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The Closed-Womb Prophecy Part II Print E-mail
Written by Victoria Radin   

Part I explained the fulfillment of the prophecy during the time it was originally presented. In this ‘near fulfillment’, the Hebrew word “almah” referred to the young woman who became the wife of a priest, Hilkiah, a man who was eventually appointed High Priest of Israel. He named his son Eliakim, meaning “raised by G-d”. This alluded, right from his birth, to the Messiah Yeshua’s life. In fact, many of the events and circumstances of Eliakim’s life demonstrated that he was a ‘type’ of the Messiah, Immanuel.

 [1]Author Risto Santala addresses the historical criticisms of the word ‘almah’ being translated virgin’:

“The word almah used by Isaiah does unquestionably also mean 'a young woman'. Isaac's bride Rebecca was an almah (Gen. 24:43), but she was also a betulah, 'a virgin; no man had ever lain with her' (v. 16). Almah is never used of any young women who were married or who had had sexual relations with men (whores, etc.).”

In the Zohar[2] it is revealed that in the text of this prophecy (Isaiah 9:7), the scribe of Isaiah used a closed ‘m’ in the middle of a word in this passage. Grammatically, the Hebrew letter ‘m’ is open at the top except when it appears at the end of a word where there, it appears closed. “The Zohar decides that the closed “m” in this passage refers to the fact that the Messiah will be born from a closed womb.” Therefore, the actual ‘almah’ of Isaiah 7:14 and her son had to be a ‘type’ of the messiah to come.

Santala points to Isaiah 53:2 which a rabbi saw as “a cryptic hint of the Messiah’s miraculous birth, in that he will be born, as it were from ground ‘which has not been ploughed and in which no seed has been planted.’”[3]

“He grew up before him like a TENDER SHOOT, and like a root out of dry ground.” (Isaiah 53:2)

 This prophecy could not have been completely fulfilled in the birth of Eliakim or in G-d’s rescue of Jerusalem and Judah during Ahaz’s day because the prophecy goes on to describe this son, Immanuel, as “a sanctuary, a stone of stumbling & a rock of offense to both houses of Israel” (Isaiah 8:14, 15). It was obviously speaking of a “son” and a “day” in the future. In fact, the New Testament opens with the words describing this first fulfillment of prophecy from the Old Testament:

“Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,” which is translated, “G-d with us.” (Matthew 1:23)

 The “sign” of the virgin giving birth to a Son, Immanuel, had its literal fulfillment in the birth of the Messiah, Yeshua from the ‘closed womb’ of the virgin Miriam (Mary). When His parents brought Yeshua to the temple for circumcision, Simeon blessed them, and said to Miriam, His mother:

“Behold, this Child is destined for the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign which will be spoken against." Luke 2:33-35

And further, the apostle Peter identifies Yeshua as the “…stone of stumbling and a rock of offense” (1 Peter 2:8) that is spoken of in Isaiah 8:14, and 15 as part of this prophecy. It was THIS Immanuel who was physically “G-d with us” who delivered all who would believe on Him from eternal death:

“And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. For G-d so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” (John 3:14-16)

But even in this second fulfillment of the “Closed Womb Prophecy”, the prophecy is not exhausted. The original circumstances in Ahaz’s day did not allow for the complete fulfillment. The Immanuel of Isaiah 7:14, fulfilled in Matthew 1:23 did not complete the Immanuel of Isaiah 8:8 and 9:7 which will be fulfilled in the future according to Luke 1: 32, 33.

“And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty G-d, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon His kingdom, to order it and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever.” (Isaiah 9:7).

 “He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the L-rd G-d will give Him the throne of His father David; and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever; and His kingdom will have no end.” (Luke 1:32, 33)

 Therefore, this prophecy also pertains to the return of the Messiah and His Millennial reign on earth, leading to Part III, wherein this prophecy is exhausted in its predicted outcome for the nation of Israel and the world.

 



[1] Santala, Risto. The Messiah in the Old Testament. Jerusalem: Keren Ahvah Meshihit, 1992, p. 195

[2] Ibid. p. 194; Revealed more than 2000 years ago, the Zohar is a spiritual text that explains the secrets of the Bible, the Universe and every aspect of life.

[3] Santala Risto. The Messiah in the Old Testament. Jerusalem: Keren Ahvah Meshihit, 1992, p. 197

 

 
 
 
 
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