In my past discussions with Rabbinical authority, I've been faced with some challenging arguments concerning what the prescribed criteria is for the arrival of the Jewish Messiah. I contend that the only Messiah anointed by God directly is Cyrus which in Hebrew is Koresh. There have been other anointed ones but they have not been anointed directly as it is spelled out in the Tanakh.
The criteria set for the coming Messiah is laid out in Maimonides' Thirteen Principles of Faith which has served as the Rabbinical authority on the matter. There have been divergent opinions concerning each of the opinions which is addressed in this essay by Marc B. Shapiro called Maimonides' Thirteen Principles: The Last Word in Jewish Theology?
This is a very important paper to read as it has been used as the litmus test for all Messianic claims from a Jewish perspective as well as having its impact on fortifying the Christian case for Jesus. The main contention concerning Jesus is his corporality as well as the idolatry associated with Christianity itself in its representations of Jesus as God himself. There is a recognition that Jesus as Son of God is not as problematic - if we can all claim the same status or ability to attain said status.
The issues for the Jews go beyond the criteria for the Messiah as that is only part of the 13 Principles of Faith. Yes - Jews are told that in order to participate in the World to Come - they need to believe in the Messianic principle. This principle from the Jewish perspective is captured in principles 12 and 13. We are talking here about Kingship and Resurrection. These of course are two key themes in the Christ story.
The key phrase from Principle 12 that I'm quoting is from the translation by David R. Blumenthal.
"The Twelfth Principle is [the belief in] the days of the Messiah; to wit, the belief in and the assertion of the truth of his coming. He shall not be a long time and "if he tarries, wait for him (for he shall surely come and he will not tarry) [HAB.2:3]. No time for his coming may be set nor may the verses of Scripture be interpreted to reveal the time of his coming, as our Sages have said "May the wits of those who calculate the date of the end [of the present period of time] be addled" [Sanhedrin", 99b]. One must believe in him by praising him, loving him and praying for his coming according to that which has been revealed by all the prophets from Moses to Malachi. He who doubts him or he who treats his command lightly, says that the Torah, which promised his coming specifically in the readings of "Balaam" and "Atem Nitsavim", is lying. One of the general ideas of the principle is that Israel will have no king except from David and that he will be descended especially from the seed of Solomon. Whoever disobeys the command of this dynasty denies G_D and the verses of the prophets."
So what do we have here exactly? We are told to believe in the Messiah - we already have the Messiah named as Cyrus. We know that he is named by Isaiah - one of the prophets and the entire Tanakh concludes with a verse concerning Cyrus' role of peacemaker at the end of Chronicles II. Why would the entire canonized collection of Jewish writings end with a verse concerning Cyrus is this is not critically important?
We have references to Balaam who basically speaks about the stumbling blocks set before Israel whereas the distractions of our material existence take precedence over our spiritual (ISRAEL) concerns. We are all Israel as the other verse references known as Atem Nitsavim. Here we all stand as part of the covenant - currently and in the future of those who believe in the other 13 principles that are laid which concerns the One and only God that is also of the many - the Universal and the Particular which are the Two Faces of Messianism I've posted and written about.
The Hebrew word for One is Ehad which in Gematria equals 13. Aleph (1), Chai (8) and Dalet (4). 13 also is half of the Tetragrammaton which is God's name so the notion of male and female in Love is also connected with 13. Other meanings include Brightness, Gift or Present and To be high, lift up, to remove to escape.
The Phoenix Lights which showed themselves in the pattern of the one set off from the many speaks to this notion of 13 that of course occurred on the 13th of March, 1997. The other story that features wonders like this is Fatima where the children met with the Virgin apparition on the 13th of the month for several months (see chapter 7 in Oracle of the Phoenix).
13 is the number of the Extraordinary. It is beyond our normal perception of time which is based on twelves. The mythology of the end of days in this time called out the date of 12/21/12 which brings in the same End of the Ordinary.
As I present in the book - the End of "these days" that the 12th Principle speaks to, is the end of this Age. It is a shift from one state to another - not the end of the world or presence on earth as many have interpreted this. The Resurrection which is alluded to in Principle 13, I will address in a future post but basically I believe it's up to us to resurrect the Cyrus in the Mountain to see our Earth as being alive once again - sacred - holy as I have alluded to in my book when I open with the Kidushah - "Holy, Holy, Holy, The Lord of Hosts, The entire world is filled with His Glory.
If we can accomplish this resurrection than we as collective Israel have then fulfilled the requirement that the descendant of wise King Solomon have entered as Kings to our New Jerusalem.