there were predictions in the Old Testament, that everybody was waiting to be fulfilled when Messiah came. But much of the time, the way the New Testament uses Yeshua having fulfilled Messianic prophecy is not in the sense that He fulfilled some type of event that Hebrews were looking forward to being fulfilled, but rather that when Yeshua came, listen, He filled up those prophesies often times that had already been fulfilled to their fullest meaning. In other words, in this specific example God had already called Israel out of Egypt. He had already delivered His first born Son. It wasn't an event that people were looking towards happening in the future. They weren't anticipating any future prediction. Yet when Yeshua was called out Egypt into Israel, it's quoted in the book of Matthew that Yeshua fulfilled the scripture of Hosea 11:1. Why? Because Yeshua is Israel's divine representative and what Israel went through, now Yeshua goes through; because He embodies Israel and He fills Israel's history up to its fullest meaning.
So Messianic prophecy, once again, is more often times of an art than a science. It's more poetry than math. Now there are very specific, measurable, Messianic prophecies that we will get into in this study. For example, where Messiah would be born, when He would die. We're gonna look at many prophecies that were absolutely future predictions that people understood were prophecies that would take place in the future as being fulfilled. There is that element of Messianic prophecy that we will be examining. But not all Messianic prophecy is of that nature, much of it is more music than math and more art than science. It's an art form and I'm gonna show you that this way of using scriptures from the Old Testament and applying them to Jesus is very much in keeping with the rabbinic way, not that traditional rabbis apply the scriptures to Jesus; but that traditional rabbis take scriptures out of the Talmud or out of the Torah and they give them a whole different meaning, or a whole other level of meaning that was evidenced in their initial historical context.
In yeshivas today for example, which are the Jewish institutes of learning, every Jewish boy in a yeshiva will have a partner and they'll sit across from each other every day studying the Torah or the Talmud and the Talmud is a commentary on the Torah and it also contains information about how to keep the Torah. That's for a whole other subject, but it's very much a part of Rabbinic Judaism today. The yeshiva students, the rabbinic students, will sit across from each other. They'll study a verse from the Torah or the Talmud and they'll try to be as creative as possible with it and try to think of as many different meanings as possible and the imagination is the limit. And so this concept of taking verses out of the Torah and giving them a new spin, or putting a new meaning on them, or adding additional insight into them, this is very much, beloved, the Jewish way.
And so I'm saying this, because sometimes Jewish people from the traditional Jewish community would accuse us as believers in Yeshua, of misusing the Hebrew Bible. So that when we say for example, in the instance that we just quoted; that Yeshua fulfilled, as Matthew said, Hosea 11:1. They would say to us, "You're misusing the Bible. Where did you get that interpretation from? Hosea wasn't making a prophecy about the Messiah there". They would say Hosea was just giving you know, a historical overview of Israel's history, how God loved them and how He delivered them out of Egypt and called them out of Egypt. "You Christians, you're just giving fanciful interpretations that has nothing to do," they would say, "with the original text". And I'm just simply saying, Rabbinic Judaism does the same exact thing, back to the days of Yeshua and even before hand and even till today.
We are simply, beloved, using the scriptures the way that the Lord designed us to use them and the reason that we know we're using these scriptures correctly, is because the New Testament is the Word of God. And so for example, the most famous Messianic prophecy that we'll get into later in the series, is Isaiah 53. Matthew quotes Isaiah 53 and Matthew says Yeshua fulfilled it, that He took our sin and our own infirmity on the tree and by His stripes we're healed. Matthew quotes Isaiah 53 and says Yeshua fulfilled it. Well orthodox rabbis would say that scripture doesn't apply to Jesus, that applies to Israel. It's about Israel not Jesus. Well to me, beloved, I'm completely confident and comfortable applying it to Jesus, because Matthew told me it applied to Jesus.
