What Was Jesus All About? By Babatunde Olugboji
Sometimes even believers wonder what the main points of the teaching of Jesus were: from his sermons to his parables and everything in between. We’ll attempt a summary this week.
The teachings of Jesus cover a wide range of issues, from daily conduct to matters of serious eternal consequence. Jesus taught that He was the Messiah, the Son of God, the Savior who has been given all authority in heaven and on earth. (Matthew 28:18) Jesus showed that external obedience to God’s expectations is secondary to commitment to Him from inside of us. He cautioned that unbelievers would face judgement and promised believers an eternal relationship with God.
A non-conformist, Jesus extended respect and opportunity to people from all backgrounds and stations, extending the gift of salvation to all. (Luke 19:7–10) He taught about living right: “Whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them …” (Matthew 7:12) This means that we should treat others the way we want to be treated.
Jesus made it clear that the only route to God was through faith, not obedience to the Law. (Matthew 7:22–28; Luke 7:9) When He was asked about the greatest commandment, He was emphatic that loving God and loving our neighbor were the greatest commandments, adding that those who knew this were “not far from the kingdom of God.” (Mark 12:28–34) He taught that you become a neighbor to others when you help them, illustrating this crucial point with the story of the Good Samaritan. (Luke 10:25–37) Jesus said that sin separates us from God, but that sin is forgivable, and that we should forgive others. (Matthew 6:14; 12:31; John 3:14–18; Luke 7:47)
He taught His followers to pray: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our debts as we also have forgiven our debtors, And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.” (Matthew 6:9–13)
Jesus said He was on earth to preach about the coming Kingdom of God. (Luke 4:43) He declared that He “came to seek and to save the lost,” (Luke 19:10) and that the prophesy of Isaiah 61 applied to Him: “‘The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.’ And he rolled up the scroll and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. And he began to say to them, ‘Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing'” (Luke 4:18–21).
Jesus proclaimed the gospel of God, saying that the kingdom of God is at hand and that people should repent and believe the Good News. (Mark 1:14–15) He said He was God incarnate and the only Savior (John 14:6). And He proved He is who He says He is through His resurrection. (1 Corinthians 13:3–4).
The foregoing, in short, are some of the highlights of what Jesus was all about.
Welcome to October. Have a great week.
Kingdom Dynamics, a weekly column written by Dr. Babatunde Olugboji, the President, Kingdom House, a non-profit organization in New Jersey, USA.
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