Posted by: Jonathan Stepp | December 28, 2007

Forever With Us

The Son of God lives forever in the flesh, now risen and glorified, he remains Emmanuel (“God with Us”) forever. This is our salvation and hope, that our humanity and human nature has been adopted into the life of the Triune God.

It is also part of what we are rediscovering in the Neo-Reformation. Somewhere along the line American Christianity lost sight of the importance of the forever union of God and humanity through the incarnation of the Son as Jesus Christ. In fact, I am finding people in my congregations who have been Christians all their lives and are not only unaware that the Son lives forever in the flesh they are actually resistant to the idea!

Preparing for my sermon this Sunday I went back and read the Chalcedon Creed again. This statement by the early church is the basis for Catholic, Protestant, and Eastern Orthodox understanding of how the Son remains forever incarnate as Jesus. All our churches hold this doctrine but clearly not all of our pastors and members know it or understand it.

Come, Lord Jesus, and reform your church!

Here’s where you can read the full text of the Chalcedon Creed.

Here’s some relevant quotes describing how the Son is with us forever by uniting himself forever to humanity in Jesus:

. . . our Lord Jesus Christ, at once complete in Godhead and complete in manhood, truly God and truly man, consisting also of a reasonable soul and body; of one substance with the Father as regards his Godhead, and at the same time of one substance with us as regards his manhood . . .

. . . one and the same Christ, Son, Lord, Only-begotten, recognized in two natures, without confusion, without change, without division, without separation; the distinction of natures being in no way annulled by the union, but rather the characteristics of each nature being preserved and coming together to form one person . . .

Advertisements

Responses

  1. I believe you are correct Jonathan in your assessment. Sadly, little is said in many churches concerning the asension of the glorified man Jesus into heaven. Because of that deficit, many hold the false view that Jesus shed his humanity in the resurrection (or perhaps the asension) and returned to being only God (who was formerly human).

    But the good news is that our humanity is forever united with God in and through the person of Jesus. And so now (and forever) humanity is seated with God in heaven. Jesus himself is the “place” prepared for us in heaven (John 14:2).

  2. Thanks for the reminder about the ascension! As Paul says, “God seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus.” (Eph. 2:6)

  3. Thank you for the clarification and emphasis here Jonathan! As a pastor I am embarrassed at how much I have missed emphasizing this point in the past, but so liberated now that I get and preach it!

    I can understand your frustration, too, in trying to help others understand this basic Christian belief! Somewhere, we have “lost” Jesus the God/Man is some immaterial place, and not grasped the significance of our renewed humanity in Him!

    Hey, if it weren’t for dying, getting sick, hurting, or aging negatively, I would love being human forever! 🙂 We truly are fearfully and wonderfully made!

  4. Great point, Pastor Jonathan! In the past, I had never really thought much about this. Of course, I heard it said that “Jesus WAS fully human and fully God,” but I hadn’t thought much about what he was like in heaven. Hey! He is STILL fully human and fully God! Man! Thomas saw that Jesus was still in human form as he inspected Christ’s wounds. And in Luke 24:39 Jesus himself says: “Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself! Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have.” This is the Jesus the disciples saw rise into the heavens!

  5. What a great summary of who Jesus is, thanks Jerome!

  6. […] 1. The Son becoming man meant that Triune God, in the Son, would always be 100% God AND always be 100% Man. We call this the Incarnation, or “God in the Flesh.” This is an amazing, mysterious and crucial Truth (Eph 2:13-16.) This doesn’t mean that the God in Jesus became a man, or that the Man in Jesus became God, rather He was God as Man without mixing up the two natures! […]

  7. Thank God for His Word and the Oecumenical Councils! It is my believe as an Anglican priest and rector that the east has kept these creeds of the Nicene (without the filioque), and Chalcedon. Upon these two councils and creeds stands the Trinity of God, and the great incarnational Christology of Jesus Christ! Bow down my soul!

  8. *belief


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Categories

%d bloggers like this: