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Summary: This sermon explores the Apostle Paul's understanding of the person of Jesus Christ

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INTRODUCTION

* Paul’s life before Christ and after Christ

- from persecuting the church to planting churches

- from arresting Christians physically to arresting unbelievers spiritually

- from hindering the work of Christ to hindering the work of Satan

- from being openly opposed to Christ to being openly obsessed with Christ

* What Paul began to do after his conversion: preach about Jesus Christ

* His first recorded sermon: Acts 13:13-41

* From his first sermon, we get an idea of Paul’s theology about Jesus Christ

* How did Paul view Jesus?

1. Jesus is the culmination of history (v. 16-23)

* The purpose of history is directly tied to the purpose of God

* The purpose of God is to redeem fallen man and to reclaim what is his; to form the eternal kingdom of God

* Text: Paul presents a concise historical narrative of God’s plan and shows that what God did in the past was done in preparation of the arrival of Jesus Christ

* Now, today, the events that will become history point to the culmination of Christ which will occur at his second coming

* What does Jesus as the culmination of history teach us about life today?

1) Because Christ is the culmination of history, we can rest in the sovereignty of God: God is the source of all creation and all things come from him and depend upon him

2) Because Christ is the culmination of history, we can experience the blessings of God: God protected his people through their history and was longsuffering toward them

3) Because Christ is the culmination of history, we can be a part of the family of God

4) Because Christ is the culmination of history, our future is secure

2. Jesus is the fulfillment of prophecy (v. 23-37)

* Paul’s logic...

- Verse 23: Jesus would be David’s offspring = compare Jer. 23:5 with Matt. 1:1

- Verse 24-25: John the Baptist would prepare the way for Christ = compare Isa. 40:3-5 with Luke 3:3-6

- Verses 26-28: The death of Christ was prophesied and fulfilled = compare Ps. 69:8-9 with John 1:11 // Isa. 53:7 with Mark 15:4-5 // Isa. 53:12 with Mark 15:27-28 // Ps. 22:7-8 with Matt. 27:39-44

- Verse 29: Burial prophesied = compare Isa. 53:9 with Matt. 27:57-60

- Verses 30-37: Resurrection prophesied = compare Psalm 2:7; 16:10 with Mark 16:6-7

* What Jesus as the fulfillment of prophecy means to us:

1) God and his word can be trusted (see Joshua 21:45)

2) No one else can redeem man other than Christ (see Acts 4:12)

3. Jesus is the Savior of sinners (v. 38-39)

* “therefore” = because Christ is the culmination of history and the fulfillment of prophecy, he is the Savior of sinners

* When we embrace Christ as Savior, we experience two dramatic events in our lives:

1) Spiritually, we are forgiven of our sins - v. 38 (see Jer. 31:34; Ps. 103:12)

2) Practically, we are freed from the burden of the law - v. 39

CONCLUSION

* Verses 40-41 = quotes Hab. 1:5 - a warning to those who might reject God’s offer of grace

* This is Jesus according to Paul. Who is Jesus to YOU?


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