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Life of Christ

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Copyrighted © 2016 John Monyjok Maluth

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Shakespir Edition

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Discipleship Press

Website: www.discipleshippress.com

Email: [email protected]

 

P.O. Box 30870, Nairobi Kenya

Shakespir Edition, License Notes

 

Thank you for downloading this free ebook. Although this is a free book, it remains the copyrighted property of the author, and may not be reproduced, copied and distributed for commercial or non-commercial purposes. If you enjoyed this book, please encourage your friends to download their own copy at Shakespir.com, where they can also discover other works by this author. Thank you for your support.

Table of Contents

Introduction to the Life of Christ

Unit 1: The Thirty Years of Preparation

Unit 2: The Year of Beginnings

Unit 3: The Year of Gathering Crowds

Unit 4: The Year of Increasing Opposition

Unit 5: The Passion Week

Unit 6: The Forty Days

Consulted Works

Introduction to Life of Christ

Welcome to the Life of Christ course. This is a theological study course. The course will take two weeks using the modular format.

As you might have known, the Life of our Lord Jesus Christ cannot be studied in two weeks. It is a lifelong journey for each one of us to travel! We can agree with one of the well known scholars when he wrote:

The limitations of space forbid a detailed consideration of all the words and actions of Christ Jesus. We shall therefore confine ourselves to the high points, tracing the development of His ministry, and describing the great crises of His life. Instead of using a microscope, so to speak, to scrutinize minutely, we shall use the telescope to view the ‘mountain peaks’ of the life of the Master. The narrative will be studied according to the above mentioned units – (Pearl Myer 2011:3).

What comes to your mind when you heard about the course, “Life of Christ”? What are your expectations about the course? How do you feel about it personally?

No wonder, the Bible says, “Anyone who claims to live in him must live as Jesus did” (1 John 2:6).

We are studying the Life of Christ because we are required to live as he did. But, how can we live like Jesus if we have no idea how he lived 2000 years ago?

This is the reason you are studying this important theological course. We are going to look at Jesus’ earthly life and ministry as narrated by the first eyewitnesses.

Our world is ever changing. Today, people ask whether there was really a man called Jesus Christ 2000 years ago. This question did not exist before the nineteen century.

But now it came up. People began to doubt about Jesus. Some people tried to create many fake stories of him!

However, the gospel records are trustworthy! The reporters of our Master are in a good balance. Two of the writers were his closest followers.

The other two did their best research about the things that had happened amongst them. We all have the reasons to trust the gospel records about the life and teachings of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.

If you are not yet a believer in Christ Jesus, I ask you to make a decision now! You will not understand this course unless you are part of God’s family, and you can be one right now. It is up to you to make up your mind.

If you have made this eternal decision, then you are welcome! This course will help you learn a lot about who Jesus was. You will follow him if you love his lifestyle and teachings. You will imitate him for the rest of your life. Come! Let us begin the journey now!

Unit 1: The Thirty Years of Preparation

Under this unit, we will look at; the birth of John the Baptizer, the birth of Christ, the reception of Christ child and the childhood of Jesus Christ.

Between the two biblical testaments, there were about 400 years of silence. No prophecies and there were no prophets. The last prophet in the Old Testament was Malachi and the first prophet in the New Testament was John the Baptizer. As one writer made it clear:

We may well describe the prophecy of Malachi as the farewell message of Old Testament prophecy, for there followed a period of four hundred years when the voice of a living prophet was not heard. The prophets had delivered their message in full, and now the time had come for the nation to study and distribute their writings. (Myer 2011:6).

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p<>{color:#000;}. The birth of John the Baptizer (Luke 1:1-25, 57:80)

The birth of John the Baptizer was another moment in history for the beginning of another era of prophecy – New Testament. John the Baptizer was the sign/type of the Old Prophet named Elijah in many ways. The same author said:

In the first two chapters of Luke’s Gospel, the Holy Spirit is mentioned seven times, and is described as inspiring many chosen individuals with the spirit of prophecy. Thus we learn that there was a special outpouring of the Spirit before the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ – a sign that the Old Testament prophecy was being revived. (Myer 2011:6).

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p<>{color:#000;}. The birth of The Christ (Matthew 1:18-25; Luke 2:1-7)

The birth of Jesus Christ was announced by an angel named Gabriel to both Mary the mother and Joseph the earthly father. It’s also true that: “God decreed that his son be born of a human mother in order that he might live a complete human life”. (Myer 2011:7).

