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​His Humanity Was Showing!

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  • ​His Humanity Was Showing!

    One of the essential doctrines (for receiving salvation) is believing in Christ’s incarnation, for “whosoever confesses not that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh, this is a deceiver and an antichrist” (2John 1:7). “By this you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the spirit of the Antichrist” (1John 4:2, 3).

    Therefore Scripture is avid concerning His incarnation with accounts that relate to the truth that “we do not have a high Priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin” (Heb 4:15). The nature of the human soul is sin, which nature coexists with the “new nature” in the believer; and the nature of the human body is infirmity, which body is still under the curse but will be “redeemed” (Rom 8:23) at the resurrection. It is a tremendous love and sensitivity of the Lord Jesus to endure for us a body which was “corruptible” (not indestructible) like ours.

    The humanity of the Lord Jesus was not manifested more than during the account of His crucifixion when He experienced the most difficult infirmity of the mind and heart, which was the overwhelming sense of His Father and God deserting or forsaking Him, which I believe was not an actual forsaking but the sense of being forsaken, deriving from His infirmities of being in the body—which nothing could confirm more of His incarnation (other than His resurrection) and His relation to us in our humanity. The “Cup” was more brief but no less demonstrative of His humanity exhibited by His request to the Father to “let this cup pass” (Mat 26:39), which all of course revealed His obedience to His Father.

    During the times when we encounter that sense of separation or emptiness of God’s essence (always testing to increase our faith) with us, let us remember that we have the same uninterrupted union with the Father as the Lord Jesus had, for as He has said “And He who sent Me is with Me. The Father has not left Me alone, for I always do those things that please Him” (John 8:29).

    -NC

  • #2
    Originally posted by NetChaplain View Post
    ...He experienced the most difficult infirmity of the mind and heart, which was the overwhelming sense of His Father and God deserting or forsaking Him, which I believe was not an actual forsaking but the sense of being forsaken, deriving from His infirmities of being in the body—which nothing could confirm more of His incarnation (other than His resurrection) and His relation to us in our humanity....

    ....let us remember that we have the same uninterrupted union...
    I don't know whether you are familiar N.C., but there are some that preach from upon the cross when Jesus said, "why have you forsaken me" that the Trinity was no more. They teach that Jesus was separated from the Father, or in short, the Father had turned His face from the Son. Any thoughts?

    I believe that Jesus was reciting Psalm 22, but besides the obvious, Jesus felt the wrath of God, even though Jesus was devoid of Sin, He received the wrath which was do us.

    Also, I like what Calvin suggests:

    .... We have likewise pointed out the distinction between the sentiment of nature and the knowledge of faith; and, therefore, the perception of God’s estrangement from him, which Christ had, as suggested by natural feeling, did not hinder him from continuing to be assured by faith that God was reconciled to him. This is sufficiently evident from the two clauses of the complaint; for, before stating the temptation, he begins by saying that he betakes himself to God as his God, and thus by the shield of faith he courageously expels that appearance of forsaking which presented itself on the other side. In short, during this fearful torture his faith remained uninjured, so that, while he complained of being forsaken, he still relied on the aid of God as at hand....

    ....No one who considers that Christ undertook the office of Mediator on the condition of suffering our condemnation, both in his body and in his soul, will think it strange that he maintained a struggle with the sorrows of death, as if an offended God had thrown him into a whirlpool of afflictions....
    God bless,
    William
    Comment>

    • #3
      Originally posted by William View Post
      I don't know whether you are familiar N.C., but there are some that preach from upon the cross when Jesus said, "why have you forsaken me" that the Trinity was no more. They teach that Jesus was separated from the Father, or in short, the Father had turned His face from the Son
      Hi brother Will - Thanks for your reply. I'm familiar but never have been in agreement with the concept that God turned His face in abandonment on Christ but not familiar that some believe it affected the Trinity.

      Personally I see no direct Scriptural support for either concept, esp. the latter concerning the Trinity, which is new to me and in my opinion is vastly distanced from Biblical truth (no reflection on you of course). I believe I know some of the Scriptures others may use for such concepts, which I think are not malicious but misunderstood, and are genuinely void of malicious intents.

