Did God come to earth in the flesh?

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Re: Did God come to earth in the flesh?

#16

Post by RickD » Tue Jul 15, 2014 5:12 am

Actually,

Firstborn doesn't necessarily mean born.

In Christ's case, it doesn't mean born. If it did, and He was born, He wouldn't be preexisting, and wouldn't be God. Firstborn is used to show Christ's preeminence, sovereignty, and leadership.

It's the Greek word prototokos.
John 5:24
24 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life.

Kenny wrote:
"You don’t need faith, logic, reason, proof, or anything else to be atheist, all you need to do is reject what someone told you."



St. Richard the Sarcastic--The Patron Saint of Irony

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Re: Did God come to earth in the flesh?

#17

Post by PaulSacramento » Tue Jul 15, 2014 5:32 am

RickD wrote:Actually,

Firstborn doesn't necessarily mean born.

In Christ's case, it doesn't mean born. If it did, and He was born, He wouldn't be preexisting, and wouldn't be God. Firstborn is used to show Christ's preeminence, sovereignty, and leadership.

It's the Greek word prototokos.
Well, not BORN in the human sense of the word, no.
The time-relation issue of Father and Son is a very tricky one since God existed before the universe and since time as we know it ( absolute and relative time) is only applicable in THIS universe.
God being a relational being MUST have Always been as such or He would have changed at some point and, according to some, that would mean that at some point He was not God ( if by God we mean unchangeable).

Perhaps Christ is "son" in the title sense of the word only, that He always was and always will be and son in relation to Father only in the "subordinate sense" and not the "biological" one, BUT that is another thread...

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Re: Did God come to earth in the flesh?

#18

Post by PaulSacramento » Tue Jul 15, 2014 6:18 am

In regards to the "pre-existence", I found this very interesting article by Larry Hurtado:
http://larryhurtado.wordpress.com/2014/ ... questions/

Jesus, “Pre-existence,” etc.: Responding to Questions
May 15, 2014
Well, my postings over the last couple of days have certainly generated a number of responses, including several rather vigorous ones, and have raised some entirely understandable questions. Instead of responding to the comments individually (thereby burying both questions and my responses down in the “comments” material), however, I thought I’d try to address them here in this blog-posting. I’ll try to be as concise as clarity allows, but this will be a somewhat “longish” posting.

1. First, in response to my emphasis that the NT makes God’s actions (esp. in raising Jesus from death and giving him glory) the basis for the “high” Christological claims and the remarkable devotional practice in which Jesus was included with God, what about the Gospel accounts of Jesus’ miracles, authoritative actions, etc.? Doesn’t this suggest that Jesus was actually exercising his divine power during his earthly life?

The first thing to note is what the Gospels and other NT writings portray as the responses to these actions, particularly the more “friendly” responses. For example, in response to Jesus’ questions to his disciples about what people make of him (as portrayed, e.g., in Mark 8:27-30), the options reported are “John the Baptist” (which I take as meaning “another one like John”), Elijah (possibly in part because Jesus’ reported miracles often mirror those attributed to Elijah),”one of the prophets” (the opinion that Jesus was a “prophet” is reported elsewhere in the Gospels also, e.g., John 6:14; and 7:25-30 where people wonder if he is Messiah). And the disciples’ response (on Peter’s lips) was “Messiah/Christ”. There is no statement of deification, no “cultic” worship offered, and Jesus doesn’t demand it, or claim divinity.

In Acts 10:38, in a speech ascribed to Peter, Jesus is referred to as having gone about “doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him.” Note that this statement is in the context of far more exalted claims about Jesus reflective of the “post-Easter” period: e.g., “the one ordained by God as judge of the living and the dead . . . everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name” (10:42-43). So, for the author of Acts, both things are true: Jesus’ earthly ministry was “anointed” and empowered by God (it was not a god working miracles on the earth, as in Greek myths). But, by virtue of God’s resurrection of Jesus (10:40), Jesus is now judge and the one valid medium of salvation (vv. 42-43).

To be sure, there is good reason to think that Jesus was known as a charismatic healer and exorcist, that he acted with a charismatic/prophetic authority in his teaching, that he excited expectations that he was (or was to be ) Messiah. Indeed, it is even not entirely impossible that Jesus could have trusted in the kind of vindication that is expressed in Mark 14:61-64 (although I personally suspect that as reported this statement is seriously reflective of post-Easter convictions about Jesus). But all of this put together doesn’t amount to a direct claim of divine status, of bearing divine glory, and of being worthy of worship.

