ASK Commentary
May 1, 2006 

Christ, Messiah, and the Gospel

Commentary for May 1, 2006 — The Central Message of Christianity

The resurrection of Jesus is the proof of His being the Messiah (the Christ) of Jews and Gentiles. This is the Gospel. This is the core message of Christianity. This vital subject is more thoroughly discussed in the “Newsletter for May 1, 2006” which introduces the article for this month, “The Gospel of Messiah.” This is an issue that should be non-controversial, but in today’s world, there are scores of recent non-fiction books, novels, and movies that attempt to dissuade, disrupt, seemingly disabuse the truth of that Gospel of Messiah. This is partially the case because the prima facia evidence of Jesus’ resurrection is not possible in the present day simply because none of us are eyewitnesses (yet) of His resurrection. We will not be eyewitnesses until our spiritual resurrection when we shall see Him alive:

“Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it does not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, WHEN HE SHALL APPEAR, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is [now, at present].”

1 John 3:2

However, we do have in our possession the 1st person eyewitness testimony of Matthew, Mark, and John in their Gospels, the 1st person testimony of James, Peter, John (again), Jude, and Paul, as well as the other eyewitness accounts compiled by Luke in his Gospel and Acts, all based on the fact that Jesus was resurrected from the dead and that He is Lord and Messiah (used together some 113 times in the New Testament). The apostle Paul makes precisely this point:
“For to this end Christ [Messiah] both died, and rose, and revived, that he might be Lord both of the dead and living.”

Romans 14:9

Those who oppose Jesus as the Messiah (as the Christ) MUST discredit the witnesses of Scripture because it is their only basis to deny the resurrection and to deny that Jesus is the Messiah. If they admit the witnesses told the truth, then they must admit to the truth of the resurrection, and they must also admit His Messiahship. The Messiah is the Ruler — their Ruler — their Lord. Those who deny the resurrection simply (in the hidden recesses of their soul) do not in any way want to submit to Jesus as their Ruler, their Master, their Lord, their King, their Son of God, their Messiah. It is remarkable that such people are all too willing to submit to the impersonal Law that brings death (Romans 7:5, 8:2; 1 Corinthians 15:56), rather than the Lawgiver who brings life (Isaiah 33:22), the Lawgiver who Himself puts the Law to death (Romans 7:4, 6). Those who do not believe that Jesus is the Messiah are not free in their hearts, they are not free in their minds, and they are not free in their souls:
“For he that is called in the Lord, being a servant [slave], is the Lord's freeman: likewise also he that is called, being free, is Christ's servant [Messiah’s slave].”

1 Corinthians 7:22

With the Law, you have nothing except death. With Jesus the resurrected Messiah, you have everything (even the divine nature!):
“But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ [the Messiah]. I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ [the Messiah] Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ [Messiah], And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ [Messiah], the righteousness which is of God by faith.”

Philippians 3:7–9

“Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ
[Messiah]. For in him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily. And you are complete in him [Messiah] …”

Colossians 2:8–10

Those who believe that Jesus is Messiah willingly submit like Paul does:
“For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ [Messiah], of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named.”

Ephesians 3:14–15

Some day, at the conclusion of the ages (Revelation 11:12) every intelligent being will submit and confess that Jesus Messiah is Lord:
“Wherefore God also has highly exalted him [Jesus], and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ [Messiah] is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

Philippians 2:9–11

This is our legacy and the legacy of every human being. As a believer acknowledging Christ as Lord of your life is vital to your own peace of mind. It is a gift from God not to be lightly dismissed (2 Corinthians 9:13–14), “Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift” (verse 15).

David Sielaff
david@askelm.com

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