WHAT THE BIBLE TEACHES ABOUT JESUS CHRIST
I. The Person of Jesus Christ
A. The humanity of Christ
The Bible teaches very clearly that Jesus was fully human. That He was a man in every sense of the word. That He possessed all the qualities of human nature, yet apart from sin. Thus He fully submitted Himself to the conditions of human life and a human body.
1. He was born to the virgin Mary (Matt. 1:18).
2. He had a body of flesh and blood (Heb. 2:14).
3. He had a soul (Matt. 26:38).
4. He had a spirit (Luke 23:46).
5. He was subject to the ordinary laws of human development of body and soul (Luke 2:40-52).
6. He was subject to hunger (Matt. 4:2); thirst (John 19:28); being tired (John 4:6); felt sorrow (Matt. 23:37); and tempted in all points yet without sin (Heb. 4:15).
7. Why is this teaching important? Knowing He was really human gives you great encouragement that He knows what you're going through in your everyday life. He not only knows but can help (Heb. 2:18). Second, it is a revelation of His great humility that He would come and be made in the likeness of men, be a servant, and suffer and die (Phil. 2:5-8). Third, to see His humanity clarifies all those verses of Scripture that seem to deny His deity. These refer to His humanity and His position as subject to the Father's will (John 14:28) (1 Cor. 11:3).
B. The deity of Christ
The Bible also teaches that Jesus was not only fully human but fully Divine. Jesus declared that belief in his deity was absolutely essential for salvation. He said, "unless you believe that I Am, you will die in your sins" (John 8:24). This is God's divine name "throughout all generations" (Ex. 3:14,15). So, where do we see this?
1. Divine names given to Jesus
a. Called God (Heb. 1:9) (John 1:1) (John 20:28) (Rom. 9:5)(Titus 2:13)(1 John 5:20)(Col. 2:9).
b. Called the First and Last. Compare: (Is. 41:4) (Is. 44:6) with (Rev. 22:12,13,16) (Rev. 2:8).
c. Called Lord of all (Acts 10:36).
d. Called the mighty God. Compare: (Ps. 132:2) (Ps. 50:1) (Is. 10:21) with (Is. 9:6).
2. Divine worship is ascribed to Jesus
a. In Exodus 34:14, we are told not to worship any other god but the Lord. Yet, Jesus accepted worship (John 20:28) (Matt. 14:33). Jesus taught that you should honor Him even as you honor the Father (John 5:23,24). The New Testament writers also taught this (Heb. 1:6) (Phil. 2:10).
3. Divine qualities, offices, and attributes ascribed to Jesus
a. Pre-existence (John 1:1)(John 8:58)(Micah 5:2).
b. The authority to raise men from the dead and give them life (John 5:21,28,29).
c. The authority to judge all men (John 5:22,27) (2 Tim. 4:1).
d. Omnipotent over disease (Luke 4:29); over death (Luke 8;54,55); over nature (Matt. 8:26,27); and over demons (Luke 4:35,36,41).
e. Omniscience over the secrets of men's past lives
(John 4:16-19); over men's thoughts (Luke 5:22); and over the future choices of men (John 6:64). Notice, only God knows the hearts of men (2 Chron. 6:30).
f. Omnipresence wherever two or three gather in His name (Matt. 18:20); or wherever you are, "I am with you" (Matt. 28:20) He also declares He is in every believer (John 14:20).
g. He is eternal (Col. 1:17) (Heb. 1:8) (Micah 5:2).
h. He is immutable (Heb. 13:8)(Heb. 1:12).
h. He is the creator (Col. 1:16)(John 1:3).
i. He holds all things together (Col. 1:17)(Heb. 1:3).
j. He has the authority to forgive sins (Mark 2:5,10).
h. He bestows eternal life (John 10:28).
4. Why is this teaching important
a. Without faith in His deity, you can't be saved (John 8:24).
b. To reject this teaching from Scripture is to reject the authority of the Word of God, and the divine inspiration of its writers.
c. If Jesus was just a "man", or just a "great teacher", then it is easy to applaud His teaching and philosophy, yet never bow before Him as Lord and Savior.
d. If Jesus was just a "man", He couldn't have died for my sin, because He would have been a sinner too. A sinful man can't die for other sinful men (Ps. 49:7-9). Only the holy Spotless Lamb of God (1 Pet. 1:18,19).
II. The Work of Christ
Now what was the purpose of God coming in the flesh of a man? What work did He come to fulfill? Jesus said, "My food is to do the will of Him that sent me, and to finish His work." (John 4:34). So, what did Jesus say was His work?
A. The revelation of the Father
1. Jesus said, "no one know the Father except the Son, and he to whom the Son wills to reveal Him" (Matt. 11:27) (Luke 10:22).
2. Jesus said, "if you have seen Me you have seen the Father" (John 14:9).
3. Jesus is called, "The true and faithful witness", because He gave a perfect revelation of the Father (Rev. 1:5).
B. The death of Christ
The death of Christ is an essential theme of both the Old and New Testaments. In the Old Testament, God speaks prophetically of His death (Luke 24:27,44)(1 Peter 1:11,12). The New Testament declares the fact of His death and the purpose of it (Heb. 2;14) (1 John 3:5)(Matt. 20:28). This is one of the fundamental aspects of the Gospel message (1 Cor. 15:3). It is the theme of the song of the redeemed in heaven (Rev. 5:8-12).
