Who Is This Jesus People Talk About Today?
There can be no doubt that Jesus lived, died and was resurrected exactly as the Bible says. By any measure, the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus is the most important Christian doctrine. This is the time of the year that modern society calls "Easter." The term "Easter" is in our King James Bible. In Acts 12:4 we read, "And when he had apprehended him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four quaternions of soldiers to keep him; intending after Easter to bring him forth to the people." (Acts 12:4) This word that is translated Easter is found almost 30 times in our New Testament and in all other places it is properly translated "Passover." Christians are not authorized to celebrate Easter as a special event to remember the resurrection of Jesus. Faithful Christians focus on the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus as they gather each Sunday to worship God in the assembly of the saints. The best attested to fact in history and the most often remembered historical fact is and should be the resurrection of Jesus!
The resurrection of Jesus is the major proof that He is the Son of God. Paul wrote, "And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead." (Romans 1:4) The resurrection of Christ means that our faith is not vain. If there is no resurrection then our faith is in vain. “And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins.” (1 Corinthians 15:17) The founder of Islam is dead and his bones are in a grave. The resurrection of Christ tells the world that the Kingdom of God is ruled by a living Savior. Just as Jesus was resurrected we too will be raised. Jesus is "the firstfruits of them that slept." (1 Corinthians 15:20) Our task now is to live so as not to neglect the great salvation made possible by the death, burial and resurrection of Christ.
Because Jesus Christ was resurrected from the dead He is our Savior. The gospel is the good News that Christ suffered sin's penalty in man's place. "Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand, by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you -- unless you believed in vain. 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." (1 Corinthians 15:1-4) The announcement of the angels was true, "For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord." (Luke 2:11) Because of Jesus man can have hope of eternal life. We do not have to go to hell! Eternity in heaven, in the presence of God can be ours through Jesus Christ.
Because Jesus Christ was resurrected from the dead He is the bread of life: Jesus said, "I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst." (John 6:35) Jesus is the only thing that will satisfy the cravings of man’s soul. The "junk" of this world will do nothing for your soul so let it go and focus your life on Jesus!
Because Jesus Christ was resurrected from the dead He is the light of the world: Jesus said, "I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life." (John 8:12) Without Jesus we walk in darkness. Do you need some help as you are walking alone in darkness? Jesus is the one that can help you! He is the only way out of your darkness. He will light your heart and your light your world with His word.
Because Jesus Christ was resurrected from the dead He is the door to the sheep: Jesus said, "…Most assuredly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep." (John 10:7) The entrance into God’s sheepfold is Jesus Himself. This is just another way of saying that Jesus Christ is the only way of salvation, the only way into the kingdom of God, the only way to the Father. Jesus is the only door. He is an exclusive door. He is the door of the sheep, not the door of the goats.
Because Jesus Christ was resurrected from the dead He is the good shepherd: Jesus said, "I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep." (John 10:11) Jesus leads, saves and protects His people. Deep down inside we all realize that we require guidance or leadership, also known as shepherding, to make our way down the roads of life. I love Isaiah 40:11, " He shall feed his flock like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young."
Because Jesus Christ was resurrected from the dead He is the resurrection and the life: Jesus said, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live." (John 11:25 These words are true that with Jesus there is no need to fear death., each one who dies will rise again and those who are saved will rise to an eternity of communion with God Himself.
Because Jesus Christ was resurrected from the dead He is the way, the truth, and the life: Jesus said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." (John 14:6) "As long as you believe in God and try to be a good person, it doesn’t matter what religion you belong to." "There are different paths up the mountain, but they all lead to the summit." How many times have you heard people say such things? It is politically correct but Jesus said such thinking is wrong. He said, "I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father but by me." Once we have been baptized into Christ we become members of His body and then we live His life. There is no other way!
The one who knows our heart, Jesus said, "I will kill her children with death, and all the churches shall know that I am He who searches the minds and hearts. And I will give to each one of you according to your works." (Revelation 2:23) Jesus not only knows what we do, but also what is in our heart as we do it. The bright and morning star, Jesus said, "I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things in the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, the Bright and Morning Star." (Revelation 22:16) Jesus fulfilled all that the Old Testament said about the Messiah.
Jesus is our wonderful Savior. All mankind should bow in humility before Him. Let everyone say with Job, "For I know that my Redeemer lives..." (Job 19:25) Our spiritual life is through and because of Jesus, the Christ. “But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone.” (Hebrews 2:9) To be saved from sin hear the gospel (Romans 10:17), believe in Jesus as God’s Son (Mark 16:16), repent of all sins (Luke 13:5), confess Christ as Lord (Matthew 10:32), and be baptized into Christ (Romans 6:3-4) After our baptism into Christ we must live in Christ and have Christ in us (Galatians 4:19)
By Charles Box, Walnut Street Church of Christ, 306 Walnut Street, Greenville, Alabama 36037 USA