Summary: Different people have different ideas of who Jesus is. To some they do not mind including Him as one of the gods and to others He is one of the prophets...but what does the Bible say who Jesus is?
A Sunday school child was busy doing something, while everyone else was paying attention to the teacher. She had a piece of paper and some crayons, and was doing some art work.
The Sunday school teacher being observant asked the child, “Sweetheart, what are you doing?”
The girl, without even looking up said, “I am drawing a picture of god.”
And the Sunday school teacher having the responsibility of being concerned about this girl’s theology said, “Sweety, nobody really knows what God looks like!”
And the girl said, “They will when I am finished!”
Different people have different ideas of what God is like and what Jesus is like. Most would agree that in general the Hindus think of Jesus in a particular way. Most have a deep and profound respect for Him, and will add Him to the long and crowded list of god-man incarnations. So they can have the picture of their favored gods like that of finances or health or safety, and then they can have the picture of Jesus also. Why not? It does not hurt.
For the Muslims, they look at Jesus with great respect and honor; one of the great 5 prophets of human history, which includes Muhammad and Jesus, is just one in that list.
It seems to me actually that many Hindus and Muslims show more deeper and profound respect to Jesus than some Christian theologians.
Brian Bill put it this way: “Instead of calling people to faith, repentance and submission to the Supremacy of Christ, many of us (church people) tell people that Jesus want to give them a happy marriage or a stress-free life. Well, Jesus would certainly change our lives and our marriages and our stress levels when we bow down to His pre-eminence.”
We must move away from “What can Jesus do for me?” to “Am I living in the light of His lordship?” We do not simply ADD Jesus to our lives; we adore Him with our lives through obedience.
It seems that in the days of Paul many people had similar views of Jesus.
• To the Romans Jesus was a rebel, accused of sedition.
• To the Greeks, the cross of Jesus was foolishness.
• To the Jews, the cross of Jesus was a stumbling block.
• To the Gnostics and the Platonists, Jesus was a demi-god, not born of mortal flesh, because flesh is evil.
The Bible has a different perspective when attempting to answering the question, “Who is Jesus?” That is our big question this morning. Last week we answered the question, “Who are we?” We are sinners saved by the grace of God in Christ Jesus, heirs of salvation, the children of God by adoption.
Let us read the great hymn of faith now – READ Colossians 1:15-20
1. Jesus is the image of the invisible God.
The word image is – icon. In the Roman world, if you had an identity document, it would have the section called the icon. It was a section about you that was unique.
So when we say Jesus is the image of the invisible God, we are saying that it is like a stamp. Like Caesar’s seal would have his image on it. You take the wax and the seal and stick it on there. And you will have an image that is identical to the image on the seal. Jesus is the image of God. He is the exact representation of God – Col.2:9. He is the fullness of the Presence of God.
2. He is the first born.
The Jehovah’s Witnesses take this verse to teach that Jesus was a created being. But the term, “first born” here is Prototocos, which means first child. David in the OT is referred to as the firstborn. He is actually the 8th child in the family, the youngest one. He is called the firstborn, not because he is the oldest, but because he was the pre-eminent son, the one who became king; the inheritor of the inheritance.
So the first born means, the one who receives the inheritance from God. He is the firstborn of all creation, the One who receives the inheritance of all creation.
3. He is the Creator
John 1:1-4 says, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men.”
4. He is before all things
When Jesus was having a dispute with a group of Jews, Jesus said, “Abraham rejoiced to see this day.” And someone in the audience did not like Him saying that. They said, “You are not even 50 years old and you were before Abraham?” And Jesus said, “Before Abraham was, I AM.”