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I'm only human

Was Christ completely human?  Does He expect me to have his mind?

by Lynford Heron
The Centurion Press - Posted Thursday, September 15, 2007


There are so many unanswered questions in regards to the life of

Christ, like:
 
  1. Was He 100% man?
  2. Could Christ have sinned?
  3. Did he have an unfair advantage being the Son of God?
  4. Did He have the same human nature with like passions as us?
  5. And if He did, how was he able to live a victorious life?

Those questions have plagued the minds of many for almost 2000 years. We all want to know if God really expects us to comply with Philippians 2:5 and Matthew 5:48 in the literal sense.  Knowing the answer to those questions will determine if heaven or hell will be our inheritance.

Philippians 2:5

5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:

This scripture was not written in the form of a question or a suggestion, rather, it has the tone of a command or instruction.  However, when we consider the mind the Christ and compare it with our thought patterns, it seems impossible.  One man said, “It is not what we think we are, but what we think, we are.”  So can we actually have the mind of Christ?  Keep reading, the answer is coming…

Matthew 5:48
48 Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.

This scripture is disturbing as well when we compare humanity with divinity.  So what does it all mean?  Since eternity is at stake, we will consult the only reliable source for the answers, the Bible. Remember friends, the Bible does not need an interpreter, it will interpret it self, if studied according to ISAIAH 28:10 and 2TIMOTHY 2:15.  Also pay close attention to each word, for words have meaning and words are the only way the author can convey the message.  And most important of all, ask the Holy Spirit to give the understanding thereof. 

Question 1:  Was Christ fully man?
John 1:1, 14

1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.

John explained that the Word was God, and the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us.  Does the Bible identify the Word that was made flesh?  Yes it does, let us look at:
 
1.
   Luke 1:31 - Gabriel told Mary that she would give birth – name him Jesus
2.   Luke 2 - Speaks of the birth of Jesus, thus the word was made Flesh.

Jesus, our lord and savior veiled His divinity in the garb of human flesh and lived among.  Know we know that Christ came in the form of sinful humanity, but was He fully man?  Did He have like passions and a fallen, sinful nature like man?  To answer those questions, we must consult a few more scriptures.


Galatians 4:4

4 But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law.

This scripture is also qualifying the fact that Christ was indeed flesh for He was made of a woman.

2 John 7

7 For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist.

It is important to confirm the fact that Christ came in the flesh for many are teaching that he did not come at all.  In addition, to justify the claim that sinful humanity cannot live a victorious life, some are teaching that Christ did not come in the flesh.  Many are suggesting that His physical form was similar to that of angels and not 100% flesh.  This teaching proclaims that he was not fully human.  Rather, He is comparable to a super human without the ability to sin.  As we read on we will find out what the Bible has to say about that.

1TIMOTHY 2:5
For [there is] one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;

Here the Apostle Paul is also confirming the fact that Christ was man. 

Hebrews 2:6-7,9,16-18
6 But one in a certain place testified, saying, What is man, that thou art mindful of him? or the son of man, that thou visitest him?
7 Thou madest him a little lower than the angels; thou crownedst him with glory and honour, and didst set him over the works of thy hands:
9 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.
16 For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham.

Let us look at the definition of the word Nature:
-
Particular combination of qualities belonging to a person.
- innate characteristic disposition, temperament

In other words, the disposition and temperament of Christ were the same as any other man.  The difference is, Christ did not operate via self or flesh, but after the spirit of God.  Self was crucified moment by moment.  The Bible makes it clear that He did not have the nature of angels, He took the nature of the seed of Abraham.  That leads us to the next question, who are the seed of Abraham?

Who are the seed of Abraham?
John 8:31-33, 37
31 Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then re ye my disciples indeed;
32 And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
33 They answered him, We be Abraham's seed, and were never in bondage to any man: how sayest thou, Ye shall be made free?
37 I know that ye are Abraham's seed; but ye seek to kill me, because my word hath no place in you.

In verse 33, the Jews answered and said, “we be Abraham’s seed,” and Jesus confirmed it in verse 37.  Were the Jews angels, where they aliens or humans?  The Jews were men and women just like you and me.  However, the Jews are not the only ones that are considered Abraham’s seed, every man has the opportunity to be considered Abraham’s seed.

Galatians 3:29
If ye be Christ, then are ye Abraham’s seed.

The scriptures listed above were incorporated to quality the fact that Jesus took the nature of man and not that of angels.  Genesis 17:9-12 also confirms the fact that when the Bible speaks of Abraham’s seed, it is speaking of offspring, it is speaking of humanity.

What kind of nature did the seed of Abraham/man have?.
GENESIS 6:5
And GOD saw that the wickedness of man [was] great in the earth, and [that] every imagination of the thoughts of his heart [was] only evil continually.


GENESIS 8:21
And the LORD smelled a sweet savour; and the LORD said in his heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man's sake; for the imagination of man's heart [is] evil from his youth; neither will I again smite any more every thing living, as I have done.

