Tag Archive: Jesus


Found Wanting


Those of you you who have been following my blogs will know that on Mondays I blog about the books that I am currently writing, the first of which, is called “Found Wanting”, and on Wednesdays I blog about my life, current events, things I enjoy, or new news on my life coaching business etc, anything that gives the reader a little info about who I am and what I’m about, or current events in my life, and Fridays I blog about life coaching/personal development/relationship and psychology related topics, offering free tips and tools to overcome varying circumstances in life. I am about to start a stress management series this Friday. For those of you who are new to my blog, this will give you an idea of which blogs you prefer most to tune into. I am nearing the end of giving excerpts on this book called ‘Found Wanting’ without giving away the entire book! Lol! I will have 2-3 more excerpts on this book, before I move into blogging about another book I am currently working on!

But for today, let me re-cap what the book Found Wanting is about. The title itself is meant to be a play on words, with two separate meanings. The first half of the book is geared to understanding from a christian perspective, what the ‘fall of man’ was about. How independence and mistrust in the heart of God for us led us into a place of isolation and far from the dependency and trust in His good heart toward us and his character wanting nothing more than to lavish goodness and blessing upon us as children dearly loved by a father God figure. As in earlier blogs I mentioned the community of one-ness between the triune God, Father, son, and Holy spirit, who were involved in a community of one-ness and completeness, and full of love. God IS love. It was within the heart of God to extend that invitation for fellowship and relationship to humankind who he created with this purpose and intent in mind: To love us and allow us to experience the love within the community of the Godhead. It was his desire that we reciprocate this love as well. To receive it, to love God and to love others, created in the image of God that all may know this wonderful love of God. But part of love involved the freedom of choice -free will as we call it, to NOT love. If we are not given the choice to NOT love, or NOT receive love, any relationship is reduced to a servitude or control by force which removes the ability to love freely. The only way love can truly exist is with the freedom to not, so that loving becomes a choice and not merely a dictatorship. But because God had an enemy, an angel of God who fell I his vanity and pride, seeking to be greater than God, but lost the battle and was unable to achieve the greatness he sought after, he forever became intent in hurting the heart of God by attacking those God created in his image (us, humanity) and trying to convince us that God’s character and heart for us was not good. The sad reality is, we bought the lie. We’ve been living with that lie at the core of our being, questioning the goodness of God, looking for answer’s on our own and trusting our own ability and strength, rather than trusting him. We became convinced we must look out for ourselves because who else would? We were introduced to the harsh realities of life, and our experience taught us that what God said was a lie. Where was this goodness he spoke of? If God is a good God, why does he allow evil to triumph and pain to exist? On and on the questions go. And the belief system is rooted ever deeper in our hearts that God must not be good, which develops our alternate belief system: I must look after myself. I must protect myself. I must be in control, the very nature of the enemy of God who sought to be greater than God. Arrogance, pride, independence. I will not discuss these questions all over again, as I have discussed them in previous blogs (on Monday’s), but may open a discussion on some of those questions in July when I am finished giving an overview on this book, prior to getting into my next book I am working on.

My intent for today is to evaluate the second interpretation of the title ‘Found Wanting’, which rather than the first definition to be ‘found wanting’ or ‘lacking’ or deficient’ due to sin, rebellion and independence against the God who both created, loves and pursues us, the second interpretation is meant to explore what happens when we come back to that place of believing, and recognizing that God does, indeed have a good heart for us! When we experience that ‘aha’ moment of revelation, that ‘God moment’ as it were, where he arrests our attention, when he stops us dead in our tracks, when the unseen reality of what is unseen invades the natural and we ‘know’ to the very core of our being that we have just ‘met God.’ There are so many ways in which it happens, it can be simple and tender, it can be a vision that brings the awareness of the divine to life for you, it can be a download of so much information, wisdom and knowledge in an instant where you feel your mind has been expanded and enlightened to receive far more information than you know you could possibly take in in that instant without the divine being responsible for it. It could be your whole life flashing before you in an instant, whilst feeling the presence of angels surrounding you wanting to comfort and minister to you while God himself reveals the pain, the hurt, the wounds, the limiting beliefs you have held onto, while his peace and his presence met over you as he begins a work of healing and restoration to your soul. It is that moment when he shows you where he was when that traumatic experience took place and he reassures you of his unconditional love for you, when he reminds you that no matter what you have done or where you have been, he is with you, and he has always loved you, and reminds you that you were created for a purpose, that your life is not merely an accident, but divinely woven together by god, of immeasurable worth, not worth that is conditional in what you do or don’t, but simply because God loves you and gave you worth no matter what. It is innate, God given, because of his passionate heart for you to love and pursue you with the longing of reciprocal love for Him.

