Prophesy about Jesus

Hi everybody

I have a question that’s been puzzling me for a while and I hope someone would give me some light on this issue.

At the end of the second chapter of the Gospel of Matthew, there’s a brief narration about the return of Joseph, Mary and the baby Jesus from Egypt to Nazareth. The very last verse of the chapter (Mt. 2:23) reads:

“and he went and lived in a town called Nazareth. So was fulfilled what was said through the prophets, that he would be called a Nazarene.”

But there is no such prophesy (at least I haven’t found it) in the OT. If there is, would somebody tell me the passage, please. And if there is not, my question is Why would the evangelist record it? I would really appreciate an answer here. Thank you.

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Hi @moiguev I have taken the following two possible explanations from the CARM website which I will reference to below. There is more detail on the site.

First, Matthew does not say ‘prophet,’ singular. He says ‘prophets,’ plural. It could be that Matthew was referring to several Old Testament references to the despised character of Jesus (i.e., Psalm 22:6, 13; 69:10; Isaiah 49:7; 53:3; Micah 5:1). Nazareth held the Roman garrison for the northern areas of Galilee. Therefore, the Jews would have little to do with this place and largely despised it. Perhaps this is why it says in John 1:46, “And Nathanael said to him, ‘Can any good thing come out of Nazareth?’ Philip said to him, ‘Come and see.’” So, it could be a reference not to an actual location, but the maligned character of the Messiah even as Nazareth was maligned for housing the Roman garrison, and Matthew was using it in reference to the implied hatred of Christ.

Second, there could be a play on words that Matthew was referring to. In Isaiah 11:1 it says, “Then a shoot will spring from the stem of Jesse, and a branch from his roots will bear fruit.” In Hebrew, the word for “branch” is netzer, “NZR” which letters are included in NaZaReth. It seems that Matthew was referring to the branch, the Nazarene, in turn a reference to God’s raising up of the Messiah. Clearly, Matthew was not exegeting Isaiah, but it seems he was referring to the Branch.

I hope this helps :handshake:

Reference:
https://carm.org/did-ot-prophesy-jesus-coming-nazareth

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Hi!

So, this is a tough one I think you have to know very well Hebrew for this. I am not a specialist but I was looking into some study bibles that I have and I found that it seems that Mathew was referring to verses like Isaiah 4:2 and 11:1.

Matthew resorted to the prophecies of the renewal, since the Hebrew consonants “nzr”(which form the word"renewal") also make up the words “Nazareth” and Nazarene ", Mathew was using king of an indirect reference to this prophesies.

I hope this helps!

God Bless!

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Thanks for your answer @brianlalor, very informative and it’s a great link, I wasn’t aware of that website.

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@juansebravo95 Thanks a lot!