Messianic Prophecies Fulfilled by Jesus Christ
By Britt Gillette
The Old Testament contains numerous prophecies written over 2,500 years ago. Every one of these prophecies was fulfilled in the life of Jesus of Nazareth approximately 2,000 years ago. Even more prophecies concerning the Second Coming of the messiah remained unfulfilled, but the promise of Jesus is that they will be fulfilled in this generation.
Below is a list of messianic Old Testament prophecies I’ve managed to compile. I will attempt to make this list as exhaustive as possible, so if you notice a missing prophecy, please email me, and I’ll do my best to make this list an authoritative source on the subject.
1. The Messiah will be born in Bethlehem.
Old Testament Prophecy: “But you, O Bethlehem Ephrathah, are only a small village in Judah. Yet a ruler of Israel will come from you, one whose origins are from the distant past.” Micah 5:2
New Testament Fulfillment: “Jesus was born in the town of Bethlehem in Judea, during the reign of King Herod.” Matthew 2:1
2. The Messiah will be a descendant of Judah.
Old Testament Prophecy: “The scepter will not depart from Judah, nor the ruler’s staff from his descendants, until the coming of the one to whom it belongs, the one whom all nations will obey.” Genesis 49:10
New Testament Fulfillment: Luke 3:23-38 and Matthew 1:1-17 confirm that Jesus is a descendant of Judah.
3. Great kings will pay homage and tribute to the Messiah.
Old Testament Prophecy: “The western kings of Tarshish and the islands will bring him tribute. The eastern kings of Sheba and Seba will bring him gifts.” Psalm 72:10-11
New Testament Fulfillment: “About that time, some wise men from eastern lands arrived in Jerusalem, asking, ‘Where is the newborn king of the Jews? We have seen his as it arose, and we have come to worship him.” Matthew 2:1-2
“They entered the house where the child and his mother, Mary, were, and they fell down before him and worshiped him.” Matthew 2:11
4. The Messiah will be a descendant of David.
Old Testament Prophecies: “The Lord swore to David a promise he will never take back: ‘I will place one of your descendants on your throne. If your descendants obey the terms of my covenant and follow the decrees that I teach them, then your royal line will never end.” Psalm 132:11
“‘For the time is coming,’ says the Lord, ‘when I will place a righteous Branch on King David’s throne. He will be a King who rules with wisdom. He will do what is just and right through the land.” Jeremiah 23:5-6
“At that time I will bring to the throne of David a righteous descendant, and he will do what is just and right throughout the land.” Jeremiah 33:15
New Testament Fulfillment: “He will be very great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David. And he will reign over Israel forever; his Kingdom will never end!” Luke 1:32-33
5. The Messiah will be born of a virgin.
Old Testament Prophecy: “All right then, the Lord himself will choose the sign. Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son and will call him Immanuel – ‘God is with us.'” Isaiah 7:14
New Testament Fulfillment: “But while she was still a virgin, she became pregnant by the Holy Spirit. Joseph, her fiancï¿½, being a just man, decided to break the engagement quietly, so as not to disgrace her publicly. As he considered this, he fell asleep, and an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream. ‘Joseph, son of David,’ the angel said, ‘do not be afraid to go ahead with your marriage to Mary. For the child within her has been conceived by the Holy Spirit. And she will have a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.'” Matthew 1:18-21
6. Children will be killed in effort to kill the Messiah.
Old Testament Prophecy: “This is what the Lord says: ‘A cry of anguish is heard in Ramah – mourning and weeping unrestrained. Rachel weeps for her children, refusing to be comforted – for her children are dead.” Jeremiah 31:15
New Testament Fulfillment: “Herod was furious when he learned that the wise men had outwitted him. He sent soldiers to kill al the boys in and around Bethlehem who were two years old and under, because the wise men had him the star first appeared to them about two years earlier. Herod’s brutal action fulfilled the prophecy of Jeremiah.” Matthew 2:16-17