So being ‘found wanting’ in the second definition involves remembering that God loves us, and because he first loved us and we get that taste of this love, we suddenly are beside ourselves, found wanting, as in desiring God in return. Why does this happen? Because of the very nature of love. Love is generous and ever expanding, especially the love that God has for us, the unconditional kind that never changes, never ends, is kind and merciful and gracious, and as a result of believing that Jesus took all of our sin upon himself in our place, knowing that there is therefore no more punishment or consequence for sin, because the son of God, part of the triune God, became flesh, became a man, lived a sinless life, died on a cruel cross taking all the sin of the world with him upon the cross so that we might believe in him. That our doubt of God’s goodness might be replaced with the realization of his love, drawing our hearts back to a desire to love God as he has loved us. But belief is the cure for our unbelief. And believing can be hard, especially when the response is so simple:

“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, for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. For whoever believes in him shall not be disappointed.” Romans 10:9-11

That’s it? That’s all I have to do? And yet, why is it so hard?

“There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending his own son in the likeness of sinful flesh, so that the requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the spirit. For those who are according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who are of the spirit, the things of the spirit. For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the spirit is life and peace, because the mind set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so… However, you are not in the flesh but in the spirit, if indeed the spirit of God dwells in you… So then, we are under obligation, not to the flesh, to live according to it…but if by the spirit you are putting to death the deeds of the body (sin), you will live. For all who are being led by the spirit of Gid, these are sons if Hod. For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons!” Romans 8:1-15

In the middle of that last passage the clue to why it is so hard to believe is there in the text. “the mind set in the flesh is HOSTILE to god, it DOES NOT SUBJECT (or submit) to God FOR IT IS NOT EVEN ABLE TO. This is the crux of sin nature: hostility towards God, hardness of heart, unbelief, independence from God. It’s root? Believing a lie that the heart of God is not good for us, Believing that God is not real, or believing he doesn’t care, whatever variation of the lie that you have believed… And what happens over time is a hardening of our hearts. At first or may be felt as a tender moment of “where was God when…” fill in the blanks, perhaps tears where shed… You felt alone, abandoned. You questioned his heart, his goodness… And over time, it became a hardened belief system embedded in your deep inner heart that God doesn’t care. The purpose of God sending his son was to show us in a radical way how much he loves us. Who hasn’t heard of the concept of laying your life down for someone you love? In combat, it is done all the time, one man takes a bullet for his buddy, sparing his friend’s life. In just such a manner, this is what God did…Jesus, referred to as God’s son, fully God, fully perfect, became a man and lived a perfect sinless life, and then took the bullet for us so to speak. All that rebellion against God, all our moves away from his love, Jesus took all of our sin and wrongdoing, our pain, our unbelief and gave us a visual of real love: “Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.” This is exactly what Jesus did to say “I love you. My heart for you has always been good. Return to ,e that I may show you my love, that you may receive my love.”

The response to being really loved… Is to love in return. This is God’s desire. That we may know his love, receive it, love him and pass it on to others that they too may know this great unfailing live of God!

This is what it means to be ‘found wanting’ as in desiring God. If you have ever been in love and ache while apart from the one you love, and long to be in their presence as soon as you possibly can, and take in, saturate, breathe in the pleasurable feeling of being loved, you can relate. This experience is possible with God… To be found desiring the nest moment where you get to enjoy the intoxicating presence of love -perfect love from God, the only kind of love that can bind up all your wounds and bring wholeness to your brokenness, comfort to your mourning, completion to your lack of direction, community to your isolation, and much much more! I want to be found wanting and desiring God forever.

