Isa. 9:6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
Isa. 9:7 Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.
Welcome To The Light-Washed Path,
Who Is Jesus????
Men have been all over the map of truth trying to stake a claim for the answer to this question. Is He God? Is He man? Is He Messiah or simply a teacher? Is He from Heaven or simply earthly, like the rest of us? There is an answer that must be stretched over several questions in order to unfold entirely.
The Person of Jesus is so enormous that viewing Him from only one perspective will not reveal Him. It’s like trying to explain the horizon before men figured out what the earth was. Like the horizon, our vision of Jesus is ever expanding before us as we move ahead. It’s the last thing we see before our vision falls into infinity. It’s the leading edge of our line of sight limited as it is, by our inability to see around the corners. That is, unless were assisted by elevation and movement.
Elevation And Movement
Eph. 1:17 that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him.
Eph. 1:18 I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints,
Eph. 1:19 and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe.
Elevation and Movement describe the effect of the Holy Spirit upon our understanding. He lifts us and moves us forward, from glory to glory, as we stretch to see the Son of God with our understanding. It’s like chasing the expanding horizon in the Space Shuttle, as opposed to standing in your backyard, looking west. To understand Jesus, one must have certain pillars of truth raised in their minds and firmly planted in their hearts.
So here are the 3 questions over which we consider, Who Is Jesus?
#1 – What is God What is man?
This is a 2-part question, because only man can know God. To know God, we must understand our own unique creation. Its not until we realize our own superior distinction among all other living things that we begin to grasp what God is.
Jesus calls Himself the son of man, 32 times in Matthew alone.
Matt. 16:13 When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?
As son of man, Jesus is the perfect display of humanity: the image of God. His Son, communing with Him. But Jesus also claims to be God.
John 8:58 Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.
So Jesus is the God-Man. He is the very image of Gods intended purpose for us, from the beginning.
Heb. 1:1 God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways,
Heb. 1:2 in these last days has spoken to us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the world.
Heb. 1:3 And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high.
He represents our becoming!
1 John 3:2 Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.
1 John 3:3 And every man that hath this hope in him purifies himself, even as he is pure.
#2 – Why don’t we know God?
Moral blindness. We are spiritually incompatible with and unable to see God. God cannot be known simply as a principle. He must be known as an eternal moral Being. You believe Genghis Khan existed but you don’t know him. We are separated by the darkness of sin.
To answer the question, ’Who Is Jesus?’, you must first understand that you are separated from God by sin, and that whatever Jesus is, He is designed to solve that problem.
John the Baptist knew Who He was, by knowing what was wrong between God and man:
John 1:29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold theLamb of God, which takes away the sin of the world.
#3 – How can we know God?
We can’t go to Him so He must come to us. So Jesus came to carry us to the Father. By His offering He bore us carried us, to the Father.
John 17:13 And now I come to you
John 17:21 May they all be one! Even as you, Father, are in me and I am in you, so let them be in us
John 17:23 I in them, and you in me, so that they may be made completely one, and so that it may become clear to all men that you have sent me and that they are loved by you as I am loved by you.
John 17:24 Father, it is my desire that these whom you have given to me may be by my side where I am .
Jesus carries us to the Father
Psa. 24:3 Who shall ascend into the hill of the LORD? or who shall stand in his holy place?
Psa. 24:4 He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully.
Psa. 24:5 He shall receive the blessing from the LORD, and righteousness from the God of his salvation. (Jesus did this!)
Jesus Himself is the answer to each of those 3 questions.
He reveals God. He reveals man.
He reveals why we don’t know God.
He reveals how we can know God.
While all other religions and belief systems truly are the opiates of the human race, Jesus is man’s wake up from lethal sleep. In Jesus, Paul tells of having his eternal perspective awakened, as he begins to reach beyond his mortality, to grasp his identity. In Jesus, Paul is made aware of himself as an eternal being, and at the same time painfully aware of his ability to follow Him into eternity. This sets up Paul to begin to grasp the significance of the Son that was given, and the significance of His death and resurrection.
Phil. 3:10 that I may know Him, and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death;
Phil. 3:11 in order that I may attain to the resurrection from the dead.
(also, Gal 2:20)
Jesus is the literal bridge between God and man. Spanning both the temporal and eternal worlds, He is both the image of God and the template of man. And because He is our design and designer He is perfectly suitable to be the son offered on our behalf.
Gen. 22:10 And Abraham stretched out his hand, and took the knife to slay his son.
Gen. 22:11 But the angel of the LORD called to him from heaven, and said, Abraham, Abraham! And he said, Here I am.
Gen. 22:12 And he said, Do not stretch out your hand against the lad, and do nothing to him; for now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your son, your only son, from Me.
Gen. 22:13 Then Abraham raised his eyes and looked, and behold, behind him a ram caught in the thicket by his horns; and Abraham went and took the ram, and offered him up for a burnt offering in the place of his son.
Gen. 22:14 And Abraham called the name of that place The LORD Will Provide, as it is said to this day, In the mount of the LORD it will be provided.
Gen. 22:15 Then the angel of the LORD called to Abraham a second time from heaven,
Gen. 22:16 and said, By Myself I have sworn, declares the LORD, because you have done this thing, and have not withheld your son, your only son,
Gen. 22:17 indeed I will greatly bless you, and I will greatly multiply your seed as the stars of the heavens, and as the sand which is on the seashore; and your seed shall possess the gate of their enemies.
Gen. 22:18 And in your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice.
We were made in the image and likeness of God so that we would seek to commune as He does, and He could respond to us in kind. We are perfectly engineered for fellowship. We were designed like Him so our actions towards Him could provoke reactions from Him.
Jesus was God giving us something we could offer to Him, a response that would provoke the blessing He desired to bestow upon us.
Jesus was God’s response to Abraham’s sacrifice.
Tomorrow we will begin to look at the 5 descriptive names that God said Jesus would be known as. Until then …
Stay On The Path!