This leading question is found in the 2nd
Book of Samuel, Chapter 19, verse 10. The circumstances behind that question involved King David, or David Ha’Malech. Many years prior to the events that raised the question, David had been a shepherd boy in the days of Saul, king of Israel. Because of Saul’s disobedience, GOD rejected him and chose David to replace him. Samuel followed GOD’s instructions and anointed David as the successor to Saul, the king. This did not sit well with Saul, especially after David’s spectacular and victorious conquest of Goliath and the Philistines. On their return from the battle, they were met by the women, who danced in their honour and sang,
Saul has slain his thousands, and David, his ten thousands.
Saul was very angry and eyed David from that day forward, and as he nursed his resentment, his hostility grew until he reached the decision to kill David. For the next several years David had to flee from one place to another, in order to escape the murderous rage of his enemy. What a paradox that was. David, whom GOD called a man after His own heart, who had been anointed as the next king by the great Prophet, Samuel, had to suffer rejection and persecution from his own people, and lived the uncertain life of an exile for many years.
But GOD’s judgment eventually overtook Saul, and he died in battle with the Philistines. The army of Israel was overthrown and their enemies reigned supreme in the land. It was one of Israel’s darkest hours. But as so often happened, GOD has His man for the hour. He guided David to Hebron, where David reigned for seven years over his own tribe of Judah.
For several years the other eleven tribes continued to resist and oppose GOD’s choice of David as their appointed king, but David’s patience finally won them over. They came to him and made a covenant with him, and formally anointed him king over Israel when he was thirty years old. It took David several more years to subdue Israel’s enemies and to consolidate his kingdom, but GOD preserved and prospered him in that endeavour. David had riches and honour, a powerful and well-trained army, and a family that would have been the pride of any monarch of that time and culture.
But his troubles were far from over. He made mistakes, as we all do. But the most serious family mistake he committed was to spare his murderous son, Absalom, who had returned from exile. Absalom worked secretly to overthrow his father, David, and succeeded in getting most of the people of Israel on his side. David found out about the plot, almost too late, and had to flee from Jerusalem to save his life. Once again he was a fugitive and rejected by his own people, with this difference. He was the rejected king, whereas before he had been the rejected prince and successor to the kingdom.
Inevitably there followed a brief, but sharp civil war in which Absalom and his fellow rebels were overthrown and slain. It was then that the people of Israel recognized their terrible mistake in rejecting their GOD-appointed king in favour of the upstart, Absalom. They said to one another,
The king saved us from the hand of our enemies; He delivered us from the hand of the Philistines, and now, he has fled from the land because of Absalom. But Absalom, whom we anointed over us has died in battle. Now therefore, why do you say nothing about bringing back the king? They were truly sorry for their mistake, and showed it by seeking to reinstate David as their rightful king. Happily, we read that it turned out that way, and David ended his reign over them with no further dissension.
Allow us to press the matter and to apply the question: have we not, over the centuries, done the same thing? Have we not made the same mistake as our people in the days of Saul and David? Like Israel, we have chosen leaders and messiahs that were harmful to us. People like Bar Kochba, Shabbetai Zevi, to mention only two of the more notorious ones. While all the time we have been guilty of rejecting the Messiah appointed by GOD to save us.
Listen to Isaiah, the Prophet, in Chapter 53, verse 3:
He is despised and rejected by men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief; and we hid, as it were, our faces from Him. He was despised, and we did not esteem Him. Or again, listen to Daniel, the Prophet, in Chapter 9, verses 25 and 26:
Know, therefore, and understand that from the going forth of the command to restore and build Jerusalem until Messiah, the Prince, there shall be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks. The streets shall be built again and the wall, even in troublesome times, and after the sixty-two weeks Messiah shall be cut off, but not for Himself; and the people of the prince Who is to come, shall destroy the city and the sanctuary.
Both these passages speak of our King, Messiah, Who would not only be despised and rejected, but also slain, cut off. The time is also given for this event. What the Tanakh tells us is that Messiah, the Son of David, would suffer rejection as David had done. The time frame is in the days of the Second Temple, and after He, the Messiah, is killed, Jerusalem and the Temple will be destroyed by a foreign army. It would be insulting your intelligence to remind you that that is precisely what has happened. The date in our history was 70 Common Era, Messiah had died before that, and all who came after that date were charlatans and imposters.
Who is this Messiah, and is there any record in our writings about Him? Here is one that is found in the Yom Kippur prayer book: Our righteous anointed is departed from us. Horror has seized us, and we have none to justify us. He hath borne the yoke of our iniquities and our transgression, and is wounded because of our transgression. He beareth our sins on His shoulder that He may find pardon for our iniquities. We shall be healed by His wound at the time that the Eternal will create Him, the Messiah, as a new creature. O bring Him up from the circle of the earth! Raise Him up from Seir to assemble us the second time on Mount Lebanon by the hand of Yinnon.
To return to our query who is this Messiah? None other then YESHUA Ben David, who was the only One who came to take our sins away. How do we know? Because He alone, out of all those who claimed the title, was rejected and despised by Israel, His people. All the rest were forgiven for their false claims; but He remains despised and rejected, just as the prophets foretold. One thing more that He did, that none of the others could. He rose from the dead, and is waiting to hear us say in our repentance:
Now, therefore, why do you say nothing about bringing back the king? When YESHUA took His leave of Jerusalem He said,
See, your house is left to you desolate, and assuredly I say to you, ‘You shall not see Me until the time comes when you say, Blessed is He who comes in the Name of the LORD.’Will you say it? Baruch habba B’Shem Adonai! Blessed be YESHUA, the Messiah of Israel, who comes in the Name of Adonai. Shalom.