There has been a great attack on the person, ministry, and deity of the Lord Jesus Christ as of late, even within the church.
I had a church member that stated it was not important to believe that Jesus Christ was born of a virgin and that He was God to be saved, as long as we believed He was a good person that died for our sins.
There is another quote "Christian group" that holds to the doctrine that God would have never demanded a blood sacrifice and that Jesus went to the cross in vain. That would say that we are saved from His moral life example and by His death. They see His death as a useless event.
Well, for those who embrace the Word of God as true, this is our confession:
We believe in the Lord Jesus Christ: Our confession of FAITH
• The Lord Jesus Christ is the Son of God conceived of the Holy Spirit, born of Mary when she was a virgin, very God and very Man. Jesus was both 100% God and 100% human. God was His Father, and Mary was his mother. He was the Son of God, however, at no time was He ever less than God.
• The Lord Jesus Christ lived His life without sin. If He sinned in any way He would not have been God, and His blood would not have been qualified to be poured on the mercy seat in heaven. The Scriptures say that there can be no remission of sin without the shedding of blood.
• Jesus' death was for the sins of the world. My sin and your sin caused His death. Christ our Savior died for our sins, was buried and rose again the third day according to the Scriptures and appeared to His disciples.
• Jesus was raised from the dead. This signified His supreme Lordship over death and the grave. Our physical and spiritual death was the natural result of our separation from God through sin.
• We believe in the bodily ascension of Jesus Christ to heaven, His exaltation as Lord to the right hand of the Father, and His literal, physical return the second time for a glorious Church. Jesus now reigns as the immortal, invisible King who will one day establish His rule on earth at the appointed time of the Father.
We Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ: Our confession of FAITH:
We believe that our Lord Jesus Christ was begotten, not created, very God, truly God, and truly man. He was born of a virgin named Mary, lived a sinless life, died a vicarious and atoning death for the sins of the world, resurrected bodily for our justification, and now reigns in glory until all things be put under His feet.
The Son is the Word flesh-covered, the One Begotten, and has existed with the Father from the beginning. Jesus Christ is God manifest in the flesh. Jesus lived a life without sin and offered Himself as the perfect sacrifice for the sins of the world.
Dying on a cross, He shed His blood for the forgiveness of every person's sin. He died physically on the cross but He did not die spiritually. He was not chained or tortured in hell but went there victorious over sin, death and the grave and revealed eternal judgment to the kingdom of darkness.
After spending three full days and nights in the grave as He said He would, He arose from the dead to show His power over death, sin and the grave. He ascended into heaven where He lives to make intercession for all believers. He will return one day as He went to establish His eternal Kingdom upon the earth.
For He is worthy, for He is worthy, for He is worthy.
To think, that God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit, decided sometime in eternity past to create ALL THINGS, both that which is visible and that which us not visible.
In that plan God (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) decided to create man, and not just create man, but create him in their image. WOW! And in this decision, God (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit), knew that man would act in a decision of rebellion of God's Word and fall from relationship, fellowship, and image.
It was in the heart of God (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) to redeem man even before man was created. WOW!
To do this, the Son of God (WORD) had to take on, become flesh and walk among us and die for us. The One who had a hand in creating all that is visible and invisible now has lowered Himself to be wrapped in the flesh of man.
He died, He was buried and He arose from the dead and the grave. He is now seated at the right hand of the Father in Heaven. He is the radiant glory of the Father. He is high and lifted up. He is much more superior than the angels and has a name that is much more excellent then theirs.
Hebrews 1:1-4 ESV Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, (2) but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world. (3) He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, (4) having become as MUCH superior to angels as the name he has inherited is MORE excellent than theirs.
With the disciples there was a PROGRESSION OF FAITH.
Faith was not instantaneous with the followers of Christ. They started out just like us. They heard Jesus speak and they began their walk of following Him.
