Who is Jesus – Lunatic, Liar, or Lord.?
The world describes Jesus Christ as a good teacher or a moral philosopher. They’ll heap praises and accolades on Him, calling Him a religious revolutionary who changed the world with a philosophy of self-sacrifice and unconditional love. Mahatma Gandhi saw Jesus as a great moral teacher but not more than that.
But is this idea of Jesus being a good moral teacher sufficient?
C.S. Lewis described the inherent foolishness of claiming Christ as nothing more than a good teacher in his book Mere Christianity. He wrote:
I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: “I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept his claim to be God.” That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic—on the level with the man who says he is a poached egg—or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up for a fool, you can spit at him and kill him as a demon or you can fall at his feet and call him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronising nonsense about his being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.
Jesus is the central figure of Christianity. He was born in Bethlehem, Israel, about 2,000 years ago. John 1:1 says “the Word was God.” John 1:14 says “the Word became flesh.” This clearly indicates that Jesus is God in the flesh. Thomas the disciple declared to Jesus, “My Lord and my God” (John 20:28). Jesus does not correct him. The apostle Paul describes Him as, “…our great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ” (Titus 2:13). The apostle Peter says the same, “…our God and Saviour Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 1:1). God the Father is witness of Jesus’ full identity as well, “But about the Son he says, ‘Your throne, O God, will last forever and ever, and righteousness will be the sceptre of your kingdom.’” Old Testament prophecies of Christ announce His deity, “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6).