Life-Everlasting.net

Who and what is Jesus Christ?

For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve. 1 Corinthians 15:3 - 5

 

He was and is God

  • First spoken of in the first chapter of Genesis

"Let Us make man in Our image" (Elohim) (Genesis 1:26)

Taking Josh McDowell's scheme, Christ was either [1];

  • a liar, hypocrite, demon, fool if he thought he was God and was not, or,
  • a LUNATIC if he thought he was God and did not know it.

But all available evidence points to the fact that Christ was the Messiah: God himself.

  • Mathew Henry [2] writes

"If you deny the proper deity of the Son and Holy Spirit, you invalidate the redemption of the one and the gracious operations of the other, and by this means destroy the foundation of your own safety and comfort".

Spoken of as:

  • Taking vergence upon Satan who deceived Eve (Genesis 3:15) Caused by the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life .
  • He who is the Son of God
  • He who came in flesh - note we will know He came because He still bears the marks of the Cross (See The Revelation).
  • He who Came to save us from our sins.
  • He who Redeemed us from the curse of the law: the law which we could never keep.
  • He who has died for our sins, and hence if will allow him to bear our punishment we are saved.

 

What did Jesus Look Like?

  • We don't know!
  • He was not tall and good looking like depicted in the movies or paintings.
  • One tradition in the 2 nd century suggested Jesus was a hunch back, and at least, short and stubby, but Scripture states:

He has no form or comeliness; (no royalty or kingly pomp) And when we see Him, There is no beauty (or majesty) that we should desire (or look at) Him - nothing in his appearance that we should want be with him. Isaiah 53:2

Yet:

Great multitudes followed him Matt 5:23-25

  • They sat for days listening to him Matt 15:32 (feeding of the 4000)
  • In fact 3 days in this case
  • Fisherman would get up and leave all to follow him (Mark 1:16)

 

How did Jesus behave?

He was not backward in coming forward but was a man of affection

Brood of vipers! How can you, being evil, speak good things? (Matt 12:34)

He praised people

  • Nathanael: "Behold an Israelite indeed in whom is no deceit" (John 1:47)
  • The Centurion: "Assuredly, I say to you, I have not found such great faith, not even in Israel !" (Matt 8:10)

He Admonished people

  • Peter was rebuked with: "Get behind me, Satan!" (Matt 16:23)

He vilified people

  • "Woe unto you scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites" (Matt 23:13)

He was often move with compassion

"And Jesus, when He came out, saw a great multitude and was moved with compassion for them, because they were like sheep not having a shepherd"
(Mark 6:34)

Lazarus (John 11)

  • He groaned in the spirit and was troubled (John 11:33)
  • Then Jesus, again groaning in Himself, came to the tomb (John 11:38)
  • Jesus wept (John 11:35)

In the Garden

  • He began to be sorrowful and deeply distressed. Matt 26:37

He was man of affection

He could quickly establish intimacy with people he met:

  • The woman at a well
  • A fisherman by a lake
  • The city of Jerusalem

 

"O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing! 38See! Your house is left to you desolate; Matt 23:35

C.S Lewis writes: "He was not at all like the psychologist's picture of the integrated, balanced, adjusted, happily married employed popular citizen."

 

He had little regard as to his person

Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head."
(Matt 8:20)

  • Ego had no place
  • Pride had no place
  • Self had not place

He had no pretentiousness. He was who he was, and did not require props - clothes, an address, the right car, the right education, and the right friends to be who he was. We are reminded in Matthew 9:10 of this - the Son of Man sitting down, eating and conversing with sinners.

Jesus view is clearly expressed in:

Then He said to them in His teaching, .Beware of the scribes, who desire to go around in long robes, love greetings in the marketplaces, 39 the best seats in the synagogues, and the best places at feasts, who devour widows' houses, and for a pretence make long prayers. These will receive greater condemnation. (Mark 12:38)

He had power but never advertised it.

He, who had come to change the world, did not advertise it.

Jesus sternly warned the blind man saying "see that no one knows it" after he had healed them (Matt 9:29).

He warned the entire population: A wicked and adulterous generation looks for a miraculous sign, but none will be given it except the sign of Jonah. (Matt 16:4 )

Yet he is always referred to as Master, Rabbi or Teacher.

He used his miracles as proof as to whom he was, or more exactly, who his father was::

37 If I do not do the works of My Father, do not believe Me; John 10:37
ALSO
but if I do, though you do not believe Me, believe the work s, that you may know and believe that the Father is in M e, and I in Him." John 10:38

 

He was full of grace and truth (John 1:14)

  • He is despised, and,
  • He is rejected by men - his own, who knew him not, and,
  • He is a Man of Sorrows and acquainted with grief, and.

He was despised and we did no appreciate His worth or have any esteem for him, in fact we had absolutely no time for him (Isaiah 53:3).

He had little in the way of a relationship with "society"

Jesus got a chill response from the respectable types:

  • It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick" he responds to their barbs (Matt 9:12)
  • Even in homes that invited him, plain bad manners seed to abounded: "you gave Me no water for My feet" says bluntly, which was the truth (Luke 7:44).

Yet he Loved them

Jesus knew that His hour had come that He should depart from this world to the Father, having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end. (John 1:31)

Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God Ephesians 5:2

 

He bore a cup greater than all cups

You do not know what you ask. Are you able to drink the cup that I am about to drink, and be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?" (Matt 20:22)

 

His final week - takes up 30% of the column space in the Gospels.

He had a triumphal entry to Jerusalem (found in all four gospels) was anything but triumphant (in one sense, yet for believers it was).

One has said: A forlorn figure, weeping, riding on a donkey draped with a borrowed coat - no fine steed for our King.

