Who Is Yeshua?
Some people claim Yeshua is a great teacher. Others think He's a prophet. Some dismiss him as a liar or even a madman. Millions hail Him as Messiah and Lord. Whatever people think of Him, nobody can deny that He stands at the very crux of human history and that His life and teachings have dramatically changed the lives of many people.
The Bible record shows that Yeshua was born to a virgin, lived a sinless life, taught throughout Israel, was crucified, and was then raised from the dead three days after His crucifixion. The Bible reports that more than 500 people saw Yeshua alive after His miraculous resurrection. How could a mere man have lived such a life? The miracles Yeshua performed, the wisdom of His teaching, His death on the cross, His resurrection, and His ascent to heaven all demonstrate that He was who He claimed to be.
Hundreds of years before Yeshua was born, Hebrew prophets
predicted His coming. The Tanak ("Old Testament") was written by many people over a period of 1,500 years. It contains more than 300 prophecies about the Messiah that God promised. All of these prophecies came true, including His miraculous birth, His sinless life, His many miracles, and His death and resurrection.
By His own account, Yeshua claimed He had the power to forgive sin, to cast out demons, and to determine people's eternal destiny. He backed up those claims with miraculous deeds of power and declared that He and God were one. This so angered the religious and political leaders of His day that they had Him crucified. After His death, He was buried in a borrowed grave. Three days later, He rose from the dead.
More than anything else, the resurrection of Yeshua makes Him unique. In fact, the strength and validity of the messianic community that follows Him hinges on Yeshua's resurrection. If His resurrection never took place, then the faith of His followers is based on a lie and people have no true hope for life after they die. But if it is true, then to ignore Yeshua and the love, forgiveness, and new life He offers would be a big mistake.
Over the centuries, most of the great scholars who have thoroughly researched the life and ministry of Yeshua, including His resurrection, have come to believe in Him and in the biblical record.
As mentioned earlier, the Old Testament was written hundreds of years before Yeshua was born. It was completed in 450 BC, and many of the prophecies that were made about Messiah Yeshua were done so in astonishing detail.
For example, the Tanak indicated that Yeshua would be betrayed by someone He trusted: "Even my close friend whom I trusted, he who has shared my bread, has lifted up his heel against Me." (Psalm 41:9) The Apostolic writings ("New Testament"), that records Yeshua's life and resurrection, reveals that one of the 12 people Yeshua chose to be part of His inner circle betrayed Him: "Then Judas Iscariot, one of the Twelve, went to the chief priests to betray Yeshua to them." (Mark 14:19)
More than 300 prophecies like this were made in the Tanak and then fulfilled through Yeshua's life, death, and resurrection. The chances of one person fulfilling a mere 8 of these prophecies are 1 in 100,000,000,000,000,000. For one person to fulfill 48 of these prophecies, the number becomes staggering -- 1 chance in 10 to the 157th power (1 with 157 zeros after it). Add to that the 250 other prophecies and it becomes impossible for any other person except Yeshua to ever fit that particular sequence of time and events.
- CARM (paraphrased)