And he said, Take heed that ye be not deceived: for many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and the time draweth near: go ye not therefore after them. ~Luke 21:8
Years ago, when my father owned a butcher market, a customer gave him what he later learned to be counterfeit money. The Treasury Department got involved, and uncovered a counterfeiting ring that was passing off a lot of fake bills. Dad had to appear as a witness in the case, as the government prosecuted the criminals. Dad learned how to discern real money from counterfeit. Jesus warned that “counterfeit christs” would arise, claiming to be Himself. He said, “Many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ.” This morning, let us consider how we can discern the real Jesus from the false Jesus.
We can know the real Jesus because of His person.
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God,” John 1:1-2 “Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high:” Heb. 1:2-3. Jesus Christ is God come in the flesh. Unlike every false christ, who is a sinner by nature, Jesus is the Son of God Who entered this world by a virgin birth and with a sinless life. Jesus was 100% Man, yet at all times 100% God. Jesus and God the Father are co-equal, co-eternal, and co-essential. He and the Father are Creator-God, Commander-God, and completely God.
We can know the real Jesus because of His performance.
“But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man,” Heb. 2:9. Jesus came to die for the sins of the all the world! He came to be the propitiation for our sins (1 John 2:2). Jesus satisfied all the righteous demands of God for sin through His death. His death was expiatory. Without the shedding of His blood for sin, there is no remission for sins. No counterfeit christ could satisfy God’s demands for sin through the offering of his own life. Jesus further proved His deity by His resurrection from the dead. The case for Christianity rests in an empty tomb and a resurrected Savior. Truly, Jesus alone is the Resurrection and the Life! No false christ in his death could atone for the sins of his followers, and no false christ ever came back from the dead.
We can know the real Jesus because of His perpetuity.
Jesus is eternal and infinite. He is before all things (Col. 1:17). His goings forth are from everlasting (Micah 5:2). In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God (John 1:1). God the Father declared of His Son: “But unto the Son, he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever,” Heb. 1:8. He is the Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End. He is God Who always is, always was, and always will be. Unlike false christs who had a beginning and an ending, Jesus is forever eternal.
We can know the real Jesus because of His persuasion.
“Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me,” John 14:6. Jesus declares His authenticity and authority by this one statement. He is the only way to heaven. He is all truth and no lie. He is the only means and source of eternal life. Jesus alone is the only right direction, the only right doctrine, the only right deity, and the only right decision.
Take heed, and be not deceived. There are numerous false christs around this world. There is only one true Christ: He is Jesus! Yes, He is for real!
Have a Christ-centered God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: Psalm 133-139