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Christology 1 Class 2

Christology 1  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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When we study the person of Christ we look at both his humanity and deity.
How is Jesus fully God and fully man in one person?
The basic proposition for this class is that “Jesus Christ was fully God and fully man in one person and will be so forever”
And if we follow him He has promised that we will one day be with him and be like him for we will see him as he is.
1 John 3:2 ESV
Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.
Jesus Christ was fully God and fully man in one person and will be so forever
The scriptural material supporting this definition is extensive. We will discuss first the humanity of Christ, then his deity, and then attempt to show how Jesus’ deity and humanity are united in the one person of Christ.
Today we continue looking at his full humanity.
Lets review last weeks lesson:
The Humanity of Christ
1. The Virgin Birth
The doctrinal importance of the virgin birth is seen in at least three areas:
1. It shows that salvation ultimately must come from the Lord.
2. The virgin birth made possible the uniting of full deity and full humanity in one person.
3. The virgin birth also makes possible Christ’s true humanity without inherited sin.
2. The Human Weakness and Limitations of Christ
a. Jesus Had a Human Body
b. Jesus Had A Human Mind
c. Jesus Had a Human Soul and Human Emotions
d. People Near Jesus Saw Him as Only a Man
3. The Sinlessness of Jesus Christ
Jesus was different in one way - without sin and never sinned in his lifetime.
But, if he didn’t sin could he really be human?
Answer - humans are now in a abnormal state - before the fall we were truly human. We need to be restored to our original human condition.
Sinlessness of Jesus is taught in the NT.
Luke 2:40 ESV
And the child grew and became strong, filled with wisdom. And the favor of God was upon him.
Satan tried to tempt Jesus but was unsuccessful.
Luke 4:13 ESV
And when the devil had ended every temptation, he departed from him until an opportune time.
All three gospel’s show evidence of Jesus’ sinlessness.
John 8:46 ESV
Which one of you convicts me of sin? If I tell the truth, why do you not believe me?
He asked this question and recieved no answer.
Jesus himself declares his sinlessness:
John 8:12 ESV
Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
Light = truthfulness and moral purity.
Only someone free from sin can make this claim.
He also had perfect obedience:
John 8:29 ESV
And he who sent me is with me. He has not left me alone, for I always do the things that are pleasing to him.”
At the end of his life he said:
John 15:10 ESV
If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love.
Pilot could only conclude:
John 18:38 ESV
Pilate said to him, “What is truth?” After he had said this, he went back outside to the Jews and told them, “I find no guilt in him.
In the book of Acts Jesus is referred to as the “Holy One” or the “Righteous One”
Acts 2:27 ESV
For you will not abandon my soul to Hades, or let your Holy One see corruption.
Acts 3:14 ESV
But you denied the Holy and Righteous One, and asked for a murderer to be granted to you,
Acts 4:30 ESV
while you stretch out your hand to heal, and signs and wonders are performed through the name of your holy servant Jesus.”
Acts 7:52 ESV
Which of the prophets did your fathers not persecute? And they killed those who announced beforehand the coming of the Righteous One, whom you have now betrayed and murdered,
Acts 13:35 ESV
Therefore he says also in another psalm, “ ‘You will not let your Holy One see corruption.’
Paul was careful in how he described the humanity / sinlessness of Jesus.
Romans 8:3 ESV
For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh,
2 Corinthians 5:21 ESV
For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
The author of Hebrews affirms that Jesus was tempted yet did not sin:
Hebrews 4:15 ESV
For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin.
Hebrews 7:26 ESV
For it was indeed fitting that we should have such a high priest, holy, innocent, unstained, separated from sinners, and exalted above the heavens.
Peter also speaks of Jesus Sinlessness:
1 Peter 1:19 ESV
but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot.
1 Peter 3:18 ESV
For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit,
John in his epistle calls declares that Jesus had no sin...
1 John 3:5 ESV
You know that he appeared in order to take away sins, and in him there is no sin.
Reading the NT it cannot be denied that Jesus was sinless.
We must also consider briefly the temptation of Christ...
Consider the implications of the temptation of Christ -
Christ was tempted in every way to doubt his sonship - the Love of God.
Satan brings into question God’s provision, God’s promotion, and God’s protection.
In these temptations in the wilderness and in the various temptations that faced him through the thirty-three years of his life, Christ obeyed God in our place and as our representative, thus succeeding where Adam had failed, where the people of Israel in the wilderness had failed, and where we had failed
Grudem, W. A. (2004). Systematic theology: an introduction to biblical doctrine (p. 537). Leicester, England; Grand Rapids, MI: Inter-Varsity Press; Zondervan Pub. House.
Romans 5:18–19 ESV
Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men. For as by the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man’s obedience the many will be made righteous.
Because of His temptation Jesus gained an ability to understand and help us in our temptations:
Hebrews 2:18 ESV
For because he himself has suffered when tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.
Jesus can sympathize with our weaknesses and was tempted as we are every day.
Hebrews 4:15–16 ESV
For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
Jesus’ temptation is very significant.
Jesus was let by the Spirit in the wilderness to be tempted. He did this to conquer Satan for everyone of us.
We can find great victory in temptation through abiding in Jesus, through abiding we have the power of the Spirit to fight temptation like Jesus did.
There is a very real victory over sin through the power of the Spirit that abides in us.
4. Could Jesus have sinned?

