Sunday, August 07, 2016

"Failed Messiahs"

MESSIANISM: Six Failed Messiahs From Jewish History (Ari Feldman, The Forward).
Ever since Jesus came along in the first century of the common era, claiming to be the son of God and the messiah, there have been a lot of copycats. Messiah claimants have arisen in Judaism, Christianity and Islam, and have come from every corner of the world touched by the Abrahamic faiths. Sabbatai Zevi was arguably the most impactful instance of a failed messiah in the Jewish world since the 2nd century. But we’ve compiled a list of six other failed messiahs from Jewish history, from both the distant past — and the 90s.

As the writer notes, some of these "failed" messiahs still have followers who would dispute the "failed" label. Even Shabbetai Zvi, on whom more here (immediately preceding post) and links, is one of them.

There are many past PaleoJudaica posts on Bar Kokhba and the Bar Kokhba Revolt. A new book on the revolt was noted here. Other relevant past posts are collected here. And see the blog search engine for still more.

More on the Lubavitcher Rebbe, Menachem Mendel Schneerson, is here and links.

The other messiahs profiled in the article are Moses of Crete ("The Drowning Messiah"); "Sherini, Sheria, Serenus, Zonoria, Saüra, Severus," Yudghan (Al-Ra’i, "The Shepherd"), and David Alroi.