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The Doctrine of the Messiah in Medieval Jewish Literature
preview of book The Doctrine of the Messiah in Medieval Jewish Literature
text of book The Doctrine of the Messiah in Medieval Jewish Literature

The Doctrine of the Messiah in Medieval Jewish Literature

Publisher: JTSA PRESS
Publication Date: 2011
Original Publication Date: 1932
Subject: Mysticism and kabbalah
Category: General
Number of Pages: 355

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About this title

The present book is the first attempt made to offer a systematic and comprehensive exposition of the Messianic idea among the Jews with a special emphasis on: 1. The doctrinal affirmation of the belief; 2. Messianic exegesis, i.e. ideas derived from Hebrew Scriptures; 3. Biblical poetry; 4. Polemics with Christianity; 5. Traditional Jewish doctrine of resurrection.

The book is intended for the modern reader who seeks definite and  authentic knowledge about the Jewish redeemer, his character, the time of the advent, the reestablishment of the Jewish state (before it actually has happened), the millennium and resurrection.

The five centuries of scholars and thinkers whose views are presented range from the eminent gaon, Saadia to Abrabanel, who survived  by several years the expulsion of Jews from Spain in 1492. Saadia, with whom the geonic era may be said to have closed, articulated in his systematic theology the religious faith and reflections of the Midrashic school. So too, Abrabanel, uninfluenced by the rationalism of Maimonides, Crescas, and others, enunciated the earlier geonic, traditional views. The sages of these five centuries made that period the heyday of intensive and varied Jewish learning. Judaism today is sustained largely by the momentum they gave to it.

Their doctrine of the redemption is still the belief of many Jews today. Furthermore, large portions of Jewish and Christian apologetic literature hinge on the theory of the Messianic advent, which is the original point of difference between Jews and Christians, and has been the subject of acrimonious and unceasing controversy for almost two thousand years. Christian theologians have written very profusely on the subject, since it involves the very foundation of their theology. They have ransacked the Bible, Talmud, Targumim, and Midrash diligently, and have performed pioneer work in collating all predictive and Messiological passages. Save in rare instances, all these studies were undertaken with a Christological bias. In comparison, Jewish Messianic literature has been sparse and purely defensive.

The purpose of this book -- according to its author,-- is to provide exposition of the standard Messianic Jewish doctrine as set forth by leading Jewish  authorities and to show what changes it underwent over discussed period.


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