The word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory (John 1:14), and God was and is reconciling the world to himself in Christ Jesus (2 Corinthians 5:19).

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p<>{color:#000;}. The reception of the Christ child (Matthew 2; Luke 2)

When Jesus was born as promised by God, many different things happened. He was adored by the humble and poor shepherds outside the city (Luke 2:8-20), he was welcomed by Jewish saints such as Simeon and Anna (Luke 2:21-38), he was sought and worshipped by gentile scholars, known as wise men from the east (Matthew 2:1-12).

But Jesus was also ignored by Jewish priests and scholars (Matthew 2:4-6), he was persecuted by the Israel’s king, according to Matthew 2:13-18, and he was sheltered in a gentile land to fulfil what the prophet said, “Out of Egypt, I called my son (Hosea 11:1).

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p<>{color:#000;}. The childhood of Jesus Christ (Luke 2:39-52)

After their escape to Egypt, Jesus, Mary and Joseph came back to Israel after Herod the king died. But because of fear of Herod’s son who was king by then, they chose to stay in Galilee at the small town known as Nazareth.

This is also to fulfil a prophecy that he had to bring light to the despised land of Galilee (Isaiah 9:1). The Gospel of Luke is the only gospel record that tells us more about the early childhood of Jesus Christ.

Luke tells us that Jesus visited Jerusalem when he was about 12 years of age, followed by another 18 years of silence. There twelve plus eighteen makes 30 years and Luke says that Jesus started his ministry when he was about 30 years of age.

Jesus in those years “Increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men” before he could started his public ministry.

What can we learn from these four points in this first unit? Class discussion is needed here.

Unit 2: The Year of Beginnings

Under this unit, we will discuss about, the ministry of John the Baptist, the baptism of Jesus by John, the three temptations of Jesus and their meanings to us, the choosing of the first disciples/students, the first miracle of Jesus, the clash with religious leaders, the interview with a Jewish scholar and finally, the awakening in Samaria.

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p<>{color:#000;}. The ministry of John the Baptist (Matthew 3:1-12; Mark 1:1-8; Luke 3:1-20)

As we have seen, Jesus grew up in Galilee in the north, while John the Baptist was in Judea in the far south of the nation.

Jesus was silent in the north, but at the same time, John was busy doing his work in Judea, baptizing people in the Jordan River for the forgiveness of their sins and as a sign of repentance.

John the Baptizer was indeed the voice of the one calling in the desert according to the scriptures. He even baptized Jesus, the sinless man on earth just to fulfil his mission as we shall see below.

His success was instant and widespread. From all over the land came the humble followers of Jehovah, who had been praying and waiting for the kingdom, and penitent sinners, among those whom were the tax collectors and prostitutes.

But the religious leaders refused to submit to John’s baptism, and probably denounced it as ‘emotionalism’ and ‘fanaticism’ according to Matthew 21:23, 31 and 32. (Myer 2011:16).

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p<>{color:#000;}. The baptism of Jesus (Matthew 3:13-17; Mark 1:9-11; Luke 3:21, 22)

As mentioned earlier, Jesus was baptized in the Jordan River by John the Baptizer. John was about to refuse doing this, but Jesus told him to complete his mission and work for the glory of God.

Each one of us has his calling that is so unique from other callings of other people. We must also do our work and finish it well, according to the perfect will of God who called us.

The baptism of the Lord had a special meaning in relation to John. Since his was the important office of personally introducing the Messiah to the nation, he must have a positive assurance as to who the Messiah was. Therefore the Lord granted him an infallible sign with which to distinguish the Christ, telling him that when he saw the Holy Spirit coming in visible form and remaining on one he was baptizing in water, that one was the Anointed of God according to John 1:30-33. (Myer 2011:17).

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p<>{color:#000;}. The temptation of Jesus (Matthew 4:1-11; Mark 1:12, 13; Luke 4:1-13)

Jesus even though divine was tempted. He had a human body that thirst and gets hungry. He was tempted of what he needed the most – food. The same temptation of Adam and Eve long ago came to Jesus, but he overcame Satan by the Word of God.

There were three kinds of temptations for Jesus, and he got the right answer for all. The same temptations exist today for Christians all over the world. You can overcome Satan and his cunning temptations only by speaking the truth of the word of God.