But, they had to grow from faith to faith, just as we do. Let's look at their progression of faith and see if we can apply it to our walk.
FIRST: Our Lord Jesus came on the scene and two of the disciples of John the Baptist leaves John to follow our Lord.
Therefore, we have example number one. We are not to focus our attention on the messenger, the one who speaks about the light, for that person is not the object of our faith. The purpose of the messenger is to take us to the light, or in this case, the Lord Jesus Christ. In our first Progression of Faith we turn our focus from church, the preacher, or a TV evangelist and set our faith on Christ and start following Him.
John 1:35-39 ESV The next day again John was standing with two of his disciples, (36) and he looked at Jesus as he walked by and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God!” (37) The two disciples heard him say this, and they followed Jesus. (38) Jesus turned and saw them following and said to them, “What are you seeking?” And they said to him, “Rabbi” (which means Teacher), “where are you staying?” (39) He said to them, “Come and you will see.” So they came and saw where he was staying, and they stayed with him that day, for it was about the tenth hour.
The Revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ:
In the study of the Book of Philippians we will use a lot of Paul's other writings to verify what he said. In doing so, we are letting the Bible translate the Bible.
One of the joys that Paul embraced is receiving revelation from the Holy Spirit concerning our Lord Jesus Christ and then imparting that revelation to us. That revelation brought about two major changes. The first was joy that came out as a song to sing. The second was a renewed mind and a renewed thought pattern.
According to the Apostle Paul everyone has a song, a hymn, and a spiritual song.
Ephesians 5:19-20 ESV addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart, (20) giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,
Colossians 3:16-17 ESV Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. (17) And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
Paul brought forth a song or hymn concerning the revelation he received concerning our Lord Jesus Christ.
In the song, in the praise, and in the thanksgiving, we find the object of it all. It is not singing just to sing, or praising out of the zeal of happy emotions, or giving thanks when it is convenient, but doing all of these things from the revelation of who our Lord Jesus Christ is and what He has done for us.
Philippians 2:5-11 ESV Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, (6) who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, (7) but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. (8) And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. (9) Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, (10) so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, (11) and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Matthew 16:15-16 ESV He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” (16) Simon Peter replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”
Colossians 1:13-19 ESV He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, (14) in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. (15) He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. (16) For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. (17) And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. (18) And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. (19) For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell,
Jesus was raised from the dead with a glorified body. This signified His supreme Lordship over death, the grave and sin. Our physical and spiritual death was the natural result of our separation from God through sin. Our Lord settled this once and for all for all who will believe.
We believe in the bodily ascension of Jesus Christ to heaven, His exaltation as Lord to the right hand of the Father, and His literal, physical return the second time for a glorious Church. Jesus now reigns as the immortal, invisible King who will one day establish His rule on earth at the appointed time.
Matthew 16:15 ESV He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?”
The Word teaches us that our Lord Jesus Christ was begotten, not created, very God, truly God, and truly man. He was born of Mary, who was a virgin. He lived a sinless life, died a vicarious and atoning death for the sins of the world, resurrected bodily for our justification, and now reigns in glory until all things be put under His feet. The Son is the Word flesh-covered, the One Begotten, and has existed with the Father from the beginning.
Jesus Christ is God manifest in the flesh. Jesus lived a life without sin and offered Himself as the perfect sacrifice for the sins of the world. Dying on a cross, He shed His blood for the forgiveness of every person's sin. He died physically on the cross but He did not die spiritually. Our Lord Jesus Christ did not need to be "born again", but died and paid for our sin nature so that we could be born again.
He was not chained or tortured in hell, but went there victorious over sin, death and the grave and revealed eternal judgment to the kingdom of darkness. He arose from the dead after three days and three nights to show His power over death, sin and the grave. He ascended into heaven where He lives to make intercession for all believers. He will return one day as He went, to establish His eternal Kingdom upon the earth.
Charles Morris. Founder and Senior Pastor of RSIM USA.