Mashiach – The Hidden Flower

By Rabbi Dr. Hillel ben David (Greg Killian)



I.  Avraham.. 5

II.  Lot and His Daughters 6

III.  Yitzchak. 7

IV.  Yaaqov. 8

V.  Yehuda. 10

VI.  Oved. 11

VII.  Yishai 12

VIII.  David. 17

IX.  Rehoboam.. 23

X.  Coniah. 24

XI.  Yeshua. 26

XII.  Eretz Israel 31

XIII.  Conclusion. 31



In this study[1] I would like to trace the seed of Mashiach[2] through history. In the process I would like to show that HaShem has a clear pattern for Mashiach. The Mashiach is an incredibly pure person whose Torah and deeds are so incredibly pure that they become the pattern that we must imitate.


What makes the messianic line so interesting is that such an incredibly pure person could emerge from descendants whose apparent misdeeds connote such unimaginable corruption. This is the trickery and scheming that The Holy One, Blessed is He, uses against the klipot in order to free a soul exploited amongst them.[3] This is a very difficult issue that needs to be answered, yet the answer is not easily grasped.


The answer, in part, is that the Mashiach will come at a time when it is impossible, or highly improbable, that He will come, and He will come from a place that seems equally impossible. The circumstances of His birth, his parentage, and His deeds will seem so unlikely as to preclude investigation. This is the impossible, and totally unexpected, pathway that we will study and this is the pathway that we must learn to discern if we are to recognize Mashiach. The Jewish people are expected to expect the unexpected. We are a people of the impossible!


As HaShem plays by the rules of the creation He made, using trickery to outsmart the klipot, He often ends up outsmarting many of us as well. When we judge situations only by how they appear on the surface, we are in danger of misjudging people, events, and things, condemning them rather than appreciating their role within Jewish history.[4]


When we drown in the world of pshat, that is, we only view things on a superficial level, we can end up destroying that which is intrinsically valuable, and saving that which ought to be destroyed. Very little is often what it seems to be on the surface in Jewish history, a major lesson of the Torah, and the underlying teaching of the Torah shebaal Peh. [5]


One of the aspects of the Mashiach’s advent is that His impossible coming from an impossible place will be transformed into the best possible scenario when it is finally understood. Thus the impossible will not only become the possible, but it will become the most obvious pathway.


The outcome of this study, in the hearts of those who study, is emunah, faithful obedience. Normally translated as faith, Emunah has a dual meaning. Etymologically, it is related to the word meaning to train or accustom oneself, and also to the word for power and strength. This definition is very misleading! The basis of Emunah is knowledge! We start with knowledge and then when we are faithfully obedient to that knowledge, we have emunah, we have faith. Emunah is our faithful obedience to a knowledge. Something you connect to so thoroughly that you would give your life for it. Emunah must be the same as the knowledge that you exist. After this is acquired, then one must be faithfully obedient to that knowledge despite the influence of the lower self. The pinnacle of Emunah is to connect with knowledge so thoroughly that you can experience it’s future pleasures, now. Emunah is a zeraim, a seed. Just as you know, without any doubt, that a seed will produce a plant with fruit, if it is properly cared for, so emunah is something you know. It is something that is certain.


The blindness of emunah is that you don’t have the end result now, even though you know what the end result will be.


Lydia Killian, my daughter,

took this picture in my home.


Our Sages teach that a person is a seed. A seed has two possible uses: 


1. It can be eaten as food immediately. A person without emunah will eat the seed now.  A person without emunah is literally eating himself. In the world to come there will be nothing left.


2.  It can be planted so that it will yield fruit forever. In order to yield fruit, it must be planted. A person with emunah will plant the seed. A person with emunah will plant himself and undergo decay in order that he will yield fruit, which yields seeds, which yields fruit … for all eternity.


The seed contains everything, but, it is hidden in the darkness. Emunah is the seed of the next world. If you water and fertilize it correctly, it will disintegrate and only after the disintegration will it begin to sprout and produce more seeds into infinity of fruit production. A seed yields its fruit in the darkness and only with the tremendous faithful obedience to a multitude of tasks by the one who planted it.


The following table compares the formation of a seed to the formation of a human:


A Seed

A Fetus / Baby

A seed begins when the “egg” is fertilized. The seed contains all the genetic material of the parents.

A fetus begins when the “egg” is fertilized. The fetus contains all the genetic material of the parents.

Starts out attached to it’s source of life – the plant.

Starts out attached to it’s source of life – his mother.

Whilst in the pod, the seed does not need water, fertilizer, or soil. It grows well with an environment of air only.

Whilst in the womb, the fetus does not need air, light, space for movement, food, or waste removal. Its lungs are filled with water without ill effect.

The “death process” begins when the seed is viable and the pod splits and it is exposed to the world while still attached to it’s source of life.

The “death process” begins when the baby is viable and the womb opens and it is exposed to the world while still attached to it’s source of life.

During the “death process”, the plant begins to turn brown and becomes desiccated.

During the “death process” the mother looks and sounds like she is dying.

When the seed is detached from it’s source of life, the plant, and falls to the ground. It no longer receives nourishment from the plant.

When the baby is detached from it’s source of life, his mother, and is caught up in the arms of the midwife. It no longer receives food and oxygen from it’s mother.

When it gets covered with dirt, the seed begins dying and decaying.

During birth, the baby’s blood circulation reverses, as a hole in the heart closes, and begins filling the lungs. The baby begins dying in the womb.

Suddenly, the seed can not remain viable without soil, water, fertilizer, and weed control.

Suddenly, the baby can not remain viable without air, light, space for movement, food, and waste removal.

The seed sprouts and begins growing into a mature plant.

The baby grows and begins growing into an adult.

The seed that became a plant, now begins producing fruit and many seeds.

The seed that became a fetus, that became a baby, that became an adult, is now producing many seeds and fruit.



The phase of rational knowledge. It is called “daytime”. During this phase we focus on the outward things because they are the focus.


The phase of blindness is called “night time”. This is related to the concept of night, the time when we can not see. To experience night as it really is, without artificial light, is to experience what emunah really is. During this phase we focus on the inward things because they are the only things we can see with clarity. The blindness of emunah is the blindness of planting a seed. You “know” that a seed can produce much fruit and many more seeds, with an enormous amount of work, when it is planted. We start with knowledge!. It is NOT the idea that I can plant something, anything, and blindly hope that it will produce. Emunah is knowing that a seed will produce!


Before we can have emunah, we need to have knowledge. Before we can have knowledge we must have a place for the knowledge. This place is the possibility that something may be true, it is a doubt. This possibility is enough to start basing our life on this possibility.


Emunah in HaShem is something that must find expression in action. This idea is also repeated in the Nazarean Codicil:


Yaakov (James) 2:17 Even so emunah, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.


The Torah tells us (Shemot, 16:11-12) that when Israel was attacked by Amalek, Moshe raised his hands toward heaven, and, when he did so, Israel was able to overcome its enemy. The Mishnah, in Rosh Hashanah, explains that Moshe's uplifted hands directed the people's attention to HaShem, and their emunah helped bring them victory in battle. In describing Moshe's action, the Torah says, "Vayehi yadav emunah", and his hands were 'emunah', faithful. This means that emunah is something that must be concretized through one's hands, through action. One must express his emunah through the outward actions of his hands. The Talmud, in Shabbat, refers to the mishnaic order of Zeraim as 'Emunah’ and the commentary of Tosafot explains that this is because the act of planting seeds, with the hope that they will ultimately yield a crop, entails a certain degree of emunah.


Shemot (Exodus) 17:12  But Moses’ hands were heavy; and they took a stone, and put it under him, and he sat thereon; and Aaron and Hur stayed up his hands, the one on the one side, and the other on the other side; and his hands were steady (emunah) until the going down of the sun.


Wow! Moshe hands had emunah! We surely can not say that the hands had faith, rather we must say that they were faithfully obedient.


The Talmudic volume about agriculture, usually known as Seder Zeraim ("The Order of Seeds"), has another name: Seder Emunah, ("The Order of Faith"). Think about it, farmers plant seeds in a dark, damp place, where they begin to decay; believing all along that there will be fruit after they water, fertilize, weed, train, and protect from insects and other pests. Thus we learn that the one who plants has emunah (faithful obedience to the tasks at hand) that the order of the world will continue, and his seeds will grow and yield fruit.


The Gemara, in Tractate Shabbat,  based on a verse in Prophets, tells us that the section of Zeraim is referred to as emunah (faithful obedience).  This is because regardless of the quality of the soil, the seeds, and the farmer’s labor, if the rains of blessing and other elements, which are necessary for the growth of the crop, do not happen, there is no harvest.  The farmer, understanding his inadequacy and dependency on the natural order, is therefore compelled to have belief in HaShem. This is the “blind” aspect of faithfulness.


This study is designed to give us knowledge, daat, so that we can begin to be faithfully obedient.


“The advent of Mashiach will be so unexpected that it could not possibly be predicted.”


This pathway is revealed in many regards:  Mashiach is always referred to as a Tzemach, a plant. The aspect of "Tzemach" that is emphasized is that it often remains underground, out of sight, for long periods of time, before rising to the surface, as has Mashiach remained hidden until he will come to the fore. RADAK and Ibn Ezra note that the "gematria", the Hebrew letter sum of numerical equivalents of the word "Tzemach" is the same as that of "Menachem", a name of the Mashiach. The Targum says outright that the meaning of the term is the "Mashiach".


We speak in our prayers, of the messianic era, in a way that is the way of plants: To break forth (from the ground). A seed is the picture of something unexpected. Until a seed is detached from the living plant, detached from its source of life, it can do nothing. Until it is utterly cut off and alone, it can be nothing more than a speck. Until the seed then goes into a hidden place and rots, it can never sprout. This rotting, this disintegration, is the last thing that you would expect from something that is about to yield new life. And just when it seems that all is lost, a new plant bursts through the ground! Consider the following messianic pasukim as an illustration of Mashiach, the plant:


Yeshayahu (Isaiah) 11:10 And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious.


Romans 15:12 And again, Esaias saith, There shall be a root of Jesse, and he that shall rise to reign over the Gentiles; in him shall the Gentiles trust.


Zechariah 3:8 Hear now, O Joshua the high priest, thou, and thy fellows that sit before thee: for they are men wondered at: for, behold, I will bring forth my servant the BRANCH.


Zechariah 6:12 And speak unto him, saying, Thus speaketh HaShem of hosts, saying, Behold the man whose name is The BRANCH; and he shall grow up out of his place, and he shall build the temple of the HaShem:


Yochanan (John) 15:4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.


Yochanan (John) 15:5 I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.


We see this same kind of unexpected result when a caterpillar turns into a butterfly and when a person dies and is resurrected. We must learn to know, and understand, the unexpected process of disintegration which will produce the Mashiach. We must learn to see the hidden flower of Mashiach.


Folks often wonder how the Mashiach can come to our lowly and undeserving generation. Yet, from the illustration of a seed, we can see that this is exactly the time when the Mashiach must come!


The seed of Mashiach will always be found in a hidden place, in the same way that a seed is planted in the ground which is a hidden place. It sprouts in a place which is so dark and seemingly impure, that it could not possibly be so, and yet it is.


If we were to attempt to identify the father and mother of the Mashiach in our generation, where would we look? Would we not look to our Jewish Sages and leaders? Would we not expect the Mashiach to come from a great and worthy family? The reason we look to greatness to find the Mashiach is because we know that “an apple never falls very far from the tree”. A son always resembles his parents. Since we know that the Mashiach is a towering personality of such incredible purity, then we would expect His parents to be great and pure.


What we find, however, is that the messianic seed is always found in circumstances which seem impure, and from parents that seem to be acting in a very lowly manner. As we study, we will find out that appearances can be very deceiving. What looks like sin and impurity turns out to be the most immense mitzva that only the greatest of folks can achieve. We will see that the messianic line has such great people that they have the ability to do a sin “for the sake of heaven”, and thereby change that sin into a mitzva.[6]


The beginning of the messianic revelation is where Yaaqov tried to tell his sons about the final messianic period:


Bereshit (Genesis) 49:1 And Jacob called unto his sons, and said, Gather yourselves together, that I may tell you that which shall befall you in the last days.


His revelation of the messianic pathway was taken away from Yaaqov, and indeed from the world. We were, however, left with some clues as to where the Mashiach would be found:


Sanhedrin 98a R. Joshua b. Levi met Elijah standing by the entrance of R. Simeon b. Yochai’s tomb. He asked him: ‘Have I a portion in the world to come?’ He replied, ‘if this Master desires it.’ R. Joshua b. Levi said, ‘I saw two, but heard the voice of a third.’[7] He then asked him, ‘When will the Messiah come?’ — ‘Go and ask him himself,’ was his reply. ‘Where is he sitting?’ — ‘At the entrance.’[8] And by what sign may I recognize him?’ — ‘He is sitting among the poor lepers: all of them untie [them] all at once, and rebandage them together, whereas he unties and rebandages each separately, [before treating the next], thinking, should I be wanted, [it being time for my appearance as the Messiah] I must not be delayed [through having to bandage a number of sores].’ So he went to him and greeted him, saying, ‘peace upon thee, Master and Teacher.’ ‘peace upon thee, O son of Levi,’ he replied. ‘When wilt thou come Master?’ asked he, ‘To-day’, was his answer. On his returning to Elijah, the latter enquired, ‘What did he say to thee?’ — ‘peace Upon thee, O son of Levi,’ he answered. Thereupon he [Elijah] observed, ‘He thereby assured thee and thy father of [a portion in] the world to come.’ ‘He spoke falsely to me,’ he rejoined, ‘stating that he would come to-day, but has not.’ He [Elijah] answered him, ‘This is what he said to thee, To-day, if ye will hear his voice.’[9]


* * *


The following folks were part of the messianic line. I will highlight their story, their perfections, and the apparent impediments that they pose to the messianic line.


I.  Avraham


Yitzchak was an only son: Is he Paro’s son, or Avimelech’s son? Sarah was taken as wife by Avimelech and by Paro (Bereshit 20). How can we be sure this is Avraham’s son?


In Bereshit 21, the Torah says Ele Toldot Avraham Avraham Holid Et Yitzchak, "These are the children of Avraham, Avraham gave birth to Yitzchak." On this pasuk, Rashi asks why does the pasuk repeat Avraham Holid Et Yitzchak, wouldn't it be enough just to say Vaeleh Toldot Avraham? Rashi says that after HaShem changed Avraham's name, Yitzchak was born to emphasizes Avraham's new name. A second explanation of Rashi is that people were saying that Avimelech was the biological father of Yitzchak, because when Sarah was living with Avraham she was not pregnant. However, when she was with Avimelech for one night, the next Pasuk says that Sarah was pregnant. In order to prevent people from saying this, HaShem made Yitzchak the spitting image of Avraham and the pasuk says Holid Et Yitzchak.


It is worth noting that Sarah became pregnant BECAUSE she prayed for Avimelech and his household that their openings, which had been shut by HaShem, should be opened, especially for pregnancy.


Was Avraham a sterile mule? The midrash indicates that Nimrod and the rest of his folks thought Avraham to be a sterile mule.[10] In the end, Yitzchak was born with the exact appearance of his father, and the Messianic line progressed. He was born with the exact appearance of his father in order that no one should say that he was the son of Avimelech.


SarahAvraham’s wife was ninety years old, and barren. Not only barren, but our Sages teach that she had no womb! This was a clear impediment to the messianic line.


Bereshit (Genesis) 11:30 But Sarai was barren; she had no child.


Yevamoth 64a R. Ammi stated: Abraham and Sarah were originally of doubtful sex; for it is said, Look unto to the rock whence you were hewn[11] and to the hole of the pit[12] whence you were digged,[13] and this is followed by the text, Look unto Abraham your father, and unto Sarah that bore you.[14]


Never the less, Yitzchak’s birth was the proof that HaShem had first created and then opened the barren womb and crafted a son who would be able to ascend the altar, bound as a sacrifice to HaShem. This was the greatness of the messianic line. This was also pattern whereby the messianic line is hidden in impossible situations in order that the unclean forces will suckle elsewhere and be deceived into thinking that the Mashiach will not come from this source.


II.  Lot and His Daughters


Avraham’s nephew was named Lot. In speaking about Lot, the Midrash says the following:


Midrash Rabbah - Genesis XLI:4 HAD FLOCKS, AND HERDS, AND TENTS. R. Tobiah b. R. Yitzchak said: He had two tents, viz. Ruth the Moabitess and Naamah the Ammonitess.2 Similarly it is written, Arise, take thy wife, and thy two daughters that are found (Gen. XIX, 15)3: R. Tobiah said: That means two ‘finds’, viz. Ruth and Naamah. R. Yitzchak commented: I have found David My servant (Ps. LXXXIX, 21): where did I find him? In Sodom[15].


The above Midrash indicates that the Mashiach will be found in Sodom, the most intensely negative and impure place that the world has ever known. There we find Lot and his two daughters:


Bereshit (Genesis) 19:30 And Lot went up out of Zoar, and dwelt in the mountain, and his two daughters with him; for he feared to dwell in Zoar: and he dwelt in a cave, he and his two daughters. 31  And the firstborn said unto the younger, Our father is old, and there is not a man in the earth to come in unto us after the manner of all the earth: 32  Come, let us make our father drink wine, and we will lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father. 33 And they made their father drink wine that night: and the firstborn went in, and lay with her father; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose. 34 And it came to pass on the morrow, that the firstborn said unto the younger, Behold, I lay yesternight with my father: let us make him drink wine this night also; and go thou in, and lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father. 35 And they made their father drink wine that night also: and the younger arose, and lay with him; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose. 36  Thus were both the daughters of Lot with child by their father. 37  And the firstborn bare a son, and called his name Moab: the same is the father of the Moabites unto this day. 38 And the younger, she also bare a son, and called his name Benammi: the same is the father of the children of Ammon unto this day.


Thus we see that Ammon and Moab were born from incest in a place just removed from Sodom. From Moab we find Ruth, and from Ammon we find Naamah:


Ruth 4:13 So Boaz took Ruth, and she was his wife: and when he went in unto her, HaShem gave her conception, and she bare a son. 14 And the women said unto Naomi, Blessed be HaShem, which hath not left thee this day without a kinsman, that his name may be famous in Israel. 15 And he shall be unto thee a restorer of thy life, and a nourisher of thine old age: for thy daughter in law, which loveth thee, which is better to thee than seven sons, hath born him. 16 And Naomi took the child, and laid it in her bosom, and became nurse unto it. 17 And the women her neighbours gave it a name, saying, There is a son born to Naomi; and they called his name Obed: he is the father of Jesse, the father of David.


Melachim Alef (1 Kings) 14:21 And Rehoboam the son of Solomon reigned in Judah. Rehoboam was forty and one years old when he began to reign, and he reigned seventeen years in Jerusalem, the city which HaShem did choose out of all the tribes of Israel, to put his name there. And his mother’s name was Naamah an Ammonitess.


Lot went to Sodom, a proverbially wicked place, to teach the people about HaShem and His ways. On the night that Sodom was destroyed, Lot was enjoying a Purim Seudah and a Pesach seder while feeding two angels. Lot was a very great man. He was great enough that in his merit he and his entire family were extracted before the destruction of Sodom and Gomorra. Thus we find Mashiach in Sodom. HaShem extracted the messianic sparks from the Goyim (Gentiles) and built them into the Mashiach. He built those sparks in a cave of incest. This incest was converted by Lot’s daughter into a very great mitzva (good deed).  So great was the mitzva and the ones who performed it, that the messianic line was drawn through them. Yet, how can incest be a mitzva?


Lot’s two daughters believed that the three of them were the only people left on earth. It was their desire to fulfill the command of HaShem that they should multiply and fill the earth. Since their father was the last man on earth, they thought, therefore they did what to them must have been the most disgusting thing in the whole world, they slept with their own father! Today we find this disgusting, how much more so must it have been with the towering spiritual greatness of Lot’s family. Our Sages teach that is greater to do a sin for the right reason, than to do a mitzva for the wrong reason. Lot’s two daughters did a sin for the sake of Heaven. This was an incredibly great act that was rewarded accordingly.


Never the less, the Mashiach came forth from two incestuous acts in the most depraved place on earth, that is where Mashiach MUST come from! Mashiach will always come from a place where it is impossible for Him to be, yet, He is there.


III.  Yitzchak


Yitzchak died at the Akeida, before he had children, as we see from the Midrash and from the book of Hebrews:


Leviticus Rabbah. 29:9 R. Judah says: When the sword touched Yitzchak's throat his soul flew clean out of him. And when He let his voice be heard from between the two cherubim, 'Lay not thy hand upon the lad, 'the lad's soul returned to his body. Then his father unbound him, and Yitzchak rose, knowing that in this way the dead would come back to life in the future; whereupon he began to recite, Blessed art Thou, O Lord, who quickens the dead. Pirkei de-Rav Eliezer 31


Hebrews 11:17 By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Yitzchak: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten, 18 Of whom it was said, That in Yitzchak shall thy seed be called: 19 Accounting that God was able to raise up, even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a parable.


Zohar 60a “When Yitzchak was sacrificed on the altar, his soul which was in him in This World departed. But when it was said by Abraham, Blessed be He who quickens the dead, his soul of the World to Come came back to him."


Minhat Yehudah, by R. Judah bar Eliezer ad Gen 24:64 and Paaneah Raza by R. Isaac bar Juda ha-Levi, 29a  No wonder Rebeccah lost her equilibrium "and she fell from her camel" (v. 64) - for what she perceived was Yitzchak coming down from Paradise, and he walked the way the dead walked, head down and feet up.


Zevachim 62a As for the Temple, it is well, for its outline was distinguishable; but how did they know [the site of] the altar? — Said R. Eleazar: They saw [in a vision] the altar built, and Michael the great prince standing and offering upon it. While R. Isaac Nappaha said: They saw Yitzchak’s ashes lying in that place. R. Samuel b. Nahman said: From [the site of] the whole House they smelt the odour of incense, while from there [the site of the altar] they smelt the odour of limbs.


Since Yitzchak died, this presents a potential problem for the messianic line in that he had not married and had no children. When Yitzchak died, all of his descendants died with him. Therefore, Yaakov and his twelve sons, the tribes of Israel, all died with him. Of course, they were also resurrected with him!


The mechanism for Yeshua’s salvation of the Gentiles is similar to Yitzchak’s. Yeshua was called by Paul, “the last Adam”, in 1 Corinthians 15:45. This implies that Yeshua and Adam are in some way the same soul. It also implies that everyone who would ever live, was in the loins of Adam. When the last Adam died, all that were in His loins died with Him. When the Last Adam was resurrected, every soul was resurrected with Him.


Thus we understand that Yeshua provided the mechanism of salvation for the Gentile (the whole world), while Yitzchak provided the mechanism for the salvation of every Jew.


Speaking of the binding of Yitzchak, the Zohar teaches that Yitzchak's soul flew from his body at the touch of the knife on his neck, and when his soul returned, he declared: "Blessed are You... Who resurrects the dead." The messianic line will always be found in impossible situations. These are precisely the situations where Mashiach must be found!


Rivka (Rebecca)Yitzchak’s wife was barren. This is also a clear impediment to the messianic line.


Bereshit (Genesis) 25:21 And Yitzchak intreated HaShem for his wife, because she was barren: and HaShem was intreated of him, and Rebekah his wife conceived.


Mashiach will always emerge from impossible situations.


IV.  Yaaqov


Did Yaakov “steal” his father’s blessing by deception? The appearance of theft through deception is so great that the majority of people who read this event come to the conclusion that the blessing was stolen. The forces of evil will not pay attention to folks involved in apparent impurity because they too are deceived. Thus the messianic seed will be preserved and hidden.


Never the less, those who are discerning should be able to see as our Sages have taught, that Yaakov Avinu (our father) was a righteous man and that he performed the will of HaShem when he secured the blessing from his father.


It is axiomatic that a thief does not get to keep stolen goods. How much more will HaShem retract the blessing if the blessing is stolen? Thus our Sages confirm that HaShem had it written that Yitzchak confirmed that Yaakov was to receive the blessing AFTER he was aware of the deception:


Bereshit (Genesis) 27:33 And Isaac trembled very exceedingly, and said, Who? where is he that hath taken venison, and brought it me, and I have eaten of all before thou camest, and have blessed him? yea, and he shall be blessed.


