Presentation on theme: "THE LIFE OF CHRIST Lesson 1: The Lord of All Was Born the Servant of All, to Save Us."— Presentation transcript:
THE LIFE OF CHRIST Lesson 1: The Lord of All Was Born the Servant of All, to Save Us
LESSON OUTLINE 1. Jesus Christ, our servant, is the eternal Lord 2. Jesus Christ set aside his glory to save us 3. Jesus Christ, true God and true man, is my Savior
WORSHIP How far would you go to help someone? Would you donate a kidney to a member of your church who is on dialysis? What might keep you from doing this? Am I hesitant because I’m selfish? How good is my health? We might be hesitant to help, no matter how legitimate the need. We can be thankful that God doesn’t work that way! Jesus looked beyond what people deserve and gave us his undeserved kindness. It is amazing to think of what Jesus was willing to do. Read Hebrews 2:14-18 responsively:
WORSHIP Leader: Since the children have flesh and blood, Group: he too shared in their humanity Leader: so that by his death he might destroy him who holds the power of death—that is, the devil— Group: and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death. Leader: For surely it is not angels he helps,
WORSHIP Leader: For this reason he had to be made like his brothers in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, Group: and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people. Leader: Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, Group: he is able to help those who are being tempted.
PRAYER Dear Jesus, your disciple once wrote of the great love the Father has lavished on us that we should be called children of God. Guide and bless our study so that we bow in humble repentance and come away with a renewed awareness that your love led you to come to earth to be our Savior. Amen.
INTRODUCTION Imagine you are ten years old. You have the choice of two paths for your life. If you follow one path, you will end up as the chief executive officer of a large company. If you follow the other path, you will spend your life as a servant in the homes of wealthy people.
INTRODUCTION Which path would you choose? Toward which path would you encourage your ten-year-old child? Most people would pick: CEO. Some might pick serving others. In general, our society associates success and honor with money and power, NOT with being a servant. The term servant doesn’t appeal to many people, because it seems demeaning, a lack of freedom, or failure.
INTRODUCTION In our first lesson, we'll trace the path Jesus took.
1. JESUS CHRIST, OUR SERVANT, IS THE ETERNAL LORD People have called Jesus a lot of different things— from the greatest teacher who ever lived, to impostor, to magic man. Let's get the facts about who he is.
1. JESUS CHRIST, OUR SERVANT, IS THE ETERNAL LORD Read John 1:1-3,14-18 Jesus Christ is called the Word. What radical, yet clear, claims does John make about the Word? (1:1) He is God. What does John tell us about Jesus' existence before he was born as a man? (1:2) He was in existence in the beginning: that is, he is eternal.
1. JESUS CHRIST, OUR SERVANT, IS THE ETERNAL LORD Read John 1:1-3,14-18 Jesus receives credit for creation. What does that tell you about his power? (1:3) His power is equal to the Father’s. All things are under his control.
1. JESUS CHRIST, OUR SERVANT, IS THE ETERNAL LORD Read John 1:1-3,14-18 Some people say Jesus was only a man. Underline some key statements from this passage that you might use to teach them who Jesus really is. “The Word was God.” (1:1) “He was with God in the beginning.” (1:2) “Through him all things were made.” (1:3) “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only.” (1:14) “No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only, who is at the Father’s side, has made him known.” (1:18)
1. JESUS CHRIST, OUR SERVANT, IS THE ETERNAL LORD His Word in My Life You're having lunch with a coworker, and the conversation turns to your spiritual beliefs. Your fellow worker says, "I've read the Bible on occasion and the way I see it, we can learn a lot from the writings of Jesus. In fact, I'd give the Bible equal status with the writings of other ‘holy men' who have lived before us." Build on the respect this person has for the Bible. How might you teach him about Jesus' true identity?
1. JESUS CHRIST, OUR SERVANT, IS THE ETERNAL LORD His Word in My Life Building on that respect, you may want to emphasize the need to look at what the Bible really says, like John 1. It describes Jesus as God from eternity. Jesus is different from any of the other “holy men.” But also speak about sin as the reason Christ came. Proclaim the gospel —the good news that Jesus took away the sin of the world. The message of the Bible is very clear. Either we have to deny the Bible or acknowledge that Jesus is true God—not just a good human being.
