Believing in Jesus

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That Jesus is an actual historical person cannot be overemphasized. His life, ministry, and execution are well-documented historical facts. Even his miracles are spoken of in historical writings outside the Bible.
When we talk about placing faith in Jesus, we are talking about placing faith in him for forgiveness and salvation, but we are also talking about believing the facts about him. He was a lower-class Jewish man who would have been called Yeshua, or Iesous to Greek-speaking individuals. He was born approximately 4 BC in Bethlehem to a young woman who was a biological descendant of David, the warrior-king of Israel. He was raised in Nazareth by Mary his mother, and Joseph his adoptive father. He learned the carpenter’s trade from Joseph and lived in obscurity for most of his life. Jesus (Yeshua) was an actual person. He most likely would have had a favorite food, a unique personality, and a circle of personal friends growing up. Jesus (Yeshua) was a person who existed on earth and left his footprints wherever he went. At the approximate age of 30, Jesus (Yeshua) was baptized by an eccentric prophet/preacher named John and subsequently began a preaching and miracle ministry that lasted over three years. He acquired many followers, most famously, the twelve disciples, eleven of whom would continue Jesus’ ministry after his death. Jesus’ ministry was brought to a sudden end when he was arrested during the Jewish Passover week in Jerusalem. He was convicted of blasphemy and executed by Roman crucifixion, perhaps the cruelest means of execution ever devised.

 

In addition to these facts, the Christian Gospel maintains the following to be equally true based on the witness recorded in the New Testament by eyewitnesses and Jesus’ own personal testimony recorded in the four Gospels. Jesus’ lack of a biological father on earth is due to the fact that he is the Son of God. His mother was a virgin when she conceived and when she bore Jesus. Jesus (Yeshua) fulfilled many ancient prophecies from the Old Testament and is in fact the foretold Jewish Messiah. Jesus had existed for eternity before being born in Bethlehem for he was and is God. Jesus is God, specifically the second person of the Trinity. His biological link to David through Mary is not incidental as he was of Davidic descent by divine direction and design, his lineage being before promised in the Old Testament writings. Jesus’ death was and is a vicarious atonement for the human race, particularly the elect – those who respond to the Gospel and are saved. Jesus was raised from the dead three days after his crucifixion. This resurrection was testament to his identity as the Son of God, the sinless one. The body of Jesus was glorified, that is, repaired from its damage and restored from any curse of sin. His body was raised eternal and glorious, that is, it is similar in appearance to a normal human body, but is of a supernatural and eternal quality. It is with this body that Jesus ascended back to heaven and is soon returning bodily to reign over creation as the King over all kings and Lord over all lords. Through Jesus’ incarnation as a man, his death, and his resurrection; God became man. God is now both God and man and will be so for all eternity. It is through this “adoption” of the human nature by God, that God and men will be able to fellowship throughout eternity.
This is Jesus as the Bible presents him. This is what all true Christians confess about Jesus Christ. I pray this is your confession as well.
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