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11

Jesus Manifested in the Flesh

Jesus is born, fulfilling the prophecies that a savior would come and save the people from their sins. Jesus, who is without sin, sacrifices Himself in death that He may give eternal life to all who believe. His disciples continued His work.

The angel Gabriel visits Zechariah and then Mary – The prophets in the old testament often spoke of the coming messiah that would save God’s people from their sin and their separation from Him that began in Adam. They also prophesied a forerunner that would prepare the way of the Lord. When the time was fulfilled to bring these prophecies to pass, God sent Gabriel, the angel of God that stands in the presence of the Lord, to deliver these messages.

 

  ~ He first visited Zechariah, who was a priest in the temple of God. Even though his wife Elizabeth’s womb was dead, Gabriel declared that they would bear a child that would go before the face of the Lord to prepare His ways and to give knowledge of salvation unto His people by the remission of their sins. Zechariah was commanded to call this child’s name John.

 

  ~ After that, He visited Mary to announce that, though she was a virgin, the Holy Ghost would overshadow her, and she would conceive and bear a son and call His name Jesus, the Son of God, the Redeemer of Israel. (Jesus would finally be the answer to Adam’s sinful nature and rebellion against God.)

 

The birth of John the Baptist – John was born first. His parents were Zechariah and Elizabeth. He was a prophet anointed by God to prepare the way of the Lord. It was him who prepared the people to receive Jesus. 

 

Matthew 3:3 This is he that was spoken of by the prophet Isaiah, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare the way of the Lord, make His paths straight.

 

John went about preaching the gospel of repentance by baptism. He declared that his baptism was of water but that One was coming after him (Jesus) that would baptize them with the Holy Ghost and fire. (After Jesus began His ministry, John was captured and beheaded by Herod, a Roman king).

 

The Birth of Jesus – Conceived of the Holy Ghost, Jesus was born of a virgin in the town of Bethlehem, fulfilling the prophecy of Isaiah.

 

Isaiah 7:14 The Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold a virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel. 

 

Isaiah 9:6 Unto us a child is born, and unto us, a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful Counsellor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.

 

Jesus is Emmanuel, which being interpreted means God with us!

 

The Old Testament is filled with prophecies of the coming messiah that would dissolve the separation between God and man. Prophecies also said that He would restore Israel as a people of God and join in the heathen nations of the Gentiles. Jesus is the manifestation of a sinless God who provides a holy sacrifice for the sins of the world.

 

Jesus was manifested, fulfilling the words of the prophets that a savior would come and save people from their sins. Jesus is the Son of God, the fullness of God manifested in the flesh to mediate the separation between God and man. He is the fulfillment of God’s thoughts and God’s ways. 

 

He who is without sin sacrificed Himself in death so that He may be the resurrection and life for all those who will believe. He is the door of heaven, the only way to the Father. By believing in Him, we have access to eternal life and live in heaven for eternity. After His resurrection, His disciples (Apostles) continued His work as the sons of God and saviors of the world.

 

Jesus never proclaimed that He was of flesh and blood. His Father was God, who is a Spirit, making Him a Son who was born of the Spirit. His testimony is of heaven and not earth. His kingdom is eternal, and not of the flesh. His visitation among men is to break the curse of sin and death that has plagued the nature of man since the world began. 

 

The Bible says that flesh and blood will not inherit the kingdom of God, so Jesus is the answer to the salvation of the first Adam, who lives in the flesh. That’s why Jesus is the last Adam, a quickening Spirit, who is the Lord from heaven. He is the only one who can break the chains of flesh and blood.

 

Jesus was manifested to restore you to your place with God. He will show you who you are when your salvation is finished. When you look at Him, it is revealed to you who you are in Him. He is your future self without sin and death.

 

Jesus began His ministry by being baptized by John – As John preached and baptized all people in preparation for the coming Christ, Jesus was sent to John to be baptized in water. Jesus said that this was needful to fulfill all righteousness. As Jesus came up out of the water, the heavens were opened, and the Spirit of God descended from heaven as a dove and sat upon Him. A voice came out of heaven saying, “This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased.”

 

Jesus was tempted in the wilderness – Immediately after Jesus was baptized, the Spirit led Him into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil. After not eating for forty days, the devil came to Jesus to tempt Him. His temptations immediately challenged the Word of God that Jesus received from heaven when He was baptized, that said, He is the Son of God, in whom God is well pleased. 

 

Jesus was faithful to the Word He received from His Father and answered the devil by establishing that the devil serves God, not the other way around. The devil departed from Jesus, defeated, and the angel's ministered to the Lord.

 

This temptation served as the only way for Jesus to start His ministry on the earth. The devil had no power over Him, and Jesus was free to do all that God commanded Him without any interruption.

 

Jesus calls His Twelve disciples – As Jesus went forth to begin His ministry, He immediately chose twelve disciples to follow Him. They continued with Him in the truth of the gospel as long as He was on the earth. Jesus spent over three years teaching them and preparing them to lay down their lives for the sake of the Gospel of Christ. All but one disciple, Judas, followed Jesus to His death.

 

The transformation of these disciples became apparent to all. It was said that these were unlearned and ignorant men, but it was clear to all that they had been with Jesus because of the power and demonstration of the Spirit that they manifested.

 

The Twelve Disciples

 

  1. Simon, who is called Peter

  2. Andrew (brother of Simon Peter)

  3. James the son of Zebedee

  4. John (brother of James)

  5. Philip

  6. Bartholomew

  7. Thomas

  8. Matthew, the publican

  9. James, the son of Alphaeus

  10. Lebbaeus, whose surname was Thaddaeus

  11. Simon the Canaanite

  12. Judas Iscariot, who betrayed Jesus

 

Jesus begins His ministry – Jesus was the manifestation of God. He was the kingdom of heaven made known to man. He was sent to seek and save those that were lost. As He preached, He declared that He was born to bear witness to the truth and that He was sent to destroy the works of the devil. He served His Father by doing only what He had seen and heard of Him, declaring truth, and restoring the kingdom of God by doing the works of God.

 

Acts 10:38 God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him. 

 

Jesus is His name, and there is no other name under heaven given among men whereby we must be saved.

 

During the life of Jesus, He demonstrated the power of God by healing the sick, casting out devils, raising the dead, opening blind eyes, and restoring salvation and confidence in God to the hearts of the people.

His teachings were considered astonishing by anyone that heard Him speak. He used many parables and illustrations to show the kingdom of heaven among men. He was not only a true prophet of God, but He was the fullness of God in bodily form, and He always represented God in that image.

While God sent Jesus to the world, many religious leaders hated him and often devised plans to kill Him. He was seen as an opposition to men who had sat in high seats ruling over men and women with religious rules of structure and commandments to fit their agenda. They perverted the laws of God to encourage condemnation and fear in people so that they could be seen as righteous leaders. Jesus said that these men were wicked and even called them serpents to reveal that they were the children of the devil. 

 

When the people began to follow Jesus in large groups, the leaders of the religious sects decided it was time to take action before they lost their seats at the table.

 

Jesus Betrayed – Before Jesus could fulfill His purpose; the prophecy had to come to pass that His familiar friend would raise up his heel against Him and betray Him. This betrayal was necessary so that Jesus could be crucified in the flesh. This was the betrayal that gave the Pharisee Jews, the religious leaders, the opportunity to accuse Jesus so they could kill Him falsely. 

 

His disciple, Judas, was the one that betrayed Him to the Pharisees in return for thirty pieces of silver. Judas’ betrayal turned Jesus over to them to be killed. Judas was called the son of perdition and betrayer of the Lord, who hung himself because he could not find repentance.

 

While this betrayal was an evil act by one of His chosen, it was not a surprise to Jesus. It was prophesied by God so that Jesus could die for the salvation of the world. Without the death of Jesus, there would not be the putting off of flesh and blood, and the hope for a new body wouldn’t exist.

 

The death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus – for God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. John 3:16

 

Jesus said it was for this purpose that He was sent into the world. In simplicity, Jesus was sent to be the death and the resurrection of the Son of God. Without His death and the shedding of His blood, there would be no remission of sins. He is the one true mediator between God and man.

 

While man has been separated from God by sin and death, flesh and blood, Jesus took on the nature of flesh and put it to death by crucifying it on a cross. Jesus was then buried in that flesh in the earth. In the resurrection, the Spirit changed His earthly corruptible body into a new body to forever conquer the power of death and its stronghold over the sons of God.

 

Because of Christ’s sacrifice, we no longer have to serve sin and death. The old man is crucified with Christ so that we can now walk in newness of life. That means we can now walk in a new spiritual body not bound by the weakness of the flesh. We no longer have to be born of either a Jew or Gentile, male or female in the flesh, but we can be born again by the work of the Spirit that Jesus did for the whole world.

 

Jesus sends His disciples into the world – after Jesus resurrected and ascended to the Father, He began to appear to His disciples. He is now manifesting a resurrected body, a Spirit body. Jesus commanded His disciples to go into all the world and preach the gospel to all nations. He said to teach them to be baptized in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. They went forth preaching in the name of Jesus.

 

With this commandment, the gospel would be preached to the whole world through the Apostles of Christ. They would turn the world upside down for the sake of Christ, preaching and teaching the name of Jesus with power and demonstration to all men and women.

 

Jesus had a oneness plan - while there is a lot that Jesus accomplished, it cannot be overstated that Jesus is all about the oneness of God. Oneness of His kingdom, His body, His Spirit, and His people. This oneness has always been God’s will, and Jesus has made the way for this to happen. He desires that no one gets left out, no matter who you are or where you came from; His blood applies to all.

 

With this in mind, you generally have two groups of people, Israel, who are called Jews, known as God's chosen people. (This is who the Bible focuses on.) And then you have the Gentile nations, who are anyone other than God’s people because they serve other gods. (These nations are the many different groups and cultures of people in the Bible.) But these are a separation of flesh to teach spiritual laws. What if God, through Jesus Christ, could break down the barrier between the two and unite all souls as one body in Jesus Christ? 

 

Uniting people is what Jesus does. He made a way so that by faith and a work of the Spirit, all souls could serve God as one people, not separated by the flesh through race, or language, or worship. All people can serve God with one language and one Spirit no matter who your earthly family is or what culture you were raised in.

 

Notice: When Jesus began to teach His gospel, He used many parables to show His will. If you look closely, you will see that God has a purpose to save all the Gentile nations, even though it will anger those who say they are the only ones called God’s people. This grand plan of God is accomplished by the few who are willing to lay their lives down to fulfill God’s will on the earth. 

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