Jesus the Christ
Our daily Bible reading this year is entirely centered on the life and ministry of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. The daily readings are helpful reminders of who Jesus is and how He conducted Himself while on this earth. So far this year, we have read through His eternal nature, His birth, His visit to Jerusalem at twelve years old, His baptism, His temptations in the wilderness, and the beginning of His ministry and the first sign in Cana of Galilee. We have already been reminded by so many of these events in the early life of Jesus that He was much more than a normal child and Jew. Jesus would ultimately become our Lord and Savior.
Jesus is the Suffering Christ
Jesus was sent by our heavenly Father to accomplish His will. As John wrote – “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life” (John 3:16). When Jesus was twelve years old and lost in Jerusalem, where did Joseph and Mary find Him? Jesus was in the temple, sitting in the midst of the teachers, both listening to them and asking them questions. When Jesus was asked by Mary, “Son, why have You treated us this way?” Jesus’ responded, “Why is it that you were looking for Me? Did you not know that I had to be in My Father’s house?” (Luke 2:46-49). Jesus came to earth understanding His purpose of life. which is His death on the cross.
The apostle Peter would later write these words concerning the life of Jesus –
18 For Christ also died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God, having been put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the spirit; (1 Peter 3:18; emphasis mine, bcj).
Jesus came to this earth to seek and to save the lost (Luke 19:10). The only way for mankind to ever be saved was through His death, burial, and resurrection. Jesus endured the suffering and shame of the cross, so that by His death we could be made alive in Him.
Jesus is the Sinless Christ
Our world has existed under the influence of the father of lies, Satan, since the very beginning of sin. The consequences of this one sin continues to be felt in every aspect of our daily lives. The pain and suffering introduced into God’s perfect creation is an exact demonstration of how sin corrupts, destroys, and brings death upon all who yield to it! Jesus was not born in some alternate-universe free of temptation and evil, but rather He was born on this earth surrounded by the same temptations as each of one of us. The Hebrew writer wrote – “15 For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin” (Hebrews 4:15). The final phrase of this verse is key to understanding the greatness of Jesus’ life on this earth – “yet without sin.” Jesus endured the temptations of this life and rose above them all. He maintained His purity, sinlessness, and absolute perfection! Jesus went to the cross, not in guilt for His own sin, but rather to suffer the wrath of God for our sins. Praise be to God for such a selfless and sinless Christ!
Jesus is the Submissive Christ
In those final moments of Jesus’ life, we should be moved by His complete self-sacrifice and submission to the Father. Jesus had the power to call down “twelve legions of angels,” but His obedience to the Father’s will was perfect to the very end (Matthew 26:53)! Jesus became the Lamb of God, which has come to take away the sins of the world (John 1:29). The prophet Isaiah wrote –
7 He was oppressed and He was afflicted, Yet He did not open His mouth; Like a lamb that is led to slaughter, And like a sheep that is silent before its shearers, So He did not open His mouth (Isaiah 53:7).
Jesus did not open His mouth, but rather He endured the cross (Hebrews 12:2). Jesus “humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross” (Philippians 2:8).
When we begin to survey our lives and evaluate the choices we make on a day-to-day basis – Do we find ourselves becoming more like Jesus or drifting further away from Him? These three attributes of Jesus should motivate us in our daily walk as Christians. The cost of our salvation is beyond our comprehension; therefore, do not delay your obedience to the Lord’s commands and be saved from your sins! May Jesus our Lord and Savior be honored by our submission, obedience, and lifelong pursuit in becoming more like Him!
*The idea of this article was taken directly from the invitation of Samuel Branham - Singing River church of Christ - January 31, 2024.