Advertisements

Unconditional Love


 

 

I mentioned on Monday that I would talk a little more today about unconditional love today.

Since I am going to unpack what God’s love for us looks like on Monday, excerpts out of my book ‘Found Wanting’, I thought today, I might just pass on some good stuff I’ve read from Joyce Meyer on the subject of unselfish, or unconditional love. Some quotes I have read from her book ‘The Love Revolution’ that have really inspired me over the past couple of years.

Helpful tips from Joyce Meyer on learning what unselfish love is, and how to apply it:

 

“One way to love others is to help them not feel worse about the things they already feel bad about.”

I admit, I often find this challenging especially when I have been seriously offended! I am still working on exhibiting more grace toward others, and am personally working on empathizing with where they are coming from so that I can become better at this kind of grace filled compassionate love.

I read this from the book ‘Caring Enough To Confront’ by David Ausberger about caring and confronting which I am working on utilizing in my own life:

Caring

I care about you and about our relationship

I want to hear your view

I want to fully respect your insights

I trust you to be able to handle my honest feelings

I promise to stay with the discussion until we’ve reached an understanding

I will not pressure, manipulate, or distort the differences

I give you my loving, honest respect.

Confronting

I feel deeply about the issues and interests at stake

I want to clearly express my view

I want authentic respect for my insights

I want you to trust me with your honest feelings, knowing that i can handle them fairly

I want you to keep working with me until we’ve reached a new understanding

I want your unpressured, clear, undistorted view of our differences

I want your caring-confronting response.

I am finding these tools as well as others beneficial personally to empathize when someone has wronged me, and I need to remind myself of Joyce Meyer’s advice to not make the person feel worse than they already do! Sometimes… Keeping your mouth shut is the only option if you are not yet able to find the grace to empathize and try to see things from the other person’s perspective, until your own emotions cool!

More tips on unconditional love from Joyce Meyer:

“humility serves and always does what lifts others up.”

“Jesus never made people feel badly because they were not on his level, but instead he stooped to their level.”

“Man’s love fails, but God’s does not. Man’s love comes to an end but God’s love does not. Sometimes I find that although I cannot love a person in my own human strength, I am able to love them with God’s love.”

“Human love depends on feelings. We love people because they have been good to us, or they loved us first. They make us feel good about ourselves, or make life easier, so we say we love them. Or we love them because we want them to love us. But that type of love is based on what they are doing, and if they stop doing it, we will probably stop loving them. God’s love is totally different. When human love ends, God’s love is still available to finish what needs to be done.”

“The true love of God doesn’t depend on feelings it is based on decision. Help anyone who needs help, unless helping them would ultimately hurt them. They don’t have to deserve it. As a matter of fact, sometimes I think the less they deserve it, the more impacting it is.”

“Mercy helps those who don’t deserve help, but unconditional love is not intended to allow people to be irresponsible while we pay the bill. Mercy gives many opportunities, and unconditional love never gives up. It… moves out of the shadows and helps when doing so will really make a difference.”

Perhaps my favorite definition of unconditional love is this:

Agape, from the Greek, translated as unconditional love, or benevolent love, refers to charity. It’s benevolence however, is not shown by doing necessarily what the person loved desires, but what the one who loves deems as necessary or needed by the one being loved.

For example, God gave us not what we wanted, as perceived by God (the one loving), but rather God’s love for man is based on God doing what he knows is best for man and not what man desires. It is God’s willful direction toward mankind. For us to love God, we must first appropriate God’s ‘agape’ love, for only God has such an unselfish love.

I will divulge more into this unconditional love and how it pertains to us on Monday next week! Stay tuned!

Unconditional love has been the single greatest feat for me to accomplish! I long to love this way to the best of my human ability! I am continually humbled by my circumstances when I realize how far I yet have to go to love more and more like God loves! I know I will never be perfect at it, but I greatly admire this kind of love and desire to emulate it to the best of my ability. I am grateful both for my successes and failures in this task, as I learn from each experience how to greater facilitate the ability to love in this way. Sigh. A long ways to go I’m sure. I am thankful for the grace God shows me, as I grapple with learning to extend this same grace to other’s as I try to model my life after the life of Christ. I am a work in progress!