Jesus was tempted to use his power selfishly, to fanaticism or tempt God, and he was tempted by Satan to compromise his mission with the world desires of dominion and kingship. Jesus was, is and shall still be the king of the universe.

Who do you think is in charge of the world today? No doubt that many of us believe Satan is in control of the world. This belief is surely not from our minds, but a true lie from Satan himself. God is in control of the world. He is in control even of Satan. He is God and he alone is God.

Christ had stood firmly in the realms of filial trust and submission. Satan now attempted to pervert the desire for world dominion which had been promised to Christ. He could not touch him as a Son; he would spoil him as a King. (Myer 2011:20).

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p<>{color:#000;}. The first disciples (Mt. 4:18-22; Mk. 1:16-20, 2:13; Lk. 5:1-11, 27; Jn 1:35-51)

Jesus did not just start doing his work on earth alone. After winning the test of the greatest temptation of all, he gathered to himself some men he trusted. After that, he stated his mission on earth. “John the Baptist did not forget that his mission was to point men to Christ. One day when he saw Christ passing, he said to two of his converts, ‘Behold the Lamb of God’”. (Myer 2011:21).

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p<>{color:#000;}. The first miracle (John 2:1-11)

Jesus’ first miracle was changing water into wine. You may ask, why did Jesus change water into wine and as Christians, we know that wine is not good? Well, that’s a very good question to ask. But we should look at the reasons why Jesus did this. Myer put it this way:

The main purpose of the recording of this incident was to show that this first manifestation of the Lord’s miraculous power confirmed the faith of his disciples in his divine mission. He ‘revealed his glory (divine character) and his disciples put their faith in him. (2011:22).

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p<>{color:#000;}. The first clash with the religious leaders (John 2:13-22)

Jesus never had any problem with the audience – the normal Jewish people, but with religious leaders of his day. Truth is always painful and Jesus admitted he is truth himself. The world denies truth. Even in our day and age, there is a belief that there is nothing called ‘absolute truth’ because each of us has his/her own truth. Jesus spoke and lived the truth. He taught the truth about God, humankind and creation.

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p<>{color:#000;}. Interview with a Jewish Scholar (John 2:23 – 3:1-21)

Jesus is rejected by many Jews today. Why? Because they do not believe he was who he said he was. They believe to accept him if their leaders did accept Jesus those days. But the truth is; only those born of God could believe in Jesus.

Only those who love God can love Jesus because Jesus is God. The conversation between Jesus and Nicodemus shows that there were some Jewish leaders who also believed in Jesus, but they fear the other Jewish leaders; therefore, they never show up their following.

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p<>{color:#000;}. The awakening in Samaria (John 4:4-42)

Samaria was a city north of Judea between Judah and Galilee. The people in that town were believed to have mixed faiths. The Jews in the south think they are religious and godly. The Jews despised the Samaritans.

But Jesus’ ministry was not a religious ministry. It was, is and shall always be the ministry of God’s love towards the sinful world. Jesus came for the rejected ones. He came for sinners who are willing to repent.

He came with a new law of love called the gospel. His message is good news to his hearers. God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship him in spirit and truth.

Unit 3: The Year of Gathering Crowds

Under this unit, we will look at, the message of Christ, the Sermon on the Mount, teaching in parables, the miracles of Christ and finally, the call and mission of the apostles. What are the substance and the authority of the message of Christ?

What is the purpose and classification of Jesus’ teaching in parables? What are the themes and outlines of the Sermon on the Mount? We will also look at the credentials of Christ’s miracles, signs and the outflows of his personality in miracles.

We will look at the purpose of the calling of his disciples, their mission on earth, their number and their perfect instructions from the Lord.

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p<>{color:#000;}. The message of Christ

Jesus Christ the Son of God came to earth from heaven with one great message. The message is clear and simple. It is all about the love of God for humanity and his entire creation. Christ is the prophet, priest and king. His message was about the kingdom of God and the nature of God.

God is the loving father who cares for his creation and especially, human beings. His message is the message of mankind’s complete salvation. Jesus’ teaching concerning life is all about God and other human beings around us.

Jesus, being God himself could not use the term, “Thus says the Lord”, meaning he had the full authority to speak as God does. The other teachers/rabbis and scribes only quoted what was written in the holy book. But Jesus was different.

He taught with much authority than any of the teachers of his day just because he was God in a human form.

