Monday, March 16, 2009

Hypostatic Union Issues and where Classicism errs

Correct explanation = Correct understanding and interpretation of the Kenosis (Phil 2:5ff). See my other blogs on this, e.g., The Kenosis: Was the Incarnate Christ Fully God and Fully Man?


1. Jesus Christ claimed omnipresence (Matt 28:20). - NOT the baby Jesus and NOT while He was in the flesh! The Incarnation (and the hypostatic union implications) should be limited to Jesus in the flesh ONLY. Also, all it needs is to cite one case that Jesus was NOT omnipresent and you logically prove that He was not omnipresent. Either He was always omnipresent or He never was as incarnate.

2. Jesus Divine nature was NEVER separated from God even at Calvary, although His humanity was. (Matt 27:46) - Nothing can be Biblically farther from the truth! This implies that Jesus had a split personality which was already declared as heresy by early church councils. The folks who claim this always say (philosophically, but NOT biblically) that God CANNOT separate from God. Ah but that is beginning to be a denial of the Trinity!...that there are three separate and distinct persons!...and therefore CAPABLE of separation. If Christ was never actually separated from God at Calvary, then there was NO sacrifice on His part. Physical sacrifice is not an issue. God's condemnation of sin and its punishment was never about physical torture. God's condemnation is Death (separation from God, or separation from the presence of God).

I do subscribe to the doctrine of Christ's hypostatic union - one person, two distinct natures but seamlessly merged into one. But some of these classical explanations are too Greek and coming from worldly philosophy instead of the clear teaching and revelation of God through the Bible.

It continues to amaze me that classicists cannot separate themselves from the proposition of dignum deo (which, in simpler language, is nothing other than putting God in a Box! )and they continue to dictate how God should behave instead of just honestly interpreting the revealed Word of God. Their main problem is still the concept of anthropomorphism (see my blogs on this), whereas, if they see that man is a theomorphic being, they would conclude that Christ's humanity is simply an extension of His divinity in many attributes.

Classicists tend to separate what is human nature and what is divine nature wrongly. One classic example is the Divine attribute of Jealousy. God Himself declared that Jealous is His name (Exodus 34:14). Classicists tend to force the issue that jealousy is purely a human emotion and that God being jealous is simply His way of speaking in anthropomorhic terms. Excuse me! You just said that God is incapable of being the Greatest Communicator and that you have a corner on interpreting God!

However, J. Vernon McGee has it right in saying that jealousy is the barometer of love. God is Love and with love comes jealousy - - that is a correct statement. Since man is created in God's image (theomorphism), then man has many of the Divine character though in imperfect form.

Classicists also have to get a clue and remove Omnipresence, Omniscience, Omnipotence from Divine attributes since these are simply Divine rights and can be suspended without danger to the character and nature of God. Jesus Christ Himself demonstrated this truth very conclusively. He emptied Himself of these rights but still retained the Divine nature. What else can be clearer?

All it needs is a no-nonsense down-to-earth understanding of the Kenosis. Look at the baby Jesus! At that point in history, was Jesus omniscient? omnipotent (He was so HELPLESS, in FACT!)?, omni-present? The Bible says "He that keeps Israel neither slumbers nor sleeps" (Psalm 121:3-4). But Jesus was caught sleeping in the middle of a storm at sea (Mark 4:38)! The only logical and correct interpretation of this can only be derived from a correct understanding of the kenosis.

Classicists get involved in highly theological mumbo-jumbo to explain this inconsistency. However, it was simply another confirmation of what happened at the kenosis of the Christ.