I will not even attempt to add my thoughts, for who can say it better than God?  So, it is confirmed, man has a sinful nature and according to Hebrews chapter 2, Christ had the same nature.  How did He live without sinning, some may be asking?  That’s a good question, and we will find out why later.

Where did such a nature came from?

Romans 7:23-24
But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.
O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?

What is going on with Paul?  Is he possessed?  What is this other law in his members that is warring against his mind?  Friends, Paul is asking for deliverance, but will he ever be free from that other law which is in his members?  First, let us continue our search to find out where that other law came from.

GENESIS 3:15
And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.

Enmity is passed on to all men.

Enmity

It is defined as conflict, a feeling or condition of hostility; hatred; ill will; animosity; antagonism.
 
When Adam sinned, God in His tender mercy towards man placed enmity within man.  Without enmity, we would be completely controlled by the devil, completely evil.  But as a result of enmity, there is a war within man, good warring against evil.

ROMANS 7:19
For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.

All together, this is the nature of man.  We are in a sad state when you really think about it, and that is why we need a savior.  But what would a savior do for us?  What did Christ do for us?  Let us answer the question about Christ’s humanity first. 

Come, let us reason together.

if Christ was fully man, just like you and me, with the same sin nature, then enmity would have been within His flesh as well, correct?  Let us find out.

Ephesians 2:15

Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, [even] the law of commandments [contained] in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, [so] making peace;

Friends, the jews did not accept Christ for who He is, and as a result, many were lost.  Please, do not make the same mistake.

Dear reader, I am going to ask you to read Ephesians 2:15 over, and over, and over again, with a prayer in your heart.  It is important for us to understand this scripture.

* Christ abolished enmity within His flesh.  This simply means that it had to exist for Him to abolish it.  But why was enmity found in Christ?  Well, according to Genesis 3:15, God put enmity within man so that man would not be completely controlled by the devil, and because Christ was 100% man, he inherited everything that came with humanity. 

Abolishing enmity means, no more war, no more conflict, no more animosity, no more hostility, and no more propensities towards evil, thereby making peace.  We too can share in that peace if we accept Jesus Christ as our personal savior and allow Him to live out His life through us.  There is victory in Christ Jesus. Paul came to that conclusion, and this is what Paul said.


GALATIANS 2:20
I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.

Christ made in himself of twain one new man, so making peace.  Enmity was not abolished in all men, it was abolished in Christ.  That is why it is important to be crucified with Christ, and like Paul, allow Christ to live in us.  If we can do that, then perpetual victory is guaranteed.  If we can do that, then we will experience the peace of Christ.

The Bible makes it clear that Christ was fully man with the same sin nature, for enmity was in his flesh as well.  Like Paul, there was another law within the members of Christ, warring against the law of His mind, yet without sin. But how was it possible, considering that he was tempted in all points like as we are, yet without sin?  The answer is coming up, but first I want us to consider the subject of temptation.

Temptation:
Hebrews 2:17-18
17 Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people.
18 For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted.

Suffered = Anguish and pain

That fact that He was not above temptation, the fact that he was tempted means that He could have sinned.

Once again, Paul is confirming the fact that Jesus was fully man in verse 17 of
Hebrews 2.  He was made like unto his brethren, in other words, he was made like man.  We can all be a source of comfort to those that are hurting, but if we experience the pain of those that are hurting, then we would be more effective, for we could truly relate, connect and empathize with the hurting.  That is why it behoved Christ to be made like unto this brethren, so that he could truly connect and empathize with hurting sinners. However, pay close attention to verse 18.  The Bible said that he suffered, being tempted.  Why did He suffer? 

The word suffered is synonymous with anguish and pain, so if Christ was above or immune to temptation, then why did it have such a devastating effect on him?  Because He was man and He was tempted in all points like as we are.  Is temptation a fun thing?  Can temptation be very disturbing and painful at times?  I would be the first to answer yes to those questions.  Because Christ was fully man, temptation had the same effect on Him, which is why he suffered.  Let us look at the definition of temptation, but before we do that, consider the scripture below.

Hebrews 4:15

For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as [we are, yet] without sin.

Amen and hallelujah!!!  Christ understands because He was tempted as well. In the next section we will find out why He was able to remain sin free considering he was tempted in all points like as we are. But until then, let us look at the definition of temptation.

James 1:14-15 – Temptation Defined
14 But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.
15 Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.