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p<>{color:#000;}. The sermon on the mount

These are the key principles of the Kingdom of God made clear by the King himself. These are the laws of the kingdom, the kind of people of such a kingdom, how to enter in such a kingdom and many other things.

The relation between the kingdom and the laws of Moses are discussed here. What are the characteristics of a member of the kingdom of God? Read Mt. 5:1-16 to get the answer.

Jesus went ahead and talked of the morality (Mt. 5:17-48). This includes murder versus anger, adultery versus lust, marriage for life versus divorce, oaths and affirmation, retaliation versus forbearance, then finally hatred versus love.

All these are the things needed in the kingdom of God. He went on about righteousness (Mt. 6:1-18), possessions (Mt. 6:19-34), attitudes (Mt. 7:1-12), and then the application of all these teachings into one’s daily life (Mt. 7:13-27). Jesus also taught in parables.

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p<>{color:#000;}. Teaching in parables

During Jesus’ day and even before that time, people in Israel and other areas used parables to communicate their important messages.

But Jesus’ parables had certain meanings and purposes. They were not like any other parables. We can divide Jesus’ parables into 7 different groups according to Pearl Myer.

  1. There are parables illustrating the development of the kingdom such as recorded in Matthew 13, Mark 4, Luke 8, (The Sower). The weeds as in Matthew 13, the Mustard Seed in Matthew 13, Mark 4 and Luke 13. The Parable of the Yeast in Matthew 13; Luke 13; the Hidden Treasure in Matthew 13.

  1. There are parables dealing with the wealth – Such as the rich fool in Luke 12 and the shrewd manager in Luke 16.

  1. There are parables about prayer – such as the Pharisee and the Tax Collective in Luke 18; the friend at midnight in Luke 11 and the unrighteous judge in Luke 18.

  1. There are parables revealing God’s grace – such as the lost sheep in Matthew 18; Luke 18; the lost coin in Luke 15 and the prodigal Son in Luke 15, and the Good Shepherd in John 10.

  1. There are parables about brotherhood – such as the unforgiving servant as recorded in Matthew 18, Good Samaritan in Luke 10, and then the rich man and Lazarus in Luke 16.

  1. There are also parables of service – such as workers in the vineyard in Matthew 20; the two debtors in Luke 7; the talents in Matthew 25, the pounds in Luke 19 and the uncompleted tower and the rash warfare in Luke 14.

$7. There are parables of judgment – such as the barren fig tree in Matthew 24; Luke 13; and Luke 21. The parable of the two sons in Matthew 21; the wicked tenants in Matthew 21, Mark 12 and Luke 20.

One of them is parable of the great banquet in Luke, the king’s marriage feast in Matthew 22, the ten virgins in Matthew 25, the ambitious guest in Luke 14, the unwatchful servants in Matthew 24, and the parable of the sheep and the goats in Matthew 25. These are all under this category.

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p<>{color:#000;}. The miracles of Christ

One author pointed it out by saying that, “Considering the miracle of his birth and of his spiritual endowment, it would have been a miracle if he had not performed miracles” (Myer 2011:31).

What a true statement! Jesus performed many miraculous signs according to one of the reporters and these signs have a point – pointing people to God.

Miracles were “credentials of the Lord giving evidence of his Messiah-ship. They were signs revealing Christ’s true nature and mission according to the Apostle John. And they were the natural out-flowing of his personality revealing his compassion for man” – (Myer 2011:31-32).

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p<>{color:#000;}. The call and mission of apostles

The mission of the apostles is important. Jesus chose his disciples to be with him. He can send them out to preach the good news of the kingdom with a demonstration of power. The number of the disciples tells the seriousness of Jesus’ ministry of his nation.

His national campaign was signified by the number of the twelve apostles. The instruction of the apostles was simple. They only proclaimed that the kingdom is at hand. The Messiah was to bring back and restore Israel (Isaiah 49:5, 6; Matthew 19:28).

Unit 4: The Year of Increasing Opposition

In this unit, we are going to look at many items. We will look at Christ’s ministry being opposed, John the Baptist’s query, Christ’s accusation of his generation, the parables of the kingdom, the crisis in Galilee; the rejected Messiah foretells his own death, the transfiguration and finally the darkening shadow of the cross.

These lessons are taken directly from Pearl Myer’s book – (The Life and Teachings of Christ).

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p<>{color:#000;}. Christ’s ministry opposed

As we have seen earlier, Jesus was always having problems with religious leaders of his day. As he and his disciples started their ministry, many religious leaders of the Jews were not happy with their serious work.

