Monday, November 26, 2012

Who is Jesus? ...and Why Should I Follow Him? (2)

Is Jesus of Nazareth the Messiah?
Is He the appointed one?
The one whose coming is foretold throughout the prophesies of the Old Testament?

We've already looked at evidence that this Jesus really did exist (here). Though there are some varying accounts of the details of his life, there can be no doubt that he did, in fact, live and die in Israel around the time indicated by the gospels of the New Testament.

But is this same Jesus the long awaited Messiah?

There is much that has been written of the messianic prophesies, far more than I could ever read and written far better than I could ever write. There are more than 300 prophesies in the Old Testament that either promise a coming redeemer or tell something about the coming redeemer. Many of those scriptures can be found here.

Some might say that many of these are general in nature and could be fulfilled by any number of people. It many be correct that many people could fulfill many of the prophesies, but how likely is it that only one person is able to fulfill all of them.

Scientist Peter Stoner conservatively calculated the probability of just eight prophesies being fulfilled in just one person at 1 in 100,000,000,000,000,000. It has been said that if you covered an area the size of the state of Texas two feet deep with silver dollars and had one marked with an X; the odds of a blind man walking along and randomly stopping to pick up one coin and having it be the marked coin would be about the same!

You can see how Prof. Stoner arrived at these numbers here.

Also contained in the article by Dr. David R Reagan are other prophesies and probabilities and some oddities that point to divine revelation. Consider the following:

One of the most remarkable Messianic prophecies in the Hebrew Scriptures is the one that precisely states that the Messiah will die by crucifixion. It is found in Psalm 22 where David prophesied the Messiah would die by having His hands and feet pierced (Psalm 22:16). That prophecy was written 1,000 years before Jesus was born. When it was written, the Jewish method of execution was by stoning. The prophecy was also written many years before the Romans perfected crucifixion as a method of execution.
Even when Jesus was killed, the Jews still relied on stoning as their method of execution, but they had lost the power to implement the death penalty due to Roman occupation. That is why they were forced to take Jesus to Pilate, the Roman governor, and that's how Jesus ended up being crucified, in fulfillment of David's prophecy.
The bottom line is that the fulfillment of Bible prophecy in the life of Jesus proves conclusively that He truly was God in the flesh. It also proves that the Bible is supernatural in origin.

Though it would appear, even to a casual reader, that there is a great deal of evidence that supports that Jesus is the indeed the Messiah, each of us gets to decide for ourselves what we will do with the information. If Jesus is the Messiah; if he is the Son of God; if he is God--what then?

What does His life and death mean for us? What are we to do with this information? How can it be that a God that is great enough to create the whole of the universe cares about each of us as individuals? Or does He? Is our God a god that desires to have a personal relationship with His creation?

Those are questions we'll address in another post. For now, who is Jesus--to you?

John <><

1 comment:

Dylann Andre said...

He is our brother. I love your article john. I'll never be boring reading this. It helps me enlighten my mind of who is realy Jesus is. Thanks to you. I'll recommend this to my freiinds.