Long Awaited Promise
Verse 1 James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes scattered among the nations: Greetings.
After discussing the Lordship of Jesus yesterday we turn our focus to the other title that James uses for Jesus – Christ.
While many people use Christ as if it were Jesus’ last name, the truth is it that it is what signifies Him as the long awaited Messiah. This was a title that was only used by those who had accepted Him as the Promised One from God.
God had promised Jesus way back in the Garden of Eden at the Fall. He then reminded each generation of this promise up until the 400 years of silence. While God had been silent, the Jewish people had not lost hope that God would not keep His word. In fact their hopes were intensifying as the Romans ruled over them. The Jewish leaders had set their hearts on a Savior that was to save them physically, totally missing that God had something much bigger in store for His people.
While the religious leaders were looking for a short term fix, God was setting up the greatest promise fulfillment of all time. He planned the perfect time to send Jesus to the earth to be the long term Savior. He knew that His people didn’t need to be saved from the Romans as much as they needed to be saved from their sins. God’s plan was beneficial for eternity.
Those closest to Jesus may not have understood the need for Him to die to pay for the sins of all time but they knew Jesus was the Awaited One. They saw Him doing things that they had not seen anyone else do. He did miracles as if they were the easiest things for Him to do. They saw the lame and blind healed, they saw Lazarus walk out from the grave after he was in there for 4 days. There were so many things that pointed to Him being the Christ.
James had known Jesus longer than any of the other followers and so when He called Jesus “Christ” he was saying that he knew that his brother wasn’t equal with him. Jesus was THE ONE. God had fulfilled His promise. He knew that Jesus was the standard that we should measure ourselves to. If we want to get a tune up on our lives, we need to know who He is so that we can see where we need to change.
Making It Personal
Do you see Jesus as the one to measure yourself by? Is He your Savior? How does having Him as your Savior change the way you live?
Making It Personal Kids
Why did God promise to send Jesus? Why did Jesus have to die? Does knowing that Jesus died for your sins make you want to live better?
Father, thank You for keeping Your promises, not just to the Jews but to all of Your people. Give us the wisdom to live as You want us to live. In Jesus’ name, amen.