They thought Jesus was starting a new religion that will replace the true religion of the Jews. They saw him as their true enemy while he was not. They even accused him of performing miracles by the power of Satan – Matthew 12:24-37.

Jesus was not understood by his relatives and friends as well, according to these passages Mark 3:21, 31; John 7:3-5.

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p<>{color:#000;}. John the Baptist’s Query (Mt. 11:1-15; Lk. 7:18-23)

Even John the Baptist himself doubted whether this was the Christ of whom the people were waiting for or they should expect someone else to come. This was because the thoughts of many Jews were that the Messiah will be the deliverer of the political Israelite nation.

Jesus, instead of arguing, he told those sent by John to go back and tell him what they have seen and heard Jesus was doing. These acts of Jesus explain fully that he was the Messiah. What were those acts? See the references above.

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p<>{color:#000;}. Christ’s accusation of his generation (Mt. 11:16-27)

Jesus grieved because the people rejected his perfect message instead of them receiving it with gladness. The human nature is the same everywhere every time because they always act the opposite way.

But also, Jesus rejoices when his message was heard and accepted by his audience. All things have been committed into the hands of the Son of God (Matthew 11:27).

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p<>{color:#000;}. The Parables of the Kingdom (Matthew 13)

As one author made it clear:

The fierce opposition from the Jewish leaders led Jesus to change his method of teaching. He began to teach the truths concerning his kingdom exclusively in the form of parables (Myer 2011: 41).

According to the same writer, a parable may be defined as an earthly story or illustration with a heavenly or spiritual meaning. Jesus taught with parables to make his points clear.

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p<>{color:#000;}. The Crisis in Galilee (John 6)

Jesus fed the five thousand people which raised the enthusiasm of many people. There is also a story of the great storm and the great sermon. The great storm happened when Jesus’ disciples were crossing to the other side of the lake and Jesus was not with them.

It was Satan’s temptation. Jesus came and joined his disciples and they soon arrived to their destination. That great miracle of feeding five thousand men minus women and children was another temptation to make Jesus into an earthly and political leader.

Because Jesus did not accept the offer of being the earthly king, he was deserted by most of his followers except his close disciples who were later called apostles.

The crowd shifted from one belief to the other. Jesus then put his immediate followers on the test.

He asked them whether they were also willing to leave him or not. Simon also called Peter one of the twelve spoke out for the rest, saying, “To whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life”. Indeed, to the disciples, Jesus was the Christ, the anointed one of God.

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p<>{color:#000;}. The rejected Messiah foretells his death (Mt. 16:13-28; Mk. 8:27-31; LK. 9:22-36)

As we have seen above, Jesus was rejected as Messiah by the crowd of people because he was not the type of the Messiah they expected. The Jews needed a political Messiah who would deliver them from the hands of their enemies.

But Peter announced the eternal truth concerning Jesus. Jesus is indeed the Messiah, which is called Christ of which the Jews were waiting for. At the same time, Jesus predicted his death and Peter denied betraying him.

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p<>{color:#000;}. The transfiguration (Mt. 17:1-8; Mk. 9:2-13; Lk. 9:28-36)

Jesus here prayed about the problem of the cross. He then changed his appearance as the disciples were watching what was happening.

Then the heavenly people, Elijah and Moses appears and the Bible say that these men comforted Jesus concerning his soon coming death, the death on the cross.

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p<>{color:#000;}. The darkening shadow of the cross

Jesus did not want his disciples to be taken by surprise when his trial and death comes. This is why he told them everything before the time.

But his disciples did not understand many of his words until he died and rose again from the death. Peter even denied, saying, he would not betray his Lord, of which he surely did when the time arrived.

Unit 5: The Passion Week

As one of the authors said:

It has been estimated that nearly half the space in each Gospel is occupied with the account of Jesus’ death, with all its accompanying circumstances. This speaks eloquently of the place assigned to the death of Christ by the New Testament writers.

Cleary, they regarded it as the crowning act of his ministry and the very foundation of his gospel. Paul tells us that it was his method to set forth, as in a vivid picture, the death of Christ (Galatians 3:1).

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p<>{color:#000;}. The Jewish council plans Jesus’ death (John 11:41-57)

Just after Jesus raised Lazarus from death, the Jews began to plan to kill Jesus. But they feared the crowd. Even those crowds praised God for the works Jesus were doing.

