Meaning of The Portion That Jesus Allegedly Received

Continued from Part 26

ISAIAH 53:12

53:12:  “I will divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the mighty

There is a great divide between truth (Isaiah) and fiction (the New Testament).

To have or to have nothing that is the question.  What portion did Jesus allegedly have and when did he get it?  How is a Christian interpretation of “I will divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the mighty,” where the servant receives “a portion with the great” to be reconciled with Daniel 9:26:  “And after the sixty-two weeks an anointed one shall be cut off, and he shall have nothing [v’ein lo].”  The correct rendering of v’ein lo is he has nothing” or “he shall have nothing.”  Isaiah speaks of the servant whom he repeatedly refers to as Israel and Daniel speaks of “an anointed one” historically identified with the High Priest Alexander Yannai.   Christians incorrectly identify this anointed one as being Jesus.

Understanding the problem Christians face.

V’ein lo (he shall have nothing) cannot refer to Jesus’ situation at or after death, for, unlike mere mortal bodies which decay after death, Christians claim that Jesus rose bodily into heaven, where he sits at the “right hand of the throne of Majesty.”  V’ein lo certainly could not refer to a lack of wealth or followers, for this would not distinguish Jesus from the great majority of the world’s population.  One who “has nothing” (Daniel 9:26) does not receive “a portion with the great” (Isaiah 53:12), does not rise bodily to heaven (Acts 1:9), and does not sit at the “right hand of the throne of the Majesty” (Hebrews 8:1).  It is precisely with his death that Jesus was allegedly able to attain his rewards.

From their respective contexts, it is clear that, if applied to the Jesus of Christian theology Daniel 9:26 and Isaiah 53:12 would have to apply to a post-resurrection period, as well as cancel each other out.  Therefore, “he shall have nothing” cannot refer to the Jesus of Christian theology.  According to Paul, Jesus came into his greatest rewards only after his earthly death, and, indeed, as a result of that death (Philippians 2:5-11) and John’s Jesus says that “the Father loves me, because I lay down my soul, that I might take it again” (John 10:17).  If verse 12 applies to Jesus, then Daniel’s statement, “he shall have nothing,” cannot refer to him, for Jesus’ rewards could only have been actually guaranteed from the moment he was “cut off.”  To apply these two verses to one individual is self-contradictory.

Jesus’ wealth and power on earth and in heaven

What did Jesus give up in dying a human death?  Jesus had no wealth or power as a human being.  Because he was allegedly a supernatural being, he could expect, on reassuming his heavenly role, to exercise his power as one-third of the triune deity.  Christian theology is saying that Jesus gave up a temporary earthly life as a god-man to return to his role in heaven, where, as part of the triune deity, he reigns as God.  Clearly, it is unreasonable to say that Jesus sacrificed himself for the redemption of mankind when, by his actions, he knowingly gained more than he lost.  As we have seen previously, Paul wrote:

Jesus Christ, who, although he existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, taking the form of a bondservant, and being made in the likeness of men.  And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.  Therefore also God highly exalted him, and bestowed on him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those who are in heaven, and on earth, and under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the Glory of God the Father.  (Philippians 2:5-11)

Paul also said of Jesus:

He [God] raised him [Jesus] from the dead, and seated him at His right hand in the heavenly [places], far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age, but also in the one to come.  And He put all things in subjection under his feet, and gave him as head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all. (Ephesians 1:20-23)

Where is the sacrifice if Jesus came into the world to do certain works knowing that he could not fail and that as a result would be rewarded for doing what he himself ordained for himself as one-third of the Godhead?

© Gerald Sigal