Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Fully God and Fully Man

For the past 6 months, my accountability partners and I have been studying and discussing Bible Doctrine by Wayne Grudem (the watered down version of systematic theology). Currently we are going through the section on the Person of Christ and more than anything I have found this to extremely informative and great for brushing up on my apologetics. Recently I had been looking for a good definition of the deity of Christ in regards to the Incarnation. How does one biblically and clearly explain the divine and human nature that is Christ Jesus? Apparently this was an issue in the early Christian church as well. In an effort to suppress the rising confusion and heresy within the local church concerning the deity of Christ, the Chalcedonian Definition of A.D 451 was written over a period of 24 days (Oct. 8 till Nov. 1) in Constantinople, which is modern day Istanbul. The quote itself was not only biblically sound but very edifying and encouraging. The Chalcedonian Definition epitomizes the roll of Christ in His descension to earth. Here it is as I found it in Bible Doctrine:

"We, then, following the holy Fathers, all with one consent, teach men to confess one and the same Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, the same perfect in Godhead and also perfect in manhood; truly God and truly man, of a reasonable soul and body; con substantial (co essential) with the Father according to the Godhead, and con substantial with us according to the Manhood; In all things like unto us, without sin; begotten before all the ages of the Father according to the Godhead, and in these latter days, for us and for our salvation, born of the Virgin Mary, the Mother of God, according to the Manhood; one and the same Christ, Son, Lord, Only-begotten, to be acknowledged in two natures, in confusedly, unchangeably, indivisibly, inseparably; the distinction of natures being by no means taken away by the union, but rather the property of each nature being preserved, and concurring in on Person and one Subsistence, not parted or divided into two persons, but one and the same Son, and only begotten, God, the Word, the Lord Jesus Christ, as the prophets from the beginning have declared concerning Him, and the Lord Jesus Christ Himself taught us, and the Creed of the holy Fathers has been handed down to us."

Praise be to God for preserving His Word so that we might derive such helpful and influential doctrine as the Person and Deity of Christ. This is not an accident. God is very purposeful in bringing glory to His Son.



Jenn Romanski said...

Excellent. You should listen to Piper's breakout session from Passion '06. He did a biography basically on the life and doctrinal battle of Athanasius and how Athanasius (and others) fought to uphold the deity of Christ-that he was eternally begotten, not made. It was an excellent lesson in church history as well as an illuminating teaching on the person of Christ. I think you can still find the audio for it online, perhaps at Itunes...but the manuscript for the sermon, as originally given by Piper can be found here:

kyle said...

Thanks Jenn. Piper has always done some excellent sermons on historical heros. Maybe one day someone will do one on Him :)

Jenn Romanski said...

ha. true story.
and you're welcome!