Monday, December 23, 2013
Posted on 9:00 AM by daybyday mormon
Guest Blogger Melanie shares insights on Christ through Old Testament prophecies.
If you look for the name “Jesus Christ” in the Old Testament, you will not find it. He is called by many other names, The Good Shepherd, the King of Glory, Jehovah, the Messiah to name a few. But by whatever name, Jesus is the center of the Old Testament. Indeed, the purpose of the Old Testament was to prophesy of Christ: to teach of Him and His mission; to prophesy of His coming, to prepare the people for Him. And yet for the most part, the people missed this. There are literally dozens of prophecies declaring the coming of the Messiah, and Jesus fulfilled them all. Some of them were fulfilled very publicly, others very quietly.
The prophet Amos said, “Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets.” (Amos 3:7) So Prophets have always taught that Jesus would come, that He would deliver His people.
Jeremiah foretold His lineage, that he would be of David’s line. (Jeremiah 23:5) The scriptures tell us both Mary and Joseph were of the lineage of David.
Isaiah told the people of the Old Testament that a virgin would conceive and bear a son. (Isaiah 7:14)
Micah prophesied that Jesus would be born in Bethlehem, a small village of no importance in the Jewish society of Jesus’s time. (Micah 5:2) Hosea prophesied that the Messiah would be called out of Egypt. (Hosea11:1) This might have sounded like the Prophets didn’t agree, but Luke tells us of his birth in a stable in Bethlehem, the City of David. And Matthew tells of Herod’s evil decree that all boy children should be killed and Joseph taking his little family to Egypt for safety.
The Prophets didn’t stop at Jesus’s birth. They talked of His ministry: that it would begin in Galilee (Isaiah 9:1-2), that he would teach in parables (Psalms 78:2), that it would be marked by miracles (Isaiah 35: 5 – 6.) They talked of his crucifixion: that He would be sold for 30 pieces of silver (Zechariah 11:12), be betrayed by His friend (Psalms 41:9), deserted by his associates (Zechariah 13:7), have His hands and feet pierced (Psalms22:16). They talked of His resurrection: that he would rise from death (Psalms 2:7), and of His mission: that He was wounded for our transgressions (Isaiah 53:5) and that He made it possible for all the dead to rise (Daniel 12:2).
We are preparing to celebrate Christmas. We have two ways to approach this. We can celebrate like the world does, which if you watch TV apparently means buying expensive cars with big red bows and going to parties. Or we can focus on Jesus Christ.
I hope we all recognize our Savior. I hope we celebrate not just the Baby, but the life and ministry and sacrifice of the Man. I hope we all worry less about the world and more about the Savior of the World. Each day, we have the opportunity to celebrate His divinity. He will come again; the prophets have been telling us that for thousands of years. It is our responsibility and privilege to seek diligently with pure hearts in order to recognize the signs, in order to know our Savior. He came, He atoned for our sins, He died and rose from the dead, and He will come again. May we all be ready to welcome Him.