Jesus Among the Prophets

Like other Jewish prophets Jesus claimed that he was a prophet declaring God’s truth, and he had a large following of people who recognized him as a prophet. Jesus and other prophets started their ministry coming out of the desert which indicated that they underwent a time of purifying ritual, discipline and reflection on priorities.[1] Jesus and other prophets promised deliverance and special acts by God while speaking with eschatological overtones. They called people to repentance, religious commitment and social justice. What made Jesus unique can best be summarized by Cleopas’ statement concerning Jesus as “a man who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people…we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel” (Luke 24:19,21). Jesus was unique among the prophets in his message that he was one with the Father and that the kingdom of God had come upon them. This made him superior in uniqueness from the other prophets, and his miracles and resurrection confirmed his prophetic standing and message.

[1] James D.G. Dunn, “Prophetic Movements and Zealots” in The World of the New Testament: Cultural, Social, and Historical Contexts,eds. Joel B. Green and Lee Martin McDonald (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2017), 244.