It is written in the Scriptures according to the prophets
by Robert Randle
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The Old Testament Scriptures [TANAKH] mention about a coming Deliver, Shepherd, Servant, King, and Prophet Who would help turn the Israelites back to a rightful relationship with the God of their fathers Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. To this end there are prophesies which point toward the future restoration of Israel to her God and inclusion of the Gentiles, too. The printed Bibles of Christendom are filled with many study aids including references which are indexed to numerous instances from the Jewish sacred writings which seem to reveal the expected Jewish Messiah, but of which most, if not almost all Jews reject the authority of the Christian New Testament [Brit Chadashah]. This study will focus mainly on the specific narratives in the Gospels where the text actually mentions that the event is in fulfillment of an Old Testament prophesy and not just referenced in the margins or columns of the pages being read in the modern or older translated English [or any other] version. It would seem to be more authentic and quite insightful if one searches the sacred word in this manner as opposed to consulting a lot of commentaries.
Christ born of Mary
Matthew 1: 22-23
So all this was done that it might be fulfilled, which was spoken by the LORD through the prophet, saying: “Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel, “which is translated, “God with us.” (Cp. Isaiah 7: 14)
NOTE: Only here.
Where the King of the Jews is to be born
Matthew 2: 4-6
And when he [Herod the king] had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he inquired of them where the Christ [Messiah] was to be born. So they said to him, “In Bethlehem of Judea, for thus it is written by the prophet: ‘But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are not the least among the rulers of Judah; For out of you shall come a Ruler who will shepherd My people Israel.’ ” (Cp. Micah 5: 2)
NOTE: Micah 5: 2 has the additional “Whose goings forth are from of old, from everlasting.”
John 7: 40-42
Therefore many from the crowd, when they heard this saying, said, “Truly this is the prophet (Cp. Deuteronomy 18: 15, 18).” Others said, “This is the Christ [Messiah].” But some said, “Will the Christ [Messiah] come out of Galilee? “Has not the Scripture said that the Christ comes from the seed of David and from the town of Bethlehem, where David was?” (Cp. Micah 5: 2)
The flight into Egypt
Matthew 2: 13-15
Now when they had departed, behold, an angel of the LORD appeared to Joseph in a dream, saying, “Arise, take the young Child and His mother, flee to Egypt, and stay there until I bring you word; for Herod will seek the young Child to destroy Him.” When he arose, he took the young Child and His mother by night and departed for Egypt, and was there until the death of Herod that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the LORD through the prophet, saying, “Out of Egypt I called My Son.” (Cp. Hosea 11: 1b)
NOTE: This passage in Hosea seems to refer to the children of Israel in bondage in Egypt as opposed to the promised Messiah.
Massacre of the Innocents
Matthew 2: 16-18
Then Herod, when he saw that he was deceived by the wise men, was exceedingly angry; and he sent forth and put to death the male children who were in Bethlehem and in all its districts, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had determined from the wise men. Then was fulfilled what was spoken by Jeremiah the prophet, saying: “A voice was heard in Ramah, lamentation, weeping, and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children, refusing to be comforted, because they are no more.” (Cp. Jeremiah 31: 15)
NOTE: Only here and this passage in Jeremiah refers to King Herod ordering the slaughter of infant boys under two years old in order to kill Jesus is rather dubious. Not only that, but how would the people react to such atrocity let alone the Roman rulers who probably want to keep peace in the region of Judea. Besides, it seems that only the Romans had the power to put someone to death (Cp. John 18: 28-31), and doubtless, if Herod actually authorized butchering innocent children the outcry from the people would have reached the governor of Judea and King Herod would in all likelihood be summoned to appear before the Roman authorities to explain his actions.
John the Baptizer prepares the Way
Matthew 3: 3
For this is he who was spoken of by the prophet Isaiah, saying: “The voice of one crying in the wilderness: ‘Prepare the way of the LORD; make His paths straight.’ ” (Cp. Isaiah Isaiah 40: 3)
Luke 3: 4-6
As it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet, saying: “The voice of one crying in the wilderness: ‘Prepare the way of the LORD; Make straight His paths. Every valley shall be filled and every mountain and hill brought low; the crooked places shall be made straight and the rough ways smooth; and all flesh shall see the salvation of God.’ ” (Cp. Isaiah 40: 3-5)
NOTE: Isaiah 40: 5 includes: “The glory of the LORD shall be revealed and all flesh shall see it together; for the mouth of the LORD has spoken [it].”
John 1: 23
He [John] said: “I am ‘the voice of one crying in the wilderness: make straight the way of the LORD.” ’ (Cp. Isaiah 40: 3)
Jesus rejected at Nazareth
Luke 4: 17-19, 21
And He was handed the book of the prophet Isaiah. And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written: “The Spirit of the LORD was upon Me, because He has anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed; To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD.” And He began to say to them, “Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” (Cp. Isaiah 42: 7)
NOTE: Only here.
