“NEW LIFE” BULLETIN – VOL. 28, NO. 1&2 – JESUS, DID YOU KNOW?
Those who see Jesus as “Fully human and fully divine” more or less believe he knew everything God knew. There are some scriptures that could be used to dispute that. .
What did the writers of the New Testament want their readers to know about Jesus? None of them reduce him to just a sacrifice. In fact, the primary Gospel writers not only center on his character and teaching, but also the resurrection. You don’t need to raise a sacrifice from the dead. In fact, it is the death of the sacrifice that fulfills the demand.
What happened when Jesus was baptized? All three synoptic writers say the Spirit of God descended on him. Did that Spirit “indwell” him, or just sit on him? God sitting on God? What did the voice from heaven mean? Was Jesus talking to himself? Or was this a pivotal moment for this one who is now, for the first time in scripture, called a son of God? And if Jesus was God (“and the word was God.” Jn. 1:1) and God cannot be tempted, (James 1:13) how does that work? This is a good place to show that all things are not completely answerable with scripture. For example, Psalm 106:13-15 says the Israelites tempted God and he gave in to them. Of course, everyone has an explanation for these scriptures based on their own theological foundation.
Looking at the whole scene surrounding Jesus’ temptation, it is impossible to ignore his humanity, as well as how he made his decisions. He never claimed in his answers to the temptations to be God. He claimed to serve God alone.
When did Jesus know he was going to be killed? It would seem from the moment he decided to do the will of God at his baptism and as the result of the temptation. He knew the fate of every prophet who spoke as God wanted. He also knew that no Messiah-types had ever escaped death. In a word, he knew what every reformer knows, what they feel compelled to do is worth the cost of their life. Jesus was in a long line of those who would willingly die for reformation.
It seems to me that Jesus’ goal is often reduced to dying on the cross to appease the wrath of God. By the way, that is never said. And if John 10:30 means anything, Jesus saw he and the Father as being one. So we have God being satisfied about sin by punching himself in the nose.
Jesus’ goal, as stated by him, was to gather Jerusalem (Israel) under his wings as a hen gathers her chicks. Matt. 23:23 & Lk. 13:34. You will also notice that Jesus mentions that they had killed the prophets before him. So was Jesus hoping for repentance, or was he stating what he knew before he was born? If it was all predetermined, why even say he wanted to redeem them?
Then there is the agony in the garden before his arrest as told by Matthew and Luke, “Let this cup pass from me.” So offensive is this idea, that one commentator said it actually meant “Let me drink as deeply from this cup as I possibly can.” Is this God appealing to God?
On the cross, according to Matthew 27:46, Jesus cried out, “My God, my God, Why have you forsaken me?” Matthew could have left that out. Others did. But there it is and it disturbs some people. Was Jesus quoting Psalm 22? Why would he do that? Did God, as some people feel the need to say, turn away from Jesus because God cannot look on sin? If that’s true, then what good is a sin offering if God can’t look at it? The Old Testament says God saw the sin sacrifices and offerings of the people. Another question: Can God forsake God?
Am I making Jesus too human? I don’t think that is possible. There is nothing wrong with being human. It seems to be the way God wanted us to be.
“But Jesus didn’t sin.” Was that because he was God, or because he was all God wanted humans to be? Is there anything Jesus taught which was the will of God that is beyond human doing? If so, how are we to even get close to doing God’s will?
Perfect humanity is also perfect divinity. Jesus said he gave his life to “ransom” us. (Matt.20:28, Mark 10:45) Ransom from what? From what every reformer gives their life for; from life that fails the test of humanity, i.e., sin.
The “oneness” of Jesus and the Father is in Jesus’ “Not my will, but your’s be done.” For that, the New Testament says 24 times, “God raised him up.”That’s the “Christ the Lord” I can follow.
CONCERNS: Teryn Gaynor’s mother is having cancer tests. Update from Teryn today. Martha Albert’s son, John and his family suffered some loss in the Texas tornado. Betty Foy is now back in their apartment at Brandon Oaks. Marjorie Wilson, (cancer) Melanie Gentry (Alisa Flora’s sister Joni Beach’s mother and father, as well as her aunt, Pat Voss and her niece, Jamie Cole. Jim Hunter, Wayne Phlegar, Bill Albert’s son, David. Leena Bolin’s aunt, Lee Nicklas. Sandy Blanchard and those caring for her. Sandy has cancer and has gone blind. She is from the church Del Bolin grew up in. Kim (Hall’s) friend, Mary (MS). Sandra Anderson, Gil Richardson, Deana McRoy, Stephanie Rigney, Jenni Cullum and her friend, Sean, Jim & Mary Smith and Tim Elder.
OUR DAILY BREAD: JAN. 4-9
Monday: Matthew 6:1-18
Tuesday: Psalm 96:1-13
Wednesday: Matthew 6:19-34
Thursday: Luke 23:26-43
Friday: James 1:5-18
Saturday Romans 8:26-39
OUR DAILY BREAD: JAN 11-16
Monday: John 8:21-47
Tuesday: Luke 22:14-30
Wednesday: Luke 12:13-34
Thursday: Psalm 51:1-19
Friday: Acts 4:32-5:11
Saturday Psalm 99:1-9
JOHN HUNTER AND FAMILY
The recent tornado that went through Garland, Texas, passed a few houses from John’s. John is Martha Albert’s son.
After a night of wondering, as they took shelter in the safest room in their house, they were restricted from going outside due to the danger of downed power lines.
When some degree of normal was established, they discovered that a voltage surge or lightening, had destroyed all their electrical appliances. At this time they are getting help from several Church of Christ related agencies, including the CofC disaster Relief folks out of Nashville. We’ll know more as the days pass. Keep them and all those who are suffering in your prayers.
NEW YEAR-NEW CLASS
For several months Del Bolin has taught the Sunday morning adult class. He is now looking a what to study as we enter the new year.
Del’s class is a place where all things religious and spiritual are open for examination and discussion. So the new class will be build on that same structure. One of the ideas put forth is to study the Old Testament in a chronological way. That is, to read the prophetic writings and the recorded historical events at the same time.
THANKS JUDY MCWHORTER
The New England Village Judy McWhorter displays in the annex in her mother’s memory, will be gone soon. It was a real treat for those who got to see it. Thanks Judy.
THE CHRISTMAS EVE SERVICE
We had one of the largest crowds in some time at the Christmas Eve Service. About twenty went to Denny’s afterward.
Next Sunday will be “Adopt a Poinsettia Day.” This year they are very hardy and should do well. Remember, leave the plastic containers under the plants.
THE NEW YEAR
What will 2016 bring? God only knows. On Christmas Eve we sang “Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me. It’s a wonderful thought. Perhaps we can make that more a part of our lives.