Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Came across this from prominent-theologian Michael Bird. A man I really respect. Though we don't always agree. A man who really wrestles with the Word (and really wrestles with heretics as well) . Not unlike Jacob wrestling with the pre-incarnate Christ.
Yet, I had to look at this twice. Couldn't believe what I read. Then thought, and recognized it as classic Bird. And the comments confirmed- it was not a typo. A side of "Jesus of Nazareth" rarely considered. Or rarely commented on at any rate. And it seems Nazaroo took exception.
Yet, Nazaroo took more than exception. More like offense. Don't think Bird was trying to be offensive. But if he was- it was surely edifying. Not unlike Paul saying, "have I now become your enemy by telling you the truth?" (Galatians 4:16).
And a worthwhile truth indeed. Revealing Nazaroo's "soft docetism". And Pennoyers pietistic annoyance. Yet hopefully strengthening our hypostatism.
But why is this so important?
As suggested in the comments- if you believe in such a modified humanity of Jesus... you must also believe in a modified resurrection. And if there is only hope for such a modified humanity... how much hope is there for us unmodified humans?
Far better to hope in a Jesus that is familiar with pity, pain, and yes...passion.
So hard to identify with... an impassible Jesus. May as well identify with an impassable Buddha. Identify with a blood-less coup. A blood-less covenant (Heb. 9:18).
Call me unregenerate, call me lost in my original sin... but my hope is in a Christ that continues be familiar with my struggles. Continues to be familiar with my passions.
A Christ that plausibly got an erection when his feet were kissed by a woman. And when a woman washed his feet with her hair. A very human response.
A response that an ancestor of the human Jesus likely had as well.. As his ancestor Boaz likely had- with a woman at his feet (see note on Ruth 3:8).
Indeed, an impassable Boaz... would be a Ruth-less Boaz :-)
And an impassable me... would be Christ-less me :-(
For an impassable Christ- is a priestly eunuch.
And a priestly eunuch- is no priest at all (Deut. 23:1).
And such a resurrection hope- is an impassible hope.
For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses,
but One who has been tempted in all things as we are- Yet, without sin (Heb. 4:15)
Thank God for a passionate Christ.