When the christian adopts the belief that in Jesus two contradictory natures became one, it can be of no surprise that his divine monster will switch hats at a whim, that an explanation will need to be on hand when the new testament depiction of Jesus clashes with that belief.
What do you mean, David?
I’ll tell you.
Searching for their point of view on the union to make sure I’m not creating a straw man argument, I came across various trinitarian sources saying similar things.
Furthermore it is necessary to everlasting salvation that he also believe rightly the incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ. For the right faith is that we believe and confess that our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is God and man. God of the substance of the Father, begotten before the worlds; and man of substance of His mother, born in the world. Perfect God and perfect man, of a reasonable soul and human flesh subsisting. Equal to the Father as touching His Godhead, and inferior to the Father as touching His manhood. Who, although He is God and man, yet He is not two, but one Christ. One, not by conversion of the Godhead into flesh, but by taking of that manhood into God. One altogether, not by confusion of substance, but by unity of person. For as the reasonable soul and flesh is one man, so God and man is one Christ; (Athanasian Creed, emphasis mine)
Jesus’ two natures are not “mixed together” (Eutychianism), nor are they combined into a new God-man nature (Monophysitism). They are separate yet act as a unit in the one person of Jesus. (Jesus’ Two Natures: God and Man, http://carm.org/jesus-two-natures)
The union of the two natures was complete. Jesus did not act as God on some occasions and then as a human at other times. Therefore we cannot divide events in His life into the category of human or divine. He lived and suffered as a human being, yet all the while He was God. It is not correct to say that He performed miracles as God but died on the cross as a human. Jesus was both divine and human at all times. He is a single, undivided personality. The two natures are inseparably united. Thus He is not merely God and man but rather the God-man. (In What Sense Was Jesus Christ God And Man Simultaneously? (Hypostatic Union), http://web.ccbce.com/multimedia/BLB/faq/nbi/222.html)
I believe that, based on these quotes, I have a grounding to strongly state what I say that follows.
The God and the man that was supposed to be Jesus where an inseparable union. Whatever Jesus said or did, whatever happened to him, it came from or impacted or was done by both sides of the coin.
This is very important when it comes to the life of Jesus as depicted in the gospels and other parts of the new testament. This is especially true in comparison to the excuses Jesus worshippers give for certain words, actions and descriptions of Jesus when those depictions flatly contradict how God is described in the Jewish Bible and even in the new testament itself.
I’m not sure if you’ve ever had this experience, but for me, when I challenge Jesus worshippers on things that Jesus said or did which conflicts with the truth about God, I’ll get the excuse that this particular thing was only relevant to Jesus’ flesh rather than his divinity.
Me: Hey, Jesus said he can do nothing of himself.
Monster worshipper: Oh, that was just about Jesus in the flesh.
Me: But Jesus claimed to not know something (the time of the second coming). In fact, he was an ignorant baby that grew and growing in wisdom and knowledge.
Monster worshipper: But that was just while he was in the flesh.
Me: But isn’t God omnipresent, yet Jesus was only in one place at a time?
Monster worshipper: Well that was while he was in the flesh.
Me: Jesus got tired and he fell asleep.
Monster worshipper: Well God had to experience our existence in the flesh.
Me: But isn’t God immortal?
Monster worshipper: The flesh died.
Me: But wait! Don’t you say that those great miracles show his being God? and isn’t the resurrection supposed to show his deity?
Monster worshipper: Yes it does!
Me: And you believe Jesus to be God when he said “before Abraham was, I am?”
Monster worshipper: Amen, he was.
Me: But doesn’t James say God can’t be tempted, but Hebrews says Jesus was tempted?
Monster worshipper: Well the human side of Jesus was tempted.
This may not be what all these people say, but too many of them that I’ve faced in the past have used one or many of these sorts of arguments.
The problem many times is that Jesus worshippers tend to jump in and out of the Jesus being God for uncomfortable new testament statements. But you read what the doctrine is meant to be in the quotes above. I’ve read them and their contexts. The natures, divine and human, are meant to be inseparably united. What Jesus went through, both natures went through. There is no get-out clause. The Jesus worshipper must contradict himself! Or herself!
When Jesus was tempted, God necessarily was tempted contradicting the new testament! When Jesus was sleeping, God was sleeping, contradicting the Jewish Bible. When Jesus got tired, the Almighty God’s strength was flagging?!? When Jesus got literally angry with emotion, God literally (not anthropomorphically) got angry. The God that stated that he would always the same, eternally consistent, and who is all knowing changed into a man, grew up and gained knowledge. When Jesus got injured, the invincible God was injured! When Jesus died, the immortal God died?!?!
The habit of christians to use the flesh of Jesus, to jump into the flesh to escape the divinity, many times, is an inadequate argument betraying the very statements of their doctrine. It’s false in so many ways.
Understand this! The God of a Jesus worshipper is not the God of the Jewish Bible, the God who created everything and thus was beyond everything. He cannot be. It’s a self defeating, self contradicting monster.
But it’s also important to know that these facts will not change the mind of many christians. Why? Because they were never primarily devoted to the God of the Jewish Bible. Harsh but true. They were devoted to the life and suffering of a man. That is why what they embrace is idolatry. They cling unfalteringly not to the glory of God, but to the life of a man.