Introduction As Christians, our focus is on our Lord Jesus Christ. The catechism took quite some time (Lord’s Days 11 to 19) to discuss his identity and his work. It says much less about the Holy Spirit. An obvious reason is that the Apostles’ Creed has only that short line: “I believe in the Holy … Continue reading Who is the Holy Spirit (LD 20, Nicene Creed)
Introduction After completing his ministry on earth, Jesus returned to heaven. He will be there until he comes back for the final stage of history. While we live our lives here on earth, what is Jesus doing? Is he simply enjoying being back with his Father, basking in heavenly glory? No, our Lord Jesus is … Continue reading Christ’s work in heaven (LD 18-19, q&a 49-51)
Introduction When Jesus rose out of the grave, his disciples were excited. They had put all of their hopes on him, and when he had died on the cross they were desperate. His resurrection meant that his work would continue. With a Master who was even more powerful than death itself, what could stop his … Continue reading He is still with us (LD 18, q&a 46-48)
“Jesus rose from the dead.”“God raised Jesus from the dead.” Which of these statements is the most correct? In the first sentence, the intransitive verb “rise” is used. Jesus is the one acting here: he himself came out of death. But in the second sentence, we have the transitive verb “raise”. God the Father is … Continue reading Risen or raised?
Introduction In the last several lessons we discussed the identity of our Redeemer. He is Jesus, Saviour; he is Christ, the Anointed One; he is the only-begotten Son of the Father, and he is our Lord. As we continue along in the Apostles’ Creed, we now discuss his work and life. Traditionally, we divide the … Continue reading Heaven and earth meet (LD 14, q&a 35-36)
In Old Testament times, it was common practice to anoint officials: prophets, priests, and kings. But even the patriarchs (Abram, Isaac, Jacob) are called God’s “anointed ones” in Ps. 105:15. The ritual of anointing with oil is, first of all, a sign of dedication to God. In Gen. 28:18 we read that Jacob poured oil … Continue reading Anointing in the Old Testament
Introduction The name of our Saviour is “Jesus”. But we often call him “Jesus Christ”, or sometimes simply “Christ”. Technically, “Christ” is not a name but a title; so it is really “Jesus the Christ”. This title is commonly used in the New Testament: we find the name “Jesus” about 900 times, and the title … Continue reading The Anointed One (LD 12, q&a 31)