Who is Jesus Christ?
A look into the calendar shows us daily what a great impact Jesus Christ had in the course of history. The calendar marks the date of his birth about 2000 years ago. So, who was this Jesus Christ actually?
What kind of extraordinary person was he that our calendar should be marked by B.C. (before Christ) and A.D. (Anno Domini; meaning of the Latin words: ‘In the year of the Lord’). Some people call Jesus Christ a prophet, or a fanatic, rebel, philosopher or even characterise him as a mocker of God. Others worship him to this day and speak of him as Prince of Peace, Son of God and Lord of heaven and earth. They are convinced that Jesus Christ lives, forgives sins and gives eternal life.
Jesus Christ in history
His life according to the Bible and ancient accounts in history state that
- was born about 2000 years ago in Bethlehem, as celebrated on Christmas
- grew up in Nazareth
- was trained as a carpenter
- spent around three years of his life at the age of about 30 as an itinerant preacher
- was condemned and crucified when Pontius Pilate was the Roman governor of Judea (Good Friday)
- was raised from the dead after three days (Easter)
- ascended into heaven 40 days after Easter (Ascension)
Even today these Christian events (in brackets) are celebrated by millions of people worldwide.
Jesus Christ is a challenge
He made it clear that he was the Son of God. This was not well received by the religious leaders of his time, and soon after his first public appearance, they decided to get rid of him.
But that was a risky enterprise because his words had left a great impact on his audience. More than once the religious leaders had to admit their inferiority when discussing with him about religion.
How Jesus Christ approached people
The general public was fascinated by him just as much as the religious leaders hated him. Once, some people dragged their paralysed friend to Jesus Christ hoping for a miracle. Jesus Christ saw their trust in him, so he said to the paralytic: “Friend, your sins are forgiven.” Indeed, this outrageous statement irritated the onlookers: “Who can forgive sins but God alone?!” Jesus Christ knew what they were thinking and asked: “Which is easier: to say, ‘your sins are forgiven,’ or to say ‘get up and walk’?” And he told the paralysed man, “Get up, take your mat and go home.” To their amazement the man stood up and walked (Luke 5:17-26).
Words put into action
His teaching was just as unconventional as his deeds. For instance, “Love your enemies and pray for those who hate and persecute you.” No one had ever heard such a command. Everyone was acquainted with, “Love your neighbour and hate your enemy”. There is no sense in rewarding bad deeds with love, is there? But the life of Jesus Christ was a constant reminder, “With God’s power you will be able to do just that.”
From the highlights of his life …
Finally his enemies succeeded to capture him in secret and 24 hours later Jesus Christ was condemned and crucified despite being proven innocent. A pitiful departure, you might say. No, his crucifixion was part of God’s plan. In his death Jesus Christ paid for the sins of all mankind. After three days God raised him from the dead and brought him back to life. During the following 40 days Jesus Christ appeared to some hundred people. Documents dating from that time confirm: Jesus Christ lives! Ultimately Jesus Christ accomplished his divine mission in that he died in our place and was raised from the dead and is alive. He became the Saviour and Redeemer (deliverer) of all who believe in him and receive him into their own life.
… to the highlight of my life
The life of Jesus Christ and his message didn’t leave me in the dark. I realized that my countless bad deeds and thoughts had accumulated in a great heap of sin before God. No amount of beneficiary gifts or donations, no good deed could make up for the guilt of my sin. When I accepted the fact that Jesus Christ had died in my stead, my life was changed: I confessed my sins to God, asked him to forgive me and I made restitution for the wrong I had done. The miracle happened: God in his grace accepted me and forgave all my sins, because Jesus Christ died on my behalf. I can face up to God with a clear conscience, because Jesus Christ has become my Saviour. He is also my personal friend and I can share with him all my joys and sorrows. He gives me answers in the Bible and in prayer. My life has gained true purpose since the day Jesus Christ took control of it.
Your future with Jesus Christ
No one can pass by Jesus Christ without making up his mind. Either he is our Saviour or he will one day be our judge. It is possible for you to get to know Jesus Christ as your personal friend and Saviour! Although it sounds bold and daring, you are invited to do so! Jesus Christ died for your sins. Read more about his life in the New Testament. If you do not have your own copy of the Bible we will be pleased to send you one (see voucher overleaf).