The authors of the New Testament refer to Jesus as the Son of God, Christ Jesus, and Jesus Christ. Many assume that Christ is Jesus’ last name. However, the name is a title. As a Christian, you might have asked yourself, why is Jesus called Christ?
The name Christ is derived from the Greek term Christos which means the anointed one. Jesus is called Christ because Christians believe He is the anointed one, the son of God who, according to the Bible, was crucified, died, and was resurrected on the 3rd day so that the Old Testament’s messianic prophecy could be fulfilled.
How many times in the Bible is Jesus called Christ? What does the term ‘Christ’ mean in the Bible? Where did Jesus get his Christ’s name? What does it mean when Jesus is called Christ? When did Jesus get called Christ? Did Jesus fulfill his purpose as Christ? Keep reading to learn more!
How many times in the Bible is Jesus called Christ?
Jesus is referred to as ‘Christ’ 555 times in the Bible. He is referred to as ‘Jesus Christ’ 195 times. The names Christ or Jesus Christ only appear in the 27 New Testament books. In the Old Testament, there is no mention of the word Christ. The Old Testament authors referred to Jesus as Shiloh, Messiah, Savior, and more names but did not use the term Christ.
What does the term ‘Christ’ mean in the Bible?
The term Christ as used in the Bible means that Jesus is the anointed one. It will surprise you that Christ is not Jesus’ last name, as many assume. The name Christ is derived from the Greek term Christos, which means the chosen or anointed one.
In the Old Testament, kings, prophets, and priests were anointed with oil to emblematize their God-given authority. Biblical authors refer to Jesus as Christ because He is the ‘King of Kings and Lord of Lords’. Simply put, Jesus is the anointed one God sent to the earth to save or redeem His children from sin.
According to the Bible, Jesus is more than a mortal or a rabbi. He is the Son of God. Therefore, as a Christian, if you put your faith in Him, all your sins are forgiven, and you are given a chance to have eternal life. For this reason, Jesus is referred to as Christ in the Bible. He is the savior and Lord to those who believe in Him.
Where did Jesus get his Christ’s name?
Jesus got the name Christ because Christians believe He is the anointed one, the son of God who, as the Bible states, was crucified, died, and was resurrected on the 3rd day so that the Old Testament’s messianic prophecy could be fulfilled.
In the Old Testament, many prophets foretold His coming even before His birth. Also, an angel of God appeared to both Mary and Joseph and informed them that Mary would conceive by the Holy Spirit and that the child she would bear would save God’s people from sin, Matthew 1:26. He would be the Messiah/Savior.
As I mentioned, Christ is derived from the Greek term Christos, the chosen or anointed one. The term Christos has the same meaning as the Hebrew term Mashiach which is translated to Messiah in English. Therefore, the name Jesus Christ means Jesus the Messiah or Jesus the anointed one.
What does it mean when Jesus is called Christ?
It means that He is the anointed one. Christians believe that Jesus is the fulfillment of many Prophecies in the Old Testament, stating that a Messiah would be born from the lineage of King David to save His people from their sinful ways.
For example, Isaiah states, “He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he hath borne our griefs and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions; he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him, and with his stripes, we are healed,” Isaiah 53:3-5. Isaiah foretells precisely what happened to Jesus during His time here on earth in this passage. He states that God would send Messiah to die for man’s iniquities and that the latter would be rejected and despised and live a life of sorrow.
Jesus is also called Christ because He is a perfect human being. The Bible states that during His time here on earth, Jesus lived a sinless life and followed to the letter everything that God the Father asked Him to do. Therefore, only He can be considered a perfect role model for man. Also, only His suffering and death had the power to redeem man from sin; His death was the ultimate sacrifice.
Lastly, Jesus is referred to as Christ because He is the only one with the power to save you from sin. Through His death and resurrection, the Son of God overcame death and offers those that believe in Him access to eternal life in paradise after their physical death here on earth.
Therefore, what it means when Jesus is called Christ is that He is the fulfillment of the Old Testament prophecies of the coming of Messiah, is a perfect human being (sinless), and is the only deity with the power to offer you salvation from sin. For this reason, you are expected to follow in His footsteps or obey His commands if you are to be called His friend and have the chance to have eternal life.
When did Jesus get called Christ?
Jesus was proclaimed as Christ at the time He was born. “And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he demanded of them where Christ should be born,” Matthew 2:4. This passage depicted the words of Herod I when he heard that a child had been born that would save the Jews from the reign of the oppressive Roman government. The Roman government misinterpreted Jesus’ earthly role and saw Him as threatening their reign.
Herod I used Christ to refer to Jesus because He was familiar with the Jewish belief that a messiah would be born to save them from oppressive rule and sin. For this reason, He referred to Jesus as Christ, meaning the Messiah.
Therefore, Jesus was called the name Christ at birth, unlike what some people believe. Some groups believe that Jesus was named Christ at Baptism when He was filled with the Holy Spirit.
Did Jesus fulfill his purpose as Christ?
As mentioned, the name Christ means Messiah. In the Old Testament, it is prophesied multiple times that Messiah would rise from the House of David to save God’s people from their sinful way and the oppressive rule of the Roman Empire. Also, before He was born, Angel Gabriel appeared to Mary and Joseph and informed them that Mary would conceive by the Holy Ghost and that child she would bear was Holy and would save His people from sin.
Jesus fulfilled His purpose because He saved all who believe in Him from sin through His suffering and death. The only thing those who believe in Jesus require to be forgiven of their sins is to pray to Him. Therefore, if you have faith and believe in Jesus, the Bible states that you will have eternal life.
As a devout Christian, I have always been passionate about the Christian faith. This inspired me to pursue a degree in Religious studies and a Masters in Theology in college. I have also been privileged to teach 4 Christian courses in a college and university. Since I am dedicated to spreading the word of God, I am actively involved in the Church. Additionally, I share his word online and cover diverse topics on the Christian faith through my platform. You can read more about me on the about us page.