The Way of Salvation in the Gospels
Outline: Script taken almost entirely from Scripture, all references cited.Written for Muslims. Covers birth of Jesus in detail, His messiahship, calming the storm, loaves and fishes, ability to drive out demons, teaching on loving God and neighbor, healing of paralytic, power to forgive sins, Pharisee & tax collector, Prodigal Son, explanation of Jesus as Son of God, Jesus' crucifixion, death, and burial, & resurrection, meeting disciples on road to Emmaus, Christ's ascension, His promise to return, exhortation to obey God's Word.
|Theme:||Saviour of Sinful Men; Prophecy, fulfillment of; Life of Christ; Salvation; Forgiveness; Faith, trust, believe in Jesus; Humility|
Scripts are basic guidelines for translation and recording into other languages. They should be adapted as necessary to make them understandable and relevant for each different culture and language. Some terms and concepts used may need more explanation or even be replaced or omitted completely.
Greetings my friends. We all know about the Holy Injil. But what does it say? Let me read to you some important passages of it. It is written:
_Mark 1:15_ "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel." Thus spoke Jesus when He was on earth some 2,000 years ago. (In the Holy Injil, Jesus is called the "Messiah" which means the "Anointed One," that is anointed by God as a special and unique Messenger). His life story has been told by eyewitnesses and contemporaries who were followers of God. We can read it in the Holy Injil. It began with a miraculous birth. Listen.
_Matthew 1:18_ "This was how the birth of Jesus Christ took place. His mother Mary was engaged to Joseph, but before they were married, she found out that she was going to have a baby by the Holy Spirit."
_Luke 1:30-31_ "And the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary; for you have found favour with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb, and bear a son, and you shall name Him Jesus."
_Luke 1:34-35_ "And Mary said to the angel, "How can this be, since I am a virgin?" And the angel answered and said to her, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; and for that reason the holy offspring shall be called the Son of God."
_Luke 1:37-38_ "For nothing will be impossible with God." And Mary said, "Behold, the bondslave of the Lord; be it done to me according to your word." And the angel departed from her."
_Matthew 1:19-25_ "Joseph was a man who always did what was right but he did not want to disgrace Mary publicly; so he made plans to break the engagement privately. While he was thinking about this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, "Joseph, descendant of David, do not be afraid to take Mary to be your wife. For it is by the Holy Spirit that she has conceived. She will have a son, and you will name him Jesus - because he will save his people from their sins." Now all this happened in order to make come true what the Lord had said through the prophet, "A virgin will become pregnant and have a son, and he will be called Immanuel" (which means, "God is with us"). So when Joseph woke up, he married Mary, as the angel of the Lord had told him to. But he had no sexual relations with her before she gave birth to her son."
_Luke 2:1-20_ "At that time Emperor Augustus ordered a census to be taken throughout the Roman Empire. When this first census took place, Quirinius was the governor of Syria. Everyone, then, went to register himself, each to his own home town. Joseph went from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to the town of Bethlehem in Judea, the birthplace of King David. Joseph went there because he was a descendant of David. He went to register with Mary, who was promised in marriage to him. She was pregnant, and while they were in Bethlehem, the time came for her to have her baby. She gave birth to her first son, wrapped him in clothes and laid him in a manger as there was no room for them to stay at the inn. There were some shepherds in that part of the country who were spending the night in the fields, taking care of their flocks. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone over them. They were terribly afraid, but the angel said to them, "Don't be afraid! I am here with good news for you, which will bring great joy to all the people. This very day in David's town your Saviour was born - Christ the Lord! And this is what will prove it to you: You will find a baby wrapped in clothes and lying in a manger." Suddenly a great army of heaven's angels appeared with the angel, singing praises to God: "Glory to God in the highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom he is pleased!" When the angels went away from them back into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, "Let's go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us." So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph and saw the baby lying in the manger. When the shepherds saw him, they told them what the angel had said about the child. All who heard it were filled with wonder at what the shepherds told them. Mary remembered all these things, and thought deeply about them. The shepherds went back, singing praises to God for all they had heard and seen; it had been just as the angel had told them."
Jesus the Messiah grew up like any ordinary child. We don't know much about His childhood except that God's grace was upon Him. It was only at the age of thirty that He made Himself known publicly as the One who was sent by God to do a special work on earth. One day He went to the temple.
