Fifty Jewish Messiahs

Fifty Jewish Messiahs

by Jerry Rabow

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It is a little known fact that there have been more than fifty prominent Jewish 'Messiahs'. These characters, though unrenowned today, inspired messianic fervor that at times seized the whole Jewish, Christian, Muslim and even secular worlds. The stories of these fifty Messiahs, both male and female, are unknown - suppressed by Jewish religious authorities or ignored by historians of all religions. Until now.
In Fifty Jewish Messiahs, these Jewish Messiahs are remembered, and now their forgotten stories - whether humorous, bizarre, tragic or solemn - are finally told.
*The Messiah who killed the Pope
*The Messiah who was saved from the Inquisition when the Pope hid him in the Vatican
*The Messiah who demanded that his head be cut off in order to prove his immortality
*The Messiah who defied the Holy Roman Emperor
*The 17th century Messiah whose followers continued their secret society into the 20th century
*And to contemporary times and the story of the late Lubavitcher Rebbe, Menachem Mendel Schneerson, and how he inspired a passionate and devoted following.

Above all, Fifty Jewish Messiahs examines humanity, not divinity, and history rather than theology. Taken together, these intriguing stories paint a vivid portrait of the universal and timeless human need for optimism, and hope in a better future.

Product Details

BN ID: 2940044173446
Publisher: Gefen Publishing House
Publication date: 01/10/2002
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
File size: 1 MB

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50 Jewish Messiahs: The Untold Life Stories of 50 Jewish Messiahs since Jesus 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a sane and sensible look at the major figures who have claimed to be Mosheach. Rabow writes clearly and well, and seems to have no special ax to grind. He points out that most of these Messiahs have brought disaster of one kind of another to the people who followed them. Of course the greatest example and a central one for Jewish history is Shabbetai Zvi. Gershom Scholem the great founding father of scholarly research into the mystical strains of Judaism wrote a monumental work tracing the story of Shabbetai Zvi, and its aftermath. Rabow does not tell the story in the same depth, but he does indicate how a desperate Jewish world followed after Shabbetai Tzvi and lost their possessions and in many cases their lives. He also tells the story of the Donmeh the hidden Sabbatian sect which continued to live three centuries afterward. Rabow also tells the story of the worst of them ethically Jacob Frank. The effect of reading these stories should not be to cancel in each Jewish heart the Messianic expectation but rather to have a certain wariness and reserve before all posssible claimants to the Crown. Fortunately too today thanks to the Jewish return to the land of Israel, and Jewish independance there is not the same desperation there has often been through times of great persecution. Rakow also outlines different Messianic ideas putting special emphasis on the Maimonedean idea of a Messiah as one bringing peace to the world so that Mankind can be occupied with higher spiritual things. This is a very good book, enjoyable and easy to read. Highly recommended.