Jesus is the key persona in the history of human kind. Learn about His identity and get proofs of His existance.
Who is Jesus?
One third of all the inhabitants of this planet proclaims that Jesus is God, because the Holy Book tells us about His personality and divinity. Jesus also is the Redeemer of people’s souls from iniquity and death; He is the real historical figure with enough of verification to support His reality.
We obtain the main information on His life, death and resurrection from 4 Gospels in the New Testament. On the other hand there are non-Biblical sources that proof his historicity.
Who is Jesus? - Humanness of Christ
Often in the Gospels Jesus used a name “the Son of Man” for Himself (Example: Gospel of John 5:26). Why is that? He just intended to highlight his similarity to us. He was a 100 present human, a man just like all the rest of the people in the world. There was the only distinction between Him and everybody else: He has never commit iniquity.
He was the faultless man; the only man, able to keep Mosaic Law and fulfill all its commandments (all 613 of them). Jesus was the physical offspring of King David. Both of His parents Joseph and Mary have come from the kingly line of heritage.
His family came from Bethlehem, the place of His birth. Later on His family imigrated to Egypt and then to Nazareth. That’s where the name Jesus of Nazareth comes from.
There is no picture of Jesus, but we have His description in Torah (Old Testament): He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him. (Isaiah 53:2). He was just like any of us.
Deity of Jesus
The Scriptures address Jesus as the Son of God (Gospel of Mathew 14:33). Many times in Gospels Jesus adopted for himself the most consecrated name of God – Jehovah or I am. He also said that He and the Father is one. There are many oracles in the Word of God, that point out His divinity.
His deeds are the top testimony of His deity. Jesus cured the sick, resurrected the dead, cast out devils, fed the hungry and poor and gave hope to the lost and frustrated. He has the strength to restore human lives. Jesus the human understands our weaknesses, Jesus the God has opened up a way for our iniquities to be covered and removed and for us to be restored.
Jesus the Messiah
The name of Jesus Christ it’s not just a name; sooner it is a title. Greek word “Christ” sounds as “Messiah” in Hebrew language. It is not a name; it’s a title that factually stands for: the anointed one.
Historically Israel kings were anointed with oil. It’s an ancient tradition of inauguration.
Bible contains God’s promise on the coming of the king, who would save them and redeem them.
This great king had to be from the family of King David. He would deliver and rule the nation of Israel forever.
Yeshua is how his name sounds in Hebrew. It means Jehovah (God) is rescue. And Christ the Messiah is his title – the anointed king of God. His coming was predicted thousands of years ago. This coming had a purpose; He had a mission to fulfill.
According to the Bible everyone have committed transgressions (Romans 3:23). Sin basically means “missing the mark”. People failed to match God’s expectations of them; they cannot possibly fulfill the Law of God. Most people have hard time even keeping the ten commands, let along all the 613 ones.
Sin splits people from God and it is fatal (Romans 6:23). God is kind and full of love. It’s not His desire for humans to agonize and die. At this time God is also impartial and just. He cannot leave sins unpunished.
There is a different name in the Bible for Jesus. It is the Lamb of God (John 1:29 and 36). Formerly people used to kill animals as sacrifices to God for their immoralities. Even today in certain religions (Islam) they slaughter animals to shed blood for their transgressions.
Jesus’ mission was to become that sacrificial lamb uplifted to God for our transgrassions, so that we could be pardoned. Jesus on the cross is not an mishap or bad luck, as some people think.
Many people pity Him in His sufferings, but they do not realize that the blood of Jesus was shed on the cross for them.
God has laid our sins upon Jesus, who died and rose again. Now we can receive God’s mercy and acceptance through the trust in Jesus the Messiah – the anointed king of God. His mission was to come, live a virtuous life, show people the image and resemblance of God, to die on the cross and to rise again.
Thousands and hundreds years before the coming of Jesus the Old Testament seers predicted His coming and His mission – the salvation of human souls.
Old Testament prophecies about Jesus
The Old Testament encompasses hundreds of prophesies about Christ. Some of them were given 4000 years before His coming. During His life Jesus has fulfilled 353 such prophesies and many are still left for the future.
Many of these visions are found in the book of Isaiah the prophet. He foretells that Jesus would be born of virgin (Isaiah 7:14). He predicts that Jesus would come and heal people; he tells that the Messiah would grieve and die for the sins of people. The entire life, death and resurrection of Christ have been pronounced by God in the Bible.
The Old Testament predicts the linage of Jesus, the town He would be born in; His coming to Egypt in the childhood years; his death on the cross and pierced hand and feet. Bible has so many details on the life of Christ that have been termed way before His birth.
Historical proof of His reality
So, who is Jesus? Did he really walk this Earth? Is there enough evidence to proof that?
What is more the Bible there are the unbiblical sources that provide proof of His historicity.
Of course, there is the famous Josephus and his Antiquities of the Jews. Christ is mentioned there twice as a historical personage.
Another secular source that mentions Jesus is Tacitus’ writings. He lived in the second century and was a Roman historian. There are many other sources that mention the name and life of Christ.
Moreover, all the four Gospels can be viewed as valid historical documents. Scholars studying the ancient history agree that Jesus Christ is a historical person and there is no doubt about that.
The role of Jesus in history
Now we know who Jesus is, but what does it mean for us and how did He affect our world and our lives. For one, Jesus and Christianity have dramatically changed the world, all nations and regions, Africa and Nigeria in particular.
The greatest change in faith and religion in the history was attained by Christianity. Nations and personal lives got transformed by the strength of God through His church. However, we can see many less spiritual and supernatural impacts of Jesus in the history.
Jesus taught people how to love and have compassion for each other. As the result Christian church founded thousands of hospitals all over the globe. Many hospitals both in Europe and America, and even in Nigeria are named after Christian saints. Like the St. Nicholas Hospital in Lagos, Nigeria.
Many Christian priests were scientists. Churches opened up the schools and fostered education, which is a corner stone of our modern civilization. The doctrine of Christ on righteous life and the compassion of sins for many years have prohibited the world from getting into a disaster. Where the Christian values get lost, people get trouble with marriage, relations, honesty and other issues.
Second coming of Jesus
Now we know that Jesus is a historical personage and we know that to 1 third of the world’s residents He is God. What’s next? Is this all to know about Him? The Bible and Jesus Himself prophecy about the second coming of Christ (Acts 1:11).
There are many scriptures both in the Old and in the New Testaments that foresee the second coming of Christ and tell us the signs of how to know that time.
One of the most astonishing signs has already been fulfilled in our time. It is the gathering of the Jewish nation in the land of Israel.
Just in one day people who have lost their land and nationality and have been scattered around the globe for almost 2000 years have become a nation again (Isaiah 66:8). We live in remarkable times and many of the prophesies are being fulfilled right in front of our eyes.
For Nigerians the Jesus could be their Lord, as up to 50 percent of the population is Christians. For others He could be just a prophet. However, the impact of His life, death and resurrection is immeasurable both for the world’s community and for personal lives of people.