- Religion and Philosophy
Jesus Christ as we know him.
History has undoubtedly filled it's pages with colorful characters, great men and women alike. It's archives are flooded with great achievements and glorious accolades. Rooted in it's timely vault and it's very nature are the lives of great and memorable people. Leaders, soldiers, and inventors. They all have a place carved out for them in the stone tablet of history. Each leaving it's mark on society and it's people. Each having it's own moment in the spotlight.
No life has ever been more debated in the realm of history, nor as any life influenced more people and defined an era quite like that of the life of one man. That man was a poor man born to a loving mother and father and cast aside by the world he loved. That man was Jesus Christ!
His story is written in the best selling book of all time. His death synonymous with the christian faith. His likeness as seen roles in TV, film, and even Broadway. The name Jesus is the basis for so many best selling novels, yet with all these accomplishments we really don't know exactly who this Jesus was. Was he a simple man sent to live among simple men and lead them to the understanding of the one true God? Was he a celestial being sent from above to perform the works of God on Earth? Who was this Jesus?
In this text we are going to look at the life and time of Jesus Christ in two separate perspectives and from two vantage points. One will view this amazing person as God's chosen, sent here to live the life of a man so that he may know us better and lead us to the place we need to be. The other viewpoint will picture the same Jesus as a celestial being that wielded cosmic powers and could manipulate the world to his will.
Was Jesus a celestial being or a simple man? Both sides have an equally impressive arsenal of evidence to defend their particular claim as to the true nature of the Christ. Could he have been a man imbued with God's grace, or was he a celestial entity? is it possible in some form he could have been both? Before we explore any farther I want to look at a quote from one of my favorite films, "The Divinci Code". In one scene the main character, played by Tom Hanks, is trying to rationalize what it is Jesus was and he asked why Jesus could not have been both divine and human. Can human not be divine? That is the concept I want you to follow as we explore this.
The Three Birds
The concept of Jesus coming to Earth as a man is one that really sparks a lot for debate and we really find it hard to grasp sometimes. I found through my loving girlfriend this story by Paul Harvey that really summed it up. I will shorten it a bit but here goes.
A man is sitting at home while his family attend church. he himself never understood the Jesus thing when if God were real he would have no issues convincing us to follow his will. While sitting he hears a loud thump on his window and finds three birds have collided with his glass window while trying to seek warmth from the snow. He knows they will die if he does not help them.
He opens the door to his warm garage and tries to shoo the birds in and they are to scared and they try to flee but the snow is to much. He then tries to push them along with a newspaper but they still won't budge. The man steps back and tells himself that if he could only make them think he was a bird, or one of them. Than they would not be afraid and they would trust him more. Than it clicked. God needed us to see him in the same light and thus Jesus was sent.
The Manger Scene
God sent his son....
The story of Jesus Christ begins in an unusual way. It starts with the angel Gabriell. Gabriell is assigned the task of telling Mary and her husband that a son will be born to them. This is not to unusual unless you factor in Mary and Joseph had not yet known each other meaning Mary was in fact a virgin. This gives us our first piece of evidence. Sadly the evidence here goes to both sides of the Jesus debate. That's right, both sides of the fence can and usually do claim this one for their argument's sake.
He came into the world as a man would do, birthed by a mother. This is a great testament to those who believe Jesus was a man. He was not spawned nor simply created but born after a regular pregnancy to a human mother. This puts a good grip on the human side but at the same time we have to explore the means of that regular pregnancy. Jesus was not formed in the womb the way you or I was but placed there by God.
As you can imagine followers of the thought that Jesus is a celestial being grab quickly to this fact and use it to deny his humanness and proclaim is divinity without human flaw. Both sides have a valid argument and really there is no way to dispute either. We can look further and see that Jesus grew up at the rate any human being would and was not considered any different than any other person of that time frame.
The real kicker is in many ways the virgin birth has become known as the first miracle of Jesus. Once again this is a bit sided to the celestial view as men are not thought to do miracles although by the end of this text I am sure you will view that statement as false.
Jesus walks on water
Miracles- Are they acts of man or myth
Miracles were Jesus' meat and potatoes so to speak. They were the fabric that wove the tapestry of what he was doing in the lives of those around him. Turning water into wine, walking on water, all were considered divinity incarnate but was this incarnate to a man, or some being that we may not be able to grasp a fair understanding of? We must remember miracles were the most talked about aspect of Jesus’ life short only the resurrection.
Included in this laundry list of miracles performed we see Jesus heal the sick, give site to the blind, raise the dead, and even cast out demons. These were a part of the every day life Jesus led and were seen by those who followed him with admonishment and those who loathed his very existence. Let’s look into some of the amazing miracles he performed and approach them from the two sides of the Jesus spectrum, one being human the other celestial or divine. We will explore each miracle and key in on the details that place it in each realm of thought considering the true nature of the man called Jesus.
The Greatest Story Ever Told
I Can Walk!!!!
Acts is one of the books of the Bible often looked at by the believers in Christ’s human nature as definitive proof of his humanity. In Acts 3:1 we find a beggar who is lame asking for money from people who come around them. Peter and John, long time followers of Jesus approach this beggar and inform him while they have no money they can give they do offer more and in the name of Jesus they tell him to rise and walk. This may sound like a Jesus miracle but Jesus was himself not present for this healing. The man ran steadfast into the church and professed the healing power and the goodness that is God.
This miracle is a great testament to the following of thought that professes Jesus has human. Peter and John were not considered divine after this miraculous act. They remained mortal men of flesh and bone, blood and flaws.
Now these two flesh and blood men performed a miracle not to much unlike those that Jesus, their friend and teacher himself had become rather famous for throughout the land. If we assume healing the sick as a legitimate miracle than why are we not placing Peter and John in the ranks of celestial beings as we often have done with Jesus? Can we assume that these two devout followers of Christ’s teachings were made more than men?
This verse gives a lot of credit to the Jesus as a man argument in that men can perform miracles with the assistance of the one all mighty God. Acts is filled with accounts of the apostles performing miracles. They cast out demons, and healed the sick.
Now we must also look from the celestial side. hose who are tuned to that belief believe Jesus granted these men this ability using his own Godly powers. The divine celestial ability of Jesus Christ came over them and granted them the will do perform miracles.
We know the beggar professed aloud the power of God but why do we have such difficulty imagining that the power of God could be worked through the hands of man? We are his people and the Bible even says he will work great works through us.
Jesus Christ regardless of his nature, be it celestial being with great cosmic powers or simply a man sent to do a job. was who he was. The amazing things he did can not be forgotten nor should their merit rely on what he may or may not have been. His attribute to the world and the life we know today are monumental. I ask why can he not be both human and divine, celestial and flesh and bone? Why do we not believe a man can make a miracle?
We often ask what would Jesus do. Celestial Jesus may use cosmic powers to manipulate the situation while man Jesus may debate on the moment and then act. Do we not see Jesus do both in different situations? His actions often understood by few but the outcome cherished by many. So before I leave you to decide was this son of a carpenter on his mother’s side and son of God on his father’s side was more than a man I simply ask this. Can’t human be divine? Thanks and God bless.