Walk to the Cross (Easter prep): Jesus in the Old Testament

I asked Professor Tim McGrew for evidence that Christians didn’t “reinterpret” Old Testament passages to be prophecies fulfilled in Jesus.  As Easter approaches, it’s time to share his reply.  Material referred to is Maas (and here), Edersheim, and Miller (“NWNTI, JTM, BPM, DSST, SS, TM, LTJM, CTM. The citations from the Apocrypha are from CASA or HCSB, the Jewish Pseudepigrapha are from OTP, Dead Sea Scrolls from DSSTQTE et. al., rabbinix from various. The citations of scholarly opinion I have taken MAINLY from authorities that would NOT be considered ‘conservative’ or ‘evangelical'”).

Also, below Professor McGrew’s reply is a very cool page shared with sermon group by my pastor on Jesus in all the Old Testament books.

Professor McGrew’s reply:

The most useful one-stop reference list here is Alfred Edersheim, The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah, 8th ed., vol. 2 (London: Longmans, Green, and Co., 1912), Appendix IX, “List of Old Testament Passages Messianically Applied in Ancient Rabbinic Writings,” pp. 710 ff. Edersheim notes that his list is not complete, but it is fully adequate for the purpose of documenting Jewish messianic use of most of the texts in question.
I am also including links to the work of the Jesuit scholar Anthony John Maas, Christ in Type and Prophecy, vol. 1 and vol. 2 (New York: Benziger Brothers, 1895). I think you’ll agree with me that Mass’s research is simply superb.

Psalm 16
The Midrash on verse 9 says: “My glory shall rejoice in the King Messiah, who in the future shall come forth from me, …” See Edersheim, p. 717.
There is an outstanding discussion of this Psalm in Maas, vol. 2, pp. 358-74.
Psalm 22
Regarding verse 7 (which is verse 8 in the Hebrew division of verses), there is a comment inYalkut, a collection of old Rabbinic notes, a remark on Isaiah 60 that applies Psalm 22:7 to the Messiah. See Edersheim, p. 718.
Isaiah 42
Numerous passages in Isaiah were taken messianically by the Rabbinic commentators. Isaiah 42:1 is applied to the Messiah in the Targum, in the Midrash on Psalm 2, and in Yalkut. See Edersheim, p. 726.
For a compelling argument that Isaiah 42 as a whole is messianic, see Maas, vol. 2, pp. 45 ff. One of Maas’s arguments hinges on the messianic nature of Isaiah 49; see below.
Isaiah 49
On verse 8: “There is a remarkable comment on this in Yalkut on the passage, to the effect that the Messiah suffers in every age for the sins of that generation, but that God would in the day of redemption repair it all (Yalk. ii, p. 52b).” Edersheim p. 726. Numerous verses in this chapter (8, 9, 10, 12, 14, 21, 23) receive messianic interpretations, as Edersheim documents.
For an extensive treatment of the messianic nature of this chapter, including answers to objections, see Maas, vol. 2, pp. 86-94.
Isaiah 52:13-53:12
There is an extensive list for this particular passage in Edersheim, p. 727. There is an outstanding discussion in Maas, vol. 2, pp. 231 ff. See in particular the list in Maas, vol. 2, p. 234, of OT passages that confirm the description, and the list of Jewish commentators who interpret it messianically, pp. 234-37.
Daniel 9:24
In Naz. 32 b this is taken to refer to a time when the second Temple was to be destroyed. See Edersheim, p. 734 and Maas, vol. 1, pp. 299 ff. Note in particular Maas’s reference (p. 304) to Josephus, The Jewish War 4.6.3.
Micah 5:2
Virtually all commentators accept this verse as messianic, from the Targums onward. See Edersheim,  p. 735, and particularly Maas, vol. 1, pp. 274 ff.


Also, my pastor shared this with sermon group, relevant to our church’s “walk to the cross”…what we do to prepare for Easter so that it doesn’t go by so fast we miss it…
Jesus in all the books of the Old Testament (whole Bible actually, but this post is a little more zeroed in on the Old Testament prophecies)…

This entry was posted in Apologetics, Apologetics Toolbox, Tim McGrew. Bookmark the permalink.

Tell it:

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s