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Messiah

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Jesus of Nazareth Mormon
The word Messiah means “anointed one” in Hebrew. Since anointing in ancient tradition signifies that one is chosen for an office, one who is anointed is also one who is chosen. The Jewish messianic tradition holds that "Messiah" will be a future Jewish King from the Davidic line who will rule the Jewish people during the Messianic Age. Most Jews do not expect this messiah to be divine, though the Messianic Age will fulfill the biblical promise of miraculous well-being and peace.

The doctrines and teachings of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints uphold the Christian idea that Old Testament prophecies referred to two comings of the Messiah, that all the prophecies refer to Jesus Christ, the Son of God, and that those Jews who rejected Him did so because they expected a political savior, and not a spiritual savior.

The term Messiah is used only a handful of times in the King James Version of the Bible— Daniel 9:25-26, John 1:41, and John 4:25. Daniel infers that Messiah is Christ: "and...shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself." (Christ died for the sins of all mankind.) John says, "He first findeth his own brother Simon, and saith unto him, We have found the Messias, which is, being interpreted, the Christ;" and "The woman saith unto him, I know that Messias cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come, he will tell us all things."

The term Messiah is much more prevalent in the Book of Mormon, whose people came out of Jerusalem in 600 B.C.—

  • Yea, even six hundred years from the time that my father left Jerusalem, a prophet would the Lord God raise up among the Jews—even a Messiah, or, in other words, a Savior of the world (1 Nephi 10:4).
And he also spake concerning the prophets, how great a number had testified of these things, concerning this Messiah, of whom he had spoken, or this Redeemer of the world (1 Nephi 10:5).
  • And it came to pass after I, Nephi, having heard all the words of my father, concerning the things which he saw in a vision, and also the things which he spake by the power of the Holy Ghost, which power he received by faith on the Son of God—and the Son of God was the Messiah who should come—I, Nephi, was desirous also that I might see, and hear, and know of these things, by the power of the Holy Ghost, which is the gift of God unto gall those who diligently seek him, as well in times of hold as in the time that he should manifest himself unto the children of men (1 Nephi 10:17).
  • And behold it shall come to pass that after the Messiah hath risen from the dead, and hath manifested himself unto his people, unto as many as will believe on his name, behold, Jerusalem shall be destroyed again; for wo unto them that fight against God and the people of his church (2 Nephi 25:14).
Wherefore, he shall bring forth his words unto them, which words shall judge them at the last day, for they shall be given them for the purpose of convincing them of the true Messiah, who was rejected by them; and unto the convincing of them that they need not look forward any more for a Messiah to come, for there should not any come, save it should be a false Messiah which should deceive the people; for there is save one Messiah spoken of by the prophets, and that Messiah is he who should be rejected of the Jews (2 Nephi 25:18).
  • Wherefore, redemption cometh in and through the Holy Messiah; for he is full of grace and truth (2 Nephi 2:6).
  • For behold, did not Moses prophesy unto them concerning the coming of the Messiah, and that God should redeem his people? Yea, and even all the prophets who have prophesied ever since the world began—have they not spoken more or less concerning these things (Mosiah 13: 33)?

Section 13 of the Doctrine and Covenants describes the event wherein John the Baptist, as a resurrected being, conferred the Aaronic Priesthood upon Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery in 1829. John used the following words:

Upon you my fellow servants, in the name of Messiah I confer the Priesthood of Aaron, which holds the keys of the ministering of angels, and of the gospel of repentance, and of baptism by immersion for the remission of sins; and this shall never be taken again from the earth, until the sons of Levi do offer again an offering unto the Lord in righteousness (Doctrine and Covenants 13:1).

The Doctrine and Covenants makes other mention of the Messiah:

  • Which is my word to the Gentile, that soon it may go to the Jew, of whom the Lamanites are a remnant, that they may believe the gospel, and look not for a Messiah to come who has already come (Doctrine and Covenants 19: 27).
  • And may all the scattered remnants of Israel, who have been driven to the ends of the earth, come to a knowledge of the truth, believe in the Messiah, and be redeemed from oppression, and rejoice before thee (Doctrine and Covenants 109: 67).

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