Jews believe that the Messiah has not yet come yet; we see that most of the Jews of the world have already gathered in a geography which they claim to be Israel, so the exile has practically ended. They have constructed a nation and named it Israel. So does that mean that the first prime minister(Head) of the current Israel could be the awaited Messiah the succeeding ministers being the successor of the Messiah ?
- Anybody can ask a question
- Anybody can answer
- The best answers are voted up and rise to the top
No. See the following list from the Rambam of what Mashiach will/must do:
No, and I'll explain why: First, as per this list, only 42.5% of world Jewry was in Israel in 2010, so "most" of the Jews are not in Israel.
Second, the exile is a function of lost spirituality, not just physical presence. The return to Zion will end the exile when god decides we are on the spiritual level for the proper return. Simply moving there, while efficacious towards many ends, is not a way to jump over our current spiritual status.
Third, the nation constructed is a modern political entity, not a theocratic kingdom of Israel. Had the messiah already come via the first prime minister, we would have a religious state, not a secular one with aspects of religiosity. (and other aspects of religion would infuse all mankind).
Fourth, the first prime minister was not the messiah because all of the messianic prophecies were not fulfilled through him or during his tenure. Judaism doesn't have a notion of a succession of messiahs who will effect the messianic age. This is to say nothing of the issue of the prime minister's (current or past) personal qualifications towards being the messiah.
Not quite, but maybe.
First, some corrections. The exile is by no means a function of lost spirituality. Imagine if all Jews lived in Israel, but they were always sinning and otherwise "lost" in spirituality - would you actually say that they are in exile, despite all living in Israel? Indeed, this was the condition of the Jews throughout much of Biblical/Prophetic history, before the first or second exile. Would you say that they were in exile, before an exile had occurred? Granted, it was sin that led them to become exiled, but exile itself is the condition of being forced out or otherwise incapable of living in one's homeland - and has nothing to do with spirituality.
Secondly, although only about 50% of Jews currently live in Israel, basically 100% could easily live in Israel if they wanted to. The political and even financial barriers that were up for almost 2000 years are now down, in the way that our ancestors literally prayed for. Today, when we pray for ingathering of the exiles, God probably laughs - He's done all He needs to, its time we just bought a plane ticket.
Also, 100% residence should never be our standard for saying the exile is over - what, we can't have any expats, or people living away for school/business? So, I'm not saying that the exile is officially over, but one can make a very easy argument that it is.
Next: What's wrong with a state being a "modern political entity"? (Isn't that, by definition, what any state would be today - even a theocratic one?) If the claim is that the Messiah couldn't have come if Israel is still a democracy which respects human rights and personal liberties . . . is that the kind of Messiah you are waiting for? The halakhot as to what a Messianic state should look like are, by their nature, undeveloped and not settled. And mind you, Tanakh is extremely explicit in its skepticism of kings and monarchies. So, yes, I think we could easily have a Messianic state that functions like a liberal democracy.
That said, I don't think Prime Ministers (or the first) can count as the Messiah. We are missing a number of critical components in the Messianic vision. First - and most important - Jews must live in peace, a condition that the State of Israel has yet to attain. Second, there must be at least some consummation of the hope of a Third Temple being built. (I prefer more liberal versions of this, that don't envision an actual re-hashing of animal smoke offerings. But still, that hope most be consummated in some sense.) Third, there must be some kind of "new recognition" of the moral teachings of God/Israel, in a way that allows for a more moral, peaceful, fruitful world order.
None of these three things have yet to be reached.
There are many who believe that the State of Israel is the "beginning of the sprouting of the redemption [ie, the very beginning of the Messianic era]," and there are those who believe that the State is a sign that we're much further along in the process. At the very least one could make a strong argument that the "Exile" is over, even if the Messianic era itself has not arrived.
Reason to believe that the State is a sign of the Messianic era, if not the era itself, is based on the following sources:
Talmud, Berakhot 34b
Rambam, Laws of Repentance, 9:2
R. Tzadok ha-Kohen, “Divrei Soferim”
R. Yisrael Yehoshua of Kutna, “Yeshu'ot Malko”
Jews have been gathered from the four corners of the Earth to the Land of Israel; they possess the land (are sovereign over it); and are currently more prosperous and numerous there than they have been in thousands of years. Thus it would appear that this criteria have been fulfilled.
More information can be found at: