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What is the difference between The Messiah and The Deliverer?

Thanks so much for your question to us here at TruthBook.

The words "Messiah" and "deliverer" appear together in The Urantia Book over 30 times, but this one passage really is the answer to your question. Both terms are used interchangeably in certain passages, so I think it's safe to say that in the Jewish minds of the day, there was no particular distinction for them, but here we see the distinction:

122:4.2 In all these visitations nothing was said about the house of David. Nothing was ever intimated about Jesus' becoming a "deliverer of the Jews," not even that he was to be the long-expected Messiah. Jesus was not such a Messiah as the Jews had anticipated, but he was the world's deliverer. His mission was to all races and peoples, not to any one group.
The Messiah is a Jewish concept and one whose fulfillment is still in question by the Jews; Jesus reluctantly took on that role during his bestowal mission, although not to their liking. The Messiah was to deliver the Jewish peoples (and only the Jewish peoples) from their age-long oppressions. You may recall that, even though he did not really intend to embody that concept, he did finally stop refusing it because his apostles and others were so determined to fit him into that role.

Neither the deliverer or the Messiah were thought to be divine beings by the Jews, but after Peter's confession of Jesus' divinity, Jesus tried to fit this new understanding of his combined divine/human nature into these concepts for his apostles' understanding, but the fact remains that he was NOT the Messiah as they expected.

157:5.3 For three years Jesus had been proclaiming that he was the "Son of Man," while for these same three years the apostles had been increasingly insistent that he was the expected Jewish Messiah. He now disclosed that he was the Son of God, and upon the concept of the combined nature of the Son of Man and the Son of God, he determined to build the kingdom of heaven. He had decided to refrain from further efforts to convince them that he was not the Messiah. He now proposed boldly to reveal to them what he is, and then to ignore their determination to persist in regarding him as the Messiah.

And at an even earlier time:

137:5.3 That night Jesus did not sleep. Donning his evening wraps, he sat out on the lake shore thinking, thinking until the dawn of the next day. In the long hours of that night of meditation Jesus came clearly to comprehend that he never would be able to make his followers see him in any other light than as the long-expected Messiah. At last he recognized that there was no way to launch his message of the kingdom except as the fulfillment of John's prediction and as the one for whom the Jews were looking. After all, though he was not the Davidic type of Messiah, he was truly the fulfillment of the prophetic utterances of the more spiritually minded of the olden seers. Never again did he wholly deny that he was the Messiah. He decided to leave the final untangling of this complicated situation to the outworking of the Father's will.
But returning to that first quote above, I think we can take the revelators' statement literally and try to adopt this idea of Jesus as Deliverer for the whole universe - a Deliverer from sin, from error, from spiritual darkness, from the idea of racial religion, from crystallized truth, from iron-clad traditionalism, and false ideas about the nature of God. Jesus stands above any traditional or racial understanding and his bestowal transcends any such narrow thinking ... even narrow planetary thinking about his coming only for our world.

Again, I want to thank you for sending this question to us and I hope that this reply is helpful to you. We are here to help as we can, and really appreciate that you are involved and interested in The Urantia Book as we are.

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Author: Staff