The Truth Shall Set You Free

Written by Rev. Moshe Elijah


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Dear reader, do you know the TRUTH? What is the TRUTH?

Before I go into the heart of this topic, I would like to just jot down some passages of scriptures (as a form of introduction) from the Masoretic text version (recognised and respected by orthodox Rabbis) of the Jewish Old Testament Bible.

Introductory Scriptures

Genesis 22/18:
"And in thy (Abraham's) Seed (the Messiah of Israel?) shall all the nations of the earth be blessed."

Genesis 27/29:
"Blessed be he that blesseth thee (Israel)."

Psalm 122/6:
"Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee."

Psalm 102/14,17:"Yea, the set time is come . . . for the LORD buildeth up Zion (Israel)."

Zechariah 14/3,4:
"Then shall the LORD (Hashem Adonai — the Holy One of Israel — the Messiah of Israel?) go forth .. . and His feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives ... and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof."

Now, dear reader, let us go into the heart of the topic — what is the truth of the following question?

Who is the person described in Isaiah Chapter 53, in the Old Testament?
(N.B. All scriptures used here, are from the Jewish Masoretic Text, published in Israel.)

Many orthodox Rabbis differ in their opinion about who is the person described in Chapter 53 of the book of Isaiah (a Jewish prophet who lived about 600 B.C.) in the Jewish Masoretic text of the Tenach (Jewish "Old Testament" Bible).

Some Rabbis say it refers to the prophet Isaiah, who wrote the book. Others say it does not refer to one single person, but to the whole nation of Israel, who suffered for the sins of the world.

Reader, I shall now write down this famous chapter, starting with the introductory few verses of the previous (52nd) Chapter, from the Jewish Masoretic text (which is highly respected and recognised by the orthodox Rabbis) and let you, yourself, decide who or what it describes.

I shall intersperse the verses with my own comments, giving a possible interpretation of it.

However, these comments may be ignored if you do not agree. But you, dear reader, may draw your own conclusion as to who is the person described, after you have read this scripture and made your own judgement.

Will your conclusion be the same as mine — or different?

Isaiah 52/(10-15) — (introductory verses)

"The Lord (God of Israel) hath made bare His holy arm (now "Holy arm of the Lord" is one of many titles or names, given to the Messiah of Israel — see Psalm 98/(1-3); Psalm 77/16; Isaiah 40/10; Isaiah 59/16; Isaiah 63/5; — thus the Messiah is like "part" of God.

Another title of Messiah of Israel, is "Holy One of Israel" — see Psalm 16/10; Isaiah 49/7; Isaiah 41/14. Other titles, names, are "Righteous offspring of David", and "The Lord is our Righteousness" — which indicates Messiah has same name as God — see Jeremiah 23/(5-6). Also Zechariah 14/(3-4), and Isaiah 9/5 attributes the name of God of Israel to the Messiah.) in the eyes of all nations; and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God. (All the nations of the world, including the Gentiles, will be blessed by the Messiah of Israel, as indicated by Genesis 22/18; 28/14 — Isaiah 11/10; 42/1, 6, 7; 49/(6-8). NB — The Messiah is also to be a light and covenant, unto the Gentiles.)

Behold, My servant shall prosper, he shall be exalted, and extolled, and be very high (thus this "servant of God", the Holy arm of God, will be like God, as God is usually described in this way — exalted, extolled (praised), most high).

As many were astonished at thee; saying, surely his visage is too marred to be that of a man, and his form, to be that of the sons of men:

So shall he cause many nations to be amazed at him; kings shall shut their mouths: for that which had not been told them shall they see; and that which they had not heard shall they perceive."

Isaiah 53

"Who would have believed our report? (this story of the Messiah is very hard to believe as it is fantastically incredible). . . . and for whom is the arm of the Lord (a title for Messiah as mentioned above — this Messiah is "part" of God) revealed?

For he grew up before Him as a tender plant, and as a root out of dry ground: (Isaiah 9/(5-6) states the Messiah will come from the line of David, and Micah 5/1 states the Messiah will be born in the city of David — Bethlehem — which, by the way, means "house of bread" in Hebrew).

He had no form nor comeliness; and now we look at him who was no beauty and we desire him.

He (the servant of God, the "arm of the Lord") was despised and rejected of men; (Isaiah 49/7 also states that the Messiah, the "Holy One" of God is despised and abhorred).

A man (singular) of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we (the children of Israel) hid as it were our faces from him; he (the "arm of the Lord", the Messiah of Israel?) was despised, and we esteemed him not. But verily he hath borne griefs inflicted by us, and suffered sorrows we have caused: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God and afflicted (Zechariah 12/10, and 13/6 states that the Messiah was pierced and had wounds in his hands, wounded in the house of his friends).

Though he was wounded through our transgressions (sins), bruised through our iniquities (wickedness): yet the bond of our peace is upon him, and in his fellowship we shall heal ourselves (i.e., we get atonement for our sins and healing, through the Messiah's sufferings as our scapegoat, like in Yom Kippur).

All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned everyone to his own way; (i.e., everyone is doing "his own thing" instead of keeping the commandments and statutes of God).

. . . and the Lord hath caused the iniquity of us all to fall upon him (like scapegoat in Yom Kippur — Annual Day of Atonement for sins of Nation of Israel — when the high priest puts the sins of whole nation of Israel onto it — see Leviticus 16/10, (21-22)).

He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he could not open his mouth: as a lamb which is brought to the slaughter (just like Passover lamb in the Torah — 5 books of Moses — e.g. Exodus 12/(1-14), and also like the other animal sacrifices in the Torah, for the atonement of sins — e.g. Leviticus 16/9, (15-19)).

. . . and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he could not open his mouth.

He was taken away from rule and from judgement; and as for his generation who should have spoken for him? For he was cut off out of the land of the living (i.e. killed — also Daniel 9/(25-26) states that the Messiah, the Anointed Prince — another title of Messiah — would be killed. N.B. "Messiah" means "The Anointed One" — but to distinguish from other "anointed" persons, such as King David, the Messiah's more correct title is "The Anointed Prince". Incidentally, some Bible scholars say King David, who lived in 1000 B.C., predicted the method of execution of the Messiah in Psalm 22.).. . . he was stricken through the transgression of my (the children of Israel) people. (i.e. he was sacrificed as a sin offering, like the animal sacrifices mentioned in the Torah — e.g. Leviticus 16/9, (15-19)).

For one made his grave among the wicked, and his tomb among the rich; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth (i.e. he was a good, honest person).

But it pleased the Lord to bruise him; He hath put him to grief: saying, If his soul shall consider it a recompense for guilt (i.e. the Messiah's soul was offered as a sacrifice to compensate for guilt of sins committed).

He shall see his seed (the people that follow the Messiah and receive the benefits of the blessings of forgiveness of sins through the Messiah's atoning sacrifice), he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hand (i.e. the Messiah will rise from the dead — and resurrect — to achieve this, as indicated in Psalm 16/(10-11).)

He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied; by his knowledge shall my servant (the "arm of the Lord" — the Messiah of Israel) justify the righteous before many, and he (the Messiah) shall bear their iniquities (like scapegoat of Yom Kippur as mentioned above).

Surely I will divide him a portion with the great (great honour and glory bestowed on Messiah as indicated in Daniel 7/13 and Psalm 110), and he shall divide the spoil with the strong (this is also indicated in Psalm 2/(6-8)); because he (the "arm of the Lord" — the Messiah of Israel) hath laid open his soul unto death, and was numbered with transgressors; and he (the Messiah) took off the sin of many (made atonement for their sins through his own blood sacrifice as the "Passover Lamb of God" — Leviticus 17/11 states that atonement for sins is done by the shedding of blood).

.. . and made intercession for the transgressors (prayed to God to forgive those who killed him).

Concluding Remarks

Now, dear reader, what is your verdict? Who is the person described in Isaiah Chapter 53?

Was the person, the prophet Isaiah, as some Rabbis say?

Well, tradition says the prophet Isaiah was killed by being "sawed" into two pieces, for preaching "bad news" to the King and elders of Israel. Now the prophet Isaiah himself acknowledged that he was not a sinless person, but like everybody else in Israel, "a man of unclean lips" — see Isaiah 6/5. Hence he could not be offered as a pure, holy, sinless, sacrifice for atonement of sins, as the Lord God of Israel demands a holy one, without sin, as exemplified in the demand of the animals being sacrificed in the Tenach, to be without spot or blemish — e.g. see Exodus 12/5; Leviticus 9/3; 14/10; 23/12.

Or was the person, the Messiah of Israel, the Holy One of Israel; who is unique in being pure, holy, sinless; and thus the only one acceptable to God for the sacrificial atonement and forgiveness of sins of sinful people?

Or was the person the whole nation of Israel, as some Rabbis say? In my opinion, this opinion is without good foundation, as the scripture definitely describes a single person, and compares this single person to the whole nation of Israel. Also this person is described as Righteous servant of God, while Israel as a nation was a people laden with iniquity, a sinful nation, as the prophet Isaiah himself states (e.g. see Isaiah 6/5 — "a nation of unclean lips").

But what is your verdict, dear reader?

If the person described is the Messiah of Israel, then has he already come — a jew, from the line of David, suffering great anguish and pain, etc, for the forgiveness of sins of guilty people? Or is he yet to come? What do you think, dear reader?

May the Lord God of Israel bless you with the truth, so that you will have a new heart and spirit, forgiven of sins, as described in Ezekiel 36/(24-29), and Jeremiah 31/(31-34).

Knowledge of the truth with corresponding respect for it, will set you free..


Moshe Elijah — (a Jew who believes in HaShem Adonai, Elohim — the God of Israel).
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