Who is Jesus
By Jim Allen
The question ("Who is Jesus?") has been around for a long time, 20 centuries to be exact. Just about everyone will hear or ask about him at some point in their life. Unbelievers puzzle about Jesus and wonder if he will ever have a place their lives. Some unbelievers think not, even though speaking favorably about the Nazarene. And still others find no reason to honor him at all.
H.G. Wells (a well-known British author) said, "I am an historian, I am not a believer, but I must confess as a historian that this penniless preacher from Nazareth is irrevocably the very center of history. Jesus Christ is easily the most dominant figure in all history." (Source)Well said Mr. Wells! While H.G. was sincerely intrigued by the penniless preacher who became a dominate figure, a young lad from Liverpool was less than impressed.
John Lennon (a member of the Beatles) said, "Christianity will go. It will vanish and shrink. I needn't argue with that; I'm right and I will be proved right. We're more popular than Jesus now; I don't know which will go first, rock and roll or Christianity." (Source)Lennon and others of like-mindedness put Jesus aside as some Jewish rabbi who lived 2,000 years ago. For these naysayers, Jesus is nothing more than a legendary figure that left a global footprint in the form of a movement. They say the Rabbi is neither here nor there. They stand unyielding in believing the wind of time has blown away any trace of a divine footprint.
Of course, they are mistaken. They did not know Jesus nor did they learn of him. The question about Jesus' relevancy cannot so easily be dismissed. C.S. Lewis in his book Mere Christianity writes,
"You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up for fool, you can spit at him and kill him as a demon; or you can fall at his feet and call him Lord and God. But let us not come up with any patronizing nonsense about his being a great human teacher. He has not left that option open to us. He did not intend to." (Source)Chosen to follow and often confused, the apostles were men of modest means. Despite seeing the beauty and wonder and majesty of this man, they could not define him. They could not understand him. Nor could they see that one day they would be indwelt by him. (John 15:5; Acts 2:4)
The apostles got to know him as a person, and then as Lord and Savior. He was good and kind and gentle. He was holy. People saw him smile, laugh, perhaps even joke around. He especially loved children because they were innocent and trusting. People liked him. Kids adored him. They wanted to know him better. They wanted to be like him.
Who is this person that commands admiration and speaks comforting words to help the downtrodden find rest? Who is this person that touches and the blind see, the lame walk, and the dead are raised? Who is this person that speaks and darkness gives way to light and sorrow to joy and despair to hope?
Who is this person that knows all things? Who is able to mark the end from the beginning, read the hearts of men, and foresee the future from the present? Who is this person that came down from heaven to take on human form and speak words so powerful that souls are convicted of sin and judgment and righteousness? (John 1:14; 16:8)
The Bible says Jesus is more than just a rabbi and prophet responsible for a movement. He is more than a historical figure that could appear and disappear at will. The Apostle John was inspired to write that "all things" were made by him and without him nothing was made (John 1:3).
John goes on to say Jesus is the designer and builder of all things in the known universe. From the sea and land came living creatures of every sort, designed and fashioned for his holy purpose. From lifeless inorganic matter, Jesus called forth life from the dust of the earth and fashioned you and me. (Genesis 2:7)
Who is this person able to envision and create life, instructing it to multiply and divide and grow into wondrous beings and green things? What power of intellect imagined it all and by what wondrous contrivance did he bring all these things into being?
Beloved and adored by many, H.G. Wells and John Lennon are not known to have believed in the Nazarene. If this understanding is true, then they did not know Jesus transcended all they were or could ever hope to be. They did not know Jesus spoke mighty things and performed untold wonders and miracles that if written down would fill the libraries of the world (John 21:25).
In closing, any endeavor to write about this person named Jesus is just that, an endeavor. To learn about him would take forever. If eternity had an end, we would have just at eternity’s end completed reading the "foreword to Jesus" in a book bound with never-ending chapters of wonder and glory.
Who is Jesus? He is the never-ending story about the Great I AM (John 8:58).
Image Credit: Vasily Surikov; "Healing the man born blind by Jesus Christ"; 1888; Public Domain
Tags: Biblical-Truth | Jesus-Christ | Theological-Beliefs
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