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Date: December 20, 2015
Read Jn 4:19-26 While increasingly secularized, Christmas originated to
celebrate the birth of Jesus of Nazareth. The gospel records suggest that His
humble birth caused great excitement for a brief time but that He was shortly
spirited away to Egypt to escape Herod the Greats vendetta against some
unknown King of the Jews. Upon Herods death, Jesus parents returned to
Nazareth. We know almost nothing of the next 30 years. By age 30 he was a
nobody, buried in obscurity in Nazareth, having done nothing to separate
himself from the mass of humanity. Why all the fuss about His birth?
Well, partly because in the remaining 3 years of His life, the obscure carpenter
had more impact on human history than person who ever lived by far. The
evidence of His impact and influence is everywhere -- in every nation, every
religious faith and every cultural medium from the highest of art forms to the
lowest expressions of profanity. Jesus, Beloved, is everywhere!
Someone has noted: Socrates taught for 40 years, Plato for 50, Aristotle for
40, and Jesus for only 3. Yet the influence of Christ's 3-year ministry
infinitely transcends the impact left by the combined 130 years of teaching
from these men who were among the greatest philosophers of all antiquity.
H. G. Wells contends: I am an historian, I am not a believer, but I must
confess as a historian that this penniless preacher from Nazareth is
irrevocably the very center of history. Jesus Christ is easily the most
dominant figure in all history. No wonder all the fuss about His birth, right?
Even more to the point are the claims He made and substantiated by the most
incredible display of authoritative teaching and miraculous power ever
recorded. Joseph Parker commented, Only Christ could have conceived
Christ. His concepts of love, compassion, respect for the individual, and the
power for forgiveness were unprecedented in ancient times. Theyre still at
the heart of Western culture. It has abandoned the foundation for these
standards but cant extricate itself from the concepts. They are entrenched.
But Jesus uniqueness extends even further. Historian Huston Smith claimed in
The Worlds Great Religions the two most dominant figures in history who
lived lives of such beauty that people asked not just Who are you? but
What are you? were Buddha and Jesus. But he further notes that while

Buddha distained worship by saying, Absolutely, do not worship me. I am

not God, Jesus did just the opposite. Jesus staked a credible claim to be God!
Its been noted: Buddha never claimed to be God. Moses never claimed to
be Jehovah. Mohammed never claimed to be Allah. Yet Jesus Christ claimed
to be the true and living God. Buddha simply said, "I am a teacher in
search of the truth." Jesus said, "I am the Truth." Confucius said, "I never
claimed to be holy." Jesus said, "Who convicts me of sin?" Mohammed
said, "Unless God throws his cloak of mercy over me, I have no hope."
Jesus said, "Unless you believe in me, you will die in your sins." UNIQUE!
That stops us dead in our tracks. No one else credibly claimed, Your eternal
destiny rides on your relationship with me. But Jesus did. Jn 6:40: For this
is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in
him should have eternal life. Astounding. Caesar never said, Believe in me
to get eternal life. Confucius never said, Believe in me to get eternal life.
Plato never said, Believe in me to get eternal life. But Jesus did.
So how do you get a handle on one who stakes that claim on your eternal
destiny? Lots of ways. But lets look this morning at the primary identity He
assumed. Based on the OT, 1st century Jews expected a great Deliverer a
Messiah. Jesus claimed to be that person. For example, the Samaritan woman
Jesus met at Jacobs well in Jn 4 said, I know that Messiah is coming. In
Jn 4:26 Jesus answers, I who speak to you am he. So, who was Messiah?
The Hebrew word is Meshiach -- literally the Anointed One. Three offices in
the OT required that one be anointed. Prophets, priests and kings. Their
anointing represented the HSs blessing on them. Messiah combined all three
functions in one person thus THE Anointed One the Messiah the
Christ, (Greek word for Messiah). Jesus claimed that distinction. Early in His
ministry He read from the OT: The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because
HE has anointed me (Lu 4:18). That anointing occurred on the day of Jesus
baptism which initiated His ministry. Luke 3:21-22: 21 Now when all the
people were baptized, and when Jesus also had been baptized and was
praying, the heavens were opened, 22 and the Holy Spirit descended on him in
bodily form [His anointing], like a dove. Jesus was GODs Anointed One -Gods ultimate prophet, priest and king. The question is, Is He Your Messiah?

