We have embarked upon a 5-part Bible study with the objective of knowing God. We started by learning about the Trinity – three Persons united as The One God. Then, in the previous part, we learned about God Our Father: His authority, sovereignty, adoption, discipline; His role as the One to whom we pray, and His love. Right now, we are going to study Scripture to learn what we can about God the Son. We’re getting to know Jesus! But, friends, there is just no way to contain all there is to be known of Jesus in one blog post, so this is going to be both long, and shockingly inadequate. I’ve done my best to hit the most important aspects while keeping it simple.
Jesus’ Submission to the Father
In the previous section, one of the things we discussed about God the Father was how He has ultimate authority over all things, including the Son and the Spirit. What’s amazing about that is, it seems the Father’s authority is only the result of God the Son (and the Holy Spirit) submitting to it. At least from my understanding of Scripture, Jesus didn’t have to give up the authority of His divine privilege and place Himself under the authority of the Father. He chose to. (Philippians 2:5-8, John 12:44-46, Matthew 26:39, John 1;10-14, Mark 10:45, Hebrews 5:8)
And in so doing, He provided for us a perfect picture of submission.
God the Son, who is completely equal to the Father in every way, chose to humble Himself and place Himself into the authority structure of the Godhead. And if Jesus (who is God), could place Himself under the Father’s will, we (who are nothing) certainly should be able to respond to Him in humble obedience as well!
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God Revealed through the God-man
I’m not sure any of us grasp how much a choice like that cost Jesus. Submission is not without cost. But as humans, we can’t understand what it means to forsake divine privilege. We are finite, so omnipresence confined to two tiny cells inside a womb, or omnipotence bound by time and space is beyond us.
But in order for us to have any hope, God had to be revealed to us. We needed a way back into that intimate garden relationship, but there was no way on our own.
So, Jesus became the God-man. Our Immanuel. God with us. It is only because of Jesus’s submission to the father that we can know God. (Matthew 1:23,Hebrews 1:1-3, Colossians 1:15, 2 Corinthians 4:5-6, Isaiah 7:14)
John 1:14 & 18 – So the Word became human and made His home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. And we have seen His glory, the glory of the Father’s one and only Son… No one has ever seen God. But the Unique One, who is Himself God, is near to the Father’s heart. He has revealed God to us.
Getting to Know Jesus – Fully God and Fully Man
The Bible tells us Jesus was fully God, and somehow also fully man. He was born into a dying human body, but able to live a sinless life in this fallen world. He was fully tempted in every way we are, yet He was without sin.
It’s easy to gloss over that part, but it was no small feat for Him to live a perfect life. Getting to know Jesus for who He really was requires that we understand the full scope of His humanity. Even though He was God, and incapable of sin, remember He was also fully man. So He got irritated, His feelings got hurt, and His heart ached. He longed for many of the things we long for.
I read an interesting idea recently in a book called Holy Sexuality by Christopher Yuan. (Click for affiliate link) He said that none of us have actually experienced temptation to its fullest as Jesus did, because every one of us gives in to temptation at some point. Jesus never did, so the temptation raged at a level we will never even know!!! It wasn’t easy!
The Sinless, Spotless, Lamb of God
Yet without His perfection, His sacrifice wouldn’t have been sufficient. He was the sinless, spotless Lamb, and no other offering would have satisfied the wrath of God. (John 4:24-26, , Luke 4:1-2, 1 Peter 2:2, Matthew 16:15-16)
Isaiah 53:1-12 – Who has believed our message? To whom has the Lord revealed His powerful arm?
My servant grew up in the Lord’s presence like a tender green shoot, like a root in dry ground. There was nothing beautiful or majestic about His appearance, nothing to attract us to Him.
He was despised and rejected – a man of sorrows, acquainted with deepest grief. We turned our backs on Him and looked the other way. He was despised and we did not care.
Yet it was our weakness He carried; it was our sorrows that weighed Him down. And we thought His troubles were a punishment from God, a punishment for His own sins!
But He was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed.
All of us, like sheep, have strayed away. We have left God’s paths to follow our own. Yet the Lord laid on Him the sins of us all.
Getting to Know Jesus Christ the Messiah and Savior of the World
Of everything we’ll learn about God the Son today, this is the most important. Getting to know Jesus means allowing this truth to become a defining aspect of our lives. I believe it’s the most important truth in the whole Bible… the most important truth of all: Jesus Christ is the only way to salvation. There is no other.
John 14:6 – Jesus told him, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one can come to the Father except through Me.
Jesus Christ the Messiah
It was not a surprise when Jesus was born that night. The angels did not announce an event the world was not expecting. Jesus Christ the Messiah had been promised. His presence had been LONG awaited!
Isaiah 7:14 – All right then, the Lord Himself will give you a sign. Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son and will call Him Immanuel (which means “God with us.”)
