FIRST COMING

Who Killed Jesus?

Picture this: A Jewish family spending quality time decorating a Christmas tree. Does this sound odd to you? When I was 17, I was invited to a Christmas tree decorating party at the home of a Jewish acquaintance. Confusion would best describe my initial reaction…

Zvi Dec/Jan 1998/1999

This year, as every year, the people of Israel are facing with fear and misunderstanding the time when Christians celebrate the birth of our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. Some acquaintances approached me the other day and said…

The Servant’s Deity

Like a flickering candle caught in a gale, so is mankind’s attempt to fathom the depths of God’s ways. The finite mind of man is unable to grasp the ways of an infinitely more intelligent God. Yea, without His help, it is an impossible task destined for…

The Servant’s Suffering

In 1 Corinthians 15:1–4, the Apostle Paul confidently asserts that “the gospel” he taught was that “Christ [the Messiah] died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to…

The Servant’s Reign

The Servant of the Lord is a major theme in the Book of Isaiah. An understanding of this term is germane in grasping the meaning of God’s redemptive program for Israel. The book identifies men such as Isaiah himself, Eliakim, and David…

The Kenosis of Jesus Christ

In Philippians 2:7, the Apostle Paul stated that Jesus Christ “made himself of no reputation.” The verb translated “made of no reputation” is ekenosen. Theologians have used the major part of that verb to form the term kenosis. As a result…

Prophet, Priest, And King

If you ask someone to name the founder of Christianity, he or she will probably reply, “Jesus Christ.” Most people think that Jesus was His first name and Christ was His last name. The word Christ, however, is not a name—it is a title. It means Messiah. Therefore…

The Hypostatic Union of Jesus Christ

The English word hypostasis is derived from a Greek word meaning “essence, actual being, reality” (William F. Arndt and F. Wilbur Gingrich, A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament, p. 854). Thus, it refers to the real essence of a person or thing. As applied to Christ…

Glimpse of Glory 2 Peter 1:12–21

Sixty seconds is all it takes. When sponsors of a television program want to entice viewers to tune in next week, a one-minute preview of the most exciting scenes is all it takes. If you like what you see in that brief encounter, you will surely love the complete version…

The Incarnation of Jesus Christ Conclusion

Peter also declared that Jesus was “crucified and slain” (v. 23). The word translated crucified means “fix,” “fasten to,” or “nail to” (William F. Arndt and F. Wilbur Gingrich, A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament, p. 725). Peter used it to describe…

The Incarnation of Jesus Christ Part One

Historically, some people and groups have denied that Christ came in human flesh. For example, some said that the Christ came temporarily upon an already existing man, Jesus of Nazareth. He came long enough to impart a secret body of knowledge…

Names and Titles Of Jesus Christ

All of the articles thus far in this series have examined the first major area of doctrine—Bibliology (the study of the Bible). This article begins an examination of another significant area—Christology (the study of Christ).

The Pharisees: “They Weren’t All That Bad!”

Intense is the only way to describe an informal discussion that took place among several young students of the Bible. The topic being discussed? The Pharisees during the time of Jesus…

Jesus Before Caiaphas

When Jesus stood before Caiaphas, the high priest, at His so-called trial, it marked the climax of a battle between Him and the corrupt Jewish Temple leadership that had been escalating since Jesus began His ministry.

The Mocking of the Messiah

The Roman general Pompey laid siege to Jerusalem in 63 B.C. Having made Syria a Roman province the preceding year it was now Judea’s turn to be conquered. Twelve thousand Jews died in the ensuing melee.

Behold the Man!

“What is truth?” The words rang out like the vibration of an endless sound wave echoing through the universe. Can one know the truth? Is truth the elusive goal of man’s fertile imagination?

No Greater Love

“For he was cut off out of the land of the living; for the transgression of my people was he stricken” (Isa. 53:8).

Three Appearings of the Messiah

The recently divulged discovery of life on Mars captivated the attention of much of the world. With the first announcement, there was a rush of anticipation fueled by visions of little green men careening…

Mary and Joseph

Christmas has never been a time of rejoicing for Jewish people. The hubbub and festivities that effervesce around the holiday seem to many Jews more like a big ball of excitement that rolls…

The Dedication of a King

In every parent’s life there are those timeless moments when a newborn child nestles gently into his or her arms. With large, innocent eyes, the trusting infant looks up at its reassuring protector.

The Wise Men

There are many misconceptions about the magi who visited Jesus. The beloved Christmas carol begins, “We three kings of Orient are,” but already it has made at least three errors.

Herod the Great?

History has bestowed on him the descriptive title, “the Great.” The primary Jewish chronicler of his period, Josephus, was the first to use the actual phrase “Herod the Great” in his Antiquities of the Jews.

Jesus and the Role of Women

It has become quite fashionable among some feminist writers and people sympathetic to the women’s liberation movement to castigate biblical writers for their “sexism.” Often biblical authors have been characterized as “male chauvinists”…

Special Revelation

The Scriptures indicate that God has used two major kinds of divine revelation to uncover truth to mankind: general and special revelation. General revelation, which is God’s uncovering of knowledge through means…

The Jewishness Of Jesus

I had never seen Michael, our Israeli guide, so excited. Our Institute of Biblical Studies group was touring the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem, seeing the usual sights, when Michael motioned us to join him on the other side of the church. He led us down a corridor into a small chapel. Michael explained in hushed tones that this was a very ancient part of the church, and tourist groups usually do not get to see it.

