THE DIVINITY & HUMANITY OF JESUS CHRIST Hebrews 1:1-10 ( ), John 10:27-33 ( ), John 5:22-23, John 4:5-7, John 11:32-35, & Hebrews 4:15.
THE LIFE & MIRACLES OF JESUS CHRIST Matthew 1:20-21 ( ), Luke 8:22-56 ( ), Mark 6:32-44 ( ), & Luke 12:13-21.
THE DEATH OF JESUS CHRIST Luke 18:31-34, Matthew 26:14-16, John 13:21-30, & Mark 15:16-39.
THE RESURRECTION OF JESUS CHRIST Matthew 27:57-66, Luke 23:55-24:9, Luke 24:36-48, & I Corinthians 15:4-8 ( ).
WHAT IS THE MEANING OF IT ALL? I Peter 3:18 ( ), Romans 5:6-8
( ), Acts 10:43 ( ),
& Philippians 2:8-11.
INTRODUCTION Having looked at the nature of sin, we will now spend time looking at the remedy which God has ordained to deal with the problem of sin. Just as only those who are sick will seek the help of a physician, only those who through the work of God in their hearts realize their desperate condition before God because of their sin will truly and earnestly seek the remedy which God has prescribed.
1. God's remedy is found only in the Person of Jesus Christ.
The Bible teaches that when Jesus came to earth, He was both fully
God and fully man at the same time. It will help us in understanding
Jesus to look at both of these qualities within Him. The Book
of Hebrews was written to demonstrate that Jesus was and is superior
to the angels, Moses, the high priests, and that God's new covenant
with man is superior to His old covenant with the Jews. Hebrews
chapter 1 explains how Jesus is superior to the angels of God.
Here the writer shows the superiority of Jesus Christ by quoting
from Old Testament prophecies about the Messiah which show that
the Messiah (or Christ) was indeed to be God. Jesus had claimed
that He was the Jewish Messiah.
Read Hebrews 1:1-10. How has God spoken to us in these last days (vs. 2)? What else does verse 2 tell us about the Son? How does the writer compare Jesus to God in verse 3? How does the writer compare Jesus to the angels in verses 4-5? What does the Old Testament say the angels shall do before the Son (vs. 6)? What does it say about the Son in verse 8? By what name or title is the Son called or addressed in verse 8?
In John 10 Jesus is seen talking to a group of Jews about eternal life and His relationship to His Father. What does Jesus tell these Jews in verse 30? What do the Jews do upon hearing this (vs. 31)? What reason do they give for trying to kill Jesus (vs.33)?
In John 5:22-23 Jesus is also talking to a group of Jews about Himself and the Father. What task has the Father given to the Son (vs. 22)? Why has the Father done this (vs. 23)? According to what Jesus says, if a person does not honor Jesus, can that person truly honor God (vs. 23)?
As we have just seen, the Bible clearly teaches that Jesus Christ is God. As God, Jesus voluntarily chose to become a man. How does John 4:6-7 demonstrate the humanity of Jesus?
In the 11th chapter of John, Jesus has been asked by some close friends to come and help their brother. Jesus has arrived to help, finding that the brother has already died (Jesus knew that he had died before they arrived). Read verses 32-35. What is Jesus' response to the tragic scene He finds (vs. 35)?
Hebrews 4:15 tells us another very important fact about the humanity of Jesus. Although tempted to sin as we all are, did Jesus ever yield to that temptation and commit sin?
2. The events recorded about the life of Jesus happened over
a three-year period (with the exception of the birth of Christ
and the events surrounding it). During that three-year period,
Jesus taught in many cities, performed numerous miracles, and
told people how they could come to know God. Let's spend some
time looking at the life and miracles of Jesus Christ. In Matthew
1:21 an angel from God is telling Joseph, the step-father of Jesus,
about Jesus' coming birth. What does the angel tell Joseph about
the purpose for which Jesus will be born?
In Luke 8 we see the amazing power of God demonstrated by Jesus in several types of miracles. In verses 22-25 how does Jesus demonstrate God's power? How does Jesus stop the storm (vs. 24)? How do the disciples react to this (vs. 25)? In verses 27-28 Jesus is confronted by a man who is possessed with many demons or evil spirits. How many demons are there in the man (vs. 30)? What happens to the demons when they are confronted with the power of Jesus Christ (vs. 30-33)? What does Jesus instruct the man to do in verse 39? While an official of the synagogue (or Jewish place of worship) is asking Jesus to come and heal his daughter, a woman approaches Jesus secretly (vs. 43-48). What is wrong with the woman (vs. 43)? What does she do (vs. 44)? What is the result (vs. 44)? After healing the woman, Jesus proceeds to the home of Jairus, the offical of the synagogue. By now Jairus' daughter has died. When Jesus tells the group of people in the house to stop crying because the girl is not dead, how do they respond (vs. 52-53)? What happens to the girl when Jesus commands her to rise up (vs. 54-55)?
In the verses we have just looked at in Luke, we saw God's power demonstrated through Jesus over the forces of nature (in calming a storm), evil spirits (in casting them out), sickness (in healing it), and even death (in restoring life to the dead). We now want to look at another great miracle of Jesus. Turn to Mark 6:32-44. Jesus and His disciples have departed to go to a desolate place for some rest. What do the people who see them leave do (vs. 33)? When Jesus sees them, how does His heart respond to them and what does He do for them (vs. 34)? Since it is so late, what plan do the disciples have for the multitudes (vs. 35-36)? How much food do the disciples find to feed the large group (vs. 38)? What happens next (vs. 39-42)? How many people are fed by the multiplication of the loaves of bread and fish (vs. 44)?
In addition to doing many miracles, Jesus often taught people about the Kingdom of God and the meaning of life. Jesus taught many times about the importance of living our lives today with eternity in mind. He called on people to examine their own lives and priorities. Luke 12:13-21 records one of those times. Turn to Luke 12. What does Jesus warn the crowd about in verse 15? Why does He say that this is important (vs. 15)? Jesus then proceeds to tell a story about a farmer. What has happened to the farmer (vs. 16)? What does the farmer decide to do about it (vs. 17-18)? What is the attitude of the farmer (vs. 19)? What is the point of this story (vs 20-21)? What does Jesus consider more important than possessions (vs. 21)? Which is more important to you--God or your possessions?
3. Jesus Christ was the only person who has ever lived who
was born to die. The primary reason Jesus was born into the world
was to die. He knew this and tried to prepare His disciples for
His death ahead of time. In Luke 18:31-34 Jesus tells His disciples
about what is going to happen. How does Jesus describe what will
happen to Him (vs. 31-33)? How do His disciples react to this
Matthew tells us how one of Jesus' own disciples plotted to betray Him. Look at Matthew 26:14-16. To whom does Judas go (vs. 14)? What is the price Judas receives for his actions (vs. 15)? After receiving the money from the chief priests, what does Judas begin to do (vs. 16)?
The scene now changes to the night before Jesus' death. He is celebrating the Passover meal with His twelve disciples. John tells us about it in John 13:21-30. What shocking news does Jesus reveal to the disciples (vs. 21)? Who does Jesus indicate privately to John will be the traitor (vs. 26)? What instructions does Jesus give to Judas (vs. 27)? Why do the disciples think Judas is leaving (vs. 29)?
All the gospel writers record the death of Jesus. Let's look at Mark's account of it in Mark 15:16-39. How did the soldiers treat Jesus after He was arrested (vs. 16-20)? Who else was condemned to die with Jesus (vs. 27)? How did some of those who were watching Jesus die treat Him (vs. 29-32)? What happened at the ninth hour (or 3:00 pm) according to verses 33-37? A Centurion was standing right in front of Jesus when he died. What conclusion did he come to (vs. 39)?
