In Luke 9:18-36, we see references and glimpses of the two roles of Messiah as described in the writings of the rabbis and sages, the Messiah that will suffer, Mashiach ben Yosef and the Messiah that will rule and reign on the throne of his father David, Mashiach ben David. Though many people have either separated these two roles into two messianic figures, picture the suffering one to be the People of Israel as a whole and Mashiach ben David to be the coming messianic king or have left this to past myth, as followers of Yeshua can see these two messianic roles, the one to suffer and the one to reign embodied in Him who is our one righteous Messiah.
This passage begins with Yeshua questioning his talmidim about who people were saying he is. The big question for them to answer is now before them and it will show if they have been true disciples or just those who were just tagging along.
Kefa answered correctly and showed that he knew that Yeshua was the Redeemer that was longed for, yet Yeshua reminds them that before his revelation as the Messianic king there will be rejection and death.
“The Son of Man has to endure much suffering and be rejected by the elders, the head cohanim, and the Torah-teachers; and he has to be put to death; but on the third day, he has to be raised to life.”
So we quickly in these verses get a joining of the two Messiahs of Jewish thought, the Messiah, who will rule and reign, but also will face rejection and death before the ultimate revealing of his glory.
This rejection was foreseen by the prophetic words of Isaiah in his most famous “Servant passages”.
People despised and avoided him, a man of pains, well acquainted with illness. Like someone from whom people turn their faces, he was despised; we did not value him. (Isaiah 53:3)
The Messiah had to fulfill the role of Messiah ben Yosef as much as the role of Messiah ben David and in Yeshua we see this completed.
As this reading concludes we get a brief glimpse of the revelation of King Messiah as Yeshua takes his inner circle of disciples up a mountain where like Moses before them on Mount Sinai, get a brief glimpse of the glory of God as it is revealed this time in Yeshua. For these brief moments the One who will be despised and rejected by men, shows what awaits after his suffering and atonement for sins, the full radiance of the one who is the true servant of God and the one who will rule all creation as King Messiah, as we see the words of the Aleinu fulfilled one day.
May we take time for reflecting on the dual redemptions from Egypt and also redemption from sin by Yeshua through his suffering and death, may we also in this time of remembrance also look forward to that glorious day when the sacrificed lamb will be revealed as the One who is worthy to take up David’s throne and may we join the chorus of those from Yochanan’s revelation of King Messiah:
And I heard every creature in heaven, on earth, under the earth and on the sea – yes, everything in them – saying, “To the One sitting on the throne and to the Lamb belong praise, honor, glory and power forever and ever!” (Rev. 5:13)