We have found the Messiah (which means “Christ”) (v.41).
Nearly every year, tabloids become embroiled in scandals over their publishing of private photographs of British royalty. Contemporary figures live under scrutiny as they deal with the ever-present paparazzi. With each scandal, there’s a furious debate over the difference between news and the boundaries of privacy. The intense interest won’t wane, however. The royal family holds a title, and the title represents power and fascination.
Jesus took on a title that drew followers; but unlike the glamour of modern royals, His title meant He was surrendering Himself to death. Jesus’ title was “the Christ” (John 1:41). Though this title became used as part of His name, Jesus Christ, it was first presented as a title: the Christ.
Christ comes from the Hebrew word meaning “anointed one” and ultimately came to be a reference to the Messiah—the King in the line of David and the One who would enact God’s promises for Israel. The Christ was the One sent from God, the One for whom Israel and the whole world had waited. The Christ was the One who would bring “God’s unfailing love and faithfulness” (John 1:17).
You can imagine the upheaval, the threat to Rome and to religious authorities, when Jesus’ followers began calling him Christ. When you’re the ruler in the land (or the synagogue or the public square), you don’t take kindly to someone else asserting his rule. Jesus, however, was unlike any ruler the world had ever known. John exclaimed, “Look! There is the Lamb of God!” (1:36). John couldn’t have understood the full meaning of his words: The Christ would not rule with an iron fist but rather lay down His life, like a lamb, for the sake of love.
Read Colossians 1:1-8. Note how many times Paul uses the word Christ. Why do you think Paul emphasized this title for Jesus?
What does it mean to you for Jesus to be your Christ? What do you need to surrender to Jesus the Christ?