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Don Stewart :: How Could Christ Be God and Human at the Same Time? (The Communion of Attributes)

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Don Stewart

The attributes of both two natures of Jesus Christ were expressed in the one Person. There was no mixing of the natures or any division of his Person. He was one united person with both human and divine attributes. This is known as the communion of the attributes. The fact that Christ had attributes of both of God and humanity is clearly taught in Scripture.

1. Jesus Worshipped God, Yet He Received Worship As God

Jesus is worshipped as God.

Thomas answered and said to him [Jesus], "My Lord and my God!" (John 20:28).

In his high priestly prayer Jesus worshipped the Father.

I have brought you glory on earth by completing the work you gave me to do (John 17:4).

2. Jesus Is Called God, Yet He Was Human

Jesus is God the Son.

In the beginning was the word, and the word was with God, and the word was God (John 1:1).

Though Jesus was called God He was also called a human. The centurion at Jesus' crucifixion testified to His humanity.

When the centurion, who was standing right in front of him, saw the way he breathed his last, he said, "Truly this man was the Son of God!" (Mark 15:39).

3. He Is The Son Of God And The Son Of Man

He was called the Son of God.

The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God (Mark 1:1).

Jesus called Himself the Son of Man.

Just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life a ransom for many (Matthew 20:28).

4. Jesus The Fullness Of Deity But He Had A Body Of Flesh And Bones

The fullness of deity dwelt in Him.

For in him all the fullness of Deity dwells in bodily form (Colossians 2:9).

Jesus had a body of flesh and bones. Jesus said on the day of His resurrection.

See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself; touch me and see, for a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have (Luke 24:39).

5. Jesus Existed Before Abraham, Yet He Was Born During The Reign Of Augustus Caesar

Jesus was said to have existed before Abraham.

Jesus said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was born, I am" (John 8:58).

Yet He was born in the reign of Tiberius Caesar.

While they were there, the days were completed for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son; and she wrapped him in cloths, and laid him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn (Luke 2:6,7).

6. Jesus Knew All Things, Yet Grew In Wisdom

Jesus knew all things.

The third time he said to him, "Simon son of John, do you love me?" Peter was hurt because Jesus asked him the third time, "Do you love me?" He said, "Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you." Jesus said, "Feed my sheep (John 21:17).

In Luke we read that Jesus grew in wisdom.

And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men (Luke 2:52).

7. Jesus Was Without Sin, Yet He Was Tempted

Jesus was without sin.

For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are - yet was without sin (Hebrews 4:15).

Mathew wrote about Jesus' temptation.

Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the desert to be tempted by the devil (Matthew. 4:1).

8. Jesus Received Prayer, Yet He Prayed To The Father

Jesus was prayed to.

While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit" (Acts 7:59).

Jesus prayed to his Father.

After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed (John 17:1).

9. Jesus Gives Eternal Life, Yet He Experienced Death

He in the one who gives eternal life.

I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand (John 10:28).

Jesus died.

And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit (Matthew 27:50).

These Are Important Truths To Be Recognized Three important facts should be emphasized about the two natures of Christ. First, Jesus Christ had two distinct natures. He was fully God and fully human. Second, there was no intermingling between the two natures. Finally, while Christ had two natures he was only one Person. He was not a dual personality. Neither did he do some things as God and other things as a human.

He did not have a divine-human or a human-divine nature

Summary

The Bible teaches Jesus Christ, in one body, was both God and human. This is known as the communion of attributes. This truth is taught a number of ways in Scripture. We find that Jesus worshiped the Father and that people worshipped Jesus. The Bible says that Jesus was called God as well as a human being. Scripture says that Jesus was the Son of God (divine) as well as the Son of Man (human). Jesus was the fulness of Deity yet he had a body of flesh and bones. Although Jesus existed before Abraham he was born during the reign of Tiberius Caesar. Jesus knew all things yet he grew in wisdom. Jesus was without sin yet he was tempted to sin. People prayed to Jesus, Jesus prayed to the Father. Finally, Jesus, the one who gives eternal life, also experienced death.

CONTENT DISCLAIMER:

The Blue Letter Bible ministry and the BLB Institute hold to the historical, conservative Christian faith, which includes a firm belief in the inerrancy of Scripture. Since the text and audio content provided by BLB represent a range of evangelical traditions, all of the ideas and principles conveyed in the resource materials are not necessarily affirmed, in total, by this ministry.

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