Christ is Gods Ultimate Prophet


What did prophets do? They spoke Gods Word to the people. Thus saith the
Lord was the staple of the OT prophet. We could never know a transcendent
God unless He chose to reveal Himself which he did thru words, spoken by
prophets. His words have life and power. Ten times in Gen 1 we find God
said as God spoke the universe into existence. He revealed Himself and
much about Himself through that Creation and through the spoken word.
But the ultimate Word of God was not a prophecy; it was a Person! Jn 1:1:
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was
God. Prior to this Gods revelation of Himself has been in words, it is now
through the Word! The last word in Gods revelation is a Person. Jesus is the
ultimate revelation of God. He is God in the flesh -- God with us! He is God
revealed in a way we can touch, feel, see and experience. God is not hidden;
God is not lost. True seekers need look to one place Jesus.
Heb 1:1: Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our
fathers by the prophets, 2 but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son,
whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the
world. 3 He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his
nature. Other prophets spoke for God; Jesus spoke as God. Other prophets
reflected Gods glory (Moses). Jesus was Gods glory. John 1:14: And the
Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as
of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. Dwelt literally
tabernacled. God met Israel at the tabernacle in the wilderness; now He meets
His people in Jesus Christ. John 1:18: No one has ever seen God; the only
God, who is at the Fathers side, he has made him known. The ultimate
prophetic function making God known. Anyone claiming to seek God but
rejecting Christ is a rebel. If we refuse Him, the blame is all on us.
As Gods prophet, Jesus is the ultimate revealer of truth. He told Pilate in Jn
19:37b: For this purpose I was born and for this purpose I have come into the
worldto bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to my
voice. No one will ever be able to stand before God and said, But truth is
relative. I had my truth; you had your truth. That will never play. Christ not
only spoke truth; He is truth. He is the truth. Jn 14:6, I am the way, and the
truth and the life; no one comes to the Father except through me. Jesus is
Gods final Word. Truth with a capital T. Extreme reality. Only way to God.
Larry King had the pastor of the largest church in America on his show one
night. When the pastor agreed you need Christ to go to heaven, King persisted,

What if youre Jewish or Muslim and you dont accept Christ at all?
Squirming, visibly uncomfortable, he replied, You know, I'm very careful
about saying who would and who would not go to heaven. I don't know."
King: "If you believe that you have to believe in Christ, they are wrong,
aren't they?" "Well, I don't know if I believe that they are wrong. I don't
know all about their religion, but I know that they love God. I don't know.
They seem so sincere. I don't know." Is that all it takes? Being sincere? Isnt
it possible to be sincerely wrong? Heres what Gods Truth says in Jn 17:3,
And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus
Christ whom you have sent. Listen heres reality. Reject Jesus and youve
rejected Gods Anointed and final revelation. You cant bypass Him.

Christ is Gods Ultimate Priest

This where the wonder and glory of Jesus really shine through. In this role, He
makes a substitutionary offering for sin and that offering is Himself. He is
simultaneously priest and offering! From the moment sin entered the world,
God began to teach that human offense against an infinite God could only be
remedied by a substitutionary sacrifice. Thus, He provided a substitute for the
fig leaves Adam and Eve created for themselves. He provided a substitute
when Abe was about to sacrifice his own son at Gods request. He provided a
substitute lamb for Israels firstborn to free them from captivity in Egypt. He
provided a substitute lamb for Israels sins when they could not keep His law.
But there is a problem with those substitutes. Heb 10:4: For it is impossible
for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins. None of those substitutes
could actually remove guilt. They were insufficient to erase sin. So why the
sacrifices? Because they provided forgiveness on credit! They were not the
payment, but they promised one day there would be payment. Your credit card
is not real money. But it promises that the real thing is coming, right? So the
lambs promised that the real thing was coming.
And after hundreds of years and millions of sacrifices, the Lamb arrived. John
the Baptist looked up one morning, saw the carpenter from Nazareth standing
nearby, pointed to Jesus and said, Behold the lamb of God who takes away
the sins of the world. Not the promise the reality! Heb 10: 11 And every
priest stands daily at his service, offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which
can never take away sins. 12 But when Christ had offered for all time a single
sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God. Gods ultimate priest
had paid the ultimate price to cover every sin of every believer not on

