Issues: The Mystery of Isaiah 53
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Do the Hebrew Scriptures point to Y’shua (Jesus)? He said they did: "And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself" (Luke 24: 27). The 53rd chapter of Isaiah stirs much debate. Is it speaking about the Messiah? If so, does it describe Jesus?
In this edition, we tackle this controversy and share the stories of one secular and two Orthodox Jews who were greatly impacted by Isaiah 53 on their way to believing in Y’shua.
If anyone was a skeptic about Jews believing in Jesus, I was. Born to second-generation Jewish American parents in Brooklyn, I experienced much anti-Semitism growing up in the 1950s and ’60s. Since my persecutors weren’t Jewish, I assumed they were Christian. When I was fourteen, there was talk that a certain Jewish family in my neighborhood had converted to Christianity. I was filled with disgust. How could Jews do such a thing?
Many Jewish refugees from Russia settled in Omaha, Nebraska, between the 1880s and World War I. Among them were Debbie Landers’ grandparents. Landers, born Deberah Schwartz in Omaha in 1951, and her younger sister were raised Orthodox by their parents. The...