“A prophet I shall raise up for them from the midst of their brothers, like you.”—DEUTERONOMY 18:18.
GOD progressively revealed details about the Messiah’s origin and role. Consider a sampling:
What did God promise Abraham about the Messiah?
God told faithful Abraham that the Messiah—the promised “seed”— would be one of his descendants. “By means of your seed all nations of the earth will certainly bless themselves due to the fact that you have listened to my voice.”—Genesis 22:18.
What did God tell Isaac?
God reiterated to Isaac the promise He had made to Abraham: “I will carry out the sworn statement that I swore to Abraham your father, ‘. . . by means of your seed all nations of the earth will certainly bless themselves.’”—Genesis 26:3, 4.
What did Moses say about the Messiah?
When Israel was about to enter the Land of Promise, Moses told the nation: “A prophet from your own midst, from your brothers, like me, is what Jehovah your God will raise up for you—to him you people should listen.”—Deuteronomy 18:15.
What did God promise David about the Messiah?
“I shall certainly raise up your seed after you, which will come out of your inward parts; and I shall indeed firmly establish his kingdom. . . . Your very throne will become one firmly established to time indefinite.”—2 Samuel 7:12, 16.
“I myself shall place him as firstborn, the most high of the kings of the earth. To time indefinite I shall preserve my loving-kindness toward him, and my covenant will be faithful to him. And I shall certainly set up his seed forever and his throne as the days of heaven.”—Psalm 89:27-29 [89:28-30, TNK].
How did the prophet Jeremiah confirm these promises?
What would the Messiah be like?
“Upon him the spirit of Jehovah must settle down, the spirit of wisdom and of understanding, the spirit of counsel and of mightiness, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of Jehovah . . . And with righteousness he must judge the lowly ones, and with uprightness he must give reproof in behalf of the meek ones of the earth. . . . To him even the nations will turn inquiringly.”—Isaiah 11:1, 2, 4, 10.
Where would the Messiah be born?
“You, O Bethlehem Ephrathah, the one too little to get to be among the thousands of Judah, from you there will come out to me the one who is to become ruler in Israel, whose origin is from early times, from the days of time indefinite.”—Micah 5:2 [5:1, TNK].
When would the Messiah arrive?
“There are seventy weeks that have been determined . . . From the going forth of the word to restore and to rebuild Jerusalem until Messiah the Leader, there will be seven weeks, also sixty-two weeks. . . . After the sixty-two weeks Messiah will be cut off, with nothing for himself. And the city and the holy place the people of a leader that is coming will bring to their ruin. . . . And until the end there will be war.” (Daniel 9:24-26) Thus, it was foretold that the Messiah was to appear before the destruction of the Second Temple.
The “seventy weeks” of years—490 years—began in 455 B.C.E., the year that Persian King Artaxerxes gave Nehemiah the commission to restore and rebuild Jerusalem. The 69 weeks “until Messiah the Leader” ended in 29 C.E.*
Why would the Messiah have to die?
Isaiah foretold that the Messiah would be rejected, “severed from the land of the living ones,” and his life would serve “as a guilt offering.” He would “bring a righteous standing to many people; and their errors he himself [would] bear.” (Isaiah 52:13–53:12; Leviticus 7:1) He would provide the sacrifice “to finish off sin, and to make atonement for error.”—Daniel 9:24.
How would the Messiah “cause sacrifice and gift offering to cease”?—Daniel 9:27.
After the Messiah’s perfect sacrifice, other sacrifices would no longer be needed nor mandated by God. That is why God could allow the temple to be destroyed and its sacrifices to cease.
See Insight on the Scriptures, Volume 2, pages 899-904, published by Jehovah’s Witnesses.