      Christ's feeling of being forsaken was just more evidence confirming His "sympathy" (Heb 4:15) related to our "infirmities" from being in the body, which answers to Him being "made like His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest" (Heb 2:17); "Since He Himself has gone through suffering and testing, He is able to help us when we are being tested" (Heb 2:18 NLT); for "He Himself also is compassed with infirmity" (Heb 5:3). It was all about Him showing how far He went to relate to us!


      To Loving One Another
      Bob
      Comment>

      • #4
        Originally posted by NetChaplain View Post
        Hi brother Will - Thanks for your reply. I'm familiar but never have been in agreement with the concept that God turned His face in abandonment on Christ but not familiar that some believe it affected the Trinity.

        Personally I see no direct Scriptural support for either concept, esp. the latter concerning the Trinity, which is new to me and in my opinion is vastly distanced from Biblical truth (no reflection on you of course). I believe I know some of the Scriptures others may use for such concepts, which I think are not malicious but misunderstood, and are genuinely void of malicious intents.

        Christ's feeling of being forsaken was just more evidence confirming His "sympathy" (Heb 4:15) related to our "infirmities" from being in the body, which answers to Him being "made like His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest" (Heb 2:17); "Since He Himself has gone through suffering and testing, He is able to help us when we are being tested" (Heb 2:18 NLT); for "He Himself also is compassed with infirmity" (Heb 5:3). It was all about Him showing how far He went to relate to us!


        To Loving One Another
        Bob
        Hello N.C.,

        I agree with you about those which believe the Trinity was no more, however brief, were misunderstanding the Trinity, and probably the Hypostatic Union. I suppose that they fail to understand that Jesus had both a divine and human nature. They probably think that if Jesus is God and Jesus died it was His Divine nature that died on the cross. I guess the logic would be as follows, if one of the Trinity dies it is no longer a Trinity!

        I am also glad you said that His sympathy was related to our infirmities. Today, because of being Good Friday, many view this day to weep or mourn the death of Jesus. Perhaps they need to read Luke 9:60; 23:26-31. but that's another subject!

        God bless,
        Bub :)
        Comment>

        • #5
          Originally posted by William View Post

          Hello N.C.,

          I agree with you about those which believe the Trinity was no more, however brief, were misunderstanding the Trinity, and probably the Hypostatic Union. I suppose that they fail to understand that Jesus had both a divine and human nature. They probably think that if Jesus is God and Jesus died it was His Divine nature that died on the cross. I guess the logic would be as follows, if one of the Trinity dies it is no longer a Trinity!

          I am also glad you said that His sympathy was related to our infirmities. Today, because of being Good Friday, many view this day to weep or mourn the death of Jesus. Perhaps they need to read Luke 9:60; 23:26-31. but that's another subject!

          God bless,
          Bub :)
          Myself I think there could be a misunderstanding to fail to differentiate between human nature and human infirmity. It's my understanding that the nature of an individual has to do with the soul (which is only sinful for the natural man), and the infirmity has to do with the body. I suppose one could say that a nature of the body is infirmity, and the nature of the soul is sinful, but there is no Scriptural reference for Christ partaking of our nature, just of our infirmity.

          Amen to the Luke passages!
          Comment>

          • #6
            Originally posted by NetChaplain View Post
            Myself I think there could be a misunderstanding to fail to differentiate between human nature and human infirmity. It's my understanding that the nature of an individual has to do with the soul (which is only sinful for the natural man), and the infirmity has to do with the body. I suppose one could say that a nature of the body is infirmity, and the nature of the soul is sinful, but there is no Scriptural reference for Christ partaking of our nature, just of our infirmity.

            Amen to the Luke passages!
            Theopedia has a pretty good write up and references on Jesus' two natures: Hypostatic Union

            The two natures of Jesus refers to the doctrine that the one person Jesus Christ had/has two natures, divine and human. In theology this is called the doctrine of the hypostatic union, from the Greek word hypostasis (which came to mean substantive reality). Early church figures such as Athanasius used the term "hypostatic union" to describe the teaching that these two distinct natures (divine and human) co-existed substantively and in reality in the single person of Jesus Christ. The aim was to defend the doctrine that Jesus was simultaneously truly God and truly man.
            A point of interest, Apollinarianism:

