When considering the most fundamental Christian beliefs about Jesus, it is important to first remember that Christianity is a complex world religion that has developed many branches over the centuries. At its birth in the early years of what is now know as the Common Era, it was a radical religious and social movement based around the teachings, miracles, and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth, a Jew who lived in what is now the modern state of Israel. As time went on, different groups have divided over particular theological differences. Today, the Christian Church has a vast number of denominations ranging from the traditional Catholic and Orthodox churches to the contemporary Non-Denominational Church. Although these groups are certainly different, there exists a collection of fundamental beliefs that groups them into the category of Christianity. Most of these fundamental Christian beliefs about Jesus can be broadly understood.
First, Christians believe in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Christians believe that Jesus is the Son of God who was born to the virgin Mary early in the first century. Christians hold to the teachings of Jesus- various sermons, parables, and other dialogues recorded in the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. These Gospels make up the first four books of the New Testament, the second part of the Christian Bible following the Old Testament which records God’s creation of the world and interaction with mankind- specifically Israel, his chosen people. Jesus was a Jew and frequently referenced the Old Testament scripture in his sermons and teachings.
In addition to believing in the teachings of Jesus, Christians believe that Jesus performed miracles during his ministry. Some of the most famous of these miracles include feeding 5,000 men with a few loaves of bread and fish, and turning water into wine. Christians also believe that Jesus healed many people of various diseases. The greatest miracle that Christians believe in is the resurrection of Jesus from the dead after he was crucified in Jerusalem. Christians believe that Jesus was crucified, buried, and then was raised from the dead three days later. This core belief is celebrated in the Christian celebrations of Good Friday and Easter.
Apart from the beliefs surrounding the person of Jesus, Christians believe in the existence of sin, evil, or disobedience to God. Christians believe that God is a perfect being who exists eternally without sin. Christians believe that God created the universe and formed man after His own image. According to Christian belief, humanity enjoyed community with God until sin entered the world through the disobedience of the first humans, Adam and Eve. As a result of their sin, all of humanity became subject to toil, death, and eternal separation from God. Christian belief holds that the work of Jesus on the cross serves as the ultimate sacrifice for sin, and that his resurrection is the ultimate victory over death. Thus, Christians believe that sin and evil can be overcome in one’s life and world through faith in Christ’s death and resurrection. Christians believe that Christ will return to restore creation and bring the ultimate judgment against sin, but the exact time of this return is only known to God.
Although there are many more fundamental Christian beliefs, the core of Christianity is the person of Jesus Christ- his life, death, resurrection, defeat of sin, and his second coming. While most Christians could disagree on specific details regarding Christ’s teaching or ministry, all will hold to the belief that Christ is the central pillar of Christian belief. Without Christ, there can be no Christianity.