according to traditional Jewish sources, will be a human being born of a flesh and blood mother and father,1 unlike
the Christian idea that has him as the son of God conceived immaculately. In fact, Maimonides writes that the Messiah will
complete his job and then die like everyone else.2
his job? To end the agony of history and usher in a new era of bliss for humanity at large.3 The time period in
which he emerges and completes his task is called the Messianic Era. According to one Talmudic opinion it's not an era of
overt miracles, where the rules of nature are overturned. Rather the only new element introduced to the world will be peace
among the nations, with the Jewish people living in their land under their own sovereignty, unencumbered by persecution and
anti-Semitism, free to pursue their spiritual goals like never before.4
1. Maimonides, Melachim
2. Commentary to the Mishnah, Sanhedrin 10:1; cf. Sanhedrin 99a.
3. Maimonides, Melachim 11:3; 12:5
4. Sanhedrin 91b, 99a; Berachos 34b; Pesachim 68a; Shabbos
63a; cf. Maimonides, Teshuva 9:2, Melachim 12:2.