As I’ve contended in my book, Lord Jesus Christ (53-64), Jesus himself (his actions and their impact on others) was certainly a major factor/force in the subsequent eruption of “Jesus-devotion” reflected in the NT. But the NT writings rather consistently place that eruption in the “post-Easter” period, and base it heavily on God’s exaltation of Jesus and designation of him as “Lord and Christ” (e.g., Acts 2:36), “The Son of God” (e.g., Rom 1:3-4), the glorified ruler (e.g., 1 Cor 15:20ff; 1 Pet 3:22), etc.

2. What about texts such as John 1:1-2, where, of the “Logos” (here, the “pre-incarnate” identity/form of the incarnate Jesus), we read: “he was with God and he was God”? Well, the first thing to emphasize is that both statements have to be read together, and taking the one without the other results in a serious loss of meaning. The Logos here is portrayed as both “with” God (i.e., distinguishable from “God” albeit in closest relation to God) and “was God” (i.e., in some way partaking of this status). The next statement helps “unpack” this a bit: The Logos was the agent of creation. Creation in biblical perspective is God’s act, and so positing the Logos as the agency through whom God created “all things” places the Logos outside of “all things” and into the action of God. But note that the Logos is the agent/medium of creation, “God” remaining the creator in ultimate sense. (This distinction remained pretty central even in much later creedal developments.)

This role as agent of creation, by the way, isn’t original or confined to GJohn. Decades earlier it is affirmed in 1 Corinthians 8:4-6, where explicitly the “Lord Jesus Christ” is posited as the one “through whom are all things and we are through him” (to render the Greek somewhat woodenly). Here, likewise, the “one God the Father” is the one “from who are all things and we (are) for him” (“God the Father” the creator and the ultimate destiny of believers).

3. What are we supposed to make of statements ascribing “pre-existence” to Jesus (to use the typical theological buzzword)? If you entertain these, how could Jesus not have known this and spoken of it?

First, a historical note: The ascription of “pre-existence” to Jesus wasn’t a late development, but appears already presupposed in texts as early as the 1 Cor 8:4-6 text cited above, and also, e.g., in the famous passage in Philippians 2:6-11 (esp. vv. 6-8). (Interesting to note Bart Ehrman’s recognition of this in his new book, and his admission that it took him by surprise and required him to correct earlier suppositions.) Indeed, we can’t really chart some evolutionary scheme in the earliest explosion of Christological beliefs. It all happened so quickly that by the time of Paul’s letters (written scarcely 15-20 yrs after Jesus’ execution) it’s all presupposed as long and widely known among believers.

But how could people ascribe a heavenly “pre-existence” to a real human and mortal figure of recent history? To understand this, you have to enter into the “logic” of ancient theological thought, and especially “apocalyptic” thought. I’ll sketch it briefly. God doesn’t make up his game-plan as the game goes along, but has the plan (of world history, redemption, judgement, etc.) all laid out even before creation. So, as God acts in revelation, each action is also an unveiling of his prior purpose and plan. So, “eschatological” events were actually in God’s purpose from the beginning: “final things = first things” (to paraphrase a scholarly formula). Indeed, in ancient Jewish texts there are references to various things, e.g., Torah, or the “name” of the messianic figure in the “Parables” of 1 Enoch (37-70) as “pre-existent” (see, e.g., my article, “Pre-Existence,” in the Dictionary of Paul and His Letters, eds. G.F. Hawthorne, et al., pp. 743-46 (and bibliography there).

So, in this case, if Jesus has been vindicated by God and exalted to heavenly glory, made Lord and judge, declared to be “the Son of God,” and the unique redeemer, then in some sense this is the eschatological revelation and articulation of what must have been God’s purpose, and the revelation of heavenly realities, from before creation. As various other scholars as well have observed, the conviction that Jesus had been exalted to heavenly/divine glory seems to have triggered the logical corollary that he must, in some sense, have been “there” from the beginning, and that God’s redemption work is tied closely to God’s creation work. (Note that NT statements about Jesus’ “pre-existence” are essentially confined to connecting him to creation, and there is scant interest in speculations about what else his “pre-existence” involved. There, isn’t in other words, the proliferation of elaborate “myth” narratives about the matter such as we have in the classic Greek myths of the gods.)

But the NT also, even more emphatically, insists that Jesus of Nazareth was a real, mortal, human being, not a “god-in-drag” walking the earth, only pretending to eat, sleep, die, etc. (in contrast, e.g., to the angel Raphael in Tobit). “Born of a woman” declares Paul (Gal. 4:4), and “crucified and buried” is a pretty sure indication of things! Moreover, the NT doesn’t present Jesus as raising himself from death, as if by his own innate divine power, but declares Jesus was raised by God (e.g., 1 Thess 1:9-10).

