Shalom! My name is Adam Pastor

Welcome to ADONI MESSIAH which means
"My Lord Messiah" -
a fitting epithet to who Jesus (or Yeshua) is!

Here, I attempt to present the Apostolic Truths according to the Scriptures, that there is
One GOD, the Father, namely, YAHWEH,
and One Lord, GOD's only begotten Son,
Yeshua the Messiah.

And that one day YAHWEH will send His Son back to Earth to inaugurate the Everlasting Kingdom of GOD


Thursday, December 13, 2007

Jesus as Lord and God by Robert Hach

Jesus as Lord and God

According to John 20:28, upon seeing, and hearing words from, the risen Jesus,
“Thomas answered him, ‘My Lord and my God.’”

The common assumption that the title “God” can only apply to the Creator (whose OT Hebrew name is YHWH) is without biblical support. The words in Hebrew (el and elohim) and Greek (theos) that are translated “God” (and “god” or “gods”) in the Bible are used by the biblical writers not only for the OT YHWH and the NT God and Father of Jesus but also, in an affirmative sense, for Moses (see Exo. 7: 1), the judges of Israel (see Psa. 82: 6 and John 10: 34), and the house of David (see Zech. 12: 8). That is to say, Moses, the judges (as well as the prophets), and the house of David (from which Jesus was descended) were YHWH’s delegated “gods,” chosen to be his spokespersons.

As Jesus explained, regarding why he was not blaspheming by calling himself “the Son of God,” God “called them gods to whom the word of God came” (John 10:35). In other words, when God’s inspired messengers spoke, their hearers heard not their own words but the word of God. They spoke on God’s behalf, as God’s representatives, to whom God, therefore, delegated the title “gods.”

The delegation of the title “gods” to God’s spokespersons is in keeping with the biblical principle of agency, according to which one’s agent is regarded as oneself. In any case in which one sends a representative to speak on one’s behalf, that representative is to be regarded as an extension of one’s own presence.

Agency is illustrated even today in the case of diplomats, who represent the leaders of their countries in dealings with other countries. Agency, then, is synonymous with mediation. One’s agent is the mediator between oneself and to whomever the agent is sent.

The biblical principle of agency explains a few apparent discrepancies in the NT writings. For example, one NT Gospel testifies that “the mother of the sons of Zebedee” (Matt. 20:20) requested that Jesus grant her sons positions of authority at his future coming with the kingdom of God, whereas another testifies that “James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came up to him” (Mark 10:35) and made the request. Insofar as their mother approached Jesus as their agent/mediator/representative, the discrepancy disappears in that the Jewish mode of expression would have allowed for either telling. Likewise, one NT Gospel testifies that “a centurion came forward to him” (Matt. 8:5), requesting that Jesus heal his servant; another testifies, “When the centurion heard about Jesus, he sent to him elders of the Jews, asking him to come and heal his servant” (Luke 7:3). The Jewish elders served as the centurion’s agent, in which case their words to Jesus were regarded as the words of the centurion himself. In both cases, the principle of agency was so familiar to and accepted by the original hearers and subsequent readers of the stories that either telling was considered truthful.

The same biblical principle of agency, when applied to the sending of God’s messengers to Israel and the nations, makes clear sense of what otherwise would appear to divide the biblical God into multiple persons.

In a negative sense, the Bible is also full of references to the “gods” of the nations (the same Hebrew and Greek words for “God,” no distinction being made in the original language regarding capitalization), gods whom Paul called “demons” (1 Cor. 10: 20-21). Likewise, the prince of demons, Satan, is called “the god [Greek, theos] of this age” (2 Cor. 4: 4). As such, the “other gods” (Exo. 20:3) that the Israelites were prohibited from worshiping by the first of the Ten Commandments were counterfeit agents, misrepresenting God by presenting false revelations of the will of God.

The word “God,” then, is not a name but a title, which the biblical writers applied not only to the Creator but also to his delegated spokespersons (of whom Jesus, as God’s Anointed One, was and is the ideal and ultimate agent), as well as to the fallen angels (Greek, angeloi, literally, messengers) who usurped the title by delivering false revelations of God. (The word “president” is comparable in the sense that it can be applied not only to the chief executive of the U.S., in which case it is typically capitalized as “the President,” but also to the heads, or “presidents,” of banks, universities and other organizations.)

