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Who is Jesus?

Isaiah 49:1-7:

“And now the Lord says, he who formed me from the womb to be his servant, to bring Jacob back to him; and that Israel might be gathered to him — for I am honored in the eyes of the Lord, and my God has become my strength — he says: ‘It is too light a thing that you should be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob and to bring back the preserved of Israel; I will make you as a light for the nations, that my salvation may reach to the end of the earth.’ Thus says the Lord, the Redeemer of Israel and his Holy One, to one deeply despised, abhorred by the nation, the servant of rulers: ‘Kings shall see and arise; princes, and they shall prostrate themselves; because of the Lord, who is faithful, the Holy One of Israel, who has chosen you.'” (English Standard Version, 2001, by Crossway)

Isaiah was God’s prophet to Judah for over 50 years, and lived more than 700 years before Jesus would appear on this Earth. In the portion cited above, Isaiah gives us an insight about who God’s Holy One (Jesus) will be, and, for us, who Jesus is right now.

Jesus was, and is, and shall always be a Servant King. Or, as Harry Wendt, the author of the Crossways Bible study series, has termed him, “…the King who does feet.”

A humble, yet supremely powerful Servant of God who is King over everything!

Isaiah differs from Jeremiah and Ezekiel in that the character of his prophetic ministry blends foretelling (the prophet seeing far into the future) along with a greater measure with forthtelling (preaching the truth to a sinful people). That tells us a lot about Isaiah the prophet and his work towards describing what the Messiah (Christ) would be like for those who are believers in God’s redemption.

His prophesies would have relevance from then until now, for those who seek to be saved into eternity. All of the scriptures we have read during Advent and up to Christmas Day have many excerpts from Isaiah’s long-ago prophesies. His accuracy and urgent cry to us who labor under the “human condition” are so important because we need to know and understand who Jesus is and will eternally be.

Jesus sets the example and then takes that example into our everyday reality.

The reality of Jesus as a person and his identity is like a “fire escape” in the “burning building” that is our sinful world. Our human condition is that we have a sin problem with which God has dealt. The Heavenly Father has given us a solution to our sin nature, which is our current human condition.

In the person and personality of Jesus, we have found a solution to this condition.

We are the “New Israel” in that we have been grafted onto the ever-growing vine of God’s people that dates back to Abraham.

The center of God’s dealings with his people has been centered in Jerusalem for several millennia. We are called to live in a “New Jerusalem” which shall come down to believers out of heaven from God when the Day of Resurrection shall begin.

Jesus is the go-between who enables us to live in a new heaven and a new Earth, which shall be our new reality of living with God forever.

That Servant King is who Jesus claims to be for us. He is the one who lived in the human condition without sin and became the perfect sacrificial lamb to atone for all sin, for all sinners, for all time!

That is the essence of who Jesus is and that information gives us an insight into His personality which is to eternally reach out to save us as a servant of the Father.

But, at the same time, the Father has given all things into His possession, making him King of the universe. What better real Person is there in all that exists to whom we can cling for our salvation?

Where does that leave us, then, in our investigation into the identity of Jesus of Nazareth, the Holy One of God?

With the knowledge that this faith has lasted and been practiced by so many believers until this very day speaks to the truth that it surely holds. The truth is that Jesus is who He has said He is and will always be. He is the Lord over all creation and we who will listen to his call to repentance and new life have a treasure more sure than anything on earth.

Who, then, is Jesus?

He is the Truth of what life is meant to be and has lived in bodily form as our best example.

He is a person who wants to have a personal and intimate relationship with you.

Jesus was and is and will always be the King of kings and the Lord of lords.

And, even if I’m wrong about all of the assertions I have made in this article, I would rather believe in Jesus as my Lord and Savior than to not believe and remain trapped in the human condition of hopelessness and doubt.

What about you?

If I’m right, then you have a hope. If I’m wrong, then you and I are no worse off than before.

Faith in Him is given freely by God.

Accept His invitation to know who Jesus is and then He will help you understand who you really are meant to be!

The Rev. Randall (Randy) Conley is the pastor of Hope Lutheran Church in Hubbard Lake. He is married to his wife of 21 years, Robbie. He has written articles on faith and theology for several publications in his denomination. He enjoys preaching, teaching and gardening at home.