[Lesson 98: Paradise] [Table of Contents] [Lesson 100: What Do You Think about Jesus? (#2)]

Lesson 99

What Do You Think about Jesus?

Part 1

{Radio programs #99 and #100 are adapted from a sermon by C. R. Marsh, who helped translate the "Injil" into several Arabic dialects of North Africa.}

Peace be with you, listening friends. We greet you in the name of God, the Lord of peace, who wants everyone to understand and submit to the way of righteousness that He has established, and have true peace with Him forever. We are happy to be able to return today to present your program The Way of Righteousness.

For a long time now, we have been examining the Scriptures of the Prophets to see the righteous way established by God, by which sinners can become righteous before Him. We have seen how Jesus the Messiah fulfilled the words of God's prophets. Today and in the next lesson, we intend to review with you the glory of the One of whom all the prophets spoke. Thus, our final two lessons in our chronological study of the Scriptures of the Prophets are entitled, "What do you think about Jesus?"

In our study in the Gospel {Injil}, we heard Jesus ask people, "What do you think about the Christ? Whose son is he?" (Matt. 22:42) This is the most important question that each of us must answer in life. Our destiny in the hereafter depends on our response to this question! Soon Jesus the Messiah will return, and when He comes, He will question you as He questioned the people of His time, saying, "How about you, what do you think of me?"

Our goal is to make known to you who Jesus really is. Our greatest concern is that no one misleads you in this matter. We urge you not to assume that Jesus Christ was merely one of the prophets, or a good man among men. No, He is unique! He has no equal in this world or in the world to come. What do you think about Him? Who do you think He is? There are ten questions that we would like to ask you about Jesus the Messiah, five in this program and five in the next.

1.) First, what do you think about His amazing birth?

No one has ever been born like Him. He is Jesus the Son of Mary. You know that John was called the son of Zechariah, Solomon the son of David, Ishmael the son of Abraham. Everyone takes the surname of his father or adds his father's name to his own name. But in Jesus' case, why is the name of His mother attached to His name? It is because He did not have a father on earth. He was born of a young lady who was a virgin. He was born by the power of God. About seven hundred years before the Messiah was born, the prophet Isaiah predicted how He would be born, when he said, "The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel (which means,"God with us)!" (Isa. 7:14; Matt. 1:23)

It was from the dust of the ground that God created our ancestor Adam. We all are descendants of Adam, as were the prophets. We are of the earth. However, the Lord Jesus came from heaven. We are all like dirty soil because of our sin, but Jesus was like the rain which comes from heaven. He was pure and holy, just as God is pure and holy. The Gospel record declares: "Jesus came into the world to save sinners." (1 Tim. 1:15) Before Jesus came into the world, He was in the presence of God, because He is the Word of God and the Soul of God. He Himself chose to come and take on a human body, to save us from our sins. He came from above.

The story is told of two men who fell into a deep well. One said to the other, "Hey man, save me from this wretched place! Get me out of this slimy mud!" However, the other said to him, "Stupid, how can I get you out when you and I both are in this pit?!" They were both in it, and neither one could get the other out. Then they heard a voice from above telling them to grab hold of a rope that was being lowered into the well. Only someone who had not fallen into the well could help them.

The very best of the prophets could not save us from the deep, deep pit of sin, because they too were sinners. However, Jesus did not inherit the sinful nature that is in man. He came from above. He was born of a virgin. We also saw that God sent His angels, and that He placed a great star in the sky to announce the birth of the holy Messiah, the Savior of the world! How miraculous it all was! No man has ever been born like this Man. He is unique in His birth. He is incomparable! However, the greatness of Jesus does not end with His birth. Jesus is also unique in His character. Thus, our second question is:

2.) What do you think of His holy character?

Jesus was perfect. He never committed a single sin. He never asked for forgiveness, because He never wronged anyone. Every person who fears God must repent of His sin and ask for forgiveness. All the prophets did this. However, you can search the Word of God from beginning to end {Lit. in Wolof: go around until you meet where you started}, but you will not find a single verse which says that the Lord Jesus requested forgiveness. He did not need forgiveness since He never sinned. His friends and His enemies all testified that they could not find a single fault in Him. Friends, there is no one else who is without sin. The Lord Jesus is more than a prophet. He is the very Word of God that appeared upon earth as a man. Yes, Jesus is unique in His character. He is incomparable! But there is something else important to understand. Jesus is also unique in His words.

3.) What do you think about His words?

One day, His enemies sent soldiers to arrest Him. When they arrived and listened to His teachings, they returned without arresting Him. They were amazed and said, "No one ever spoke the way this man does!" (John 7:46)

Consider what He said about Himself. "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life." (John 8:12) The prophets are like the moon and stars that diffuse a weak light in the darkness. But Jesus is like the sun. Who needs the light of the moon and stars once the sun has risen? The prophets called the Messiah "the Sun of Righteousness." (Mal. 4:2) The waning crescent moon is like the prophets. But Jesus Christ is the sun. Have you ever seen the sun wane? No, it never goes out. It lights all the continents. Jesus Christ is like the sun. He will never pass away. He is for every nation of the world.

