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Revive Israel Ministries

Is the Name Yeshua Prophesied to be the Name of the Messiah in the Hebrew Scriptures?
April 2001 by Asher Intrater

Every now and then, in sharing with Jewish friends here in Israel about Yeshua (Jesus), I am asked why there is not a prophecy in the Tenach (Hebrew Scriptures) stating that the name of the Messiah would be Yeshua.

In part, that is an irrelevant question, because if there were such an open prophecy, every Jewish mother would have named her child by that name. In Israel, one out of every 10 children is named David, Avi (for Abraham) or Moshe (Moses).

In part, the name of the Messiah is prophesied in the word "salvation," which in the Hebrew is Y'shuah. Every time you see the word salvation in the Tenach, you are seeing the noun equivalent of the name Yeshua.

In addition, the name of Joshua, in Hebrew "Yehoshua," is also a foreshadow of the Messiah. The plan of God in the redemption from Egypt came in two parts: first Moses, then Yehoshua (Joshua, Yeshua). Moses himself, the great lawgiver, was not able to keep all of the Law without sinning in order to enter the Promised Land. That is a foreshadow of the fact that no one is good enough of himself to earn salvation by keeping the Law. When religious Jews tell me that salvation comes through keeping the Law, I point out that even Moses could not pass that mark.

However, both the name of Joshua and the word salvation are indirect prophesies, a foreshadow.
Is there a direct prophecy of the name Yeshua? Actually, yes, there is. I had seen this prophecy years ago, but never mentioned it to anyone. Recently, in conversation, it came up with a few Israeli friends, and they were really blessed by it. So I thought I would share it with you.

As an introduction, we need to know that the word "tsemach" in Hebrew, or "branch" in English, is a title for the Messiah. This is taken from the book of Jeremiah:

Jeremiah 23:5
I will raise up to David a righteous Branch (Tsemach), a King who will reign wisely and do what is just and right in the land.

Both Christian and Jewish scholars accept this code word, Tsemach, as a title for the Messiah.
Knowing this, we can now turn to the direct prophecy of the name of the Messiah:

Zechariah 6:11-12
Take silver and gold and make a crown, and set it on the head of the high priest, Yehoshua son of Yehotsadak. Tell him this is what the Lord almighty says: Here is the man whose name is the branch...

This passage is talking about Yehoshua, the High Priest at the time of the return of the Babylonian exile, who served in the time of Zerubbabel. In referring to him, the Lord says that this is the man whose name is the branch. The Hebrew says, "Hineh eesh tsemach shmo." This could be translated as above, but in understanding that Tsemach-Branch is a code for the Messiah, the phrase could also understood, "Here is the man who has the name of the branch Messiah," or "Here is a man who has the same name as the Messiah."

According to Zechariah 6:11 Yehoshua has the name of the messiah. The messiah, whose code name is branch, will have the same name as Yehoshua the high priest at the time of Zerubbabel. Simply put, the name of the messiah will be Yehoshua.

Some might say that this name is Yehoshua not Yeshua. The answer to that objection is found in the book of Ezra, where the same Yehoshua son of Yehotsadak is also called Yeshua. That's right, the exact name, "Yeshua." Here is the verse:

Ezra 3:8
In the second month of the second year after their arrival at the house of God in Jerusalem, Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, Yeshua son of Yehotsadak and the rest of their brothers the priests and the Levites and all who had returned from the captivity...

In summary, here is the direct prophecy in the Hebrew Bible that the name of the Messiah is Yeshua:
1. Tsemach-Branch is the Messiah - Jeremiah 23:5
2. The name of the Tsemach-Branch Messiah is Yehoshua - Zechariah 6:11-12
3. The name Yehoshua is also Yeshua - Ezra 3:8

The name Yeshua for the Messiah is foreshadowed by the word salvation throughout the Hebrew bible, as well as by Joshua successor of Moses. In addition, it is prophesied directly to be the name of the Messiah in Zechariah chapter 6.


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