Last week we looked at the doctrine of the Trinity, the Three in One. One God, eternally existent in three Persons, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. This week, we want to look a little deeper into the second person in the Trinity, Jesus Christ.
The person of Christ had two natures.
Jesus is in form and nature God (Phil. 2:6).
We looked at this last week, but let’s look at this a little further. We know from the Old Testament that God created heaven, earth, and everything that exists (Gen. 1:1). Through Christ all things were created (Col. 1:16), which equates Him with God. Jesus is before all things, and He was there in the beginning (Jn. 1:1, 14). This lets us know that He is eternal, and we know that only God is eternal (Psa. 90:2). He is above all things, including rulers and kingdoms (Eph. 1:19-23). Only God is above all things (Psa.97:9). Therefore we know Him to be fully God.
We also know that Jesus was fully human.
• He had a human genealogy (Matt. 1:1-16).
• He was born of a virgin woman. (Matt. 1:20-21 NIV) “But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, ‘Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.’” This was prophesied in scripture. (Isa. 7:14 NIV) “Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.”
• He had a physical body and He was heard, seen and felt (1 Jn. 1:1-3). This was affirmed through His life in the gospels.
• He had human emotions. He got tired and slept. (Matt. 8:24 NIV) “Suddenly a furious storm came up on the lake, so that the waves swept over the boat. But Jesus was sleeping.” He got hungry. (Matt. 4:2 NIV) “After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry.” And Jesus mourned. (John 11:35 NIV) “Jesus wept.”
• He was tempted in every way as we are, but He didn’t sin. (Heb. 4:14-15 NIV) “Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has ascended into heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin.”
• Not only this, but He died on a cross. (John 19:32-33 NIV) “The soldiers therefore came and broke the legs of the first man who had been crucified with Jesus, and then those of the other. But when they came to Jesus and found that he was already dead, they did not break his legs.” And He bore our sins in His body. (1 Pet. 2:24 NIV) “‘He himself bore our sins’ in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; ‘by his wounds you have been healed.’”
• Jesus was buried. (Matt. 27:59-60 NIV) “Joseph took the body, wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, and placed it in his own new tomb that he had cut out of the rock. He rolled a big stone in front of the entrance to the tomb and went away.”
• Upon His resurrection, when He appeared to the apostles, then to Thomas (John 20:27), He offered for Thomas to put his fingers in His hands and his fist into His side.
• After He arose from the dead, He had a resurrected body (He was not a ghost). (Luke 24:40-43 NIV) “When he had said this, he showed them his hands and feet. And while they still did not believe it because of joy and amazement, he asked them, ‘Do you have anything here to eat?’ They gave him a piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate it in their presence.”
All of these scriptures, and many others, show Jesus to be fully human.
He was fully human, but without sin (2 Cor. 5:21). Through this we see that Jesus was both fully man and fully God. (Rom. 9:5 NIV) “Theirs are the patriarchs, and from them is traced the human ancestry of the Messiah, who is God over all, forever praised! Amen.”
Because Jesus was a sinless man, He was an acceptable sacrifice for our sins; and because He is God, His sacrifice is acceptable for everyone’s sins for all time. How glorious is this! Christ’s ultimate work was that of bringing salvation to a fallen humanity, and He has not lost one that the Father had given Him (Jn. 6:37-40).
Next week we will look at the issue of salvation, justification by grace through faith alone, and regeneration by the Holy Spirit.
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