As children around you await Christmas morning, I hope you are awaiting the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ - both excited about the same day but with different mindsets. I have enjoyed this study of the Old Testament prophecies about Jesus and how they were fulfilled. We have true hope in Christ and assurance that we are following the One, whom God has sent and promised to us in ages past.
This is week two of the Messianic Prophecy series. Messianic prophecies is a fancy phrase for the things God foretold about Jesus that did in fact come true during His life on earth. Last week, we talked about prophecies regarding Jesus’ lineage and birth/ early years. Today, we will take a look at the names of Christ and His earthly ministry as God predicted it and as it came to pass.
Again, I encourage you to pick one or two prophecies this week and study their Old Testament and New Testament passages in context. Before you begin, quickly claim your FREE pdf guide, “10 Steps to Approaching God’s Word with Confidence.” It’ll help you get the most out of any passage you are studying.
Prophecies Regarding Christ’s Names
Names carry much more significance in the Bible than they do in our culture today. It’s not just the word by which we identify a person or thing, but rather it tells us about them. Jesus is called anointed, eternal, God in the flesh, the Son of God, and our King. Christ is actually given many more names in the Bible but these are the ones that were specifically prophesied about the Messiah and fulfilled in Christ during His time on earth. Let’s take a look.
Prophecy: Jesus is called anointed and eternal.
“Let your sharp arrows pierce the hearts of the king’s enemies; let the nations fall beneath your feet. Your throne, O God, will last for ever and ever; a scepter of justice will be the scepter of your kingdom. You love righteousness and hate wickedness; therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions by anointing you with the oil of joy.” Psalm 45:6-7
“In the time of those kings, the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be destroyed, nor will it be left to another people. It will crush all those kingdoms and bring them to an end, but it will itself endure forever.” Daniel 2:44
“And he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.” Luke 1:33
“But about the Son he says, 'Your throne, O God, will last for ever and ever; a scepter of justice will be the scepter of your kingdom. You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions by anointing you with the oil of joy.' He also says, 'In the beginning, Lord, you laid the foundations of the earth, and the heavens are the work of your hands. They will perish, but you remain; they will all wear out like a garment. You will roll them up like a robe; like a garment they will be changed. But you remain the same, and your years will never end.'” Hebrews 1:8-12
Prophecy: Jesus is called Immanuel.
“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.” Isaiah 7:14
“The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him 'Immanuel' (which means 'God with us').” Matthew 1:23
Prophecy: Jesus is called the son of God.
“I will proclaim the Lord’s decree: He said to me, "You are my son; today I have become your father.'” Psalm 2:7
“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 alighting on him. And a voice from heaven said, 'This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.'” Matthew 3:16-17
Prophecy: Jesus is called King.
“I have installed my king on Zion, my holy mountain.” Psalm 2:6
“Rejoice greatly, Daughter Zion! Shout, Daughter Jerusalem! See, your king comes to you, righteous and victorious, lowly and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.” Zechariah 9:9
“Above his head they placed the written charge against him: this is jesus, the king of the jews.” Matthew 27:37
“When they brought the colt to Jesus and threw their cloaks over it, he sat on it. Many people spread their cloaks on the road, while others spread branches they had cut in the fields. Those who went ahead and those who followed shouted, 'Hosanna!'Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David! Hosanna in the highest heaven!' Jesus entered Jerusalem and went into the temple courts. He looked around at everything, but since it was already late, he went out to Bethany with the Twelve.” Mark 11:7-11
Prophecies Regarding Christ’s Ministry
God also foretold what the Messiah would do while among us, that He would be announced by a special messenger, and even how the people would respond to Him. We see a glimpse of the latter today but next week will take a look at all the details God predicted about Christ’s the events leading up to Christ’s death. For now, here are the Messianic prophecies that Jesus fulfilled while ministering here on earth.
Prophecy: A messenger will prepare the way.
“A voice of one calling: 'In the wilderness prepare the way for the Lord; make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be raised up, every mountain and hill made low; the rough ground shall become level, the rugged places a plain. And the glory of the Lord will be revealed, and all people will see it together. For the mouth of the Lord has spoken.'” Isaiah 40:3-5
“He went into all the country around the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. As it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet: 'A voice of one calling in the wilderness, ‘Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him. Every valley shall be filled in, every mountain and hill made low. The crooked roads shall become straight, the rough ways smooth. And all people will see God’s salvation.''” Luke 3:3-6
Prophecy: Jesus was rejected by His own people.
“I am a foreigner to my own family, a stranger to my own mother’s children.” Psalm 69:8
“He was despised and rejected by mankind, a man of suffering, and familiar with pain. Like one from whom people hide their faces he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.” Isaiah 53:3
“He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him.” John 1:11
“For even his own brothers did not believe in him.” John 7:5
Prophecy: Jesus was a prophet.
“The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your fellow Israelites. You must listen to him.” Deuteronomy 18:15
“And that he may send the Messiah, who has been appointed for you—even Jesus. Heaven must receive him until the time comes for God to restore everything, as he promised long ago through his holy prophets. For Moses said, ‘The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among your own people; you must listen to everything he tells you.'” Acts 3:20-22
Prophecy: Jesus brought light to Galilee.
“Nevertheless, there will be no more gloom for those who were in distress. In the past he humbled the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, but in the future he will honor Galilee of the nations, by the Way of the Sea, beyond the Jordan— The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of deep darkness a light has dawned.” Isaiah 9:1-2
“Leaving Nazareth, he went and lived in Capernaum, which was by the lake in the area of Zebulun and Naphtali— to fulfill what was said through the prophet Isaiah: 'Land of Zebulun and land of Naphtali, the Way of the Sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles—the people living in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned.'” Matthew 4:13-16
Prophecy: Jesus spoke in parables.
“I will open my mouth with a parable; I will utter hidden things, things from of old—things we have heard and known, things our ancestors have told us. We will not hide them from their descendants; we will tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord, his power, and the wonders he has done.” Psalm 78:2-4
“He said, 'Go and tell this people: ‘Be ever hearing, but never understanding; be ever seeing, but never perceiving.’ Make the heart of this people calloused; make their ears dull and close their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts, and turn and be healed.'” Isaiah 6:9-10
“The disciples came to him and asked, 'Why do you speak to the people in parables?' He replied, 'Because the knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven has been given to you, but not to them. Whoever has will be given more, and they will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what they have will be taken from them. This is why I speak to them in parables: 'Though seeing, they do not see; though hearing, they do not hear or understand. In them is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah: ‘You will be ever hearing but never understanding; you will be ever seeing but never perceiving. For this people’s heart has become calloused; they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them.’ […] Jesus spoke all these things to the crowd in parables; he did not say anything to them without using a parable. So was fulfilled what was spoken through the prophet: 'I will open my mouth in parables, I will utter things hidden since the creation of the world.'” Matthew 13:10-15, 34-35
Prophecy: Jesus heals the broken-hearted.
“The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn.” Isaiah 61:1-2
“He went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. He stood up to read, and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written: 'The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.' Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him. He began by saying to them, 'Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.'” Luke 4:16-21
Prophecy: Jesus was praised by children.
“Through the praise of children and infants you have established a stronghold against your enemies, to silence the foe and the avenger.” Psalm 8:2
“'Do you hear what these children are saying?' they asked him. 'Yes,' replied Jesus, 'have you never read, ‘From the lips of children and infants you, Lord, have called forth your praise’?'” Matthew 21:16
Come back again next week for the conclusion of this series.