As a human, say the NT texts, Jesus was only able to declare what God had revealed to him (even, perhaps especially, in the Gospel of John, e.g., 5:30-38). He is pictured as empowered by God (via God’s Spirit) for his ministry (e.g., the descent of the Spirit in the baptism scenes). He declares ignorance of “the day or hour” of eschatological consummation (Mark 13:32, a text that clearly troubled some early readers, as the variant readings show). It has been a common mistake to assume that if Jesus bears divine glory, status, etc., now (in Christian faith), and if in some sense he was “pre-existent”, then this must have affected (or even limited) how he could have been truly human. To think this, however, is both to ignore the NT texts, and (in theological terms) to descend into a kind of heresy (classically called, “Docetism”). Indeed, in later creedal statements, “orthodox” Christian “Fathers” often declared “that which the Son did not take on him self he cannot redeem” (meaning that a fully human Jesus was necessary for him to be an adequate redeemer of humans, an emphasis that actually emerged as early as Hebrews 2:5-18). In short, ascribing to Jesus divine honour, status, glory, etc., in the NT texts was never at the expense of Jesus being truly, fully, human. The statement in John 1:14 bears as much force as the statement in 1:1-2. “The Word became flesh” (i.e., fully, mortal human). And so, e.g., operating within the knowledge available to humans, whether about themselves or anything else.

4. What about subsequent creedal controversies and formulations? E.g., the three “persons” (or “hypostases”) that comprise the “Trinity,” etc.?

To my mind, these should be seen as valiant and impressive attempts by Christians living in later (than the NT texts) times, engaging and appropriating conceptual categories of those later times, to address questions and issues that had arisen then. But these conceptual categories and issues weren’t always the same ones that we find in the NT texts. E.g., referring to “persons” of the “Father” and the “Son” seems to have emerged sometime in the 2nd century (e.g., Justin Martyr’s references to the “prosopon” of the Son or the Father (literally = “face”, the Latin “persona” a subsequent attempt at an equivalent term). Simply reciting NT terms and expressions wasn’t sufficient (and is never sufficient for the theological task, to my mind). The questions had shifted, and the conceptual categories (heavily shaped by Greek philosophy) were different (the NT texts still heavily steeped in biblical/Jewish categories), and couldn’t rightly be avoided.

But I suspect that if Paul were asked whether Jesus was the “second person of the Trinity,” he would likely have responded with a quizzical look, and asked for some explanation of what it meant! Were the patristic texts and creedal statements saying something beyond or distinguishable from what the NT texts say? Certainly. Does that invalidate those later creedal discussions and formulations? Well, if you recognize the necessity of the continuing theological task (of intelligently attempting to articulate Christian faith meaningfully in terms appropriate and understandable in particular times and cultures), then probably you’ll see the classic creedal statements as an appropriate such effort. But that’s a historical judgement about that later period, and/or a theological judgement. And my emphasis is on the historical question of what the NT texts say and how to understand them in their own historical context.

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Re: Did God come to earth in the flesh?

#19

Post by SeekingSanctuary » Tue Jul 15, 2014 7:45 am

Domenic wrote:No, that is not what I said. Nor how I come to a conclusion...I let Father show me via scripture what he is saying. Do you ever talk to father?
Yes.

Now we're getting somewhere. First of all, how do you separate what God is telling you and your own personal biases? Secondly, You mentioned before that you don't believe the letters of Paul were inspired by God. How do you tell what parts of the Bible are inspired by God?

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Re: Did God come to earth in the flesh?

#20

Post by Domenic » Tue Jul 15, 2014 8:07 am

I read you post Paul.
I come away with the feeling you are going in two directions, as you try to steer a straight course. I feel you are attempting to mate evaluation, and creation to satisfy a belief in a creator, and Darwin. I may be wrong, but it is what I feel.
As to Jesus being with the Father before creation, you are correct. Jesus was there before creation. He had to be. All things were created by God the Father, through Jesus.
How long was Jesus with the Father before Creation. We won’t have an answer to that question until we can ask Jesus after he returns.
Father always was…which is mind blowing to my little brain…I just put that aside, and tell myself…“I won’t trouble myself with that for now…I do not have to know everything.”
The scriptures say Jesus was the first born of all creation. This is something Father had to do. To me that is a sound indication Jesus had a beginning, whereas Father did not.
Did Father start creation through Jesus, then let it all develop on its own? I have walked down that path to see where my reasoning would take me.
I read the sign posted at head of that path. Let me read it to you;
“Father is a God of order. He does not start something, than leave it to tend on its own, He brings everything to a conclusion by his own hand.”

I see you are a writer. I write also. It is a good way to look deep into who we are…or go crazy trying. I have completed five books. Book number six I started in 1999. It makes me wish I had taken up ping ponk, or something. I’m sure you understand what I’m saying.

