I. THE OPINIONS THAT PEOPLE HAD CONCERNING JESUS.
A. John the baptist.
C. One of the old prophets had risen again.
1. What these opinions showed.
a. That there was something special and unique about Jesus.
b. He was no ordinary man.
c. They classified Him as one of the prophets of God.
b. John was a prophet, Elijah was a prophet, they thought that Jesus must be a prophet also.
2. The works that He did forced them to believe that He was somehow related to the supernatural.
a. Nicodemus said, "We know that you are a teacher come from God, for no man can do these miracles that you do except God be with him."
b. Other Pharisee's however accused Him of being in league with Beelzebub the prince of devils.
D. The opinions that people have today.
1. He was a master teacher.
2. He was a great philosopher.
3. He was a good man.
4. Men today seek to remove Him from the category of supernatural.
a. They seek to dismiss His miracles as quite natural events but only thought to be miracles because of the superstition of the people.
b. When He told the disciples to cast the nets on the other side of the ship, He could see the fish in the water because He was on higher ground and could observe what the disciples could not see being on the water.
c. When He raised the daughter of Jarius from the dead, she really was not dead, but only in a coma, and Jesus recognized that fact.
E. The inconsistency of this position without the admission that He was the Son of God.
1. He was all these things, a master teacher, a great philosopher, a good man, but much more, He was the Son of God.
2. If you are not willing to acknowledge the last, then you cannot believe the first.
a. He claimed to be the only begotten Son of God. "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son."
b. He claimed that He was sent by His Father God into the world. "For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved."
c. He claimed to be a full representation of God.
"He that hath seen Me, hath seen the Father."
d. He claimed equality with God. "I and the Father are One."
e. He claimed to be the only way to the Father. "I am the way, the truth and the life, no man cometh to the Father but by Me."
f. He claimed that if you lived and believed in Him, you would never die. "He that liveth and believeth in Me, shall never die."
3. If these statements are not true, then He is either a colossal liar, or He was mentally deranged. If He were not Messiah, the Son of God,
a. He was not a master teacher, but a master deceiver.
b. He was not a great philosopher, but a great liar.
c. He was not a good man, but an evil man, a fraud
d. Are you willing to say that Jesus is a deceiver, a liar, a deceiver and a fraud?
e. This is exactly what you are saying if you do not believe that He is the Son of God.
II. THE PROMISES OF THE MESSIAH.
A. When Peter answered the question of Jesus, "Who do you say that I am?" with the words, "You are the Christ of God." the word Christ is the anglicized form of the Greek word Christos which is the Greek word for the Hebrew word Messiach. The word in Hebrew means anointing. It was in reference to the anointing of the king with oil to inaugurate his reign. Thus it is acknowledging that Jesus is the Messiah is to acknowledge Him as King.
1. You remember how David was anointed with oil by Samuel, to signify that God had now chosen him to reign over Israel.
2. Concerning king Saul we read,
Then Samuel took a vial of oil, and poured [it] upon his head, and kissed him, and said, [Is it] not because the LORD hath anointed thee [to be] captain over his inheritance?
3. The Messiah was the anointed one, that is the One that God had anointed to be king over the earth.
4. The Messiah was to establish the kingdom of God upon the earth. It was to be a kingdom of righteous, joy, and peace.
5. The Messiah was to be born in Bethlehem of a virgin, He would be despised and rejected by men. He would be meek and lowly, making His entry on a donkey. He would be betrayed by a friend for thirty pieces of silver, beaten, buffeted and spit upon. He would be crucified between two thieves, but buried in a rich man's tomb.
6. The prophecies of the Messiah seemed to be totally contradictory
a. There were many that told of His glorious reign and the splendor of His kingdom.
b. There were others that spoke of His being despised and rejected and slain.
7. When Peter said, "You are the Messiah of God." He and the other disciples were thinking about the power and glory in which the Messiah would reign.
a. Jesus began to tell them about being rejected of the elders and be slain, but rising the third day.
b. Peter who had become the spokesman for the group began to rebuke Jesus for talking like that.
8. At the revelation of His being the Messiah, Jesus spoke of four main things.
a. His being rejected.
b. His being crucified.
c. His rising again from the dead.
d. His coming again in glory with the holy angels. vs26
III. WHAT DIFFERENCE DOES IT MAKE OF WHAT I THINK OF JESUS? WHO I SAY HE IS?
A. The difference between life and death.
1. He that believeth on the Son hath life, he that believeth not the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abideth upon Him.
2. This is reference to spiritual life, which is to live in fellowship with God, and comes by being born again. Having a spiritual birth.
a. The Bible teaches that man's spirit is dead because of his trespasses and sins.
b. The Bible teaches that God is a Spirit, and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth.
c. You cannot really know God, or worship Him in truth until you have been born of the Spirit.
d. You are born again by believing that Jesus is the Messiah, and that His death was God's sacrifice for your sins.
B. The difference between losing your life or saving it. Jesus is talking of your eternal destiny which is to be saved in heaven, or lost in hell.
1. I know that hell is a four letter word, that those who are always using four letter words would like to see banned.
2. They don't want to be reminded of their destiny.
3. Scoff at the idea, deny it's existence, you do not change the facts nor the scripture.
4. You say that you do not believe in a God that would send a man to hell.
a. God does not send men there, they go there by their own choice.
b. God did everything to keep men from going there, even to sending His own Son to die for man's sin so that he would not be forced to send men there.
c. To go there you must trample under foot the Son of God. He sort of lies at the gate to hinder your entering and you must trample Him under your foot, and count the blood that He shed for your sins an unholy thing, and do despite to His Spirit of grace, who daily is speaking to your heart encouraging you to a better way of life, urging you to receive Jesus as your Messiah and Lord.
d. You can be lost if you want to, it is not easy, it takes a lot of determination on your part, you must be stubborn and resistant all the way.
5. Not one man in hell today can say, "Why did God send me here?" They are all there by their choice to live in sin and reject Jesus as Messiah, the One who died to save them from their sins.
C. There is more than just believing that Jesus is the Messiah, there is the accepting of Him personally as your Messiah or King.
Surrendering your life to be ruled by Him.