Some people argue for the impeccability of Christ, in which the word impeccable means “not able to sin.” Others object that if Jesus were not able to sin, his temptations could not have been real, for how can a temptation be real if the person being tempted is not able to sin anyway?

To answer this question we must look at the Scriptures we have.
Scripture clearly affirms that Christ never actually sinned.
It also clearly affirms that Jesus was tempted, and that these were real temptations.
We also must affirm with Scripture that “God cannot be tempted with evil” James 1:13.
So, if Jesus was God he couldnt be tempted with evil?
So, we seem to have a contradiction but we do not have an actual contradiction.
The Bible tells us 4 facts:
“Jesus was tempted” and “Jesus was fully man” and “Jesus was fully God” and “God cannot be tempted”
Here is a possible solution:
(1) If Jesus’ human nature had existed by itself, independent of his divine nature, then it would have been a human nature just like that which God gave Adam and Eve. It would have been free from sin but nonetheless able to sin. Therefore, if Jesus’ human nature had existed by itself, there was the abstract or theoretical possibility that Jesus could have sinned, just as Adam and Eve’s human natures were able to sin.
(2) But Jesus’ human nature never existed apart from union with his divine nature. From the moment of his conception, he existed as truly God and truly man as well. Both his human nature and his divine nature existed united in one person.
(3) Although there were some things (such as being hungry or thirsty or weak) that Jesus experienced in his human nature alone and were not experienced in his divine nature (see below), nonetheless, an act of sin would have been a moral act that would apparently have involved the whole person of Christ. Therefore, if he had sinned, it would have involved both his human and divine natures.
(4) But if Jesus as a person had sinned, involving both his human and divine natures in sin, then God himself would have sinned, and he would have ceased to be God. Yet that is clearly impossible because of the infinite holiness of God’s nature.
(5) Therefore, if we are asking if it was actually possible for Jesus to have sinned, it seems that we must conclude that it was not possible. The union of his human and divine natures in one person prevented it.
Grudem, W. A. (2004). Systematic theology: an introduction to biblical doctrine (pp. 538–539). Leicester, England; Grand Rapids, MI: Inter-Varsity Press; Zondervan Pub. House.

Were the temptations real then? Many theologians have pointed out that only he who successfully resists a temptation to the end most fully feels the force of that temptation. Just as a champion weightlifter who successfully lifts and holds over head the heaviest weight in the contest feels the force of it more fully than one who attempts to lift it and drops it, so any Christian who has successfully faced a temptation to the end knows that that is far more difficult than giving in to it at once. So it was with Jesus: every temptation he faced, he faced to the end, and triumphed over it. The temptations were real, even though he did not give in to them. In fact, they were most real because he did not give in to them.

So, in conclusion:
James 1:13 ESV
Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one.
Jesus felt that maximum weight of sin and temptation on a level we will never face.
Hebrews 12:3–4 ESV
Consider him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted. In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood.
So our conclusion as to the question if Jesus could have sinned is inferred from Scripture but not exactly explicit.

His divine nature could not be tempted with evil, but his human nature could be tempted and was clearly tempted. How these two natures united in one person in facing temptations, Scripture does not clearly explain to us

This is how many other things in Scripture are simply believed by faith. Like the fact that Jesus was conceived by God in the virgin birth or even his humanity and divinity in one person.
Next week we will finish up the Humanity of Christ looking at Why Was Jesus’ Full Humanity Necessary.
Then we will move on to his Divinity.
The hymn this week teaches the Sinlessness of Jesus Christ and it’s application to our faith.
I hope you enjoy this weeks version of “Before the Throne of God Above”
Let’s worship the Sinless, spotless lamb, our perfect righteousness who stands before the throne of God above.
Before the throne of God Above
1
Before the throne of God above I have a strong, a perfect plea; A great High Priest, whose Name is Love, Who ever lives and pleads for me.
2
My name is graven on His hands, My name is written on His heart; I know that while with God He stands No tongue can bid me thence depart.
3
When Satan tempts me to despair, And tells me of the guilt within, Upward I look, and see Him there Who made an end of all my sin.
4
Because the sinless Savior died, My sinful soul is counted free; For God, the Just, is satisfied To look on Him and pardon me.
5
Behold Him there, the risen Lamb! My perfect, spotless Righteousness, The great unchangeable I AM, The King of glory and of grace.
6
One with Himself, I cannot die; My soul is purchased by His blood; My life is hid with Christ on high, With Christ, my Savior and my God.
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