What if Jesus…
What if Jesus really was who He said He was?
What if Jesus really did all the things the New Testament Gospels tell us He did?
What if Jesus really did die on a cross in our place?
What if Jesus really did walk out of that tomb on the third day?
What if all these things are true?
Who did Jesus say He was?
He said “I and the father are one,” “If you have seen me, then you have seen the father,” He said, “Before Abraham was, I AM.” He called Himself the Son of Man and admitted to being, or allowed Himself to be called the Messiah, the Christ, and the Holy One of God.
I have talked with people and read about people who say that Jesus never claimed to be God. This results from a false reading of the New Testament Gospels. When in John 8:58 Jesus says that “before Abraham was born, I am” He is telling the crowd that He is the Great “I AM” from the book of Exodus and the story of the burning bush. Right there, He is saying that He is the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. And that is not the only time He uses the term “I Am” to describe Himself.
Jesus is even more clear in John 10:30 when He says, “I and the father are one.” Later in John 14:9 Jesus tells Philip “…Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father.” I don’t know how much clearer He could have been.
The whole reason the Pharisees wanted to kill Jesus was that He claim to be God.
Did Jesus do all the things the Gospels claim He did?
If Jesus did not do all the miracles written about Him in the Gospels, then we would never have heard about them. You see, all four Gospels were written and circulated within living memory of those who witnessed the events described in them. If the Gospels were full of lies and distortions, then they would have been discounted as garbage and the writers discredited. We would never have seen any of the New Testament books, let alone the Gospels.
Did Jesus really die on a cross in our place?
First off the Romans were very good at their job. If Jesus was nailed to that cross after having been beaten to within an inch of His life, then He did die on it. Again, we have the Gospel accounts either written from eye witness reports or, in the case of John, his own witness since he was present. Not only do we have the Gospels accounts of the crucifixion, but there are other writers of the period who recorded the events and wrote about a certain Jesus who was crucified.
Again, we have to remember that all the Gospels, in fact all of the New Testament was written during the lifetimes of those who witnessed the events, probably before A.D. 70 when the Temple and Jerusalem was destroyed by the Romans.
As for whether or not Jesus died for us on that cross, we have His own words in Matthew 20:28, “…just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” Later on in Matthew 26:28 at the last supper, He said, “This is my blood of the new covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.”
Jesus went willingly to the cross to give Himself as a sacrifice for the sins of the world, for if you read the books of the law in the Old Testament each and every sin must be paid for with a blood sacrifice. Jesus was that sacrifice for us.
Jesus, talking about His life and upcoming death and resurrection, tells us in John 10:18, “No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again.”
Aside from what He tells us in the Gospel accounts, we Christians take it on faith that Jesus took our sins upon Himself and the proof of that faith is what happened three days later.
Did Jesus really walk out of the tomb three days later?
Again we have to go back to the fact that the Gospels were written within living memory. If Jesus had not risen from the grave as the Gospel writers claimed then no one would have believed them. The Bible tells us that there were over 500 witnesses who had seen the risen Jesus after He died and was buried.
Think about this, scripture and early church writings tell us that almost all of the Disciples of Jesus were tortured and killed for their belief in Jesus as the Christ who rose from the dead. Not one of them recanted their belief in a resurrected Christ. A person may die for a lie if they think it’s the truth, but who in their right mind would let themselves be tortured and killed for something they knew was a lie?
As Paul says in 1 Corinthians 15:17, “And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins!”
If Jesus did not rise from the grave, there would be NO Christian Church.
If all these things I have talked about are true, then what are you doing about it?
If Jesus really lived, was really who He said He was, if He really did all the things the Gospels said He did, if He did die on that cross for you and for me, and if He did rise on the third day; then don’t you think you had better pay attention to the things He said?
I don’t have the time or the space to go into all the reasons to believe the truth of the Bible and others have done a far better job of it then I ever could. But when I really started to think of who Jesus is and what He did, then I would have truly been a fool not to want to know Him and try to understand His word and what He wants of me.
There is a question that Jesus asked of the Disciples in Matthew 16:15-16,
15 “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?”16 Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”
We must ALL answer that question for ourselves.
Who do you say that Jesus is?
If your answer is the same as that of Peter’s, then that answer will affect the rest of your life and beyond.
If Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of the living God as Peter says He is, then you must live your life according to that truth.
When I came to that reality, I knew that I would never be happy unless I was doing what He wanted me to do. And I knew that I wanted to learn all I could about Him, and that started with His Book, the Bible.
If you want to know more about my reasons for believing and how I came to believe, then read my book, “Christ in my life; Called to Wake the Churches.”
If you need more proofs that the Bible is to be believed then I suggest reading, “I don’t have enough Faith to be an atheist.”
May God bless you in your walk with Him and may He open your mind to the truth of His word.