Jesus begins His Galilean Ministry
Matthew 4: 13-16
And leaving Nazareth, He came and dwelt in Capernaum, which is by the sea, in the regions of Zebulun and Naphtali, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying: “The land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, by the way of the sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles: The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light, and upon those who sat in the region and shadow of death, Light has dawned.” (Cp. Isaiah 9: 1-2)
NOTE: Only here.
Many people healed in the Evening
Matthew 8: 16-17
When evening had come, they brought to Him many who were demon-possessed. And He cast out the spirits with a word, and healed all who were sick, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying: “He Himself took our infirmities and bore our sicknesses.” (Cp. Isaiah 53: 4a)
NOTE: Only here.
Behold My Servant
Matthew 12: 15-21
But when Jesus knew it, He withdrew from there. And great multitudes followed Him, and He healed them all. Yet He warned them not to make Him known, that it might be fulfilled, which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying: “Behold! My Servant whom I have chosen, My Beloved in whom My soul is well pleased! I will put My spirit upon Him, and he will declare justice to the Gentiles. He will not quarrel nor cry out, nor will anyone hear His voice in the streets. A bruised reed He will not break, and smoking flax he will not quench, until He sends forth justice to victory; and in His name the Gentiles will trust.” (Cp. Isaiah 42: 1-3)
NOTE: The phrase “and in His name the Gentiles will trust” in not mentioned in the Isaiah passage.
The Promise of the Holy Spirit
John 7: 37-39
On the last day, that great day of the feast [“Feast of Tabernacles”-Cp. 7: 2], Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink. “He who believes in Me, as the Scriptures has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water. But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him would receive (Cp. Isaiah 44: 3); for the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.
NOTE: There is no Scripture that has the specific quotation “out of his heart will flow rivers of living water” but Isaiah 44: 3 and 55: 1-2 seems to convey the general meaning.
The Triumphal Entry
*Matthew 21: 4-5, 9-11
All this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying: “Tell the daughter of Zion. ‘Behold, your King is coming to you, Lowly, and sitting on a donkey, a colt, the foal of a donkey.’ ” Then the multitudes who went before and those who followed cried out, saying: “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD!’ (Cp. Psalms 118: 26a) Hosanna in the highest!” And when He had come into Jerusalem, the entire city was moved, saying, “Who is this?” So the multitudes said, “This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth of Galilee.”
NOTE: The aforementioned passage combines Isaiah 62: 11b and Zechariah 9: 9, but the part about having salvation is not included.
Mark 11: 9-10
Then those who went before and those who followed cried out, saying: “Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD!’ Blessed is the kingdom of our father David that comes in the name of the LORD! Hosanna in the highest!”
Luke 19: 37-39
Then, as He was drawing near the descent of the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works they had seen, saying, “ ‘Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the LORD!’ Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!”
John 12: 12-13, 14-15
The next day a great multitude that had come to the feast, when they heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, took branches of palm trees and went out to meet Him, and cried out: “Hosanna! ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD!’ The King of Israel!” Then Jesus, when he had found a young donkey, sat on it; as it is written: “Fear not daughter of Zion; Behold, Your King is coming, sitting on a donkey’s colt.”
NOTE: Part of the passage in Zechariah about being just and lowly and having salvation is omitted.
The Parable of the Wicked Vinedressers
Matthew 21: 42-45
Jesus said to them, “Have you never read in the Scriptures: “The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone. This was the LORD’S doing. And it is marvelous in our eyes (Cp. Psalms 118: 22-23)’? “Therefore I say to you, the kingdom of God will be taken from you and given to a nation bearing the fruits of it. “And whoever falls on this stone will be broken, but on whomever it falls, it will grind him to powder.” Now the chief priests and Pharisees heard His parables, they perceived that He was speaking of them.
Mark 12: 10-11
“Have you not even read this Scripture: “The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone? This was the LORD’S doing. And it is marvelous in our eyes’? ” (Cp. Psalms 118: 22-23)
Luke 20: 17-18
Then He looked at them and said, “What then is this that is written: ‘The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone (Cp. Psalms 118: 22)’? “Whoever falls on this stone will be broken, but on whomever it falls, it will grind him to powder.”
NOTE: This passage seems to combine Psalms 118: 22 and the principle thought behind Isaiah 8: 14-15.
How can David call his descendant the LORD?
Matthew 22: 41-46
While the Pharisees were gathering together, Jesus asked them, saying, What do you think about the Christ [Messiah]? Whose Son is He?” They said to Him, “The Son of David.” He said to them, “How then does David in the Spirit call Him ‘Lord,’ saying: The LORD said to My Lord, Sit at My right hand until I make Your enemies Your footstool” ’?
