#36. God's Word Helps Us to Recognize Who Jesus Is
“You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal
life; it is these that testify about Me;
So far in this series we have looked at what the Word of God is, and our recent studies havefocused on what it does. A consideration of these things should certainly motivate us toread the Bible, or else we should examine the condition of our hearts before the Lord! Weare going to conclude the series by considering preaching more particularly, as anencouragement to us all to make sure we not only read God's Word but also hear itpreached whenever we have opportunity.This week, though, we will look at one final thing that the Word of God does that is mostimportant: it helps us recognize Who Jesus is. In our text, Jesus rebukes the Jews becausethey possessed the Scriptures and yet they did not recognize the Messiah when He came."These are the Scriptures that testify about me", He says.The fact is that even without having the New Testament (like the Jews of Jesus' day), youcould know exactly where Messiah would be born, what He would be like, what He would do,how He would die, rise and ascend to heaven, and that through His life and His sacrifice hewould earn righteousness for His people, save them from Hell, purchase the gift of the HolySpirit for them and welcome them into His eternal kingdom at the end of the age.The whole Bible is written so that we may know without doubt that Jesus is the Christ. Itwas written over 1600 years by perhaps 40 authors and yet it has one theme and onepurpose - to point to Christ. In the Old Testament Jesus and His work are anticipated:
through prophecy (place of birth, virgin birth, ancestry (Son of God and son of man), nature of ministry, manner and purpose of death, resurrection, ascension and so on -it is a long list!),
reflected in the lives of individuals like Melchizedek, Moses, Joseph, David and manyothers - another long list!
Displayed through events (water flowing from a rock, the manna coming fromheaven, the bronze serpent that Moses made and lifted up, Jacob's ladder that reached toheaven, the tabernacle furniture and ceremonies and so on - again, a long list)
Appearing as "The Angel of the Lord" in several accounts throughout the OldTestament, to Joshua, to the parents of Sampson, to Gideon (to name but three).In the New Testament we see Jesus born and fulfill not just some of these prophecies, typesand shadows, but every last one of them! No wonder He rebuked the Jews - He had been