“Fifty Messiahs And Still Waiting”
This article first appeared in Enrichment magazine Fall 2004 (pages 3)
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Many deceivers who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh,
have gone out into the world. Any such person is the deceiver and the
antichrist” (2 John 1:7).
The Jewish bookstore proprietor, Mr. Golden, was adamant with me. “Jesus cannot
be the Jewish Messiah. The world is still in virtual chaos; children are hungry;
diseases kill millions; and war and terrorism are tragic realities. Where is the world’s
universal peace and prosperity that originate from the Messiah’s coming? These did
not accompany Jesus, did they?”
The normally gentle Orthodox Jewish bookseller did believe that a messiah would
ultimately come based on his confidence in Jewish sages and rabbinic opinion. For
example, the outstanding 12th-century theologian, physician, and philosopher, the
famous Rabbi Moses Ben Maimon (“Rambam”) mandated in his “Thirteen Articles
of Faith” the daily Orthodox Jewish recitation of, “I believe in the coming of the
Messiah; and though he tarry, yet will I daily wait for him.”
Yet Rambam also strongly warned Jews against following false messiahs in his
Letter to Yemen (1192) where he recounted the histories of four recent messianic
claimants. These false messiahs had not only met with tragic fates; they also had
brought shame, ridicule, and catastrophe on the Jewish world. Messiahs ranged from
reportedly being miracle-working charismatic dreamers to messianic draftees compelled
by Jewish people desperately needing national redemption.
Fifty Messiahs And Still Waiting – By Dr. Ray Gannon