Part 2

“To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything and your heart will be crrtainly wrung and possibly
broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal. Wrap it careful with hobbies and little luxuries, avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket – safe, dark, motionless, airless- it will change. It will not be broken, it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable… The only place outside Heaven where you can be perfectly safe from all the dangers of love is Hell.” (C.S. Lewis, The Four Loves).

And yet, the solution to the inhumanity and sinful condition is love. Perfect love.

As I closed the end of part 1 of this blog I mentioned that God is love. That God sent his son that whoever would believe in him, would have eternal life. That love does no wrong to it’s neighbor. That love is the fulfillment of the law.

But back we come to our problem. If you go back several blogs you will see the problem we wrestle with the ten commandments. We cannot fulfill them. As I quoted Erwin McManus in an earlier blog, he suggests this on the 10 commandments:

“The ten commandments are not heaven’s standards… They are not God’s attempt to pull us up beyond the human into the spiritual. The Ten Commandments are the lowest possible standard of humane living. Stop and consider what they demand of us. Maybe it would help if we just rephrased them in everyday language. Here goes: ‘hey could you stop killing each other? Oh, yeah, and by the way, could you not steal each other’s stuff? And it would be really helpful if you wouldn’t lie to each other and here’s a thought, could you not take other people’s husbands and sort of, like, keep your own? Upon reflection, these are unreasonable right? How could anyone be expected to live up to those? Only God could do that, right? Why don’t we get it? Anything below these standards is choosing to live like an animal, a barbarian. The Ten Commandments don’t call us to extraordinary life; they call us to stop dehumanizing each other. The law is the minimum of what it means to be human.”.

And yet, when we read it, we still find ourselves disqualifying from being able to love perfectly, and fulfill the law by loving perfectly.

“There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear., because fear has to do with punishment, the one who fears is not made perfect in love. 1 John 4:17-19

Who can love this perfectly? And unconditionally? God alone.

So where is our help?

Let me unpack this great love God has for us, and how Christ became the willing perfectly human, perfectly god in the flesh, able to love sinlessly and flawlessly to rescue us from our fallen state by taking on the consequences for all of our sins onto himself, (perfect justice placed on Christ’s sacrifice on The cross) allowing us to go free and receive the benefits of the good news of grace and unmerited favor of God. We go free. If we believe on what Jesus did, who he was, and receive it, there is now no more condemnation for our sins and offenses. Jesus paid it all. It is a simple message that we complicate so much. We go free. All we have to do, is believe, by faith, that Jezus is who he said he was.

Check this out, to understand the love of God and the concepts of mercy and justice a little more. Often hearing about the simple message of the good news: I go free because of what he did… No more guilt, no more striving, no more consequence for failure, because he took it all, is to mind boggling to believe. It just can’t be that simple. And yet, despite it’s simplicity, what we wrestle with internally is the sin nature within us, vying for complete control of one’s own self, independence, and distrust of the character and goodness of God and we often find ourselves stuck here:
“The mind set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so. And those who are in the flesh cannot please God.” So again we find ourselves stuck.

The solution is faith, not works.

“if we confess with our mouth that Jesus is Lord (God), and believe in our heart that God raised him from the dead, we shall be saved.” Romans 10:9-10.

If we believe in Him and place our faith in him that he is the messiah prophesied to come and redeem his people, and can understand that God loves ALL of us, and desires none of us to be outside of fellowship with him, our faith saves us, and we are born again. Symbolically, we die to our old sinful nature with his death on the cross where he takes all of our sin and shame, and even our sickness and infirmities onto himself on the cross, dying in our place – as death is the natural requirement to pay the consequences of sin – and in his resurrection, symbolically, we are raised to life with him, having the power and spirit of God now indwelling us to use that power of the new nature to exhibit self-control and resist the sinful temptations we face, and by his strength at work in us, we are given the power to overcome the sin nature still at war within us. His spirit gives us strength to choose or live according to the nature of Christ, and love when we thought we couldn’t, to really genuinely forgive when we felt incapable, to resist yielding to independence and
Ride, and the people pleasing, performance trap, and accept and receive God’s grace and unmerited favor towards us. We must only believe.

