Christian Living

Who is Jesus?

Learn about Jesus through the Testimony of Others in the Bible

Who is Jesus? C. S. Lewis attempted to answer this question when he popularized a trilemma (a dilemma with 50 percent more content) about Jesus. He argued that Jesus is either a liar, a lunatic, or the Lord. If you’ve read many of my posts, you know that I pick the third option.

Jesus is Lord. Jesus is my Lord.

Of course others deride Jesus, calling him a charlatan or a crazy man. And other people have other characterizations of Jesus too. But let’s set all these perspectives aside and look at what the Bible provides as an answer to the question, “Who is Jesus?”

We’ll start and end with what father God says about his only Son, but we’ll also consider many other biblical voices as well. This list isn’t extensive, but it is what I could quickly come up with.

Interestingly, I found the most input from my outspoken namesake, the disciple Peter. (These are all taken from the NIV.)

Who Is Jesus?

  • “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased” -God, Luke 3:22
  • “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, that one of the prophets of long ago has come back to life.” -Peter, Luke 9:19
  • “the Son of God” -religious leaders (incredulously), Luke 22:70
  • “the King of the Jews” -Pilate (questioningly), Luke 23:3
  • “a righteous man” -the Centurion (confidently), Luke 23:47
  • “God’s Messiah,” -Peter, Luke 9:20
  • A man who has “done nothing wrong” –the criminal on the cross, Luke 23:41
  • “the Messiah, the Son of the living God” -Peter, Matthew 16:16
  • Jesus is “a prophet, powerful in word and deed before God and all the people,” -the pair on the road to Emmaus, Luke 24:19
  • “My Lord and my God!” -Thomas, John 20:28
  • “Rabboni!” (which means Teacher) -Mary Magdalene, John 20:16
  • “Rabbi” -Peter, Mark 11:21, along with many others, including Judas who eventually betrays him
  • “the Son of God; you are the king of Israel” -Nathanael, John 1:47
  • “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased. Listen to him!” -God, Matthew 17:5
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So Then, Who is Jesus?

Putting these together gives us a composite understanding of who Jesus is and how we can relate to him. Most importantly, we can focus on God’s own testimony: Jesus is the Son of God and we should listen to him.

May we do exactly that.

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.

Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

6 replies on “Who is Jesus?”

Peter, You may have heard Christian teachers say “You’re off the Mark!” Why, because to see and know Jesus up close and personal, Christians need to keep Mark 15:21 foremost in their minds.

In this verse, it is Simon who carries the Cross of Jesus. This Simon appears to have some black history or at least some connection with the community of Cyrene in Africa. In other texts Simon is called the Rock or Cephas and identified as Satan a man thinking very much like a worldly man or a man full of the philosophy of the Cyrenes and a stumbling block to the Jesus who needs Simon’s backing.

Psalm 118:22 identifies Jesus as the Rock, the Stone that the chief builders rejected. Throughout the Gospel Narratives, there is a Twin who demands proof of Jesus’ identity and Resurrection.

In John’s Gospel Chapter 3, a Rabboni given the name of Victory of the People by his followers spends the night with a Rabbi, John’s Gospel account identifies as Jesus who challenges the Rabboni who is the chief Teacher and Counsel Member of the Jews. This Rabboni comes back into the story in Chapter 7 when the temple guards go to the chief priests and the Pharisees after a divisive quarrel queries the identity of Jesus. They are particularly concerned in John 7:47 because NO PHARISEE has admitted to believing in Jesus.

You will recall in Luke’s Gospel Luke 7:47 The prophet believed by Luke to be Jesus is anointed by a Woman that centuries of Tradition say had Red or rufus coloured hair. The name given to the Pharisee who doubts Jesus’ identity in Luke’s Account is Simon.

The Rabboni of John’s account and viewed by his followers as the One bringing victory to the people of Israel, stands up for the One the rabble has chosen as their Rabbi whom they see as the Messiah…even though Simon the Pharisee has not publicly acknowledged that belief. The Rabboni suggests the temple guards and chief priests bring in this Rabbi that he has spent the night with for questioning. Then each of the questioners and doubters go home and Jesus goes to the Mount of Olives. Early in the morning the Rabboni comes again into the Temple and all the people come to him and he sits down and begins to teach them. Then the scribes and the Pharisees bring in a woman who has been caught in the act of adultery; and making her stand before all of them, they say to him. “Teacher, this woman was caught in the very act of committing adultery.”

Jesus the Rabboni and Jesus the Red Haired one are the spiritual children of Simon the Pharisee. A Pharisee is the Father of the Oral Tradition and the Law. Mark 15:21 tells the faith community that Simon is the Father who carries the Cross and his children are Alexander and Rufus. Alexander in Greek tradition brings the Victory to the People. He is believed to be a Nicodemus and a man like John the Baptist whose head deserves to be on brass plates as all Kings of Kings are.

In summary. Jesus is not one person. Jesus is the three persons identified in Mark 15:21. The Scandal of the Woman Caught in Adultery brings into question who Jesus is. At the conclusion of the trial in John 8:11, Jesus says…go your way and from now on do not sin again” Then in Verse 12, [She] Jesus again speaks to them, saying, I am the Light of the World.

People speaking Greek are better able to catch the subtle nuance presented in Verse 12. In Greek mythology, Helen of Troy was the Spartan Married Woman abducted and seduced by Paris also known as Alexander. Helen was believed to be the daughter of the Greek God, Zeus. In Greek the name Helen means bright torch, or light. In Roman Catholic Tradition, the Magdalene was thought to be the Woman with the Red-Hair and or cloaked in Scarlet. In English, if one says Mega Helena and one knows the story of Helen of Troy, it is not hard to see the Mega Helen…as the Great Light, the Woman Caught in Adultery who illuminates the Gospel stories.

For many, it would be blasphemous to think a Woman Caught in Adultery, could come out and say she is Jesus the Holy Spirit, the Light of the World. And of course it was and still is for many people.

The Cross…is a scandalous story. People may ask. “How can such a scandalous story that many people would rather distance themselves from and bury, fulfill ancient prophecy and establish God’s kingdom of peace and forgiveness, reconciling and uniting the divided household and family of God to God’s eternal Triune self?

You say Peter …Jesus is Lord. And I agree. Jesus is Lord and when he turns toward Jesus the Light and forgives her and Jesus the Rabboni and his beloved Lady who also forgives and in turn each forgives the other for their inhospitality or lack of faith or offensive thoughts or deeds…Humanity, God’s only begotten Son is reborn in the very image and eternal likeness of God who is LOVE. The Scandalous story is an eternal one of mythic proportions because it is designed to take away the sting of death for those who wait upon the Lord. Those who believe will see the Light and they will have the light of life, hallow the Lord’s name, receive forgiveness of Sin and receive Eternal Life, the Victory of the People.

What do you think? Please leave a comment!

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