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Daniel of Doulogos Name:Daniel
Home: Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
About Me: I used to believe that evolution was reasonable, that homosexuality was genetic, and that people became Christians because they couldn't deal with the 'reality' that this life was all there was. I used to believe, that if there was a heaven - I could get there by being good - and I used to think I was more or less a good person. I was wrong on all counts. One day I finally had my eyes opened and I saw that I was not going to go to heaven, but that I was certainly going to suffer the wrath of God for all my sin. I saw myself as a treasonous rebel at heart - I hated God for creating me just to send me to Hell - and I was wretched beyond my own comprehension. Into this spiritual vacuum Jesus Christ came and he opened my understanding - delivering me from God's wrath into God's grace. I was "saved" as an adult, and now my life is hid in Christ. I am by no means sinless, but by God's grace I am a repenting believer - a born again Christian.
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Tuesday, June 28, 2011
What the fall did to all mankind...
This gadfly gets it.

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posted by Daniel @ 2:11 PM  
  • At 7:36 AM, June 29, 2011, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    How does "Christ's obedience flowed from His pre-existing righteousness" work in tandem with "Christ learned obedience through suffering"? (Hebrews 5:8)

    Can you comment on this for me please? I understand the gadfly's thoughts on a certain level, but I think I'm missing something (or a few things). It's not connecting together for me.


  • At 8:10 AM, June 29, 2011, Blogger Daniel said…

    Anon- I am so glad someone asked this question!

    During the incarnation, Christ existed as a single person with two natures, the human and the divine. We describe this phenomenon as the hypostatic union, but what we mean when we say that is that Jesus was both 100% man and %100 God.

    This stands distinct from the notion of a demigod (part man, part God). Jesus was not a mix of God and man, but His divinity was separate from His humanity, even though both existed in the one person of Christ during the incarnation.

    When Christ "learned obedience" it was not His divine nature that learned obedience, it was His human nature.

    When I speak of Christ's righteousness, it did not flow out of His human nature, rather it flowed into it through His divine (righteous) nature.

    In the same way, we who are born of God, and united together with Christ, are inclined to righteousness, not through our own flesh, but through the Spirit of Christ who indwells us.

    Let me know if this helped. Sometimes I say too much or too little, so I am somties unsure if I have fully answered the question or not.

  • At 8:40 AM, June 29, 2011, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I think that lends some clarity to the issue for me at least.

    As I'm reading now in the book of Acts, RC Sproul's comments re: the term "Son of God" relating more in fact to Jesus' humanity and "Son of Man" (in light of OT understanding) to His divinity - contrary to what we might typically presume - well, your clarification sheds a good light on the subject.

    For me, I might inclined to *not* state that the two natures were “separate,” as much as they might be “distinct” - or am I splitting hairs here?

    I see “separate” as not connected at all, whereas both natures although “distinct” (that is, in my view, unique, but not unconnected), are united. They have a relationship – they touch one another, but are unique/distinct. Does that make sense?

    I'm gleaning from what you write that Christ was fully God and fully man at the same time (as He had to be in order to become a sufficient sacrifice acceptable to God). And yet both natures – both “beings” as it were (perhaps that’s not well stated) were united, were one, while remaining distinct.

    Actually, I’m wondering now if this is not unlike how the Trinity is distinct in that they are three “Persons” but One in essence. Is that right?

    Does this sound close to what you’re saying? I appreciate your clarification.

  • At 9:37 AM, June 29, 2011, Blogger Daniel said…

    Anon - I think it is better to say distinct than separate, but I was writing from the cuff, and so the nuance didn't show itself until you mentioned it, then I wished I had used distinct instead.

    If we can glean, from our understanding of the hypostatic union, the understanding that Christ's divinity was distinct from his humanity, and that both humanity and divinity were attributes of Christ's person, we begin to understand what Christ set aside when He humbled Himself to become a man.

    Jesus set aside the "use" of His divine nature while on earth (He emptied Himself...), such that He lived this life, not as a God/man, but as a man only, being utterly dependant on the Holy Spirit for power and ministry (just as Christian since has been). Christ was the first Annointed One - the Messiah. He did not exercise His own divinity in the incarnation, but humbled Himself, and relied upon God (in the person of the Holy Spirit) to supply every need (and perform every miracle, etc.), just as any other man must. When we get that we can begin to understand, I think, what it means to be a Christian (one who is annointed by the Holy Spirit), and what it meant to be the Christ.

  • At 10:00 AM, June 29, 2011, Blogger Daniel said…

    I should mention that the view that Christ did not exercise His own divinity directly, but was dependant as a man upon the Holy Spirit, was twice anathemized by Cyril in his letter to Nestorius as follows:

    Anathema #4. If anyone distributes between the two persons or hypostases the expressions used either in the gospels or in the apostolic writings, whether they are used by the holy writers of Christ or by him about himself, and ascribes some to him as to a man, thought of separately from the Word from God, and others, as befitting God, to him as to the Word from God the Father, let him be anathema.

    Anathema #9. If anyone says that the one Lord Jesus Christ was glorified by the Spirit, as making use of an alien power that worked through him and as having received from him the power to master unclean spirits and to work divine wonders among people, and does not rather say that it was his own proper Spirit through whom he worked the divine wonders, let him be anathema.

    This letter written by Cyril in answer to the error of Nestorius, was approved by the council of Ephesus in 431 A.D.

    Nestorius, if you will recall, took issue with calling Mary the "Mother of God" - since she did not give birth to Christ's divinity, but only His humanity; and favored the title, "the mother of the Christ" -which some took to be a little too close to the idea that Christ was born a man, then later on became the Word.

    Nestorius was accused of suggesting that Jesus was actually two persons existing in one body, the divine person, and the human person. Whether Nestor actually believed what he was accused of believing, is unclear, but that was what was being answered at the first council of Ephesus.

    I believe that Christ was one person with two distinct natures, the human and the divine, and that Christ, in His humanity, refused to exercise His divine nature - having set the prerogative aside in order to live, truly, as a man, and not as a demigod.

    I mention this lest you think my doctrine on this point rests on the teachings of every early church council. I, like most everyone else, do not agree with every ordinance of every council.

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