Why Study the Life of Christ?
I. Jesus shows us what God is like–He shows us God (Jn.1:18; 14:7)
A. Jesus shows God’s love (Jn. 3:16).
B. Jesus demonstrates God’s power–over nature, over disease, over demonic powers, over death.
C. Jesus shows us God’s salvation (Rom. 3:23-26).
II. The record of the works of Jesus gives us faith (Jn. 20:30, 31).
A. The records of the life of Jesus are selective.
B. The records tell what Jesus did.
III. When we see the life of Jesus, we see the glory of God which will transform our lives (2 Cor. 3:18; Jn. 14:7).
A. The knowledge of Jesus transformed the people who crucified Jesus (Acts 2).
B. A lack of seeing the glory of God caused the degeneration of the morals of the Gentiles (Rom. 1:18ff).
IV. Gives us all we need for life and godliness (2 Pet. 1:3).
A. Salvation is in Christ–forgiveness (Eph. 1:3, 7).
B. Guidance from God comes through Christ (Heb. 1:1, 2).
C. Power for life comes through Christ (Phil. 4:13; 1 Tim. 1:12; 1 Jn. 4:4).
V. Jesus shows us how to live. A study of His life provides us a pattern for life (1 Pet. 2:11, 12, 21).
VI. Jesus is God’s message to us (Jn. 1:1, 2, 14).
A. He is a message of love (Jn. 3:16; Gal. 2:20; Rom. 5:7, 8).
B. He is a message of salvation (Rom. 3:23-26; Eph. 2:1, 2).
C. He is a message of power shown in His works.
VII. Jesus is The Way (Jn. 14:6).
A. Jesus doesn’t just tell us how to find life; He takes us by the hand and leads and strengthens us along the journey.
B. Without Jesus, “We can’t get there from here.” Without Him there is no way (cf. Rom. 3:23-26; Gal. 3:1-13).
VIII. Jesus is The Truth (Jn. 14:6).
A. The truth about the existence of God.
B. The truth about love.
C. The truth about how to live.
D. The truth about life after death.
E. The truth about forgiveness.
IX. Jesus is The Life (Jn. 14:6).
A. Christ lives in the Christian (Gal. 2:20).
B. We cannot give each other life by holding one another up; life results from something (someone) in us.
Conclusion: Jesus came so that we might have a more abundant life (Jn. 10:10). The gospel accounts were written so that we might believe and through believing have this life (Jn. 20:30, 31). If we come to know Christ, we know that we have this life (1 Jn. 5:13). We come to know Christ by learning about Him and keeping His commandments (1 Jn. 2:3).
William T. (Bill) Lambert, EdD
Professor Emeritus – New Testament Literature and Interpretation
Searcy, AR 72149-0001