Doctrine of Incarnation

July 18, 2010

The Doctrine of the Incarnation

The word Incarnation is from the Latin: In and caro, stem carn means, “flesh.” In the context of Christian theology, the Incarnation is the act whereby the eternal Son of God, the 2nd Person of the Trinity, without ceasing to be what He is, namely God the Son, added to His deity what He did not possess before the act, namely an impeccable human nature, thus making Him, the unique theanthropic Person of the cosmos. Therefore, the hypostatic union is the result of the Incarnation. It was accomplished by means of the Incarnation and the Incarnation was accomplished by means of the Virgin Pregnancy.
The theological terms hypostatic union and kenosis further explain the meaning and implications of the Son of God becoming incarnate. The doctrine of the Incarnation simply contends that the 2nd member of the Trinity, God the Son added to His deity, a perfect human nature while on the other hand the doctrine of the hypostatic union explains the relationship between the Christ deity and His perfect humanity. The doctrine of the kenosis explains how the unique theanthropic Person of Christ functioned while on planet earth during His 1st Advent.
The second person of the Trinity, the Lord Jesus Christ, entered permanently into the human race by means of the Virgin Birth. He is the only member of the Trinity to take upon Himself a human nature; therefore, He is different from the other members of the Godhead. He is different from the other members of the human race in that He is God, and without a sin nature because He did not have a human father. He did not cease to be God because He became a man, nor was He no less of a man because He was God. Therefore, there is no one like Him in the universe, He is a totally unique person, because He combined forever in Himself undiminished Deity along with perfect sinless humanity.
There are several reasons for the Incarnation. No Incarnation, no resolution to the angelic conflict. There would be no judgment of Satan. John 12:31, “Now JUDGEMENT is upon this world (Cosmic Diabolicus); now the ruler of this world shall be cast out.” John 16:11, “and concerning judgment, because the RULER OF THIS WORLD (Satan) has been JUDGED.”
The Cross was the Lord’s victory over Satan. Colossians 2:15, “When He (God the Father) had disarmed the rulers and authorities (Satan and the fallen angels), He (God the Father) made a public display of them, having TRIUMPHED OVER THEM THROUGH HIM (the Lord Jesus Christ).”
Satan rebelled against God by committing the sin of “independence.” Isaiah 14:13-14, “But you (Lucifer) said in your heart (leb, in his soul), ‘I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God (a reference to the angels), and I will sit on the mount of assembly in the recesses of the north. I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will MAKE MYSELF LIKE THE MOST HIGH.'”
Lucifer (Satan) thought more highly of himself than he should have because of his awesome beauty and wisdom. Ezekiel 28:11-18, “Again the word of the Lord came to me saying, ‘Son of man, take up a lamentation over the king of Tyre (Lucifer), and say to him, ‘Thus says the Lord God, ‘You (Lucifer) had the seal of perfection, FULL OF WISDOM AND PERFECT IN BEAUTY. You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone was your covering: The ruby, the topaz, and the diamond; the beryl, the onyx, and the jasper; the lapis lazuli, the turquoise, and the emerald; and the gold, the workmanship of your settings and sockets, was in you. On the day that you were created they were prepared. You were the anointed cherub who covers, and I place you there. You were on the holy
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mountain of God; You walked in the midst of the stones of fire. You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created, UNITL UNRIGHTEOUSNESS WAS FOUND IN YOU. By the abundance of your trade you were internally filled with violence, and you sinned; THEREFORE I HAVE CAST YOU AS PROFANE FROM THE MOUNTAIN OF GOD. And I have destroyed you, O covering cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire. Your heart was LIFTED UP BECAUSE OF YOUR BEAUTY; You corrupted your wisdom by reason of your splendor. I CAST YOU TO THE GROUND; I put you before kings, that they may see you. By the multitude of your iniquities, in the unrighteousness of your trade, you profaned your sanctuaries. THEREFORE I HAVE BROUGHT FIRE FROM THE MIDST OF YOU; IT (FIRE) HAS CONSUMED YOU, and I have turned you to ashes on the earth in the eyes of all who see you.'”
One third of the angels rebelled against God with Satan. Revelation 12:3-4a, “And another sign appeared in heaven; and behold, a great red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, on his heads were seven diadems. And his (Satan) tail swept away A THIRD OF THE STARS OF HEAVEN, and threw them to the earth.”
Satan and the fallen angels were judged and condemned to the Lake of Fire forever and ever, therefore, failing in their appeal trial. Luke 10:18, “I (the Lord Jesus Christ) was watching Satan fall from heaven like lightning.” Revelation 20:10, “And the devil who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are also; and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.”
Mankind would still be enslaved to Satan without the Incarnation. Hebrews 2:14-15, “Since the children share in flesh and blood, He (the Lord Jesus Christ) Himself likewise also partook of the same, that through death He might render powerless him who had the power of death, that is, the devil; and might DELIVER those (Fallen humanity) who through fear of death were subject to SLAVERY all their lives.”
Colossians 1:13, “For He (God the Father) DELIVERED US FROM THE DOMAIN OF DARKNESS, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom (the Lord Jesus Christ) we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.”
All of creation would still be in the slavery to corruption without the Incarnation. Romans 8:20-21, “For the creation was subjected to futility, not of its own will, but because of Him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself also WILL BE SET FREE FROM ITS SLAVERY TO CORRUPTION into the freedom of the glory of the children of God.”
God’s purpose for creating man, who is to resolve the Angelic Conflict, would not be fulfilled without the Incarnation. Colossians 2:15, “When He (the Lord Jesus Christ) had disarmed the rulers and authorities, He (the Lord Jesus Christ) made a public display of them (Fallen Angels), HAVING TRIUMPHED OVER THEM THROUGH HIM (the Lord Jesus Christ).”
No Incarnation, no Cross and Resurrection. No Cross and Resurrection, no salvation and hope for mankind. Man would die in his sins and would be without hope of redemption without the Incarnation. 1 Corinthians 15:17, “and if Christ has not been raised, your faith is worthless; YOU ARE STILL IN YOUR SINS. Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If we have hoped in Christ in this life only, we are of all men most to be pitied.”
Ephesians 2:12, “remember that you were at that time (before salvation) separate from Christ, excluded from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers to the covenants of promise, HAVING NO HOPE AND WITHOUT GOD IN THE WORLD.”
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The Lord Jesus Christ, the God-Man, is our hope. 1 Timothy 1:1, “Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus according to the commandment of God our Savior, and of Christ Jesus, WHO IS OUR HOPE.” Romans 8:24a, “For IN HOPE we have been saved.”
Man would not be reconciled to God without the Incarnation. “Reconciliation” comes from two verbs, katallasso, “to reconcile, to end a struggle between enemies and to bring about peace between the two.” “To exchange war for peace.”
Apokatallasso, “to reconcile, to restore a relationship to its previous peaceful state or condition.” Christ has restored man to his previous state before the fall of Adam and the Woman in the Garden.
Romans 5:10-11, “For if while we were enemies, we were RECONCILED to God through the death (spiritual) of His Son, much more, having been RECONCILED, we shall be saved by His life. And not only this, but we also exult in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the RECONCILIATION.”
2 Corinthians 5:18-19, “Now all these things (the new creation) are from God, who RECONCILED us to Himself through Christ, and gave us (the Apostles) the ministry of reconciliation, namely, that GOD WAS IN CHRIST RECONCILING THE WORLD TO HIMSELF, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of RECONCILIATION.”
Ephesians 2:13-17, “But now in Christ Jesus you who formerly were far off HAVE BEEN BROUGHT NEAR by the blood of Christ. For He Himself is our PEACE, who made both groups (Jew and Gentile) into one, and broke down the barrier of the dividing wall, by abolishing in His flesh (a reference to the Incarnation), which is the Law of commandments contained in ordinances, that in Himself (the Lord Jesus Christ) He might make the two into one new man, thus establishing PEACE, and might RECONCILE them both in one body to God through the cross, by it having put to death the enmity (the Law). And He came and preached PEACE to you who were far away (the Gentile), and peace to those who were near (the Jew).”
Colossians 1:19-22, “For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fulness to dwell in Him (the Lord Jesus Christ), and through Him (the Lord Jesus Christ) to RECONCILE ALL THINGS TO HIMSELF, having made peace through the blood of His cross; through Him (the Lord Jesus Christ), I say, whether things on earth or things in heaven. And although you were formerly alienated and hostile in mind, engaged in evil deeds, yet HE (the Lord Jesus Christ) HAS NOW RECONCILED YOU IN HIS FLESHLY BODY THROUGH DEATH (spiritual), in order to present you before Him holy and blameless and beyond reproach.”
1 Peter 3:18, “For Christ also died for sins once for all (unlimited atonement), the just (the Lord Jesus Christ) for the unjust (fallen humanity), in order that HE (the Lord Jesus Christ) MIGHT BRING US TO GOD, having been put to death in the flesh (a reference to His humanity), but made alive in the spirit.”
The Lord Jesus Christ is our “Kinsman Redeemer.” “Kinsman Redeemer” is someone who pays a price to set someone free who is under bondage to another. 1 Corinthians 6:20a, “For you have been BOUGHT with a price.”
Codex 2 centers upon the person and work of Christ, teaches the doctrine of the Kinsman Redeemer (Lev. 25:27, 48-49). Leviticus 25:47-48, “Now if the means of a stranger or of a sojourner with you becomes sufficient, and a countryman of yours becomes so poor with regard to him as to sell himself to a stranger who is sojourning with you, or to the
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descendants of a stranger’s family, then he shall have REDEMPTION right after he has been sold. ONE OF HIS BROTHERS MAY REDEEM HIM.”
The Book of Ruth also teaches this doctrine (Ruth 3:12-13; 4:4-6). The Lord Jesus Christ is Israel’s “Kinsman Redeemer.” Jeremiah 50:33-34, “Thus says the Lord of hosts, ‘the sons of Israel are oppressed, and the sons of Judah as well; and all who took them captive have held them fast, they have refused to let them go. Their REDEEMER is strong, THE LORD OF HOSTS IS HIS NAME; He (the Lord Jesus Christ) will vigorously plead their case, so that He may bring rest to the earth (Millennial Reign), but turmoil to the inhabitants of Babylon.”
The Church has been “redeemed” by the work of Christ on the cross. “Redemption”: The noun is apolutrosis, “the act of paying a ransom price to release another from the state of slavery resulting in redemption, “to set a slave free by paying a ransom.”
In the New Testament, apolutrosis refers to Christ paying the ransom price to release mankind from the slave market of sin and the devil with His spiritual death on the cross.
The verb is lutroo, “to free someone after paying a ransom, to purchase an individual’s freedom by paying a ransom”
Romans 3:24, “being justified as a gift by His grace through the REDEMPTION which is in Christ Jesus.” Galatians 3:13, “Christ REDEEMED us from the curse of the Law, having become a curse for us-for it is written, ‘Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree.'” Ephesians 1:7, “In Him (the Lord Jesus Christ) we have REDEMPTION through His blood (spiritual death), the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace.” Colossians 1:14, “in whom (the Lord Jesus Christ) we have REDEMPTION, the forgiveness of sins.” 1 Peter 1:18-19, “knowing that you were not REDEEMED with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, but with precious blood (our Lord’s spiritual death), as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ.” Revelation 5:9, “And they sang (Winner’s at the Bema Seat Judgment) a new song, saying, ‘Worthy art Thou to take the book, and to break its seals; For Thou was slain, and DIDST PURCHASE for God with Thy blood (spiritual death) men from every tribe and tongue and people and nation.”
There would be no High Priest to represent us before God without the Incarnation. “The High Priest” represented all the people of Israel before God by making an offering for their sins. The Lord Jesus Christ is our “High Priest” offering Himself for sin, once and for all.
Hebrews 9:24-28, “For Christ did not enter a holy place made with hands, a mere copy of the true one, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us; nor was it that He should offer Himself often, as the high priest enters the holy place year by year with blood not his own. Otherwise, He would have needed to suffer often since the foundation of the world; but now once at the consummation of the ages He has been manifested (a reference to the Incarnation) to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself. And inasmuch as it is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment, so Christ also, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, shall appear a second time for salvation without reference to sin, to those who eagerly await Him.”
Hebrews 2:17, “Therefore, He (the Lord Jesus Christ) had to be made like His brethren (Incarnation) in all things, that He might become a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people.”
Hebrews 3:1, “Therefore, holy brethren, partakers of a heavenly calling, consider Jesus, the Apostle and HIGH PRIEST of our confession.”
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Hebrews 4:14-16, “Since then we have a GREAT HIGH PRIEST who has passed through the heavens, JESUS (a reference to our Lord’s humanity) the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and may find grace to help in time of need.”
Hebrews 6:19-20, “This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope both sure and steadfast and one which enters within the veil, where Jesus has entered as a forerunner FOR US, having become a HIGH PRIEST forever according to the order of Melchizedek.”
Hebrews 7:25-27, “Hence, also, He (the Lord Jesus Christ) is able to save forever (eternal security) those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives TO MAKE INTERCESSION FOR THEM. For it was fitting that we should have such a HIGH PRIEST, holy, innocent, undefiled, separate from sinners and exalted above the heavens; who does not need daily, like those high priests (Aaronic Priesthood), to offer up sacrifices, first for his own sins, and then for the sins of the people, because this He (the Lord Jesus Christ) did once for all when He offered Himself.”
Hebrews 8:1, “Now the main point in what has been said is this: we have such a HIGH PRIEST, who has taken His seat at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens.”
There would be no “mediator” between God and man without the Incarnation. “Mediator” is the word mesites, “one who settles disputes between two parties, to act as an umpire or peacemaker.”
Job 9:32-33, “For He (God) is not a man as I am that I may answer Him, that we may go to court together. There is NO UMPIRE BETWEEN US, who may lay his hand upon us both.” 1 Timothy 2:5-6, “For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself as a ransom for all (unlimited atonement), the testimony borne at the proper time.”
Without the Incarnation, the believer would have no “Advocate” before the Father when we are accused by Satan. “Advocate” is the word parakletos is a legal term used of “someone who assists or defends another who has been accused of something.”
Satan accuses the believer before the Father day and night. Revelation 12:10, “Now the salvation, and the power, and the kingdom of our God and the authority of His Christ have come, for the ACCUSER OF OUR BRETHREN has been thrown down, who ACCUSES THEM BEFORE OUR GOD DAY AND NIGHT.”
The Lord Jesus Christ defends the believer when Satan accuses us of sin before God the Father. 1 John 2:1, “My little children, I am writing these things to you that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an ADVOCATE with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.”
There would be no Church Age, Mystery Doctrine, and plan of God for the church age without the Incarnation. Christ and the Church have an intimate union with each other, which is a Mystery, something not revealed to the Old Testament saints. Ephesians 1:22-23, “And He (the Lord Jesus Christ) put all things in subjection under His feet, and gave Him as head over all things to the church, which (the Church) is His body, the fulness of Him who fills all in all.” Ephesians 3:3-6, “that by revelation there was made known to me the MYSTERY, as I wrote before in brief. And by referring to this, when you read you can understand my insight into the MYSTERY OF CHRIST, which in other generations was
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not made known to the sons of men, as it has now been revealed to His holy apostles and prophets in the Spirit; to be specific, that the Gentiles are fellow heirs and fellow members of the body, and fellow partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus through the gospel.” Ephesians 3:8-10, “To me (Paul), the very least of all saints, this grace was given, to preach to the Gentiles the unfathomable riches of Christ, and to bring to light what is the administration of the MYSTERY which for ages has been hidden in God, who created all things; in order that the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known THROUGH THE CHURCH to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places.” Ephesians 5:23, “For the husband is the head of the wife, as Christ also is the head of the church, He Himself being the Savior of the body.” Ephesians 5:24, “But as the church is subject to Christ, so also the wives ought to be to their husbands in everything.” Ephesians 5:25, “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her.” Ephesians 5:26, “that He (the Lord Jesus Christ) might sanctify her (the Church), having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word.” Ephesians 5:27, “that He (the Lord Jesus Christ) might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she should be holy and blameless.” Ephesians 5:28-29, “So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies. He who loves his own wife loves himself; for no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ also does the church, because we are members of His (the Lord Jesus Christ) body.” Ephesians 5:32, “This MYSTERY is great; but I am speaking with reference to Christ and the church.”
Colossians 1:18a, “He (the Lord Jesus Christ) is also head of the body, the church.” Colossians 1:24, “Now I (Paul) rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I do my share on behalf of His body (which is the church) in filling up that which is lacking in Christ’s afflictions. Colossians 1:25-26, “Of this church I was made a minister according to the stewardship from God bestowed on me for your benefit, that I might fully carry out the preaching of the word of God, that is, THE MYSTERY which has been hidden from the past ages and generations; but has now been manifested to His saints.” Colossians 1:27, “to whom (the church) God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this MYSTERY among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.”
There would be no “new creation” without the Incarnation. 2 Corinthians 5:17a, “Therefore if any man is IN CHRIST, HE IS A NEW CREATURE.” Ephesians 2:14-15, “For He Himself (the Lord Jesus Christ) is our peace, who made both groups into one, and broke down the barrier of the dividing wall, by abolishing in His flesh the enmity, which is the Law of commandments contained in ordinances, that in Himself (the Lord Jesus Christ) He might make the two (Jew and Gentile) into one NEW MAN, thus establishing peace.”
There would be no one to sit upon David’s Throne without the Incarnation. Isaiah 9:7, “There will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace, on the THRONE OF DAVID and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and righteousness from then on and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will accomplish this.” Luke 1:32, “He (the Lord Jesus Christ) will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give Him THE THRONE OF HIS FATHER DAVID.”
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God promised David that his throne would be established forever. 2 Samuel 7:16, “And your house and your kingdom shall endure before me forever; your throne shall be established forever.”
There would be no Millennium without the Incarnation. Revelation 20:4, “And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given to them. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of the testimony of Jesus and because of the word of God, and those who had not worshipped the beast (anti-Christ) or his image, and had not received the mark upon their forehead and upon their hand; and they came to life and REIGNED WITH CHRIST FOR A THOUSAND YEARS.” Revelation 20:6, “Blessed and holy is the one who has a part in the first resurrection; over these the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will REIGN WITH HIM (the Lord Jesus Christ) FOR A THOUSAND YEARS.”
There would be no manifestation of God to man without the Incarnation. The answer to man’s question, “what is God like?” is answered in the person of Christ. John 14:8-9, “Philip said to Him (the Lord Jesus Christ), ‘Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Have I been so long with you, and yet you have not come to know Me, Philip? He who has seen me has seen the Father; how do you say, show us the Father’?” John 1:18, “No man has seen God at any time; the only begotten God (the Lord Jesus Christ), who is in the bosom of the Father, He (the Lord Jesus Christ) has explained Him.”
“Explained,” is the verb exegeomai, “to lead out, to show the way to.” The Lord Jesus Christ “led out into the open, who God is.” The Lord Jesus Christ “fully revealed who God is,” He “made known the complete revelation of God to man.” Hence, He “explained,” or “declared” God to man. The Lord Jesus Christ is the “exegesis” of God. John 10:30, “I and the Father are one.”
God’s love for mankind is revealed through the Incarnation. John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that He (God the Father) gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him (the Lord Jesus Christ) should not perish, but have eternal life.” Romans 5:8, “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” 1 John 3:16a, “We know love by this, that He (the Lord Jesus Christ) laid down His life for us.” 1 John 4:10, “In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.”
The prophecy of Moses that God would raise up a Man who would be a prophet like himself is fulfilled through the Incarnation. Deuteronomy 18:15, “The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you (a reference to the humanity of the incarnate Christ), YOU SHALL LISTEN TO HIM.” Matthew 17:5, “While he (Peter) was still speaking, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them; and behold, a voice out of the cloud, saying, ‘This is My beloved Son, with whom I am well-pleased; LISTEN TO HIM!'” Deuteronomy 18:18-19, “I will raise up a prophet from among their countrymen like you, and I will put My words in His (the Lord Jesus Christ) mouth, and He shall speak to them all that I command Him. And it shall come about that whoever will not listen to MY WORDS which He (the Lord Jesus Christ) shall speak in My name, I Myself will require it of him.” John 7:16, “My teaching is not Mine, but His (God the Father) who sent Me.” John 8:28b, “I do nothing of My own initiative, but I speak these things as the Father taught Me.” John 12:47-50, “And if anyone hears My sayings, and does not keep them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world. He who rejects Me, and does not receive My sayings, has one who judges him; the word I spoke is
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what will judge him at the last day. For I did not speak on My own initiative, but the Father Himself who sent Me has given Me commandment, what to say, and what to speak. And I know that His commandment is eternal life; therefore the things I speak, I speak just as the Father has told Me.”
The grace of God towards mankind would not be manifested without the Incarnation. Grace is the noun charis, “gift, kindness, favor.” God displayed His “unmerited favor, kindness” towards us by sending His Son into the world.
John 1:17, “For the Law was given through Moses; GRACE AND TRUTH WERE REALIZED THROUGH JESUS CHRIST.” Romans 5:15, “But the FREE GIFT is not like the transgression. For if by the transgression (Adam’s sin) of the one (Adam) the many died (imputation of Adam’s sin to all members of the human race), much more did the GRACE OF GOD and the gift by the GRACE of the One MAN, Jesus Christ, abound to the many.” Ephesians 2:4-7, “But God being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us (the church), even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by GRACE YOU HAVE BEEN SAVED), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him (the Lord Jesus Christ) in the heavenly places, IN CHRIST JESUS, in order that in the ages to come He might show the SURPASSING RICHES OF HIS GRACE in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.” Titus 2:11, “For the GRACE of God has appeared (a reference to the Incarnation of Christ), bringing salvation to all men.” Hebrews 2:9, “But we do see Him (the Lord Jesus Christ) who has been made for a little while lower than the angels, namely, Jesus, because of the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honor, that by the GRACE OF GOD He might taste death for EVERYONE.”
The Incarnation was accomplished through the Virgin Birth (Isa. 9:6-7; Micah 5:2; Luke 1:30-35). Isaiah 7:14, “Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel.” “Immanuel” is a proper name and means “with us is God.” A “virgin” would give birth to Immanuel, therefore, signaling a miraculous birth. “Virgin” is the Hebrew word `almah. `Almah means a “young woman who has not had sex yet with a man, but is at the age to be married.”
The angel Gabriel prophesied to Mary that the Child’s name would be called “Jesus” (Luke 1:31). “Jesus” (Iesou) is a Greek form of a Hebrew name, Joshua, meaning “Jehovah our salvation.” It is from the Hebrew name Jehoshua which is taken from two famous Jewish names: (1) Joshua, the successor of Moses (2) Jeshua, the high priest of the Jews upon their arrival back from the Babylonian exile. Joshua was originally named Hoshea which means “saving,” but was altered by Moses (Num. 13:16) into Jehoshua, “Jehovah our salvation,” therefore, we get the expression, Savior. The promised Savior would have a totally unique birth from other men: He is the “only begotten from the Father” (John 1:14, 18; 3:16, 18; Acts 13:33; Heb. 1:5; 5:5; 1 John 4:9)
The promised Messiah would have no human father, but instead would be born of the Holy Spirit (Luke 1:35). Because He would have no human father, therefore, His Father would be God (Heb. 1:5; 10:5). Joseph, who married Mary, was not the natural father of our Lord. He was excluded from sitting upon the throne of his great ancestor King David because of the Coniah Curse (Jeremiah 22:24-30); therefore, he had no part in the birth of Jesus. David had two sons, Solomon and Nathan. God used Nathan’s line and not Solomon’s. Mary was in the line of Nathan. Joseph was in the line of Solomon. Coniah was in the line of Solomon. Coniah’s line was cut off, therefore, excluding Joseph from taking part in the birth of the Messiah. Nathan’s 2002 William E. Wenstrom, Jr. Bible Ministries 8
line would be used to produce the humanity of our Lord, and not Solomon’s. Mary was in Nathan’s line. The marriage of Mary and Joseph made our Lord the “adopted” son and “legal heir” of Joseph. This reflects God’s Divine Sovereignty, Omniscience and Omnipotence. Our Lord’s claim to the Davidic Throne could be proven through the Temple Register. Both Mary and Joseph’s ancestry could be traced all the way back to David through the Temple Register. Mary and Joseph would not have gone to Bethlehem, David’s birthplace, when Caesar. Augustus gave the command to have a census taken unless they were of the House of David (Luke 2:1-5). No one, not even our Lord’s enemies, the Pharisees and the Sadducees, contended with our Lord about His Davidic ancestry since the records were in the Temple Register. Those records were destroyed when the Roman general Titus destroyed Jerusalem and the Temple in A. D. 70. These records can now only by found in the Gospels of Matthew and Luke.
The Old Testament prophets as well as the New Testament writers clearly state, that the child to be born of a virgin, would be God Himself: (1) “The Son of God” (Luke 1:35) (2) “The Son of the Most High” (Luke 1:32) (3) “Mighty God” (Isaiah 9:6) (4) “Eternal Father” (Isaiah 9:6) (5) “His goings forth are from long ago, from the days of eternity” (Micah 5:2).
The Virgin Birth is a tremendous act of Grace on the part of God towards mankind. God alone produced the body of our Lord: (1) “The zeal of the Lord of Hosts will accomplish this” (Isa. 9:7) (2) “The Lord Himself will give you a sign” (Isa. 7:14) (3) “The Holy Spirit” came upon Mary and “the power of the Most High” produced the body of our Lord (Luke 1:30-35).
Mary’s womb was only the vehicle for the formation of the human body of our Lord, which was not contaminated by Adam’s old sin nature. Because of the virgin pregnancy the humanity of Christ did not have an old sin nature. He had a human body that was produced through the omnipotence of the Holy Spirit (Heb. 10:5-7).
The Incarnation produced the hypostatic union or in other words, it is the result of the Son of God becoming a human being. The theological term hypostatic union means that the Lord Jesus Christ is undiminished deity and true sinless humanity in 1 Person forever. He unites in Himself the essence of God and the essence of man without compromising the integrity of the attributes of each nature.
The Lord Jesus Christ is infinite and eternal God (John 1:1-2; John 8:58; 10:30a; Col. 2:9a; Rev. 1:8). The titles assigned to His deity are as follows: (1) “The Son of God” (Luke 1:35) (2) “The Son of the Most High” (Luke 1:32) (3) “Mighty God” (Isaiah 9:6) (4) “Eternal Father” (Isaiah 9:6) (5) “His goings forth are from long ago, from the days of eternity” (Micah 5:2). (6) “Lord” (Rom. 15:30; Eph. 1:22; Phil. 2:11). (7) “God” (Titus 2:13).
He has the same divine essence as God the Father and God the Holy Spirit. He possesses all the attributes of deity: (1) Sovereignty (Matt. 28:18a; Col. 2:10b). (2) Perfect righteousness (John 8:46a; 2 Cor. 5:21; Heb. 7:26; 1 Pet. 2:22; 1 John 2:21b). (30 Justice (John 8:16a; 2 Tim. 4:8; Psa. 9:8; Deut. 32:4; Rev. 15:3b). (4) Love (John 13:34; Rom. 5:8; Eph. 3:19; 1 John 4:9-10). (5) Eternal life (1 Tim. 1:17; 1 John 5:11). (6) Omniscience (Luke 11:17; John 2:24-25; 6:64; 21:17). (7) Omnipresence (Matt. 18:20; Prov. 15:3) (8) Omnipotence (John 1:3, 10; 5:21; 1 Cor. 1:23-24; Phil. 3:21; Heb. 1:3; Rev. 1:8). (9) Immutability (Mal. 3:6; Heb. 1:10-12; 13:8). (10) Veracity (John 1:14; 14:6a; 1 John 3:16).
He is the Creator and Sustainer of the universe (John 1:3, 10; Col. 1:16-17; Heb. 1:3, 10). The Lord Jesus Christ has authority to forgive sins (Matt. 9:6; Luke 5:24; Col. 3:13). The Lord Jesus Christ has the power to raise the dead (John 5:21; 6:40; 11:25). All judgment belongs to the Lord Jesus Christ (John 5:22; 1 Cor. 3:11-15; 2 Cor. 5:10; Rev. 20:11-14), and receives worship from both men and angels (Psa. 99:5; Phil. 2:10; Rev. 5:13-14). In His Deity always
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occupied a place of equality and fellowship with God the Father and God the Holy Spirit. The Lord Jesus Christ as God was equal with the Father (John 10:30, 37-38; 14:9; 17:5, 24-25).
The Lord Jesus Christ condescended to the human race by adding to His undiminished deity, a perfect, sinless humanity. He had human emotions and human limitations. This condescension allowed Him to experience the human condition with all its limitations and emotions except for sin. It also enabled Him to die for the sins of the world and rise from the dead since deity cannot die. Webster’s Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary defines condescend, “to descend to a less formal or dignified level, to waive the privileges of rank.” Webster’s New Universal Unabridged Dictionary defines condescend, “to waive dignity or superiority voluntarily and assume equality with an inferior.”
The Lord Jesus Christ voluntarily waived His superiority of rank with its privileges and dignity as the second Person of the Trinity by assuming equality with inferior humanity in Hypostatic Union. Christ’s humanity was foreordained in eternity past (1 Pet. 1:20). The Old Testament prophets wrote of a human Messiah (Gen. 3:15; Isa. 7:14). The Old Testament wrote of a suffering human Messiah (Psa. 22:6-8; 14:18; Isa. 52:14; 53:3-5), and a triumphant Messiah (Isa. 63:1; Zech. 14:9, 16-17). In His humanity, He was able to fulfill the Old Testament prophesies concerning the suffering Messiah and will be able to fulfill the future glorious Millennial reign of the Messiah. He will save Israel at the end of the Tribulation and will physically reign over all the earth for a thousand years (Isa. 63:1; Zech. 14:9).
The Lord Jesus Christ is trichotomous in His humanity. He has a human body like ours but without a sin nature (John 1:14; Heb. 10:5; 1 John 1:1; 1 John 4:2-3). He has a human soul (Matt. 26:38a; Isa. 53:11a). He also has a human spirit (Luke 23:46; John 13:21; 19:30). The Scriptures use the following titles when stressing our Lord’s humanity: (1) “The Son of Man” (Matt. 24:30; Mark 26:64; Luke 5:24; 6:5; John 1:51; 3:14; 8:28). (2) “The Son of David” (Matt. 1:1; Mark 10:47; Luke 1:32; 18:39; Rev. 22:16). (3) “The Man Christ Jesus” (1 Tim. 2:5). (4) “Jesus” (Acts 2:32; 8:35; Rom. 3:26; 1 Thess. 4:14; Heb. 2:9; 6:20).
Our Lord as a human being: (1) “Wept” (John 11:35; Heb. 5:7). (2) “Slept” (Mark 4:38). (3) Became “hungry” (Luke 4:2). (4) Was “thirsty” (John 19:28). (5) “Prayed” (Luke 21:41-42; Heb. 5:7). (6) “Ate” and “drank” (Mark 2:16; Luke 5:30). (7) Was “weary” (John 4:6). (8) Was in “agony” (Luke 22:44). (9) Had to “grow” physically and mentally (Luke 2:40). (10) Had to “learn” Bible Doctrine (Luke 2:52). (11) Had to learn “obedience” (Heb. 5:7). (12) Was “tempted” (Luke 4:2; Heb. 2:18; 4:15). (13) Was a Man of “sorrows” (Isaiah 53:3). (14) Was “despised” and “forsaken” of men (Isaiah 53:3). (15) “Rejoiced” (Luke 10:21). (16) “Died” physically (John 19:33). (17) “Died” spiritually (Matt. 27:45-46).
Our Lord in His humanity rapidly advanced through the 3 stages of spiritual adulthood with its accompanying 3 categories of suffering for blessing: (1) Spiritual self-esteem (Luke 2:4) (2) Spiritual autonomy (Luke 2:52) (3) Spiritual maturity (John 1:14)
As a human being the Lord Jesus Christ applied the Word of God, which in turn enabled the Holy Spirit to guide and empower Him to execute the Father’s plan for His life, which was the cross. As a human being He defeated Satan and at the same time provided salvation for all mankind at the cross the Spirit of God and the Word of God (Mt. 4:1-11; Heb. 9:14).
The 6-Fold Purpose of the Incarnation: (1) Defeat Satan in the angelic conflict by vindicating the integrity of God. (2) Provide salvation for all mankind. (3) Demonstrate the divine power of the prototype spiritual life to the Church. (4) Fulfill 4 unconditional covenants to Israel. (5) Rule over all creation. (6) Fulfill the righteous requirements of the Mosaic Law.
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Webster’s Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary defines the word union as, “an act or instance of uniting or joining two or more things into one.” To unite is to put together 2 things to form a single unit. Christ unites in Himself: (1) The essence of God (2) The essence of man.
The uniting of the essence of God and the essence of man forms a new hupostasis, or “essence,” the hypostatic union, the God-Man. If we were to make the hypostatic union a mathematical equation, it would look like this: The essence of God + the essence of man = the hypostatic union. The hypostatic union is the complete Unique Person of Christ.
The Lord Jesus Christ is the unique theanthropic Person of the universe. He is undiminished deity and true humanity in 1 Person forever. These two natures, deity and true humanity, are combined in 1 Personality, forever. He did not have 2 personalities because He had 2 natures. Because He is a man does not make our Lord less than God. Nor, does His being God prevent Him from being truly a man. His 2 natures, though united, retain their separate identities. His divine attributes are always united to His divine nature. His human attributes are always united to His human nature. Deity remains deity and humanity remains humanity. The infinite cannot become finite and the immutable cannot be changed. No attribute of deity was altered when our Lord became a Man through the Incarnation. To take away a single attribute from His divine nature would destroy His deity. To take away from His perfect human nature a single attribute would destroy His humanity. Our Lord is both God and Man. He is different from the other members of the Trinity in that He is true humanity. He is different from the rest of humanity in that He is God. This makes our Lord the only Theanthropic Person of the universe. There is no one like Him in the Universe and there will never be someone like Him ever again.
The hypostatic union is personal. A new Personality came into being at the virgin birth with 2 natures. The doctrine of the Incarnation refers to the virgin birth of Christ. A unique hupostasis came into being at the virgin birth. Our Lord was a unique Person with 2 natures. The 2nd Person of the Trinity, God the Son, took upon Himself true humanity, and therefore, became a totally unique personality. The hypostatic union is eternal as well as personal. Eternal means “no beginning, and no end.” Christ as eternal God will never cease to be a member of the human race (Heb. 13:8). Our Lord in His deity always existed. At this moment Jesus-as a man-is seated at the right hand of God the Father (Acts 5:31; Heb. 1:3).
Our Lord’s deity is omnipresent and does not sit but rather our Lord’s humanity sits. The humanity of Christ will return to the earth at the 2nd Advent (Zech. 14:1-11; Rev. 1:7). And as King David’s hypostatic union heir Jesus will eternally rule over Israel (2 Sam. 7:8-17; Psa. 89:20-37). Our Lord is both undiminished deity and true humanity forever. This means that our Lord is both God and Man and this personal union is forever. The Bible teaches that Christ is God and Man. The greatest temptations that our Lord had to deal with in His humanity was the temptations of using His deity to solve His problems with fallen angels and fallen humanity. Hebrews 12:3a, “For consider Him (The humanity of Christ) who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself.”
4 Great Issues regarding the Person of Christ: (1) How could the Creator become a creature, a human being, without compromising His deity? (2) How could sovereign, unchangeable God become a servant yet remain God? (3) How could the unglorified humanity of Christ remain perfect, acceptable to God as a blameless sacrifice for our sins, while living in the devil’s world? (4) How could God stoop to become a man and suffer the humiliation of the cross?
The historical life of Christ in hypostatic union on earth proves that God resolved these issues. The problems our Lord faced are answered for us when we understand the following doctrines: (1) Impeccability (2) Kenosis (3) Prototype Spiritual Life. Each of these doctrines will
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provide us with a clearer understanding of the Hypostatic Union. The Lord Jesus Christ in hypostatic union functioning under kenosis utilized the prototype spiritual life which was the Father’s provision for Him in time which enabled our Lord to: (1) Defeat Satan and resolve the angelic conflict. (2) Provide salvation for all mankind. (3) Demonstrate the divine omnipotence of the spiritual life. (4) Fulfill the righteous requirements of the Mosaic Law.
Our Lord was the first human being to operate in this unique spiritual life provided by God the Father from eternity past. It is utilized by applying the Word of God while filled by means of the Spirit. Our Lord demonstrated these 2 Great Divine Provisions through His impeccable humanity when He defeated Satan 1 on 1 (Mt. 4:1-11). He had the prototype spiritual life. Webster’s Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary defines prototype as, “an original model on which something is patterned, a first full-scale and usually functional form of a new type or design of a construction (as an airplane).” Only the prototype unique spiritual life explains the impeccability of our Lord. He was tempted in every way that we are, as well as in unique temptations that no one else will ever face, i.e., the temptation to use His deity (Matt. 4:1-4). He never violated His Kenosis but consistently relied upon the power of God the Holy Spirit by utilizing the unique spiritual life.
The unique spiritual life gave Him the power to reach the Cross fully qualified to bear our sins. The Father gave this unique spiritual life to His Son as a gift. The plan of the Father gave our Lord a mission, which was to purchase the salvation of mankind (Mark 10:45) and to defeat Satan in the angelic conflict. He always relied upon the power of God the Holy Spirit inside the unique spiritual life. Our Lord consistently relied upon the power of God the Holy Spirit inside the unique spiritual life in order to become the 1st Invisible Hero. Hebrews 9:14 says that our Lord used the power of the Spirit to offer Himself as a perfect sacrifice to God for our sins. He learned and applied Bible Doctrine inside the unique spiritual life. The doctrine of the unique spiritual life makes clear or explains the doctrine of kenosis by showing what Christ voluntarily chose to do, not just what He voluntarily chose to restrict. We as Church Age believers are to follow His example and operate in our very own jet fighter called the unique spiritual life. The Lord Jesus Christ is the hero of the Angelic Conflict. Our Lord’s substitutionary spiritual death on the Cross was the strategic victory over Satan (Matt. 27:45-46).
The following is a list of individuals and church councils, which believed in the doctrine of the Incarnation.
THE NICENE CREED (The First Council of Nice, A. D. 325): “We believe in one God, the Father Almighty, the maker of all things visible and invisible; and in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the only-begotten of his Father, of the substance of the Father, God of God, Light of Light, very God of very God, begotten (gennethenta), not made, being of one substance (omoousion, consubstantialem) with the Father. By whom all things were made, both which be in heaven and in earth. Who for us men and our salvation CAME DOWN (from heaven) AND WAS INCARNATE AND WAS MADE MAN. He suffered and the third day he rose again, and ascended into heaven. And He shall come again to judge both the quick and the dead. And (we believe) in the Holy Spirit. And whosoever shall say that there was a time when the Son of God was not (en pote hote ouk en), or that before he was begotten he was not, or that he was made of things that were not, or that he is of a different substance or essence (from the Father) or that he is a creature, or subject to change or conversion-all that so say, the Catholic and Apostolic Church anathematizes them.”
THE COUNCIL OF CHALCEDON (A.D. 451): “We teach with one voice that the Son of God and our Lord Jesus Christ is to be confessed as one and the same (Person), that He is perfect
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in Godhead and perfect in manhood, very God and very man, of a reasonable soul and (human) body consisting, consubstantial with the Father as touching His Godhead, and consubstantial with us as touching his manhood; made in all things like unto us, sin only excepted; begotten of His Father before the worlds according to His Godhead; but in these last days for us men and for our salvation born (into the world) of the Virgin Mary, the Mother of God according to His manhood. This one and the same Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son (of God) must be confessed to be in two natures, unconfusedly, immutably, indivisibly, distinctly.”
BENJAMIN WARFIELD (1851-1921): “These manifestations of a human and Divine consciousness simply stand side by side in the records of our Lord’s self-expression. Neither is suppressed or even qualified by the other. If we attend only the one class we might suppose Him to proclaim Himself wholly Divine; if only to the other we might equally easily imagine Him to be representing Himself as wholly human. With both together before us we perceive Him alternately speaking out of a Divine and out of a human consciousness; manifesting Himself as all that God is and as all that man is; yet with the most marked unity of consciousness. He, the one Jesus Christ, was to His own apprehension true God and complete man in a unitary personal life.”
CHARLES HODGE (1797-1878): “The facts which the Bible teaches concerning the person of Christ are, first, that He was truly man, i.e., He had a perfect or complete human nature. Hence everything that can be predicated of man (that is, of man as man, and not of man as fallen) can be predicated of Christ. Secondly, He was truly God, or had a perfect divine nature. Hence everything that can be predicated of God can be predicated of Christ. Thirdly, He was one person. The same person, self, or Ego, who said, ‘I thirst,’ said, ‘Before Abraham was, I am.’ This is the whole doctrine of the Incarnation as it lies in the Scriptures and in the faith of the Church” (Systematic Theology Vol. 2., pg. 380).
LEWIS SPERRY CHAFER (1871-1952): “Through His Incarnation Christ combined both the perfect, divine nature of God and human nature in one Person. He was no less God because of His humanity and no more than human as respects humanity because of the divine being which He was. If the Logos was to become ‘flesh’ and as Immanuel be one of the human family, there was but one way it could be done. He must submit to a human birth. Had He suddenly appeared on earth among men as if one of them or even been seen descending from heaven, the identity of His person-without a human body, soul, and spirit all of His own-could never have been established satisfactorily. It is too often assumed that Christ began to be at the time of His birth of the virgin, whereas He was from all eternity. From the standpoint of fact, then, humanity was only added to Deity” (Systematic Theology, Vol. 7, pg. 196).