Bereshit (Genesis) 28:1 And Isaac called Jacob, and blessed him, and charged him, and said unto him, Thou shalt not take a wife of the daughters of Canaan. 2 Arise, go to Padanaram, to the house of Bethuel thy mother’s father; and take thee a wife from thence of the daughters of Laban thy mother’s brother. 3 And God Almighty bless thee, and make thee fruitful, and multiply thee, that thou mayest be a multitude of people; 4 And give thee the blessing of Abraham, to thee, and to thy seed with thee; that thou mayest inherit the land wherein thou art a stranger, which God gave unto Abraham.


Why does Yaakov have four wives and two sisters when the Torah forbids this? This is another item of apparent impurity which causes the evil forces to suckle elsewhere.


Vayikra (Leviticus) 18:18 Neither shalt thou take a wife to her sister, to vex her, to uncover her nakedness, beside the other in her life time.


Since the Torah forbids taking two sisters for wives, and since Leah and Rachel were sisters, surely this is an impediment to the messianic line? The evil forces see this as an impediment and will not suckle here, never the less, it is not a problem for the messianic seed.


Our Sages teach: "The prohibition against marrying two sisters did not exist prior to the giving of the Torah at Sinai, as proved by Yaakov's actions."


Ibn Ezra elaborates:  "And God alone plans how things work out, that Rachel died on the way, as they began to enter the land. In her merit, she did not die outside Eretz Yisrael, and in his merit, he did not dwell in Eretz Yisrael married to two sisters, for she was married to him in contravention of the prohibition against marrying sisters. It appears that she fell pregnant with Benyamin before they reached Shechem; Yaakov had no relations with her at all within the land because of the prohibition."


This we see that this appearance of evil was sufficient to distract the evil forces without blemishing the messianic line. Now let’s look at the impediments to Yaakov’s wife, Leah.


Leah also married Yaakov by deception:


Bereshit (Genesis) 29:21 And Yaakov said unto Laban, Give me my wife, for my days are fulfilled, that I may go in unto her. 22 And Laban gathered together all the men of the place, and made a feast. 23 And it came to pass in the evening, that he took Leah his daughter, and brought her to him; and he went in unto her. 24 And Laban gave unto his daughter Leah Zilpah his maid for an handmaid. 25 And it came to pass, that in the morning, behold, it was Leah: and he said to Laban, What is this thou hast done unto me? did not I serve with thee for Rachel? wherefore then hast thou beguiled me?


Is it possible that the messianic line should be built on the deception of Leah?


Leah was Yaakov’s wife through deception. Yaakov was supposed to marry Rachel, but when he awoke in the morning he found Leah. Leah was unloved yet she bore Yehuda and the messianic line.


Bereshit (Genesis) 29:25 "And it was, in the morning, that behold it was Leah!"


Note the difficulty: Was she not Leah the evening before as well? Thus, explains Rashi, that in the evening, under the Chuppah, Yaakov actually thought Leah was Rachel. Yaakov and Rachel, in anticipation of Lavan's treachery, devised a secret sign to allow Yaakov to disclose the deception. However, when Rachel saw her father setting up Leah in her place, she had a change of heart. "My sister will be mortified!" Rachel, overwhelmed by sympathy, gave the secret sign to her sister.


Thus we see that the only deception came from Lavan. Leah and Rachel worked together to build Israel and the messianic line. They built the messianic seed whilst deceiving the evil forces.


Leah, in addition to the above deception, was barren as we can see from the following pasuk:


Bereshit (Genesis) 29:31 And HaShem saw that Leah was hated, so He opened her womb. And Rachel was barren."


Our Sages ask, "Why were all the matriarchs barren?" They reply: Because HaShem, desires the prayers of the righteous. Being barren is definitely an impediment to producing progeny in the messianic line. This barrenness was also sufficient to deceive the evil forces and allow the messianic seed to be built.


V.  Yehuda


Why does Yehuda, the father of kings and the Mashiach, visit a prostitute?


Bereshit (Genesis) 38:12 And in process of time the daughter of Shuah Judah’s wife died; and Judah was comforted, and went up unto his sheepshearers to Timnath, he and his friend Hirah the Adullamite. 13 And it was told Tamar, saying, Behold thy father in law goeth up to Timnath to shear his sheep. 14 And she put her widow’s garments off from her, and covered her with a vail, and wrapped herself, and sat in an open place, which is by the way to Timnath; for she saw that Shelah was grown, and she was not given unto him to wife. 15 When Judah saw her, he thought her to be an harlot; because she had covered her face. 16 And he turned unto her by the way, and said, Go to, I pray thee, let me come in unto thee; (for he knew not that she was his daughter in law.) And she said, What wilt thou give me, that thou mayest come in unto me? 17 And he said, I will send thee a kid from the flock. And she said, Wilt thou give me a pledge, till thou send it? 18 And he said, What pledge shall I give thee? And she said, Thy signet, and thy bracelets, and thy staff that is in thine hand. And he gave it her, and came in unto her, and she conceived by him.


Thus we see that Yehuda engaged in the mitzva of Yibum with Tamar, unknowingly. The following Midrash helps us to understand why Yehudah went to a prostitute:


Midrash Rabbah - Genesis LXXXV:8 WHEN JUDAH SAW HER, etc. (XXXVIII, 15 f.). R. Aha said: A man should become familiar with his wife's sister and with his female relations, so as not to fall into sin through any of them. From whom do you learn this? From Judah: WHEN JUDAH SAW HER, HE THOUGHT HER TO BE A HARLOT; why so? FOR SHE HAD COVERED HER FACE-while in her father-in-law's house.5 Another interpretation: WHEN JUDAH SAW HER he paid no attention to her.6 But since she covered her face he reasoned, If she were a harlot, would she actually cover her face! R. Johanan said: He wished to go on, but the Holy One, blessed be He, made the angel who is in charge of desire appear before him, and he said to him: ‘Whither goest thou, Judah? Whence then are kings to arise, whence are redeemers to arise? ' Thereupon, AND HE TURNED UNTO HER-in despite of himself and against his wish.


Tamar – Why does she play a prostitute? This is clearly a way to muddy the messianic line. Tamar was the daughter of Shem and a Prophetess in her own right. Tamar was an exceedingly great individual. She engaged in the mitzva of Yibum (Levirate Marriage) with Yehuda, knowingly. Tamar clearly understood that this was no sin, but rather a mitzva (good deed) that built the messianic line.


Devarim (Deuteronomy) 25:5 If brethren dwell together, and one of them die, and have no child, the wife of the dead shall not marry without unto a stranger: her husband’s brother shall go in unto her, and take her to him to wife, and perform the duty of an husband’s brother unto her. 6 And it shall be, that the firstborn which she beareth shall succeed in the name of his brother which is dead, that his name be not put out of Israel. 7 And if the man like not to take his brother’s wife, then let his brother’s wife go up to the gate unto the elders, and say, My husband’s brother refuseth to raise up unto his brother a name in Israel, he will not perform the duty of my husband’s brother. 8 Then the elders of his city shall call him, and speak unto him: and if he stand to it, and say, I like not to take her; 9 Then shall his brother’s wife come unto him in the presence of the elders, and loose his shoe from off his foot, and spit in his face, and shall answer and say, So shall it be done unto that man that will not build up his brother’s house. 10 And his name shall be called in Israel, The house of him that hath his shoe loosed.


Bereshit (Genesis) 38:6 And Judah took a wife for Er his firstborn, whose name was Tamar. 7 And Er, Judah’s firstborn, was wicked in the sight of HaShem; and HaShem slew him. 8 And Judah said unto Onan, Go in unto thy brother’s wife, and marry her, and raise up seed to thy brother. 9 And Onan knew that the seed should not be his; and it came to pass, when he went in unto his brother’s wife, that he spilled it on the ground, lest that he should give seed to his brother. 10 And the thing which he did displeased HaShem: wherefore he slew him also. 11 Then said Judah to Tamar his daughter in law, Remain a widow at thy father’s house, till Shelah my son be grown: for he said, Lest peradventure he die also, as his brethren did. And Tamar went and dwelt in her father’s house.


When Tamar finally sleeps with Yehudah and bears twins, she bore one for Er and one for Onan, a perfect Yibum!


Most folks see the encounter between Tamar and Yehudah, in Bereshit (Genesis) 38, as a sin of immorality. Torah, on the other hand, sees this encounter as a very great mitzva. It is a mitzva because Tamar was a childless widow, that her dead husband’s family was commanded to correct. The family was required to raise up seed for the deceased on his land. When Yehudah failed to give his son, Shelah, to fulfill this mitzva, Tamar enticed Yehudah himself to fulfill it. The Midrash records that HaShem sent an angel to “force” Yehudah, against his will, to turn in to Tamar’s tent. The angel asked Yehudah, “If you fail to turn to Tamar; from where will the Mashiach come?”


VI.  Oved


Boaz, Oved’s father - was descended from the harlotry of Yehuda and Tamar. The head of the Sanhedrin and the leader of his generation.


Ruth, Oved’s Mother – How can a Moabite join the congregation of Israel? Further, would HaShem use a Gentile in the messianic line?


Devarim (Deuteronomy) 23:3 An Ammonite or Moabite shall not enter into the congregation of HaShem; even to their tenth generation shall they not enter into the congregation of HaShem for ever:


How can a descendant of incest be a part of the messianic line? Ruth married Boaz who was a descendent of harlotry. The greatest impediment, however, was the fact that Ruth was a Moabite. The oral law explains how this problem is solved:




GEMARA. Whence are these laws inferred? — R. Johanan replied: Scripture stated, And when Sail saw David go forth against the Philistine, he said into Abner, the captain of the host: ‘Abner, whose son is this youth’? And Abner said: ‘As thy soul liveth, O King, I cannot tell’. But did he not know him? Surely it is written, And he loved him greatly; and he became his armour bearer! — He rather made the inquiry concerning his father. But did he not know his father? Surely it is written, And the man was an old man in the days of Saul, stricken in years among them; and Rab or, it might be said, R. Abba, stated that this referred to the father of David, Jesse. who came in with an army and went out with an army! — It is this that Saul meant: Whether he descended from Perez, or from Zerah. If he descended from Perez he would be king, for a king breaks for himself a way and no one can hinder him. If, however, he is descended from Zerah he would only be an important man. What is the reason why he gave instructions that enquiry be made concerning him? — Because it is written, And Saul clad David with his apparel. being of the same size as his, and about Saul it is written, From his shoulders and upward he was higher than any of the people. Doeg the Edomite then said to him, ‘Instead of enquiring whether he is fit to be king or not, enquire rather whether he is permitted to enter the assembly or not’! ‘What is the reason’? ‘Because he is descended from Ruth the Moabitess’. Said Abner to him, ‘We learned: An Ammonite, but not an Ammonitess; A Moabite, but not a Moabitess! But in that case a bastard would’ imply: But not a female bastard?’ — ‘It is written mamzer [Which implies] anyone objectionable’. ‘Does then Egyptian exclude the Egyptian woman’? — ‘Here it is different, since the reason for the Scriptural text is explicitly stated: Because they met you not with bread and with water; it is customary for a man to meet [wayfarers]; It is not, however, customary for a woman to meet [them]’.


Thus we learn that Moabites were excluded, but not a Moabitess. This impediment was so severe that even David, three generations later, had to deal with this issue. Thus we find that Mashiach and His line is found in impossible situations. His line will be mired in apparent impurity.


VII.  Yishai


Yishai – Why did he divorce his wife, Nitzevet? Was David a mamzer (an illegitimate son)?