Isaiah 9:2-7 – The people who walk in darkness will see a great light. For those who live in a land of deep darkness, a light will shine… For you will break the yoke of their slavery and lift the heavy burden from their shoulders. You will break the oppressor’s rod…
For a child is born to us, a son is given to us. The government will rest on His shoulders. And He will be called: Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. His government and its peace will never end. He will rule with fairness and justice from the throne of His ancestor David for all eternity. The passionate commitment of the Lord of Heaven’s Armies will make this happen!
God promised a savior to Adam and Eve right after the fall, and He reaffirmed His promise over and over. To Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to Moses and the nation of Israel, to David and his family, and to countless prophets throughout the Old Testament Era. (Click for an article with a bunch of Messianic prophesies and references.)
Jesus the Savior of the World
Yes, the world knew Messiah was coming, and He did come. He came to earth as a human and lived a perfect life. No one else has ever done that or will ever do that.
His perfect life was the only sacrifice sufficient to pay our enormous sin debt, and He willingly offered it. He broke the rod of our oppressor, and lifted the yoke of slavery to sin which burdened our necks. Just as the prophecy promised.
That’s why He’s the only way. No other payment would do it, and there certainly was no one else offering (or able) to pay it.
Our part in this is so simple! We only have to believe what the Bible tells us about Jesus, believe in what He did for us, and then call out to Him in repentance and accept the free gift of salvation He offers to us. After that, we get to spend the rest of our lives, and all eternity, getting to know Jesus as our Lord and Savior! (Romans 10:9-10 & 13)
Getting to Know Jesus our Healer
Our Messiah doesn’t just save us though, He redeems us. He is Jehovah Rapha: The Lord, Our Healer. His healing power was obvious during His earthly ministry, but what we may not be so quick to realize is He always has been, and always will be the ultimate healer – the One who heals body, mind, spirit, and soul through His redemptive power. (Psalms 103:1-5)
- Body: Exodus 15:26, Proverbs 3:7-8, Matthew 9:35, Acts 9:34.
- Mind: Isaiah 61: 3, John 16:33, Philippians 4:6-7, Revelation 21:4.
- Spirit: Luke 9:42, John 8:36.
- Soul: Mark 2:17, Matthew 11:28, 2 Corinthians 5:17-18.
Can we praise Jesus our Healer today for how He is making us new? If we’re struggling with illness, let’s humbly ask our Great Physician to do His healing work. Let’s rejoice in the intricacies of our minds and give all our anxieties to Jesus. Peace is found in the truth that He has overcome the darkness in this world, so let’s allow Him to set us free from whatever binds us. Let’s worship the One who lights up that darkness and find confidence in the assurance that one glorious day, He will wipe away all our tears and we’ll never again experience pain or sorrow. May we accept His yoke and be renewed as we rise up under its weightlessness. (1 Peter 2:24)
Jeremiah 17:14 – Oh Lord, if You heal me, I will be truly healed; if You save me, I will be truly saved. My praises are for You alone!
Jesus the Shepherd and Head of the Church
We’ve already seen examples of God’s sense of order in the way He has built structure into relationships. We saw the perfect example in the Godhead. Here on earth He sets up relationships meant to mirror that structure with: An authority to bear ultimate responsibility for their communities and lovingly take on the role of leadership, and those who willingly place themselves under that authority.
We see it designed into the family structure, the formation of Israel, and most importantly, His church. But ultimately, all these human authorities have been placed under the headship of God the Son: The Chief Shepherd. (1 Peter 5:1-4)
Getting to Know Jesus the Good Shepherd
What a privilege it is to be under the care of Jesus, the Good Shepherd! He provides for our every need: He feeds us, gives us rest, holds us close, rejoices over us, leads us, protects us, comforts us and renews our strength. He pursues us and knows us intimately, and is willing to sacrifice Himself for us. We are secure in Him and cannot be snatched from His hand. (What a magnificent picture of leadership!!)
Jesus is the Head of the Church
Beyond being our Shepherd, the Bible also says Jesus is the “Head” of church. The church is described as a body: Many parts with separate and unique functions operating as one united being. (Sounds a lot like the Trinity!)
The role of the Head is to lead, equip, and unite the body. It is only through submission to the authority of Christ we can function as one church united in love. (Ephesians 4:13b-16, Colossians 2:9-10, Ephesians 1:22-23, Hebrews 13:20-21, Colossians 1:15-20)
Getting to Know Jesus Our High Priest
When God created the world, He made it perfect and unspoiled. He communed daily with the people He had made, walking with them through the garden and talking with them.
But Adam and Eve sinned and all creation fell under the curse of death. Mankind found himself separated forever from God, unable to come into His presence as before.
So, as I talked about earlier, God set a plan into motion that would one day lead to the cross of Jesus Christ. This plan would provide a way for His people to once again enter His presence and enjoy His company.
In the time before Christ came, God initiated a system through the family of Abraham meant to demonstrate the need for Messiah. In this system God gave His people the law, which they could not keep. He appointed priests and then judges and then kings intended to draw His wayward people back toward Himself.
