Friday, April 30, 2010

The Nature of Christ

Last night on Facebook, a facebook friend shared information pertaining to his views on the nature of Christ before the incarnation. He was espousing that Christ was 'begotten' by God prior to creation, and that in Proverbs 8, Wisdom is none other than the person of Jesus Christ.  Here are the verses from Proverbs 8 that he used to justify Christ being begotten by God before creation, and that Wisdom is here referring to Christ.  

Proverbs 8:22-36:

22The LORD possessed me in the beginning of his way, before his works of old.

23I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning, or ever the earth was.
24When there were no depths, I was brought forth; when there were no fountains abounding with water.
25Before the mountains were settled, before the hills was I brought forth:
26While as yet he had not made the earth, nor the fields, nor the highest part of the dust of the world.
27When he prepared the heavens, I was there: when he set a compass upon the face of the depth:
28When he established the clouds above: when he strengthened the fountains of the deep:
29When he gave to the sea his decree, that the waters should not pass his commandment: when he appointed the foundations of the earth:
30Then I was by him, as one brought up with him: and I was daily his delight, rejoicing always before him;
31Rejoicing in the habitable part of his earth; and my delights were with the sons of men.
32Now therefore hearken unto me, O ye children: for blessed are they that keep my ways.
33Hear instruction, and be wise, and refuse it not.
34Blessed is the man that heareth me, watching daily at my gates, waiting at the posts of my doors.
35For whoso findeth me findeth life, and shall obtain favour of the LORD.
36But he that sinneth against me wrongeth his own soul: all they that hate me love death.

Below is my response:

Now let me share with you what God has revealed to me about this matter. Now I do not claim to have ALL the answers, because that of itself is impossibility, but I do hope you would at least give some thought to what I am presenting, as I have given to what you presented.

Wisdom as represented in the book of Proverbs is referred to in the female gender (Proverbs 3:13-18; Proverbs 8:1-3; Proverbs 9:1-3; and so on). Wisdom is also represented as being with God from the beginning, and as being “brought forth” from God (Proverbs 8:22-24). Wisdom is therefore a feminine attribute of God, and something which comes from only Him.

God is the embodiment of Wisdom. He is the “only wise God” (Jude 25). All these attributes of God are also to be found in Jesus, who being the Son of God, is also God (John 1:1). Therefore Jesus is correctly described as “the wisdom of God”, because ALL the attributes of God, such as wisdom, are contained in Him (1 Corinthians 1:24; Hebrews 1:2-3; Philliipians 2:7). “For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily” (Colossians 2:9).

God has revealed to us that He is one God with a triune nature – Father, Son and Holy Spirit. “For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one” (1 John 5:7). In the beginning, God said “let US make man in our image; after our likeness” (Genesis 1:26). We have one God who exists as three different entities. Jesus says, “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost” (Matthew 28:19).

Now here is what is revealed concerning the mystery of Christ. It is a little understood concept, but very important. It might be a little hard to grasp, and one will not get it by casual reading of the scriptures, but the author of the book of Hebrews made a very important point. Hebrews 2:5-9:

5For unto the angels hath he not put in subjection the world to come, whereof we speak.
6But one in a certain place testified, saying, What is man, that thou art mindful of him? or the son of man that thou visitest him?
7Thou madest him a little lower than the angels; thou crownedst him with glory and honour, and didst set him over the works of thy hands:
8Thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he put all in subjection under him, he left nothing that is not put under him. But now we see not yet all things put under him.
9But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.

In verses 6 and 7 the author of Hebrews quoted Psalm 8:4-6 and applied that scripture as a prophecy about Christ. Did you notice that he referenced “son of man” in verse 6 of Hebrews 2 as being the same person as Jesus in verse 9 of Hebrews 2? Now this might seem a strange way to interpret Psalm 8, but for the first century Jews, this was not strange at all. In my study of Bible history, I have found that among the first century Jews, there was a sect called the Essenes. The Essenes believed in a coming Messiah who would be a Teacher of righteousness Essenes - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Many of these Essenes were very accepting of Jesus as the Messiah, and many followed Him in His ministry. In the most famous Essenic document/scripture, the Book of Enoch, which by the way pre-dates the incarnation, that Messiah was called the Son of Man.

Therefore, it makes perfect sense that Jesus, who was known as the Son of Man before His incarnation, by the first Century Essenic Jews, should be the Creator of man. We, mankind, were therefore created after, or patterned after the likeness of the Son of Man.

That’s all I have to say right now about the nature of Christ. There is more but this is basically the key element. The nature of Christ after the incarnation is another subject matter as well, and sometimes people confuse the nature of Christ before the incarnation with the nature of Christ after the incarnation. That’s for another time. Keep on searching the scriptures, for in them is life, and they testify of Christ (John 5:39). Blessings!

1 comment:

Daughter of Wisdom said...

Hebrews 2:9 says,"But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death."

This does not mean that Jesus was created by God or that He was a little lower than the angels before His incarnation. This verse is in reference to the Son of Man(Jesus) becoming a human being at His incarnation, and thus made Himself a little lower than the angels, for our sakes.