Fervent messianism in the land of Israel in the first century CE is the focus of this lecture, the second in David’s series “The Messianic Idea in Jewish History.”
In the latter years of the second temple in Jerusalem, the atmosphere was rich with apocalyptic eschatology. As a result, several people emerged contending to be the messiah. In this talk, David examines the actions and impact of some of these contenders, with a particular focus on:
- Bar Kokhba.
David also discusses factors contributing to this time of heightened messianic expectation and presentation, including:
- The welding of the pre-exilic ‘ideal ruler’ of Davidic descent with eschatological anticipations,
- The idea of the anointed one,
- The warrior spirit of redemption and the inspiration of the Maccabees in the past,
- The revival of Hebrew,
- The Dead Sea Scrolls,
- The promise of the prophets and the reality of Roman occupation.
David also explores two types of messianic figures presented in Jewish literature – Ben Yosef and Ben David.