Is Jesus' last name christ?

Most everybody has heard about the man called Jesus Christ who actually lived on this planet approximately 2,000 years ago,[1] but can we say that his first name is Jesus and his last name, or surname, is Christ? No! (Actually they did not have surnames in the 1st century A.D.) Although Jesus is his first name, Christ was a title given to him and not his last name!

The English word Christ comes from the Greek word Christos, and the Greek word Christos is a translation of the Hebrew word Mashiach. The words Mashiach & Christos mean “the Messiah,” or “the anointed one.”[2] The Jewish people were looking for and expecting a coming leader/ruler that would lead and guide them, help and save them! They had been waiting for him for over 4,000 years, and even since the beginning of time! This leader would be anointed by God and thus he was called “the anointed one.”

In the Gospel of John the 4th chapter Jesus encounters a woman at a well. In their discussion she says: “I know that Messias cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come, he will tell us all things” (John 3:25). Then Jesus replies to her: “I that speak unto thee am he” (John 3:26). When Andrew went to tell his brother Peter about his new friend Jesus, he said to Peter: “We have found the Messias, which is, being interpreted, the Christ” (John 1:41). And even when Jesus asked his disciples, “Whom say ye that I am?”, Peter replied: “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God” (Matthew 16:15-16).

This is also why when Matthew & Luke began their Gospel they started with the lineage of Jesus, because the Messiah was to have a certain lineage…He was to be the son of Abraham & the son of David, because God had made certain promises to Abraham & David. (see also Rom. 1:2-3)

The prophecies about the Messiah/Christ actually began with the 1st family on earth! When Adam & Eve had disobeyed God, God came to them in judgement and mercy. He killed the first animal and made them skin clothing. But the Lord also informed Eve that her seed would crush the head of Satan’s seed, and Satan’s seed would crush the heel of Eve’s seed (Gen. 3:15). Some theologians, along with early Church Fathers Justin Martyr & Irenaeus, have referred to this as the “Proto-evangelium,” – the first preaching of the Gospel, and the first Messianic prophecy! In a time of failure & sin, God announces a Savior that will remedy the situation!

Some see the Messianic lineage (the Messianic seed) being traced through Noah’s son Shem, when Noah states that God will “dwell in the tents of Shem” (Gen. 9:27). But all see a Messianic prophecy when God tells Abraham, “And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed” (Gen. 22:18). And Paul even states that the Scriptures preached the gospel unto Abraham (Gal. 3:8).

Years latter, when Jacob was blessing his children, Jacob prophecies over his son Judah stating, “The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come and unto him shall the gathering of the people be” (Gen. 49:10), noting that the lineage of the Messiah would be traced, from Eve, through Shem, through Abraham, through Isaac, and now through Judah. And it is revealed that through the line of Judah the Messiah/Christ would come.

Years after the Patriarchs and after God’s covenant with Abraham, God makes a covenant with King David. In the book of 2nd Samuel chapter 7, God tells David that David’s throne will be established forever (2 Sam. 7:13-16)!

The prophet Isaiah prophesied that the Messiah would be “born of a virgin,” would be, “Immanuel – God with us,” and would be called “Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace” (Isa. 7:14, 9:6-7).

Micah prophesied that a ruler would come out of “Bethlehem”…“whose goings forth have been from everlasting” (Micah 5:2)! And although Zechariah predicted that Zion’s King would “come lowly riding upon a donkey, bringing salvation” (Zech. 9:9), the people would “value him at 30 pieces of silver” (the price of a slave) (Zech. 11:12-13), and the inhabitants of Jerusalem would look upon God as one whom “they have pierced,” (see also Psalm 22:16) and mourn for Him as for his “only son” (Zech. 12:10).

Some even think that the prophet Daniel announced the exact day when the Messiah would present himself, in Daniel’s Seventy-Sevens (see Dan. 9:24-27). And please don’t forget the greatest of all the Messianic prophecies – Isaiah chapter 53! You’ll have to read that one for yourself to believe it! And see also my accompanying tract entitled The Servant of the Lord Challenge, based on that chapter!

You see, although I did not have the space or time to list all of the prophecies concerning the Messiah, I think you will have to admit that there are quite a few verses pointing to the coming of this “anointed one”! And you probably would be willing to ask, “How can somebody know the future?!?” Well, you are right! For only God can foretell the future with such accuracy!! As Isaiah informs us in 46:9-10 when God states, “I am God, and there is no other I am God, and there is none like me. I make known the end from the beginning.” And in 44:7 where God says, “Who then is like me…let them foretell what will come.” Because, nobody can foretell the future except God!

You see, prophecy is given to us to prove that there is a God, and that He and He alone knows the future! God foretold about His Messiah, and Savior of the World, so that all would know that Jesus “the Christ” is the Son of God, and so that they would turn to him for salvation!

But what about you? Have you allowed Jesus to be the Lord of your life?!? This is called faith, or belief, or trust. Trust him with your life today! He alone can forgive you, lead you in this life, and take you to his home in heaven when you die! If you have any questions regarding this tract, please do not hesitate to contact me at: Thank you!

[1] Even ancient secular historians such as Tacitus & Josephus, along with others, speak of Jesus.
[2] Walter Kaiser informs that there are nine occurrences in the OT where the word “the anointed one” spoke of a coming person, usually in the line of David, who was Yahweh’s king and would reign over His everlasting kingdom on earth (see Walter C. Kaiser, Jr., Toward an Old Testament Theology, p. 148-149).