When John’s Gospel summarizes its message and purpose, it makes clear what claim about Jesus it calls its readers to believe: “. . . these things [that is, his testimony to the miraculous signs performed by Jesus, culminating in God’s resurrection of Jesus from the dead] are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name” (John 20: 31).
When Thomas called Jesus, “My Lord and my God” (John 20:28), he meant no more nor less than that he now recognized Jesus as “the Christ, the Son of God” (John 20:31), the one whom God the Father had promised through the prophets and now sent to speak and act on God’s behalf, to fulfill God’s OT promises and, therefore, to speak God’s word in its fullness.
Thomas affirmed that Jesus was, and therefore continues to be, God’s ultimate and preeminent agent/mediator/representative, the one who, according to the principle of agency, is to be regarded as God’s self.

The distinction, then, must be made between oneself and one’s agent, who is to be regarded as oneself. Those who regard the agent as the one who sent the agent understand perfectly well that the agent is not literally the same as the sender. Nevertheless, they accord the agent the same treatment as they would accord the sender. (The NT report that Thomas and others “worshiped” Jesus is not, therefore, a persuasive argument that Jesus is, in Trinitarian terms notably absent from the NT writings, a “Person of the Godhead.”)

Responsible for so much confusion is the failure to understand the NT title “Christ” (Greek, christos) as equivalent to the OT title “Messiah” (Hebrew, meshiach). Both “Christ” and “Messiah” mean, in English, Anointed One: the one whom God anointed, or chose or delegated, to rule the kingdom of God as God’s agent upon its coming to earth at the end of the present age.

As “the Christ, the Son of God” (John 20:31), Jesus fulfilled the role of God’s preeminent agent prophesied for him in Psalm 2.

In Psa. 2:2, “the LORD” (the capital letters used by English versions of the Bible to signify that the Hebrew term is YHWH, the OT name of the Creator and the God of Israel) is aligned with “his anointed” (Hebrew, meshiach, or Messiah, the equivalent of the NT “Christ”).

In Psa. 2:6, YHWH refers to “his anointed” as “my King,” meaning that the Messiah is, by OT definition, YHWH’s anointed King, having been designated as such by YHWH, who is also called “the Lord” (the lower case letters signifying that the Hebrew term is not YHWH but adonai, always an OT title for YHWH).

In Psa. 2:7, the one referred to as YHWH’s “anointed . . . King” is now called “my Son” by YHWH, who prophesies the birth of the Messiah: “today I have begotten you.” The “Son of God” is not, according to this definitive Messianic Psalm, the Trinitarian “eternally begotten God the Son” but was “begotten” on a “today” that was, according to this prophetic Psalm, in Israel’s future.

Prophetic literature speaks proleptically, which means that it speaks of the future as if it were the present; whatever God has promised can be spoken of as a present reality because God has foreordained it and, thus, it will happen without fail. To speak of what God has promised as if it were a present reality is to confess biblical faith, which is “the reality of things hoped for” (Heb. 11:1).

Since God has promised to send his Messiah, God (and, therefore, God’s people) can speak of it as a present reality: “today I have begotten you.” (This sense of the Messiah’s begotten-ness accords with Luke 1: 35, which says that Jesus “will be called holy—the Son of God,” because his birth to Mary was the result of “the power of the Most High.”)

Psalm 2 aligns Adonai YHWH with “his anointed,” whom YHWH also calls “my King” (that is, the one whom YHWH has anointed, or delegated, to be the ruler of his kingdom) and “my Son.” So, the psalmist equates God’s “anointed” with God’s “King” and God’s “Son.” Nowhere, however, does this Psalm, which is definitive for the OT meaning of messiahship, suggest that the Messiah is God in the sense that YHWH is God. The Messiah (YHWH’s “anointed”) is clearly identified as God’s “anointed” agent, the one whom God chose to represent God, to mediate between God and the nations, and to eventually become God’s king of all nations.

Therefore, Psalm 2 is completely consistent with the biblical concept that the Messiah is “God” in a delegated sense, that is, in the sense of God’s perfect representative, or mediator, the one who exercises the authority of God on earth (which is a continual theme of John’s Gospel).

Finally, the OT text most quoted by the NT writers, Psa. 110:1, is altogether consistent with this analysis:
The LORD [Hebrew, YHWH] says to my Lord [Hebrew, adoni, an OT term which refers to human dignitaries, as opposed to adonai, the OT title for YHWH]: ‘Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool.’”

