“Revealed in the Flesh”

God in the flesh

Although the word “Incarnation” is not in Scripture, the concept is certainly biblical. Incarnation means “taking on flesh” and is commonly used of Jesus leaving heaven to become human.

Of the six great truths Paul cites about Jesus in First Timothy 3:16, the first is that He “was revealed in the flesh.”

Martin Luther wrote, “The mystery of the humanity of Christ, that He sank Himself into our flesh, is beyond all human understanding” (Table Talk).

J. I. Packer said, “The Almighty appeared on earth as a helpless human baby, needing to be fed and changed and taught like any other child. The more you think about it, the more staggering it gets. Nothing in fiction is so fantastic as the truth of the Incarnation” (Christian Reader, Vol. 33, no. 6).

God made visible

Before the Incarnation He was invisible to the world. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1:1).

But then He made Himself visible. “And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory . . .” (John 1:14).

Through His Incarnation Jesus: 1) identified with us, 2) made it possible for us to have a clearer picture of God (John 14:8-9), 3) connected Himself to a human line of ancestors stretching all the way back to Adam (Luke 3:23-38), and 4) took on a body capable of dying, by which He could defeat Satan’s hold on us (Hebrews 2:14-15).

Wesley’s hymn “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing” includes these lines: “Veiled in flesh the Godhead see; / Hail th’incarnate Deity; / Pleased as man with men to dwell, /Jesus, our Immanuel!”

Jesus raised-tagged

Scripture quotations taken from the NASB: http://www.lockman.org/

Please share this post!

david_gibson6@yahoo.com

Why Did Jesus Leave Heaven for Earth?

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God . . . . And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory . . .” (John 1:1, 14).

“. . . although He existed in the form of God, [He] did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men” (Philippians 2:6-7).

That the Son of God became Son of Man has to be one of the most astounding historical events of all time.

Even more amazing is that He was willing to do it! Never before or since has anyone undergone such an austere demotion.

But why?

Why would He voluntarily give up the glories of heaven for the hardships of earth, knowing how dearly it would cost Him? The author of the book of Hebrews explains:

First, since those He would come to save “share in flesh and blood, He 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 free those who through fear of death were subject to slavery all their lives” (Hebrews 2:14-15).

In other words, in heaven Jesus was immortal. Since His death would be the price of our redemption, He had to take on a body capable of dying.

Second, “He had to be made like His brethren in all things, so that He might become a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people. For since He Himself was tempted in that which He has suffered, He is able to come to the aid of those who are tempted” (Hebrews 2:17-18).

Finding our place in His plan

God sent His Son not only to rescue us from our sins, but also that we would “become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren” (Romans 8:29).

He became like us so we could become like Him.

Will wonders never cease!

man and shadow-tagged

Scripture quotations taken from the NASB: http://www.lockman.org/

Please share this post!

david_gibson6@yahoo.com