Mark 12: 35-36
Then Jesus answered and said, while He taught in the temple, “How is it that the scribes say that the Christ [Messiah] is the Son of David? “For David himself said by the Holy Spirit: “The LORD said to My Lord, Sit at My right hand until I make Your enemies Your footstool (Cp. Psalms 110: 1).” ’
Luke 20: 41-43
And He said to them, “How can they say that the Christ [Messiah] is the Son of David? “Now David himself said in the book of Psalms: “The LORD said to My Lord, Sit at My right hand until I make Your enemies Your footstool (Cp. Psalms 110: 1).” ’
Jesus predicts Peter’s denial
Matthew 26: 31
Then Jesus said to them, “All of you will be made to stumble because of Me this night, for it is written: “I will strike the Shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be scattered (Cp. Zechariah 13: 7a).’
Mark 14: 27
Then Jesus said to them, “All of you will be made to stumble because of me this night, for it is written: ‘I will strike the Shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered (Cp. Zechariah 13: 7a).’
Betrayal and arrest in Gethsemane
Matthew 26: 55-56
In that hour Jesus said to the multitudes, “Have you come out, as against a robber, with swords and clubs to take Me? I sat daily with you, teaching in the temple, and you did not seize Me. But all this was done that the Scripture of the prophets might be fulfilled (Cp. Zechariah 13: 7a).” Then all the disciples forsook Him and fled.
NOTE: This is essentially the same as verse 31.
Luke 22: 52-53
Then Jesus said to the chief priests, captains of the temple, and the elders who had
come to Him, “Have you come out as against a robber, with swords and clubs? “When I was with you daily in the temple you did not try to seize Me. But this is your hour, and the power of darkness.
NOTE: There is no mention about being fulfilled in the Scriptures and the disciples abandoning Jesus.
John 18: 8-9
Jesus answered, “I have told you that I am He. Therefore, if you seek Me, let these go their way,” that the saying might be fulfilled, which He spoke. “Of those whom You gave Me I have lost none.”
The King on a Cross
Luke 22: 37
“For I say to you that this which is written must still be accomplished in Me: ‘And He was numbered with the transgressors (Cp. Isaiah 53: 12b).’ For the things concerning Me have an end.”
Jesus faces the Sanhedrin
Matthew 26: 64
Jesus said to him, “It is as you said. Nevertheless, I say to you, hereafter you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of Power, and coming on the clouds of heaven (Cp. Daniel 7: 13).”
Mark 14: 61-62
But He kept silent and answered nothing. Again the high priest asked Him, saying to Him, “Are You the Christ [Messiah], the Son of the Blessed?” Jesus said, “I am. And you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Power, and coming with the clouds of heaven (Cp. Daniel 7: 13).”
Luke 22: 66-67, 69
A soon as it was day, the elders of the people, both chief priests and scribes, came together and led Him into their council, saying, “If You are the Christ [Messiah], tell us.” But He said to Him, “If I tell you, you will by no means believe. “Hereafter the Son of Man will sit on the right hand of the Power of God (Cp. Daniel 7: 13).”
NOTE: There is no mention about coming on the clouds of heaven in the text or any reference to a fulfillment in the Scriptures..
The King on the Cross
Matthew 27: 35, 38
Then they crucified Him, and divided His garments, casting lots, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet: “They divided My garments among them, and for My clothing they cast lots (Cp. Psalms 22: 18).” Then two robbers were crucified with Him, one on the right hand and another on the left.
Mark 15: 28
So the Scripture was fulfilled which says, “And He was numbered with the transgressors (Cp. Isaiah 53: 12b).”
John 19: 24, 36-37
They said therefore among themselves, “Let us not tear it, but cast lots for it, whose it shall be,” that the Scripture might be fulfilled which says: “They divided My garments among them, and for My clothing they cast lots (Cp. Psalms 22: 18).” Therefore the soldiers did these things. For these things were done that the Scripture might be fulfilled, “Not one of His bones shall be broken (Cp. Psalms 34: 20).” And again, another Scripture says, “They shall look on Him whom they pierced (Cp. Zechariah 12: 10b).”
CONCLUSION: There are probably no more than 20 or so direct references to the Old Testament prophecies within the texts of all the New Testament Gospels that could be used to refer to Jesus of Nazareth; and while the majority refer to Him as a Ruler, King, or Shepherd, it does not necessarily mean He was to be considered divine; even though the noun might be capitalized. Even when Jesus told the Sanhedrin about coming in power on the clouds of heaven, these were His exact words and NOT referenced in fulfillment Daniel 7: 13. Not only that, and curiously so, when the deity of Jesus could be presented in full view as in Matthew 2: 4-6, which is in fulfillment of Micah 5: 2, the latter part of the verse is omitted, “whose goings forth is from everlasting [eternity].” Also, it must be remembered that the King of Israel is to be a blood descendant of King David who was to sit on his throne [as God promised] over a geopolitical Israel, and it seems that the Jews were not necessarily looking for Him in the new heavens and earth or in a spiritual sense.
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