Summary: Sermon about Jesus & who He is & His characteristics
TEXT: Matthew 16:13-16
“Who Is He?”
If you were to go downtown & stop everyone you saw to ask them this question, you would get quite a variety of answers. Some would say He was a great & profound teacher. Some would say that He was a prophet of God. Some would say that He was a lunatic & liar. Some would say that He is a figment of our imagination. He’s a good idea, but He never actually walked on this earth. It seems that you can’t get people to agree on who or what He was.
And sometimes, not everyone in the churches agree on who He really was. “Well, He saved me, but that’s pretty much it. I wouldn’t say that I’m very faithful to reading or praying. I’m thankful that He saved me & He lets me live my own life without interference.” Or a more popular opinion in the church: “When I sin, I ask for forgiveness and I’m pretty sure He hears me. When I’m sick, I pray for healing. When I’m poor, I pray for money. That’s about the extent of my prayer life. I might read a scripture of two about whatever I’m going through.”
The sad fact of the matter is that many people who go to church today, know about God, but they don’t know who He really is. You may know some of His titles, “King of Kings & Lord of Lords,” but some people have never experience what that truly means. They have no idea why that is significant to us in the here & now. I want to tell you about 4 descriptions of who He is.
1. Who is He? He is the Loving Father.
I have been teaching a series entitled, “Reflections of a Father.” In this series I have been sharing some things I have learned being a new father and the correlation they have with our Heavenly Father. My daughter is such a wonderful blessing & she has taught me many truths about fatherhood. (Get your own child from audience.)
You should know that I love you. As one of your pastors, I care about you, I feed you from the Word, I visit when you’re in the hospital, I study, I counsel, I fast, I pray… all for you. So it is an understatement when I say that I love all of you. But I want to tell you something that I hope doesn’t offend you. (Show daughter’s hands)
I wouldn’t put a nail through the hand of my one & only child for you. I don’t think I could love you enough to sacrifice my only child to save you. Like my dad has said, my daughter hasn’t done a single thing to deserve or earn my love. She just is. She carries my name. And she is my child. I wouldn’t allow her back to be whipped so that her stripes would heal you. But thank God, that He is much more of a Loving Father than I. There is no question that the Father loved His Son Jesus. But He knew that through the sacrifice of His Son, He would bring all of His children back into the family of God.
2. Who is He? He is the Lamb of God.
Hundreds of years before it would ever happen, the Prophet Isaiah would be inspired to write one of the most powerful Messianic prophecies recorded in the Bible.
TEXT: Isaiah 53:2-10 & last line of v.12 He prays for the sinners
He was a man of sorrows. “A man with an experience is never at the mercy of a man with an argument.” No one can say that Jesus doesn’t know what they’re going through. You can’t say that Jesus couldn’t understand. He knows stress; He knows pain; He knows heartache; He knows betrayal; He knows anguish.
There were times during my wife’s pregnancy that were especially hard on her. We have gone through some things that made the earth stand still for us. One day, our Christian doctor told us that my wife would probably lose this baby & there were risks that she might never conceive again. We left his office and stood in the hallway. I saw her face change as she began to weep. I held her & I reminded her that the life inside her was God’s responsibility to maintain. There was nothing we could do to add one day to my unborn daughter’s life. And then something strange happened. I was consoling her, but I was overwhelmed with sorrow. And I began to weep like I have never wept in my life. We stood there & prayed over this little life. “By your stripes, we are healed,” we would quote.
Jesus knows what we face and He knows how it feels. When his best friend died, Jesus turned away from the crowd & wept. When He looked out over Jerusalem & the lost multitudes of people, we wept.