Nitzevet, Mother of David

The Bold Voice of Silence

By Chana Weisberg

Psalm 69[16] Save me, O G-d, for the waters threaten to engulf me... I am wearied by my calling out and my throat is dry. I've lost hope in waiting... More numerous than the hairs on my head are those who hate me without reason... Must I then repay what I have not stolen? Mighty are those who would cut me down, who are my enemies without cause... O G-d, You know my folly, and my unintended wrongs are not hidden from You...It is for Your sake that I have borne disgrace, that humiliation covers my face. I have become a stranger to my brothers, an alien to my mother's sons.[17] Out of envy for Your House, they ravaged me; the disgraces of those who revile You have fallen upon me...Those who sit by the gate talk about me. I am the taunt of drunkards...Disgrace breaks my heart and I am left deathly sick. I hope for solace but there is none, and for someone to comfort me but I find no one. They put gall into my meal and give me vinegar to quench my thirst...


This Psalm describes the life of a poor, despised and lowly individual who lacks even a single friend to comfort him. It is the voice of a tormented soul who has experienced untold humiliation and disgrace. Through no apparent cause of his own, he is surrounded by enemies who wish to cut him down; even his own brothers are strangers to him, ravaging and reviling him.


Amazingly, this is the voice of the mighty King David, righteous and beloved servant of G-d, feared and awed by all.


King David had many challenges throughout his life. But at what point did this great individual feel so alone, so disgraced, and so undeserving of love and friendship?


What caused King David to face such an intense ignominy, to be shunned by his own brothers in his home ("I have become a stranger to my brothers"), by the Torah sages who sat in judgment at the gates ("those who sit by the gate talk about me"), and by the drunkards on the street corners ("I am the taunt of drunkards")? What had King David done to arouse such ire and contempt? And was there no one, at this time in his life, who would provide him with love, comfort and friendship?


This Psalm, in which King David passionately gives voice to the heaviest burdens of his soul, refers to a period of twenty-eight years, from his earliest childhood until his being crowned as king of the people of Israel by the prophet Samuel.


David was born into the illustrious family of Yishai (Jesse), who served as the head of the Sanhedrin (supreme court of Torah law) and was one of the most distinguished leaders of his generation. Yishai was a man of such greatness that the Talmud (Shabbat 55b) observes that, "Yishai was one of only four righteous individuals who died solely due to the instigation of the serpent"--i.e. only because death was decreed upon the human race when Adam and Eve ate from the Tree of Knowledge at the serpent's instigation, not due to any sin or flaw of his own. David was the youngest in his family, which included seven other illustrious and charismatic brothers.


Yet, when David was born, this prominent family greeted his birth with utter derision and contempt. As David describes quite literally in the Psalm, "I was a stranger to my brothers, a foreigner to my mother's sons...they put gall in my meal and gave me vinegar to quench my thirst."


David was not permitted to eat with the rest of his family, but was assigned to a separate table in the corner. He was given the task of shepherd because "they hoped that a wild beast would come and kill him while he was performing his duties"[18] and for this reason was sent to pasture in dangerous areas full of lions and bears.[19]


Only one individual throughout David's youth was pained by his unjustified plight and felt a deep, unconditional bond of love for the child whom she alone knew was undoubtedly pure. This was King David's mother, Nitzevet bat Adel, who felt the intensity of her youngest child's pain and rejection as her own.


Torn and anguished by David's unwarranted degradation, yet powerless to stop it, Nitzevet stood by the sidelines, in solidarity with him, shunned herself, as she, too, cried rivers of tears, awaiting the time when justice would be served. It would take twenty-eight long years of assault and rejection, suffering and degradation until that justice would finally begin to materialize.


David's Birth


Why was the young David so reviled by his brothers and people?


To understand the hatred directed toward David, we need to investigate the inner workings behind the events, the secret episodes that aren't recorded in the Book of Prophets but alluded to in Midrashim.[20]


David's father, Yishai, was the grandson of Boaz and Ruth. After several years of marriage to his wife, Nitzevet, and after having raised several virtuous children, Yishai began to entertain personal doubts about his ancestry. True, Boaz was the leading Torah authority in his day, but his grandmother, Ruth, was a convert from the nation of Moab, as related in the Book of Ruth.


During Ruth's lifetime, many individuals were doubtful about the legitimacy of her marriage to Boaz. The Torah specifically forbids an Israelite to marry a Moabite convert, since this is the nation that cruelly refused the Jewish people passage through their land, or food and drink to purchase when they wandered in the desert after being freed from Egypt.


Boaz and the sages understood this law, as per the classic interpretation transmitted in the "Oral Torah", as forbidding the conversion of male Moabites (who were the ones responsible for the cruel conduct) while exempting female Moabite converts. With his marriage to Ruth, Boaz hoped to clarify and publicize this Torah law, which was still unknown to the masses.


Boaz died the night after his marriage with Ruth. Ruth had conceived and subsequently gave birth to their son, Oved, the father of Yishai. Some rabble-rousers at the time claimed that Boaz's death verified that his marriage to Ruth the Moabite had indeed been forbidden.


Time would prove differently. Once Oved (called so because he was a true oved, servant of G-d), and later Yishai and his offspring were born, their righteous conduct and prestigious positions proved the legitimacy of their ancestry. It was unquestionable that men of such caliber could have descended from a forbidden union.


However, later in his life, doubt gripped at Yishai's heart, gnawing away at the very foundation of his existence. Being the sincere individual that he was, his integrity compelled him to action.


If Yishai's status was questionable, he was not permitted to remain married to his wife, a veritable Israelite. Disregarding the personal sacrifice, Yishai decided the only solution would be to separate from her, by no longer engaging in marital relations. Yishai's children were aware of this separation.


After a number of years had passed, Yishai longed for an offspring whose ancestry would be unquestionable. His plan was to engage in relations with his Canaanite maidservant.


He said to her: "I will be freeing you, conditionally. If my status as a Jew is legitimate, then you are freed as a proper Jewish convert to marry me. If my status, however, is blemished and I have the legal status of a Moabite convert forbidden to marry an Israelite, I am not giving you your freedom, but as a Shifchah Canaanite, a Canaanite maidservant, you may marry a Moabite convert."


The maidservant was aware of the anguish of her mistress, Nitzevet. She understood her pain in being separated from her husband for so many years. She knew, as well, of Nitzevet's longing for more children.


The empathetic maidservant secretly approached Nitzevet and informed her of Yishai's plan, suggesting a bold counter plan.


"Let us learn from your ancestress and replicate their actions. Switch places with me tonight, just as Leah did with Rachel," she advised.


With a prayer on her lips that her plan succeeds, Nitzevet took the place of her maidservant. That night Nitzevet conceived. Yishai remained unaware of the switch.


After three months, Nitzevet's pregnancy became obvious. Incensed, her sons wished to kill their apparently adulterous mother and the illegitimate fetus that she carried. Nitzevet, for her part, would not embarrass her husband by revealing the truth of what had occurred. Like her ancestress Tamar, who was prepared to be burned alive rather than embarrass Judah[21], Nitzevet chose a vow of silence. And like Tamar, Nitzevet would be rewarded for her silence with a child of greatness who would be the forebear of Mashiach.


Unaware of the truth behind his wife's pregnancy, but having compassion on her, Yishai ordered his sons not to touch her. "Do not kill her! Instead, let the child that will be born be treated as a lowly and despised servant. In this way, everyone will realize that his status is questionable and, as an illegitimate child, he will not marry an Israelite."


From the time of his birth onwards, Nitzevet's son was treated by his brothers as an abominable outcast.[22] Noting the conduct of his brothers, the rest of the community assumed that this youth was a treacherous sinner full of unspeakable guilt.


On the infrequent occasions that Nitzevet's son would return from the pastures to his home in Beit Lechem (Bethlehem), he was shunned by the townspeople. If something was lost or stolen, he was accused as the natural culprit and ordered in the words of the Psalm, to "repay what I have not stolen."


Eventually, the entire lineage of Yishai was questioned, as well as the basis of the original law of the Moabite convert. People claimed that all the positive qualities from Boaz became manifest in Yishai and his illustrious seven sons, while all the negative character traits from Ruth the Moabite clung to this despicable youngest son.


King David's Coronation


We are first introduced to David when the prophet Samuel is commanded to go to Beit Lechem to coronate a new king to replace the rejected King Saul.


Samuel arrives in Beit Lechem and the elders of the city come out to greet him, nervous at this unusual and unexpected visit, since the elderly prophet had stopped circulating throughout the land. The elders feared that Samuel had heard about a grievous sin that was taking place in their city[23]. Perhaps he had come to rebuke them over the behavior of Yishai's despised shepherd boy, living in their midst.


Samuel declared, however, that he had come in peace and asked the elders, and Yishai and his sons, to join him for a sacrificial feast. As an elder, Yishai was invited to the feast, but when his sons were inexplicably also invited, they worried that perhaps the prophet had come to publicly reveal the embarrassing and illegitimate origins of their brother. Unbeknownst to them, Samuel would anoint the new king of Israel at this feast. All that had been revealed to the prophet at this point was that the new king would be a son of Yishai.


"When they came, Samuel saw Eliav (Yishai's oldest son) and he thought, "Surely G-d's anointed stands before Him!"


But G-d said to Samuel, "Don't look at his appearance or his great height, for I have rejected him-G-d does not see with mere eyes, like a man does. G-d sees the heart!"


Then Yishai called Avinadav (his second son) and made him pass before Samuel. He said: "G-d did not choose this one either."


Yishai made Shammah pass, and Samuel said, "G-d has not chosen this one either."


Yishai had his seven sons pass before Samuel. Samuel said to Yishai, "G-d has not chosen any of them." At last Samuel said to Yishai, "Are there no lads remaining?"


He answered, "A small one is left; he is taking care of the sheep."


So Samuel said to him, "Send for him and have him brought; we will not stir until he comes here."

So he sent for him and had him brought-he was of ruddy complexion with red hair, beautiful eyes, and handsome to look at.


G-d said: "Rise up, anoint him, for this is the one!" (I Samuel 16:6-12)


The Small One, Left Behind


As Samuel laid his eyes on Yishai's eldest son, Eliab, he was certain that this was the future king of Israel. Tall, handsome and distinguished, Samuel was ready to anoint him, until G-d reprimanded him not to look at the outside but to the inside[24].


No longer did Samuel make any assumptions of his own, but he waited to be told who was to become the next king. All the seven sons of Yishai had passed before Samuel, and none of them had been chosen.


"Are these all the lads?" Samuel asked. Samuel prophetically chose his words carefully. Had he asked if these were all Yishai's sons, Yishai would have answered affirmatively, that there were no more of his sons, since David was not given the status of a son.


Instead, Yishai answered, "A small one is left; he is taking care of the sheep." David's status was small in Yishai's eyes. He was hoping that Samuel would proceed and allow David to remain where he was, outside of trouble, tending to the sheep, in the faraway pastures.


But Samuel ordered that David immediately be summoned to the feast. A messenger was dispatched to David who, out of respect for the prophet, first went home to wash himself and change his clothes. Unaccustomed to seeing David home at such a time, Nitzevet inquired, "Why did you come home in the middle of the day?"


David explained the reason and Nitzevet answered, "If so, I, too, am accompanying you."


As David arrived, Samuel saw a man "of ruddy complexion, with red hair, beautiful eyes and handsome to look at." David's physical appearance alludes to the differing aspects of his personality. His ruddiness suggests a warlike nature, while his eyes and general appearance indicate kindness and gentility[25].


At first, Samuel doubted whether David could be the one worthy of the kingship, a forerunner of the dynasty that would lead the Jewish people to the end of time. He thought to himself, "This one will shed blood as did the red-headed Esav."[26]


G-d saw, however, that David's greatness was that he would direct his aggressiveness toward positive aims. G-d commanded Samuel, "My anointed one is standing before you, and you remain seated? Arise and anoint David without delay! For he is the one I have chosen!"[27]


As Samuel held the horn of oil, it bubbled, as if it could not wait to drop on David's forehead. When Samuel anointed him, the oil hardened and glistened like pearls and precious stones and the horn remained full.


As Samuel anointed David, the sound of weeping could be heard from outside the great hall. It was the voice of Nitzevet, David's lone supporter and solitary source of comfort.


Her twenty-eight long years of silence in the face of humiliation were finally coming to a close. At last, all would see that the lineage of her youngest son was pure, undefiled by any blemish. Finally, the anguish and humiliation that she and her son had borne would come to an end.

Facing her other sons, Nitzevet exclaimed, "The stone that was reviled by the builders[28] has now become the cornerstone!" (Psalms 118:22)


Humbled, they responded, "This has come from G-d; it was hidden from our eyes" (ibid., verse 23).


