Summary: This message looks at the pre-incarnate Christ.
Jesus in Creation - Finding Jesus in the Old Testament - Part 1
Intro Story: When I was young believer, I wasn’t really clear on who Jesus is. I had a sense that he was divine, that He had the power to forgive sins, and I believed that he had given his life for me, taken away my sins in order to make it possible for me to have a relationship with God.
At the beginning, beyond that, I didn’t know much more than that.
And I also learned fairly early on that people had different views on who Jesus is.
I went to a particular mainstream church where the preacher referred to Jesus as someone who may have been God, may not have been God. It didn’t really matter.
That both struck me odd that important detail like that can strike anyone, let alone a pastor, as a matter of opinion; and it didn’t line up with what I was reading in Scripture.
So this inspired me to look more deeply into the Bible to learn more about Jesus.
And as I gained some clarity from the Word of God about Jesus, it began to impact my experience of worship. I would spend longer in worship, I would experience God in a fuller way.
The result was a big change in how I lived day to day. Worshipping God began to impact my outlook on life.
I started to feel more positive, more hopeful, more confident and more joyful. I even became more brave, stepping out into new situations and unknown territory.
It’s what led to me coming to the mission 33 years ago to explore what mission life was about.
Intro to Series: Today we begin a 4 week series on Jesus in the Old Testament or Hebrew Bible.
In this short series we will look at Jesus in Creation, Jesus in the Law, Jesus Incognito and Jesus in prophecy.
You might wonder about what we mean by Jesus in the OT.
We are use to Jesus in the time of the gospels. His incarnation, His parables, the miracles, the interactions with the disciples.
If we’ve been around church much or done much Bible reading, we know about the betrayal of Jesus, His suffering and death on the cross, followed by His resurrection.
But what about before His incarnation.
My hope is that as we explore these themes together, we will grow in our understanding and appreciation of Who Jesus is in His fullness, and that this will lead all of us to an even greater commitment to love and worship God with all our being.
Knowing Jesus CHANGES us, and the more we know Him and know the more our lives are changed.
So today we look at Jesus in Creation. Before we do that let’s look at some things in the gospels narratives about Jesus and His relationship with creation.
We see hints in the Gospels of the authority of Jesus over creation.
Jesus calling the storm, Jesus enabling Peter to walk on the water, Jesus impacting human creation: healing the sick, raising the dead.
We see Jesus talking to the religious leaders of His day. He talked to them about their hypocrisy, and He talked to them about Himself.
And when He talked about Himself, He made what amounted to a much bolder claim then saying “I am divine“.
We see Jesus using for himself, the name that God the father gave Moses on the occasion of the burning bush, “I am”. He tells the Pharisees in John chapter 8, “Before Abraham was, I am”.
We see Jesus in the Gospel’s talking about him being one with the father.
In case we ourselves miss the reference, we see in the response of the religious leaders around him a lot of anger because to them, who know what he is saying, he is explicitly claiming to be equal with God.
So there’s hints in the New Testament about Jesus, both in His words and in His actions. He’s connected to creation, all of creation in a very special way.
But what part did Jesus have in Creation? Before the incarnation, what was Jesus doing?
Colossians 1 gives us some good insights, and it talks about Who Jesus is and what He has always been:
The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.” ??Colossians? ?1:15-20? ?NIV??