1. JESUS CHRIST, OUR SERVANT, IS THE ETERNAL LORD Some colleges offer classes that study the life of Jesus from the same perspective as they would study Shakespeare or Thoreau. They study his words as they would study words of Plato and Socrates. The Bible, however, makes it plain that Jesus Christ, who came as our servant, is our eternal Lord.
2. JESUS CHRIST SET ASIDE HIS GLORY TO SAVE US Think of some things you've had to give up—things like benefits when your company is failing, or sleep when a baby is born! Some people resent having to give up things. Jesus' birth graphically demonstrates what he gave up to be born as a human being—as our Savior. The Bible tells us he didn't resent it. Let's read Matthew's account of the birth of Jesus.
2. JESUS CHRIST SET ASIDE HIS GLORY TO SAVE US Read Matthew 1:18-25 When the angel spoke to Joseph, he called the baby in Mary's womb by two names. Find the two names and discuss what they tell us about the child. (1:21,23) Jesus means “Savior.” Immanuel means “God with us.” Those names tell us Jesus is God who came to save us. How could Mary, a human virgin, give birth to the Son of God? (1:20) The child was from the Holy Spirit.
2. JESUS CHRIST SET ASIDE HIS GLORY TO SAVE US Read Matthew 1:18-25 What did the angel say about the important work of the special child in Mary's womb? (1:21) He would save the people from their sins.
2. JESUS CHRIST SET ASIDE HIS GLORY TO SAVE US Read Matthew 1:18-25 "All this took place to fulfill [Scriptures]," Matthew comments. How do these words indicate that Jesus was willing to become our Savior? (1:23) What was happening corresponded exactly with the words of the prophets, spoken centuries earlier. By becoming a human being, Jesus showed his desire to accomplish our salvation according to his heavenly Father’s plan, recorded in the Bible.
2. JESUS CHRIST SET ASIDE HIS GLORY TO SAVE US His Word in My Life A friend comes to you and asks to talk to you. She pours out a sad account of a serious sin that has been burdening her conscience. She doesn't believe God is willing to have anything to do with her. How might you point to Jesus' willingness to become a human being as proof that God is willing to forgive her?
2. JESUS CHRIST SET ASIDE HIS GLORY TO SAVE US His Word in My Life We can remind each other that Jesus’ desire is that all people be saved. He willingly came into a sinful world that had displayed no quality that was worthy of his love. Yet he loved us with an everlasting love. He has forgiven us.
2. JESUS CHRIST SET ASIDE HIS GLORY TO SAVE US Words can't adequately express what heaven is like, but the book of Revelation tries! It offers pictures of God's throne room and our eternal home. The more we stand in awe of heaven, the more we appreciate the love Jesus showed as he stepped down to become man to save us.
3. JESUS CHRIST, TRUE GOD AND TRUE MAN, IS MY SAVIOR No one likes to be left out. Do you still wince at the memory of being left off a team or a party invitation list? What would it be like to be left out of God's plan of salvation? Thank God, we never have to wince at that! Read Isaiah's prophecy of Jesus' birth.
3. JESUS CHRIST, TRUE GOD AND TRUE MAN, IS MY SAVIOR Read Isaiah 9:2-7 Who are the people walking in darkness who have seen a great light? (9:2) (See John 12:46.) This prophecy looks ahead to the time when those blinded by the darkness of sin would receive sight (faith) through the light of the gospel. “I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness.” (John 12:46)
3. JESUS CHRIST, TRUE GOD AND TRUE MAN, IS MY SAVIOR Read Isaiah 9:2-7 When Isaiah spoke of warriors' boots and bloody garments destined for burning, he is describing the sickening aftermath of a war. Name the blessings in this picture. How do we receive these blessings? (9:5) By nature, we are born enemies of God and at war with him. Isaiah’s picture describes spiritual peace between man and God, which would be accomplished when Jesus reconciled the world to himself.