7. The Messiah will be taken to Egypt.
Old Testament Prophecy: “When Israel was a child, I loved him as a son, and I called my son out of Egypt.” Hosea 11:1
New Testament Fulfillment: “That night Joseph left for Egypt with the child and Mary, his mother, and they stayed there until Herod’s death. This fulfilled what the Lord had spoken through the prophet: ‘I called my Son out of Egypt.'” Matthew 2:14-15
8. The Messiah will be the Son of God.
Old Testament Prophecy: “The king proclaims the Lord’s decree: ‘The Lord said to me, ‘You are my son. Today, I have become your Father. Only ask, and I will give you the nations as your inheritance, the ends of the earth as your possession.” Psalm 2:7-8
New Testament Fulfillment: “And a voice from heaven said, ‘This is my beloved Son, and I am fully pleased with him.'” Matthew 3:17
9. The Messiah will be heralded by the messenger of the Lord.
Old Testament Prophecy: “Listen! I hear the voice of someone shouting, ‘Make a highway for the Lord through the wilderness. Make a straight, smooth road through the desert for our God. Fill the valleys and level the hills. Straighten out the curves and smooth off the rough spots. Then the glory of the Lord will be revealed, and all the people will see it together. The Lord has spoken!” Isaiah 40:3-5
New Testament Fulfillment: “In those days John the Baptist began preaching in the Judean wilderness. His message was, ‘Turn from your sins and turn to God, because the Kingdom of Heaven is near.’ Isaiah had spoken of John when he said, ‘He is a voice shouting in the wilderness: ‘Prepare a pathway for the Lord’s coming! Make a straight road for him!'” Matthew 3:1-3
10. The Messiah will be anointed by the Holy Spirit.
Old Testament Prophecy: “And the Spirit of the Lord will rest on him – the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and fear of the Lord.” Isaiah 11:2
New Testament Fulfillment: “After his baptism, as Jesus came up out of the water, the heavens were opened and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and settling on him. And a voice from heaven said, ‘This is my beloved Son, and I am fully pleased with him.'” Matthew 3:16-17
11. The Messiah will bring light to Galilee.
Old Testament Prophecy: “Nevertheless, that time of darkness and despair will not go on forever. The land of Zebulun and Naphtali will soon be humbled, but there will be a time in the future when Galilee of the Gentiless, which lies along the road that runs between the Jordan and the sea, will be filled with glory. The people who walk in darkness will see a great light – a light that will shine on all who live in the land where death casts its shadow.” Isaiah 9:1-2
New Testament Fulfillment: “When Jesus heard that John had been arrested, he left Judea and returned to Galilee. But instead of going to Nazareth, he went to Capernaum, beside the Sea of Galilee, in the region of Zebulun and Naphtali.” Matthew 4:12-16
12. The Messiah will preach good news to the poor, comfort the broken hearted, and announce the year of the Lord’s favor.
Old Testament Prophecy: “The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is upon me, because the Lord has appointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to comfort the brokenhearted and to announce that captives will be released and prisoners will be freed. He has sent me to tell those who mourn that the time of the Lord’s favor has come.” Isaiah 61:1-2
New Testament Fulfillment: “When he came to the village of Nazareth, his boyhood home, he went as usual to the synagogue on the Sabbath and stood up to read the Scriptures. The scroll containing the messages of Isaiah the prophet was handed to him, and he unrolled the scroll to the place where it says: ‘The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, for he has appointed me to preach Good News to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see, that the downtrodden will be freed from their oppressors, and that the time of the Lord’s favor has come.’ He rolled up the scroll, handed it back to the attendant, and sat down. Everyone in the synagogue stared at him intently. Then he said, ‘This Scripture has come true today before your very eyes!'” Luke 4:16-21