_Luke 4:17-18_ "And the book of the prophet Isaiah was handed to Him. And He opened the book, and found the place where it was written, "The Spirit of the Lord is upon, because He has chosen me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set free the oppressed and announce that the time has come when the Lord will save His people." /f _Luke 4:21_ "And He began to say to them, "Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing."
In this passage Jesus declares that He is the Messiah who was foretold by the Prophet Isaiah. He was the anointed Messenger of God to bring good news to the poor (to all those who were spiritually poor because they did not know God), to the blind (to all those who were like blind people because they did not know God), to the prisoners (to all those who were captives of Satan's power) and to the oppressed (to all those who were oppressed by the weight of their sins). Because Jesus the Messiah came from God, He had great power and performed many miracles as signs of God's love and care for the human race. For instance, He calmed a storm.
_Luke 8:22-25_ "One day Jesus got into a boat with His disciples and said to them, "Let us go across to the other side of the lake." So they started out. As they were sailing, Jesus fell asleep. Suddenly a strong wind blew down on the lake, and the boat began to fill with water, so that they were all in great danger. The disciples went to Jesus and woke Him up, saying, "Master, Master! We are about to die!" Jesus got up and gave an order to the wind and to the stormy water; they quieted down, and there was a great calm. Then He said to the disciples, "Where is your faith?" But they were amazed and afraid, and said to one another, "Who is this man? He gives orders to the winds and waves, and they obey Him!"
One time, He also fed 5,000 men without counting the women and the children.
_Luke 9:10-17_ "The apostles came back and told Jesus everything they had done. He took them with him, and they went off by themselves to a town named Bethsaida. When the crowds heard about it, they followed Him. He welcomed them, spoke to them about the Kingdom of God, and healed those who needed it.
When the sun was beginning to set, the twelve disciples came to Him and said, "Send the people away so that they can go to the villages and farms around here and find food and lodging, because this is a lonely place." But Jesus said to them, "You yourselves give them something to eat." They answered, "All we have are five loaves and two fish. Do you want us to go and buy food for this whole crowd?" (There were about five thousand men there). Jesus said to His disciples, "Make the people sit down in groups of about fifty each." After the disciples had done so, Jesus took the five loaves and two fish, looked up to heaven, thanked God for them, broke them, and gave them to the disciples to distribute to the people. They all ate and had enough, and the disciples took up twelve baskets of what was left over."
He was also able to heal the sick and even to drive evil spirits out of people.
_Luke 4:31-37_ "Then Jesus went to Capernaum, a town in Galilee, where He taught the people on the Sabbath. They were all amazed at the way He taught, because He spoke with authority. In the synagogue was a man who had the spirit of an evil demon in him; he screamed out in a loud voice, "Ah! What do you want with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Are you here to destroy us? I know who you are: You are God's holy messenger!" Jesus ordered the spirit, "Be quiet and come out of the man!" The demon threw the man down in front of them and went out of him without doing him any harm. The people were all amazed and said to one another, "What kind of words are these? With authority and power this man gives orders to the evil spirits, and they come out!" And the report about Jesus spread everywhere in that region."
While on earth, Jesus taught many things. For instance He taught that it was not enough to keep all the commandments and obey all the rules if we do not really love God and the people around us. He said:
_Matthew 22:37-40_ "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind." This is the greatest and the most important commandment. The second most important commandment is like it: "Love your neighbour as you love yourself." The whole law of Moses and the teachings of the prophets depend on these two commandments."
_Matthew 5:21-24_ "You have hard that people were told in the past, "Do not commit murder; anyone who does will be brought to trial." But now I tell you: whoever is angry with his brother will be brought to trial, whoever calls his brother "You good-for-nothing!" will be brought before the Council, and whoever calls his brother a worthless fool will be in danger of going to the fire of hell. So if you are about to offer your gift to God at the altar and there you remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar, go at once and make peace with your brother, and then come back and offer your gift to God."
_Matthew 5:43-45_ "You have heard that it was said, "Love your friends, hate your enemies." But now I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may become the sons of your Father in heaven. For He makes His sun to shine on bad and good people alike, and gives rain to those who do good and to those who do evil."
One of the most surprising things Jesus the Messiah taught was that He was able to forgive sins.
