Monday, January 05, 2015

Who Is The Greatest?

Jesus is more than an ordinary man.

John 3:30-36  He must become greater and greater, and I must become less and less.  31  "He has come from above and is greater than anyone else. We are of the earth, and we speak of earthly things, but He has come from heaven and is greater than anyone else.  32  He testifies about what He has seen and heard, but how few believe what He tells them!

33  Anyone who accepts His testimony can affirm that God is true.  34  For He is sent by God. He speaks God's words, for God gives Him the Spirit without limit.  35  The Father loves His Son and has put everything into His hands.  36  And anyone who believes in God's Son has eternal life. Anyone who doesn't obey the Son will never experience eternal life but remains under God's angry judgment."

If you go through the Bible or the world history books you will find some pretty amazing men have walked on this planet. Great men have come and gone but the baby born in a manger changes everything. All of a sudden the legacy of greatness that so many men have had all looks like nothing in comparison.

There have been pharaohs and kings that have built huge empires, there have been civil right leaders that have shown great compassion, and there have been great writers, theologians and philosophers that have given us some deep thinking.
The Time magazine "100 Most Significant Figures in History" include these men in the top ten:
1. Jesus
2. Napoleon
3. Muhammad
4. William Shakespeare
5. Abraham Lincoln
6. George Washington
7. Adolf Hitler
8. Aristotle
9. Alexander the Great
10. Thomas Jefferson
These days we glorify great athlete's and pay huge sums of money for the privilege of being in the same building with them. I think that we don't realize that we are implying that they are great by our willingness to give them our money.

Do you remember the one athlete that told us over and over again that he is the greatest?

Muhammad Ali isn't even on the Time magazine list of 100 Most Significant Figures in History. That should seem ridiculous to anyone that really believed the things that he said about himself.

It seems that his words did not convince us. If you look up Muhammad Ali quotes you will find that he said:

"At home I am a nice guy: but I don't want the world to know. Humble people, I've found, don't get very far."

"My only fault is that I don't realize how great I really am."

Where is he today? I had to look him up on the internet to see if he is still alive. They say he is.

In this study of the book of John I have seen that John has been giving a great amount of evidence to prove that Jesus is the Son of God. After John spent three years with Jesus we should be interested in his opinion of Jesus and why he came to believe in who Jesus is. It is only the end of chapter three and the evidence is overwhelmingly in favor of proving John's thesis.

Why is Jesus so great?

Jesus has a heavenly origin

Jesus is from heaven he's the greatest, superior to everything else. He is the only man that has experienced having a home in heaven. That should make us consider what he says it takes to live there with him. (John 1:18, 17:5)

Jesus has a heavenly message

Jesus has talked to God and he has come with God's message, he has told us about what he has seen and heard but we think that we know better than this heavenly eyewitness. (John 8:26-28, 15:15)

Jesus has the Holy Spirit

I recently wondered if Jesus had the Holy Spirit in him in pretty much the same way that we do. After studying these scriptures it seems clear to me that God the Son had God the Holy Spirit within him. The Holy Spirit within Jesus gave him wisdom that an ordinary man wouldn't have, Jesus being fully human relied on the Holy Spirit and he demonstrated for us how to live with the Holy Spirit in control. (Isaiah 11:2-5, 42:1, Luke 4:18, John 1:32)

Jesus has heavenly authority

The creator of the universe didn't look like he had authority when he was beaten and crucified but three days later we learn the truth. Jesus told his disciples in the great commission that he had all authority and since he just came back to life I think that all of them were sure that he did. Jesus came to redeem, defend and to save us and he proved that he has the power and authority to do it. (Matthew 28:18, John 5:22-27, 13:3, 17:2, Ephesians 1:20-22)
Jesus is not just a good teacher, good teachers don't claim to be God.

Jesus is not just a good example, good examples don't run around with sinners, drunks and tax collectors.

Jesus is not a religious paranoid, a fanatic. Mad men don't speak those words, mad men don't have those clear thoughts and mad men don't show that kind of love.

Jesus is not a religious phony, phonies don't rise from the dead.

Jesus is not a phantom, you don't nail a phantom to a cross and it doesn't have blood to shed.

Jesus is not a myth, myths don't set the calendars for history.

Jesus is God in a body come to this world to show us what God was like and then to redeem us. He's God.
Who is the greatest? The book of John makes it obvious. Jesus is the "God-man." Jesus came with a great purpose. Jesus showed us a better way to live and he gave us the only way to live forever with him.

Who is your Savior? Is it you? You don't make a very good savior, you don't have the credentials that Jesus has. Based on the testimony of the men that were with Jesus everyday for three years I can accept the fact that Jesus is God, he spoke the words of God, and he was sent to be my Savior.

Thank you Lord for revealing yourself to man and making our relationship a peaceful one. I could never have peace with you without the work of your son on the cross.