Jesus asked the disciples a question: Who do people say the Son of Man is? That question has different answers for different people. To the Jehovah Witnesses, Jesus is a created being, the son of God, but not God Himself. To Hindus, Jesus is just one of the many gods that exist. To Muslims, Jesus is a good man, an esteemed prophet but not God. The book of Revelation is the revelation of Jesus Christ (not just the revelation from Jesus Christ). Jesus is revealed as the Alpha and the Omega. He is the One who was and is and is to come. He is the King of kings and the Lord of lords. It is imperative that we understand who Jesus is. A defective view of Jesus will affect our Christianity. A right view of Jesus will transform us. Let’s take a look at Hebrews 1:1 – 14.
Jesus is Creator
Jesus is not a created being: In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God (John 1:1). It was the divine Jesus that created the heavens and the earth (John 1:3; Colossians 1:16). Creation is fascinating: there are so many animals and birds; there are beautiful flowers and breathtaking landscapes. I still remember New England autumns where the leaves would change from green into resplendent colors before dropping off to signal the coming of winter. Scripture indicates that God created ex nihilo (out of nothing); He created without pre-existing materials. If I give an artist some materials to work with, he would be able to create something, but to ask him to create something out of nothing would be impossible. Even the theory of evolution requires the pre-existence of matter.
The world was created by the spoken word. Jesus just spoke and the world came into existence. He created both what is visible and what is invisible: the visible refers to everything that we can see including the various celestial bodies; the invisible refers to the spiritual world of angelic beings. As God finalized His creation, He created man in His image: “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him, male and female he created them” (Genesis 1:27). The earth was created for the benefit of man. God provided everything that was needed before placing mankind in the earth. Creation is for God’s glory and man exists to worship God.
Creation demonstrates God’s omnipotence, wisdom, love and sovereignty. The Bible says that the earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it; for he founded it upon the seas and established it upon the waters (Psalm 24:1, 2). God provided everything that man needed. Because He is the omnipotent God, He is able to intervene in the situations of your life. There is absolutely nothing that God cannot do for you that is in perfect conformity to His will. God will provide for you even in supernatural ways. The story is told of a minister who spoke on the importance of generosity. A little girl took that message to heart and began putting aside money to give to God’s work. One day, she gave the minister $1, the total that she had managed to accumulate; she also gave him a letter that explained what the money was for. The minister accepted it gratefully; he had been trying to get $5,000,000 to purchase a property for ministry purposes. Sometime after, the little girl died, and the minister still only had the dollar. He spoke to the owners of the property and showed them the little girl’s letter. They accepted the $1 as full payment for the property. God is no respecter of persons. If we trust Him, He will meet our needs and at times He will do so in supernatural ways.
Just as Jesus demonstrated wisdom in creation, He will give you strategic wisdom to deal with any situation. Much is being made of the economic recession. Pharaoh, in the time of Joseph, was given a dream, the interpretation of which was that seven years of famine will follow seven years of plenty. Those seven years of famine are equivalent to our recession, yet God gave Joseph strategic wisdom to know exactly what to do. Similarly, God will give His people the solutions that are needed not only to weather this crisis, but to come out victoriously. If everything belongs to God, then we can be assured that there is no lack in His kingdom.
Jesus sustains creation: He did not create it, then like an absentee landlord, leave it to function on its own. The same God who created is the same God who maintains His creation. It was Jesus who said that He will build His church and that the gates of hell will not be able to prevail against it. He will guard and keep what we commit to Him – our salvation and soul. Some of you are familiar with the story of Nicki Cruz. Nicki was a gang leader in New York City. When David Wilkerson shared the gospel with him, Nicki slapped him and threatened to kill him. Undaunted, David continued to preach the love of Christ. In spite of his threat, Nicki could not resist the conviction of the gospel message and eventually he and some of the other gang members accepted Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior. Nicki eventually went on to become a powerful evangelist, ministering all over the world. Scripture tells us that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. Glory is ascribed to Him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before His glorious presence without fault and with great joy.
