Part 3: His Life and Ministry
The Son of God came to live life on earth as a human, giving us an example for how we should live our lives and conduct ministry.
As a child Jesus lived with Joseph and Mary in Egypt for a short time until King Herod died.
"After Herod died, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt and said, 'Get up, take the child and His mother and go to the land of Israel, for those who were trying to take the child's life are dead.' So he got up, took the child and His mother and went to the land of Israel. But when he heard that Archelaus was reigning in Judea in place of his father Herod, he was afraid to go there. Having been warned in a dream, he withdrew to the district of Galilee, and he went and lived in a town called Nazareth." (Matthew 2:19-23). So Jesus grew up and spent much of his life in a small town in Israel called Nazareth.
When Jesus was about 30 years old, He began His public ministry.
His cousin John the Baptist was a prophet who spoke truth to Israel and baptized people in the River Jordan. "Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptized by John. But John tried to deter Him, saying, 'I need to be baptized by You, and do You come to me?'
"Jesus replied, 'Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness.'" (Matthew 3:13-15). So John baptized Jesus. "As soon as Jesus was baptized, He went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and He saw the spirit of God descending like a dove and lighting on Him. And a voice from heaven said, 'This is My Son, whom I love; with Him I am well pleased.'" (Matthew 3:16-18).
Jesus began to preach and gather disciples
-- people who would follow Him and later begin the Christian church. "As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, He saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. 'Come, follow me,' Jesus said, 'and I will make you fishers of men.' At once they left their nets and followed Him." (Matthew 4:18-20). Jesus soon had gathered disciples who were to be the inner group of His followers, but His ministry was not limited to them. Thousands of people would gather to listen to His teaching as He traveled throughout Israel.
Jesus taught about God’s kingdom, and His love and righteousness.
He healed the sick; on three occasions He raised people from the dead. Attracted by His miracles, people tried to make Him an earthly king, but He told them that His kingdom was not of this world. Jesus did not come to establish an earthly political kingdom; He came as the King of Kings who would reign for all eternity in our hearts. Someday Jesus would return to earth and establish His kingdom which would never end, but it was not yet His time for this.
Jesus lived an incredible life. What attracts you to Jesus? He asks you to follow him - what would you say?