Getting right with god pt. 3: getting Jesus right
“If you have seen me, you have seen the Father.”
“I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6). Jesus Christ is our Lord and Savior, in simplest terms (not to ever try to simplify or minimize Him in any way…). But what does that mean? There has been so much argument and debate over Jesus and His divinity that it is difficult to know what to believe.
Some think He is God, some think He is a created being, some think He and Lucifer are brothers, and some think He was a regular man, whom God chose, like Noah, to fulfill His righteous cause. Some think Jesus the Son, God the Father, and the Holy Spirit are one being, or they are “triune.” Others find distinct separations between the members of the “Godhead.”
It worries me, a lot, because there are so many more knowledgeable theologians in the world, and their understanding and critical thinking regarding the Scriptures put me to utter shame. I do not know anything. Nobody does. Some might act like it, some will be able to make it sound like they do, but God is too far above us for us to truly understand everything about Him. At least in this life.
To the teaching and to the testimony! If they speak not according to this word it is because there is no light in them!
The word of God says if we do not know or speak the truth, we are not in Christ and we are not in the light. If we do not have the Spirit of Christ, we are none of His (Romans 8:9). Jesus, in speaking with the woman at the well in John 4, rebukes the woman for “not knowing what they worship” (John 4:22). He tells Her that God is “Spirit” and “Truth,” and that the Father is searching for people who will worship Him in that way (4:23-24). There is truth in the word. And we must continually seek it out to worship the Father in the correct way.
Faith comes by hearing. Hearing comes by the word of God. Romans 10:17
Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.
Those who would draw near to God must believe He exists and that He rewards those who seek Him (Hebrews 11:6). God exists. He has existed from the beginning. He created everything. Kind of hard to not create everything if you were not there to make it happen….
But then who is Jesus? Where did He come from? I have been reading and listening much to arguments and opinions on who exactly Jesus Christ is. When I first gave my life to Him, I was listening to the traditional, evangelistic message, that Jesus Christ is the second member of the Holy Trinity, the Son of God, fully God and fully man on Earth. He is God with the completely divine nature yet took on a human nature to become flesh and live among us. I accepted it and worshiped and understood the scriptures based on that teaching. If I were content, I would continue to accept this and argue these points to my dying days. I, of course, will always argue that Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior in God the Father; that is not up for debate at all…
I spent time the other night contemplating the “Trinity” and thought I figured it out. My thoughts were these: God is the Father. He is the Spirit creator of the universe. He is formless and invisible. He is Spirit, like Jesus said in John 4. Jesus is the human manifestation of God. He was the form God took on to become a man on Earth. Though Jesus was a human being, a regular (yet perfect and sinless) person like the rest of us, He was still God. He never stopped knowing everything that was going on in creation. He could read minds, He knew when His healing miracles worked when the victims were nowhere around. He knew it all. As a human, He was the example for how to live the holy, righteous, God-driven life that all should strive for. Perhaps that was why He was often off praying by Himself and taught us to do the same. He thanked God for causing the healings and miracles to happen, and he cried out to God when He was in severe anguish on the cross. Are we not to cry out to God for help when we need Him and His divine help in our lives?
The Holy Spirit was around in the beginning, too, though many seem to overlook the fact that the “Spirit of God” was mentioned in Genesis 1:2… The Spirit is not a new concept. God distributed it freely in the Old Testament. He gave it to Moses (Isaiah 63:11-12), to Joshua (Numbers 27:18), and David (1 Samuel 16:13).
Regarding the Holy Spirit, the best way I can describe it is like the stock market. When we buy stock, we buy a piece of the company. We pay money, and we get a miniscule share of the company. When we give our lives to Jesus Christ (we pay) and we, in turn for our faith, receive the Holy Spirit (a share of God). But God, unlike any company in any stock market, has infinite shares. His market capitalization is never ending. He can give out, and will give out, as many shares of Himself as He chooses, to all those who would put their faith in Jesus Christ, his human representative.
“Question the first!”
-Comic Book Guy (The Simpsons)
I know of one flaw in my argument, and it comes from Matthew 24:36, “But concerning that day and hour, no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only.” Why does Jesus not know when the coming of the Son of Man will be? I have been looking for a good answer for that one for a very long time and I do not think I will ever get one, until (I pray) God will tell me Himself.
“…But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.”
Jesus said He has authority to forgive sins on Earth. Jesus Christ is our advocate with God when we do mess up (1 John 2:1). It is because of Jesus Christ’s sacrifice - His laying down His life for those of his “friends” (John 15:13) – those who keep His commandments – that we are not destined for the eternal, unquenchable fire of the Almighty.
And Jesus gave no new commandments. He only reiterated what the Father had laid out since the beginning. He did, however, embellish and elaborate many for clarity.
“A new commandment I have given you, that you love one another.
Just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.”
New wording perhaps? Or maybe the disciples did not understand the kind of love that Jesus was talking about. The love and connection between Jesus Christ the Son and God the Father, is beyond comprehension and unexplainable. Hence, why the debate over Jesus and his divinity will never be resolved.
In Leviticus 18:19, God the Father tells the people of Israel, “You shall not take vengeance or bear a grudge against the sons of your own people, but you shall love you neighbor as yourself. I am the LORD.”
John, in 1 John 2:7, said he was giving no new commandments, but an old one that was “from the beginning.”
What has been is what will be, and what has been done will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun.
“I am the Alpha and the Omega, says the LORD God, who is and was and who is to come, the Almighty.”
- Revelation 1:8
“Behold, I am coming soon, bringing with me my recompense, to repay everyone for what they have done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.”
It is hard to say without any doubt who or exactly what Jesus Christ is and how He and God the Father fit together. For me, anyway… I am open to new ideas. I am not a “Trinitarian” or a “Unitarian,” or any other “-arian.” I am a follower of Jesus Christ. I have given my life to Him as my Lord and Savior through God the Almighty Creator of us all. I want to know the truth. I never want to stop hungering and thirsting for righteousness and to worship God in Spirit and truth. I may not have the time or intelligence to gain complete comprehension of what, who, and how God and Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit are connected.
But I know they exist and are one in some way. Maybe not thee way most evangelist preachers think, but together they work for our justification, our sanctification, and our salvation.
God gave Jesus Christ, His Son, to die on the cross (John 3:16, 1 Peter 3:8) and through this amazing sacrifice reconciled the world to Himself (2 Corinthians 5).
That is where we start: believing Jesus died for us and God resurrected Him (Romans 10:9). That is when we begin our journey, our new life as the new creations we are in Jesus Christ. We are His friends. We hare God’s children. We are fellow heirs of God’s kingdom with Jesus Christ. To God be glory and praise always!
***LORD, God, please be with us in our studies of you and of Jesus Christ. Your ways are far above ours and we do not have the capacity to truly understand all. But please, give us the Spirit of truth and endurance, that we never would give up on our search.
You promised to show great and hidden things to those who call on you (Jeremiah 33:3). Please show them to me and to all whom you would make yourself known.
You promised those who seek you that they will find you and be known by you. You do not break your promises, LORD. You have kept them all. I await the fulfillment, LORD, to be able to know and understand you, to dwell and inquire of your kingdom when the day comes.
Please, LORD, forgive us of our sins. Take them “as far as the east is from the west,” that they will be remembered by you no more. Help me be stronger against temptations and all things that would hinder our path with you.
For your glory and kingdom I pray, in Jesus Christ’s name, Amen. ***
(This article is not my final word on this, by any means. There is so much to talk about on this subject. I am just very scatterbrained lately, and I have more stuff I want to write about. I hope you are enjoying reading my posts. Let me know what you think. God bless!)