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Re: Did God come to earth in the flesh?

#21

Post by PaulSacramento » Tue Jul 15, 2014 8:15 am

Domenic wrote:I read you post Paul.
I come away with the feeling you are going in two directions, as you try to steer a straight course. I feel you are attempting to mate evaluation, and creation to satisfy a belief in a creator, and Darwin. I may be wrong, but it is what I feel.
As to Jesus being with the Father before creation, you are correct. Jesus was there before creation. He had to be. All things were created by God the Father, through Jesus.
How long was Jesus with the Father before Creation. We won’t have an answer to that question until we can ask Jesus after he returns.
Father always was…which is mind blowing to my little brain…I just put that aside, and tell myself…“I won’t trouble myself with that for now…I do not have to know everything.”
The scriptures say Jesus was the first born of all creation. This is something Father had to do. To me that is a sound indication Jesus had a beginning, whereas Father did not.
Did Father start creation through Jesus, then let it all develop on its own? I have walked down that path to see where my reasoning would take me.
I read the sign posted at head of that path. Let me read it to you;
“Father is a God of order. He does not start something, than leave it to tend on its own, He brings everything to a conclusion by his own hand.”

I see you are a writer. I write also. It is a good way to look deep into who we are…or go crazy trying. I have completed five books. Book number six I started in 1999. It makes me wish I had taken up ping ponk, or something. I’m sure you understand what I’m saying.
Not sure where you go evolution from my post...

We have to be very careful when stating that there was a point in existence where The Father was NOT with The Son.
If God "had" to create the Son as you suggest, it means that God was NOT complete or was in NEED of something ( The Son) and a given point in His Eternity, which means He is NOT God for God doesn't NEED anything or HAVE to anything.

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Re: Did God come to earth in the flesh?

#22

Post by Domenic » Tue Jul 15, 2014 8:19 am

Paul,
Where did you get the idea God doesn't need anything, or have to (have) anything?

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Re: Did God come to earth in the flesh?

#23

Post by melanie » Tue Jul 15, 2014 9:32 am

PaulSacramento wrote:In regards to the "pre-existence", I found this very interesting article by Larry Hurtado:
http://larryhurtado.wordpress.com/2014/ ... questions/

Jesus, “Pre-existence,” etc.: Responding to Questions
May 15, 2014
Well, my postings over the last couple of days have certainly generated a number of responses, including several rather vigorous ones, and have raised some entirely understandable questions. Instead of responding to the comments individually (thereby burying both questions and my responses down in the “comments” material), however, I thought I’d try to address them here in this blog-posting. I’ll try to be as concise as clarity allows, but this will be a somewhat “longish” posting.

1. First, in response to my emphasis that the NT makes God’s actions (esp. in raising Jesus from death and giving him glory) the basis for the “high” Christological claims and the remarkable devotional practice in which Jesus was included with God, what about the Gospel accounts of Jesus’ miracles, authoritative actions, etc.? Doesn’t this suggest that Jesus was actually exercising his divine power during his earthly life?

The first thing to note is what the Gospels and other NT writings portray as the responses to these actions, particularly the more “friendly” responses. For example, in response to Jesus’ questions to his disciples about what people make of him (as portrayed, e.g., in Mark 8:27-30), the options reported are “John the Baptist” (which I take as meaning “another one like John”), Elijah (possibly in part because Jesus’ reported miracles often mirror those attributed to Elijah),”one of the prophets” (the opinion that Jesus was a “prophet” is reported elsewhere in the Gospels also, e.g., John 6:14; and 7:25-30 where people wonder if he is Messiah). And the disciples’ response (on Peter’s lips) was “Messiah/Christ”. There is no statement of deification, no “cultic” worship offered, and Jesus doesn’t demand it, or claim divinity.

In Acts 10:38, in a speech ascribed to Peter, Jesus is referred to as having gone about “doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him.” Note that this statement is in the context of far more exalted claims about Jesus reflective of the “post-Easter” period: e.g., “the one ordained by God as judge of the living and the dead . . . everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name” (10:42-43). So, for the author of Acts, both things are true: Jesus’ earthly ministry was “anointed” and empowered by God (it was not a god working miracles on the earth, as in Greek myths). But, by virtue of God’s resurrection of Jesus (10:40), Jesus is now judge and the one valid medium of salvation (vv. 42-43).