_Luke 5:17-26_ "One day when Jesus was teaching, some Pharisees and teachers of the Law were sitting there who had come from every town in Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem. The power of the Lord was present for Jesus to heal the sick. Some men came carrying a paralysed man on a bed, and they tried to carry him into the house and put him in front of Jesus. Because of the crowd, however, they could find no way to take him in. So they carried him up on the roof, made an opening in the tiles, and let him down on his bed into the middle of the group in front of Jesus. When Jesus saw how much faith they had, He said to the man, "Your sins are forgiven, my friend." The teachers of the Law and the Pharisees began to say to themselves, "Who is this man who speaks such blasphemy! God is the only one who can forgive sins!" Jesus knew their thoughts and said to them, "Why do you think such things? Is it easier to say, "Your sins are forgiven" or to say, "Get up and walk"? I will prove to you, then, that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins." So He said to the paralysed man, "I tell you, get up, pick up your bed, and go home!" At once the man got up in front of them all, took the bed he had been lying on, and went home, praising God. They were all completely amazed! Full of fear, they praised God, saying, "What marvellous things we have seen today!"
Who can have his sins forgiven? Jesus the Messiah taught that without humility and repentance before God no one can be forgiven by God.
_Luke 18:9-14_ "Jesus also told this parable to people who were sure of their own goodness and despised everybody else. "Once there were two men who went up to the Temple to pray: one was a Pharisee, the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood apart by himself and prayed, "I thank you, God, that I am not greedy, dishonest, or an adulterer, like everybody else. I thank you that I am not like that tax collector over there. I fast two days a week, and I give you one tenth of all my income. But the tax collector stood at a distance and would not even raise his face to heaven, but beat on his breast and said, "God, have pity on me, a sinner!" "I tell you," said Jesus, "the tax collector, and not the Pharisee, was in the right with God when he went home. For everyone who makes himself great will be humbled, and everyone who humbles himself will be made great."
How does God forgive? Jesus the Messiah told a parable which is a story which helps us understand a certain truth. This parable gives a picture of the love and compassion of God who longs for all men and women to return to Him and be welcomed as sons and daughters.
_Luke 15:11-24_ "Jesus went on to say, "There was once a man who had two sons. The younger one said to him, "Father, give me my share of the property now." So the man divided his property between his two sons. After a few days the younger son sold his part of the property and left home with the money. He went to a country far away, where he wasted his money in reckless living. He spent everything he had. Then a severe famine spread over that country, and he was left without a thing. So he went to work for one of the citizens of that country, who sent him out to his farm to take care of the pigs. He wished he could fill himself with the bean pods the pigs ate, but no one gave him anything to eat. At last he came to his senses and said, "All my father's hired workers have more than they can eat, and here I am about to starve! I will get up and go to my father and say, "Father, I have sinned against God and against you. I am no longer fit to be called your son; treat me as one of your hired workers." So he got up and started back to his father. He was still a long way from when his father saw him; his heart was filled with pity, and he ran, threw his arms around his son, and kissed him. "Father," the son said, "I have sinned against God and against you. I am no longer fit to be called your son." But the father called to his servants. "Hurry!" he said. "Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and shoes on his feet. Then go and get the prize calf and kill it, and let us celebrate with a feast! For this son of mine was dead, but now he is alive; he was lost, but now he has been found." And so the feasting began."
Jesus the Messiah added: _Luke 15:7_ "There will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents, than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance."
_Luke 5:31-32_ "It is not those who are well who need a physician, but those who are sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance."
_Matthew 11:28_ "Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest."
_John 6:37_ "...the one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out."
_John 6:38_ "For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent me."
_John 6:40_ "For this is the will of My Father, that everyone who beholds the Son and believes in Him, may have eternal life; and I Myself will raise him up on the last day."
Jesus the Messiah is the Son of God not in a physical but spiritual sense.
One day someone asked a friend the following question, "Who do you think existed first: God, His Spirit or His Word?" The friend answered, "Certainly God; as nothing could have existed before Him." The man then said, "If God was, at any time, without Spirit or without Word, which means a dead or a dumb God, how can He be God at all?" After a while, the friend answered, "You are right. God cannot be dead without Spirit, or dumb without Word for in Him, life and perfection are personified. God's Spirit and Word were with Him from the very beginning, and will be with Him always. God cannot be divided into God, Word and Spirit. He is ONE God." Before He came to earth, Jesus the Messiah was in God's presence. He was one with God. He is called the Word of God.
_John 1:1-3_ "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being by Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being."
_John 1:14_ "And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth."
