Who is Jesus?
Continuing our Teach Them, blog series, we now turn our attention to the person of Jesus Christ. After establishing who god is, we concluded last week’s blog post with a summary section concerning the identity of our one true God, three persons in one (God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit). Every believer is called to teach the words of God, and this includes the second person of the Godhead, Jesus Christ.
“I and the Father are one.”
Surrounding Jesus, a group of impatient Jews pressed him to answer their inquiries. Some indicated he was demon possessed and insane. Others sought more religious or scientific explanations for his words and miracles. Jesus himself answered their question concerning his identity, “I and the Father are one.” With this statement, the Jews picked up stones and were ready to stone him. With this statement, we pick up our Bibles and affirm who Jesus really is.
The Deity of Christ
Though the Jews refused to accept the deity of Jesus Christ, as Christians we must accept what the Bible clearly teaches. Jesus said “I am God, whoever sees me has seen my Father.” His disciples described him as the image of the invisible God, the Son of God, and the creator of all things. It is clear that the Bible describes Jesus as God.
Consider the names of Christ, “Son of the Most High” by the angel Gabriel (Luke 1:32), and “Son of God” by Nathanael (John 1:49). Not only does an angel address Jesus as God, but the miraculous birth of Christ through a virgin named Mary also attests to his divinity.
In addition to his names, the attributes of Jesus include eternality (Micah 5:2), omnipotence (Matthew 8:26), and omniscience (John 1:48). Even the apostle Peter declared, “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you” (John 21:17).
Christ himself proclaims his divinity declaring himself “Lord of the Sabbath” (Luke 6:5), and his mission to fulfill the Law and the Prophets (Matthew 5:17). This affirmation of deity also came from his disciples, John said that Jesus has not only seen God but made him known (John 1:18). The Scripture is explicit that no one can see God and live (Exodus 33:20), and so to assert that Jesus has seen God is to assert him as God.
The Humanity of Christ.
The Gospel of Luke says, “And Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man” (2:52). How does one explain this physical increase, the humanity of Jesus?
The Jews used names that identified Jesus’ ethnicity. Nathanael, the skeptic, used the term “Rabbi” to describe Jesus as a Jewish teacher. Even the opponents of Jesus asserted his genealogical title, “The son of David” (Matthew 22:42).
In addition, the Bible describes Jesus as possessing human attributes like mankind one very regard except sinlessness. Though his life begins with a miraculous conception (Matthew 1:20), Jesus’ delivery into the world is the same natural experience every human undergoes (Luke 2:6-7). Christ matures with physical and intellectual growth normative for any child (Luke 2:40), and also experienced exhaustion, hunger, and thirst (John 19:28). When a friend died, he displayed human emotions as he grieved over the loss (John 11:35). The apostle Paul described Jesus as a man who resurrection came from (1 Corinthians 15:21) and the one mediator between God and man, “the man Christ Jesus” (1 Timothy 2:5-6).
Hebrews 2:17 aptly summarizes the humanity of Jesus, “Therefore he had to be made like his brothers in every respect, so that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in the service of God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people.”
The Mission of Christ
The Bible declares Jesus’ divinity, spirit in essence, took on the characteristics of humanity and became the God Man. Jesus is both God and man, and His Mission is to seek and save the lost (Luke 19:10). He was born of a virgin named Mary, lived without sin, and sent to take away the sins of the world (John 3:16). Through the shedding of His blood on the cross, His death was the just punishment and substitution for our sins against God, “For everyone who believes on the name of the Lord will be saved” (Romans 10:13). After spending three days in the grave, He arose by the power of God.
His resurrection confirmed his identity. His resurrection confirmed our salvation. He is the God Man. He is the head of the church. He ascended into heaven and will return one day for His people. Then, He will judge all of mankind. He is the coming universal King who will reign forever. In light of eternity, Jesus matters because He is the means to eternity. Jesus matters because He saves people from their sins, and gauarantees a place for them in heaven. He is the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father without going through Him (John 14:6).