Those in the hall cried out in unison, "Long live the king! Long live the king!" Within moments, the once reviled shepherd boy became the anointed future king of Israel.


Nitzevet's Legacy


King David would have many more trials to face until he was acknowledged by the entire nation as the new monarch to replace King Saul. During his kingship, and throughout his life, up until his old age, King David faced many ordeals.


King David possessed many great talents and qualities, which would assist him in attaining the tremendous achievements of his lifetime. Many of these positive qualities were inherited from his illustrious father, Yishai, after whom he is fondly and respectfully called ben Yishai, the son of Yishai.


But it was undoubtedly from his mother that the young David absorbed the fortitude and courage to face his adversaries. From the moment he was born, and during his most tender years, it was Nitzevet who, by example, taught him the essential lesson of valuing every individual's dignity and refraining from embarrassing another, regardless of the personal consequences. It was she who displayed a silent but stoic bravery and dignity in the face of the gravest hardship.


It is from Nitzevet that King David absorbed a strength born from an inner confidence to disregard the callous treatment of the world and find solace in the comfort of one's Maker. It was this strength that would fortify King David to defeat his staunchest antagonists and his most treacherous enemies, as he valiantly fought against the mightiest warriors on behalf of his people.


Nitzevet taught her young child to find the strength in following the path of one's inner convictions, irrespective of the cruelty that might be hurled on him. Her display of patient confidence in the Creator that justice would be served gave David the inner peace and solace that he would need, over and over again, in confronting the formidable challenges in his life. Rather than succumb to his afflictions, rather than become the individual who was shunned by his tormentors, David learned from his mother to stand proud and dignified, feeling consolation in the open pastures in communicating with his Maker.


She demonstrated to him, as well, the necessity of boldness while pursuing the right path. When the situation would call for it, personal risks must be taken. Without her bold action in taking the place of her maidservant that fateful night, the great soul of her youngest child, David, the forebear of Mashiach, would never have descended to this world.


The soul-stirring Psalms composed by King David in his greatest hours of need eloquently describes his suffering and heartache, as well as his faith and conviction. The book of Psalms gives a voice to each of us, and has become the balm to sooth all of our wounds, as we, too, encounter the many personal and communal hardships of life in galut (exile).


As we say these verses, our voices mesh with Nitzevet's, with King David's and with all the voices of those past and present who have experienced unjustified pain, in beseeching our Maker for that time when the "son (descendant) of David" will usher in the era of redemption and true justice will suffuse creation.


Thus we see that the messianic line was hidden from the evil forces because it was mired in apparent immorality.


VIII.  David


Was Solomon born to an adulterer and murderer? David himself was thought to be a mamzer a very impure person who was ostracized and sent to watch sheep to avoid contact with folks. As a shepherd he learned how to be the quintessential role model for the Mashiach.


Bathsheba was David’s paramour, and she was already “married” to Uriyya the Hittite. How can we be sure that Solomon was not Uriyya’s child?


Shmuel (2 Samuel) 11:3 And David sent and enquired after the woman. And one said, Is not this Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriyya the Hittite?


In II Samuel chapters 11 and 12, we find the story I wish to examine.


In this story, many folks see King David lusting after Bat-Sheva, the wife of Uriyya the Hittite. Uriyya is a soldier in King David’s army. He is fighting the King’s battle when King David takes his wife in an adulterous relationship. After she becomes pregnant, King David has Uriyya recalled from the battle and orders him to sleep with his wife, in order to cover up his sin. Afterwards, when Uriyya refuses to sleep with Bat-Sheva, King David Has Uriyya killed in battle. After Uriyya’s death, King David marries Bat-Sheva.


Most folks understand that King David committed adultery and murder. These are the sins that they see King David committing. These apparent sins served to discourage the evil force and hide the Mashiach in another impossible situation. Did King David commit adultery and murder?


Nothing could be farther from the truth.


If we apply the principle of midda keneged midda, measure for measure, we get an entirely different picture. Further, if we examine the Sages, we see that there is more to this story than first meets the eye.


Was King David committing adultery? The Tanach (Old Testament) says no. Nathan the prophet accused King David of theft.


Did King David commit murder? The Tanach says no. How can this be?


The Sages record that King David required that all of his soldiers were required to give their wives a “get”, a divorce, before they went off to battle. This was done so that if the soldier failed to return from the battle, and his body was not found, then the wife would not become an “agunah”, a woman who could not remarry. If she was legally divorced, then she could remarry if her husband did not return after a reasonable amount of time.


Kethuboth 9b Everyone who goes out into the war of the House of David writes for his wife a deed of divorce, for it is written, And to thy brethren shalt thou bring greetings, and take their pledge. What [is the meaning of], ‘and take their pledge’? R. Joseph learnt: Things which are pledged between him and her.


Therefore, we know that Uriyya had given his wife a “get” and was legally divorced. Therefore, we know that King David did not commit adultery. We can know that King David did not commit adultery because the Torah proscribes that the one who commits adultery is to be stoned to death:


Vayikra (Leviticus) 20:10 And the man that committeth adultery with [another] man's wife, [even he] that committeth adultery with his neighbour's wife, the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death. 


Since HaShem did not cause this to happen, we can know that King David did not commit adultery.


Did King Davis lust, sexually, after Bathsheba? No! King David did NOT lust after Bathsheba. He had entirely conquered that evil inclination. The story makes it sound like Bathsheba was taking a bath on her roof without any covering. Nothing could be further from the truth. Bathsheba was coming out from the mikveh, the ritual baptism that women must immerse in every month. As she exited the mikveh house, her exalted spiritual state attracted King David. He prophetically saw that he was to father Solomon with this woman. That is why he took her.


Soncino Zohar, Bereshit, Section 1, Page 73b R. Simeon further discoursed, beginning with the verse: For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me (Ps. LI, 5). He said: ‘How much must a man be on his guard against sinning before the Holy One, blessed be He, for each sin committed by man is recorded on high, and is not blotted out save by much repentance, as it is said, “For though thou wash thee with nitre, and take thee much soap, yet thine iniquity is marked before me” (Jer. II, 22). For when a man commits a sin once before G-d, it leaves a mark, and when he repeats the same sin that mark is deepened, and after a third time it becomes a stain spreading from one side to the other, as expressed in the words, “thine iniquity is become a stain before me” (Ibid.). When David committed his great sin in taking Bath-Sheba, he thought that it would leave its mark forever, but the message came to him, “The Lord also hath put away thy sin, thou shalt not die” (II Sam. XII, 13); i.e. the stain has been removed.’ R. Abba put this question to R. Simeon: ‘Since we have been taught that Bath-Sheba was destined for King David from the day of the creation, how comes it that the Holy One, blessed be He, first gave her to Uriah the Hittite?’ R. Simeon replied: ‘Such is the way of the Holy One, blessed be He; although a woman is destined for a certain man, He first allows her to be the wife of another man until his time arrives. As soon as that time arrives, he departs from the world to make way for the other, although the Holy One, blessed be He, is loth to remove him from the world to make way for the other man before his time arrives. This is the inner reason why Bath-Sheba was given to Uriah first. Now reflect and you will find the reason for the Holy Land having been given to Canaan before Israel came there. You will find that the inner reason underlying the two is the same. Observe, further, that David, although he confessed his sin and repented, could not obliterate from his heart and mind the memory of the sins that he had committed, especially of that concerning Bath-Sheba, and was always apprehensive lest one of them would prove a stumbling-block to him in the hour of danger. Hence he never removed them from his thoughts. According to another interpretation, the words “For I know my transgressions” indicate his knowledge of the diverse grades to which the various sins of men are to be referred, while the words “and my sin” (hatathi=my failing) refer to the defect of the moon, which did not emerge from her impurity until the time of Solomon, when her light once more became whole, so that the world became firmly established and Israel dwelt secure, as it is written: “And Judah and Israel dwelt safely, every man under his vine and under his fig tree” (I Kings V, 5). Nevertheless, as David said, “My deficiency is ever before me”, and that will not be obliterated from the world until the Messiah will come, as it is said: “And the unclean spirit I will cause to pass out from the earth” (Zech. XIII, 2).’


In fact, the Sages teach that King David had asked HaShem for a test in this area because he had completely conquered this inclination.


Soncino Zohar, Bereshit, Section 1, Page 82a David further said to G-d: “Sovereign of the Universe, wherefore do not the Israelites conclude one of their blessings with my name as they do with the name of Abraham, [Tr. note: The first blessing of the Amidah.] of whom it is written ‘I am thy shield’ (Gen. XV, 1)?” G-d replied: “Abraham I have already tried and tested and found to be wholly stedfast.” Said David: “If so, ‘examine me, O Lord, and prove me, try my reins and my heart’ (Ps. XXVI, 2).” When he sinned in the matter of Bathsheba, David remembered what he had said, and he exclaimed “‘Thou hast proved mine heart, thou hast visited me in the night, thou hast tried me and hast not found, my thoughts should not have passed my mouth’ (Ps. XVII, 3). I said, Examine me, O Lord, and prove me, and thou hast proved my heart; I said, Try my reins, and thou hast tried me; but thou hast not found me as I should be; would that what was in my mind had not passed my lips.” (And with all this the Israelites do conclude a blessing with his name. [Tr. note: The third blessing after the Haftarah.]) Therefore David said: “’Thou, O Lord, art a shield about me, my glory and the lifter up of my head’: this grade assuredly is my glory with which I am crowned.” ‘


Did David cause the murder of Uriyya the Hittite? The Tanach says no. How can this be? To understand this part, we must look carefully at the text to understand what is going on:


2 Shmuel (Samuel) 11:8-9 And David said to Uriah, Go down to thy house, and wash thy feet. And Uriah departed out of the king's house, and there followed him a mess [of meat] from the king. But Uriah slept at the door of the king's house with all the servants of his lord, and went not down to his house.


Notice that Uriyya disobeyed a DIRECT ORDER of the King. So, King David gives him a second chance:


2 Shmuel (Samuel) 11:10-12 And when they had told David, saying, Uriah went not down unto his house, David said unto Uriah, Camest thou not from [thy] journey? why [then] didst thou not go down unto thine house? And Uriah said unto David, The ark, and Israel, and Judah, abide in tents; and my lord Joab, and the servants of my lord, are encamped in the open fields; shall I then go into mine house, to eat and to drink, and to lie with my wife? [as] thou livest, and [as] thy soul liveth, I will not do this thing. And David said to Uriah, Tarry here to day also, and to morrow I will let thee depart. So Uriah abode in Jerusalem that day, and the morrow. And when David had called him, he did eat and drink before him; and he made him drunk: and at even he went out to lie on his bed with the servants of his lord, but went not down to his house.


At this point King David has no choice. Uriah has disobeyed a direct order of the king. The penalty for this offense is death.


2 Shmuel (Samuel) 11:14-17 And it came to pass in the morning, that David wrote a letter to Joab, and sent [it] by the hand of Uriah. And he wrote in the letter, saying, Set ye Uriah in the forefront of the hottest battle, and retire ye from him, that he may be smitten, and die. And it came to pass, when Joab observed the city, that he assigned Uriah unto a place where he knew that valiant men [were]. And the men of the city went out, and fought with Joab: and there fell [some] of the people of the servants of David; and Uriah the Hittite died also.


King David knows that Uriah has a good heart, never the less, one MUST obey the King no matter what. Not wishing to publicly shame Uriah, King David has him killed in battle in an honorable manner. Notice that Joab does not protest in the least. Joab knew that the order of the King, as the chief justice, must be obeyed.


Ok, so now we know that King David did NOT commit adultery with Bath-Sheba and that he did not cause Uriah to be murdered. What we need to know is: What was King David’s sin?


