will I cause the Branch of righteousness to grow up unto David; not Zerubbabel, but the Messiah; who is not only a branch of David's family, and therefore said to grow up unto him, being of his seed, his son, and offspring; but a Branch of righteousness, or a righteous Branch; perfectly righteous in himself, and the author of righteousness unto others; which cannot be said of Zerubbabel, or of any other branch springing from David but the Messiah; and of him the Targum interprets it, paraphrasing it thus,
"the Messiah of righteousness;''
and Kimchi's note is,
"this is the King Messiah;''
and so it is by other Jewish writers (x) interpreted of him:
and he shall execute judgment and righteousness in the land; judgment upon the blind Pharisees given up to judicial blindness and hardness of heart; and upon the world, and the prince of it, who was cast out by him; and though he came not at first to judge the world and all the individuals of it, as he will do at his second coming; yet all judgment, rule, and government of his church, is committed to him by his Father; and he is on the throne to order and establish it with judgment, and to overrule all things for the good of it, and his own and his Father's glory: and he has "wrought" out an everlasting "righteousness", agreeably to law and justice, for the justification of his people; for which reason he and they have the name in Jeremiah 33:16.
(x) Abarbinel, Mashmiah Jeshuah, fol. 40. 2.