13. The Messiah will be hated without cause.
Old Testament Prophecy: “Don’t let my treacherous enemies rejoice over my defeat. Don’t let those who hate me without cause gloat over my sorrow.” Psalm 35:19
New Testament Fulfillment: “Anyone who hates me hates my Father, too. If I hadn’t done such miraculous signs among them that no one else could do, they would not be counted guilty. But as it is, they saw all that I did and yet hated both of us – me and my Father.” John 15:23-25
14. The Messiah will make the blind see, the deaf hear, the lame walk, and the mute speak.
Old Testament Prophecy: “And when he comes, he will open the eyes of the blind and unstop the ears of the deaf. The lame will leap like a deer, and those who cannot speak will shout and sing!” Isaiah 35:5-6
New Testament Fulfillment: “John the Baptist, who was now in prison, heard about all the things the Messiah was doing. So he sent his disciples to ask Jesus, ‘Are you really the Messiah we’ve been waiting for, or should we keep looking for someone else?’ Jesus told them, ‘Go back to John and tell him about what you have heard and seen – the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cured, the deaf hear, the dead are raised to life, and the Good News is being preached to the poor. And tell him: ‘God blesses those who are not offended by me.”” Matthew 11:2-6
15. The Messiah will enter Jerusalem riding a donkey.
Old Testament Prophecy: “Rejoice greatly, O people of Zion! Shout in triumph, O people of Jerusalem! Look, your king is coming to you. He is righteous and victorious, yet he is humble, riding on a donkey – even on a donkey’s colt.” Zechariah 9:9
New Testament Fulfillment: “Jesus sent two of them on ahead. ‘Go into the village over there,’ he said, ‘and you will see a donkey tied there, with its colt beside it. Untie them and bring them here. If anyone asks what you are doing, just say, ‘The Lord need them,’ and he will immediately them.'” Matthew 21:1-4
“The two disciples did as Jesus said. They brought the animals to him and threw their garments over the colt, and he sat on it. Most of the crowd spread their coats on the road ahead of Jesus, and other cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. He was in the center of the procession, and the crowds all around him were shouting, ‘Praise God for the Son of David! Bless the one who comes in the name of the Lord! Praise God in the highest heaven!’ The entire city of Jerusalem was stirred as he entered. ‘Who is this?’ they asked. And the crowds replied, ‘It’s Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee.'” Matthew 21:6-11
16. The Messiah will arrive in Jerusalem at a specified time.
Old Testament Prophecy: “Now listen and understand! Seven sets of seven plus sixty-two sets of seven will pass from the time the command is given to rebuild Jerusalem until the Anointed One comes.” Daniel 9:25
New Testament Fulfillment: “But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law.” Galatians 4:4
17. The Messiah will enter the Temple with authority.
Old Testament Prophecy: “‘Look! I am sending my messenger, and he will prepare the way before me. Then the Lord you are seeking will suddenly come to his Temple. The messenger of the covenant, whom you look for so eagerly, is surely coming,’ says the Lord Almighty.” Malachi 3:1
New Testament Fulfillment: “Jesus entered the Temple and began to drive out the merchants and their customers. He knocked over the tables of the money changers and the stalls of those selling doves. He said, ‘The Scriptures declare, ‘My Temple will be called a place of prayer,’ but you have turned it into a den of thieves!'” Matthew 21:12-13
18. The Messiah will be rejected.
Old Testament Prophecy: “He was despised and rejected – a man of sorrows, acquainted with bitterest grief. We turned our backs on him and looked the other way when he went by. He was despised, and we did not care.” Isaiah 53:3
New Testament Fulfillment: “And Pilate said to the people, ‘Here is your king!’ ‘Away with him,’ they yelled. ‘Away with him – crucify him!’ ‘What? Crucify your king?’ Pilate asked. ‘We have no king but Caesar,’ the leading priests shouted back.” John 19:14-15
19. The Messiah will be silent in front of his accusers.
Old Testament Prophecy: “He was oppressed and treated harshly, yet he never said a word. He was led as a lamb to the slaughter. And as a sheep is silent before the shearers, he did not open his mouth.” Isaiah 53:7
New Testament Fulfillment: “Then the high priest stood up and said to Jesus, ‘Well, aren’t you going to answer these charges? What do you have to say for yourself?’ But Jesus remained silent.” Matthew 26:62-63
