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Who is Jesus Christ to Baha’is? A good man? A mere prophet? The short answer: Baha’is believe Jesus is who he says he is.
We should keep in mind that when striving to understand Jesus, who is essentially divine, with our limited human minds, we should be careful not to limit Him to easy definitions. Expounding on the station of the Messengers of God, the Baha’i teachings say:
“In every instance, they have voiced an utterance that would conform to the requirements of the occasion, and have ascribed all these declarations to Themselves, declarations ranging from the realm of divine Revelation to the realm of creation, and from the domain of Divinity even unto the domain of earthly existence. Thus it is that whatsoever be their utterance, whether it pertain to the realm of Divinity, Lordship, Prophethood, Messengership, Guardianship, Apostleship or Servitude, all is true, beyond the shadow of a doubt.”
The Holy Bible refers to Jesus by many of these same titles and stations. These verses clearly affirm his Lordship, also referring to Him as the Son of Man, and as Teacher:
“You call Me Teacher and Lord, and you say well, for so I am.” – John 13:13
“Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming.” – Matthew 24:42
Jesus Christ is referred to as a “Prophet” in these verses of the Bible. Christians widely accept this verse as a promise of Jesus Christ in the Pentateuch:
“I will raise up for them a Prophet like you from among their brethren, and will put My words in His mouth, and He shall speak to them all that I command Him.” (Deuteronomy 18:18)
“But Jesus said to them, ‘A prophet is not without honor except in his own country and in his own house.'” Matthew 13:57
“Nevertheless I must journey today, tomorrow, and the day following; for it cannot be that a prophet should perish outside of Jerusalem.” Luke 13:33
“So the multitudes said, ‘This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth of Galilee.'” Matthew 21:11
Does that mean that Jesus is “merely” a Prophet? Let’s keep reading. Jesus refers to Himself as the Son of God:
Jesus heard that they had cast him out; and when He had found him, He said unto him, ‘Dost thou believe on the Son of God? He answered and said, ‘Who is he, Lord, that I might believe on him?’ And Jesus said unto him, ‘Thou hast both seen him, and it is he that talketh with thee.’ – John 9:35-36.
These verses of the Bible refer to Jesus Christ as a “Messenger” –the “Messenger of the Covenant”:
Behold, I send My messenger and he will prepare the way before Me. And the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come to His temple, even the Messenger of the Covenant, in whom you delight. – Malachi 3:1.
Paul’s Epistle to the Hebrews refers to Jesus as an “Apostle” and as the “High Priest”:
“Therefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our confession, Christ Jesus… “
The Bible even expresses the servitude and meekness of Jesus. In Isaiah God refers to Jesus as “My Servant,” and Jesus confirmed that the verse referred to Him:
“Behold! My Servant whom I uphold, My Elect One in whom My soul delights!” Isaiah 42:1 (Matthew 12:17-18 confirms that this verse refers to Jesus.)
The Bible refers to Jesus as “savior”:
“Then the angel said to them, ‘… For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.'”
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Who, then, is Jesus? According to the Bible He is the Son of Man, the Son of God, Lord, Prophet, Messenger, Teacher, Servant, Savior, Apostle, and High Priest. So the above-quoted Bible verses demonstrate the Baha’i explanation that in various circumstances the Manifestations of God identify themselves by different names and stations – even the station of divinity and Godhead:
“Were any of the all-embracing Manifestations of God to declare, ‘I am God!’ He verily speaketh the truth, and no doubt attacheth thereto. For it hath been repeatedly demonstrated that through their Revelation, their attributes and names, the Revelation of God, His name and His attributes, are made manifest in the world…”