Tag Archives: Jesus

Jesus, the provider

Who is Jesus?

Philippians 4:19  And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.

There is only one who is capable of providing for your every need.  No matter what you lack, He’s got it in stock.  You see, everything is His.  He owns all things.  As the Psalmist put it, the “cattle on a thousand hills” are His (Psalm 50:10).  Since He owns everything, He’s capable of providing anything you could ever need.  He lacks nothing.

“This is God!” you say, and yes it is.  God the Father does provide our every need but notice that He gives “according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.”  God’s riches, all of His treasure, is in the glory of Jesus!  When Jesus was sent to this earth to die for our sins, heaven was literally bankrupted of all its riches.  God put it all on the line, every chip was on the table.

Jesus is our Great Provider.  Just as He supplied endless food from just a small amount of bread and fish, He can give us all we need.  Do we trust in Him to do just that?

Jesus, the healer

Who is Jesus?

Acts 3:6  But Peter said, “I have no silver and gold, but what I do have I give to you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk!”

Many accounts are given in the New Testament of Jesus healing people.  From the blind, to the lame, to the dead, Jesus is the ultimate physician. When He heals, God Himself has made someone well.  Of course it’s fascinating to watch events unfold as the Son of God lays hands on the sick and brings them to health.  But it’s also noteworthy that the very power of His name caused some to be healed.

Those who had walked the earth with Jesus knew His power.  Peter, who had walked on water and seen his Lord calm the storms, knew what Christ was capable of.  He had confidence that it was not he who would heal the sick, but Christ’s power through Him.  He claimed that power and gave it  and he used it in ministry.

The power of Christ in us can do more than heal physical ailments.  He can heal broken hearts, mend broken relationships, reconcile sinners to God, and regenerate hearts and lives.  If there’s anything that can be broken, He can fix it.  If there’s anything that can deteriorate, He can heal it.  There’s nothing outside His ability as the great Healer.

Jesus, the sacrificial lamb

Who is Jesus?

John 1:29  The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!

The entire Bible is the story of Jesus.  Long before He came to earth as a baby in a manger, God showed His people pictures of the future.  When Abraham was set to sacrifice Isaac, a scapegoat was provided in his place (Genesis 22:1-19).  When the Israelites in Egypt were preparing to flee with Moses, God had them shed the blood of a spotless lamb so that death would pass over them.  Then, the perfect Lamb of God entered the scene.

All along, God had been telling the story of Jesus through the lives of His people.  Then He sent His own sacrificial Lamb.  But this sacrifice was good enough to cover all sins – once, and for all.  Only Jesus, who lived among His creation, facing the same temptations as you and I, but without sinning, could take all of the sins of the world onto Himself.  Only He could provide that sacrifice for redemption.  Only He could bring justification.

John the Baptist saw it right away when he declared Jesus “the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world”.  Paul understood the symbolism when he spoke of Jesus as “our passover lamb” (1 Corinthians 5:7).  Do you see Him for what He is?  He bought your freedom with His life.

Jesus, the messiah

Who is Jesus?

John 4:25-26  The woman said to him, “I know that Messiah is coming (he who is called Christ). When he comes, he will tell us all things.” Jesus said to her, “I who speak to you am he.”

For many years, God’s people waited for a promised Messiah, the Chosen One who God would send to save them and redeem them.  They waited eagerly, expectantly.  But when the Messiah arrived, when He was right in front of them – they didn’t recognize Him.

For the Jews, the Messiah was going to be a powerful conqueror who would crash the scene and free them from their oppressors.  Then he would establish his kingdom and they’d all live happily ever after.  But things didn’t happen that way.  Jesus didn’t come riding on a stallion, shooting fireballs at the Romans.  No, He first came as a baby born in a stable, then He was a carpenter, then a travelling rabbi with no place to call home – a servant to those around Him.

He didn’t come to be served, but to serve (Mark 10:45).  No wonder they couldn’t recognize Him as the Messiah!  But He did come to free His people – not only them but also any who would follow after Him, Jews or otherwise.  He didn’t just free them from their earthly oppressors but from spiritual strongholds, from sin, from condemnation.

Whether they saw it or not, Jesus was the Messiah God had promised long ago.  He conquered sin and death and His kingdom knows no end.

Jesus, the King

Who is Jesus?

Ephesians 1:20-21 that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come.

Long ago, God’s people asked Him for a king to rule over them (I Samuel 8).  Though they were warned against such a thing, they still demanded to be ruled by a king.  God granted their request, but the history of Israel is full of men who let them down, kings who couldn’t live up to the expectations placed on them.  Many of these men did not even follow God.  But that was under the old covenant.

Today, God’s people live under the new covenant of Christ.  Jesus was appointed our King and His reign will never end.  He will never disappoint because He is fully God.  He will never lead us astray because He knows all things and He is good.  He will never fail because all things have been placed under His dominion.  His kingdom will know no end.  At the very name of Jesus, every knee will bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue will confess that He is Lord, to the glory of God the Father (Philippians 2:10-11).

He came to this earth, not to establish an earthly kingdom (though He could have), but to grant access to His heavenly kingdom – where nothing can destroy what He has created.  To what king do you pledge your allegiance?