            Apollinarians argued that in the Incarnation the Son of God assumed a human nature but not a human soul. Instead, his divine nature took the place of the soul. This view diminished the full humanity of Jesus and was condemned at the Council of Constantinople in 381. This view is similar to docetism.
            God bless,
            William
            Comment>

            • #7
              Yes, Jesus possessed everything man's humanity contained, except of course the Adamic nature, because the conception of His incarnation was not natural, hence not partaking of humanities sin in Him--just briefly on Him to judge "sin in the flesh." Thus my take is that He could never have any other nature than His own, which has always been "divine" (2Pe 1:4; "seed" 1John 3:9--new nature from Christ--Col 3:10).

              It did not require Him to partake of the Adamic nature to condemn sin for us, but rather required to be the sinless and spotless Lamb within, to receive the sin without--on His body. The Father could not allow sin within His Son, which answers to it being "laid on Him" (Isa 53:6) and never in Him ("yet without sin" Heb 4:15), which united Him with the nature of the body (infirmity), not the nature of the soul (sin). He has always had His own soul and spirit, but not a body.

              Always appreciate your posts, which always contain useful instruction somewhere within them.

              Thanking the Lord for using you, and God bless.
              Comment>

              • #8
                Originally posted by NetChaplain View Post
                The Father could not allow sin within His Son, which answers to it being "laid on Him" (Isa 53:6) and never in Him ("yet without sin" Heb 4:15), which united Him with the nature of the body (infirmity), not the nature of the soul (sin). He has always had His own soul and spirit, but not a body.
                The body is not inherently sinful. It does not have the seeds of evil in it. Though the sin of Adam has affected the whole person (Canons of Orange). One cannot say the soul is not evil and the flesh (body) evil. The body alone is not subject to corruption but the whole man is (total depravity). I believe there is great wisdom and instruction in early church ecumentical councils and creeds. One Creed in particular took nearly 400 years on this subject of the incarnation coming up with a Creed that was neither illogical or contradictory to Scripture. Another words, great time and expense was taken in the wording, so I am not easily persuaded to abandon the terminology that so many gave their lives to. That is, sometimes at the expense of their very own lives. I also think it is a great shame if anyone in our church doesn't care what our brothers for four centuries committed their lives to. Wouldn't you agree?

                Jesus is a person with a center of consciousness, an "I", and He has two natures. A nature answers the question, what kind of thing is this? The nature of gold is not to be yellow and malleable at 1000 degrees centigrade. The nature of gold is to have the atomic number 79. I have a human nature, that is, what I am. To answer who I am, "I" have a center of consciousness. Jesus has a center of consciousness, an "I", that has a divine nature (a set of divine attributes) and a human nature ( a set of human attributes). These existed fully intact, and they were attached to a single consciousness. - Dr. JP Moreland
                Here is the early church's position on the incarnation: The Creed of Chalcedon:

                We, then, following the holy Fathers, all with one consent, teach men to confess one and the same Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, the same perfect in Godhead and also perfect in manhood; truly God and truly man, of a reasonable soul and body; consubstantial with us according to the manhood; in all things like unto us, without sin; begotten before all ages of the Father according to the Godhead, and in these latter days, for us and for our salvation, born of the virgin Mary, the mother of God, according to the manhood; one and the same Christ, Son, Lord, Only-begotten, to be acknowledged in two natures, inconfusedly, unchangeably, indivisibly, inseparably; the distinction of natures being by no means taken away by the union, but rather the property of each nature being preserved, and concurring in one Person and one Subsistence, not parted or divided into two persons, but one and the same Son, and only begotten, God the Word, the Lord Jesus Christ, as the prophets from the beginning have declared concerning him, and the Lord Jesus Christ himself taught us, and the Creed of the holy Fathers has handed down to us.


                1. The significant point of the Creed

                The Creed of Chalcedon is that Christ is true God and true man united in one person, the person of the Son of God in the Trinity. It therefore answers the question, who is Jesus Christ, with precision. Of special significance are the four terms respecting the union of the two natures of Christ and their relationship: inconfusedly, unchangeably, indivisibly, inseparably. By this is meant something specific which is as follows:

                Inconfusedly or without mixture Has in view the truth that the divine nature and human nature of Christ are not mixed or confused together so as to become some third kind of being neither divine nor human. Christ has two natures not one. The error in view is called monophysitism, the idea of a God-man, if by the term is meant a mixture of the two natures. By implication the statement also rejects the notion that Jesus being a man evolved into a kind of God consciousness and sense of divinity. The human and divine natures are never mixed or confused. Jesus always possessed both the divine from eternity and the human from the moment of his conception.

