Here are five amazing facts about Jesus that you may or may not have known.
Jesus, the I Am in the Old Testament
I didn’t know this early in my Christian faith, but He was the God of the Old Testament. He gave the seven “I AM” statements in John 6:35, John 8:12, John 10:9, John 10:11, John 11:25, John 14:6, John 15:1, and John 8:58. Jesus said, “Truly, Truly, I say to you, before Abraham was born, I am,” which means that Jesus existed before His human life on earth. Remember when Moses asked what His name was so that he could tell the Israelites at the burning bush? God said, “I AM that I AM” (Ex. 3:14), meaning that He is the self-existent One Who has always been. The Great I AM is the Bread of Life, the Light of the World, the Gate, the Good Shepherd, the Resurrection and Life, the Way, the Truth and Life, the True Vine. Israel all “drank from the same spiritual drink. For they drank from the spiritual Rock that followed them, and the Rock was Christ” (1 Cor. 10:4).
Jesus Had a Job
When Jesus reached 30 years of age, He began His earthly ministry, but before that, He held a job and was a carpenter (Mark 6:3). He had the same occupation that His earthly father did as a carpenter (Matt. 13:55). Studying the times in which Jesus was on earth, being a carpenter was the most physically demanding of all jobs since carpenters used stone and large timbers to build. This meant cutting timbers and chiseling stone, so Jesus must have obviously been a very strong man, even though He was and is also God.
Jesus Had Brothers and Sisters
Jesus was not an only child. In fact, He had brothers and sisters, even though they obviously had a different father (Matt. 12:46, 13:55-56; John 7:3-5; Acts 1:14). However, none of His family, except Mary and perhaps even his earthly father, Joseph, really believed in Him, at least not until after His resurrection, of which James did.
In the shortest verse in the Bible, it says, “Jesus wept” (John 11:35), showing His deep, compassionate heart. When Lazarus died, he wept with those who wept, which is what Paul said we all should do (Rom. 12:15). Another time, “as he approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it” (Luke 19:41) because He knew that judgment would soon come upon the Jews at Jerusalem (Luke 19:42-4). The fate of the lost should make us weep, too.
John the Baptist, Jesus’ Cousin
Jesus once said, “Truly, I say to you, among those born of women there has arisen no one greater than John the Baptist” (Matt. 11:11). But did you know that John the Baptist was Jesus’ second cousin? Jesus’ mother Mary was a cousin to John the Baptist’s mother, Elizabeth (Luke 1:36). John the Baptist was eventually beheaded (Matt. 14:9-11), and “when Jesus heard what had happened, he withdrew by boat privately to a solitary place” (Matt. 14:13), most likely to grieve over the loss of His cousin, John.
The most surprising thing about Jesus may be that He died for us while we were still wicked sinners and enemies of God (Rom. 5:8, 10) and that none of us deserved to have the sinless Savior die for sinful man. Yet He loved us enough to die for us to reconcile us back to God because our sins had separated us from Him (Isaiah 59:1-2).