HaShem’s punishments are always just. To determine the sin, we should look at the punishment:


2 Shmuel (Samuel) 11:26 And when the wife of Uriah heard that Uriah her husband was dead, she mourned for her husband. And when the mourning was past, David sent and fetched her to his house, and she became his wife, and bare him a son. But the thing that David had done displeased HaShem. And HaShem sent Nathan unto David. And he came unto him, and said unto him, There were two men in one city; the one rich, and the other poor. The rich [man] had exceeding many flocks and herds: But the poor [man] had nothing, save one little ewe lamb, which he had bought and nourished up: and it grew up together with him, and with his children; it did eat of his own meat, and drank of his own cup, and lay in his bosom, and was unto him as a daughter. And there came a traveller unto the rich man, and he spared to take of his own flock and of his own herd, to dress for the wayfaring man that was come unto him; but took the poor man's lamb, and dressed it for the man that was come to him. And David's anger was greatly kindled against the man; and he said to Nathan, [As] HaShem liveth, the man that hath done this [thing] shall surely die: And he shall restore the lamb fourfold, because he did this thing, and because he had no pity.


King David was also the chief Hakhamim, the chief Judge. Nathan the prophet naturally came to the King for a judgment.


David, being a great Torah scholar and Sage, renders a judgment in keeping with Torah. HaShem agreed to this judgment, EXCEPT for the death penalty:


2 Shmuel (Samuel) 12:13 And David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against HaShem. And Nathan said unto David, HaShem also hath put away thy sin; thou shalt not die.


The bottom line is this: HaShem has accused King David of stealing a ewe, a female sheep. The penalty is, therefore, in keeping with the sin:


Shemot (Exodus) 22:1 If a man shall steal an ox, or a sheep, and kill it, or sell it; he shall restore five oxen for an ox, and four sheep for a sheep.


Therefore, King David’s sin was: Theft of a sheep. Now that we have seen the picture, we can begin to understand why HaShem said that David was a man after His own heart:


II Luqas (Acts) 13:22 And when he had removed him, he raised up unto them David to be their king; to whom also he gave testimony, and said, I have found David the [son] of Jesse, a man after mine own heart, which shall fulfill all my will.


HaShem would never say this about an adulterous murderer.


Shabbath 56a R. Samuel b. Nahmani said in R. Jonathan's name: Whoever says that David sinned is merely erring, for it is said, And David behaved himself wisely in all his ways: and the Lord was with him. Is it possible that sin came to his hand, yet the Divine Presence was with him? Then how do I interpret, Wherefore hast thou despised the word of the Lord, to do that which is evil in his sight? He wished to do [evil], but did not. Rab observed: Rabbi, who is descended from David, seeks to defend him, and expounds [the verse] in David's favour. [Thus:] The ‘evil’ [mentioned] here is unlike every other ‘evil’ [mentioned] elsewhere in the Torah. For of every other evil [mentioned] in the Torah it is written, ‘and he did,’ whereas here it is written,’to do’: [this means] that he desired to do, but did not. Thou hast smitten Uriah the Hittite with the sword: thou shouldst have had him tried by the Sanhedrin, but didst not. And hast taken his wife to be thy wife: thou hast marriage rights in her. For R. Samuel b. Nahmani said in R. Jonathan's name: Every one who went out in the wars of the house of David wrote a bill of divorcement for his wife, for it is said, and bring these ten cheeses unto the captain of their thousand, and look how thy brethren fare, and take their pledge [‘arubatham]. What is meant by ‘arubatham? R. Joseph learned: The things which pledge man and woman [to one another]. And thou hast slain him with the sword of the children of Ammon: just as thou art not [to be] punished for the sword of the Ammonites, so art thou not [to be] punished for [the death of] Uriah the Hittite. What is the reason? He was rebellious against royal authority, saying to him, and my lord Joab, and the servants of my lord, are encamped in the open field [etc].


Yoma 22b  R. Huna said: How little does he whom the Lord supports need to grieve or trouble himself! Saul sinned once and it brought [calamity] upon him, David sinned twice and it did not bring evil upon him — What was the one sin of Saul? The affair with Agag. But there was also the matter with Nob, the city of the priests? — [Still] it was because of what happened with Agag that Scripture says: It repenteth Me that I have set up Saul to be king. What were the two sins of David? — The sin against Uriah and that [of counting the people to which] he was enticed. But there was also the matter of Bathsheba? — For that he was punished, as it is written, And he shall restore the lamb fourfold: the child, Amnon, Tamar and Absalom. But for the other sin he was also punished as it is written: So the Lord sent a pestilence upon Israel from the morning even to the time appointed? — There his own body was not punished — But in the former case, too, his own body was not punished either? Not indeed? He was punished on his own body, for Rab Judah said in the name of Rab: For six months David was smitten with leprosy, the Sanhedrin removed from him, and the Shechinah departed from him, as it is written: Let those that fear Thee return unto me, and they that know Thy testimonies, and it is also written: Restore unto me the joy of Thy salvation. But Rab said that David also listened to evil talk? — We hold like Samuel [who says] that David did not do so. And even according to Rab, who says that David listened to calumny, was he not punished for it? For Rab Judah said in the name of Rab. At the time when David said to Mephibosheth: I say: Thou and Ziba divide the land, a heavenly voice came forth to say to him: Rehoboam and Jeroboam will divide the Kingdom.


Never the less, King David did sin grievously for a man in his exalted position with his exalted spiritual status. The Torah is quite blunt regarding the seriousness of King David’s sin:


2 Shmuel (Samuel) 12:7-13 And Nathan said to David, Thou [art] the man. Thus saith HaShem G-d of Israel, I anointed thee king over Israel, and I delivered thee out of the hand of Saul; And I gave thee thy master's house, and thy master's wives into thy bosom, and gave thee the house of Israel and of Judah; and if [that had been] too little, I would moreover have given unto thee such and such things. Wherefore hast thou despised the commandment of HaShem, to do evil in his sight? thou hast killed Uriah the Hittite with the sword, and hast taken his wife [to be] thy wife, and hast slain him with the sword of the children of Ammon. Now therefore the sword shall never depart from thine house; because thou hast despised me, and hast taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be thy wife. Thus saith HaShem, Behold, I will raise up evil against thee out of thine own house, and I will take thy wives before thine eyes, and give [them] unto thy neighbour, and he shall lie with thy wives in the sight of this sun. For thou didst [it] secretly: but I will do this thing before all Israel, and before the sun. And David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against HaShem. And Nathan said unto David, HaShem also hath put away thy sin; thou shalt not die.




1 Melachim (Kings) 15:4-5 Nevertheless for David's sake did HaShem his G-d give him a lamp in Jerusalem, to set up his son after him, and to establish Jerusalem: Because David did [that which was] right in the eyes of HaShem, and turned not aside from any [thing] that he commanded him all the days of his life, save only in the matter of Uriah the Hittite.


We must be very careful not to read into the scriptures more than what should be there.


It is also instructive to note that the union of King David with Bathsheba produced Solomon, the wisest man who ever lived.


2 Shmuel (Samuel) 12:24 And David comforted Bath-sheba his wife, and went in unto her, and lay with her: and she bare a son, and he called his name Solomon: and HaShem loved him.


It is apparent that King David was destined to marry Bathsheba. It seems that his timing was off a bit.


OK, so let’s assume that you have read this far and still think that King David committed adultery and murder, consider the following: Why did the Prophet, Nathan, say that David stole a sheep? What was the point of the Prophet's story?


Now, because of David's greatness, his crime is dealt with in a VERY severe way. It is dealt with as though he committed a murder. In the same way, Moshe lost entry to the promised land simply by hitting a rock.


Also note that the PROPER punishment for murder, is death. David must die IF he committed murder. The Torah is quite clear. Why didn't David die?


The PROPER punishment for committing adultery is DEATH. Why wasn't David stoned?


Since when does the Torah kill my children when I have committed a capital crime? Not even men would do that.


Sanhedrin 107a  Rab Judah said in Rab's name: One should never [intentionally] bring himself to the test, since David king of Israel did so, and fell. He said unto Him, ‘Sovereign of the Universe! Why do we say [in prayer] "The G-d of Abraham, the G-d of Yitzchak, and the G-d of Jacob," but not the G-d of David?’ He replied, ‘They were tried by me, but thou wast not.’ Then, replied he, ‘Sovereign of the Universe, examine and try me’ — as it is written, Examine me, O Lord, and try me. He answered ‘I will test thee, and yet grant thee a special privilege; for I did not inform them [of the nature of their trial beforehand], yet, I inform thee that I will try thee in a matter of adultery.’ Straightway, And it came to pass in an eveningtide, that David arose from off his bed etc. R. Johanan said: He changed his night couch to a day couch, but he forgot the halachah: there is a small organ in man which satisfies him in his hunger but makes him hunger when satisfied. And he walked upon the roof of the king's house: and from the roof he saw a woman washing herself; and the woman was very beautiful to look upon. Now Bath Sheba was cleansing her hair behind a screen, when Satan came to him, appearing in the shape of a bird. He shot an arrow at him, which broke the screen, thus she stood revealed, and he saw her. Immediately, And David sent and enquired after the woman. And one said, Is not this Bath Sheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite? And David sent messengers, and took her, and she came unto him, and he lay with her; for she was purified from her uncleanliness: and she returned unto her house. Thus it is written, Thou host proved mine heart; thou hast visited me in the night; thou host tried me, and shalt find nothing; I am purposed that my mouth shall not transgress. He said thus: ‘Would that a bridle had fallen into the mouth of mine enemy [i.e., himself], that I had not spoken thus.’


Raba expounded: What is meant by the verse, To the Chief Musician, A Psalm of David. In the Lord put I my trust: how say ye to my soul, Flee as a bird to your mountain? David pleaded before the Holy One, blessed be He: ‘Sovereign of the Universe! Forgive me that sin, that men may not say, "Your mountain [sc. the king] has been put to flight by a bird."’


Raba expounded: What is meant by the verse, Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest? David pleaded before the Holy One, blessed be He: ‘Thou knowest full well that had I wished to suppress my lust, I could have done so, but, thought I, let them [the people] not say, "The servant triumphed against his Master."’


Raba expounded: What is meant by the verse, For I am ready to halt, and my sorrow is continually before me? Bath Sheba, the daughter of Eliam, was predestined for David from the six days of Creation, but that she came to him with sorrow. And the school of R. Ishmael taught likewise: She was worthy [i.e., predestined] for David from the six days of Creation, but that he enjoyed her before she was ripe.


Tehillim (Psalms) 51:2-5 Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin [is] ever before me. Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done [this] evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, [and] be clear when thou judgest. Behold, I was shapen in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.


Thus we see the messianic line immersed in apparent immorality which presented another apparently impossible situation.


IX.  Rehoboam


Was Rehoboam a mamzer because Naamah was an Ammonite?


Melachim Alef (1Kings) 14:21 And Rehoboam the son of Solomon reigned in Judah. Rehoboam was forty and one years old when he began to reign, and he reigned seventeen years in Jerusalem, the city which HaShem did choose out of all the tribes of Israel, to put his name there. And his mother’s name was Naamah an Ammonitess.


Naamah – She was Rehoboam’s mother and a descendant of Ammon. How can a descendant of incest be a part of the messianic line, especially given that she is a goy (Gentile)?


Further, would HaShem use a Gentile Ammonite in the messianic line, especially when the Torah makes it explicit that an Ammonite can not enter the congregation of Israel?


Devarim (Deuteronomy) 23:3 An Ammonite or Moabite shall not enter into the congregation of HaShem; even to their tenth generation shall they not enter into the congregation of HaShem for ever:


We have already shown how the Torah forbade the ammonites but did not forbid an Ammonitess. Never the less, this significant issue was sufficient to distract the evil forces and allow the Mashiach to emerge from another impossible situation.


X.  Coniah


Does his curse preclude a messianic descendant? Let’s look first at the curse from HaShem which makes Jeconiah, alias Coniah, an unlikely part of the messianic line:


Jeremiah 22:24  As I live, saith HaShem, though Coniah the son of Jehoiakim king of Judah were the signet upon my right hand, yet would I pluck thee thence; 25  And I will give thee into the hand of them that seek thy life, and into the hand of them whose face thou fearest, even into the hand of Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon, and into the hand of the Chaldeans. 26 And I will cast thee out, and thy mother that bare thee, into another country, where ye were not born; and there shall ye die. 27 But to the land whereunto they desire to return, thither shall they not return. 28 Is this man Coniah a despised broken idol? is he a vessel wherein is no pleasure? wherefore are they cast out, he and his seed, and are cast into a land which they know not? 29 O earth, earth, earth, hear the word of HaShem. 30 Thus saith HaShem, Write ye this man childless, a man that shall not prosper in his days: for no man of his seed shall prosper, sitting upon the throne of David, and ruling any more in Judah.