In this prophetic text (fulfilled, according to the NT writers, in Jesus), YHWH exalts this human “Lord” (adoni) to his “right hand,” and promises to bring all this Lord’s enemies into submission to him. If the Psalmist had intended to equate the lordship of YHWH with the lordship of the Messiah (assuming the wish to convey the Trinitarian concept of two Persons interacting within the same Being), he presumably would have used adonai, always an OT title for YHWH, rather than adoni, an OT title for human lords, such as kings and other dignitaries. Instead, the biblical writers clearly distinguish between the Lord (adonai) God, whose OT name is YHWH, and the Lord (adoni) Messiah, whose NT name is Jesus.

Psalm 110:1, then, refers to two Lords, one’s lordship being delegated to him by the other, whose supreme lordship is integral to his being. This is precisely the meaning of the words of the risen Jesus to his apostles: “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me” (Matt. 28:18), which is the fulfillment of the promise prophesied in Psalm 110:1.

Accordingly, the NT writers use Psalm 110:1 to identify Jesus as “Lord” and “God” in the delegated sense of God’s anointed spokesperson, the one who speaks and acts on God’s behalf, as God’s representative, or agent, “the one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus” (1 Tim. 2:5).
Every NT reference to Jesus as “mediator” assumes the biblical principle of agency, according to which one’s agent is regarded as oneself.

What human beings can know, and what believers in the NT gospel of God’s kingdom and grace do know, about the one true God is mediated through Jesus, who has been delegated the titles “Lord” and “God” by his God and Father.

A Christian can, with Thomas, confess Jesus as “my Lord and my God.” The question is whether or not the Christian making this confession means what Thomas meant.


Some helpful comments in regard to John 20:28 from Marianne Thompson's book The God of the Gospel of John :-
“In light of the rest of the Gospel of John, Thomas’s confession cannot mean that the risen Jesus is the only God. That epithet has already been used by Jesus himself in a context that clearly distinguishes the Father and the Son (17:3). Moreover, in a resurrection appearance to Mary Magdalene, Jesus had commanded her to go tell his disciples that he was ‘ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and to your God’ (20:17). It is highly unlikely that John intends the reader to understand that at some point the Father and Son are simply ‘collapsed’ into one, or that the one identified by Jesus as ‘my God’ somehow has become the risen Lord himself.” -- The God of the Gospel of John, p. 235
“When, in the climactic confession of the Gospel, Thomas addresses the risen Jesus as ‘My Lord and my God!’ this formulation stands as the summary and elaboration of the work and person of Jesus through the Gospel. The direct confession of the risen Lord as God stands alongside and interprets, but does not eclipse, the narrative that points to his dependence upon and authorization by the Father.” -- The God of the Gospel of John, p. 55

Taken from

The Faith of Jesus by Robert Hach

The Faith of Jesus

For the apostle Paul and the other New Testament (NT) writers, the Christian faith is synonymous with the faith of Jesus.

Jesus’ gospel, or "good news of the kingdom of God" (Luke 4:43), is the message that the historical Jesus believed. The NT Jesus embodied his faith as both messenger and message, persuading his disciples to believe what he believed about the kingdom of God and about himself as its anointed ruler ("Christ" being a transliteration into English of the Greek, Christos, meaning "Anointed One," that is, the one whom God anoints to rule God’s kingdom; its Hebrew equivalent is Messiah). Jesus’ faith in "the word" — in his having come, according to the Law and the Prophets, to fulfill God’s promise to bless all nations in Abraham’s messianic seed — led him to his death on the cross, from which God raised Jesus, whose death and resurrection completed the message that Paul identified with "the faith of Jesus."

Faith in or Faith of?

Several Pauline texts refer to the faith of Jesus but are typically, and unfortunately, rendered by English NT versions as "faith in" Jesus (Rom. 3:22, 26; Gal. 2:16 [twice] and 20; 3:22; Phil. 3:9). The rendering "faith in" points to the faith of Christians as the instrument God uses to justify them. But the rendering "faith of" points to the faith of Christ, that is, what the historical Jesus believed about himself and the kingdom of God, and what his faith led him to do, as God’s instrument of justification. So, what Jesus believed and what his faith led him to do — to proclaim the gospel of the kingdom of God and, as a result of its rejection, to die on the cross and be resurrected by his God — became both the instrument God uses to justify believers and the content of the NT revelation ("the word"). As such, the faith of Jesus is the object of NT Christian faith.