1. The purpose of His death
a. He died for our sins (1 Cor. 15:3) (Is. 53:6)
b. He died that He might bring us to God (1 Peter 3:18)
c. He died that we might be enabled to live unto righteousness (1 Peter 2:24).
d. He died to redeem us from the curse of the Law (Gal. 3:10,13).
e. He died to enable us to be adopted as sons (Gal. 4:4,5).
f. He died to deliver us from this present evil world (Gal. 1:4).
2. For whom did Christ die?
a. For us all (Rom. 8:32).
b. For the sins of the world (John 1:29) (2 Cor. 5:19)
(1 John 2:2) (Heb. 2:9).
c. For you personally (Gal. 2:20).
3. The results of His death
a. This message draws all men unto Him (John 12:32,33).
b. His death nullifies sin's penalty (Col. 2:14).
c. His death nullifies the power of sin in you (Rom. 6:6,14,18).
d. His death reconciles you to God (Rom. 5:10).
e. You are justified (righteous before God) freely by His grace, through the redemption in Christ Jesus (Rom. 3:24) (Rom. 5:9).
f. His blood cleanses your conscience and causes you to become His servant (Heb. 9:14).
g. Through His death you are delivered from the fear of death (Heb. 2:14,15).
h. Through His death you are delivered from Satan's authority and power (Heb. 2:14) (Col. 1:13,14).
C. The resurrection of Christ
Christianity is the only religion which is based on the resurrection of its founder. Remove the resurrection, and the glory of His message is gone. Remove the resurrection, and all of His promises and claims have no proof. Remove the resurrection, and our faith is in vain and we are yet dead in our sins (1 Cor. 15:12-19).
1. The nature of His resurrection
a. It was a bodily resurrection. They didn't see a spirit or have a vision (Luke 24:36-43)(John 2:19-21). His body could be touched (John 20:20).
b. It was more than a natural body. It was only flesh and bone. No blood was present because His wounds did not bleed (Luke 24:39,40). He also could appear instantly in the Disciple's presence (John 20:19)(John 20:26).
2. Evidence for His resurrection
a. The Old Testament prophets predicted His death and resurrection (Acts 2:22-32). The resurrection wasn't someones idea to keep the movement going. It was God's eternal plan!
b. Jesus predicted His own death and resurrection (Mark 9:31).
c. The eyewitness account of over 500 (1 Cor. 15:3-8). Today you only need one eyewitnesses account to convict of a crime in a court of law.
d. The changed lives of the disciples. They went from fear and unbelief to boldness and faith in their proclamation of the Gospel, (Acts 2:14,32) also each gave their life for the message they preached.
e. The changed life of Paul the Apostle. Paul was changed from one who hated Jesus to His most zealous follower. Why? Because he met the risen Christ on the road to Damascus (Acts 9:1-22). He also gave his life for the message he preached.
f. Your changed life (John 7:17).
g. An empty tomb (John 20:1,2).
3. The results of His resurrection
a. He is declared, without any doubt, to be the Son of God (Rom. 1:4).
b. You are assured that one day you will live again with Him (John 14:19) (1 Thess. 4:14).
c. You are assured of an eternal inheritance (1 Pet. 1:3,4).
d. You are assured of justification (Rom. 4:25).
e. You are assured He has the power to do anything that's needed for life or service to Him (Eph. 1:19-22).
f. Assurance of a judgment day (Acts 17:31).
4. The ascension and exaltation of Christ.
The ascension of Christ refers to the event in which Jesus departed visibly from His disciples into heaven (Acts 1:9-11). The exaltation of Christ refers to the position and place given Him at the right hand of the Father (Phil. 2:9-11).
a. The purpose of His ascension and exaltation
1. He has gone to heaven to prepare a place for you (John 14:2).
2. He has gone to heaven, once and for all to offer Himself as a sacrifice for sin (Heb. 10:12)(Heb. 9:24-26).
3. He has gone into heaven to continually make intercession for us before the Father (Heb. 7:25).
4. He has gone into heaven to wait until all His enemies are made His footstool (Heb. 10:12,13) (Acts 2:34,35).
5. He has gone into heaven to be a Prince and a Savior that He might grant repentance and forgiveness (Acts 5:31).
b. The results of His ascension and exaltation
1. You see the exceeding greatness of God's power (Eph. 1:18-20).
2. You can come with boldness and confidence in prayer knowing God knows your needs and problems, because Jesus is also there at His right hand (Heb. 4:14-16).
3. You can receive the power of the Holy Spirit in your life (John 16:7) (Acts 2:33).
4. You can do the works Jesus did, and greater works will you do (John 14:12).
5. Jesus has been given a name which is above every name, that every knee should bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord (Phil. 2:9-11). Have you bowed the knee?