There is so much more to unpack about this simple, and yet so difficult concept to believe, about the love of God to plan a way to bring our wayward independent hearts back to a trusting relationship in the God who created us, loved us, grieved at our independence, pursued us with al, his heart and made a way for us to have a perfectly restored relationship with him. All our sins he remembers no more. When we believe in Jesus, all God sees is the blood that Jesus shed on our behalf, taking all our sin, shame and imperfections upon himself, and he just sees us as his creation, dearly loved by God.

I have much more to say on the subject but not enough time today! Stay tuned. I may unpack this unconditional love further in my Wednesday blog! And again next Monday, on understanding God’s love!

Stay tuned this Friday as well, as I discuss sexual abuse in my series on abuse on Fridays.

Take care, and God bless!


What is the gospel? Why is the message of Jesus good news? Why is it that his death and resurrection are so important in the christian message of God’s love and grace? And how does it help us, if we are locked away, stuck in a sinful condition, unable to help ourselves be sinless and perfect? Why is it important that Jesus rose from the dead to make the Christian religion credible? I believe the Christian message of God being perfectly loving and merciful and perfectly just to be fundamentally flawed without Jesus’ claim that he is God, and without his resurrection from the dead, and his sacrifice on the cross for sinful mankind, it is impossible for God to be both perfectly just and perfectly merciful. If he were perfectly just, he would have to punish every sin, making no one eligible on the basis of ‘works of righteousness’ to earn his favor, for everyone sins and fails and is flawed. But to compromise that justice, he would no longer be perfectly just. The same is true of his perfect mercy. If he were perfectly merciful, he would have to dismiss every single human sin and flaw, and compromise his standard of justice for the oppressed. How does he then remedy this problem? We continually make assaults against the character of God when some moral code is broken… Someone takes an innocent life and we are fuming inside at the injustice if it all, daring even to blame the God of heaven as to why he allowed this injustice to occur, standing idly by, appearing uncaring to our cause. Do we not see from this example alone that we are made in the image of God, sharing with him the same value of both mercy and justice? How then does this dilemma get resolved? What is the perfect solution to the mercy/judgment problem? I believe the answer lies in the person of Jesus Christ. If he is who he says he is -the son of God, (the second person of the triune Godhead), and if his claim, and the claims of the many witnesses who testified to the fact that he was indeed resurrected from the grave are indeed completely true, then Christ MUST be the messiah, sent to redeem mankind from something far more than the Jewish believers of his time period could see. He was after something so much more important than rescuing his people from the Roman occupation of the nation of Israel. He had a much greater mandate, a free gift offer to all who would receive his message, and was living out the grand narrative of the mission of God -to redeem the hearts of his creation back to himself!

We will circle back to that mission in a few minutes. Let’s explore a bit further. What is it in us that desires perfection so much, that we strive for it in every area of our life? What is it in us that if we fail, we lose all hope and believe we are a complete failure? What is it that causes us to want to earn favor, recognition, love, appreciation, affirmation, success? Is it not the very nature of the divine, indicating we were created in his image, his image that is perfect, and unflawed, unconditional, and unending? Why do we have trouble accepting death? As if innately, we knew death was never meant to be the natural condition of mankind? Why do we believe we have good within us and fight so hard against ‘the bad’ or ‘imperfect parts’ of our being? Because somewhere inside of us, we know. We know we were meant for more. Romans 1:19 suggests ‘that which is known about God is evident within them, for God made it evident to them, for since the creation of the world his invisible attributes, his eternal power and divine nature, having been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse”. The evidence is in. We have inherited qualities that God himself possesses, we long for (often unaware) that which was lost to us because of sin, independence and separation from God. For instance, the longing for love that completes us, that is fulfilling, and that never ends, we long for freedom, and mercy and justice and to be perfect. And I could go on and on. But we cannot earn perfection, and the human love we seek after is fundamentally flawed, it ends, it fails us, eludes us. The purpose we seek in life, we try and fill with lesser loves, like success in a career, and we are often still left unfulfilled. As if we were made for something more substantial to sustain the largeness of our hearts. We grieve and cry out against injustice, often unaware that the name for injustice comes from the root issue of sin. Someone’s sin and evil mistreatment of another. What is the solution to this madness? To the cycle we spend our lives on trying to live for ourselves and make ourselves happy, and work toward being perfect… For what? For who? Why?

