This is a multi-part series
In my previous post I showed the 6 things that 1 John says that believers in Jesus need to believe/confess:
Acknowledge that Jesus is the Christ (the Messiah). – 1 John 2:22-25
- Acknowledge that Jesus is absolutely righteous. – 1 John 2:29
Believe in His Son Jesus Christ (the Messiah) and that we love one another – 1 John 3:23-24
Confess that Jesus is the Son of God – 1 John 4:15
Believe that Jesus is the Christ (the Messiah) – 1 John 5:1
Believe that Jesus is the Son of God – 1 John 5:5
An overcoming testimony will have three key components:
Jesus is absolutely righteous
Jesus is the Christ
Jesus is the Son of God
NOTE: In that previous post I showed 6 benefits for those who believe. I have found at least another 12 without looking too hard. I will list all 18 in the next post.
I will try to explain – as best as I know how… please forgive me for being human and prone to error – what being the “Christ” and “Son of God” and “being righteous” means. So I will ask three questions and search the bible for an answer to them.
NOTE: If you look at the teachings of the prophets, the Christ was shown in several stories to have a very big impact on his believers. So let’s have the hope and courage to aim high in our answers – provided they are biblical.
Question 1 – What does it mean: Jesus is absolutely righteous
It means He absolutely conformed to the Father’s will in purpose, thought, and action. This matters because we should have accepted Him as our High Priest (see Heb 7:26) and He made one single perfect sacrifice for all sins, for all time.
Human priests sacrificed every day. The instant they had finished they could not rest because sins were building up again. The next day they atoned again. But this High Priest – once for all – actually not only atoned (hid) the sins, but He actually removed them. He did this once and then the bible says He sat down at the right hand of the Father in Heaven.
The reason we must confess Him as our High Priest and confess Him as absolutely righteous, is because we need to accept that He has made that one perfect sacrifice on our behalf. In this way that one perfect sacrific has forever removed our sin and cleansed us and perfected us.
The bible makes many references to Him making us holy through this perfect sacrifice. It frequently says that by removing sin, He removed the power of death from our lives. As our perfect High Priest the bible says He erected a more perfect tent/tabernacle over us. In fact the bible says that our bodies are the tabernacle and tent for God to dwell in – and God is not able to dwell in sinful vessels.
Jesus told His disciples that He had cleansed them. When Peter refused to have his feet bathed by Jesus, Jesus said that if He doesn’t wash Peter, then Peter HAS NO PART IN HIM. This part of our confession is important and should not be overlooked.
Question 2 – What does it mean: Jesus is the Christ?
We know that the bible says that Jesus Christ (the Messiah) is the actual fulfillment of all prophetic scripture. So we simply need to look through the prophecies about the promised Christ. He was promised back then, He came 2000 years ago – and each generation understands a bit more just what it is that He did for/to us! So what can see that the prophets foretold that this Christ would do!?
- crush the head of the snake (the same snake that caused the initial sin, death and separation from God to enter the world) – Gen 3:15
- the Seed that will possess the gates of the enemy, bless ALL the nations of the earth – Gen 22:17-18
- take upon Himself our sins and the consequences – Is 53:6
- stop the asp/snake from biting us (sin) and rendered the poison ineffective (consequences) –
take our sins and the iniquity, trauma, disease, sickness, weakness (consequences) – Is 53:4-6
Branch – He unwrapped of “iniquity and guilt” (sin) in a single day – Zech 3:9
Branch – brought you into the presence of God (because you are clean and there is no sin separating you from God) – Zech 3:7
Stone, Cornerstone – He cancelled the covenant with death and sheol – Is 28:15-20
Passover Lamb – He WILL NOT ALLOW the Destroyer (death) to enter your household – Ex 12:21-27
“be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.]” (John 16:33)
The Jews in Jesus’ time were looking for a powerful Christ/Messiah to overcome in the same way that King David did – to build a great nation and overcome surrounding nations. For this reason they anointed Herod as their king, because he did great and powerful exploits. What they failed to recognise was that the Christ/Messiah was coming to unwrap their sin and the sin of the world (for those who believe) as the prophets had foretold He would.
Question 3 – What does it mean: Jesus is the Son of God
I wrote quite a bit on this topic previously. Let me summarize the good stuff here. As the Son of God, He is able to “betrothe” you – which means to marry you and me. The entire church is His bride. The really big deal about this marriage is that the bride-to-be becomes His before the ceremony and her separation from her old father actually begins when she drinks from the cup of wine that He presents to her. By the time this cup of wine is presented, she has already been bought with a price from her old father. The new Father buys her for His Son. She now has a new Father, a new Husband, new brothers and sisters. If you are a seasoned Christian, all of this should sound very familiar.
You have been bought with a price by God
You have a new Father who will provide for you (Family, Husband)
Your old family has absolutely no claim on you (so don’t go back!)
You have a new Surname – the same one that God gave to His Son
You are a son of God (but obviously we have to be careful here and not imagine we are the Christ or anything)
You have an inheritance that is given by the Father to His Family
You have the authority of your Father and His Surname (you are not merely a servant with no authority!)
There are actually many things to wake up to yourself about and begin to live in a new and more powerful way.
Overcome by your testimony and by His blood
This famous statement in Rev has two components – His blood (meaning His full payment to remove sin and disarm death) and your testimony (meaning your decision to claim His full payment as yours).
In Deut 29:6 it says something I think is important “that you might recognize and know [your dependence on Him Who is saying], I am the Lord your God”. The reason why I want to highlight this sentence is that the world generally does not see it’s sin and therefore it doesn’t see it’s dependance on God to release them from their sin. Without seeing our need, we won’t recognize His offer to release us.
He came and died as a conqueror – of sin – but unless you can see that your sin separates you from God (the source of life) you won’t even know you need a Saviour and you won’t be drawn to Jesus Christ (the Messiah), the Son of God, the absolutely righteous One.
If you doubt at all that He has the power to forgive ALL sins and to take away ALL sickness, take one more look a look at these 3 verses Matt 9:2, 5, 6
v2 And behold, they brought to Him a man paralyzed and prostrated by illness, lying on a sleeping pad; and when Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralyzed man, Take courage, son; your sins are forgiven and the penalty remitted.
v5 For which is easier: to say, Your sins are forgiven and the penalty remitted, or to say, Get up and walk?
v6 But in order that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins and remit the penalty, He then said to the paralyzed man, Get up! Pick up your sleeping pad and go to your own house.
I think many will accept He can release us from sin, but many will doubt He can simply release us from the penalty (sickness). Don’t doubt. In Matt 10:13 it says “freedom from all the distresses that are experienced as the result of sin” and I really like the way that sounds, don’t you?