“Messiah,” an oratorio composed by George Frideric Handel in 1741 traces a clear scriptural text compiled by Charles Jennens (1700-1773) as a study of the Messiah as revealed through the Old Testament (almost 60% of the “Messiah” is made up of quotes from the Old Testament scriptures).
It was first performed in Dublin on April 13, 1742, and received its London premiere nearly a year later. After an initially modest public reception, the oratorio gained in popularity, eventually becoming one of the best-known and most frequently performed choral works in Western music.
Jennens's text is an extended reflection on Jesus as Messiah (or Christ).
Jennens's framework reveals the Messiah as the Promised One from the entirety of the Bible.