Christ Jesus Primer - Disciples Path Ministry

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Christ Jesus - Primer

What does the Bible say about Jesus?
This is not an argument for the inerrancy of our Bible or any of the many common and ordinary arguments with regard to our Bible. In this narrative I simply wish to present what the Bible says about Jesus. From the OT (Old Testament) one finds it describes the Creation and preparation of the world for His coming. From the NT (New Testament) one finds the four Gospels are eyewitness accounts of His life. The rest of the NT describes the establishment of the soon to be called “Christian” church. I purposefully did not capitalize church in the previous sentence.
From our Bible we discover circumstances concerning the promise of His coming, the preparation for His appearance, circumstances of His miraculous birth, the context of His teachings, details of His death and resurrection, also people who knew Him personally and spread His teaching throughout the then known world.
So who is Jesus really?
Here are some facts that are not based on what I, or any other true Believer thinks or feels about Him.
1. Historians confirm His existence. Not just religious historians but secular historians such as Flavius Josephus. Interestingly, many historical accounts that mention Him     appear to regard Him as they would any other account of the day. Other secular historians do mention His uniqueness as well as some of His miracles.
2. He was born Jesus, son of Joseph of Nazareth.
3. He is claimed to be the Messiah.
4. He was executed by Romans.
5. His followers established the “Christian” religion.
Keep in mind that all five of those come from secular history and not just religious history!
Our Bible provides the following accounts from His own disciples:
The following are just three examples from our Bible of the recorded accounts provided by His own disciples. Two of the three accounts are from actual eyewitnesses. These two lived with Jesus all during His approximate 3-year ministry.
1. Peter - was the first to be called to follow Jesus on a full time basis. Peter, also known as Simon Peter, and his brother Andrew had a family business. They were fishermen by trade. Peter was martyred in Rome. In the Book of Matthew, it is written Jesus asked His disciples the following: (v.15) He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” (16) Simon Peter answered and said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God” (Matt. 16:15-16, NKJV). After Jesus’ crucifixion and ascension, Peter rebukes the Jews. (v.14) But you denied the Holy One and the Just, and asked for a murderer to be granted to you, (15) and killed the Prince of Life, whom God raised from the dead, of which we are witnesses” (Acts 3:14-15, NKJV). Peter is credited with authoring two of the Epistles provided in our Bible. These books, also called epistles or letters, were written as instructional texts for the laity meaning the ordinary people of the early “Christian” church (source: Peter is traditionally credited with writing two books of the NT. They are 1 Peter and 2 Peter. The Book of Mark was presumably dictated by Peter to John Mark, who transcribed it. Peter claimed that Jesus was the Christ/Messiah. Peter claimed Jesus was divine and was resurrected from the dead. Given all that Peter saw and experienced there is no wonder that he refused to deny who Jesus actually is. All Peter had to do to save his life was to renounce Jesus but how could he? Rather than deny Christ Jesus, Peter was crucified. Peter requested to be crucified upside down because he felt unworthy to die in the same manner as Christ Jesus.
2. Thomas - referred to by many as “doubting Thomas.” Thomas lived with Jesus and just like the other disciples (later called Apostles), he saw Jesus perform miracles. Later after Jesus’ crucifixion, Thomas was convinced Jesus was dead. This evidently crushed Thomas as he was convinced that Jesus was the Messiah that not only he, but everyone, was waiting for. After seeing Jesus was definitely dead, Thomas lost hope and his belief in Jesus was destroyed. Later, upon hearing of Jesus’ resurrection he believed it to be a hoax. He remained skeptical until Jesus confronts him face to face. He would not believe the story of Jesus’ resurrection until he saw the wounds with his own eyes. From the Book of John we read that when the LORD appeared to the disciples after His resurrection, and said to them “Receive the Holy Spirit” (John 20:22, NKJV), Thomas was absent. ”Now Thomas called the Twin, one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came (v. 24). (25)The other disciples therefore said to him, “We have seen the Lord.” So he said to them, “Unless I see in His hands the print of the nails, and put my fingers into the print of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe.” (26) And after eight days His disciples were again inside, and Thomas was with them. Jesus came, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, “Peace to you!” (27)Then He said to Thomas, “Reach your finger here, and look at My hands; and reach your hand here, and put it into My side. Do not be unbelieving, but believing.” (28) And Thomas answered and said to Him, “My Lord and my God!” (John 20:24-28, NKJV). Upon his encounter with Jesus, He once again believes Jesus to be who He claims to be. He knows without a doubt that Jesus is risen from the dead. He claims Jesus is God, Jesus is worthy of worship, and Jesus has authority over him. Thomas was also martyred. He was tortured and then had his head cut off because while in prison he was teaching other prisoners in the name of Christ Jesus, the way of God.
3. Paul – Paul of Tarsus (originally called Saul) was not an eyewitness. To me this just ads so much to the accuracy of the records of Jesus. Here are some of my reasons why - Before Paul’s conversion he was a popular Pharisee. Briefly, Pharisees were considered a type of lawyer belonging to the Pharisee party. Originally, the Pharisees were looked up to during the part of history that the Greek culture had too much influence over the Jews (part of the intertestamental period). However, the Pharisee party drifted into legalism and subsequently went astray and started making up their own rules. Paul originally persecuted the Church. However, the Bible recounts how Paul had a life-changing encounter with Jesus in the form of a great light (Acts 22:4-16). He later establishes “Christian” churches in the Roman Empire. Nero in Rome martyrs him for his faith in Christ Jesus. The exact details of Paul’s death are presently unknown however, according to later reports, in 65 A.D. Paul was imprisoned in Rome and beheaded. Even though Paul never physically walked, talked, and observed Jesus in person, he goes on to claim Jesus as the Visible image of God. He claimed Jesus existed before Creation. In Mark 16, he claims Jesus to be Supreme over Creation. Paul goes on to claim Jesus as Agent of creation, Jesus is eternal, He is the Head of the Church (notice the capital C in Church), and Jesus leads the resurrected. What a strong testimony from someone who originally hated Jesus to someone knowing he has a strong possibility of being martyred for his belief in Jesus!
So what does Jesus say about Himself in our Bible?
I believe His most straightforward statement of Himself comes from the story of the Samaritan woman. From the Book of John, “The woman said to Him, “I know that Messiah is coming” (who is called Christ). “When he comes, He will tell us all things” (John 4:25, NKJV). (V26) Jesus said to her, “I who speak to you am He.”
What are some things our Bible says about Jesus?
1. He is a true historical figure
2. He is the Jewish Messiah
3. He is the Son of God
4. He is LORD God Himself
5. He was resurrected from the dead
6. He is Eternal Being
7. He is Agent of Creation
8. He is Head of the Church
9. He is supreme authority over heaven and earth
Lastly, I bring your attention to something from the Book of John. Specifically John 20:30-31. From the Book of John (V30) And truly Jesus did many other signs in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book; (31) but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in His name (NKJV). It is written in John 21:25, And there are also many other things that Jesus did, which if they were written one by one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that would be written. Amen.
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