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The Jesus Dilemma - Part 1, Old Testament Witness
Miles McPherson - May 1, 2011

Message Recap

Who is Jesus? Everyone seems to have his/her own opinion: Jesus is Savior, friend, leader, judge, teacher, and so on. But as we begin this new message series, Pastor Miles’ goal is to reveal to us who Jesus really is.

In the far future, the sun of our solar system will “go supernova”, or essentially explode after it has burned up all of its fuel. (Don’t worry – this isn’t for some billion years). If the human race is still here when that happens, we will have two choices: stay and die or leave and find a new home.

But even in the present time, we have a similar predicament. We can ignore the teaching of Jesus and just continue with things as they are (stay and die) or we can accept Him as Savior and follow the rules that He has put down for us (find new life).

If you want to choose the second option, the question remains: Who is Jesus?

Miles recently went to his parents’ house with his sister and was stunned to see that there were no pictures of him in his parent’s living room as he expected to see. When Miles asked his parents about this, they directed him to another room were there he found many pictures of himself. When we read the New Testament we may have a reaction like Pastor Miles had in his parents’ living room. We know there is evidence of Jesus in the New Testament, but where are His baby pictures?

Jesus doesn’t simply exist in the red letters of our Bible; His “baby pictures” are all over the Old Testament!

If we turn back to Exodus 3:2-4, we find Moses in an encounter with a burning bush that is not consumed into ash: And the Angel of the Lord appeared to him in a flame of fire from the midst of a bush…So when the Lord saw that he turned aside to look, God called to him from the midst of the bush… In these verses, the being that appears in the burning bush is called “The Angel of the Lord,” “Lord,” and “God.” This is an encounter with Jesus, the Son of God. This being in the burning bush later identifies Himself when he says, “I am the God of your father—the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob” (verse 6).

Further back in our Bibles we find the account of creation. Then God said, ‘Let Us…’” (Genesis 1:26) He does not say, “I will” or “Let me,” but “Let Us.” This is another way we can know that Jesus has been present since the beginning of time. He was with His heavenly Father and part of the miraculous creation process.

Now let’s go forward to some of the red writing in the New Testament, where Jesus Himself gives evidence of His Old Testament existence. In John 8 Jesus is questioned by the Pharisees (the religious leaders of the day), who challenge Him:

“…You say, ‘If anyone keeps My word he shall never taste death.’ Are You greater than our father Abraham, who is dead? And the prophets are dead. Who do You make Yourself out to be?”

Jesus answered, “If I honor Myself, My honor is nothing. It is My Father who honors Me, of whom you say that He is your God. Yet you have not known Him, but I know Him. And if I say, ‘I do not know Him,’ I shall be a liar like you; but I do know Him and keep His word. Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day, and he saw it and was glad.”

Then the Jews said to Him, “You are not yet fifty years old, and have You seen Abraham?”

Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM.”

Then they took up stones to throw at Him; but Jesus hid Himself and went out of the temple, going through the midst of them, and so passed by.

John 8:52-59

Jesus, who has at this point only lived on earth for a little over 30 years, indicates in this passage that He is actually older than Abraham, the long-dead and long-honored Father of the Jewish faith. Beyond this, He calls Himself the name of God the Most High, “I AM,” demonstrating that He and the Father are One in being. The Pharisees are so angered and puzzled by these powerful statements that they move to stone Him.

At many points in this message series, Pastor Miles will show us more examples of Jesus’ appearance in the Old Testament, the self-revelation of His deity in the New Testament, and also what others said about Him, including His spiritual enemy, the devil. Pastor Miles will continue to show us that Jesus has been around in times of the entire history of the Bible and He still wants to be in your life today.

As in the example regarding the supernova, we have an extremely important choice to make regarding Jesus and the future of our lives. Let Him in and find out who He is!

The Jesus Dilemma

This 6-part series investigates who Jesus really is, examining various viewpoints of Jesus throughout history to today. Today's message looks back to the Old Testament to investigate what we can learn about Jesus prior to His life on earth.

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