_John 1:18_ "No man has seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has explained Him."
Jesus the Messiah is God's expression of Love to men.
_John 3:16_ "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life."
Jesus the Messiah is also called the Light of God.
_John 1:4_ "In Him was Life, and the Life was the Light of men."
_John 1:9_ "There was the true light which, coming into the world, enlightens every man."
_John 8:12_ "Jesus said, "I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life."
Jesus the Messiah was also called the Lamb of God.
_John 10:11_ "I am the good shepherd; the good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep."_John 10:17-18_ "For this reason the Father loves Me, because I lay down My life that I may take it again. No one has taken it away from Me, but I lay it down on my own initiative. I have authority to take it up again. This commandment I received from My Father."
The time came when Jesus the Messiah put these words into practice. He who only did good deeds and never committed sin, even once, was condemned to death by sinful men who refused to repent from their evil ways.
_Luke 23:32-49_ "Two other men, both of them criminals, were also led out to be put to death with Jesus. When they came to the place called "The Skull" they crucified Jesus there, and the two criminals, one on his right and the other on his left. Jesus said, "Forgive them, Father! They don't know what they are doing." They divided his clothes among themselves by throwing dice.
The people stood there watching while the Jewish leaders made fun of Him: "He saved others; let him save himself if he is the Messiah whom God has chosen!" The soldiers also made fun of him: they came up to him and offered him cheap wine, and said, "Save yourself if you are the king of the Jews!" Above him were written these words: "This is the King of the Jews." One of the criminals hanging there hurled insults at him: "Aren't you the Messiah? Save yourself and us!" The other one however, rebuked him, saying, "Don't you fear God? You received the same sentence he did. Ours however, is only right, because we are getting what we deserve for what we did; but he has done no wrong." And he said to Jesus, "Remember me, Jesus, when you come as King!" Jesus said to him, "I promise you that today you will be with me in Paradise." It was about twelve o'clock when the sun stopped shining and darkness covered the whole country until three o'clock and the curtain hanging in the Temple was torn in two. Jesus cried out in a loud voice, "Father! In your hands I place my spirit!" He said this and died. The army officer saw what had happened, and he praised God, saying, "Certainly he was a good man!" When the people who had gathered there to watch the spectacle saw what happened, they all went back home beating their breasts. All those who knew Jesus personally, including the women who had followed him from Galilee, stood of at a distance to see these things."
Jesus really died. Many people saw Him dead. After He died, He was taken down from the cross and placed in a tomb. In the Holy Injil, it is written:
_Luke 23:50-56_ "There was a man named Joseph, from Arimathea, a town in Judea. He was a good and honourable man, and waited for the coming of the Kingdom of God. Although a member of the Council, he had not agreed with their decision and action. He went into the presence of Pilate (the Roman Governor) and asked for the body of Jesus. Then he took the body down, wrapped it in a linen sheet, and placed it in a tomb which had been dug out of the rock - a tomb which had never been used. It was Friday, and the Sabbath was about to begin. The women who had followed Jesus from Galilee went with Joseph and saw the tomb and how Jesus' body was laid in it. Then they went back home and prepared the spices and ointments for his body. On the Sabbath they rested, as the Law commanded." Now three days after Jesus died and was buried, He was no longer in the tomb where He was laid. He was risen from the dead. In the Holy Injil we read:
_Luke 24:1-12_ "Very early the first day of the week the women went to the tomb, carrying the spices they had prepared. They found the stone rolled away from the entrance to the tomb, so they went on in; but they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. They stood there puzzled about this, when suddenly two men in bright shining clothes stood by them. Full of fear, the women bowed down to the ground, as the men said to them: "Why are you looking among the dead for one who is alive? He is not here; he has risen. Remember what He said to you while He was in Galilee: "The Son of Man must be handed over to sinful men, be nailed to the cross and be raised to life on the third day." Then the women remembered His words, returned from the tomb, and told all these things to the eleven disciples and all the rest. The women were Mary Magdalene, Joanna, and Mary the mother of James; they and the other women with them told these things to the apostles. But the apostles thought that what the women said was nonsense, and did not believe them. But Peter got up and ran to the tomb; he bent down and saw the grave clothes and nothing else. Then he went back home amazed at what had happened."
