Who was Jesus? Is He just a name to you? Was He an actual person or are accounts of Him only myths or fanciful tales? Was He just a great teacher? An ordinary human being? Or don't you know what you believe?
Perhaps you think that what you believe about Jesus really doesn't make any difference as long as you're sincere. But what you believe about this controversial figure is the most important consideration of your entire life.
We might even say, it's a matter of life and deathJesus once asked His followers who they thought He was. One of them, Simon Peter, answered, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God." Jesus praised Peter for his understanding. "Blessed are you, Simon, son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by man, but by My Father in heaven." (Matt. 16:16, 17)
What would you have answered if you had been there with Peter?
We don't have to wonder who Jesus was or how we're supposed to feel about Him because the Bible very clearly tells us everything we need to know to come to a right conclusion.
The Scripture: John 3:16
"For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life."
1. This scripture tells us that God gave His one and only ____________________.
Does the idea that God would make such a sacrifice surprise you? Have you ever seriously considered the fact that the person we call Jesus was actually God's Son?
2. What was God's purpose in doing this?
For as long as man has lived, there have always been many who would have given everything they had to possess eternal life, when the only way we can receive it was always available.
3. What must we do?
Coming to earth was a great sacrifice for Jesus. To understand why, we need to know who Jesus was before He was born on earth.
The Scripture: John 1:1-2
"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through Him all things were made; without Him nothing was made that has been made."
The Bible gives us many different names for Jesus, and John, who wrote this verse, calls Him the Word.
4. This scripture tells us that "through Him _________ things were _____________."
This is a very startling idea to accept. But the Bible clearly tells us that it is Jesus who created everything.
The Scripture: Hebrews 1:3
"The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of His being, sustaining all things by His powerful Word."
Jesus is also called the Son or the Son of God.
5. What else does the Son (Jesus) do?
Yes, Jesus not only created all things, He also holds all things together. Perhaps you're beginning to wonder: if Jesus is the Son of God and created everything - why did He come to earth?
You see, when God created the earth, it was perfect. But God didn't create perfect people, and very soon the first people He created, Adam and Eve, began to sin. They stopped believing what God told them and they became disobedient.
After they had sinned, the world and the people in it kept getting worse and worse and more and more sinful, and, for the most part, growing further and further away from God. They were in a terrible state. Here, they were completely separated from God, and, even if they had wanted to, they had no way in themselves to return to a closeness with Him.
From time to time, special people called prophets would tell about a time in the future when God was going to send someone to save them from their sins and show them the way back to God.
The Scripture: Isaiah 9:6.
"For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And He will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace."
Some of the prophecy was very specific.
The Scripture: Isaiah 7:14
"The Lord Himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call Him Immanuel (God with us)."
6. What was the sign God would give?
This important event took place many years later in Bethlehem, an unimportant town in Israel.
The Scripture: Matthew 1:18, 20, 21
"This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about. His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit...An angel of the Lord appeared to him (Joseph) in a dream and said, 'Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give Him the name Jesus, because He will save His people from their sins.'"
7. How did the angel say Jesus had been conceived?
8. What were Mary and Joseph to call the baby?
9. What does the name mean?
Although Jesus was God, who had created the whole earth, He came to earth and was born in a dirty manger. For a long time, no one knew who Jesus was. He grew up and lived quietly with His family until He was 30 years old. Then He began His public ministry.
The Scripture: Luke 3:21, 22
"When all the people were being baptized, Jesus was baptized too. And as He was praying, heaven was opened and the Holy Spirit descended on Him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven: 'You are My Son, whom I love; with You I am well pleased.'"
10. What did God say to Jesus when He was baptized?
11. What else happened?
While He lived on earth as a man, Jesus taught people about God, and He did many good things and performed miracles.
The Scripture: Luke 4:40, 41
"When the sun was setting, the people brought to Jesus all who had various kinds of sickness, and laying his hands on each one, he healed them. Moreover, demons came out of many people, shouting, 'You are the Son of God!'"
12. What were some of the miracles Jesus did?
Throughout His life on earth Jesus continued to do many miracles: Not only did He heal people and cast out demons, but He fed multitudes of people with just a young boy's lunch. He walked on water and He calmed the sea. He raised people from the dead and He knew what people were thinking. He did all these things because He had compassion for people and to prove that He was really who He said He was - the Son of God. But He always remembered that He had been sent to do a much more important job.
The Scripture: Luke 4:42, 43
"At daybreak Jesus went out to a solitary place. The people were looking for Him and when they came to where He was, they tried to keep Him from leaving them. But He said, 'I must preach the good news of the kingdom of God to the other towns also, because that is why I was sent!'"
13. Why did Jesus say He had been sent?
The good news that Jesus preached was that the Kingdom of God was at hand, and that man could be reconciled to God through repentance and by believing in His Son, Jesus.
Although Jesus went about doing good, teaching about a loving God who wanted to be a Father to us, and how forgiveness of sin is available to everyone, most people preferred to continue in their old way of life. In the end, even Jesus' closest followers deserted Him, and He died a painful death on a cross. For three days it looked as if Jesus' entire life had been in vain. Then on the third day, when some of Jesus' followers went to His tomb, they found the huge stone that had sealed it, rolled away, and two angels appeared.
The Scripture: Luke 24:5-7
"Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; He has risen! Remember how He told you, while He was still with you in Galilee: 'The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.'"
14. What had happened to Jesus?
Yes, Jesus had died, but God had also raised Him from the dead!
The Scripture: Ephesians 1:20-22
"[God] raised him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every title that can be given, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. And God placed all things under His feet and appointed Him to be head over everything for the church."
15. Where is Jesus today?
16. What is His position?
The Scripture: II Timothy 1:10
"Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel."
17. What else has Jesus done?
The Scripture: Romans 8:34
"Christ Jesus, who died - more than that, Who was raised to life - is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us."
18. What is Jesus doing for us today?
What we must do?
The Scripture: Acts 4:12
"Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved."
19. What is the only name by which we can be saved and have eternal life?
The Scripture: Acts 2:38
"Peter [said] 'Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ so that your sins may be forgiven!'"
20. How can we be saved and have our sins forgiven?
Wouldn’t you like to accept Jesus and His free gift of salvation? If you would, repeat this prayer:
I am sorry for all my sins. I believe You are the Son of God, and that when You died on the cross, You died for those sins. I believe, too, that God raised You from the dead, and You are in heaven with Him today. Thank You for saving me.
- To give eternal life
- Believe in God's Son.
- all, made
- He sustains all things by His Word.
- A virgin would give birth to a son.
- By the Holy Spirit
- He will save his people from their sins.
- "You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased."
- Heaven opened and the Holy Spirit descended on Jesus in bodily form like a dove.
- He healed people and cast demons out of them.
- To preach the good news
- He had risen from the dead.
- Seated at God's right hand
- He is above every rule and authority, power, dominion, title; everything is under his feet, and He is head over everything for the church.
- Destroyed death
- Interceding for us
- Jesus Christ
- Repent and be baptized in the name of Jesus.
All scripture quotations in this publication are from the Holy Bible, New International version
(unless otherwise indicated)
Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, New International Bible Society
© 1985 by JoAnne Sekowsky