20. The Messiah will be rejected by the Jews.
Old Testament Prophecy: “The stone rejected by the builders has now become the cornerstone. This is the Lord’s doing, and it is marvelous to see.” Pslam 118:22
New Testament Fulfillment: “Yes, he is very precious to you who believe. But for those who reject him, ‘The stone that was rejected by the builders has now become the cornerstone.'” 1 Peter 2:7
21. The Messiah will be betrayed by a friend.
Old Testament Prophecy: “Even my best friend, the one I trusted completely, the one who shared my food, has turned against me.” Psalm 41:9
New Testament Fulfillment: “The Scriptures declare, ‘The one who shares my food has turned against me,’ and this will soon come true. I tell you this now, so that when it happens you will believe I am the Messiah.” John 13:18-19
“Jesus said, ‘It is the one to whom I give the bread dipped in the sauce.’ And when he had dipped it, he gave it to Judas, son of Simon Iscariot. As soon as Judas had eaten the bread, Satan entered into him.” John 13:26-27
22. The Messiah will be betrayed for 30 pieces of silver.
Old Testament Prophecy: “And I said to them, ‘If you like, give me my wages, whatever I am worth; but only if you want to.’ So they counted out for my wages thirty pieces of silver.” Zechariah 11:12
New Testament Fulfillment: “Then Judas Iscariot, one of the twelve disciples, went to the leading priests and asked, ‘How much will you pay me to betray Jesus to you?’ And they gave him thirty pieces of silver.” Matthew 26:14-15
23. The 30 pieces of silver will be thrown in the potter’s field.
Old Testament Prophecy: “And the Lord said to me, ‘Throw it to the potters’ – this magnificent sum at which they valued me! So I took the thirty coins and threw them to the potters in the Temple of the Lord.” Zechariah 11:13
New Testament Fulfillment: “When Judas, who had betrayed him, realized that Jesus had been condemned to die, he was filled with remorse. So he took the thirty pieces of silver back to the leading priests and other leaders. ‘I have sinned,’ he declared, ‘for I have betrayed an innocent man.’ ‘What do we care?’ they retorted. ‘That’s your problem.’ Then Judas threw the money onto the floor of the Temple and went out and hanged himself. The leading priests picked up the money. ‘We can’t put it in the Temple treasury,’ they said, ‘since it’s against the law to accept money paid for murder.’ After some discussion they finally decided to buy the potter’s field, and they made it into a cemetery for foreigners. That is why the field is still called the Field of Blood.” Matthew 27:3-8
24. The Messiah will be accused by false witnesses.
Old Testament Prophecy: “Malicious witnesses testify against me. They accuse me of things I don’t even know about.” Psalm 35:11
New Testament Fulfillment: “Many false witnesses spoke against him, but they contradicted each other.” Mark 14:56
25. The Messiah will be beaten, mocked, and spit upon.
Old Testament Prophecy: “I give my back to those who beat me and my cheeks to those who pull out my beard. I do not hide from shame, for they mock me and spit in my face.” Isaiah 50:6
New Testament Fulfillment: “Then they spit in Jesus’ face and hit him with their fists. And some slapped him, saying, ‘Prophesy to us, you Messiah! Who hit you that time?'” Matthew 26:67
26. The Messiah will be beaten, bloodied, and disfigured.
Old Testament Prophecy: “See, my servant will prosper; he will be highly exalted. Many were amazed when they saw him – beaten and bloodied, so disfigured one would scarcely know he was a person.” Isaiah 52:13-14
New Testament Fulfillment: “Then Pilate had Jesus flogged with a lead-tipped whip. The soldiers made a crown of long, sharp thorns and put it on his head, and they put a royal purple robe on him. ‘Hail! King of the Jews!’ they mocked, and they hit him with their fists.” John 19:1-3
