Who is Jesus?
This is the Good News about Jesus the Messiah, the Son of God. —Mark 1:1 (NLT)
JESUS! The Holy Scriptures call Him many names—the Anointed One, Messiah, Christ, Redeemer, Teacher, and Prophet. The Scripture writers reveal Jesus as a humbled Servant of God, who suffered for the sins of the entire world, and will return from Glory. The Apostle Paul of the New Testament called Jesus “the Lord.” The Book of Hebrews describes Jesus as God’s great and final High Priest, who makes the final sacrifice and is the Sacrifice of God for human sins. Most important, Jesus Christ is the Word of God, God in the flesh, and the Son of the living God (Mark 1:1; John 20:30-31). He is best known as the Savior of the World (Matthew 1:21).
Jesus is part of the Trinity. God is Creator and Ruler of the universe who exists externally as a Trinity of three persons—the God the Father, the God the Son (Jesus Christ), and the God the Holy Spirit. God the Father is the first person of the Trinity, who controls all things according to His will and perfect purpose. The Holy Spirit gives the power and guidance for right living, convicting humankind of sins and their need for Jesus Christ. The Trinity is a picture of the unique relationship of God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, and is one of the most important ideas of the Christian faith. The Holy Scriptures affirm the existence of the Trinity, including Jesus Christ’s final words in Matthew 28:19 (see also, e.g., Genesis 1:26; Genesis 3:22; Isaiah 6:8).
The Scripture writers reveal and prove that Jesus is both fully human and fully God, who has existed before the creation of the world. The Holy Scriptures reveal that Jesus came down from God the Father, emptied Himself, and became like a human to save all people from their sins. He was with God in the beginning as Creator and Sustainer of all things (Genesis 1:1; John 1:1). The New Testament writers Matthew and Luke established Jesus as a descendant to King David, to Moses, to Abraham, and to Adam (Matthew 1:1-17; Matthew 2:1-6; Luke 3:34, 38).
Yet, Jesus’ earthly ministry began humbly with His birth in Bethlehem, the “city of David.” Two Gospels, Matthew and Luke, tell of His mother Mary’s miraculous, virgin conception through power of God’s Holy Spirit. Angels announced Jesus’ coming. Shepherds heard, came, and wondered, and Magi (Wise Men) came later to bring gifts. Seldom, if ever, did Jesus call Himself the customary terms “Messiah” or “Son of God.”
Jesus is the “Good Shepherd” (John 10:11-16) “who went about doing good” while on earth (Acts 10:38). He continues to do good to people that trust in Him as Savior and Lord. Jesus is filled with love, gentleness, encouragement, justice, and truth (Isaiah 42:1-4; Matthew 12:18-21). During His earthly ministry, He healed all kinds of people, raised some from the dead, cast out evil spirits, and calmed a raging storm. He kept company with sinners, prostitutes, and tax collectors (Mark 2:17). Jesus’ humility, suffering, and mercy on the Cross at Calvary revealed His strength and power.
Even more, Jesus taught on the importance of the absolute obedience, faithfulness, and love for God. He taught all people to live on earth by His teachings on the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7) and by love for God and our neighbors (Matthew 22:34-40; John 13:34-35). Most important, Jesus lived a sinless and pure life, and He willingly gave His life as a sacrifice for human sin by dying selflessly on the Cross at Calvary. On the Cross, Jesus carried our sins, weaknesses, sickness, disease, and sorrows. He was pierced, crushed, beaten, and whipped so that people can be whole and healthy in all aspects of life (see also Isaiah 57:18). The Apostle Paul connected Jesus’ death to the sacrificial system of the Old Testament. In the Old Testament, people offered animals as sacrifices for their sins to obtain forgiveness. Jesus Christ became humankind’s final Sacrifice as the sinless and spotless Lamb to eliminate sins of all people for those who believe (Isaiah 53:7; John 1:29; Revelation 5:6-14). He welcomes all people with open arms of love (John 3:16)!