3. JESUS CHRIST, TRUE GOD AND TRUE MAN, IS MY SAVIOR Read Isaiah 9:2-7 Which words foretell that the one who brings peace will be both God and man? (9:6) Verse 6 says that a child—a son—will be born who will be the Mighty God and the Prince of Peace.
3. JESUS CHRIST, TRUE GOD AND TRUE MAN, IS MY SAVIOR Read Isaiah 9:2-7 How do these verses makes you more confident of your salvation? He speaks of enlarging the nation beyond the borders of Israel. Jews and Gentiles alike walk in the world of darkness. (verses 2-3) Verse 7 tells us that there will be no end to the increase of his government and peace. He will rule over the kingdom of believers forever!
3. JESUS CHRIST, TRUE GOD AND TRUE MAN, IS MY SAVIOR His Word in My Life Various obstacles keep us from becoming what we might want to be. What obstacle keeps you from becoming a world renowned singer? an NBA star? What keeps us from being able to establish fellowship with God by ourselves? Most of us will never become world famous singers or NBA stars. Yet, we can have the peace of knowing with absolute certainty that we are children of God and that we have been restored to fellowship with him. How does each of these passages assure you of peace with God? John 1:29; John 3:16; 1 John 1:7; 1 John 2:2; Romans 8:1; Isaiah 1:18
3. JESUS CHRIST, TRUE GOD AND TRUE MAN, IS MY SAVIOR His Word in My Life People in the entertainment industry say a lot depends on being in the right place at the right time so you can be discovered. Many of us, however, could never become famous singers, even if we were in the right place at the right time. We have the wrong voice. Many of us lack the height, coordination, speed, and skill that is needed to become an NBA star. We simply don’t have what it takes.
3. JESUS CHRIST, TRUE GOD AND TRUE MAN, IS MY SAVIOR His Word in My Life We aren’t able to establish fellowship with God because spiritually we don’t have what it takes. God demands perfection. Not one of us can provide that. Instead, our lives are filled with sin. Because of that, we deserve eternal death and punishment. Yet there is hope—absolute hope— because our relationship with God doesn’t rest on our having what it takes, but in the fact that Jesus had what it takes.
3. JESUS CHRIST, TRUE GOD AND TRUE MAN, IS MY SAVIOR His Word in My Life When John the Baptist saw Jesus walking toward him, he declared that Jesus was God’s sacrificial lamb who would take away the sin of the whole world (John 1:29). Thankfully Jesus didn’t just pick and choose for whom he would die. He died for the whole world. The familiar gospel in a nutshell, John 3:16, says the same thing when it tells us that God loved the “world” that “whoever” believes will have eternal life.
3. JESUS CHRIST, TRUE GOD AND TRUE MAN, IS MY SAVIOR His Word in My Life John tells us the wonderful truth that the blood of Jesus purifies us from every sin (1 John 1:7) and that he is the atoning sacrifice for the sins of the whole world (1 John 2:2). As a result, there is no condemnation for those who look to Jesus in faith (Romans 8:1), no matter how frightful their sins (Isaiah 1:18).
3. JESUS CHRIST, TRUE GOD AND TRUE MAN, IS MY SAVIOR Many people followed Jesus temporarily because of his miracles. But when they realized that doing miracles wasn't his main purpose for coming into the world, they began to desert him. Much more serious than our physical hunger or sickness is the condemnation of sin. Much more important to us is the fact that Jesus—true God and true man—is our Savior.
SUMMARY Sin touches every part of our lives. What comfort do you find in the fact that the Son of God became the Son of Man and now lives and rules eternally? When Jesus died on the cross, he died for people of all time. If there had been any doubt that Jesus was the eternal Lord, people could not have put their faith in him. So Jesus repeatedly showed himself to be true God and said so himself.
SUMMARY How is your celebration of Christmas—the incarnation of Christ—different from how an unbeliever celebrates it? In some cases the methods of celebration may be virtually the same, but the meaning and motivation are very different. Explain. Because we recognize who Christ is and what he did for us, we will want to keep our celebration focused on him.