Posted by Worldview Warriors On Monday, January 14, 2013 0 comments

Christmas was a couple weeks ago, and I’d be willing to bet that you had been waiting and hoping for Christmas for weeks before it finally came. I know for me, as a kid that month or so before Christmas seemed to go SO slowly! One day at a time I’d tear a link off the paper chain I’d usually make to count down, and it would shrink ever so slowly. Then when Christmas finally came, it was so exciting!! I couldn’t wait for Christmas morning, anticipating the presents I would be getting.

The people of Israel had a similar anticipation, but they had to wait much longer than a month or even a year - they had to wait for around 4,000 years for their Messiah to come!

The Hebrew word for messiah is mashiah, which comes from the word meaning “to save.” The Messiah is the promised deliverer of Israel, who would come to establish God’s kingdom. The Greek word for messiah is Christos, which is also the word we get Christ from - as in Jesus Christ. There are many, many prophecies in the Old Testament that point to the Messiah - what he would be like, what he would do, etc. The Israelites were to watch for all of those prophecies to be fulfilled.

One day, in a synagogue (place of worship) in the small town of Nazareth, Jesus did just that. Read Luke 4:16-21:
[Jesus] went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. He stood up to read, and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written:
“The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
because he has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”
Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him. He began by saying to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”

The quotation in the middle of that passage is from the book of Isaiah - one of the Old Testament prophets who prophesied many things about the coming messiah. Did you catch the last sentence there? Jesus said that this scripture was fulfilled that day, right there in front of them - meaning He is the promised Messiah!

But in case the people didn’t get it then, later on in the book of Acts, Peter explains it again to a multitude of people, finishing with this sentence: “Therefore let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Messiah.” (Acts 2:36)

Not only should Israel be assured that Jesus is the Messiah, but we can be certain of that as well. Jesus is the promised One who came to earth, died, and was resurrected to be our Messiah, our Savior from our sins. He did the hard work; all we need to do is believe in Him as our Messiah!