The Bridge that God Built. How God Introduced Messiah to His People, and How We Can Introduce Him to them Today . God Built a Prophetic Bridge that spanned 400 years.
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How God Introduced Messiah to His People, and How We Can Introduce Him to them Today
That bridge joined the end of the Old to the beginning of the New. (Isaiah 40:3; Malachi 3:1, 4:5; Luke 1:17)
The Gospels identify John the Baptist as Isaiah’s Voice and Malachi’s Messenger. (Mark 1:2,3; John 1:23)
John came in “the spirit of Elijah” but was not Elijah himself.(Matthew 11:7-14; John 1:19-34)
Large numbers of Jews responded to John’s witness of “the Coming One” by preparing a “highway” for Messiah in their hearts through repentance and water baptism. The leaders of the Jews asked John if he was the Elijah who was to come. (Malachi 4:5). They could not prevent him from preaching to his countrymen, who came from all over to swell the numbers of those who were pressing into the kingdom. (Luke 16:16)
How can we who have accepted Jesus convince the Jews, long persecuted by Christian nations, that he was Messiah?
Perhaps by using the bridge that God built, in the person of John the Baptist, who introduced Jesus as the Promised One.
The Old is seen clearly from the New, as through John’s preaching the light of the Gospel falls on the words of the prophets. Jesus matches the Isaiah 53 description. He has seen his descendents for almost 2000 years – ever since God prolonged his days by raising him from the dead. (Isaiah 53:10) Jesus the Messiah fits the Isaiah 53 Messianic prophecy perfectly!
Most Christians view Mormons as clean-living religious people who read the same Bible, but who add to it the Book of Mormon. The Mormon’s view of the Bible is coloured by the Book of Mormon. This is why we do not accept their religion as a valid branch of the Christian faith.
Jews view Christians in much the same way. We read their Bible but add to it the New Testament, which Jews believe reinterprets and contradicts it.
Or was it? Matthew was inspired to apply Isaiah’s prophecy to Mary, 700 years later, and to use the Greek word parthenos, which specifies a virgin.
Crossed by a “holy generation” then, it is open to all who seek the Messiah.