Jesus is God
Jesus is fully God: In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. In John 5:18 and 10:33, the Jews wanted to kill Jesus because He equated Himself with God. Further, in John 8:58, Jesus referred to Himself as “I Am,” identifying Himself with Jehovah in the Old Testament. Jesus is Immanuel – God with us. Romans 9:5 refers to Jesus as God. Jesus is also called Lord: verses in the Old Testament that are attributed to the Lord are attributed to Him in the New Testament. When Saul had His miraculous encounter on the road to Damascus, he immediately recognized that the person speaking to him, Jesus, was the Lord, Yahweh of the Old Testament who alone spoke to people from heaven.
Also, Jesus demonstrates the qualities of God: omnipotence, omnipresence, omniscience, eternality and immutability. He is sovereign: He is the King of kings and the Lord of lords. He will rule forever; His throne is an everlasting throne. History has shown that no earthly government has lasted indefinitely. There have been various earthly kingdoms and rulers – Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Medes and Persians, Greece, Rome, Pharaoh, Sennacherib, Nebuchadnezzar, Darius, Alexander, Caesar, Napoleon, Hitler and others, but all of their kingdoms have been destroyed. However, Jesus’ kingdom will be established. His kingdom will be a kingdom of righteousness. There will be no sin, sickness, corruption, death, nor devils in this kingdom. There will be life, joy, peace, perfection. As God, Jesus is superior to angels and He is worthy of worship.
Savior, Redeemer, Deliverer
Jesus Christ died to pay the penalty for sin. The Bible makes the following truths clear. All have sinned; man is born in sin and chooses to sin. Sin separated and continues to separate man from God. God is a holy God and we cannot enter into His presence in a sinful condition. Sin will take people to hell, which is eternal separation from God in a place of perpetual torment. Further, good works cannot save me: all of my righteousness is as filthy rags. I can never be good enough in and of myself to approach God. We were enslaved and needed to be liberated since we lacked the capacity to free ourselves. Jesus paid the price; He was the one who died at Calvary. It is through His sacrificial death that humanity can be reconciled to God. Scripture says of believers that we are bought with a price, we are no longer our own.
The blood of Jesus Christ does not only save me, but it continues to wash me of all sin. David, in the Old Testament, knew nothing of the blood of Jesus Christ, but when he committed adultery with Bathsheba and was convicted through the ministry of Nathan the prophet, he repented sincerely. Psalm 51 is a beautiful psalm of repentance. We are under the new covenant and the Bible tells us that if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9). It is possible for believers to slip into sin for several reasons: we can be deceived; that’s the spirit of our age, and believers are not immune from deception. We can make mistakes; perhaps we were in an emotionally vulnerable place and succumbed to the influence of the enemy. We can fall short for whatever reason. The great thing to know is that while God does not excuse our sin, He does forgive it when we come to Him in sincere repentance.
Jesus is able to deliver from sickness and disease, various bondages and strongholds. Jesus healed people of leprosy, paralysis, fever, demon possession; He resurrected the dead; He healed a woman of a bleeding disorder, which she had for several years. Jesus is able to deliver you from anything that paralyzes the call of God in your life, that prevents you from being everything that He has called you to be. He can deliver you from drugs, sex, pornography, lying, gossip, greed, pride, rebellion, and disobedience. This is just a representative list, but know that whatever is afflicting you, Jesus has the capacity to deliver you. Don’t be deceived by the devil. Whom the Son sets free is free indeed. The Word declares that you will know the truth and that the truth will set you free. Be free in Jesus’ name!
Isaiah got a vision of God. The Bible records that in the year that King Uzziah died, I [Isaiah] saw the Lord seated on a throne, high and exalted, and the train of his robe filled the temple. [The seraphs cried] “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory.” That vision had a tremendous effect on the prophet. He declared, “Woe is me! I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the LORD Almighty.” The second effect was that he made himself available for God’s purpose saying, “Here am I. Send me!”
A vision of Jesus will affect your worship. When you have a vision of the Savior, you will worship with passion; you will worship in spirit and in truth. As part of your worship, you will give liberally and generously to God’s work. You will also pray for God’s kingdom and will to be done. A vision of Jesus will affect your service: you will be faithful and committed to the work of the kingdom and to the local church that God has made you a part of. A vision of Jesus will affect your witness. You will become His witnesses, sharing the good news locally, regionally and internationally. Have you seen Jesus? Have you really encountered Jesus?