Monday 17 October 2022

The Master’s Seminary Journal 33, 2 (2022)

The latest Master’s Seminary Journal has been posted online, this one focused on the Messiah in the Old Testament.

A pdf of the journal can be downloaded here.

John MacArthur


Abner Chou

“They Were Not Serving Themselves, but You”: Reclaiming the Prophets’ Messianic Intention

This article defends the view that the Old Testament declares Christ from the beginning. However, we must discern Christ in the Old Testament by a careful study of the text and the intent of the text, not by reading new meaning back into the text. The authors of the Old Testament wrote about the Messiah, they knew that other Old Testament authors wrote about the Messiah, and they formed a deep messianic theology. In light of this, it is incumbent upon us to be watchful for how the biblical writers use and reuse words and phrases, how they form connections and patterns, and how they make linguistically distinctive associations in order to develop a messianic theology. In this way, we will be able to identify the messianic character and purpose of the Old Testament authors, and we shall see where they were “predicting the sufferings of Christ and the glories to follow” (1 Pet 1:11).

Iosif J. Zhakevich

Reverse of the Curse: An Allusion to Genesis 3:15 in Psalm 110:1

This study proposes that when David penned Psalm 110:1, he was thinking of Genesis 3:15. The linguistic, literary, and theological correlations between Genesis 3:15 and Psalm 110:1 recommend the conclusion that Psalm 110:1 is consciously alluding to Genesis 3:15. That is to say, the statement in Psalm 110:1 “Until I put Your enemies as a footstool for Your feet” hearkens back to the statement in Genesis 3:15 “And I will put enmity between you and the woman,” in order to cast the text of Psalm 110:1 in light of the text of Genesis 3:15. This allusion to Genesis 3:15, in effect, achieves within Psalm 110:1 a cosmic theological message – the reversal of the curse. These conclusions are further substantiated by the broader interconnectedness between Psalm 110 and Genesis 3:15, by the general association of Psalm 110:1 and Genesis 3 in 1 Corinthians 15:21–28, and by the specific combination of Psalm 110:1 and Genesis 3:15 in Romans 16:20.

Paul Twiss

A Tale of Two Brothers: The Messiah in Genesis 49

Biblical theological efforts to trace the hope of a Messiah have often read Genesis 49:8–12 in isolation from 49:22–26, the blessings of chapter 48, and the Jacob tôledôt as a whole. In turn, this has led to an overly simplistic rendering of Israel’s history – one that neglects the importance of Joseph’s line throughout the remainder of the OT. This paper seeks to address this matter and examine the nature of Jacob’s promises to Judah, in light of those given to Joseph. While both of these brothers play a prominent role in the book of Genesis, at the end of the narrative it is the younger son, Joseph, who receives the blessing of the first-born. Although no comment is made regarding the immediate status of Judah, Jacob’s words anticipate an eventual deliverer who will come from the line of his fourth-born son. This study explains the initial prominence of certain Josephites in Israel’s history, and the subsequent transition wherein God rejects the tribe of Ephraim, and raises up the line of Judah, through which comes the Messiah.

Todd Bolen

The Messiah in Isaiah 7:14: The Virgin Birth

Many evangelical scholars deny that Isaiah’s prophecy of a virgin giving birth to Immanuel directly predicts the birth of Jesus, arguing that the words and syntax of Isaiah 7:14 demand fulfillment in the time of King Ahaz. This article provides three arguments to support a messianic-only interpretation. First, the greater context of chapters 1–12 consistently anticipates immediate judgment upon the nation, with Judah’s hope lying beyond exile when God takes up residence with his people. Second, hermeneutical proposals of double fulfillment are shown to be unconvincing because they lack any basis in the text. Third, analysis of Isaiah 7:14–17 reveals that an 8th-century fulfillment is impossible given the nature of the sign, the meaning of almah, the syntax of the announcement, as well as the child’s name, role, diet, and character. A closer look at the timeline in Isaiah 7:16–17 shows that Immanuel could only be born after the land of Judah was laid waste, a reality that did not occur in the 8th century. This study thus concludes that Matthew and the early church exercised sound exegetical and hermeneutical principles in identifying Jesus as the sole fulfillment of the Isaiah 7:14 prophecy.

Bryan Murphy

Priest According to the Order of Melchizedek

The Messianic Hope of Israel includes more than just the right to rule over all the nations from the Davidic throne. It also incorporates a replacement of the Aaronic priesthood with a priesthood patterned after that of Melchizedek. The evidence for this is found in the predictive promise made by Yahweh through David in Psalm 110. In the New Testament, the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews explains and applies this same promise as a justification for the superiority of Christ to both the Aaronic priesthood and the entire Old Testament sacrificial system. This article will present the case for the Messiah being not only one with a rightful claim to sovereignty over all nations, but also as one appointed eternally as the mediator between God and men.

David Zadok

The Messiah in the Minor Prophets

The Minor Prophets – or, The Twelve – contain an abundance of messianic prophecies that contribute to the anticipation of the coming of the Messiah in the Scriptures. Following the broader storyline of judgment and hope, one finds this thread weaving the Twelve together through the nature of the prophetic ministry to even the historical context in which the ministry of the Minor Prophets occurs. As one grasps this storyline throughout the Twelve, the role of these messianic texts becomes clear as they function to expound the coming hope for a nation that had seen God’s judgment. This paper will study these parts of the text to demonstrate the Messiah’s presence in the Minor Prophets.

Menachem I. Kalisher

Isaiah 52: The Identity and Ministry of the Servant of the LORD

Of paramount importance within the latter sections of the book of Isaiah is identifying the Servant of the LORD and comprehending the nature of His ministry. This paper seeks to unfold Isaiah 52 as the necessary context that informs the content of Isaiah 53:1–12, which is often seen as the lynchpin for understanding the identity and ministry of the Servant. This article shows that as one considers the identity and ministry of the Servant, the list of possible referents is narrowed to a single person, the God-Man Jesus Christ. This narrowing takes place in a variety of ways: through the marvelous deliverance achieved by the Servant, the Servant’s close relationship with Yahweh, the profound suffering to be endured by the Servant, and the Servant’s ultimate subjugation of His enemies.


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