Tuesday, March 08, 2016

Christ as Prophet

One of the major designations applied to Jesus Christ throughout the Gospels is that of prophet. Both Christ Himself and the people of His day use this title to describe Him. In this role Christ not only fulfilled previous prophecy in the Old Testament concerning Himself, but He also Himself fulfilled the duties of a prophet.

In each of the Gospels, Christ identifies Himself as a prophet.
“And they were offended in him. But Jesus said unto them, A prophet is not without honor, save in his own country, and in his own house” (Matthew 13:57). “But Jesus said unto them, A prophet is not without honor, but in his own country, and among his own kin, and in his own house” (Mark 6:4). “And he said, Verily I say unto you, No prophet is accepted in his own country” (Luke 4:24). “For Jesus himself testified, that a prophet hath no honor in his own country” (John 4:44). The people perceived Christ as a prophet by His miraculous works, by His authoritative teaching, and during His triumphal entry into Jerusalem. This in and of itself was a fulfillment of various Old Testament prophecies. Moses had prophesied in Deuteronomy 18:15-19 that Jesus would be a prophet. Samuel had prophesied that the Messiah would be a prophet (Acts 3:24). Isaiah had made a similar prophesy in in Isaiah 61:1-2.

So, what did Jesus prophesy? He made predictions concerning His death (Matthew 20:18-19; Mark 10:32-34; Luke 9:22; 18:31-34). He promised that the Holy Spirit would come (John 14:16). He predicted both the future destruction of the temple and of Jerusalem. He also prophesied regarding the coming tribulation and His second coming.

Why did Jesus prophesy? He was sent as God’s messenger.
“And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth” (John 1:14). “Jesus answered them, I told you, and ye believed not: the works that I do in my Father's name, they bear witness of me” (John 10:25).

What does this mean for my life?
Christ represents God to man; therefore, His teachings concern God. In order for me to better understand God, I must understand Christ’s teachings. Since Christ is a prophet, I must heed His words. Also, as I know more about Jesus, I am able to better tell others about Him.

Christ’s office as prophet has been clearly established, by His own testimony, by the testimony of His contemporaries, and by the Scripture record itself. His claim to that office was validated by His prophecies which came to pass, the miracles that He worked, and His authoritative teaching. As a believer, it is important to recognize this office of Christ and thus in reverential obedience heed His word and carry it out in daily living. For that believer will be like the wise man Christ Himself described in Matthew 7:24-25, “Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: and the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.”

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