The woman said, “I know that Messiah” (called Christ) “is coming. When he comes, he will explain everything to us.”
- John 4:25
“And in Jesus Christ …”
- from The Apostles’ Creed
There is a particular story that is being fulfilled in Jesus Christ.
In the middle of the second century, a group began to form within the Christian church under the leadership of a man named Marcion. The Marcionites wanted to trash the Jewish story and to rescue the Christian faith from what they perceived to be its captivity to a lower religion.
With this part of the creed – “Jesus Christ” – our spiritual grandparents deliberately connected Jesus with the Jewish story. For generations the Jewish people longed and prayed that God would send his Messiah (literally “his Anointed One”) to rescue his people. The word “Messiah” translated into Greek as the word “Christ.” And God had promised to send that savior all throughout the Old Testament as the fulfillment of the Jewish story.
This affirmation of Jesus’ Jewish roots also served as an extension of the Jewish story. Christianity issued a radical call to everyone – Jew and Gentile alike – to embrace the Promised One. Through generations of captivity and disaster, hope of salvation dwindled. But in Jesus, we see the promise-making God keeping his promises and, more than that, fulfilling his promises in spectacular ways.
Affirming Jesus as the Christ reminds us of three things:
- All of God’s promises are “Yes” in Christ. Jesus fulfills all the promises God makes to us.
- The salvation Jesus brings demonstrates the character of God. God is both a promise-maker and a promise-keeper.
- Believing in Jesus as the Christ pushes back against our doubt when God seems slow to keep his promises.
As you reflect on Jesus the Christ today,
- What promises of God can you name?
- How has Jesus fulfilled God’s promises for you?
- Where are you struggling to believe that God has already or will keep his promises?