And love… The pursuit that leaves us so often in so much pain…. I want to share this quote with you, before I delve into the solution that the godhead came up with that the early believers that Jesus was messiah simply called ‘the good news.’ Today, we will find out why. But first, let me share this quote with you, from C.S. Lewis:

“To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything, and your heart will be certainly wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal. Wrap it careful with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket -safe, dark, motionless, airless -it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable… The only place outside Heaven where you can be perfectly safe from all the dangers of love is Hell.”
(The four loves)

And yet the solution to the inhumanity of man, is love.

“Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.” 1 John 4:8

God is love.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his only son, that whoever would believe in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16

“Love does no wrong to a neighbor, love therefore is the fulfillment of the law.” Romans 13:10

“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.” John 10:11

“greater love has no one than this; to lay his own life down for his friends.” john 15:13

Stay tuned…. Part 2 of ‘Good news – what is the gospel’ will be coming later this afternoon.


According to Christian theology, the Old Testament is rich with glimpses of a promised Messiah. In fact, many Jewish people believe that there is still a messiah to come. The main difference is that the Jewish population for the most part, (excluding Messianic Jews), believe a Messiah has not yet come, and a few have departed altogether from the belief in an actual messiah as a man or ruler to come about, but other experts rather interpret the messianic prophecies through ideas such as a Eutopian society or other ways to explain the passages that seem to indicate a messiah will come. Some modern day Jewish people are completely unaware of anything to do with a Messiah at all. Christians, on the other hand, believe the Messiah has already come, only that he came in a way that the Jewish people of Jesus Christ’s era did not recognize him, perhaps because they were expecting him to come in the same fashion as all the other Jewish heroes -someone who would sit on the throne of David and break off the tyranny of their Roman oppressors of the day.

But to really unpack the glimpses of the Messiah to come, we must examine the Old Testament to watch the stunning unfolding of Jewish prophecy foreshadowing a Messiah that seems to fit the portrait of Jesus.

The prophet Isaiah revealed the manner of his birth – born of a virgin.
The prophet Micah pinpointed his place of birth -Bethlehem.
Both the book of Genesis and the prophet Jeremiah described that he would be a descendant of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, of the tribe of Judah, the lineage of King David.
The Book of poetry known as the Psalms foretold his betrayal, his accusation by false witnesses, his manner of death, (crucifixion -pierced in his hands and feet -even though crucifixion was not even a part of Jewish law at the time of this old testament writing as it still wasn’t part of their judicial system in the time of Jesus.) The book of Psalms even predicted he would not decay but would be resurrected.
There are even scriptures suggesting that he would be called a Nazarene (someone who lived in Nazereth).

Perhaps the most stunning scripture in the Old testament as a prophecy foreshadowing the messiah comes out of Isaiah 53:3-9, 12.

“He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering. He was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we were healed. We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the Lord has laid upon him the iniquity of us all.
He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth, he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth. By oppression and judgment, he was taken away, and who can speak of his descendants? For he was cut off from the land of the living; for the transgression of my people he was stricken. He was assigned a grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death, though he had done no violence nor was any deceit in his mouth. For he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.”

Ok, let’s try and unpack this a little, as there is so much more symbolism and prophecy in the old testament that points to Jesus as Messiah.

Re: the virgin birth, see Luke 1:26-35 for confirmation in the new testament of the old testament prophecy.
As for his birth in Bethlehem, Jesus should not have been born in Nazareth since his family lived in Galilee. But guess what? There happened to be a census that required every man and his family to register in the town of his birth. Since Joseph (Mary’s husband) was a descendant of king David, he was required to take the long trip to Bethlehem to register for the census. Mary was with child as they set out on the journey to register for the census in Bethlehem. While they were there, she gave birth to Jesus in a manger. (Luke 2:1-7)

As for the lineage, there are 2 found in the new testament, one found in Matthew 1:1-17, and the other in Luke 3:23-38, indicating Jesus was descended from what was prophesied.

