Sunday’s sermon was great! I was literately on edge as the question was asked, “What does it matter if Christ was fully human or not”? I turned to my neighbor in the Choir and whispered, “oh this is going to be good…it means everything”! As part of my personal spiritual discipline practices, I like to take notes from worship services I attend. Anything that catches my attention, I jot down and revisit later in the week to reflect upon.
For this week, it was the sermon. Anything dealing with Heritage (early Church) is fascinating and kind of my nerdy pleasure.From the early church, believers were committed to proclaim Christ as God. The problem in the Greco-Roman world was that God became human. This caused a debate within the early church. The Docetists could not accept Christ being both human and God. They believed Jesus only seemed to be human, but was not. The name Docetists comes from the Greek word Dokien, meaning “to seem.”
In response to the Docetists, Ignatius of Antioch was adamant Christ is fully human. Ignatius’s argument was that only a fully human Christ could heal us.
Another who was adamant about Christ’s dual nature was Athanasius. In his writing titled, Orations against Arius, he posed the question, “Why did God become human”? His response, “God did so to give us a share in divine life (deification).”
My takeaway from Sunday was this: If Jesus does not truly become a human being, then humanity could not be healed. In our nature, we are wounded and in a state of sickness needing to be healed. We are healed only in the humility of Christ who takes the form of a servant, the center of the universe, empties Himself, suffers and dies in order to heal us. It is that humility that saves us. Through the Resurrection, the resurrected Christ has had the human experience and can be an authenticate advocate for us before God. Christ, in this healing process, calls us to live as Christ did, causing our focus to be on God and love for each other. This results in us standing up, removing the focus from ourselves and seeing our neighbor.
May this be our prayer for the week: God, forgive us when we have not loved You with our whole hearts. Forgive us for not loving our neighbor as our self. Free us to love You and others with our whole hearts. Transform us and heal us through Jesus Christ, Amen.
Chase Burns, Youth Pastor