The Life of Jesus Christ
The Old Testament is filled with a number of prophecies. No prophecy is more important than God's plan to redeem mankind. Written hundreds of years before Christ came on this earth, Isaiah writes about what Christ will endure.
"But He was pierced for our offenses, crushed for our sins, upon Him was the chastisement that makes us whole, by His stripes we were healed." -Isaiah 53:5 NAB
"Though He was harshly treated, He submitted and opened not His mouth; like a lamb led to the slaughter or a sheep before the shearers, He was silent and opened not His mouth." Isaiah 53:7 NAB
"A grave was assigned Him among the wicked and a burial place with evildoer. Though He had done no wrong nor spoken any falsehoold. (But the Lord was pleased to crush Him in infirmity.) If he gives His life as an offering for sin, He shall see His descendants in a long life, and the will of the Lord shall be accomplished through Him. Because of His affliction, He shall see the light in fullness of days; through His suffering, my servant shall justify many, and their guilt He shall bear." -Isaiah 53:9-11 NAB
The parallels of Isaiah's description of the Messiah in chapter 53 to Christ's life and death on the cross are more than obvious. He was pierced with a spear. Beaten and flogged, Christ had striped wounds on His body. He did not speak a word against His accusers. He gave His life as an offering to save us from our sin. Long before Christ came, the prophets of the Old Testament foretold of His coming.
More than a Prophet
Some may say that Christ was a great prophet, but He was not the Messiah. Around the time of Christ's life, the Jewish people were living under the rule of the Roman Empire. At that time, the Jews hoped and prayed for the Messiah to come and save the day. Many of them expected the Messiah to come riding in on a white horse to lead the people to freedom. That's not exactly what happened.
Instead of riding in on a majestic, white horse, Christ came riding in on a donkey. Instead of leading the Jews to a military victory over the Romans, He told them to turn the other cheek. He was not what they were hoping for. If they had listened to His message, they would have realized that He was so much more. He did not bring them freedom from the Romans; He brought them freedom from their sins. He gave up His life so that they would no longer be slaves. Christ brought a New Covenant and a new chance for salvation.
Accepting Christ as Our Savior
If there is one essential tenet of our faith, it is that Christ is Our Savior. We can spend years studying the different aspects of the Old Testament. We can memorize a thousand scriptures to recite from memory. We can attend Mass on a weekly, or even daily basis, without fail. Yet, we can do all of those things, but without faith in Christ, we have missed the point.
When asked which is the greatest of the commandments, Christ responded,
"You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength." -Mark 12:30 NAB
What Christ wants from us, more than anything, is for us to love Him as much as He loves us. He gave everything for us. In return, He wants us to give our lives back to Him. We must give up our lives in order to save them. Are you ready to give your life to Christ?