Under the old system, the people couldn’t enter God’s presence. The Holy of Holies, where His presence resided, was covered by a curtain; made separate so only the High Priest could enter.
Under this system the sacrifice of animals wasn’t enough to open the way. The countless sacrifices made were nothing more than a symbol to help the people look forward to a better, perfect sacrifice that would truly cover their sins. Only that promised sacrifice would provide a way back to God. (Hebrews 9:8, 11-12, Matthew 27:51.)
Jesus as Judge and Advocate, and Priest Forever in the Order of Melchizedek
I am so emotionally stirred every time I think about that curtain in the Temple being torn in two as Jesus breathed His last breath! The eternal significance of that moment cannot be overstated!
In that moment Jesus became not only the sacrifice needed for reconciliation, but He also replaced every human mediator (Advocate) ever needed before that moment.
He also became the eternal Judge, determining who has repented and believed and can receive His redemption. One wonderful and terrible day, He will come again and execute that judgement on the world. For those of us who belong to Him, it will be a day of victory. But for those who don’t, it will be damning.
Finally, in that glorious moment, as the rending of the sacred curtain echoed through the corners of the Temple, Jesus became our Great High Priest forever. The Bible tells us His priesthood is in the order of Melchizedek, who was not from the family of Aaron. As our priest, Jesus ministers the New Covenant between God and man. (Hebrews 8:1-2, & 6, John 5:22,26-27, 1 John 2:1-2)
What a privilege it is to now have the opportunity to be made right with God and enjoy the freedom to enter into His holy presence any time I want! To know one day, I will stand before the judgment seat of Christ, covered by His blood – holy and perfect, and I will live with Him forever! (2 Corinthians 5:10,
1 Timothy 2:5-6, Hebrews 4:14-16.)
Getting to Know Jesus: the Resurrected Christ, and Our Coming King
The death of God the Son accomplished much, but how exciting to think about what His resurrection means for the future! He was the first human to be truly resurrected with an eternal, glorified body.
Yes, there were a handful of people miraculously brought back to life, but every one of them died again. The resurrection of Jesus was different. It was forever, and it was the assurance that He will do the same for those of us who believe! (Revelation 1:4-8, I Thessalonians 4:13-18.)
There is much we don’t know about eternity, and there is a lot we can only make educated guesses about. But there are some things on which the Bible is very clear:
- After the resurrection, Jesus ascended back to heaven, (after the brief time he spent with His followers) and He will stay there until the day when He returns to earth in the same way He left it.
- He is preparing a place for us so we can be with Him forever.
- He sent us the Holy Spirit to guide us until He returns.
- We know FOR SURE He will come again and after that will come the judgment.
- Those of us who believe will be made new and will live with Him forever. We will be given new bodies that will never die. We will be made like Him.
- When this earth is destroyed and God’s eternal Kingdom is established, Jesus Christ will reign on the throne of David forever and ever.
Jesus the Coming King
He is the promised coming King. The Messiah. The Holy One of Israel. God the Son. The Lion of Judah. The Lord God of Heaven’s Armies. The King of kings and the Lord of lords! (Acts 1:8-11, Acts 17:30-31, 1 Corinthians 15:52, John 14:2-3, Isaiah 11:1-3, Revelation 19: 11-16)
Friends, it’s as good as finished. When John, in the prophetic vision he described in Revelation, saw the church standing before the throne of God in heaven, he saw me and you! (If you are a believer)
Jesus DID rise from the dead, he DID ascend to heaven, he IS preparing a place for us, and He WILL come again! He WILL land the final blow against sin and death and He WILL defeat the forces of darkness once and for all. And every knee, in heaven, and on earth, and under the earth WILL bow before Him! (Philippians 2:9-11)
Let’s not wait until that day. Let’s do it now! We can bow before Him today and declare: Jesus Christ IS LORD, to the glory of God the Father! Let’s heed the final words of Christ found below, earnestly pray the closing words from Revelation 22:16-21, and live every moment of our lives in expectation, getting to know Jesus Christ every chance we get!
“I, Jesus, have sent my angel to give you this message for the churches. I am both the source of David and the heir to his throne. I am the Bright Morning Star.”
The Spirit and the bride say, “Come.” Let anyone who hears this say, “Come.” Let anyone who is thirsty come. Let anyone who desires drink freely from the water of life. And I solemnly declare to everyone who hears the words of prophecy written in this book: If anyone adds anything to what is written here, God will add to that person the plagues described in this book. And if anyone removes any of the words from this book of prophecy, God will remove that person’s share in the tree of life and in the holy city that are described in this book. He who is the faithful witness to all these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon!”
AMEN! COME LORD JESUS! May the grace of the Lord Jesus be with God’s holy people.
*How about you? What is your favorite thing about God the Son? How are you getting to know Jesus today?
Catch up with the rest of the Getting to Know God Bible Study: