I've been meditating this week on who Jesus is. In all the old testament books Jesus was foreshadowed, He is made known through dreams, visions, revelations. It is written that Jesus was present with God at Creation and followed the Israelites through the desert, Jesus protected Shadrack, Meshack and Abendago from being burned in the fiery furnace. Jesus was present, yet he was still veiled.
The Jesus of the New Testament epistles is the baby born in human flesh, He took on human likeness to reveal to mankind the Father and to sacrifice Himself for our sin so we can see the greatness of the Father. Jesus was fully man and fully God. 1 Timothy 2:5-6 says, "For there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus, 6 who gave himself as a ransom for all people. This has now been witnessed to at the proper time." Jesus gave himself as ransom to unveil the gap between God and His people. Only through Jesus is that gap made possible - what a sacrifice and an act of obedience on behalf of Jesus.
In Hebrews it is said, " But we do see Jesus, who was made lower than the angels for a little while, now crowned with glory and honor because he suffered death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone."(2:9) That tasting of death is for everyone, but is only made available through Jesus - Jesus is the only way to the Father as expressed throughout the book of John - that very same John who was beloved of Jesus and who wrote the book of Revelation. John is our best descriptor of Jesus because he was the closest person on earth to truly know Jesus. What a sad day it will be to stand before God and confess that you never believed Jesus was God. Jesus is equal in value to God.
Jesus told him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me. If you had really known me, you would know who my Father is. From now on, you do know him and have seen him!" Philip said, "Lord, show us the Father, and we will be satisfied." Jesus replied, "Have I been with you all this time, Philip, and yet you still don't know who I am? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father! So why are you asking me to show him to you?"8
Then in Revelation Jesus is revealed in power. We finally see the Jesus clothed in glory and Majesty - He is fully God - ruling and reigning on earth. The kingdom has finally come and justice is brought upon the entire world.
I will never fully understand the sacrifice that Jesus gave on my behalf. I have been grappling all week with just what Jesus gave up for me. There truly are not words to express this, maybe that is why Jesus gave John visions. These visions were so great that even John couldn't express the magnificence and holiness of God.
If you struggle with comprehending the complex relationship between Jesus and God I urge you to read the New Testament book of Revelation - www.blueletterbible.org has a great option to view Strongs definitions as you go to make it easier to understand context.
I wouldn't necessarily read Revelation for prophetic understanding, like I always had. But instead, read the book looking for the relationship of God the Father and His Son Jesus. I have always read Revelation to understand what "is to come" but as I'm diving into this very long expository study I'm beginning to realize that there is far more to this book than prophecy. This whole book is written by the Trinity (Father, Son, Holy Spirit vs 4), which God gave to to show church, what will soon take place, so that we the church will read it and obey - just as Jesus obeyed the Father to bridge the Gap which was veiled by our sin.
Consider that the purpose of Revelation is to
- Exalts Jesus Christ
- Reveal the power and wisdom of God
- Manifest the plan and purpose of God