The Life of Christ
New Testament Miracles
The Life of Christ the name Jesus Christ has altered the landscape of the West and the world. Born in Israel some 2,000 years ago, with the name Christactually meaning ‘messiah’ or ‘anointed one,’ many would argue this name stands out from any other name in history.
Instructor: Jessica Whittemore
Today’s lesson will be a brief exploration of this name and the man who held it. It will be a summary of the beliefs found in the Christian Bible’s New Testament, the main source for the life and teachings of Jesus Christ.
According to the first four books of the New Testament, known collectively as The Gospels, Jesus Christ was born in Bethlehem some 2,000 years ago. As the New Testament recounts, this was no ordinary birth, as the Bible tells us Jesus was born to a young, Jewish virgin named Mary. This birth was God miraculously bringing His son to the earth.
Son of God & Miracles
Living a normal Jewish life with His mother Mary and her husband Joseph, Jesus spent the majority of His young life in Nazareth of Israel. History has given Him the name Jesus of Nazareth.
As a young man, Jesus studied the trade of carpentry. However, sometime in His 30s, Jesus began to proclaim His celestial heritage, asserting that He was the Son of God who came to redeem the world from sin and death.
Making Him stand out even more, He also claimed equality with God. To support this claim, Jesus began traveling throughout Galilee, a region of Israel, performing many, many miracles. His first recorded miracle was one in which He actually turned water into wine. Not stopping there, He performed many others, including healing the sick, casting out demons and even raising a man named Lazarus from the dead!
During His travels, Jesus gathered Twelve Disciples, or followers. Some of the most famous of these original twelve were Peter, James, Matthew and John.
Plot Against Jesus
However, while Jesus gained many followers, many others wanted Him out of the picture, specifically Jewish leaders who absolutely despised the idea that anyone would claim to be equal to their holy God. They also weren’t too thrilled with the idea that Jesus claimed He had come to the world to love and save everyone, not just those of Jewish heritage. Adding to this, Jesus gained the disfavor of the Roman officials who ruled over the Israel of His day. To them, He was seen as a potential danger, one who just might incite the people of Israel to rebel.
Despite the fact that Jesus never led an army or called for rebellion, the leading Jews of the day and the Roman officials conspired to bring about His death. One evening, while Jesus and His followers were praying in the Garden of Gethsemane, one of His disciples, Judas Iscariot, made a deal with the Jewish officials and betrayed Jesus. That very night, a group of Roman soldiers came and arrested Jesus. In fear, His disciples fled.
Crucifixion & Resurrection
After several trials, Jesus Christ was condemned to crucifixion, or death on the cross. As His punishment was handed down, Jesus replied, ‘Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up’ (John 2:19).
Sadly for His accusers, they thought He was speaking of the actual temple building in Jerusalem. They had no clue He was actually speaking of His body and that all along His plan had been to die as a sacrifice for all men’s sins, then to rise again. As the Bible states in the book of Romans,
‘For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard. Yet God, with undeserved kindness, declares that we are righteous. He did this through Christ Jesus when He freed us from the penalty for our sins’ (Romans 3:23-24).
True to their word, the Roman and Jewish officials saw Jesus hung on a cross on a hill outside of Jerusalem, known to history as Calvary. Also, true to His word, the New Testament story recounts that on the third day after His death Jesus Christ’s tomb was found empty, with an angel proclaiming, ‘He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead, just as He said would happen’ (Matthew 28:16). Thus, the story of Easter!
The New Testament goes on to share that the miracles of Jesus didn’t end there. After His resurrection from the dead, the Gospels assert that Jesus spent 40 days on Earth, continuing to preach the love of God and salvation. After these 40 days, Jesus was taken up to heaven in a cloud in an act that has come to be known as the Ascension of Christ.
Within a very short time of this ascension, the remaining disciples of Jesus were no longer hiding. Instead, they were sharing the simple New Testament message that ‘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’ (Romans 10:9).
Known to history as Jesus of Nazareth or Jesus of Galilee, the story of Jesus Christ has altered history. With the name Christ meaning the ‘Messiah’ or ‘the anointed one,’ His followers believe He was sent to Earth to offer salvation for all.
As the New Testament of the Christian Bible recounts, it is believed that Jesus was born to a virgin in the town of Bethlehem. As the Gospels share, He was raised as a Jewish carpenter. However, when He began asserting that he was the Son of God, equal to God, He gained the disfavor of both Jewish and Roman officials.
After performing many miracles, like turning water into wine, and after gaining many disciples, Jesus Christ was betrayed by Judas Iscariot and crucified at Calvary. However, after three days in the grave, He was resurrected from the dead, appearing to many before eventually ascending into heaven.
Seeing His many miracles, and believing him to be the Son of God – equal to God the father in every way – His disciples began spreading the New Testament message that any who believe that Jesus is Lord and that He was raised from the dead will be saved.
Resource: The Gospels: The Life of Christ – Video & Lesson Transcript | Study.com
Whittemore, J. (2019). The Gospels: The Life of Christ – Video & Lesson Transcript | Study.com. Retrieved from https://study.com/academy/lesson/the-gospels-the-life-of-christ.html