That the rendering "faith of" is preferable to "faith in" in these key Pauline texts (i.e., Rom. 3:22, 26; Gal. 2:16, 20; 3:22; Phil. 3:9) can be confirmed by comparing them with Paul’s reference to "the faith of Abraham" (Rom. 4:16), in which precisely the same original-language construction is used: for example, pisteos Jesou (Rom. 3:26) and pisteos Abraau (Rom. 4:16). (Any NT interlinear translation can be used to make these comparisons.) The point of Paul’s paralleling the faiths of Jesus and Abraham is to identify Jesus as the true heir of the Abrahamic faith and, therefore, as the true recipient of God’s Abrahamic promise to bless all nations in Abraham’s "seed" (Gal. 3:16; see also Gen. 12:1-3; 15:1-6; 18:18).

The rendering of Paul’s references to Jesus’ faith as "faith in" rather than "faith of" obscures Paul’s parallel between Jesus and Abraham. Abraham "did not waver in unbelief regarding the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, being fully persuaded that God was able to do what he had promised" (Rom. 4:20-21). Just so, Jesus’ faith — his persuasion regarding God’s promise — that God would raise his Anointed One from the dead and exalt him to God’s right hand in God’s coming kingdom — according to Paul, "to confirm the promises given to the patriarchs, and in order that the Gentiles [the nations] might glorify God for his mercy" (Rom. 15:8-9) — led Jesus to his death on the cross and, therefore, to his resurrection. This is Paul’s "gospel," which God "promised beforehand through his prophets in the holy Scriptures . . ." (Rom. 1:2), just as "the Scripture, forseeing that God would justify the Gentiles [Greek, ethnos: the nations] by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, ‘In you shall all the nations be blessed’" (Gal. 3:8).

According to Paul, then, "the righteousness of God" (and, therefore, the hope of salvation) comes to Christians "through the faith of Jesus Christ [dia pisteos Jesou Christou] to all who believe" (Rom. 3:22). And so, Paul’s words clarify that Jesus’ faith is the instrument God uses, whenever the NT gospel is heard, to impart God’s righteousness to believing hearts.

This means that Christians — that is, believers in the NT gospel — are saved not because of their own faith but because of the faith of Jesus, as it is revealed in the NT gospel: ". . . we believed in Christ Jesus in order that we might be justified by the faith of Christ [ek pisteos Christou] and not by works of law [ek ergon nomou], because by works of law no flesh will be justified" (Gal. 2:16).

Two Approaches to Righteousness

Paul’s contrast is between two approaches to justification: "faith," on one hand, and "works," on the other. His contrast, however, is not between Christians whose "faith" involves trusting God for their righteousness, on one hand, and Christians, or Jews, who try to earn their righteousness through "works," on the other. Paul’s contrast is, instead, between "the faith of Christ" as God’s instrument of justification, on one hand, and "works of law" as the false instrument of justification into which the Mosaic law had been turned by first-century Pharisaic Judaism, on the other.

The error of Pharisaic Judaism was to misconstrue the Mosaic law as a foundational and, therefore, permanent, element in God’s purpose for Israel and the nations. This error led to the first-century Jewish belief that God would fulfill his Abrahamic promise to bless all nations through the imposition of the Mosaic law on the nations by a restored Davidic dynasty, whose Messiah would lead the Jewish nation in conquest over the Romans and then the rest of the world. This could only occur, it was believed, when the Jewish nation was sufficiently observant of the Mosaic law. Thus, the first-century "tradition of the elders" (Matt. 15:2) was designed to enforce a kind of observance of the "letter" of the law that, in its earnest attempt at self-justification, repressed the "spirit" of the law (which had always been faith in God’s Abrahamic promise). God’s purpose, then (so it was believed), was to use the Mosaic law to fulfill his Abrahamic promise, the fulfillment, therefore, being the just reward for his people’s "works of law." The Jewish nation’s observance, therefore, of the religious tradition into which the Mosaic law had been turned by Pharisaic Judaism — Paul’s phrase for this observance being "works of law" — was believed to be God’s instrument for justifying his people.

Paul’s correction of this error consisted in pointing out that the Mosaic law, rather than being a foundational and permanent element in God’s purpose, was instead structural and temporary.