27. The Messiah will be mocked and told to save himself.
Old Testament Prophecy: “Everyone who sees me mocks me. They sneer and shake their heads, saying, ‘Is this the one who relies on the Lord? Then let the Lord save him! If the Lord loves him so much, let the Lord rescue him!'” Psalm 22:7-8
New Testament Fulfillment: “The leading priests, the teachers of religious law, and the other leaders also mocked Jesus. ‘He saved others,’ they scoffed, ‘but he can’t save himself! So he is the king of Israel, is he? Let him come down from the cross, and we will believe in him! He trusted God – let God show his approval by delivering him! For he said, ‘I am the Son of God.’ And the criminals who were crucified with him also shouted the same insults at him.” Matthew 27:41-44
28. The Messiah’s enemies will pierce his hands and feet.
Old Testament Prophecy: “My enemies surround me like a pack of dogs; an evil gang closes in on me. They have pierced my hands and feet.” Psalm 22:16
New Testament Fulfillment: “Carrying the cross by himself, Jesus went to the place called Skull Hill (in Hebrew, Golgotha). There they crucified him.” John 19:17-18
29. The Messiah will be given vinegar and gall to drink.
Old Testament Prophecy: “But instead, they give me poison for food; they offer me sour wine to satisfy my thirst.” Psalm 69:21
New Testament Fulfillment: “They offered him wine drugged with myrrh, but he refused it.” Mark 15:23
30. The Messiah’s enemies will divide his clothes among themselves and cast dice for his garments.
Old Testament Prophecy: “My enemies stare at me and gloat. They divide my clothes among themselves and throw dice for my garments.” Psalm 22:17-18
New Testament Fulfillment: “When the soldiers had crucified Jesus, they divided his clothes among the four of them. They also took his robe, but it was seamless, woven in one piece from the top. So they said, ‘Let’s not tear it but throw dice to see who gets it.'” John 19:23-24
31. The Messiah’s bones will not be broken.
Old Testament Prophecy: “The righteous face many troubles, but the Lord rescues them from each and every one. For the Lord protects them from harm – not one of their bones will be broken!” Psalm 34:19-20
New Testament Fulfillment: “The Jewish leaders didn’t want the victims hanging there the next day, which was the Sabbath (and a very special Sabbath at that, because it was the Passover), so they asked Pilate to hasten their deaths by ordering that their legs be broken. Then their bodies could be taken down. So the soldiers came and broke the legs of the two men crucified with Jesus. But when they came to Jesus, they saw that he was dead already, so they didn’t break his legs.” John 19:31-33
32. The Messiah’s life will be poured out like water.
Old Testament Prophecy: “My life is poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint. My heart is like wax, melting within me.” Psalm 22:14
New Testament Fulfillment: “One of the soldiers, however, pierced his side with a spear, and blood and water flowed out.” John 19:34
33. The Messiah will be struck down, and his disciples will be scattered.
Old Testament Prophecy: “Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, the man who is my partner, says the Lord Almighty. Strike down the shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered, and I will turn against the lambs.” Zechariah 13:7
New Testament Fulfillment: “‘Tonight, all of you will desert me,’ Jesus told them.” Matthew 26:31
“At that point, all the disciples deserted him and fled.” Matthew 26:56
34. The Messiah will be buried in a rich man’s grave.
Old Testament Prophecy: “He had done no wrong, and he never deceived anyone. But he was buried like a criminal; he was put in a rich man’s grave.” Isaiah 53:9
New Testament Fulfillment: “Joseph took the body and wrapped it in a long linen cloth. He placed it in his own new tomb, which had been carved out of the rock. Then he rolled the great stone across the entrance as he left.” Matthew 27:59-60
35. The Messiah will be killed, appearing to have accomplished nothing.
Old Testament Prophecy: “After this period of sixty-two sets of seven, the Anointed One will be killed, appearing to have accomplished nothing, and a ruler will arise whose armies will destroy the city and the Temple.” Daniel 9:26
New Testament Fulfillment: “God publicly endorsed Jesus of Nazareth by doing wonderful miracles, wonders, and signs through him, as you well know. But you followed God’s prearranged plan. With the help of lawless Gentiles, you nailed him to the cross and murdered him. However, God released him from the horrors of death and raised him back to life again, for death could not keep him in its grip.” Acts 2:22-24
Historical Fulfillment: Titus and the Roman legions destroyed the city and the Temple in A.D. 70.
