Humanity and Divinity of Christ Essays

942 Words Jul 21st, 2013 4 Pages
Joshua Norman
THEO_201_D16_201330
Short Essay #2

Short Essay on the Humanity and Divinity of Jesus Christ

The discussion regarding the humanity and divinity of Jesus Christ has been a matter of debate since the earliest days of Christianity. The post-apostolic church became plagued by different heresies, some of which continue to this day. Generations of scholars have attempted to make sense of the human and divine natures coexisting in Jesus, some claiming that He could not be truly a man, others claiming He could not truly be God; however, the Bible tells us that the people closest to Jesus, the apostles, were convinced that he was truly God and truly man; their evidence was what Jesus said of Himself, what the prophecies said
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Early heresies arose as some scholars attempted to answer these questions, some saying that Jesus wasn’t fully God, and others stating He wasn’t fully man. For example, Apollinaris (ca. 300-315) believed that Jesus was indeed a man, but instead of possessing a soul, as we do, He was possessed by logos. Arius (ca. 250) felt that since God was immutable, there could be no way that the substance of God could be communicated or shared with another being; therefore, Christ was a created being and was not pre-existent. These ideas were dangerous in either overemphasizing or denying the God-man’s attributes. Jesus had to be both God and man; otherwise, His sacrifice would have been insufficient or null. If He were a man with logos instead of a soul, as Apollinaris suggested, Jesus’ death would not have saved our souls. If He were not truly God, made flesh, then His sacrifice would not have saved our flesh. Jesus, therefore, had to be both, to satisfy the demands of a perfect sacrifice and have the power to judge and forgive sins. The ideas that Jesus was anything less than a perfectly joined union of God and man were countered by the Fourth Ecumenical Council in Chalcedon, located in what is now Turkey, in A.D. 451. This council was convened with the purpose of defining the hypostatic union of Jesus’ humanity and divinity and established the Chalcedonian Creed. Hypostatic union is roughly defined as the inseparable union between Jesus’ human and
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