Thursday, August 07, 2008

He’s the real deal

I am spending some time in the Apostle John’s three letters and plan to begin teaching from these letters later this month. It is widely held that John wrote these letters sometime after 85AD. The church had been off and running for some time, but significant doctrinal issues where beginning to arise including Gnosticism. One of the many heresies of the Gnostics is that Jesus didn’t really have a human body (Docetism). Another take on this heresy was that the divine Son of God joined Jesus the man after baptism and then left him before his death (Cerinthianism).

John begins his first letter by addressing these faulty beliefs when he says:
“That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched – this we proclaim concerning the Word of Life. The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the father and has appeared to us. We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son, Jesus Christ.” – 1 John 1:1-3
Bottom line: Jesus is real. John is clearly and plainly pointing this out to the Gnostics and letting them know that Christ was fully God, but also fully man. He wasn’t just some spirit being. He is saying, “Look guys, we talked to Him, lived with Him, and touched Him. We hung out with Him. He’s the real deal! Stop it already with your messed up beliefs and teachings.”

Both the deity and the humanity of Christ Jesus are essential.

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