                Unchangeably or without change Has in view the truth that neither the divine nature nor the human nature was essentially changed in any way by the union of the two natures in the people of the Son of God. Eternally the Son, Jesus, is God and is eternal, infinite, and almighty according to the divine nature. The union of the Son with the Human nature he assumed, when he took on him the form of a servant and was made man, Philippians 2:7, did not involve a change in the divine nature or essence. Likewise the human nature from the moment of its assumption by the Son of God remained a true, complete human nature which is finite and limited as a creature. It was also a sinless human nature standing at the center of the line of God's covenant, and a weakened human nature under the judgment of god for our sins. By his resurrection and ascension Jesus has now glorified the human nature but it remains a true human nature also in eternal glory.

                Indivisibly or without division Has in view the truth that each nature is full and complete without being divided into parts, that the son of god did not therefore assume a partial human nature such as a human body without a true human soul, mind, heart and will. It has in view the perfect completeness of each nature so that Jesus the Son of God is very God and very man. This was an answer to some of the false constructions as to the union of the two natures.

                Inseparably or without separation Has in view the truth that while the divine did not become human nor the human become divine that there was by unity of person an inner connection between them which was constant and which continues in Jesus Christ. By this inseparable connection Jesus Christ is the perfect revelation and manifestation of the name of God and his glory as the God of our salvation John 17:4-7, 26. By it also The Son of God in his finite human nature was enabled to sustain in body and soul the infinite eternal wrath of God against sin so as to deliver his people from it and rise in power from the dead. Romans 1:3,4; Isaiah 53:4, 6,10

                2. The use of the term "Mother of God" in the Creed of Chalcedon

                The creed also uses the term "Mother of God" concerning the Virgin Mary. In the creed itself it should be noted the term is directly limited by the words "according to the human nature. " The creed does not teach that Mary is the mother of the divine nature. The Creed likewise explicitly teaches that the person of the Son of God is "begotten before all ages of the Father according to the Godhead." It is the human nature which the Son of God assumed which is alone ascribed unto Mary from whom, after the flesh, the Savior was descended and born.

                The term itself, while it has given rise to Mary worship in both the Eastern church and western Romanism, has also a specific purpose in the creed. Against the error of Nestorius who taught two distinct persons, a human and divine, it was necessary to maintain that it was truly the Son of God united to the human nature who was born of Mary. Mary did therefore carry in her womb the Son of God united to the human nature, and in that sense only may be said to be the mother of God, when she brought forth her first born son after the flesh and laid him in a manger, Luke 2:7.

                The Son of God did not come upon the man Jesus as a distinct human person. Nor did the Son of God leave Jesus on the cross in His suffering and death. Both of these errors have repeatedly troubled the Christian church and are a denial of Jesus Christ as the true Savior. It belongs to certain Gnostic heresies, already found in the early church, with which John contends in I John 4:1-4. The denial of the true incarnation of the Son of God in the human nature is according to I John 4:3 of the spirit of Antichrist. This corrupt error, in a garbled form from the Nestorian sect, has also made its way into the Koran. It is not authentic Christian doctrine.

                At the same time the perversion of the role of Mary which developed in both East and West justly gives rise to reservations about this expression however it is limited. It is, in part, for this reason that the creed is not named in the Confession of Faith. The sound doctrine of the creed is taken up in the Confession of Faith, rather than the creed itself.
                God bless,
                William
                Comment>

                • #9
                  Originally posted by William View Post
                  The body is not inherently sinful
                  I agree, the body can never be evil but only used to perform evil. The evil is always derived from the soul which contains the nature of good or evil. The word "flesh" in the NT is nearly always in reference to the nature, not the body. This is opposite in the OT which nearly always refers to the body.

                  The body cannot be accountable for evil because it is a thing, not a being (spirit).
                  Comment>
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