The Mosaic law was structural in that it was built on the foundation of God’s Abrahamic promise, which preceded the giving of the law by "430 years" (Gal. 3:17). For what purpose? "It was added" — being a structural addition to the foundation of the Abrahamic promise — "because of transgressions" (Gal. 3:19a). The Mosaic law was given — in fulfillment of God’s promise to make of Abraham a great nation — to impart to Israel, through the nation’s "transgressions" of the ten commandments, an understanding of its alienation from its God: "For by works of law shall no flesh be justified before him, since through the law comes knowledge of sin" (Rom. 3:20; see also Rom. 7:7-25). The "knowledge of sin" came to faithful Israelites in light of the nation’s habitual failure to obey the first commandment: "You shall have no other gods before me" (Exo. 20:3; Deut. 5:7), its idolatry resulting in its inability to faithfully obey the other commandments.

And the Mosaic law was temporary in that it "was added . . . until the seed should come to whom the promise had been made" (Gal. 3:19b), namely, Jesus.

From Old Covenant to New Covenant

According to Paul, then, the Mosaic law lasted from Moses to Messiah, the true Abrahamic "seed," in and through whom all of Abraham’s descendents, both Jews and Gentiles, would enjoy the promised blessing to all nations.

God fulfilled his Abrahamic promise according to his own timetable — "when the fullness of time had come" (Gal. 4:4) — by sending his Anointed One to display a perfect faith in God’s Abrahamic promise. In so doing, God transformed the old covenant between God and one nation (Israel) into a new covenant between God and all nations (both Jews and Gentiles). The transition between the old and new covenants was the transition not only from a national to an international covenant between God and humanity but also from a legal to a spiritual covenant.

The Mosaic law was "the letter" (Rom. 7:6; 2 Cor. 3:6), which could only condemn God’s people because it formed, by definition as a legal system, a record of their transgressions. As the writer of Hebrews says, "under law . . . without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness" (Heb. 9:22), because no legal system can forgive (in that forgiveness, by definition, is freely extended: the cancellation of an unpaid debt). God’s forgiveness could only be ceremonially, and therefore imperfectly, experienced under law, and this required that the ongoing and unending condemnation of the law be mitigated by "the shedding of blood." The animal sacrifices of the Mosaic law served the purpose of conveying to Israel a limited, ceremonial awareness of God’s forgiveness while the nation was acquiring "the knowledge of sin" through its transgressions of the ten commandments.

The function of the ongoing sacrifices required by the Mosaic law was not to "perfect those who draw near" (Heb. 10:1) with an assurance of God’s forgiveness but, instead, to serve as "a reminder of sin every year" (Heb. 10:3). While it is the nature of love (and, therefore, of God) to freely forgive, God’s people could not experience the assurance of God’s forgiveness until the Mosaic law, as the instrument through which God governed his old-covenant people, came to an end. (Though the Mosaic law no longer governs God’s people, it continues, along with "the Prophets," to "bear witness to" God’s righteousness [Rom. 3:21] by telling the story of God’s faithfulness to his Abrahamic promise.)

Jesus’ faith in God’s promise led him to the cross, which brought the old covenant of "the letter" to an end (see Gal. 3:13-14; Eph. 2:14-16; Col. 2:13-14). What the blood of animals could do only imperfectly and temporarily — offer to believing hearts the experience of God’s forgiveness — the blood of Jesus has done both perfectly and permanently. And having brought to an end the rule of "the letter" at the cross, God raised Jesus from the dead, entering into a new covenant of "the spirit" with all of all nations who believe the NT gospel and, thereby, identify themselves with the faith of Jesus.

Jesus’ faith in "the word" of promise instilled on his mind and in his heart the love of his God, making him the embodiment of the new covenant: "For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the Lord: I will put my laws into their minds, and write them on their hearts, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people" (Heb. 8:10; Jer. 31:33). The new-covenant law of God would no longer be "letter" but now "spirit," no longer a matter of the coercive power of a legal system but now the persuasive power of a spiritual (i.e., God-breathed) message: the NT gospel of Jesus and the kingdom of God. Through the faith of Jesus, then, God’s Spirit (Greek, pneuma, literally, breath, the metaphorical extension of God’s presence and power from heaven to earth in the literal form of the faith of Jesus) would write God’s law of love on believing hearts, empowering God’s people to love God and to love others as God has loved one and all, according to the NT faith of Jesus.

Another Jesus?

Perhaps the major problem with the rendering "faith in" rather than "faith of" is that it suggests that the Christian’s faith in Jesus was Paul’s central concern rather than what Jesus himself believed and, therefore, called his disciples to believe about the kingdom of God, that is, about God’s original and international purpose, and about Jesus as the one whom God anointed to fulfill his purpose and promise. For Paul, the critical question was whether the faith of the Christians to whom he wrote continued to correspond to the faith of the "Christ" Paul had proclaimed to them.

