Was Jesus a Real Person?
The answer to that simple question may be a resounding “Yes!” for you; but for some, it’s not so clear. In fact, one 2015 study commissioned by the Church of England revealed that 40% of adults in the UK either didn’t believe Jesus was a real person or weren’t sure. The same study showed that 25% of 18-34 year olds actually believed Jesus was a “mythical or fictional character.” In the US, a 2017 study, commissioned by Pew Research, revealed that 33% of Americans believe in a higher power of some kind, but not the God described in the Bible; which means they reject Jesus. So as we begin our Christmas season, we can start by making clear that Jesus was indeed a real, historical person.
When I was growing up in the gaudy, glorious 1970’s, I loved watching those clunky, stop-motion Christmas gems. Who could forget Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town and one of my personal favorites, Nestor, the Long-Eared Christmas Donkey?! It’s really interesting how, over many years, the Christmas story has morphed into lots of tall tales and lore that has very little, and sometimes nothing, to do with the true Christmas story.
During our Christmas series, True Story: Unwrapping the Truth About Christmas, we’re going to answer some critical questions, including this question: Was Jesus a real person? To be clear, the answer to that question is “absolutely yes!” But how can we be so sure? To find out, click on the sermon link to find out!
After we made an indisputable argument for Jesus’ existence, we spent some time looking at the major characters in His birth story and some of the life lessons they teach us.
Mary models remarkable faith and trust in God when the angel shares God’s plan for her to give brith to Jesus. Despite likely having plenty of unanswered questions, unresolved fears and serious concerns, she surrenders herself completely to the Lord’s lead in her life! 38 “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May your word to me be fulfilled.” Luke 1:39. Will you show that level of faith and trust in the Lord?
Joseph, despite initially having his own concerns about what was happening with Mary, confidently obeyed the Lord, even when it wasn’t easy. 24 When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. Matthew 1:24. Sometimes, obeying God is not easy… loving enemies, offering forgiveness, exhibiting mercy and grace, taking steps of faith, and so much more, is not easy. Will you confidently obey Him, even when it’s hard
The Shepherds were the first to receive the “good news” about the birth of the Christ. That news didn’t come first to the religious elite, or to powerful political leaders, or to the world’s wealthiest; it came to those who would have been considered outcasts and riffraff in their culture. That shows us that Jesus came for all who chose to believe and accept Him as Savior. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. Luke 2:10-11. Thank God He sent a Savior for you, no matter who you are!
The Wise Men came from far away to visit and to worship Jesus. They traveled hundreds of miles to see Him, which shows us that Jesus didn’t just come to save just the Jews, but He came to save all who are far from God. 11 On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh. Matthew 2:11. No matter how far you may be from God, you can still seek and find Jesus!