Messiah, the Healer of the Sick by
Publication Date: 2003-12-31
Lidija Novakovic offers an explanation of the remarkable link found in the Gospel of Matthew between the royal messianic title Son of David attributed to Jesus and his miracles of healing. There is no doubt that this represents a Christian development, because there is no extant early Jewish text that portrays the Davidic Messiah as a miracle worker. Yet, given the predominantly Jewish character of Matthew's Gospel, the origin of the concept of the healing Messiah should still be sought in the traditions of the Second Temple Judaism. The underlying principle of Matthew's portrayal of Jesus, however, cannot be found in the traditions about Solomon as an exorcist or healer, or about the eschatological prophet like Moses. Rather, the intelligibility of the healing Messiah is secured through Matthew's own skillful interpretation of selected biblical passages, especially from the Book of Isaiah.