“Christ” (Names of Jesus)

            My name is Jerry.  But some people feel uncomfortable using that name so they call me ‘Pastor.’  I have gotten used to that designation and answer to it when addressed in that way.  It has become almost like a second name for me.  In reality, though, it isn’t a name at all but a title.  Common use turns it into a name.  That is true of other titles like ‘Doctor,’ ‘Coach’ and ‘Teacher.’  It also applies to the title ‘Christ,’ for ‘Christ’ is the label which describes The God-man who was prophesied to come to earth to reconcile man and God by His death and resurrection.  The fact that this title was applied to Jesus of Nazareth shows that Jesus the man was also the Christ/Messiah.  Others recognized this about Him (Luke 9:18-27; John 1:40-42; 4:25-26). 

            What was so special about being the Christ?  We must understand more about the name to grasp the full significance of it.  ‘Christ’ is the Greek word for ‘anointed (or smeared).’  The Old Testament equivalent is ‘Messiah,:” which also means ‘anointed.’  This was usually done with oil and was used as the initiation of a man as a priest (Exodus 29:29; Leviticus 4:3), a prophet (Isaiah 61:1) or a king (1 Samuel 10:1; 24:7; 1 Kings 19:16).  When Christ was baptized by John the Holy Spirit anointed Him as a priest, prophet and king (Matthew 3:16-17).  This was one of the hundreds of prophecies that He fulfilled showing He alone qualified to be the Christ.  No other person could ever be all three for no mere human being could be both a king (tribe of Judah) and priest (tribe of Levi).  Jesus was able to be both because He was a priest after the order of Melchizedek, an eternal priesthood, and not of Aaron’s priesthood which lasted only for this life (Hebrews r:6-10; 6:20; 7:1-17). 

            Jesus as priest.  A priest was a go-between between God and man.  He represented God to man but showing us what God was like and what He expected of us.  He also represented man to God because, as a man, He knew by experience all that we go through.  We benefit from His sacrifice and intercession (Hebrews 7:25).  As the Messiah He showed man God’s perfect standard, which man cannot meet.  As the Messiah He also paid God’s price for sin by His suffering on the cross so we could reconciled to God.  When Jesus left His carpenter’s shop in Nazareth to present Himself to John as the Messiah He was volunteering to do all that was required of the Messiah and prophesied in the Old Testament (Isaiah 53 for example). 

            Jesus as prophet.  A prophet warned of danger and guided the people in their future direction.  Jesus does this through His teaching ministry.  His words are recorded in the 4 gospels.  He reveals them to us through His Spirit (John 14:26; 16:13).  Having provided salvation as our priest, He now teaches us how to live as our prophet.

            Jesus as king.  Jesus came as King of the Jews on Palm Sunday, but most rejected Him because they wanted a military king to fight against Rome instead of a lamb to be slaughtered for sin.  Pilate recognized who He was and put a sign on the cross proclaiming Him as the king of the Jews.  Revelation 19 describes what it will be like when this King returns!  A king is responsible to provide for and care for His people, and Jesus does that for us by giving us spiritual gifts (Ephesians 1:3; etc.).  Paul lists many blessings from our King (“in christ”) throughout Ephesians. 

            In the Gospels He is referred to as “Jesus Christ” for the focus is on His humanity.  The man Jesus of Nazareth is the God-man prophesied to be our Priest, Prophet and King!  However in the epistles Paul refers to Him as “Christ Jesus” for after His resurrection and ascension the focus is on Jesus as the God-man who conquered sin.  He is exalted and glorified God who had become the man Jesus of Nazareth.  Jesus suffered in the past but Christ lives eternally at the right hand of God in heaven. 

 

APPLICATION ASSIGNMENT

            Christ as king has given you many great gifts.  List as many as you can.

            What gifts can you give Him?  What is the main gift He wants from you?

BIBLE STUDY ASSIGNMENT

Lets continue to dig deeper into a passage by asking questions.  Read Romans 10:9-13.  If you were in the church at Rome and this was read to you, what questions would you have for Paul the next time he visited?  Think of as many as you can and write them down.

For more blogs and Bible articles go to  http://sw.christiantrainingonline.org/.  If you have questions or comments you can  email Jerry at jerry@schmoyer.net.

C t O Rev. Dr. JERRY SCHMOYER
Christian Training Organization
jerry@ChristianTrainingOrganization.org
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