The religious leaders of the day were hit badly by this popularity of Christ. Even the high priest of the time prophesied without knowing, saying, it was good for one man to die for the sake of the entire nation.

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p<>{color:#000;}. Jesus publicly proclaims himself king (Mt. 21:1-11; Mk. 11:1-11; Lk. 19:29-44; Jh. 12:12-19)

Jesus entered the city of Jerusalem riding on the mule as prophesied long ago by one of the prophets. This brought the accusation that he was stirring the crowds against the rule of Rome, making himself a king of the Jews.

Jesus, even though he had a different kingdom in mind, did not deny himself king of the Jews. He is the king of the universe not only of the Jewish people.

During this time, the other gospel records tell us that Jesus is driven out the business people from the temple, making it clean, a place it supposed to be.

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p<>{color:#000;}. The rulers opposed Christ’s authority (Matthew 21:23 – 23:39)

When the people stopped their claims and excitement, the Jewish religious leaders questioned Jesus about the source of his power and authority.

Jesus, knowing their thoughts answered them using another question. Because they could not tell the truth, Jesus told them that he had no answer to their question too.

Jesus then told them the parable of the judgment. Then the same religious leaders asked Jesus three tough questions just to trap him.

The first two questions were from the Jewish leaders, but one question was asked by Jesus and no one could answer it. The Jews by themselves lack the knowledge about Christ. Jesus then was angry and he began to speak the ‘woes’ against the teachers of the law and the Pharisees.

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p<>{color:#000;}. Christ’s revelation of the future (Mt. 24 – 25; Mk. 13; Lk. 21:5-38)

Jesus spoke about the coming destruction of Jerusalem walls and the temple as the sign of the punishment because he was rejected and killed by his own people. The same people Christ came to save killed him. To prophesy against Jerusalem the holy city of God was a serious crime that deserves stoning to death by the crowd.

This judgment over Jerusalem closed the age of the Law (Luke 21:12-24). This judgment also shows and marks the period between the first and second advents. It also reveals the personal coming of the Lord to judge the church and the nations and close the church age.

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p<>{color:#000;}. The farewell Super (Mt. 26:17-30; Mk. 14:12-26; Lk. 22:7-30; John 13:1-30)

Here Jesus ate the Passover Meal with his disciples in a well prepared place. He sent his disciples to find that special place for celebrating the Passover, giving them some signs. Jesus taught a lesson on humility to his own beloved disciples at that time of the Passover Meal.

He also foretold who to betray him in the near future. Jesus washed the feet of his disciples as a sign of love and humbleness. Indeed, Jesus humbled himself and he became human just to save the lost. Here, Jesus instituted the Christian Passover celebration.

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p<>{color:#000;}. Christ’s Farewell Message (John 13:35 – 17:26)

The message of the farewell is all about the true love of God to all other human beings. His last prayer meeting was recorded in the Gospel of John chapters 17. Jesus here prayed for the first disciples and he then prayed for any future follower. Love is the heart of Jesus’ ministry. Love must be part of our lives because love is the spirit. Love is the nature of God.

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p<>{color:#000;}. The arrest of Christ (Mt. 26:36-56; Mk. 14:26-52; Lk. 22:39-53)

After Jesus left the place of the farewell, he went to Gethsemane with his disciples minus Judas the traitor. Here, Jesus prayed about the will of God to be done. His flesh was not willing but the spirit was willing to do what he came for.

In the same place, the same night, Christ was arrested by the Jewish religious leaders and he was accused of many false things. These Jewish leaders came together with some Roman soldiers to arrest the Lord.

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p<>{color:#000;}. The trial and condemnation of Christ (Mt. 26:57 – 27:25; Mk. 14:53 – 15:19; Lk. 22:66 – 23:24; John 18:19 – 19:16)

The Jewish council known as the Sanhedrin tried Jesus and he was accused of heresy, blasphemy and sacrilege. He was accused of saying he will destroy and rebuilt the temple (sacrilege). Jesus was accused of claiming to be God and the Son of God.

There is only one true God and anyone claiming to be God is worthy of death. His doctrine was seen against the Law of Moses by his Jewish religious leaders.

But all these trials and accuses could not lead to his death. They took him to the Roman Governor by the time and they accused him of making himself a king. This accuse would suggest that Jesus wanted to overthrow the Roman Empire making himself a political leader.

