A good friend shared this quote with me. It says, whatever we think we need today...Jesus is. Jesus is unique, one of a kind. He has been said to be the greatest leader who has ever lived. He is the most influential person to have lived on our planet. No one can be compared to Him. As we read the Bible, we see that everything points to Him. The Old Testament points us forward towards Jesus and The New Testament points us back to His life and what He did. First and foremost, Jesus is God. He left the splendor and majesty of heaven and became human. He lived as we live. He has been where we find ourselves. He knew grief and anger. He wept. He was tired and hungry and thirsty. He was crucified for crimes He did not commit. Jesus died, was buried and rose from the dead...victorious. Jesus and Jesus alone is the only all sufficient Savior off the world. He has promised to come again, in glory and defeat evil for all eternity.
When we look at the Old Testament, we see that God has many different names. The ancients believed God's name was so holy they could not pronounce it out loud or write it in its entirety. So, they gave God names that described what he did for them. He was called Lord, God Almighty, provider, redeemer and many more. We can look at Jesus in the same way. He gave Himself names...Son of man, alpha and omega. There are seven I AM statements in Johns gospel that Jesus uses to describe Himself. But there is more. Because just like the ancients we too give Jesus names based on where we are in our lives and what we need. There are many names for God. Whole books have been written on this subject. But here are a few that might be helpful for you.
When we are feeling down on ourselves, we sometimes question if we even have a place in heaven. But Jesus was a carpenter...a builder. In john's gospel Jesus tells us “In my Father's house there are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, so that where I am, there you may be also.” John 14:2. As believers we have no reason to doubt that Jesus wants to spend eternity with us and there is a place prepared especially for us.
Jesus’ words in John 16:33 remind us that Jesus is the giver of peace and courage. We live in a world that is ruled by the evil one, the prince of darkness. He specializes in lies, division, deception and chaos. Jesus knows this about him. So, this is the promise He gives us, "I have said this to you so that in me you may have peace. In the world you will face troubles. But take courage, I have overcome the world. He also tells us in John 14:27, "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not let them be afraid.”
The prophet Isaiah tells us in 7:4 that a virgin will conceive and bear a son and His name will be Immanuel, which means God with us. And in the beginning of Johns gospel we read that the Word...Jesus...became flesh and dwelt among us. At the end of Matthews gospel Jesus promises to never leave us or forsake us. We never walk alone. EVER. He is a companion and guide wherever we go.
Jesus is the one who gives us strength. We read in Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things in Christ who gives me strength.” We are not always strong and fierce. Sometimes we feel tired, weak and wimpy. But it is when we are at our weakest that Jesus is at His strongest. He will give us exactly what we need to move through our challenges and struggles.
He is the bearer of burdens. In Matthew 11:28 Jesus says, "Come to me all you who are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” There is a lot going on in the world and in our lives and sometimes the weight becomes unbearable. But Jesus has promised to carry the load for us. We can take it to Him, and He will lift the burden off our shoulders.
Jesus is a teacher, not just of scripture, not just showing us Gods love. He taught us how to pray. And the prayer He taught the disciples nearly 2,000 years ago is the prayer we pray every Sunday. Some of us pray it every day. Some call the prayer The Lord's Prayer and others call it the Our Father.
We look to Jesus for calm in the middle of storms. One day Jesus and the disciples got into a boat to cross the Sea of Galilee. Jesus was exhausted and went to sleep. A fierce storm came up, tossing the boat around and filling it with water. In a panic the disciples woke Jesus up and shouted do something! In His exhaustion Jesus stood and commanded the winds to be still. The disciples looked at one another and said who is this any way that even the wind and waves obey Him? Luke 8:22-25. But if they would remember Psalm 46:10 we would hear God say...” Be still and know that I AM God” How many of us have been is a storm of one kind or another and felt like waves were crashing over us and we cried out DO SOMETHING? Jesus calmed the storm that day. He will calm the storms in our lives too.
All of this is to say, Jesus is all we need. He is sufficient. In Acts 4:12 we see that Jesus saves. Hebrews 12:2 reminds us that Jesus is the author and perfect for of our faith. Jesus blesses us. We see that in Ephesians 1:3. Jesus provides. That comes from Philippians 4:19. In Him we are loved...John 3:16. He answers prayers and works miracles. Luke 6:38 and Luke 22:50. And in Him all things are made new. Revelation 21:5.
Whatever we think we need...Jesus is.
In His grip
Pastor Matt W