Jesus the Messiah is risen indeed. Before going back to heaven, He appeared to many of His disciples during 40 days. In the Holy Injil it is written:
_Luke 24:13-47_ "On that same day two of them were going to a village named Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem, and they were talking to each other about all the things that had happened. As they talked and discussed, Jesus Himself drew near and walked along with them; they saw Him, but somehow did not recognise Him. Jesus said to them, "What are you talking about to each other, as you walk along?" And they stood still, with sad faces. One of them, named Cleopas, asked Him, "Are you the only man living in Jerusalem who does not know what has been happening there these last few days?" "What things?" He asked. "The things that happened to Jesus of Nazareth," they answered. "This man was a prophet, and was considered by God and by all the people to be powerful in everything He said and did. Our chief priests and rulers handed him over to be sentenced to death, and they nailed Him to the cross. And we had hoped that He would be the one who was going to redeem Israel! Besides all that, this is now the third day since it happened. Some of the women of our group surprised us; they went at dawn to the tomb, but could not find His body. They came back saying they had seen a vision of angels who told them that He is alive. Some of our group went to the tomb and found it exactly as the women had said, but they did not see Him." Then Jesus said to them: "How foolish you are, how slow you are to believe everything the prophets said! Was it not necessary for the Messiah to suffer these things and then to enter His glory?" And Jesus explained to them what was said about Him in all the Scriptures, beginning with the books of Moses and the writings of all the prophets. They came near the village to which they were going, and Jesus acted as if He were going farther; but they held him back, saying, "Stay with us; the day is almost over and it is getting dark." So He went in to stay with them. He sat at the table with them, took the bread and gave it to them. Their eyes were opened and they recognised Him; but He disappeared from their sight. They said to each other, "Wasn't it like a fire burning in us when He talked to us on the road and explained the Scriptures to us?" They got up at once and went back to Jerusalem, where they found the eleven disciples gathered together with the others and saying, "The Lord is risen indeed! Simon has seen Him!" The two then explained to them what had happened on the road, and how they had recognised the Lord when He broke the bread. While they were telling them this, suddenly the Lord Himself stood among them and said to them, "Peace be with you." Full of fear and terror, they thought that they were seeing a ghost. But He said to them: "Why are you troubled? Why are these doubts coming up in your minds? Look at my hands and my feet and see that it is I myself. Feel me, and you will see, for a ghost doesn't have flesh and bones, as you can see I have." He said this and showed them His hands and His feet. They still could not believe, they were so full of joy and wonder; so He asked them, "Do you have anything to eat here?" They gave Him a piece of cooked fish, which He took and ate before them. Then He said to them: "These are the very things I told you while I was still with you: everything written about me in the law of Moses, the writings of the prophets, and the Psalms had to come true." Then He opened their minds to understand the Scriptures, and said to them: "This is what is written: that the Messiah must suffer and be raised from death on the third day, and that in His name the message about repentance and the forgiveness of sins must be preached to all nations."
_Luke 24:50-51_ "And He led them out as far as Bethany, and He lifted up His hands and blessed them. And it came about that while He was blessing them, he parted from them."
Jesus is in heaven today. But some day, he will come back from heaven.
While He was still on earth He said: _Matthew 24:25_ "Behold I have told you in advance."
_Matthew 24:27_ "For just as lightning comes from the east, and flashes even to the west, so shall the coming of the Son of Man be."
_Matthew 24:30_ "...then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming in the clouds of the sky with power and great glory."
_Matthew 24:31_ "And He will send forth His angels with a great trumpet and they will gather His elect from the four winds, from one end of the sky to the other."
_Matthew 24:35-39_ " Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words shall not pass away. But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the father alone. For the coming of the Son of Man will be just like the days of Noah. For as in those days which were before the flood they were eating and drinking, they were marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and they did not understand until the flood came and took them all away; so shall the coming of the Son of Man be."
_Matthew 24:44_ "For this reason you be ready too; for the Son of Man is coming at an hour when you do not think He will."
_Matthew 25:31-34_ "But when the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the angels with Him, then He will sit on His glorious throne. And all the nations will be gathered before Him, then He will separate them from one another; and He will put the sheep on His right, and the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on His right, 'Come, you who are blessed of my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world."
Who will be those blessed of the Father who will inherit the Kingdom of God? It is written: _John 1:12_ "As many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name."
Jesus the Messiah said: _John 14:6_ "I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the father, but through Me."
_Luke 11:28_ "Blessed are those who hear the word of God, and observe it."
Friends, may we not only hear God's Word but also obey it.