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Besides that the Messiah must be of Davidic lineage, must he also be the greatest torah scholar of the generation (of Davidic lineage)?

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Rambam in Melachim 11:7 says that he will be "הוגה בתורה ועוסק במצוות כדויד אביו", roughly one who learns Torah and does mitzvos like David his father, but does not seem to require him to be the greatest Torah scholar of the generation. In fact in Melachim 11:6 he mentions the fact that Rabbi Akiva thought that Bar Kochba was going to be the Messiah, when we don't have any record of Bar Kochba being the greatest Torah scholar of his generation, and presumably there were other great scholars of Davidic decent alive at the time, such as the descendants of the house of Hillel who served as the Nassi of the Sanhedrin.

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    rabbi akiva was not of davidic descent. i am asking among eligible, will he be the greatest scholar
    – ray
    Commented Apr 28, 2014 at 15:42
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    @ray Point well made. I have edited the answer accordingly
    – Jewels
    Commented Apr 28, 2014 at 16:08
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    could be bar kochba was the greatest scholar though. not much is known about him maybe because of his failure
    – ray
    Commented Apr 28, 2014 at 17:34
  • The mishnaic literature is replete with statements of contemporaries of Bar Kochba. Had he indeed been of their stature we should have statements attributed to him as well. Even if we assume that he was knowledgeable in torah, he surely wasn't a scholar of the level of other scholars of Davidic descent of the time, such as Rabban Gamliel, Rabban Simon ben Gamliel, Rav Yehudah Hanassi or Rav Elazar ben Azarya
    – Jewels
    Commented Apr 29, 2014 at 4:06
  • @ray the midrash records that bar kochba killed R' Elazar Hamoda'i. If hew truly was a great scholar, he never would have stooped to murder.
    – fartgeek
    Commented Mar 20, 2023 at 11:01
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Ben David does not literally mean descendant of David hamelekh. We have a record of failure of direct descendants of malkhut Yehudah. Ben David means like David and like Shlomo, but improved version who learned from their errors. But as a man, he has his own failings. HaShem is not looking for personal perfection, but for achievements to restore Torah to the World. This man will have a moment of realisation like that of the 'burning bush', and from that moment he will more clearly realise his role, destiny and duty. Nothing about him should be taken literally as RaMBaM does. RaMBaN's approach is more correct. People will not recognise him for who he is although he will likely try to approach them. Consider Moshe's return to Mitzrayim, and even the zakeinim abandoned him. It is proverbially 'lonely at the top'. He will not perform 'miracles' but what he will do will seem miraculous because it will disrupt past ways of thinking. The future king's sheer kedushah will bring change to the world and the long domination by Esav/Edom will slowly lose its grip on the World. 'Jews' even Torah observant 'Jews' will shun him because he will be telling them things they do not want to hear, despite beating their chests and screaming "mashiakh mashiakh". Rabbis will not listen and will commit avodot zarah despite being told. Rabbis will lie and steal and kill but profess to be 'Torah Jews'. He will fight the war of Gog v'MaGog alone just like David fought the plishti & Goliath. He will gather the tribes, resurrect the 'dead', offer korban parah adumah, and lead in building the 10th Altar (and the three minor altars) before building the Yhezkel Bet Hamikdash and his own palace. King of Yisrael will be a great warrior and will end wars to create enduring World Peace. Torah will be learned on a previously unimagined level an depth by billions, and prophecy will be as common as capacity to learn.

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  • This is an interesting description of your view of what Moshiach Ben David will be, but it does not cite any sources or answer the OP 's question Commented Jul 6, 2023 at 17:59
  • The sources are in the TaNa"Kh and the rest of Torah she b'al peh. If you find something you don't understand, post a comment.
    – TzGaBeR
    Commented Jul 6, 2023 at 18:02
  • I agree that including sources is a mitzvah but where the subject covered is of a general scope and does not include controversial statements, sources may be omitted. However, if you find something controversial, please contact me and I will provide the source to support that statement in particular.
    – TzGaBeR
    Commented Jul 6, 2023 at 18:09
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    Indeed that's where many of these ideas come from. On this particular website you have to cite your sources (Not just "The Rambam" but rather "Rambam Mishnah Torah Halachot Shabbat 3:5" as a totally random example) Commented Jul 6, 2023 at 18:15
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    "Ben David does not literally mean descendant of David hamelekh ... Ben David means like David and like Shlomo, but improved version who learned from their errors." Says who?
    – Tamir Evan
    Commented Jul 6, 2023 at 20:35

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