Summary: The first is a series on the Person of Jesus
Who Is This?p.1
By Pastor Ralph Juthman
In 1 Kings 8:27 King Solomon asks, “Will God indeed dwell on earth?”
You have probably heard of the campaign to publicize the non existence of God. Organizations like the Humanist League are spending millions of dollars for ad space on city buses in Canada and the USA that contend, “There probably is no God, so relax and get on with you life.”
What is interesting is how non committal these groups are. The ads say, Probably” not Definitely. This is most likely because deep down, there is not a person who can say with 100%assurance that God does not exist.
What these people have not accepted is the fact that over 99% of people on this planet profess a belief in God in some shape or form. Everywhere, on this planet there are groups of people gathering in churches, synagogues, temples, forest and jungles to give worship to some professed deity.
What this shows is the universal desire to reach out and touch the unreachable. People innately want to touch God. But how can this happen? How can humans come into contact with the Divine?
This is where Christianity sets itself apart from every religion, faith group and cult. It is the only faith that proclaims with absolute certainty, that GOD HAS COME DOWN TO MAN> HE did this in the person of Jesus Christ.
From the opening section of the gospel, John addresses this question, “who is Jesus?” The first 18 vv., most often called the Prologue, contain a summary of John’s most reflective convictions about our Lord. In fact, many Bible Scholars believe that these verses comprised an early hymn, that the early Christians used to sing.
John records 7 names or titles that identify of Jesus
1. THE WORD ( 1-3, 14)
2. THE LIGHT (4-13; 8:12)
3. THE SON OF GOD (15-28, 49; MATT 16:16)
4. THE LAMB OF GOD (29-34) Good Friday
5. THE MESSIAH (35-42)
6. THE KING OF ISREAL (43-49; 12:15) Palm Sunday
7. THE SON OF MAN (50-51)
Over the next seven weeks we will study each of these individual titles of Jesus. Each of these are essential in understanding and answering the question, “WHO IS JESUS”
In verses 1-3, we find one of the most elevated (and complex) statements concerning Christ’s identity in all of Scripture.
1In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2He was with God in the beginning. 3Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.
John focuses upon the central fact of our Christian faith: Christianity is not a philosophy, it is about a Person, and that Person is fundamental to our faith. To remove Jesus from Christianity is like taking numbers out of math, the sun out of daylight. It is to strip Christianity of its most essential component.
While other world religions focus upon the teachings, ideas, philosophies of their founders and teachers, Christianity is about a personal relationship with a Person. The central theme of John’s message is found in 20:31,
But these are written that you may[a] believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.
That is why Jesus Christ is the most astonishing individual in human history. More books have been written, music composed, picturespainted, and drama performed about Jesus than any other person. Why?
Why did other great figures come and go? Why do others fade into the annals of history but Jesus Christ looms as large in modern society as he did 2000 years ago? Why is he the most powerful personality to ever appear on this planet? That is the question John answers in the prologue…Who is Jesus?
Jesus is a great historical figure and held by many to be the most inspirational leader the world has ever known. But is he more? The typical responses to the life and claims of Jesus Christ sounds something like this:
"Jesus Christ was a great man."
"Jesus Christ was a wonderful moral model."
"Jesus Christ was an enlightened religious teacher."
"Jesus Christ was an esteemed prophet."
What do you think of Jesus Christ? Who is He?
The Gospel of John introduces the Lord Jesus Christ with three tremendous statements:
“In the beginning was the Word,”
“And the Word was with God,”
“And the Word was God.”
It can be stated that in this simple sentence is the most compact theological statement in all of the Bible. These verses teach us three separate truths about who Jesus is.
First, HE IS ETERNALLY GOD. 1 In the beginning was the Word….
John begins his Gospel in an unusual manner. He starts “in the beginning.” Do those words sound familiar to you? They take us back to Gen. 1.1: “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” John starts with God. In the Bible, you cannot go any further back than God, and that is where John begins, in eternity past with God’s eternal purpose.