To be sure, there is good reason to think that Jesus was known as a charismatic healer and exorcist, that he acted with a charismatic/prophetic authority in his teaching, that he excited expectations that he was (or was to be ) Messiah. Indeed, it is even not entirely impossible that Jesus could have trusted in the kind of vindication that is expressed in Mark 14:61-64 (although I personally suspect that as reported this statement is seriously reflective of post-Easter convictions about Jesus). But all of this put together doesn’t amount to a direct claim of divine status, of bearing divine glory, and of being worthy of worship.

As I’ve contended in my book, Lord Jesus Christ (53-64), Jesus himself (his actions and their impact on others) was certainly a major factor/force in the subsequent eruption of “Jesus-devotion” reflected in the NT. But the NT writings rather consistently place that eruption in the “post-Easter” period, and base it heavily on God’s exaltation of Jesus and designation of him as “Lord and Christ” (e.g., Acts 2:36), “The Son of God” (e.g., Rom 1:3-4), the glorified ruler (e.g., 1 Cor 15:20ff; 1 Pet 3:22), etc.

2. What about texts such as John 1:1-2, where, of the “Logos” (here, the “pre-incarnate” identity/form of the incarnate Jesus), we read: “he was with God and he was God”? Well, the first thing to emphasize is that both statements have to be read together, and taking the one without the other results in a serious loss of meaning. The Logos here is portrayed as both “with” God (i.e., distinguishable from “God” albeit in closest relation to God) and “was God” (i.e., in some way partaking of this status). The next statement helps “unpack” this a bit: The Logos was the agent of creation. Creation in biblical perspective is God’s act, and so positing the Logos as the agency through whom God created “all things” places the Logos outside of “all things” and into the action of God. But note that the Logos is the agent/medium of creation, “God” remaining the creator in ultimate sense. (This distinction remained pretty central even in much later creedal developments.)

This role as agent of creation, by the way, isn’t original or confined to GJohn. Decades earlier it is affirmed in 1 Corinthians 8:4-6, where explicitly the “Lord Jesus Christ” is posited as the one “through whom are all things and we are through him” (to render the Greek somewhat woodenly). Here, likewise, the “one God the Father” is the one “from who are all things and we (are) for him” (“God the Father” the creator and the ultimate destiny of believers).

3. What are we supposed to make of statements ascribing “pre-existence” to Jesus (to use the typical theological buzzword)? If you entertain these, how could Jesus not have known this and spoken of it?

First, a historical note: The ascription of “pre-existence” to Jesus wasn’t a late development, but appears already presupposed in texts as early as the 1 Cor 8:4-6 text cited above, and also, e.g., in the famous passage in Philippians 2:6-11 (esp. vv. 6-8). (Interesting to note Bart Ehrman’s recognition of this in his new book, and his admission that it took him by surprise and required him to correct earlier suppositions.) Indeed, we can’t really chart some evolutionary scheme in the earliest explosion of Christological beliefs. It all happened so quickly that by the time of Paul’s letters (written scarcely 15-20 yrs after Jesus’ execution) it’s all presupposed as long and widely known among believers.

But how could people ascribe a heavenly “pre-existence” to a real human and mortal figure of recent history? To understand this, you have to enter into the “logic” of ancient theological thought, and especially “apocalyptic” thought. I’ll sketch it briefly. God doesn’t make up his game-plan as the game goes along, but has the plan (of world history, redemption, judgement, etc.) all laid out even before creation. So, as God acts in revelation, each action is also an unveiling of his prior purpose and plan. So, “eschatological” events were actually in God’s purpose from the beginning: “final things = first things” (to paraphrase a scholarly formula). Indeed, in ancient Jewish texts there are references to various things, e.g., Torah, or the “name” of the messianic figure in the “Parables” of 1 Enoch (37-70) as “pre-existent” (see, e.g., my article, “Pre-Existence,” in the Dictionary of Paul and His Letters, eds. G.F. Hawthorne, et al., pp. 743-46 (and bibliography there).

So, in this case, if Jesus has been vindicated by God and exalted to heavenly glory, made Lord and judge, declared to be “the Son of God,” and the unique redeemer, then in some sense this is the eschatological revelation and articulation of what must have been God’s purpose, and the revelation of heavenly realities, from before creation. As various other scholars as well have observed, the conviction that Jesus had been exalted to heavenly/divine glory seems to have triggered the logical corollary that he must, in some sense, have been “there” from the beginning, and that God’s redemption work is tied closely to God’s creation work. (Note that NT statements about Jesus’ “pre-existence” are essentially confined to connecting him to creation, and there is scant interest in speculations about what else his “pre-existence” involved. There, isn’t in other words, the proliferation of elaborate “myth” narratives about the matter such as we have in the classic Greek myths of the gods.)

But the NT also, even more emphatically, insists that Jesus of Nazareth was a real, mortal, human being, not a “god-in-drag” walking the earth, only pretending to eat, sleep, die, etc. (in contrast, e.g., to the angel Raphael in Tobit). “Born of a woman” declares Paul (Gal. 4:4), and “crucified and buried” is a pretty sure indication of things! Moreover, the NT doesn’t present Jesus as raising himself from death, as if by his own innate divine power, but declares Jesus was raised by God (e.g., 1 Thess 1:9-10).

As a human, say the NT texts, Jesus was only able to declare what God had revealed to him (even, perhaps especially, in the Gospel of John, e.g., 5:30-38). He is pictured as empowered by God (via God’s Spirit) for his ministry (e.g., the descent of the Spirit in the baptism scenes). He declares ignorance of “the day or hour” of eschatological consummation (Mark 13:32, a text that clearly troubled some early readers, as the variant readings show). It has been a common mistake to assume that if Jesus bears divine glory, status, etc., now (in Christian faith), and if in some sense he was “pre-existent”, then this must have affected (or even limited) how he could have been truly human. To think this, however, is both to ignore the NT texts, and (in theological terms) to descend into a kind of heresy (classically called, “Docetism”). Indeed, in later creedal statements, “orthodox” Christian “Fathers” often declared “that which the Son did not take on him self he cannot redeem” (meaning that a fully human Jesus was necessary for him to be an adequate redeemer of humans, an emphasis that actually emerged as early as Hebrews 2:5-18). In short, ascribing to Jesus divine honour, status, glory, etc., in the NT texts was never at the expense of Jesus being truly, fully, human. The statement in John 1:14 bears as much force as the statement in 1:1-2. “The Word became flesh” (i.e., fully, mortal human). And so, e.g., operating within the knowledge available to humans, whether about themselves or anything else.

4. What about subsequent creedal controversies and formulations? E.g., the three “persons” (or “hypostases”) that comprise the “Trinity,” etc.?

To my mind, these should be seen as valiant and impressive attempts by Christians living in later (than the NT texts) times, engaging and appropriating conceptual categories of those later times, to address questions and issues that had arisen then. But these conceptual categories and issues weren’t always the same ones that we find in the NT texts. E.g., referring to “persons” of the “Father” and the “Son” seems to have emerged sometime in the 2nd century (e.g., Justin Martyr’s references to the “prosopon” of the Son or the Father (literally = “face”, the Latin “persona” a subsequent attempt at an equivalent term). Simply reciting NT terms and expressions wasn’t sufficient (and is never sufficient for the theological task, to my mind). The questions had shifted, and the conceptual categories (heavily shaped by Greek philosophy) were different (the NT texts still heavily steeped in biblical/Jewish categories), and couldn’t rightly be avoided.

But I suspect that if Paul were asked whether Jesus was the “second person of the Trinity,” he would likely have responded with a quizzical look, and asked for some explanation of what it meant! Were the patristic texts and creedal statements saying something beyond or distinguishable from what the NT texts say? Certainly. Does that invalidate those later creedal discussions and formulations? Well, if you recognize the necessity of the continuing theological task (of intelligently attempting to articulate Christian faith meaningfully in terms appropriate and understandable in particular times and cultures), then probably you’ll see the classic creedal statements as an appropriate such effort. But that’s a historical judgement about that later period, and/or a theological judgement. And my emphasis is on the historical question of what the NT texts say and how to understand them in their own historical context.
I found this very interesting also, thanks for posting Paul
The position of Jesus's pre-existence moves into compelling territory when you look at scripture closely and take into account that for God everything is omnipresent, existence how we view it moves in timeframes but for God this is not the case. He knows all, even all those saved in 'the book of life' though many would not actually exist for thousands of years were known to the Father, present in a timeless existence for Him. We try to comprehend what is almost incomprehensible, applying our logic to God's plan, an almost impossible task. The early Church tried with I believe sincerity to tackle inconcievable ideas and we have not for the most part stepped outside these preconceived ideas as they are just as incogitable now as they ever were.

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Re: Did God come to earth in the flesh?

#24

Post by Lonewolf » Tue Jul 15, 2014 4:17 pm

Domenic wrote:.. I say Jesus is a God, the first born, created by the Father. ...
Dom, I you would please, explain to me how do you come to the conclusion that created being(s) can be "gods" ??? In what scripture do you find this teaching?

And why would God spend the whole Old Testament warning about false gods, and teaching that besides Him there is no other God?

I'd like to read where you coming from on this subject. Thanx.

SOLOxLOBO :cheers:
Your outward profession of having put on Christ, has as yet to put off Plato from your heart!

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Re: Did God come to earth in the flesh?

