Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in History



First Reader/Committee Chair

Barber, Cary


This Thesis challenges notions that have dominated biblical scholarship for more than a hundred years. Up until the end of the twentieth century scholars uniformly believed that the concept of a suffering Messiah was not part of early first century CE Judaism. It was believed to a be a Christian creation. There is however startling evidence of messianic precursors to Jesus, including one who is introduced as the 'Prince of the Congregation' in recently published fragments of the Dead Sea Scrolls. This is not surprising since the authors of the Tanakh lay the groundwork for an evolving and malleable concept of Messiah or “anointed leader." The recent archaeological discovery of Hazon Gabriel, or the Gabriel Revelation, has provided substantial proof of syncretic evolution between Judaism and Christianity. Concurrent research shows the parallelism between Judaism and the larger Hellenic religious traditions of the first-century BCE, including the absorption of a Hellenic messianic archetype. This Thesis discusses how this symbiotic interaction between a Jewish Messiah and Hellenic savior archetype filtered into Christianity through a Jewish thought. The findings of this Thesis deepen understanding of the Jewish community of the first century BCE through first century CE and the evolving messianic expectations of various Jewish groups including first century CE Christian converts.