The greatest person who has ever lived is Jesus Christ. Jesus is the Son of God. The entire Bible tells about Jesus. The Old Testament contains more than 300 prophecies about Jesus. The first four books of the New Testament (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John) tell of His birth, ministry, death, and resurrection from the dead. The rest of the New Testament tells us about the establishment of His church and how to become a member of it (the Book of Acts); instructions on how to be faithful to the Lord as individuals and congregations in matters of daily living and in regard to the structure and mission of the church (Romans to Jude); and the victory to be enjoyed by the faithful who overcome and endure all things for the sake of Jesus and His church (Revelation).
Jesus died for the sins of mankind. God had planned this from the beginning. Genesis 3:15 is the first prophecy of the death of Jesus for sins; "And I [God] will put enmity Between you [the serpent, called the devil] and the woman, And between your seed and her Seed [Jesus Christ]; He [Jesus] shall bruise your [the devil’s] head, And you [the devil] shall bruise His [Jesus’] heel" (Genesis 3:15).
Jesus is the seed of woman. He bruised the head of Satan when He died on the cross as a sacrifice for sins. There are hundreds of other prophecies about Jesus in the Old Testament. We can find these prophecies fulfilled in the New Testament. For example, these prophecies include how He would be born (Isaiah 7:14, Matthew 1:23); where He would be born (Micah 5:2; Matthew 2:1); why He would be born (Isaiah 52:10; Matthew 1:21); when He would be born (Daniel 2:44-45; Luke 2:1-7); how He would die (Psalm 22:16-18; Matthew 27:33-35; and why He would die (Isaiah 53; Matthew 20:28; Galatians 1:3-4).
Jesus was born in Bethlehem. His mother, Mary, was a virgin. She had conceived Jesus in her womb before she married Joseph. She did not become pregnant by any man. She conceived Him by the Holy Spirit. Jesus had no human father, for He was the Son of God. This was according to what an angel had told Mary; "And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name Jesus. Then Mary said to the angel, 'How can this be, since I do not know a man?' And the angel answered and said to her, 'The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God'" (Luke 1:31,34,35).
The Bible does not tell us much about the early years of Jesus’ life. It tells us that "Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men" (Luke 2:52).
At about the age of 30, Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist. After His baptism, Jesus went into the desert. At the end of forty days, Satan came and tempted Him. Jesus was the Son of God, He was also the son of Mary. Therefore, He was both human and divine. Since He was human, He was tempted in every way as we are; For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin" (Hebrews 4:15).
Then Jesus began preaching. "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel" (Mark 1:15). Jesus preached the kingdom of God. He also worked many miracles. His miracles prove that God had sent Him. He healed the sick and cast out evil spirits (Mark 1:34,35), restored sight to the blind (Mark 10:46-52), fed the hungry (Mark 6:34-44), and raised the dead (Luke 7:11-16; John 11).
Most scholars agree that the personal ministry of Jesus lasted about three and a half years. When the time came for Him to fulfill His mission, He went to Jerusalem to keep the feast of the Passover. The religious leaders of Israel were jealous of Jesus. They wanted to kill Him. Jesus also knew that He must die as a sacrifice for the sins of the whole world. For some time, Jesus had been preparing His disciples for His death as can be seen in Matthew 16:21; "From that time Jesus began to show to His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem, and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised the third day".
Jesus ate the Passover with His apostles. Then He went into the Garden of Gethsemane where He prayed. About midnight, the soldiers came to arrest Him. Jesus was taken before the high priest. Later, He was condemned by the Jewish Council. They sent Him to Pilate, the governor, for sentence. Pilate knew that Jesus was innocent. He wanted to free Him, but feared he might displease the people. Therefore, he had Jesus beaten and crucified.
Crucifixion was a slow, painful death. Jesus’ hands were nailed to the cross. He hung on the cross while people mocked and insulted Him. After about six hours, He died. Two of Jesus’ disciples took His body down from the cross. On Friday evening, they buried the body of Jesus.
Early on Sunday morning, the first day of the week, Jesus arose from the dead. The Apostle Paul wrote years later about the resurrection of Jesus; "For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures" (1 Corinthians 15:3,4).
Jesus has power even over death. He will one day raise from the dead those who believe in Him.
Jesus Christ died for you. He was raised for you. You can have eternal life by believing in Him. Have you accepted Christ as your Savior by obeying the gospel?
Many thanks to "Truth for the World" for allowing us to use their material!