#25

Post by Domenic » Tue Jul 15, 2014 7:20 pm

PaulSacramento wrote:
Domenic wrote:
PaulSacramento wrote:
Domenic wrote:
1over137 wrote:Question for you Domenic: what God the Father has that the Son does not have? You think Son was created. What God the Father posses that the Son does not? I mean in character, power, their attributes, etc.
Father made the son just like himself. It is Father who is the first, and the last...without Father no creation is anything.
You can believe Jesus is the Father. You can teach Jesus is the father...you can take Father out of the picture, and replace him with Jesus...you can say anything you want...you will see what you believe, and teach when Father send his son back. By the way, when Jesus was asked, "When will these things happen?" did not Jesus say, "Only the Father knows."
If like you believe, Jesus is the fater, how come he did not know?
This is the last time we will be telling you this Dominic simply because it is getting very tiresome:
NO ONE HERE is stating that Jesus is His Father, period.
If you continue with this false representation of what is being posted here, you will be banned.
Understood?
Well before you ban me, please explain... you say Jesus is God. I say Jesus is a God, the first born, created by the Father. You say Jesus is not the Father..okay. I say the father is God, creator of all things. The father of Jesus. Who do you say the father is?
You have been speaking of who Jesus is, but you have never said who the father is...
Domenic, for the last time, please try to understand that FIRST BORN does NOT mean created. Created means created, born means born, got it?
I mean if we can't get beyond that very obvious point then the rest is, quite honestly, pointless.

To create:
cre·ate
krēˈāt/Submit
verb
bring (something) into existence.
"he created a thirty-acre lake"
synonyms: produce, generate, bring into being, make, fabricate, fashion, build, construct; More
cause (something) to happen as a result of one's actions.
"divorce only created problems for children"

God created Adam.

To be born:
first·born
ˈfərstˌbôrn/Submit
adjective
adjective: first-born
1.
(of a person's child) the first to be born; the eldest.

It is what it is.

The divine logos, the word of God that became flesh was BORN of God, not created.
All that was created was created through and for Christ. Since ALL of creation was created through Christ and, according to YOU Christ was created, then Christ created Himself ??

Dude...
Dude? Let me brake down the scripture for you. I do understand how many people read it. It was written telling two events, and has to be viewed as two events:
God creates Jesus
Through Jesus God creates everything else.

Colossians 1:15
“He is the image of the invisible God, THE FIRST BORN OF ALL CREATION; by means of him all other things were created in the Heavens and upon the earth, the things visible and the things invisible, no matter whether they are thrones or lordship or governments or authorities. All (other) things have been created through him and for him.

Colossians 1:15

1) THE FIRST BORN OF ALL CREATION;
2) by means of him all other things were created

1) We have two words that seem to be in conflict, Born, and Created. Three thing are for certain here...he was either Born, Created, or both.

2) After he was..one or all of the above three...it was by means of him that ALL OTHER things were created.
Since all things were created by God through Jesus...Jesus was there at the beginning of creation with God. This is why Jesus is called the first Born of all Creation to show Jesus was with Father before all other things were created.

That is hard for me to explain, so if you don't understand how I said it, I'll try again...Dude.

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Re: Did God come to earth in the flesh?

#26

Post by SeekingSanctuary » Tue Jul 15, 2014 7:34 pm

You never did get back to me, Dom, so I'll ask you one of my two questions again.

Dom, how do you decide what you think is inspired by God and what do you think isn't?

I ask because before you've mentioned that you do not believe the letters of Paul were inspired by God. Yet, so far, the main thing you're using to support your beliefs is a single verse in one those very letters.

Do you feel that Mathew, Mark, Luke, John, Acts, or the Book of Revelations are Inspired Texts?

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Re: Did God come to earth in the flesh?

#27

Post by Domenic » Tue Jul 15, 2014 9:08 pm

SeekingSanctuary wrote:You never did get back to me, Dom, so I'll ask you one of my two questions again.

Dom, how do you decide what you think is inspired by God and what do you think isn't?

I ask because before you've mentioned that you do not believe the letters of Paul were inspired by God. Yet, so far, the main thing you're using to support your beliefs is a single verse in one those very letters.

Do you feel that Mathew, Mark, Luke, John, Acts, or the Book of Revelations are Inspired Texts?
i don't like to cover the same ground twice...you will find your answer on the thread..."Your time on Patmos"

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Re: Did God come to earth in the flesh?

#28

Post by SeekingSanctuary » Tue Jul 15, 2014 9:20 pm

Domenic wrote:
SeekingSanctuary wrote:You never did get back to me, Dom, so I'll ask you one of my two questions again.

Dom, how do you decide what you think is inspired by God and what do you think isn't?

