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Rashi on Daniel 12:11 seems to represent a timeline for the approach of the Moshiach (though I admit, I don't really understand it): [translation via chabad.org]

And from the time the daily sacrifice was removed: in order to place a silent abomination in its stead, are days of one thousand two hundred and ninety years since the daily sacrifice was removed until it will be restored in the days of our King Messiah, and this calculation coincides with the calculation of (8:14): “evening and morning, two thousand and three hundred” from the day of their exile to Egypt until the final redemption: Egyptian exile 210; From their Exodus until the First Temple 480; First Temple 410; Babylonian exile 70; Second Temple 420; Totaling 1590. The daily sacrifice was removed six years before the destruction, which equals 1584. Add 1290, and the total sum is 2874; like the numerical value of בֹּקֶר עֶרֶב [574] plus 2300 [2874].

In the next verse, Rashi comments,

Fortunate is he who waits etc.: Forty five years are added to the above number, for our King Messiah is destined to be hidden after he is revealed and to be revealed again. So we find in Midrash Ruth, and so did Rabbi Eleazar HaKalir establish (in the concluding poem of the morning service of the portion dealing with the month of Nissan): “and he will be concealed from them six weeks of years.”

I haven't found a citation in the midrash to Ruth, nor have I looked up Yotzer Parshat Hachodesh, but I am trying to understand the idea that the Moshiach will be revealed and then hidden and revealed (for 45 years? For 42 years?). Can anyone point me to discussions of this?

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This is the traditional teaching from the time of the Rishonim of how the final redemption will unfold. It appears in many different places such as Midrash Talpiot starting at the 7th sign of the redemption.

Machzor Vitry which was composed by Rabbeinu Simcha, one of the students of Rashi and proofed and corrected by Rabbeinu Shemaya, the grandson of Rashi.

And Sefer Avkat Rochel by Rabbeinu Makir.

It is also discussed in Sefer Ohr HaChama, vol. 2, parshat Shemot page 7b.

The time period that you are referring to, derived from Daniel 12:11, is after the death or murder of Moshiach ben Yosef. It is classically considered to be a time of refinement and 'testing the faith' of the Jewish people like is discussed by Saadia Gaon in Emunot v'Deot, Ma'amar 8, Chapter 5 and also by Rabbi Meir Aldabi in Sefer Shevilei Emunah, Nativ 10, Chapter 1. They see the one who was believed to be Moshiach die and become disheartened as a result. Some lose their faith. Some don't. It is to a large degree dependent on their eating "salted foods". That means that they continue to learn faithfully the Torah that has been preserved for the Jewish people up until that time.

At the end of this time period the beginning of the period of resurrection starts. This time period begins with the resurrection of the 7 Shepherds and 8 anointed individuals listed in Sukkah 52b.

  • It should be noted that Midrash Talpiyot is a Sabbatean work. – mevaqesh May 8 '16 at 16:34
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    See for example this link. – mevaqesh May 8 '16 at 16:41
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    Interesting article. It doesn't say what you claim. It only gives the back and forth of whether or not the author was exposed to, or influenced by, or was a Shabbtean. Then Gershom Sholom gives his opinion. For an alternate opinion, see Shem HaGadolim by the Chida on Rabbi Eliyahu HaKohen. – Yaacov Deane May 8 '16 at 17:56
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    You list various works, then make various claims. What is the relationship between these works and your claims? Do all the works support all of your claims? Do they agree with each other? Consider clarifying, as this is essential to the OP's question. – mevaqesh Oct 2 '16 at 3:48
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    It is classically considered by whom? to be a time of refinement and 'testing the faith' of the Jewish people. – mevaqesh Nov 1 '16 at 15:17

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