Paul warned his readers about "someone [who] proclaims another Jesus than the one we proclaimed," which would lead them to "receive a different spirit from the one you received [and] accept a different gospel from the one you accepted" (2 Cor. 11:4). For Paul, "Jesus" and "spirit" and "gospel" were equivalent terms, each being synonymous with the faith of the historical Jesus, which Paul believed himself to have proclaimed and his readers to have believed when he had been in their presence.

What if Christians have been led to place their faith in a "Jesus" other than the risen Jesus whose "spirit" revealed his "gospel" to Paul? What if the "Christ" of ecclesiastical Christianity, the "Christ" whom it reinvented as "God the Son" in the Church councils of the fourth and fifth centuries, the "Christ" who rules "the Church" through its clergy and reveals "Himself" to its members through its rituals is "another Jesus than the one [Paul] proclaimed"?

Unlike Paul, the evangelical branch of ecclesiastical Christianity has nothing to say about the "faith of" its Jesus because as "God the Son" he had no need for faith when he was in the flesh. All that the evangelical Christ proclaimed is presumed to have come not from his faith in "the word" God revealed to him through the Hebrew scriptures and through "the Spirit" but from the memory of his "preexistent" presence in "eternity past" as "God the Son" with God the Father. (This is a gnostic concept that has been read into John’s Gospel and, thereby, puts John’s testimony about a supposedly "divine" Jesus in conflict with the testimony of the three synoptic Gospels, each of which present — as, in truth, does John’s Gospel — a fully human Jesus.) The question is whether the apostolic "Son of God" is equivalent to the post-apostolic "God the Son"; if not, the churches of ecclesiastical Christianity have been led to worship "another Jesus."

Jesus believed what all the biblical messengers of God who preceded him believed: God’s Abrahamic promise. God promised Abraham to give him a son, through whom God promised to make of him a great nation, through which God promised to bless all nations (see Gen. 12:1-3; 15:1-6; 18:18). Of course, like all his fellow Jews, Jesus believed that God had already fulfilled the promise of the son, in the form of Isaac, and the promise of the nation, in the form of Israel (which is the story the OT writers tell). But Jesus also believed what the majority of his fellow Jews refused to believe — that he himself had come to set in motion the fulfillment of the Abrahamic promise of international blessing by means of his proclamation of the kingdom of God, which led to his crucifixion for sins, resurrection from the dead, and exaltation to the right hand of God in God’s eschatological kingdom.

The Faith of Jesus and Christian Faith

Jesus revealed his faith, then, to his disciples, and to the multitudes, through his proclamation of the kingdom of God, that the kingdom was "at hand," on the horizon, coming to bring the righteousness of faith to Israel and the rest of the nations. His faith was his understanding and persuasion (i.e., his trust in God’s promise) regarding his having come to fulfill the Abrahamic promise of international blessing, which would begin with the restoration of Israel to covenant faithfulness, in the form of his band of Jewish disciples and, eventually, in the form of the Jewish and Gentile Christian community (see Romans 11). And of this faith Jesus sought to persuade his fellow Jews, whom he called to believe his "good news of the kingdom of God" (Luke 4:43).

Jesus’ faith — his proclamation of the kingdom of God — constituted his service to the Jewish people, and through them to all nations: "For I tell you that Christ became a servant to the circumcised to show God’s truthfulness, in order to confirm the promises given to the patriarchs, and in order that the Gentiles [that is, the nations] might glorify God for his mercy" (Rom. 15:8-9). As Jesus himself put it, "For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many" (Mark 10:45). And so, Jesus, "the pioneer and perfector of faith . . . for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising its shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God" (Heb. 12:2). Which is to say that Jesus died because of his faith, that is, because he was persuaded that God would raise his Anointed One from the dead in keeping with his Abrahamic promise to bless all nations with everlasting life in the kingdom of God on a renewed earth.

The NT faith of Jesus, then, encompasses his proclamation of the kingdom of God, his crucifixion for sins, his resurrection from the dead, and his exaltation to the right hand of God in the coming kingdom, all of which identify Jesus as God’s Anointed One. Accordingly, the NT gospel is the call to believe what Jesus believed, and so, to live in hope of resurrection to everlasting life in the coming kingdom of God and in love for oneself and others, just as God demonstrates his love for one and all in the sacrificial death to which Jesus was led by his faith in the promise of God.

Taken from: