Jesus the Prophet

“Who do people say the Son of Man is?”
They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” (Matthew 16:13,14)

Jesus did what a prophet did.  He spoke with the authority of God about areas where God’s people needed to repent and about future events in light of either their repentance or lack thereof.  Jesus filled the role of a prophet, a spokesman for God empowered by the Holy Spirit to speak the words of God.

Jesus’ main message is summed up in the early chapters of the Gospels:  “Repent, for the kingdom of God is at hand!” (Matthew 4:17; Mark 1:15)  This was a message in very many ways similar to the message of the Old Testament prophets.  They too spoke of the kingdom coming, but they typically spoke of it in terms of the Day of the Lord, the day in which God would begin to judge the world in righteousness and establish His rule over the earth.  What was different about Jesus was that he was saying, “The Day of the Lord is here; the kingdom is here in the person of the king.”

Many of Jesus’ prophecies were about the need of the nation to repent.  He tells parables about the vineyard and the vineyard workers refusing to give the owner of the vineyard his due and the judgment the owner imposes (Matthew 21).  He speaks most directly about the need for repentance to the Pharisees in Matthew 23.  His cleansing of the temple (twice, John 2 the first time and Matthew 21, Mark 11 and Luke 19 the second time) was an indictment of the religious establishment and their failure to maintain justice even in the temple courts.

Jesus, of course, predicted the coming cataclysmic events of his second coming in Matthew 24 and 25, Mark 13 and Luke 21.  He also had knowledge about people and things no one could have unless the Spirit of God revealed it to him (for example, Mark 2:6-8; John 4:15-19).

Jesus was much more than a prophet, but that he was a prophet is without dispute.  Even Islam recognizes that he is a prophet from God.  A prophet must be obeyed.  Jesus is the prophet most worthy of being obeyed and loved.


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