Adrian’s Midrash (A-Drash)
This Week’s Torah Portion: Tazria/Metzora “She will conceive/Leper”
Jeremiah Isaiah 66:1-24
Part 2: Last week we took a close look at the passage found in Deuteronomy 18 regarding the prophet, and how Yeshua fulfills this messianic prophecy (MP). To better understand Passover, we’ll have to determine whether or not the Deuteronomy passage is really pointing to Yeshua (Jesus) or not, you’ll have to make up your own mind; however, I am convinced of the fact.
Also, we discussed the fact that the Spring and Fall Festivals belong to YHWH, and that whether you’re the sojourner (Gentile) or the Hebrew, the feasts were designed for you to set aside your daily humbug and meet with the Great I AM, YHWH.
Now, how, exactly, does Yeshua fulfill the remainder of the MPs in becoming the Passover Lamb? One of the greatest, although there are many, is the middle matzah, which is broken in half. One part of it becomes the Afikomen (GK: He has come), which is wrapped in white linen and then hid until the end of the Seder. And, then, at the end of the meal, after the children find it, the leader or head of the Seder ransoms back the Afikomen and it is consumed as the last item (dessert) to end the Seder. The rabbis, however, refer to the Afikomen as to, “that which comes after (at the end)” or “dessert.”
The Messianic prophecies just in this one aspect of Passover are so astronomical in fulfillment that no ordinary person can orchestrate them on his own. What passage speaks to this? Isaiah fifty-three deals directly with the Afikomen. And, again, this passage is argued among scholars of both Jewish and Christians circles as to its original meaning that it is often overlooked as being authentic to its MP perspective. Let’s take a look at it:
But he was pierced for our rebellion,
crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole.
He was whipped so we could be healed. . . . . He had done no
wrong and had never deceived anyone.
But he was buried like a criminal;
he was put in a rich man’s grave.
But it was YHWH’s good plan to crush him
and cause him grief.
Yet when his life is made an offering for sin,
he will have many descendants.
He will enjoy a long life,
and YHWH’s good plan will prosper in his hands (YHWH mine, Isaiah 53: 5, 9-10, NLT).
This passage has long been known as a messianic prophecy in both Christianity and Judaism. However, more recently, many rabbis have tried to argue that Isaiah 53 is speaking more about the nation of Israel as a whole, rather, than, one singular person. Looking at verse five it renders the words: pierced (wounded), crushed (bruised), and beaten (by his stripes). This is an amazing description of the Unleavened bread consumed at Passover. The matzah has holes, stripes, and bruising on it. It is broken in half, carefully wrapped in a white linen cloth, then brought forward at the end of the Seder. Yeshua was pierced through his side, and then beaten and whipped to the point of no recognition.
In verse 9 the mp speaks to the burial of the Messiah; He was buried among the criminal and placed in a rich man’s tomb (italics mine, Matthew 27:57-61). Verses 10-11 speak to His resurrection and mission. The term, “He will enjoy a long life”is often considered a direct prophecy to the resurrected Messiah. Early rabbinic literature almost always refers to Isaiah 52:13-53:12 as a Messianic passage. The Jerusalem Talmud (Shekalim 5:1) applies 53:12 to Rabbi Akiva, which he declared Bar Kochba to be the Messiah, and then later retracted his statement. The Babylonian Talmud (Sanhedrin 98b) applies Isaiah 53:4 to the Messiah.
Dr. Michel Brown argues this point about mp’s in Isaiah 52 and 53: “ . . . one thing is clear: The ancient rabbis—Traditional Judaism’s most authoritative sources—almost always interpreted Isaiah 53 to an individual rather than to Israel as a whole or to the righteous within Israel, and this individual was most commonly interpreted to be the Messiah.”1
The question one has to ponder is whether you’ll accept this text and the life of Yeshua to be in harmony, or whether or not Yeshua is this individual? The Afikomen, which many have debated over its origins, speaks to a couple of things, loudly: (1) It has been used in the Passover Seder since 70 A.D., by Jews and Gentiles across the world. (2) it speaks loud and clear of Yeshua ben Yosef’s work on the cross. And, (3) the return of the Afikomen—Yeshua ben David—speaks to his resurrection, which leads to his return as King Messiah.
1 Answering Jewish Objections to Jesus, vol. 3, Messianic Objections (Grand Rapids, MI: 2003), p. 60.