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How do I know that someone is Moshiach? Will I just know? Are there requirements? If someone tells me that he is the Moshiach, is he to be believed. It would seem seem strange to say so.

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Here are the Rambam's instructions on how to recognize Moshiach: Melachim U'Milchamotahem 11

A Jewish King from the House of David who learns and observes the Torah (written and oral) and assures that Israel does as well can be presumed to be Moshiach.

If he does so and rebuilds the Beis HaMikdosh and gathers in the exiles he certainly is Moshiach.

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Or, in Hebrew: mechon-mamre.org/i/e511n.htm –  msh210 Oct 10 '11 at 21:12
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Specifically halacha 4 gives pretty clear guidelines. According to it the answer to your last question is most likely 'no', unless you converse with overwhelmingly successful kings of Israel. –  WAF Oct 11 '11 at 0:04
    
the hebrew is important, since it contains a phrase somehow omitted in the translation, וְנִצַּח כָּל הָאֻמּוֹת שֶׁסְּבִיבָיו –  josh waxman Oct 12 '11 at 15:16
    
I think you have things out of order... In fact, R. Kook says specifically, that 'the moshiach' only comes after the exiles have been gathered, based on the Rambam. –  avi Dec 29 '11 at 8:09
    
@avi: doesn't that amount to the same thing, though? Once the exiles have been gathered in and the Beis Hamikdash has been rebuilt, then "the Moshiach" comes - i.e., the person who accomplished all of this is acclaimed as Moshiach. –  Alex Dec 29 '11 at 16:25
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