The easiest answer to this curse is the following passage which also uses a signet ring to connect the curse to it’s solution:


Haggai 2:23 In that day, says HaShem of Hosts, will I take thee, O Zerubbabel, my servant, the son of Shealtiel, says HaShem, and will make thee as a signet ring: for I have chosen thee, says HaShem of Hosts.


To further clarify the issue, lets see how the oral law treats this curse:


Sanhedrin 37b R. Johanan said: Exile atones for everything, for it is written, Thus saith the Lord, write ye this man childless, a man that shall not prosper in his days, for no man of his seed shall prosper sitting upon the throne of David and ruling any more in Judah. Whereas after he [the king] was exiled, it is written, And the sons of Jechoniah, — the same is Assir — Shealtiel his son etc. [He was called] Assir, because his mother conceived him in prison. Shealtiel, because G-d did not plant him in the way that others are planted. We know by tradition that a woman cannot conceive in a standing position. [yet she1 did conceive standing. Another interpretation: Shealtiel, because G-d obtained [of the Heavenly court] absolution from His oath. Zerubbabel [was so called] because he was sown in Babylon. But [his real name was] Nehemiah the son of Hachaliah.

This is the "death blow" to the Jeconiah’s curse. Numerous places in the oral law note that the curse on Jeconiah was annulled because of teshuva:


Midrash Rabbah - Numbers XX:20 Now they made the Calf and deserved to be exterminated, and I would have thought that He would curse and destroy them, yet, no sooner had they repented, than the danger was averted, And the Lord repented of the evil (ib. XXXII, 14). And so in many places. For example, He said about Jekoniah: For no man of his seed shall prosper (Jer. XXII, 30) and it says, I will overthrow the throne of kingdoms, and I will destroy the strength of the kingdoms of the nations... In that day, saith the Lord of hosts, will I take thee, O Zerubbabel, My servant, the son of Shealtiel, saith the Lord, and will make thee as a signet (Hag. II, 22 f.). Thus was annulled that which He had said to his forefather, viz. As I live, saith the Lord, though Coniah the son of Jehoiakim King of Judah were the signet upon My right hand, yet I would pluck thee thence (Jer. XXII, 24). It was the same with the men of Anathoth: There shall be no remnant unto them (ib. XI, 23), yet, because they repented, He preserved them; as it is written, The men of Anathoth, a hundred twenty and eight (Neh. VII, 27). HE HATH NOT BEHELD INIQUITY IN JACOB (XXIII, 21). Balaam said: ' He does not look upon their transgressions and only considers their merits.


Pesikta Rabbati also deals with this curse:


Pesikta Rabbati[29], Piska 47 "R. Joshua ben Levi, however, argued as follows: Repentance sets aside the entire decree, and prayer half the decree. You find that it was so with Jeconiah, king of Judah. For the Holy One, blessed be He, swore in His anger, As I live, saith the Lord, though Coniah the son of Jehoiakim king of Judah were the signet on a hand, yet by My right - note, as R. Meir said, that is was by His right hand that G-d swore - I would pluck thee hence (Jer. 22:24). And what was decreed against Jeconiah? That he dies childless. As is said Write ye this man childless (Jer. 22:40). But as soon as he avowed penitence, the Holy One, blessed be He, set aside the decree, as is shown by Scripture's reference to The sons of Jeconiah - the same is Assir - Shealtiel his son, etc. (1 Chron 3:17). And Scripture says further: In that day . . . will I take thee, O Zerubbabel . . . the son of Shealtiel . . . and will make thee as a signet (Haggai 2:23). Behold, then, how penitence can set aside the entire decree!


The Jewish Encyclopedia[30] says, not only was the curse annulled and the sin forgiven, but that Jeconiah merited to become the ancestor of the Mashiach:


""Jehoiachin's sad experiences changed his nature entirely, and as he repented of the sins which he had committed as king he was pardoned by G-d, who revoked the decree to the effect that none of his descendants should ever become king (Jer. xxii. 30; Pesi., ed. Buber, xxv. 163a, b); he even became the ancestor of the Messiah[31]"


The curse of Jeconiah follows the well established path of the messianic line. The Mashiach is hidden in an impossible situation only to rise triumphant from the quagmire and emerge spotless having turned the situation completely upside down.


XI.  Yeshua


Yeshua – Does a virgin birth preclude the throne of David? Is Yeshua HaShem? Is Yeshua part of a trinity? Did Yeshua spurn the Torah? Why don’t Jews believe in Him?


Obviously it is a serious impediment to the Mashiach if He is not acceptable to the Jewish people. Further, why are His parents very poor whilst previous ancestors, in the messianic line, have been kings and leaders of their generations?


These are some of the questions that have been asked by unlearned skeptics throughout the centuries. They are questions which call into question the messianic aspirations of Yeshua. These are all clear impediments to the messianic line.


Let’s begin this research by examining the texts which speak of Yeshua’s birth:


Matityahu (Matthew) 1:18 Now the birth of Yeshua Mashiach was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost. 19 Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a publick example, was minded to put her away privily. 20 But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. 21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name YESHUA: for he shall save his people from their sins. 22 Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, 23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, G-d with us. 24 Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: 25 And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name Yeshua.


Matityahu (Matthew) 2:1 Now when Yeshua was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, 2  Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him. 3 When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.  4 And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he demanded of them where Mashiach should be born. 5 And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea: for thus it is written by the prophet, 6 And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel. 7 Then Herod, when he had privily called the wise men, enquired of them diligently what time the star appeared. 8 And he sent them to Bethlehem, and said, Go and search diligently for the young child; and when ye have found him, bring me word again, that I may come and worship him also. 9 When they had heard the king, they departed; and, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was. 10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy. 11 And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh. 12 And being warned of G-d in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed into their own country another way. 13 And when they were departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeareth to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I bring thee word: for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him. 14 When he arose, he took the young child and his mother by night, and departed into Egypt: 15 And was there until the death of Herod: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Out of Egypt have I called my son. 16 Then Herod, when he saw that he was mocked of the wise men, was exceeding wroth, and sent forth, and slew all the children that were in Bethlehem, and in all the coasts thereof, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had diligently enquired of the wise men. 17 Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying, 18 In Rama was there a voice heard, lamentation, and weeping, and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children, and would not be comforted, because they are not. 19 But when Herod was dead, behold, an angel of the Lord appeareth in a dream to Joseph in Egypt, 20 Saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and go into the land of Israel: for they are dead which sought the young child’s life. 21 And he arose, and took the young child and his mother, and came into the land of Israel. 22 But when he heard that Archelaus did reign in Judaea in the room of his father Herod, he was afraid to go thither: notwithstanding, being warned of G-d in a dream, he turned aside into the parts of Galilee: 23 And he came and dwelt in a city called Nazareth: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets, He shall be called a Nazarene.


Luqas (Luke) 2:1 And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed. 2  (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.) 3 And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city. 4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:) 5 To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.  6 And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. 7 And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn. 8 And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. 10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. 11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Mashiach the Lord. 12 And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. 13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising G-d, and saying, 14 Glory to G-d in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. 15 And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us. 16 And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. 17 And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child. 18 And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds. 19 But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart. 20 And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising G-d for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.


Christians claim a virgin birth. This claim precludes any messianic possibility because the Mashiach can not inherit the throne of David unless He is a blood descendant through Joseph, his father.


The Mashiach must be descended on his father's side from King David:


Bereshit (Genesis) 49:10 The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be.


Yeshayahu (Isaiah) 11:1 And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots:


According to the Christian claim that Yeshua was the product of a virgin birth, he had no father, and thus could not have possibly fulfilled the messianic requirement of being descended on his father's side from King David!


This claim of a virgin birth will so thoroughly confuse the messianic hope that there will no be a single learned Jew who would entertain the idea.


The virgin birth idea is easily discredited:


John 1:45 they refer to Yeshua specifically as "the son of Joseph."


John 6:42 has the townspeople ask: "Is this not Yeshua, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know?"


Romans 1:1-3 he writes: "I Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle and separated onto the gospel of od...concerning his Son Yeshua HaMashiach our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh."


Finally, if Yeshua was not virgin born, then we have the possibility that His birth was the result of unprotected, premarital sex, because the text explicitly says that Miriam became pregnant before she married Yosef. Further, it is also conceivable that she was too young to have had her first period when she became pregnant.


Yet, we see that Yeshua was born not to the leaders of the generation, or to a king, but rather to poor G-dly parents. There is no hope of an inheritance and therefore there is every expectation that Yeshua will be poor, like his parents. There is also the aspect that any son of David with any messianic expectations, was a sure target by Herod, for death. After all, Herod killed every infant in Bethlehem on declaration by a few Hakhamim that the Mashiach had been born.


The Reigning King


The Apostles, who were all Jews, were constantly wanting to know when Yeshua would reveal Himself as the Mashiach ben David. No one wanted the Mashiach ben Yosef. They wanted to be delivered from their foes and to be a part of the messianic kingdom.


Yeshua, as Mashiach ben Yosef, was the exact opposite of what the Jews were expecting. This alone was sufficient to render Yeshua invisible to learned Jews.


This desire for Mashiach ben David has led many learned Jews to reject Yeshua (Mashiach ben Yosef) for the following reasons: If Yeshua had indeed been the Mashiach (ben David), he would have fulfilled the messianic prophecies mentioned in Tanach (Old Testament). For instance, the Mashiach ben David will bring about universal peace and tran­quility:


Yeshayahu (Isaiah) 2:4 "And they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation; neither shall they learn war any more".


The Mashiach ben David will bring about universal respect for HaShem, and lead all people to follow His ways:


Yeshayahu (Isaiah) 11:9 "The knowledge of HaShem will fill the earth. The world will be filled with the knowledge of HaShem as the water covers the sea".


The Mashiach ben David will cause an ingathering of the Jewish exiles:


Micha 5:2 "Then the residue of his brethren shall return with the children of Israel"


The Mashiach ben David will bring about the rebuilding of the Beit HaMikdash, the Temple:


Zechariah 6:12 And speak unto him, saying, Thus speaketh HaShem of hosts, saying, Behold the man whose name is The BRANCH; and he shall grow up out of his place, and he shall build the temple of HaShem:


The Mashiach ben David will also bring physical cure to all who are sick:


Yeshayahu (Isaiah) 35:5-6 "Then the eye of the blind will be opened, and the ears of the deaf will be unstopped. Then the lame man will leap as a hart, and the tongue of the dumb will sing".


Furthermore, the Mashiach ben David will accomplish these tasks within his own lifetime:


Yeshayahu (Isaiah) 42:4 He shall not fail nor be discouraged, till he have set judgment in the earth: and the isles shall wait for his law.


Thus Jews are looking for Mashiach ben David and this totally obscures the reality of Mashiach ben Yosef.


A Trinitarian Mashiach (May it NEVER be!)


Another attempt to discourage any messianic hope, was to make HaShem into three persons instead of being ehad, one. If Yeshua was a part of a G-dhead of three persons, then there could never be a hope that He would be acceptable to Jews who proclaim Shema twice each day. The Trinity is an idolatrous concept that makes Yeshua anathema to every learned Jew.


The idolatrous concept that HaShem could have parts violates the second of the thirteen principles of faith, formulated by Maimonides, and negates a share in the Olam HaBa by any who abide by it:


The belief in HaShem’s absolute and unparalleled unity.


HaShem in the Flesh (May it NEVER be!)


The idolatrous concept that HaShem could have a physical form violates the third of the thirteen principles of faith and negates a share in the Olam HaBa by any who abide by it:


The belief in HaShem’s noncorporeality, nor that He will be affected by any physical occurrences, such as movement, or rest, or dwelling.


As I have shown elsewhere (conundrum), Yeshua is clearly an Elohim, a judge, yet He is not HaShem because HaShem can not be corporeal, nor can He have parts. The Nazarean Codicil is quite clear in proclaiming that Yeshua is an Elohim whilst declaring that He was Corporeal and therefore not HaShem.


