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Being a Jesus focused Christian

This week we are going to continue on with our Kingdom Focused series. So far, we have done an introduction and the first message on Being a Bible focused Christian. We saw four things…

  1. What the Bible says about itself – inspired by God, it cuts to the heart of things, and it is eternal.
  2. The blessings that come from reading the Bible – we will prosper and succeed in all we do if we meditate on and obey the Word.
  3. We can trust the Bible because – the prophecies fulfilled, the archaeological discoveries, the unity of theme, the original transcripts and it claims to be the Word of God.
  4. We looked at some practical hints to help us engage – come to church, do a daily devotional, find a reading plan, get an app for your phone/iPad, subscribe via email.

The title of this message is “Being a Christ Focused Christian”. Today I want to focus completely on Jesus Christ. I want to look at three key passages that let us know who Christ is, what He has done for us, and what He is currently doing for us.

Passage 1 – John 1:1-14

1 In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God.

2 He existed in the beginning with God.

3 God created everything through Him, and nothing was created except through Him.

4 The Word gave life to everything that was created, and His life brought light to everyone.

5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it.

6 God sent a man, John the Baptist,

7 to tell about the light so that everyone might believe because of his testimony.

8 John himself was not the light; he was simply a witness to tell about the light.

9 The One who is the true light, who gives light to everyone, was coming into the world.

10 He came into the very world He created, but the world didn’t recognize Him.

11 He came to His own people, and even they rejected Him.

12 But to all who believed Him and accepted Him, He gave the right to become children of God.

13 They are reborn–not with a physical birth resulting from human passion or plan, but a birth that comes from God.

14 So the Word became human and made His home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. And we have seen His glory, the glory of the Father’s one and only Son.

 a. Jesus is eternal – v1-2

John 1:1-2 – 1 In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He existed in the beginning with God.

This is John describing Jesus as the eternal Word. John knew Jesus better than anyone else. Describing Jesus as the Word can be confusing. But the Greek Word here is logos which can mean the Bible or the revealed Word of God. It can also mean the Divine expression of God. So, John is saying that Jesus is both eternal and the Divine expression of God.

To put John 1:1-2 another way you could say. Jesus was there at the beginning. He already existed as a part of the Godhead. And He is the Divine expression of God.

b. Jesus is the creator – v3-4

John 1:3-4 – God created everything through Him, and nothing was created except through Him.  4 The Word gave life to everything that was created, and His life brought light to everyone.

Not only is Jesus the eternal Divine expression of God, He is the creator. Genesis 1:1 says, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth”. Jesus was front and centre in this process. Everything was created through him. Not just some things – everything.

We will look a this more later when we look at the Colossians passage.

c. Jesus is the light that came into the world to save us – v5-14

John 1: 5 – The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it.

John 1:9 – The One who is the true light, who gives light to everyone, was coming into the world.

In the Bible light is used many times to describe the good things of God. In the beginning God said, “Let there be light” and there was light in Genesis 1:3. Psalm 18:28 tells us “You light a lamp for me. The LORD, my God, lights up my darkness.” And in Psalm 119:105 it says, “Your word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path”.

One key verse for me is John 8:12. In this verse Jesus described Himself in this way, “I am the light of the world. If you follow Me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.”

Jesus is the light of the world. He lights our way and He fills our life with His light. He said His light leads to life.

John 1:12-13 – But to all who believed Him and accepted Him, He gave the right to become children of God.  13 They are reborn–not with a physical birth resulting from human passion or plan, but a birth that comes from God.

In these two verses John talks about how we are saved. We are saved by our faith and acceptance of Christ. We are born again and born into God’s eternal family. Jesus is the light that came into the world to save us.

Jesus is the eternal creator who came into this world to save us, we need to be Christ centered.

Passage 2 – Colossians 1:15-18

15 Christ is the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation,

16 for through Him God created everything in the heavenly realms and on earth. He made the things we can see and the things we can’t see–such as thrones, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities in the unseen world. Everything was created through Him and for Him.

17 He existed before anything else, and He holds all creation together.

18 Christ is also the head of the church, which is His body. He is the beginning, supreme over all who rise from the dead. So, He is first in everything.

a. Jesus is the visible image of the invisible God – v15, 19

Colossians 1:15, 19 – 15 Christ is the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation…

19 For God in all His fullness was pleased to live in Christ,

Jesus is the visible image of the invisible God. If you are wondering what God is like today, then look at the life of Jesus Christ in the Bible. Take a note of His teachings, take note of His compassion, take note of His love and take note of His commitment to you and me. When you study who the Bible says Jesus is and what He has done, you will see what God is like. Jesus is God with skin. As the Christmas carol says, “Emmanuel – God with us”.

b. Jesus is the creator of all things seen and unseen – v16

Colossians 1:16 – For through Him God created everything in the heavenly realms and on earth. He made the things we can see and the things we can’t see—such as thrones, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities in the unseen world. Everything was created through Him and for Him.

