Some Chabad chassidim believe the late Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, was and is the Moshiach. (This is a subject that has been addressed already on this SE.)

My question is, a prerequisite for the Moshiach is that he must be a descendant of Dovid HaMelech. If the Lubavitcher Rebbe was not a descendant of him, then that would cut down any further argument for Chabad Messianism.

So, was Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, the Lubavitcher Rebbe, a descendant of Dovid HaMelech?

Edit: The Moshiach must be a descendant of Dovid HaMelech paternally (ie, running through the father). Thus, I want sources proving or disproving the Rebbe's connection with King David through his father.

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    I'm not sure if this is on topic
    – Double AA
    Feb 15 '17 at 12:44
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    The question you are really asking is if the Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson has inheritance rights through his paternal line to the house of King David. Most people don't follow the details of this clearly and say the Rebbe is descended via the Alter Rebbe to the Maharal of Prague. The Rebbe's paternal line is via the Tzemach Tzedek whose father was Rabbi Shalom Shachna Altschuler, son of Rabbi Noach Altschuler. Shalom Shachne was married to Devorah Leah, the Alter Rebbe's 2nd daughter. The question is about the yichus of Rabbi Noach Altschuler. Feb 15 '17 at 14:26
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    @YaacovDeane The Maharal's yichus to Dovid HaMelech is also kind of unclear Feb 15 '17 at 16:26
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    @YaacovDeane a descendent of Rashi Rashi had sons? Feb 15 '17 at 17:47
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    While everyone here is mumbling about Ashkenazim, the stronger Davidic traditions are out in the Syrian community. related judaism.stackexchange.com/q/47696/759
    – Double AA
    Feb 15 '17 at 18:41

Here is an answer I received for this question. There isn't anything that proves 100% that the Lubavitcher Rebbe's lineage can be traced back to Dovid Hamelech as I would think it is doubtful anyone today could trace their lineage back that far, but here is the reasoning behind this claim which was not as I thought through the Maharal...

There is speculation that the Tzemach Tzedek's father, Reb Shalom Shachna, was a direct descendant of the Metzudas Dovid, who in turn was a direct descendant of Dovid Hamelech. This isn't 100% proven, but that's the closest it gets.

All the best,

Rabbi Eliezer Zalmanov for Chabad.org


There are many reasons to believe that the father of the Tzemach Tzedek, Reb Shalom Shachna, was a direct descendant of Dovid HaMelech.

As a proof for this i will just quote what the The Rebbe Rashab, also a direct descendant of the Tzemach Tzedek, says clearly (Toras Shalom pg. 176): At a farbrengen on Motzaei Shabbos, 21 Kislev 5673, “‘His candle will never be extinguished;’ the light of the Baal Shem Tov will constantly illuminate. Chassidus will, without a doubt, exist until the coming of Moshiach, for ‘Dovid Melech Yisroel chai v’kayam’ – this was the Baal Shem Tov and the Maggid and the Rebbe, and so on, for we are of the seed of Dovid and we will continue until Moshiach. The Rebbe will take us all out.”

Now by the way what you said in your question isnt true as there are many proofs that to be Moshiach, one does not actually have to be a direct descendant – son after son – from Dovid HaMelech, and one who is a matrilineal descendant of Dovid HaMelech can also qualify to be Moshiach. One proof is from רבינו הקדוש. We all know that the Gemara (Sanhedrin 98b) says, “Says Rav: If Moshiach is among the living, he is, for example, Rabbeinu HaKadosh.” This is despite the fact that Tosafos (Sanhedrin 5a) brings down that Rabbeinu HaKadosh says that he is a descendant of the daughter of Dovid.

  • Regarding your last paragraph: why are we to assume Rav meant to say Rabbeinu Hakadosh was Moshiach mamish? He might have meant something completely different. It is a qualification of Moshiach that he be descended paternally from Dovid Hamelech, as this is how the line of Melochim is passed, and the Moshiach has to be a Melech from Beis Dovid.
    – ezra
    Aug 29 '19 at 17:58
  • Wasn't Rabbeinu HaKadosh part of the Hillel-Gamliel-Shimon line? Are you saying the whole line is descended from David only via his daughter? Even if they are descended from a daughter, they could also be descended from a son given that there are many generations. Also, I didn't see this in Tos on Sanhedrin 5a. Feb 14 '20 at 14:40

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