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Who is Jesus of Nazareth?


In the first century Judea, there lived a man named in a little town called Nazareth. His name is יְהוֹשֻׁעַ‬ (Yehoshua), shortened to יֵשׁוּעַ (Yeshua). These are standard Hebrew words that literally mean יַהְוֶה ("YHWH/Yahweh Saves"). In English, we call His name Jesus.

And He made some incredible claims that many, including me, believe are true, because He had the power to prove them. Here's a video to help explain:



In chapter 40 of the book of the prophet Isaiah, these words are recorded in verses 3-5, 9-11 :

A voice of one calling:
“In the wilderness prepare
    the way for יַהְוֶה;
make straight in the desert
    a highway for our God.
Every valley shall be raised up,
    every mountain and hill made low;
the rough ground shall become level,
    the rugged places a plain.
And the glory of יַהְוֶה will be revealed,
    and all people will see it together.
        For the mouth of יַהְוֶה has spoken.”

...

 You who bring good news to Zion,
    go up on a high mountain.
 You who bring good news to Jerusalem,
    lift up your voice with a shout,
 lift it up, do not be afraid;
    say to the towns of Judah,
    “Here is your God!”
 See, Sovereign יַהְוֶה comes with power,
    and he rules with a mighty arm.
 See, his reward is with him,
    and his recompense accompanies him.
 He tends his flock like a shepherd:
    He gathers the lambs in his arms
 and carries them close to his heart;
    he gently leads those that have young.

Did you notice what it looks like when Sovereign יַהְוֶה comes with power and His mighty Arm rules? It looks like a shepherd, gathering lambs in his arms, and carrying them close to his heart.

The whole of Isaiah 40 is one of the many connection points of the New Testament, and the origin of the concept of the "good news" or Gospel. In Mark 1:1-4:

The beginning of the good news 
about Jesus the Messiah, the Son of 
God, as it is written in Isaiah the 
prophet:

“I will send my messenger ahead of you,
    who will prepare your way”—
“a voice of one calling in the wilderness,
    ‘Prepare the way for the Lord,
    make straight paths for him.’

And so John the Baptist appeared in the 
wilderness, preaching a baptism of 
repentance for the forgiveness of 
sins.

The author of Mark is telling a story about a man who appeared -- John the Baptist -- fulfilling the Isaiah 40 prophecy, as he was preparing the way for 'the Lord' which the narrative bears out is Jesus. (Continue reading Mark 1 if you wish.) But notice who was coming in Isaiah 40? Sovereign יַהְוֶה will come and rule with His Arm.

This is a bold claim: Jesus is the embodiment of יַהְוֶה, the Son of God (which means the rightful human king of Israel - see Psalm 2), and the Son of Man (the divine, eternal human King who would die - see Daniel 7, Isaiah 53).

This is the claim of the "good news" - that God has come in the person of Jesus, to save us.

"I, even I, am יַהְוֶה, 
and apart from me there is no savior." 
- Isaiah 43:11


"In the beginning was the Word, 
and the Word was with God, 
and the Word was God." 
- John 1:1


"The Word became flesh 
and made his dwelling among us. 
We have seen his glory, 
the glory of the one and only Son, 
who came from the Father, 
full of grace and truth." 
- John 1:14
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