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What and who is the…
Hebrew: מָשִׁיחַ —transliteration: mashiah, meshiach, mashiakh or mashiach
Aramaic: מְשִׁיחָא —transliteration: mshikha
Greek: Χριστός —transliteration: Khristós (Christos or Christ)
Meaning “The Anointed One” or “The Chosen One”
In all the 39 instances of its occurring in the Old Testament, “messiah” is translated by the Septuagint as Khristós or Christos.
The word literally means anointed. Thus priests (Exodus 28:41; 40:15; Numbers 3:3), prophets (1 Kings 19:16), and kings (1 Samuel 9:16; 16:3; 2 Samuel 12:7) were anointed with oil, and so consecrated to their respective offices. The great Messiah is anointed “above his fellows” (Psalm 45:7); i.e., he embraces in himself all the 3 offices—priest, prophet, and king.
The Greek form “Messias” is only twice used in the New Testament, in John 1:41 and 4:25 (Revised King James Version: “Messiah”), and in the Old Testament the word Messiah, as the rendering of the Hebrew, occurs only twice (Dan 9:25-26; Revised King James Version, “the anointed one”).
The first great promise in Genesis 3:15 contains in it the germ of all the prophecies recorded in the Old Testament regarding the coming of the Messiah and the great work He was to accomplish on Earth. The prophecies became more definite and fuller as the ages rolled on; the light shone more and more unto the perfect day.
Different periods of prophetic revelation have been pointed out:
- Patriarchal period
- Mosaic period
- the period of David
- the period of prophetism, i.e., of those prophets whose works form a part of the Old Testament canon
The expectations of the Jews were thus kept alive from generation to generation, till the “fulness of the times,” when Messiah came, “made of a woman, made under the law, to redeem them that were under the law.”
In Him, all these ancient prophecies have their fulfilment. Jesus of Nazareth is the Messiah, the great Deliverer who was to come. (Compare Matthew 26:54; Mark 9:12; Luke 18:31; 22:37; John 5:39; Acts 2; 16:31; 26:22-23.)
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Article Version: September 9, 2017