I ask because before you've mentioned that you do not believe the letters of Paul were inspired by God. Yet, so far, the main thing you're using to support your beliefs is a single verse in one those very letters.

Do you feel that Mathew, Mark, Luke, John, Acts, or the Book of Revelations are Inspired Texts?
i don't like to cover the same ground twice...you will find your answer on the thread..."Your time on Patmos"
Yes, and I found out historians have contention over the book of Revelations, that reading prophecies that have already been fulfilled is good for my faith, and that the Bible was badly put together (yet we should still have faith in), nothing that answers my root question.

How do you decide what you think is inspired by God and what isn't?

Also, how do you feel about the other books I mentioned? You say to test everything, but test them against what?

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Re: Did God come to earth in the flesh?

#29

Post by Domenic » Tue Jul 15, 2014 9:53 pm

SeekingSanctuary wrote:
Domenic wrote:
SeekingSanctuary wrote:You never did get back to me, Dom, so I'll ask you one of my two questions again.

Dom, how do you decide what you think is inspired by God and what do you think isn't?

I ask because before you've mentioned that you do not believe the letters of Paul were inspired by God. Yet, so far, the main thing you're using to support your beliefs is a single verse in one those very letters.

Do you feel that Mathew, Mark, Luke, John, Acts, or the Book of Revelations are Inspired Texts?
i don't like to cover the same ground twice...you will find your answer on the thread..."Your time on Patmos"
Yes, and I found out historians have contention over the book of Revelations, that reading prophecies that have already been fulfilled is good for my faith, and that the Bible was badly put together (yet we should still have faith in), nothing that answers my root question.

How do you decide what you think is inspired by God and what isn't?

Also, how do you feel about the other books I mentioned? You say to test everything, but test them against what?
Why do you ask me these questions? Jesus is our teacher...it is him you should be asking. If you are looking to have a Bible study, there are many on this forum that will help you.

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Re: Did God come to earth in the flesh?

#30

Post by B. W. » Tue Jul 15, 2014 10:19 pm

I am posting this link to a series of post that shows from the OT how Jesus spoke in the OT and therefore preexisted.

http://discussions.godandscience.org/vi ... 22&t=33317

Next, Dominic, you left one cult for another - a oneness cult. Not sure which oneness cult you are in but with the serpent seed doctrine you hold - that points to one that is no good. Are you part of Westburro? A Branhamite? White or Black Supremacist group? Doesn't matter as your words drip with venom.

I would suggest that that you actually brush up on Christian Apologetics and learn to think and reason.

The Simplicity of the matter is: Only God can save, no other God, therefore, Jesus is God because he saves and is worshiped as well. For Jesus to be God, means he preexisted as God and the doctrine of the Trinty is true, after all, as it is written: "Behold, I am the LORD, the God of all flesh. Is there anything too hard for Me?" Jer 32:27 NASB

He most certainly can come in the Flesh. The the 2nd person of the one God most certainly could because there is none like God as Isa 46:9 states,therefore, God's oneness has to be absolutely unlike our concept of oneness for there to be truly none like Him. In fact the preexistence Jesus mentioned this about himself in the OT, as well as the Father and Holy Spirit too. Where?

Isa 43:10 "You are My witnesses," says the LORD, "And My servant whom I have chosen, That you may know and believe Me, And understand that I am He. Before Me there was no God formed, Nor shall there be after Me."

Isa 7:14 Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel.

Isa 9:6 For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Isa 45:21 Tell and bring forth your case; Yes, let them take counsel together. Who has declared this from ancient time? Who has told it from that time? Have not I, the LORD? And there is no other God besides Me, A just God and a Savior; There is none besides Me.

And in the New which matches the Old in Isa 45:22-23 in:

Philippians 2:5-11 Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, 6 who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, 7 but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. 9 Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, 11 and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.


Problem is for oneness folks is that they do not understand monogenese or that the the Messiah spoken of in the Bible (OT) would be God himself, joining with Humanity as a son of man so we can become his adopted sons and daughters of God. Oneness folks do take the bible concerning Jesus illiterately... y:-?

God did say this - "Before Me there was no God formed, Nor shall there be after Me.." For that to remain true for the unchanging God who keeps his word and lies not would mean that by creating another in flesh that would be worshiped and extolled as equal with God even in heaven as Rev 5:12-13 would be contradictory to God's own word spoken long ago. It stands to reason that Jesus is God manifest in Human Flesh because only God can save from sins. Jesus spoke of this in Isaiah and the Prophets and even in the Torah...

Religious pride and Pharisee-ism runs deep in Oneness Only groups.
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Bible quotes form NASB and NKJV
Science is man's invention - creation is God's
(by B. W. Melvin)

Old Polish Proverb:
Not my Circus....not my monkeys

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