36. The Messiah will be raised from the dead (resurrected).
Old Testament Prophecies: “For you will not leave my soul among the dead or allow your godly one to rot in the grave.” Psalm 16:10
“But as for me, God will redeem my life. He will snatch me from the power of death.” Psalm 49:15
New Testament Fulfillment: “Then the angel spoke to the women. ‘Don’t be afraid!’ he said. ‘I know you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He isn’t here! He has been raised from the dead, just as he said would happen. Come, see where his body was lying. And now, go quickly and tell his disciples he has been raised from the dead, and he is going ahead of you to Galilee.'” Matthew 28:5-7
37. The Messiah will bear the sins of many and intercede for sinners.
Old Testament Prophecies: “Yet it was our weaknesses he carried; it was our sorrows that weighed him down. And we thought his troubles were a punishment from God for his own sins! But he was wounded and crushed for our sins. He was beaten that we might have peace. He was whipped, and we were healed! All of us have strayed away like sheep. We have left God’s paths to follow our own. Yet the Lord laid on him the guilt and sins of us all.” Isaiah 53:4-6
“From prison and trial they led him away to his death. But who among the people realized that he was dying for their sins – that he was suffering their punishment?” Isaiah 53:8
“But it was the Lord’s good plan to crush him and fill him with grief. Yet when his life is made an offering for sin, he will have a multitude of children, many heirs. He will enjoy a long life, and the Lord’s plan will prosper in his hands. When he sees all that is accomplished by his anguish, he will be satisfied. And because of what he has experienced, my righteous servant will make it possible for many to be counted righteous, for he will bear all their sins. I will give him the honors of one who is mighty and great, because he exposed himself to death. He was counted among those who were sinners. He bore the sins of many and interceded for sinners.” Isaiah 53:10-12
New Testament Fulfillment: “For all have sinned; all fall short of God’s glorious standard. Yet now God in his gracious kindness declares us not guilty. He has done this through Christ Jesus, who has freed us by taking away our sins. For God sent Jesus to take the punishment for our sins and to satisfy God’s anger against us. We are made right with God when we believe that Jesus shed his blood, sacrificing his life for us. God was being entirely fair and just when he did not punish those who sinned in former times. And he is entirely fair and just in this present time when he declares sinners to be right in his sight because they believe in Jesus.” Romans 3:23-26
38. The Messiah will ascend to heaven.
Old Testament Prophecy: “When you ascended to the heights, you led a crowd of captives.” Psalm 68:18
New Testament Fulfillment: “While he was blessing them, he left them and was taken up to heaven.” Luke 24:51
39. The Messiah will be served by future generations.
Old Testament Prophecy: “Future generations will also serve him. Our children will hear about the wonders of the Lord. His righteous acts will be told to those yet unborn. They will hear about everything he has done.” Psalm 22:30
New Testament Fulfillment: Every generation since the crucifixion of Christ has heard of his righteous acts and everything he has done. Today, consciously or unconsciously, the name of Jesus graces the lips of everyone on the face of the earth.
If each of these prophecies is given a 50/50 probability of occurring in the life of one individual, the odds of fulfilling all 39 prophecies above would be:
1 in 549,755,813,900
Given that approximately 6.5 billion people now inhabit the earth, it seems reasonable to believe that no more than 20 to 30 billion people have ever lived on earth. Yet Jesus is the only person whose life fulfills each and every one of the messianic prophecies. In addition, given that the odds of fulfilling some of these prophecies far exceed the 50/50 assumption, we can rest assured that, at the very least, the life of Jesus of Nazareth is one that is statistically significant and merits a deep examination by every individual on earth.