Jesus also said, "I am the way, the truth and the life." (John 14:6) Jesus is very different from the religious leaders who give orders, saying, "Do this, follow this teaching. This is the way. Keep these commandments…" The Lord Jesus said, "I am the way. Believe in me, come to me, and you will have the right to live in the presence of God forever." Jesus Himself is The Way. Let us try to illustrate what this means.

A small boy was lost in a big city. The child asked a police officer to explain to him the way back to his neighborhood. The officer said to him, "Go straight ahead, turn left at the second corner, take a right at the third corner, cross the bridge, take the traffic circle and then follow the second main road . . ." The child burst into tears. That police officer explained the way, but the child was too confused and afraid to follow what had been explained to him. Just then, a man from the same neighborhood came along. He took the child by the hand, and led him. When the child was tired of walking, the man carried him until they arrived at the house. The police officer explained the way. However, the other man was the way. Jesus said: I am the way. I am the way that leads to heaven, the house of God. "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to [God] the Father except through me." (John 14:6) No one ever spoke like the Lord Jesus Christ! He is unique. He is incomparable! However, the glory of Jesus does not stop at His birth, His character and His words. We can see it also in His works.

4.) What do you think about the mighty works of Jesus?

He can do anything. All power and all authority are given to Him. Whatever works God has done, the Lord Jesus did on earth, to show people where He came from and who He was. Who can still the wind but God? Jesus stilled the wind. Who can raise the dead to life but God? Jesus raised the dead to life. Who can open the eyes of the blind but God? Jesus did that too. He healed every kind of disease. He spoke one word and the demons fled. He changed the lives of many people and saved them from sin. God gave some of the prophets the power to do certain miracles. But the Lord Jesus did miracles by His own authority and power. He is the One who could stand over a paralyzed man, look him in the eyes and say, "I tell you, Get up, take your mat and go home!" (Luke 5:22) The man stood up and went home praising God! Jesus didn't heal with medicine or magic. By the power and authority of His word alone He healed the sick.

A man named Lazarus died and was buried. When Jesus arrived Lazarus had already been buried for four days. Jesus went to the tomb and said, "Lazarus, come out!" (John 11:43) The corpse came out of the tomb. Jesus has the authority to raise the dead which is why He could say, "I am the resurrection and the life!" (John 11:25) The day is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear His voice and arise to stand before Him. Listening friend, you too will come out of the tomb if you have died. Even now, the Lord Jesus can give you a new life and the authority to live forever in paradise, if you believe in Him as your Savior and Lord. Jesus is still transforming the lives of many people around the world. He can transform your life too. What do you think about Jesus? What do you think about His works? He is unique. He is Almighty. He is incomparable! Before we leave today, let us ask you one more question about Jesus:

5.) What do you think about His names and titles?

As we have seen in the Writings of the Prophets, Jesus has hundreds of names and titles. These names help us to better understand who He is. For example, He is called: Immanuel…the Word…the Son of Man…the Lamb of God…the Redeemer…the Savior…the Bread of Life…the True Vine…the Good Shepherd…the Light of the World…the Lord of Glory…the Resurrection…the Alpha and Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and End…the Door…the Way, the Truth and the Life…and the Son of God!

We saw that God's prophet, Moses, was called the man of God. The prophet Abraham was called the friend of God. But only One Person is called The Son of God. Tell us, who has the closest relationship to a man, his friend or his son? Speak the truth that is in your heart. Yes, Jesus was called the Son of God. God called Jesus His Son to distinguish Him from all others. We read in the Gospel that God declared of Jesus, saying, "This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased. Listen to him!" (Matt. 17:5) What did God mean? We say that the Son is the shadow of the father. The son reflects the image of the father. Jesus shows us what God is like. That is what the Scripture declares when it says: "No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only, who is at the Father's side, has made him known." (John 1:18) Do you want to know God, and have a wonderful relationship with Him forever? Then come to the Lord Jesus, whom God called His Son. A son can speak in the name of his father. That is what Jesus did when He was among men. That is why He was called Immanuel which means God with us.

Some assume that God cannot appear on earth in a human body. However, anyone who thinks this way does not yet understand the plan which God designed to save sinners. His plan required that the Eternal Son of God appear upon earth in a human body, to make Himself known to the children of Adam, and redeem them from the hand of the devil. Friends, God is great and He can do anything. God wants everyone to know Him. That is why He became a man and lived on the earth.

What do you think about the names and titles of Jesus the Messiah? He is incomparable. What do you think about His birth, His character, His words and His works? Whom do you consider Him to be? "What do you think about the Christ? Whose son is he?" (Matt. 22:42)

Our time is up for today. God willing, in the next study we will ask and answer five more questions about Jesus and complete our journey through the Holy Scriptures.…

God bless you as you ponder this verse of Scripture:

"In Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and you (who believe) have been given fullness in Christ." (Col. 2:9,10)