The great figures of human history are fascinating topics to study. Their lives, their ideas, their contributions to humanity are inspiring. Jesus of Nazareth stands without equal in this group. Billions of people have found hope and life and meaning in their relationship with Him. In this brief study we will begin to examine what the Bible says about who Jesus is.
Jesus' time in human history
Western culture marks the years as B.C., "Before Christ," and A.D., for the Latin phrase "Anno Domini," which means "Year of the Lord." Jesus lived roughly 500 years after Buddha, 50 years after the death of Julius Caesar and 600 years before Muhammad.
- Read about Jesus' birth in Matthew 1:18-25.
- Who is Jesus' mother?
- What is strange about this birth?
- What is Joseph's role?
- Now read Luke 1:26-37.
- It speaks of the conception of Jesus in His mother's womb.
- Again, who is Jesus' mother?
- Who is Jesus' "Father?"
- Verse 35 is key. What will Jesus be called?
- In some literature Jesus is described as though He were an alien from outer space. He's almost unreal. Look up the following verses and identify the human activity or characteristic seen in Jesus.
- Luke 2:7
- Luke 2:40
- Matthew 4:2
- John 11:35
- John 19:28
- Mark 4:38
- Matthew 27:50
- The point that these verses make is that Jesus is truly what?
- Yet, the mystery of Jesus is a deep one. Read again Luke 1:35. Who is Jesus?
- Read Luke 2:1-14. Who do the angels say has been born? (v. 10-11)
- Read again Matthew 1:18-25. One of the many titles given Jesus is “Immanuel.” According to verse 23, what does this word mean?
- Do you see Jesus as "with you?" Why or why not?
- Read the following verses. Identify the action of Jesus that shows He was more than human.
- Matthew 4:23-25
- Matthew 8:1-4
- Matthew 9:18-33
- Matthew 14:22-33
- Mark 4:35-41
- John 2:1-12
- John 11:38-44
- The point of these verses is that Jesus truly is whom?
- What do you think is the most important message from the Bible about Jesus?
Questions for thought/discussion:
- What are your criteria for someone to be considered your hero?
- How did you develop your present concept of Jesus?
- When you discuss spiritual topics with your friends, does the image of Jesus that you just read from the Bible come up very often? If so, how? If not, why not?
Suggested further activity:
- There is a video called “Jesus of Nazareth.” Check it out or purchase it from a local video store or Christian book store and watch it.
- For further reading, read pages 115-124 of Luther’s Small Catechism with Explanation from Concordia Publishing House, St. Louis, Mo.