Jesus, the Creator

Who is Jesus?

John 1:3  All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made.

Jesus, the Savior of the world, the One who was sent to redeem mankind, is the Creator of mankind.  How so?  If there is only one God and He exists as three persons (Father, Son, Holy Spirit) and He has existed from eternity…then how is Jesus not the Creator?

The apostle John comes right out of the gates with his theology.   No lineages, no birth story in a manger in Bethlehem – right to the point – Jesus is God.  “In the beginning was the Word (Jesus, the logos), and the Word was with God and the Word was God.” (emphasis and parenthetical point mine) Wait, it gets even more clear:  “All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made.” Don’t believe John?  How about Paul?  “For by Him (Jesus), all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible…” (Colossians 1:15).

How does it change your view of God to think about how the God who created us is the very same God who came to save us?  Our Creator is our Redeemer.  The One who holds all things together is the One who gave His life that we might be with Him.  How’s that for love?  Does it change how you see Jesus?  He’s not just some baby we celebrate on Christmas or just some guy with a beard who taught good moral lessons.  It all began with Him.  And it all ends with Him.

Jesus, the Son

Who is Jesus?

Galatians 4:4-7 But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law,  to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.  And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!”  So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God.

God exists eternally in the form of three equal, but distinct persons: The Father, the Son, the Holy Spirit.  Often when we talk about “God” we’re referring to God the Father.  But how can God, who is spirit, and exists outside of time, be a father?  And how can three be one?  The answer to these types of questions are not easy to explain, but the Bible does help us understand.

All three persons of the Trinity have existed since before time (John 1).  No one gave birth to the Son, He’s always existed.  Not until He came to dwell on the earth as a man was He birthed of a woman, and even then by choice.  Jesus, the Father, and the Spirit are all equal, of the same substance (John 10:30).  His place as Son is not lesser than the Father, so verses like John 14:28 speak to purpose and not to rank.  Jesus’ purpose is to glorify the Father, just as the Spirit is to bring glory to Jesus.

Further, His place as Son gives us a picture of just how God wants us to be.  God sent His only Son with the purpose that we also might become His sons, and if sons then heirs to everything Christ is entitled to.  This word sons isn’t gender related and doesn’t exclude women, it does the opposite.  There’s power in using the word sons because traditionally sons have received a greater inheritance.  By including females as His “sons”, God has granted all the same rights to His riches.  By accepting Christ, we became sons of God.  And Jesus is the “firstborn” among us.

Jesus following God’s will

God’s will

Luke 22:41  And he withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, and knelt down and prayed, saying, “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.”

All throughout the earthly ministry of Jesus we see Him obeying the Father’s will.  Not once did Jesus ever go against the master plan set out by the One who sent Him.  Though it would cost Him His life, He followed through to the end, carrying out every single step that had been ordained.  He took His obedience to the cross, dying for the sins of man.  And He’s our example.

We can never be perfect, never get it all right.  We’ll never be sinless like Christ, following the Lord’s will in every single thing He calls us to do.  But that’s the point.  We can’t do it, so Jesus did.  We were never going to be able to live perfectly within God’s will, but Christ has enabled us to seek after God’s will in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Everything Jesus did, all that’s recorded in Scripture and all that’s not, was for the greater plans of God.  He knew that even though it was painful to bear, the will of the Father was for the good of all mankind.  He gave up His will for the Father’s.  And aren’t you glad He did?

There’s a way out

1 Corinthians 10:13  No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.

So you know by now that sin is bad and that you should choose to stay away from it.  But it isn’t always just that simple, is it?  Sometimes the temptation to sin is great and just knowing that it’s wrong isn’t enough.  It can be overwhelming.

But there’s good news!  God is looking out for you.  If you belong to Him, He’s on your side and He provides a way fro you to stay true to Him.  The Holy Spirit working in you will not only nudge you to let you know when something is sin, He’ll point you to a way of escape from the temptation.

No matter how massive the temptation you’re facing, God has seen it before, Jesus has faced it before (Hebrews 4:15), and the Spirit has dealt with it before.  You’re not alone and you don’t have to face any sin or any temptation without help.  The truth is, you have the greatest help ever available because God Himself is cheering for you to win.  Find assurance in that.

Christ’s body

The Church

1 Corinthians 12:12-14 For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and all were made to drink of one Spirit. For the body does not consist of one member but of many.

The Church – we are many, but we are one – united in Christ.  Though the Church is made up of many individuals, each has his or her own part in making up the body of Christ.  Each member is like a part of a body, fulfilling a specific purpose to the greater purpose of the body as a whole.

Why do we gather as a church?  To carry out the work of Christ in the world.  To bring glory to God.  He has commissioned us to go out and do His will and bring about His purposes.  When we unite as one, we have strength in numbers, we have unity, we have a greater plan.  In our unity, God works in us and through us, just as He works in and through us as individuals.

In each of us, He gives skills and abilities.  In the corporate body He puts those skills to work, directing us right where He wants us.  Often we pair with someone whose skills complement our own and our effectiveness is doubled, as two strands of rope are far stronger than one (even better with a third – God).

United as a body, we are an unstoppable force in the world for the cause of Christ.