The Roman Governor named Pilate, could see that the Jews were only jealous of Jesus not because he had committed any crime worthy of death. But Jesus was executed later as the Jews demanded his death, even though there were no true evidences of his crimes.

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p<>{color:#000;}. The crucifixion of Christ (Mt. 27:32-61; Mk. 15:21-47; Lk. 23:26-49; John 19:16-42)

When Pilate the Governor accepted the request of the Jewish leaders to crucify Jesus, he gave orders to his soldiers to take Jesus for crucifixion. Jesus then carried his own cross to the place of the crucifixion, but Simon of Cyrene helped him carry the cross.

Jesus was then crucified with an inscription above his head that read, “Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews” but this writing angered the Jewish religious leaders because they thought he only claimed to be king while he was not.

The soldiers showed their apathy of what happened when they were gambling over Jesus’ garments.

But the ladies on the other end showed their sympathy when they were weeping for the Lord. Yet, the religious leaders have shown their antipathy as they mocked him.

They thought if he was Christ, he would have saved himself from the cross. Indeed, Jesus did not come to save himself but to save others.

Jesus spoke some few words on the cross before he died. He prayed and said, Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing. He spoke to one thief who repented and said, I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise.

Jesus spoke to John his disciple and his earthly mother. Jesus cried, saying, my God, my God, why have you forsaken me? Jesus also said, “I am thirsty”.

He also said, “It is finished”. After all these words, Jesus spoke and said, Father, into your hands I commit my spirit and then he died.

Many things happened during and after the crucifixion. The meaning of the cross is very crucial for a Christian life. It was all God’s plan and we can blame no one involved in it.

Since the high court declared Jesus to be worthy of death means it was indeed God’s plan. Christ is the promised deliver and redeemer of mankind. He is indeed the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world.

Unit 6: The Forty Days

One writer puts it this way:

On what ground does Christianity claim to be unique? ‘Other religions have great leaders and noble teachings.’ A Christian and a Muslim were discussing the merits of their respective faiths. The Muslim wanted to know in what sense Christianity was superior to Islam.

The Christian asked, “If you were in doubt about the right road to a certain place, whom would you consult, a corpse or a living man?” The answer was obvious. The religion whose founder rose from the dead, and who lives to guide his followers, must be the true religion.

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p<>{color:#000;}. The truth of the resurrection

When Jesus died, his disciples and other followers lost hope. But when Jesus rose again, the ministry begun. Could all the followers of Jesus falsely admit he rose from the dead? There is no way for hundreds and thousands of people to believe in this kind of a lie.

The truth is that Jesus rose again from the dead according to the scriptures. Jesus is alive and this makes the Christian faith unique. No other religion with a living founder on earth apart from Christianity.

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p<>{color:#000;}. The record of the resurrection

The women who went to check on the body of the Lord found out that the tomb was empty. They also saw angels who spoke the truth of the resurrection to them. These people went and reported these things to the rest of Jesus’ followers and disciples.

Mary was sent by the Lord to tell the disciples of what happened such as recorded in John 20:11-18. The other women also saw the Lord on their way to tell the disciples about the empty tomb (Luke 24:9-11).

Jesus appeared to the other two disciples on their way to Emmaus (Luke 24:13-35). He also appeared to Simon Peter (Luke 24:34; Cor. 15:5).

He appeared to the ten disciples and others (John 21:1-14). Jesus also appeared to the disciples and other friends when he ascended into heaven (Acts 1:4-11). All this means Christ indeed rose from the dead!

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p<>{color:#000;}. The ascension

One author writes and said:

For forty days, Jesus revealed himself to his disciples, appearing and disappearing, as if to lead them gradually to think of him as present in the Spirit though absent in body.

There came a time when the disciples knew that such appearances had ceased and that from then on they were to preach his gospel, confident in his spiritual presence with them, even as he had promised. (Myer 2011:85).

Main textbook used

Pearlman, M. (2011). The Life and Teachings of Christ. East Books: Nairobi, Kenya.

Consulted Works

Charles, P. (2000). Matthew. Christian Focus: Great Britain

Geoffrey, G. (1995). Mark. Christian Focus: Scotland, Britain.

Leon, M. (2000). Luke. Inver-Varsity Press: England.


Life of Christ

  • Author: Discipleship Press
  • Published: 2016-01-29 14:40:09
  • Words: 6050
Life of Christ Life of Christ