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WHY WE BELIEVE IN JESUS CHRIST 1 Peter 3:15 and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:” The King James Version, (Cambridge: Cambridge) 1769.
3 An Introduction …. The greatest story ever told is that of Jesus Christ... The Son of God becoming flesh, dwelling among men – John 1:1, 3:16; 1:14. His life, His miracles, His teachings, His death, His resurrection and ascension to heaven --- Acts 2:22-24, 36 How He shed His blood to provide atonement for the sins of the world! --- Heb. 10:5-10 It is a story that calls for faith... For those willing to believe, eternal life is possible - John 3:16 For those choosing not to believe, there is condemnation - John 3:18 Why do we believe in Jesus Christ? For two reasons mainly, both of which were stressed in the preaching of the apostles of Christ. The first being...
4 FULFILLED PROPHECY EXPLANATION... The apostles appealed to Messianic prophecies to produce faith in Jesus. Peter in his second sermon at Jerusalem - Acts 3:18 Paul in Thessalonica, as was his custom - Acts 17:1-3 Some examples of Messianic prophecies: The conflict between the serpent and the seed of woman - Gen 3:15 The blessing upon all nations through the seed of Abraham - Gen 12:3; 22:18
5 FULFILLED PROPHECY The prophet to come who would be like Moses - Deut 18:15,17-19 Who would be born of a virgin - Isa 7:14 The forerunner who would prepare the way of the Lord - Isa 40:3 The suffering Servant who would bear our iniquities - Isa 53:4-12 His resurrection from the dead - Psa 16:8-11 His ascension into heaven - Dan 7:13-14
6 FULFILLED PROPHECY SIGNIFICANCE... H.W. Everest has suggested the following criteria for true prophecy: The event must be beyond the power of man to forsee. It must be demonstrated that the prediction was made before the event. The prediction must be applicable to the event. The language of the prediction must be unambiguous and unmistakable. The prediction must have a clear and demonstrable fulfillment – The Divine Demonstration – 1972 p. 260 They help to identify the One who is truly the Messiah, God’s ‚Anointed One. The Old Testament has approximately 330 prophecies concerning the Messiah Jesus of Nazareth fulfilled every one!
7 FULFILLED PROPHECY The mathematical probability of it being a coincidence is astounding! The probability of any man who has lived fulfilling just eight prophecies has been calculated as 1 in 1x10 17 (100,000,000,000,000,000)! - Peter Stoner, Science Speaks, Chicago IL, Moody Press 1963, p. 101-102 To illustrate how large the number 10 17 is, Stoner gave this illustration : Suppose that we take 10 17 silver dollars and lay them on the face of Texas. They will cover all of the state two feet deep. Now mark one of these silver dollars and stir the whole mass thoroughly, all over the state. Blindfold a man and tell him that he can travel as far as he wishes, but he must pick up one silver dollar and say that this is the right one. What chance would he have of getting the right one? Just the same chance that the prophets would have had of writing these eight prophecies and having them all come true in any one man, from their day to the present time, providing they wrote them in their own wisdom. - ibid. The probability of fulfilling just 48 prophecies is one in 10 157 ! - ibid. Counting at the rate of 250 units per minute......it would take 19 million x 19 million x 19 millions years to count to one in 10 157 ! [Jesus fulfilled not 8, not 48, but over 300 prophecies! It is easy to see why the apostles appealed to Messianic prophecies to prove that Jesus was the Christ. But they also appealed to their own...]
8 FULFILLED PROPHECYProphecyScriptureFulfillment Of the tribe of Judah Gen 49:10 Lk 3:23-38 Of the Royal line of David Jer 23:5 Matt 1:1 Born of a Virgin Isa 7:14 Matt 1:18-23 Born in Bethlehem Micah 5:2 Matt 2:1-6 A forerunner shall prepare the way Mal 3:1; 4:5 Matt 3:1-2; 11:7- 14
9 FULFILLED PROPHECYProphecyScriptureFulfillment He shall enter Jerusalem riding on an ass. Zech 9:9 Matt 21:6-7 He shall be betrayed by a disciple Psa 41:9 John 13:18 Betrayal price stated Zech 11:12 Matt 26:14-15 Betrayal price to be returned Zech 11:13 Matt 27:3-7 His disciples shall forsake him Zech 13:7 Matt 26:31,56
10 FULFILLED PROPHECYProphecyScriptureFulfillment False witnesses shall accuse Him Psa 35:11; 27:12 Matt 26:59-61 He shall suffer abuse Isa 50:6 Matt 26:67 He shall suffer in silence Isa 53:7 Matt 27:12-14 He shall be stripped Isa 53:5 Matt 27:28-29 Hands and feet pierced Psa 22:16 Lk 23:33; John 20:24-28
11 FULFILLED PROPHECYProphecyScriptureFulfillment Numbered with Criminals Isa 53:12 Mk 15:27 To divide his garments Psa 22:18 John 19:23-24 Gall and vinegar to be offered Psa 69:21 John 19:28-29; Matt 27:34 No bones to be broken Psa 34:20 John 19:33-36 He shall be pierced Zech 12:10 John 19:33-37
12 FULFILLED PROPHECYProphecyScriptureFulfillment The crowds shall rebuke him Psa 22:6-8 Matt 27:39-44 Darkness in daytime to signal crucifixion Amos 8:9 Matt 27:45 To be buried with the rich Isa 53:9 Matt 27:57-60 To arise from the dead Psa 16:10 Matt 28:6; Acts 2:22-32; 13:32-37 To ascend Psa 68:18 Lk 24:51; Acts 1:9; Eph 4:8-10
13 FULFILLED PROPHECY “One real case of fulfilled prophecy would establish a supernatural act. But if our interpretation of the prophetic passage be correct, there are great numbers of them …. Therefore, radical doubt must be certain it has silenced the testimony of all prophecies, whereas the Christian asserts that rather than resting the case on one prophecy, we have dozens at our beck and call.” Bernard Ramm – Protestant Christian Evidence, Chicargo IL – Moody Press, 1976 p. 86
14 APOSTOLIC TESTIMONY EXPLANATION... The apostles claimed to be eyewitnesses of the life, death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus. As professed by Peter - Acts 10:39-42; 2 Peter 1:16-18 As professed by John - 1 John 1:1-3 The apostles by their testimony force us to make a decision. Were they truly eyewitnesses, or false witnesses? - 1 Corinthians 15:14-15 Was their testimony based on truth, or cunningly devised fables? - 2 Peter 1:16-18 We cannot say they were sincerely deceived or mistaken.
15 APOSTOLIC TESTIMONY Especially in reference to the resurrection of Jesus They claim they ate and drank with Him afterwards - Acts 10:39-41 They claim they saw and touched Him - 1 John 1:1-3 b. They leave no room for saying they were mistaken or deceived 1) Some skeptics have tried to offer this as an alternative 2) That perhaps in their grief and loss over the crucifixion they hallucinated or saw grief-inspired visions. 3) But hallucinations and visions are highly individualistic experiences 4) The resurrection appearances of Jesus were often witnessed by many at the same time (over 500 on one occasion) - cf. 1 Corinthians 15:4-8
16 APOSTOLIC TESTIMONY SIGNIFICANCE... If the apostolic testimony is false The New Testament is a carefully orchestrated lie! The apostles suffered extreme hardship for what they knew was a lie! - cf. 1 Corinthians 4:9-13 Those martyred (all but one) knew they were dying for a lie! They went against everything Jesus and they themselves taught! - cf. 1 Peter 2:1 The greatest book ever written (as per Charles Dickens) with its high standards and lofty goals was composed by liars, frauds and deceivers!
17 APOSTOLIC TESTIMONY But if the apostolic testimony is true Then Jesus is everything they taught He claimed to be! He is the Son of God - Romans 1:4 “And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead:” He truly has all authority in heaven and earth - Matthew 28:18; Acts 2:36 “And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.” “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.” Then everything they testified concerning what He taught is true!
18 APOSTOLIC TESTIMONY He was from the Father above, and spoke the words of the Father - John 8:28-29 No one can come to the Father but through Him - John 14:6 His blood was shed for the remission of sins - Matthew 26:28 He came to offer abundant life - John 10:10 He went to prepare a place for us - John 14:2 He shall come again - John 14:3 There will be a resurrection of the dead and ensuing judgment - John 5:28-29; 12:48
19 Conclusion … We have good reason to believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God... The testimony of Scripture, in the fulfillment of Messianic prophecies. The testimony of eyewitnesses, in the credible account of the apostles. For those willing to obey Jesus, there is yet another reason to believe...
20 Conclusion … In keeping His word, they will come to know He has spoken from God - cf. John 7:16-17 “He shall have evidence, in the very attempt to do the will of God, of the truth of the doctrine.” --- Barnes “He who in his heart says, ‛Thy will be done, give me light and I will walk in it,’ will find that Christ is just the teacher demanded by his soul, and that the gospel meets his soul’s want. Jesus will so meet the wants of his soul that he will be satisfied and will know the doctrine, that it comes from him who made the soul.” --- B. W. Johnson Yes, we believe in Jesus Christ, not only because of the Messianic prophecies He fulfilled and the eyewitness testimony of His apostles, but because we have tried Him and not found Him wanting.
21 Call To Speak To US Live Now!!! Call And ---Call And --- Ask For A Copy Of This Presentation.Ask For A Copy Of This Presentation. BY EMAIL, BY FLOPPY DISK or IN PRINT.BY EMAIL, BY FLOPPY DISK or IN PRINT. Ask To Be Added To The Beacon’s Mailing.Ask To Be Added To The Beacon’s Mailing. Ask For A Free Bible Correspondence Course.Ask For A Free Bible Correspondence Course. Call With A ---Call With A --- Biblical Question Or Comment.Biblical Question Or Comment. Receive a Biblical Answer – “Book, Chapter and Verse”.Receive a Biblical Answer – “Book, Chapter and Verse”. Call (828) 327-9459 or - WHKY