No greater question is put to man in his short life than the question, “Who is Jesus?”
Born into a financially strapped family of the reduced royal stock (Isa. 10:33-11:1), raised in a despised town of prophetic insignificance (John 7:52), uneducated (John 7:15), unattractive (Isa. 53:2), unbelieved (John 7:5). Without office, without dignity, without party affiliation. Not with the Sadducees, the Zealots, the Essenes, or the Pharisees. Not a religious hierarch, political revolutionary, monastic emigrant, or pious legalistic moralist (following Hans Küng’s analysis). Betrayed by a close friend (Psa. 41:9), forsaken by God (Mark 15:34), and subjected to a cruel death at the prime of His life after a short ministry of only three years. Then after such a seemingly disastrous end, a glorious beginning. Good news.
Who is Jesus? What did He want? How has this Nazarene captured, for so long, the attention of both fishers (Peter) and philosophers (even Nietzsche)? How did this Jesus garner the longest biography in the Encyclopaedia Britannica (21,000 words) and in Time Magazine win the accolade of most influential man ever?
It would require much exotic calculation, however, to deny that the single most powerful figure–not merely in these two millenniums but in all human history–has been Jesus of Nazareth… a serious argument can be made that no one else’s life has proved remotely as powerful and enduring as that of Jesus.
-Reynolds Price, Time Magazine
Who exactly Jesus is, is the preeminent, perennial, and most personal inquiry that is thrust upon us.
Long before the great christological debates of the fifth century, Jesus Himself preemptively broached the subject in the Gospel of Matthew when He asked Peter,
Who do you say that I am? –Matt. 16:15
Again, days before His death, Jesus asked the Pharisees this question of questions,
What do you think concerning the Christ? –Matt. 22:42
8 “I am” Statements of Jesus
In the Gospel of John, Jesus makes eight profound self-disclosures. They not only get to the heart of Jesus’ identity, but they reveal the benefits and blessings of coming to know and experience Him. They are known as the “I am” statements:
- I am the bread of life (John 6:35, 51)
- I am the light of the world (John 8:12)
- I am the door of the sheep (John 10:9)
- I am the good shepherd (John 10:11)
- I am the resurrection and the life (John 11:25)
- I am the way, the truth, and the life (John 14:6)
- I am the true vine (John 15:1)
- I AM (John 8:58)
Bibles for America Video
Bibles for America is a nonprofit organization that is devoted to helping people know Jesus through His Word. They have distributed over 1 million FREE Bibles in over 10,000 cities since the year 2000. They recently put out this short video answering the question, “Who is Jesus?” If you enjoy it, please share it. It only takes a few seconds to share and it may just help someone discover who Jesus is and why He is so incredible.
- TIME Magazine: Most Powerful Figure in Human History (andreasnest.com)
- The History of the Liar, Lunatic, Lord Trilemma (lifeandbuilding.com)
- What People are Really Thinking when they Invite you to Church (huffingtonpost.com)