4. Jesus had predicted His own death, but He predicted something
much more remarkable than that. He predicted that three days after
His death He would come to life again. All the gospel writers
tell about this event called the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
We will look at the account that Matthew gives us in his gospel
in Matthew 27:57-66. Here Matthew tells us about the events following
Jesus' death. Who came to Pilate to ask for the body of Jesus
(vs. 57-58)? What did they do with His body (vs. 59-60)? What
do the chief priests and Pharisees decide to do (vs. 62-66)? Why?
The women from Galilee watch as Joseph and Nicodemus bury the body of Jesus. In Luke 23:55-24:9 we learn what happens next. After watching Jesus' burial, what do the women do (vs. 55-24:1)? What do they find when they get to the tomb (vs. 6-7)? Who do the women tell these things to (vs. 9)?
Jesus first appears to Mary of Magdala after He comes alive from the dead. Then He appears to two disciples on the road to Emmaus. The disciples heading to Emmaus return immediately to Jerusalem to tell the other disciples that Jesus is alive. In Luke 24:36-48 Jesus appears to His disciples as a group for the first time since His resurrection from the dead. When Jesus appears to them what do they think (vs. 37)? What does Jesus ask them to do to show that it really is He (vs. 39)? How do they react (vs. 41)? What does Jesus instruct them to do (vs. 46-47)?
I Corinthians 15:4-8 records a list of those who saw Jesus alive after He had died. How many people are mentioned in these verses as having seen Jesus alive after He died (vs. 6)? In a modern court of law, if a person was able to call 500 witnesses who all testified unwaveringly about the same event, do you think a jury would believe them?
5. To just understand the basic facts about the life, death,
and resurrection of Jesus Christ, even though firmly believed,
falls far short of the Father's intention in sending Jesus (God
the Son) to earth. God commands each person to go beyond the facts
and not only understand why Jesus came and believe it, but also
to then willingly surrender one's life and all that one has and
is to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. First, we need to understand
why Jesus' death is so important.
Turn to I Peter 3:18. What does this verse tell us about the reason for Jesus' death? What do you think the phrase "the just for the unjust" means? Why does this verse say that Jesus' death was necessary?
Mental or intellectual agreement with the facts about why Jesus died is, however, not enough to save anyone. Genuine faith goes far beyond just agreeing with a set of facts. Romans 5:6-8 helps us to understand more about our own condition and God's mercy to those who genuinely commit their lives to following Christ. What does verse 6 indicate about our ability to save ourselves apart from Christ? For whom did Christ die (vs. 6)? Do you sincerely believe that you are "ungodly", or do you see yourself differently? Only a proper self-evaluation related to sin (seeing sin through God's eyes for its wickedness and vileness and as utter rebellion against God) can bring a person to God in true repentance. How has God shown His love and mercy to men in spite of our dreadful condition before Him (vs. 8)?
Acts 10:43 tells us of the effect of Christ's death toward those who totally commit their lives to following Him. What does the one who makes that commitment receive?
Philippians 2:8-11 brings all of this into focus. It is not that God desires for people to just agree mentally with the facts presented about Jesus in the Scriptures, as important as that might be. God demands far more than that. What do these verses tell us that God wishes for all to do (vs 10-11)? What does the word "Lord" mean to you?
The word "Lord" means ruler or master. When someone is lord over you, he has authority over your life to do with it whatever pleases him. The lord most people have over their lives is themselves. Jesus Christ demands that He be recognized as sovereign Lord over all of your life. To do that we must first be enlightened by the Holy Spirit about our dreadful state of sin and rebellion against God. If a person is unwilling to accept the facts about Jesus' death on their behalf or to bow before the Lordship of Jesus Christ over their life, that person cannot receive forgiveness of sins. The next study deals in greater depth with the issue of Lordship and genuine belief. Please continue on to the study entitled "Jesus Calls for Commitment: What is Genuine Faith?"
Copyright © 1990 by William C. Nichols.
Distributed by International Outreach, Inc., PO Box 1286, Ames, Iowa 50010