credit, but in reality. As Jesus died, the Father stamped Paid in Full over
that cross. Substitutionary atonement the only means of forgiveness.
In the 1970s there was a NY psychologist, Helen Schucman, an atheist. In her
best-selling, A Course in Miracles, she claimed Jesus appeared to her. He told
her, Do not make the pathetic error of clinging to the old rugged cross.
Your only calling here is to devote yourself with active willingness to the
denial of guilt in all its forms. The worlds solution. Deny guilt! But, it
doesnt work! Guilt will re-emerge every time like the potholes in CO roads!
The solution isnt deny it, but confess it to the lamb of God who takes away
the sin of the world. The beauty of Jesus priestly ministry is II Cor 5:21,
For He (the Father) made Him (Jesus) to be in for us that we might be made
the righteousness of God in Him. Wow! How does that happen? In Lu 24:47
Jesus specifically says He died and rose, 47 that repentance and forgiveness of
sins should be proclaimed. Not deny, repent! Listen if your septic tank
broke and you had sewage all over your yard what would you do deny, or
call for help? Well our lives are filled with the sewage of sin. Deny, or repent?
In an art museum in Munich hangs a painting by Rembrandt called Raising
the Cross. Christ is front and center, nailed to a cross being lifted into place by
Roman soldiers. But there is another man at the feet of Jesus, helping hoist the
cross. He wears a 17th century blue painters beret. Rembrandt has painted
himself into the picture -- acknowledging that he is a sinner and it is his sins
that have sent Christ to the cross. This beautifully depicts I Tim 2:5 For there
is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ
Jesus, 6 who gave himself as a ransom for all. But for Him to be my mediator,
I must paint myself into the picture as well by confessing my helplessness
and repenting my sin. Have you painted yourself in? Is He your mediator?

Christ is Gods Ultimate King

History isnt going nowhere. Its going somewhere. Because Jesus came. That
tiny baby will one day rule the world. People dont believe that, but they
will! Psa 2:1) Why do the nations rage and the peoples plot in vain? 2) The
kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against
the LORD and against his Anointed, saying, 3) Let us burst their bonds apart
and cast away their cords from us. God knows people mock and shake their
fist in His face because He doesnt comply with their self-centered desires. He
knows people think they can actively rebel or passively fob Him off like

yesterdays news. He knows that. So, 4) He who sits in the heavens laughs; the
Lord holds them in derision. . . . 6) As for me, I have set my King on Zion,
my holy hill. 7) I will tell of the decree: The LORD said to me, You are my
Son; today I have begotten you. 8) Ask of me, and I will make the nations your
heritage, and the ends of the earth your possession. Jesus is coming again as
King of kings. This is where history is going for Jesus and His followers.
But where is it going for you? If you want Him as your political king, He
must be king of your heart. The kingdom of God starts inside and works out.
Rom 10: 9 because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and
believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
Has the King arrived in your heart? Hes done everything possible to make it
happen. It is only for you to accept by faith what He has already done.
J. I. Packer says, The goal of the kingdom is the actual eliminating of all
active opposition to God's will, and all disharmony caused by sin, as well as
the salvation of God's people. Towards this goal, really, if not always in
appearance, all things move continually under Christ's dominion. As God's
Savior-King, Jesus has absolute control over all creatures, and an absolute
claim upon men. No man has a right NOT to be his disciple. No man has a
right not to be His disciple. Are you? His? Doesnt the beauty of His Person
and Work draw you to be His follower?
Conc Who is Jesus? He is Gods Anointed, His ultimate prophet, priest and
king. After today, youll never be able to say, I didnt know. But, its not
enough to know; its not even enough to believe the facts. The question is, is
He your Prophet, Priest and King? Is Gods Messiah your Messiah? Is He?
Salvation is for those whove taken their hands off the wheel of life and turned
it all over to Him.
Napoleon said this near the end of his life: Alexander, Caesar,
Charlemagne, and myself founded empires; but on what foundation did we
rest the creatures of our genius? Upon force. But Jesus Christ founded an
empire upon love; and at this hour, millions of persons would die for Him.
[thats commitment]. I die before my time, and my body will be given back to
the earth to become food for the worms. Such is the fate of . . . the great
Napoleon. What an abyss between my deep misery and the eternal kingdom
of Christ, which is proclaimed, loved, adored and is still existing over the
whole earth. We all worship something this morning. Will your something
last eternally? Jesus will. Why not commit to Him? Lets pray.