Jesus’ betrayal was foretold and fulfilled in Matthew 26:47-50, and again in Mark 14:43-49, Luke 22:47-53, and John 18:2-8. Judas, the one betraying Jesus, was filled with remorse after making a deal for 30 pieces of silver to betray Jesus into the hands of the officials who would bring him to trial. Judas’s story is found in Matthew 26:14-19, and again in Matthew 27:1-10. This particular passage also is a fulfillment of a prophecy found in Zechariah 11:13 that Jesus would be betrayed for 30 pieces of silver. ( I encourage you to read the scriptures for further insight as I do not have enough time or room to unveil all of this in one blog! )

As for the false witnesses, while Jesus was on trial, the chief priests of the day had incited false witnesses to come forward and testify against him (Matthew 26:59-63), also fulfilling the prophecy that Jesus remained silent before his accusers, from the prophecy in Isaiah 53 above.

As for the nail scarred hands, and the death by crucifixion, the fact that the Jewish people of the day were under Roman occupation, they appealed to the Roman governor, asking that he be crucified under Roman law which allowed crucifixion as a form of punishment, thereby allowing the prophecy of his death by crucifixion to be possible. Without believing, and without knowing, they had a hand in fulfilling Scripture! Pilate, the roman governor, consented to the cries and wishes of the people begging for his crucifixion even though he himself, saw that Jesus was not worthy of such a punishment. But in an effort to gain the people’s favor, he released Jesus to be flogged and then executed by means of crucifixion.

Where it suggests that Jesus was assigned the death of the wicked (crucifixion) he was hung on a cross between two thieves (Matt. 27:38). Where it talks of him being despised and rejected, the very next verse, Matthew 27:39 says that those passing by ‘were hurling abuse at him’ and it goes on for several verses afterwards with their taunting and rejection and accusations, and mocking words.

Familiar with suffering? Not only was he flogged with whips with chunks of bone in them, and had a crown of thorns placed on his head, but he had spent the evening prior to his arrest in a garden, weeping with such turmoil at what he knew he was about to endure and experiencing the burden of carrying the weight of the sin of the world upon his shoulders… So much so did he experience this sorrow that he endured a rare condition that causes the human body to sweat drops of blood due to excessive stress and anxiety. (Luke 22:42-44).

The disciples had even arranged a place of burial for the body of Jesus after his death, not believing he would literally rise from the dead and return to them 3 days later fully alive! But ironically, they arranged a burial site from a rich man named Joseph, a member of the council, who had been waiting for the messiah, who allowed them to bury the body of Jesus in his family burial site!

Coincidence???

There are so many more signs and prophecies from the Old testament that give sufficient evidence that not only was Jesus the Messiah, but that he is part of the triune God, another point of contention between the Jewish belief and the christian. The Jewish people do bit claim to believe in the trinity, whereas Christians, believe along with Jesus when he claimed to be the son of God and that he and the Father were one, but also suggested another would come, the holy spirit, the third person of the trinity, sent as the comforter for those who believe that Jesus not only is Messiah, but the son of God.

Sadly I do not have enough time to give away the whole chapter of this book, indicating signs and customs performed in the old testament, and even today that are meant to be symbols pointing to a messiah.

Why don’t the Jewish people believe that Jesus is Messiah if there is so much evidence to support that he fulfills the old testament prophecies? Again, as I mentioned at the beginning, the Jewish people of his day, though ripe with anticipation for a messiah to come, expected him to come to deliver them from the Roman occupation, when God, through the Messiah who was to deliver not only Israel, but the whole world, was up to something bigger… A far larger plan was in place than what they expected, and their hearts could not embrace the grander narrative of what was beginning to unfold. I absolutely mean no disrespect whatsoever to the Jewish people! On the contrary, I am grateful to them for the introduction to the God of the Jews, the God that I worship, but along with Messianic Jews, who embrace Christ as the Jewish messiah and savior of all mankind, I embrace Christ as my messiah & savior as well! I would be happy to discuss this further with anyone interested! But sadly and unfortunately I cannot give away everything in one blog!!

Until next Monday, where I will unveil the mission of Jesus and the good news he was bringing to all mankind, you will simply have to stay tuned!!

%d bloggers like this: