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Jesus is...

Jesus is fully God and fully man, together*. That is a mystery that we cannot really grasp, another aspect of God of which we can only stand in awe and wonder.

As C.S. Lewis stated, there are only three options to Christ, three ways to respond: that he is Lord, a lunatic, or a liar. And that is how people in his day responded. At one point, his family came to take him - in that day, that meant to take him away, because they thought he was crazy, and some of the people thought he was crazy: "And when his family heard about it, they went out to seize him, for people were saying, 'He is beside himself [i.e., crazy]. He is possessed by Beelzebub'" (Mark 3:21). The Pharisees viewed him as a liar, accused him of blasphemy, and even attributed his powers to the devil. Clearly he claimed to be God, for that is why the religious leaders hated him and wanted to kill him; such was clearly stated at his trial. He claimed to be God, a fact that cannot be argued away. No sane human could claim to be God, but Jesus was no ordinary human. If one even intellectually assents that he is God, then that requires a real response; a merely intellectual faith is not an option. 'Lord' means lord over everything, including our lives, and that claim requires a response from you.

For saved Christians, that is part of the purpose of salvation. There's no cheap grace, no getting saved and retreating to a spiritual comfort zone or vacation mentality. "I'm saved, everything's cool, don't need to strain myself" is not an option. We are saved for the purpose of living under his lordship, of living as his disciples. That's a full-time calling.

In those days, a disciple meant a student, an apprentice of a rabbi. Jesus was a self-trained rabbi, and he calls us to be disciples. That's a full-time thing, not like a student in our modern sense (go to school a few hours a day and come home, like living as a Sunday-only Christian). It means spending all your time with your master, giving up everything to follow him, absorbing all this teaching and lifestyle, and learning to practice and teach it yourself.

* In the early days of Christianity, church fathers and theologians debated this a lot - whether he had two separate natures that remained dinstinct (diphysitism, as this view is known, and is common to Catholicism and Protestantism), one nature only - a full merging of the two (monophysitism, condemned as heterodoxy), or two closely mingled and combined natures (miaphysitism, of the Eastern Orthodox Church); and whether he had one combined will (monotheletism) or two - a still distinct human will and a divine will (ditheletism?). These issues still divide the three major branches of Christianity, though they are less important today.


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