In John 1 we saw that Jesus is the eternal creator and sustainer. It said He created all things. This verse explains it a bit deeper. It says He created everything in the heavenly realms and on the earth. Everything we see and everything we know is there, but also the things we can’t see. He includes things like the heavenly rulers and authorities of the unseen world. This expands out what Jesus has done. It really is everything! He is the creator of ALL things!

c. Jesus is the head of the church – v 18

Colossians 1:18 – Christ is also the head of the church, which is His body. He is the beginning, supreme over all who rise from the dead. So, He is first in everything.

Paul’s says Jesus is the head of the church when he says, “And he is the head of the body, the church”. To be the “head” (GK G3051) of the church is to be its sovereign ruler.  Ephesians 1:22-23 says, “God has put all things under the authority of Christ and has made Him head over all things for the benefit of the church.  23 And the church is His body; it is made full and complete by Christ, who fills all things everywhere with Himself”.

Christ, and no other person, is the chief and leader of the church. It is he who guides and governs it. Christ’s church is His body. We are His hands, His feet, His heart, His mouthpiece. He is our ruler and we are His servants. He has done everything for the church’s benefit and the church is made complete by Him.

Jesus is the visible image of God, the creator of all things and the head of the church. We need to be Christ centered.

Passage 3 – Hebrews 7:23-28

23 There were many priests under the old system, for death prevented them from remaining in office.

24 But because Jesus lives forever, His priesthood lasts forever.

25 Therefore He is able, once and forever, to save those who come to God through Him. He lives forever to intercede with God on their behalf.

26 He is the kind of high priest we need because He is holy and blameless, unstained by sin. He has been set apart from sinners and has been given the highest place of honour in heaven.

27 Unlike those other high priests, He does not need to offer sacrifices every day. They did this for their own sins first and then for the sins of the people. But Jesus did this once for all when He offered Himself as the sacrifice for the people’s sins.

28 The law appointed high priests who were limited by human weakness. But after the law was given, God appointed His Son with an oath, and His Son has been made the perfect High Priest forever.

a. Jesus is our eternal High Priest – v23-24, 28

Hebrews 7:23-24, 28 –  There were many priests under the old system, for death prevented them from remaining in office.  24 But because Jesus lives forever, His priesthood lasts forever…

28 The law appointed high priests who were limited by human weakness. But after the law was given, God appointed His Son with an oath, and His Son has been made the perfect High Priest forever.

In Old Testament times the Priests were the ones who made sacrifices on behalf of the people. On the Day of Atonement, the High Priest went beyond the veil to sacrifice on behalf of the people’ sins. The Day of Atonement (Leviticus 23:27-28), also known as Yom Kippur, was the most solemn holy day of all the Israelite feasts and festivals, occurring once a year on the tenth day of the seventh month of the Hebrew calendar. On that day, the high priest was to perform elaborate rituals of washing, dressing and sacrificing bulls and goats to atone for the sins of the people. This is described in Leviticus 16:1-34, the atonement ritual began with Aaron, or subsequent high priests of Israel, coming into the holy of holies.

The problem with this system is that Priests were human and died. Not one of them could be the perfect eternal sacrifice. This is where Jesus stepped in. Jesus is our eternal high priest who sacrificed Himself for our sins.

Hebrews 7:26 says, “He is the kind of high priest we need because He is holy and blameless, unstained by sin. He has been set apart from sinners and has been given the highest place of honour in heaven”.

Jesus is the once and for time sacrifice for sin. No more bulls, no more goats, no more doves need to be sacrificed. As Jesus said on the cross before He died, “It is finished”. The price has been paid. The victory over sin and death has been won. It is ours in Christ.

As verse 28 of our text says, “His Son has been made the perfect High Priest forever.”

b. Jesus saved us and intercedes for us – v25

Hebrews 7:25 – Therefore He is able, once and forever, to save those who come to God through Him. He lives forever to intercede with God on their behalf.

My last quick point before I finish today is Jesus saved us and He lives to intercede for us. If you have ever wondered if God is on your side. Remember that Jesus ever lives to intercede for you. To intercede means to pray on behalf of another. Just like we pray and intercedes before the Father for our family, friends and church family, Jesus is praying for you. Whatever you are going through now. Whatever you are going to go through in the future, you don’t go through it without Jesus’ prayers. You are never alone. And Jesus is always praying for you. This gives me great courage and great strength to know.

Jesus is our eternal great high priest who ever lives to intercede for us. We need to be Christ centred.

Closing summary

Today we looked at being Christ focused Christians. We saw many truths about Christ – who He is and what He has done.

From John 1 we saw…

  • Jesus is the eternal expression of God
  • Jesus is the creator and sustainer of the world
  • Jesus is the light who came into the world to save us

From Colossians 1 we saw…

  • Jesus is the visible image of the invisible God
  • Jesus is the creator of all things seen and unseen
  • Jesus is the head of the church

From Hebrews 7 we saw…

  • Jesus is our great eternal high priest
  • Jesus saved us and ever lives to intercede for us

So, let us be Christ focused Christians. Let us be a Christ focused church.

Amen


By Dave Quinn
Founder of PASSIONAustralia.org

 

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