The last supper where Jesus washes the feet of his disciples - a Servant to the end. (John 13, Matt 26:26)

  • Betrayed
  • Gethsemane
  • Trial

A trail that epitomises Christ as who he was (Isaiah 23 7 )

  • He was oppressed
  • We was afflicted - Yet He opened not His mouth
  • He was led as a lamb to the slaughter
  • And as a sheep before its shearers is silent.

Calvary

"Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?" that is, "My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?" (Matt 27:46)

"It is finished" (John 19:30)

Resurrection

"He is not here, but is risen" Luke 24:6

The result of his earthly occupation

Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners (1 Timothy 1:15)

Sin results in death, that is, everlasting life of the soul in hell.

If there was no Christ or resurrection:

16 For if the dead do not rise, then Christ is not risen. 17 And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins! 18 Then also those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. 1 Corinthians 15:16-18

12 Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved." Acts 4:12 (NKJV)

His present occupation - What does Christ do now?

My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world. 1 John 2:1-2

Jesus Christ:

  • He is the great mediator between God and us (Heb 8 )
  • He mediates the new covenant, represented by the cup at the Lord's table (1 Cor 1:25)
  • He is the surety (guarantor) of a better covenant (Heb 7:22)
  • It is through the blood of this everlasting covenant which makes us complete (Heb 13:20)
  • He entered heaven as Our High Priest and presents the merit of his sacrifice for our sins to God, that is he intercedes.

He intercedes on the sinner's behalf

  • He intercedes continually.

Therefore He is also able to save to the uttermost those who come to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them. Hebrews 7:25

  • He cleanses our conscience from dead works - to serve the living God
  • No sacrifice could cleanse our conscience
  • Without clean consciences we are not able, properly, to serve the living God
  • He sympathises with our infirmities (Heb 4:15) an attribute of a great mediator
  • He forgives us our sins, if we go to Him, poor and with a contrite heart, believing on Him, he cleanses us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9)
  • He loves us, hence he disciples and chastens us, he guides us. - See James
  • He is our King.
  • He will avenge our enemies - in a time to come.

 


Appendix

He rose again - how do we know?

The resurrection is the pinnacle of the actions of God towards His Son. Without resurrection we would have no hope - it is like a seed falling into the ground - dying but never springing forth. As Paul puts it, we would be "men most miserable".

  • The lie perpetuated to this day is that Christ did not rise again. This is a lie because:
  • The tomb was empty
  • The guards saw an unearthly sight and the stone rolled away (Matt 28:3-4)
  • There was an earthquake (op cit)
  • The guards, took money and a story, punishable by death if true (Matt 28:11)
  • The angels stated the tomb was empty (Luke 24:6)
  • It was sent to be empty
  • The guards
  • The angels
  • Mary Magdalene (John 20:1-2, 11)
  • Peter and John - Peter went in (John)
  • The grave clothes were "lying there" (John 19:6,7)

He was seen by.

  • Jesus' appears to Mary Magdalene (John 20)
  • Jesus' appearance to Peter alone (Luke 24:34, 1 Cor 15:15)
  • Jesus' appearance to the women (Matt 28:9)
  • Jesus' on the road to Emmaus (Luke 24)
  • Jesus' appearance to 10 at one time
  • Jesus' appearance to 11 at one time
  • Jesus' breakfast with 7 near lake (John 21)
  • Jesus' appearance to brother James (1 Cor 157)
  • Jesus' appearance to 500 (1 Cor 15:6)

He was observed in heaven by Stephen, standing on the right hand of God (Acts 7) and by Paul (out of due season) 1 Cor 15:8.

And according to the law almost all things are purified with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no remission. Hebrews 9:22 (NKJV)

If God became flesh, there are some very special characteristics about Him. We are not left in the dark concerning his nature and character: in the Old Testament there are at least two, if not three characters what are types of Christ: these are shadows of what and who the Messiah actually was, but nevertheless gives us evidence of the character of the person of Jesus.

Sin

In the beginning God created and it - His creation - was very (that is exceedingly or "vehemence") good (Genesis 1:31).

But man's desire to be like God himself (acceding to Satan's barb "For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil" ) (Genesis 3:5), he acquiesces to the fruit as being:

  • Good for food (lust of the flesh)
  • Pleasant to eyes (lust of the eye)
  • Desirable to make one wise (pride of life) (See 1 John 2:16)

And takes the forbidden fruit AND HENCE HE SINS. Following sin came death.

Sin entered the world by one man: Romans 5:12: Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned

Therefore all humans have a problem - sin is the author of death, and hence all of humanity was destined to die (the soul being lost to outer darkness). There was nothing good in anyone, due to the sin of Adam. The hardest thing for any person to accept is that there is nothing whatsoever good in him or her - there is not one ounce of goodness. That is, if we compare ourselves with God, His glory would so overwhelm us that we would die looking at Him.

The Psalmist put it eloquently: (Psalm 14:3 KJV))

They are all gone aside,
they are all together become filthy
[corrupt] :
there is none that doeth good,
No, not one.

The Old Testament clearly shows the principle of the acceptable method to deal with sin. Sin cannot be glossed over. Once you have sinned you have been stained for ever; "stained by corrupt flesh", impossible to reverse, as Jude put it. Therefore, sin must be dealt with, both intentional sin and un-intentional sin. Sin is dealt with by the shedding of blood.

 

References

[1] McDcDowell, Josh. The New Evidence that Demands a Verdict . Thomas Nelson, 1999,

[2] Henry, Matthew, Matthew Henry's Commentary on the New Testament

 

David L Simon (Feb 2006 CCC) (Ed 2012)
\Meditations\Jesus Christ - Who is He (Part 1).doc