Summary: This is a basic defense and explanation of why a person should put their faith in Jesus and why they should believe that He is the Lord.
A. Paul Harvey told about a 3-year-old boy who went to the grocery store with his mother.
1. Before they entered the grocery store she said to him, “Now you’re not going to get any chocolate chip cookies, so don’t even ask.”
2. She put him in the cart and he sat in the little child’s seat while she wheeled down the aisles.
3. He was doing just fine until they came to the cookie section.
a. He saw the chocolate chip cookies and he stood up in the seat and said, “Mom, can I have some chocolate chip cookies?”
b. She said, “I told you not even to ask. You’re not going to get any at all.”
4. So he sat back down and they continued down the aisles, but in their search for certain items they ended up back in the cookie aisle.
a. “Mom, can I please have some chocolate chip cookies?”
b. She said, “I told you that you can’t have any. Now sit down and be quiet.”
5. Finally, as they approached the checkout, the little boy sensed that this may be his last chance.
a. So just before they got to the line, he stood up on the seat of the cart and shouted in his loudest voice, “In the name of Jesus, may I have some chocolate chip cookies?”
b. And everybody around just laughed. Some even applauded.
c. And, according to Paul Harvey, due to the generosity of the other shoppers, the little boy and his mother left with 23 boxes of chocolate chip cookies.
B. For many of us the name of Jesus is the sweetest and most powerful name in the world.
1. But for others Jesus is either one they respect or one they reject as having even existed.
2. The late Christopher Hitchens wrote a book provocatively titled God is not Great.
a. One of the main responses to that book was entitled What's so Great about Christianity?
b. In my view it was the wrong title and the wrong answer. Christianity is not great. Christ is.
c. Far too often we are so busy defending Christianity, or the Church, or the actions and words of some self-professing Christians, that we forget about Christ.
d. And yet, Jesus is the ultimate apologetic. Truth is not a set of propositions. It is a Person.
3. David Robertson is a minister, author and teacher in Scotland who one day was having a conversation with a student about Jesus and the student asked, “Yes, but who is Jesus?”
a. This student was not ignorant - he had the usual general knowledge and cultural awareness of Jesus, but his question was spot on – “Who is Jesus, really?”
b. Roberston wondered how to respond, he wanted to offer something to read, but he could not think of a book about Jesus to give a post-modern 21st Century western secularist.
c. So Robertson decided to write a book that he entitled Magnificent Obsession.
4. When asked, where he got that title “Magnificent Obsession,” Robertson reminisced about a BBC program he had watched as a teenager entitled How to Get to Heaven in Montana.
a. It was the story of a Mennonite community where some of the younger members had become “born-again” Christians, which had resulted in some tensions in the community.
b. The preacher died and his son became the leader of the “born agains.”
c. The young leader was asked by the interviewer: “What does Jesus Christ mean to you?”
d. Robertson said, “I will never forget the look on his face, as his eyes filled with tears and he passionately and quietly explained, ‘Jesus? Jesus? He is my everything. He is beautiful. He is my Magnificent Obsession.’ ”
C. Today, I want to try to convey to you why Jesus is my “Magnificent Obsession.”
1. Christianity is unique among world religions, and Christ’s true uniqueness is the centerpiece of Christianity.
2. The truth about Christ is based primarily on the New Testament documents which have been shown to be authentic.
3. The New Testament record, especially the Gospels, is one of the most reliable documents from the ancient world.
4. From these documents we learn that numerous facets of Christ are absolutely unique.
D. Jesus Christ is unique in that he alone, of all who ever lived, was both God and man.
1. The New Testament teaches the fully unified deity and humanity of Christ.
2. The Nicene Creed (AD 325) states the uniform belief of all orthodox Christianity that Christ was fully God and fully man in one person.
3. All heresies regarding Christ deny one or both of these propositions.
4. This, as a claim alone, makes him unique above all other religious leaders or persons who have ever lived, and it can be backed up with factual evidence.