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Sermons from Galeton Community Church

Doctrine of Christ: Christ as Prophet

September 12, 2021 Series: Great Doctrines of the Christian Faith

Scripture: Acts 3:11–3:26

Scripture: Acts 3:11-26

Review / Introduction 

We are continuing our series on the Doctrine of Christ by looking at Christ as He fulfills the Office of Prophet in His role as mediator.

We began this study by first looking at

  • the purpose and function of a prophet; and
  • how a prophet is called

We learned that the function of a prophet can be split into two functions:

  1. Receiving the words of God
  2. Speaking the words of God

This is very important and these two elements must always go together.

Simply receiving is not enough. Speaking those words is required.

Speaking without receiving is not allowed. It was punishable by death.

We learned of the many responsibilities that are caught up in a prophet.

Prophets were...and today’s elders are:  

  • the ministers of the people Ezekiel 33:1-20
  • the interpreters of the law – both morally and spiritually

they... stress moral duty

  • urge the necessity of spiritual service Psalm 51:17
  • promote truth and righteousness. Eph. 4:14–16
  • call the people to their duty before God. Micah 6:8
  • remind the people of the gracious promises of God. Ezekiel 11:17–20
  • call people to faith and repentance unto life Isaiah 55:7

Introduction

Finally, we mentioned that foretelling the future was a part of the Prophet but it was only a small part and not an overshadowing one.

We also spoke of the necessity of a prophet...why were they even needed?

  • There can be no knowledge of God without a revelation
    • In the OT, this revelation came through the Prophets.
    • In the NT, this revelation comes through the Church with the ministry of the Word, the sacraments, and discipline.
  • The only means of salvation is by faith
    • Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. Romans 10:17
    • Faith comes only by Christ through the Holy Spirit
    • And the Spirit ordinarily uses the preaching of the word of God
    • This is the ordinary means through which the effectual call is issued

As we mentioned last week

  • man has never been authorized to unilaterally declare himself to be a prophet.
  • today, man is not authorized to unilaterally declare himself to be a teacher or elder, or pastor.

So were the prophets of old, so are the teachers, elders, and pastors of today.

God has implemented methods to call these men into leadership.

  • In the Old, God directly called men and followed that calling with signs.
  • Today, God has given us the church to examine, approve, and send men.

Outside of this process, man is elevating himself to positions that he ought not.

We looked at the calling of Jeremiah and Ezekiel.

Today, let’s look at Christ as the Prophet.

Christ Called and Recognized as Prophet

Christ’s coming as a prophet is predicted   Deut. 18:15

  • one who is going to bring God's Word
  • one who is going to teach what God demands
  • one who is going to teach that we might be the people of his covenant
  • one who will come and bring the Word of God unto the people of God
  • the Messiah

(The corresponding New Testament verse) -> Acts 3:23

The Lord is sending Jesus to bring the message of Christ

  • He is to come and to speak God's Word to us
  • He was prophesied to come and do such
  • He was the promised Seed
  • He was the mediator who comes as a prophet speaking the words of God
  • He comes revealing the truth of God.
  • He comes to teach us to repent from our Sin and wickedness.

Christ speaks of Himself as Prophet, verifying his office

As one who brings God's Word to the people. Luke 13:33

Christ claims to bring a message from God the Father

  • John 8:26–28
  • John 12:49, 50
  • John 14:10, 24
  • He has come to speak the things God has given unto him
  • He has not come to speak of Himself.
  • He is truly a prophet from God.
  • He has been sent by the Father.
  • He speaks the words of His Father

Christ has been given the words from God John-17:8

  • He is a prophet who has given the words of God to the elect.
    • They have received them
    • They have known that Christ came from God.
    • They had believed that Christ was sent as a prophet.

Christ foretold future things

Christ spoke though of the destruction of the temple   Matt 24:3-35

Christ prophesied about the destruction of Jerusalem   Luke 19:41-44

Christ taught as one having authority

He taught not as a scribe   Matt-07:29

The people themselves recognized Jesus as a prophet.

The multitude recognized Jesus as the prophet of Galilee   Matt-21:11

He was recognized as one who was coming and speaking from God.

The people said "of a truth this is the prophet"   John-07:40

His mighty works served to authenticate His message.

He was a prophet mighty in word and deed   Luke 24:19

No man can do these miracles unless God be with him   John 3:2

Others: Matt. 21:11, 46; Luke 7:16; 24:19; John 6:14; 9:17.

Christ Functions as a Prophet

A primary task of a prophet was to interpret the law –spiritually and morally

Christ performed this function as well and He did it throughout history.

He functioned as prophet before His incarnation

  • He spoke through the prophets in the Old Testament
    • by acting as the spirit of revelation 1 Pet. 1:11
  • He appeared as the angel of the Lord
    • The Angel of the Lord was not a mere symbol, nor a created angel
    • He was a personal revelation, an appearance of God among men
    • He is distinguished from God, Exod 23:20–23; Isa 63:8,9
    • He is identified with Him, Gen-16:13 / Gen 31:11,13 / Gen-32:28
    • The prevailing opinion is He was the 2nd Person of the Trinity, Mal-3:1

He functioned as prophet while He was on earth (in the days of His flesh)

  • By His teachings John 13:15
  • By His examples 2:5; 1 Pet. 2:22.

He functions as prophet after His ascension

  • By the Holy Spirit in the apostles
  • By the Holy Spirit through the Word of God in the ministers of the Word
  • By the illumination and instruction of believers through the indwelling Spirit
  • By the facts of His incarnation, His atonement, resurrection, and ascension

Christ Unique from Other Prophets

For this next part, I’m indebted to Francis Turretin and his “Electic Theology” to help express the multiple differences between Christ and the other prophets.

  • they were only servants in the house of God
    • Christ is a Son and Master Heb-03
    • The chief Shepherd 1 Pet-5:4
  • They could preach externally only but nothing further.
    • John baptized with water
    • Paul planted and watered but could not give the increase.
    • Christ operates both externally and internally
      • He writes the law itself in hearts and “baptizes with the Spirit and fire” Matt-03:11
  • Others were illuminated with divine light, by a passing, transient brilliance
    • they could not reveal future or secret things as often as they pleased.
    • Christ illuminates with a permanence
  • Others were given the Spirit only by measure
    • Christ was given without measure John-03:34
    • The Spirit rested upon him with all its gifts Isa 11:1,2
    • The treasures of wisdom and knowledge are hidden in him Col-02:3
  • Others are called for a certain time; Christ is called forever
  • God manifested himself to the others in various degrees
    • by visions and dreams, etc
    • Christ knew all things perfectly

Christ is Superior to Other Prophets

  • Christ was said to be like unto Moses Deut-18:15
    • Moses and Christ from their very birth were badly treated
      • Moses by Pharaoh
      • Christ by Herod
    • Moses delivered the people from Egypt
      • Christ delivered His people from sin
    • Moses was a mediator between God and the people
      • Christ is the mediator between God and men
    • Both confirmed their doctrine by miracles
    • Both fasted forty days
    • Both had their faces illuminated with a divine splendor
  • Christ is superior and far greater than Moses
    • Moses was far more excellent than the others
      • holding familiar discussions with God
      • whom God addressed not in vision and enigmas, or dreams but mouth to mouth  Num-12:8
    • Moses was only a servant in the house of God
      • Christ is a Son and Lord Heb-03
    • Moses promulgated the law
      • Christ the gospel.
    • Moses was a simple internuncio (a messenger between two parties)
      • Christ a true peacemaker
    • Moses had glory in his ministration but temporary and fading
      • The glory of Christ is constant and eternal 2 Cor-03:11

Conclusion

We can begin to understand the office of Prophet, Teacher, Elder.

We can see how Christ came and fulfilled and continues to fulfill His role as Mediator in the Office of Prophet.

He has come to save those who were lost.

He taught privately and publicly.

He taught by parables and instruction in the law and the prophets.

He taught through the inspiration of the Spirit to the apostles.

He continues to teach through the Word of God by calling men to the ministry.

He continues to teach through the effectual call of the gospel

  • Through repentance unto life
  • Through regeneration
  • Through justification
  • Through definitive sanctification
  • Through adoption
  • Through progressive sanctification
  • Through perseverance
  • And ultimately through glorification

As prophet, as The Prophet, Christ teaches the people of God....about God.

He executes the office of Prophet by revealing to us by His Word and Spirit the will of God for our salvation.