Jesus in the Rabbinical Literature

It is easy to determine the Jewish opinion of Jesus during His earthly ministry by reading the Gospel accounts. In simple terms, the common people, even if they did not accept His Messianic claims, generally…

Jesus in Josephus

Flavius Josephus was a Jerusalemite priest who lived in the last half of the first century. He also was the commander of the Jewish forces in Galilee during the war with Rome from AD 66–70.

Jesus in Modern Judaism

The name Jesus means different things to different people. To some, He is a great prophet, teacher, or leader, but others use His name as a curse. While some have never heard His name…

Capernaum: A Town That Lost the Light

Capernaum was a picturesque town located on the northwestern shore of Galilee where the Jordan enters the lake. The city lay on a gentle slope rising from one of the numerous shallow coves that lend…

Jesus’ Ministry on the Sea of Galilee

When the darkness of night falls, it creeps around the world from east to west. In the same manner, the first beams of morning sunlight sweep around the world from east to west.

But I Say Unto You: Matthew 5:21–48

Swimming pools become graveyards for many young children each summer. To prevent these needless tragedies, some municipalities require fences around pool perimeters. Some pool owners take the additional safety measure of installing another barrier on…

Bread Enough for All

John the Baptist had boldly confronted sin in the palace of Herod. Herod had taken his brother’s wife Herodias for himself, and John was beheaded for his decrying confrontation of this sin.

“Of Whom Speaketh the Prophet This?”

In August of each year, the synagogue Scripture reading from the prophets is taken from the Book of Isaiah. Around the third Sabbath in August, the reading ends at Isaiah 52:12…

Digging Up Israel

The ground in front of the beautiful Golden Gate was still soft from the recent heavy rains. An archaeology student confidently stepped back from the gate to capture its entire view in his camera…

From Babylon To Bethlehem

Lord Byron, in “The Destruction of Sennacherib,” caught in vivid poetic form not only the essence of a battle long gone, but the final convulsions of the “times of the Gentiles.” Thus, human observation confirms…

Babylon and Medo-Persia

In Luke 21:24 Jesus Christ referred to “the times of the Gentiles,” when the Gentiles would be the dominant power in the world and Israel would be at the mercy of or dependent upon…

Trouble In The Temple: Matthew 23:37–24:2

As with so many important chapters in God’s Word, Matthew 24 actually begins at the end of the previous chapter. The 23rd chapter records what was undoubtedly the hardest-hitting message Jesus delivered during His earthly…

Jesus Is Better Than the Prophets

Something within human beings compels them to look for something new—a better way, better quality, better fashion. “Build a better mousetrap,” youngsters of another generation were told…

Jesus Is Better Than the Angels

When writing to his Jewish readers of the apostolic age, the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews wanted to demonstrate the superiority of the divine revelation that gave birth to Christianity over the divine…

Jesus Is Better Than Moses

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to read your newspaper at night without the convenience of a light bulb? Hard to imagine, isn’t it? Yet this luxury is only 100 years old.

Ruth and the Messiah

The charming little account contained in the Book of Ruth has all the interest-catching elements of an absorbing short story. The reader is exposed to a plot containing elements of tragedy, conflict, characterization, and resolution.

A Portrait of the Messiah

With the shadow of the cross shading their minds, two of Christ’s disciples left Jerusalem. They were headed for Emmaus, a village seven miles from the city.

Messiah in the Law

The Law is known in Hebrew as the Torah, the first of the three traditional divisions of the Hebrew Bible. The other two divisions are the Prophets and the Writings.

Messiah in the Psalms

In the Hebrew Scriptures, the 150 Psalms are divided into five books. These poems of prayer and praise cover many themes and are often stated in terms of human experience.

Messiah in the Old Testament Prophets

Messiah would come to crush all the Gentile nations gathered against Israel and Jerusalem, save the repentant remnant of Israel, and provide security for Israel (Isa. 59:18–21; 63:1–6; Joel 3; Mic. 5:4–9; Zech. 14:12).

Paul’s Encounter With the Risen Savior

Regarding the miraculous turnabout of Rabbi Saul, Church historian Philip Schaff, states, “The transformation of the most dangerous persecutor into the most successful promoter of Christianity is nothing less than a miracle of divine grace.

Further Evaluation of Christian Reconstructionism

The previous article in this series focused on several problems related to the Reconstructionist view of history and eschatology. The present article examines problems related to other areas of Reconstructionism.

No Middle Wall

With His talk of crucifixion at Jerusalem, Jesus’ disciples were struck dumb with consternation. Their anticipation and preparation had been geared for the coming Kingdom—a literal, one-thousand-year era during which the Messiah/King Himself would take…

Interpretations and Beliefs of Christian Reconstructionism

Our previous article noted that the heart of Christian Reconstructionism (also known as Dominion Theology and Theonomy) is a postmillennial view of history. According to this view, at the time of creation God gave man…

“O Come, O Come, Immanuel”

Whether he understood the proper context of his words or not, the 12th-century hymn writer captured the mood of a remnant of Jewry who were longing for the appearance of the Christ.

Who Is the True Messiah?

We nearly fell out of our cushioned synagogue seats when we heard the rabbi’s answer! I had accompanied a group of believers from a suburban Detroit church to a conservative synagogue to learn more about…

Replacing the Heart of Stone

“Born Again Jews are Rocking in the U.S.S.R.” This was the headline on the second page of the September 1989 edition of the local San Diego Jewish newspaper. With much anticipation, I read the article.