Yeshua is HaShem (May it NEVER be!)


Christianity wishes to insure that no learned Jew would ever see Yeshua as the Mashiach, by saying that He is HaShem. No Learned Jew would ever accept such a proposition as it violates Torah law and the teachings of Chazal.


The idolatrous concept that Yeshua should be worshipped as HaShem violates the fifth of the thirteen principles of faith and negates a share in the Olam HaBa by any who abide by it:


The imperative to worship Him exclusively and no foreign false G-ds.


Why was Yeshua crafted into an idolatrous image that could never be acceptable to learned Jews? Maimonides answered this question for us:


Maimonides states that the popularity of Christianity (and Islam) is part of HaShem’s plan to spread the ideals of Torah throughout the world. This moves society closer to a perfected state of morality and toward a greater understanding of G-d. All this is in preparation for the Messianic age.


Further, Christianity has the monetary resources to translate the Torah and to take that translation to the four corners of the earth. In this task, Christianity has been an unparalleled success. This hiding of Mashiach is essential to the Goyim, the Gentiles, in order that they should have the merit to study Torah and see the truth about Mashiach in the Torah.


Luqas (Luke) 21:24 And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Goyim, until the times of the Goyim be fulfilled.


Yeshua Died: Can He still be Mashiach? The Chabad Rabbis say yes. Here are their sources which I quote from:



Can the Mashiach come from the dead? The answer is surprisingly enough, a resounding yes!


In the second to the last Rashi (the foremost explainer of the scripture and the Talmud, printed in every text) in the book of Daniel, (12:12) he writes: "The Mashiach will reveal himself and then be concealed.... and then revealed once more, and so it says in the Midrash on Ruth and in the poems of Rabbi Eliezer HaKalir."


So it states in the Talmud (Sanhedrin 98b), "If the Mashiach comes from the dead he will be someone like Daniel." Rashi there explains this to mean exactly what it says; Mashiach can come from the dead.


The great and holy scholar, Rabbi Chiam Midini, in his work Sdei Chemed (Peyas HaSadeh, Maareches "Alef", os Eyin), elaborates on this, and connects this Talmudic statement to an earlier one (ibid 98a) referring to the prophecy of Daniel: "If the generation is fortunate the Mashiach will come from the dead, i.e. on "clouds of heaven," and then everyone will accept him with no reservations. But if not he will come from the living, i.e. riding on a donkey (lit. "chamor", which also means "physical" in Hebrew)". And so agrees the Holy Chacham Yosef Chiam (The Ben Ish Chai) in his commentary on Sanhedrin 98 in his book "Ben Yhoyada", that Mashiach can come from the dead. (he also explains the topic there of Mashiach ben Yosef and how he can also be Mashiach)


The Zohar in Parshat Balak (pg. 203b) states that the Mashiach will have to "die"' i.e. go to a higher spiritual level, and return again with the new level he has attained.


So writes the famous Rabbi Yitzchak Luria in the thirteenth chapter of his work "Shaar HaGilgulim", that after the Mashiach arrives, he will be hidden in heaven like Moshe was hidden on Mount Sinai, and then he will appear again.


Finally, the Abarbanel states in his book "Yeshuot Moshicho" (Part 2, topic 2, chapter 1) that "the Mashiach will have to die in order to purify the generation...and he will wait in a spiritual state in 'heaven' until it he rises from the dead, as it says in the Talmud Sanhedrin (98b).


All the above were sources from several hundred years ago supporting the idea that Mashiach CAN come from the dead.


* * *


Even a translation of the Tanach contains enough truth for a Goy to learn how and where he needs to go to learn Torah properly:


Mashiach, The Hidden FlowerYeshayahu (Isaiah) 42:6 I HaShem have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the Goyim;


Yeshua ben Yosef follows exactly the same pattern that we have seen repeatedly in the messianic line. He is obscured in apparent anti-Torah, idolatrous circumstances, all impossible circumstances. It takes an incredibly discerning individual to begin to peel away the layers of Christianity to reveal the towering Torah genius of the Mashiach ben Yosef.


If we were to attempt to identify the father and mother of the Mashiach in that generation, where would we look? Would we not look to a Jewish couple who were poor and lowly as befits Mashiach ben Yosef? Would we not expect the Mashiach to come from a lowly and worthy family, perhaps even one of the thirty-six hidden righteous men? The reason we look to lowliness to find the Mashiach is because we know that “an apple never falls very far from the tree”. A son always resembles his parents. Since we know that the Mashiach ben Yosef is a poor and lowly man of incredible purity, then we would expect His parents to be lowly and pure.


This is in contradistinction to the lineage that must produce the Mashiach ben David. Mashiach ben David will be a mighty ruler and thus he will be descended from such parents.


The Genealogy of Matityahu


The genealogy of Yeshua is in Matthew 1. There the Gospel writer trims the well-known lineage of David to a neat forty-two names: three sets of 14 (Mt 1:17). Why would Matthew play so fast and loose with genealogical accuracy? It is no coincidence that the name David, in Hebrew, has three letters (דוד), whose total numerical value is 14 (each letter of the Hebrew alphabet represents a number; ד = 4, ו = 6).


XII.  Eretz Israel


The state of modern day Israel was formed May 8, 1948. It was formed as a secular state, as a parliamentary democracy. HaShem was nowhere to be found, in the founding of the state of Israel. Israel was founded by Zionists, not by the religious.


If the redemption of all Israel was to have its perfect completion, then the land of Israel must be a Monarchy led by HaShem. By founding a secular state, the appearance of evil was manifest. To this day, Israel remains a secular state ruled by secularists who do not put HaShem first. How can the Mashiach be revealed from such a place?


XIII.  Conclusion


Why does HaShem conceal the messianic line in apparent impurity? Because the impure spiritual forces suckle from the pure. The impure forces pay no attention to those mired in impurity because there is nothing to suckle from impurity. Even though there is no actual impurity in the messianic line, the impure forces are easily fooled and deceived, as are ignorant men.


So, HaShem disguises great purity and spiritual greatness with the appearance of impurity, in order that He might rectify the world and bring forth Mashiach into the light. Thus we see that Mashiach is the hidden flower which springs forth from a seed which seems to decay just before it sprouts forth anew!










Lot’s younger daughter

Lot fathers Moab through incest with his younger daughter.


Moab the mamzer

Avraham ben Terach


Abraham was a sterile mule.

King Avraham

Sarah was barren

Yitzchak ben Avraham


Rivka was barren


Rivka was barren

Yaakov ben Yitzchak


Yaakov had four wives


Yaakov married four wives who were sisters.

Yehuda ben Yaakov

Tamar bat Shem

Tamar played the harlot.

Boaz ben Salmon

Yehuda visited a harlot.

Tamar played the harlot.

Boaz ben Salmon

Ruth bat Eglon

Moabites may not enter the congregation of Israel.


Ruth is a Gentile from Moab and wife to Boaz through chalitza.

Yishai ben Oved

Nitzevet bat Adel

Canaanite Maidservant

Yishai fathers David with Nitzevet thinking she is a Canaanite maidservant.

Yishai Ben Oved

Yishai the Moabite

David the mamzer

Nitzevet the adulteress

David ben Yishai


David and Bathsheba, who is called Uriah’s wife, produce Solomon.

David Melech Israel

Bathsheba the adulteress.

David the murderer.

Solomon ben David

Naamah the Ammonitess

Ammonites may not enter the congregation of Israel.

Solomon ben David

Rehoboam’s mother was an Ammonitess.

Jeconiah ben Jehoiakim


Curse on his descendants.

Jeconiah ben Jehoiakim

Curse that his descendants would not prosper.

Yosef ben Matthan


Apparent pre-marital sex.

Three Hakhamim (Wise men)

Christians claim a virgin birth.

Jews claim a Torah violator.



Possible Impurity

Proven Purity

Avraham & Sarah beget Yitzchak.

Was with Abimelech just before she got pregnant.

Yitzchak looked just like Avraham.




Lot & daughters beget Benammi and Moab.

Appears to be incest.

Chazal teach it was a sin for the sake of heaven.




Yehuda and Tamar beget Peretz and Zerah.

Tamar concieves while playing a prostitute.

Tamar has Yehuda’s staff and signet ring.




Boaz and Ruth the Moabite beget Oved.

Moabites cannot enter the congregation of Israel.

Only applies to male Moabites.




Yishai and Nitzevet beget David.

Yishai had separated from Nitzevet at the time.

David was anointed King of Israel by Samuel the Prophet.




David and Batsheva beget Solomon.

Many thought David to be an adulterer and a murderer.

David was called a man after God’s own heart.




Solomon and Naamah beget Rehoboam.

Ammonites cannot enter the congregation of Israel.

Only applies to male Ammonites.




Joseph and Mary beget Yeshua.

Christians teach an immaculate conception and Joseph was not the father.

Yeshua can only sit on David’s throne if Joseph was indeed the father.








This study was written by

Rabbi Dr. Hillel ben David

(Greg Killian).

Comments may be submitted to:


Rabbi Dr. Greg Killian

4544 Highline Drive SE

Olympia, WA 98501


Internet address:  gkilli@aol.com

Web page:  http://www.betemunah.org/


(360) 918-2905


Return to The WATCHMAN home page

Send comments to Greg Killian at his email address: gkilli@aol.com


[1] I learned much of this study from my teacher Hakham Dr. Yosef ben Haggai and Rabbi Dr. Akiva Tatz.

[2] Mashiach is a transliteration of the Hebrew word that is normally translated as “messiah”. This word means “anointed one”, and is the normal term applied to Jewish kings and priests.

[3] Sha'ar HaGilgulim, Chapter 38

[4] Think about how roundly Yeshua is condemned by most Jews today. Notice that most never even bother to check Him out. This is how the klipot are outsmarted – and many Jews as well.

[5] The oral Torah.

[6] Nazir 23a

[7] I.e., he saw only himself and Elijah there, but heard a third voice — that of the Shechinah.

[8] Cur. edd. read ‘ . . . of the town:’ The Wilna Gaon deletes this and substitutes ‘of Rome.’

[9] Psalm 45:7, thus he made his coming conditional-the condition was unfulfilled.

[10] Bereshit Rabbah 38:6

[11] Allusion to the male organ. It was hewn but was not there originally.

[12] Allusion to that of the female. Cf supra n. 9. Here the deduction is from digged.

[13]  Isa. 51:1.

[14]  Ibid. 2. This verse explains to whom v. 1 alludes.

[15] He was descended from Lot who was saved from the destruction of Sodom.

[16] Translation taken from The Living Nach, published by Moznayim.

[17] Targum:  69:9. I have been accounted a stranger to my brothers, and I am like a Gentile to the sons of my mother.

[18] Siftei Kohen, Parshat Vayeishev.

[19] Srr I Samuel 17:34-36.

[20] The story and concepts in this chapter are based on Yalkut HaMairi, as well as Sefer Hatodaah (section on Sivan and Shavuot). See also an interesting English rendition in the book Don't Give Up p.187ff.

[21] See Genesis chapter 38, and Midrashim and Commentaries on that chapter.

[22] In the verse in the Psalm where David says he was a "stranger" to his brothers, the Hebrew word for stranger, muzar, is from the same root as mamzer--bastard, illegitimate offspring.

[23] Radak and Abarbanel on I Samuel 16:3.

[24] A short while after this coronation feast, David was instructed by his father to visit Eliab at the battlefield. A war with the Phillistines was imminent, and Eliab lashed out in anger at David. This tendency to anger disqualified Eliab now from the throne. (This event occurred after David was crowned king. However, according to commentaries, it is possible that they didn't understand the implications of the anointing, assuming that Shmuel was anointing David as a new student in his school of prophecy. Though this was an honor, and an act that would validate David's lineage, only once David actually became king to the entire nation did his brothers realize his true greatness.)

[25] Malbim.

[26] Midrash Rabbah, Bereshit 63:8.

[27] Midrash Tanchuma, Va'eira 6.

[28] The Hebrew word in this verse for "builders," bonim, is the same root as the word for "sons."

[29] Translated by William G. Braude, Yale University Press, pg. 797-798

[30] Entry on Jehoiachin

[31] Tan., Toledot, 20 [ed. Buber, i. 140]