And in fact when you study Isaiah 53 it only logically applies to the Messiah, Yeshua Hamashiach, who is God in the flesh; God clothing Himself in humanity, the innocent one dying in the place of the guilty, taking our sin and our sickness in His own body on the tree. And so it doesn't matter if people accuse us, church, of misusing scripture. It doesn't matter if somebody says, "You're misusing a verse from the Old Testament and applying it to Jesus". Because if the New Testament tells us it applied to Jesus, it applied to Jesus. In fact, in the book of Luke chapter 24 verse 27, we find Yeshua, we find King Jesus, taking His disciples on a journey through the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms; revealing to them all the things that were hidden in the Hebrew Bible that were really about Him.
Let's read there together, Luke 24:27. Yeshua is It says, "Then beginning with Moses and with all the prophets, He explained to them," His disciples as they were walking on a road to Emmaus, "He explained to them the things concerning Himself". So what had happened is, the disciple, Yeshua had been crucified, the disciples were totally broken, totally lost. Their dreams had been crushed to pieces. They were totally confused. They had left every thing to follow Messiah Jesus. And now what happens? Rather than delivering Israel from Rome, rather than the Messianic Age immediately being ushered in, in the fullest sense of the word; instead it appeared that the opposite happened. And so they are totally broken, confused, lost, and in the dark. And they're walking on this road to Emmaus and as they're walking down the road, Yeshua appears to them. But He took on a physical appearance that was different than the physical appearance that He had when He ministered to them in the flesh before He was crucified.
So He appeared to them as a stranger. And Jesus walks up to them, again they couldn't recognize Him. And He said, "What's going on guys"? And they said, "Don't you know what happened here? Are you the only one in the city that doesn't realize what just happened? Yeshua, the one we believed was the Messiah, they crucified Him". And then the Bible says that Jesus took them on a journey in the scriptures. They still didn't realize it was Yeshua. He took them on the journey through the Law of Moses, the Prophets, and the Psalms; revealing to them the things concerning Himself and how the Messiah would have to die and suffer for the sins of the people of the world. And later He revealed to them and opened their eyes to see Him in all the pages of scripture.
Jesus had to take them on a Bible study through the entire Torah, through all the Prophetic writings, through the Psalms, showing them the hidden mysteries that were all fulfilled in Him. And that's what we're gonna be doing in this series, beloved ones. We're gonna be getting in to these mysteries in the Hebrew Bible that all pointed to Yeshua, to whom the entire Hebrew Bible aimed. And so when we talk about Messianic prophecy in conclusion today, I just want you to understand that Messianic prophecy is a lot broader than many people realize. To state my point once again, often times when people hear that Jesus fulfilled Messianic prophecy, they think it was like Nostradamus, you know making these predictions about the future; that in the year so and so, you know a flood would happen or an earthquake would happen. They think of prophecy as something very specific, that would happen in a certain way, a certain time, a certain year, or a certain season.
And I'm not in any way suggesting that we believe Nostradamus, I'm just saying that Nostradamus, the false prophet, made specific predictions, future predictions that people anticipated being fulfilled. But I'm saying, church, that much of the Messianic prophecy that Yeshua fulfilled, was not in the sense of Him bringing to fullness anticipated future event, but rather filling Israel's history up with meaning, repeating their history in His own body; thus fulfilling Israel and filling Israel's history to its fullest sense in the things that He experienced in His own life.
We're gonna be looking at Messianic prophecy in the weeks ahead in types and shadows. We're gonna be looking at the binding of Isaac, how Abraham the father of all believers offered up his son Isaac and what that means to us in our relationship to Father God. We're gonna be looking at Joseph and how Joseph was a type or a shadow of Jesus. We're gonna be looking at the word that the Lord gave to Moses in Devarim, Deuteronomy 18, where the Lord said to Moses, "Moses, I'm gonna raise up for you a prophet like yourself from amongst your own countrymen and anyone who does not listen to him will be cut off from amongst his people". Now that's a very specific prophecy indicating something would happen in the future that we should be looking forward to. We're gonna be looking at those types of prophecies. At the end of the day, when we're done with this, you're gonna see how the entire Hebrew Bible paints a rich and colorful picture of King Yeshua and how Jesus brings the Hebrew Bible to its full and its ultimate intent. Until next time beloved, baruch Hashem and shalom.