This could be a very upsetting and disturbing scripture for many if we do not approach it prayerfully.  Why?  Well there are a few points to consider:

1.  Verse 14 says, every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.  We already confirmed the fact that Christ was fully man; therefore, Christ is also included in the “every man.”  It is not pleasant when we view our saviour as being drawn away of His own lust, and to make it worse, He was enticed, but without sin.  Verse 14 explains what happens when man is tempted, but temptation is not sin.  Temptation becomes a problem if we allow lust to conceive, as the Bible says, then it bringeth forth sin.  Have you ever been tempted and was victorious?  Think about some of the more difficult ones to overcome and how hard it was on you.  Temptation is hard for all of us, and we suffer because of desire.  The desire to do something we know we should not do. This could simply be the desire for food, wanting to eat something we know we should not eat, and we suffer because the craving is so strong.  But even though we are enticed, if we cry out for Jesus, He will give us the strength to overcome.  If we are not drawn away of our own lust and enticed, then it would not be temptation.  Being tempted (drawn away and enticed) is not something to feel bad about, for temptation is not sin.

I hope I prepared you well for James 1:13-15, by explaining the subject of enmity and confirming the fact that Christ was fully man with like passions.  We should not get offended, in fact, we should rejoice, for now we realize that Jesus truly understands.  I appreciate His sacrifice of love and His death on the cross even more now, when I understood how much he suffered for our sins.

Hebrews 2:17-18 should make more sense now in understanding why he suffered as a result of enmity being a part of His members. This is why he is able to succour us, this is why He is our merciful high priest. 

Friends, Christ did not have an unfair advantage, he was completely 100% man.  The Christian life is possible, and the invitation to be ye perfect as Christ was, is literal.  However, it is not possible with human efforts, every man need to get to the place where Paul did in saying, “I am crucified with Christ, nevertheless I live, but it is not me living, it is Christ which lives within me.”  Jesus is the answer, and that is the only way the victorious life is possible.  Using humanity as an excuse will not suffice.  In fact, nothing will suffice.  No sin will make it to heaven.  And if sin is found in us, we will not make it to heaven.  A desire for heaven with the occasional sins here and there, taking on step forward and two steps backward is not going to cut it.  We all need to establish a consistent surrendered life that is free of sin, and this is possible if we stay in Christ.  Remember friends, the devil cannot penetrate Christ and get to you.  The only safe place in this evil world is with Christ. 

The roller coaster, high school relationship where we break up with Christ to make up is very risky.  What if Christ returned while we are beating up on ourselves for making the same silly mistakes over and over again?  What if we attend church weekly, but died in a tragic car accident and never made it up with the Lord?  Remember, unconfessed sins are unforgiven sins.  There is no repentance in the grave.  Christ was just like you and me, and he was able to live 33 years without sin, and He expect nothing less from us.  However, it is easier for us, for Christ already won the victory for us.  We can never live that sin free life, so Christ has offered to live out His life within us, if we will accept it.  But how do I allow Him to do that you might ask?  We will answer that in the next section.  However, let us pick up where we left off on temptation.

The word lust is a strong word, and for many, reading that Christ was drawn away of his own lust is disturbing, so let us look at its meaning.

What is lust?

-  "lusts" are objects of desire
-  Intense or unrestrained sexual craving
-  An overwhelming desire or craving
-  desire; inclination; wish

We will find out that lust means desire and the context of the sentence will give its meaning.  Consider the following:
 
PROVERBS 6:25
Lust not after her beauty in thine heart; neither let her take thee with her eyelids.

This is the first example.  Let us look at how the word is used in other context.

MATTHEW 5:28
But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.

ROMANS 7:7
What shall we say then? [Is] the law sin? God forbid. Nay, I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet.

Paul says, for I had not known lust, except the law had said, thou shall not covet.  What does the word covet means?  It means desire.  Let us look at how the word covet is used in the Bible so that we can better understand the word lust.

Exodus 20:17

Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that [is] thy neighbour's.

Deuteronomy 5:21
Neither shalt thou desire thy neighbour's wife, neither shalt thou covet thy neighbour's house, his field, or his manservant, or his maidservant, his ox, or his ass, or any [thing] that [is] thy neighbour's.

Covet = Desire = lust = covet

Words has meaning and meaning is given by the context of the sentence.  One word can convey two different messages based on the context of the sentence.  However, the message of Exodus 20 and Deuteronomy 5 are the same even though different words were employed to relay the message.  The words covet and desire were used, and based on the context, there meanings are the same, which is desire.

1CORINTHIANS 10:6
Now these things were our examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted.

Therefore we should lust after goods things.  But why use lust and good in the same sentence?  Because the use or meaning of a word changes base upon the context in which it is used.  In this instance, the word lust takes on a softer tone making reference to desire.

1Corinthians 12:31
But covet earnestly the best gifts: and yet shew I unto you a more excellent way.

There are negative connotations to the words lust and covet in the minds of many.  However, we have to focus on the meaning of the word based on the context which it is used.  Covet in Corinthians equals desire.  At one point we are told not to covet, as if it is not good to covet at all, and at another point we are told to covet good things.  Therefore, the word in itself is not bad; it is used to communicate a message.

Therefore, the word lust does not always have a sexual meaning.  Lust basically means desire.  We can lust after food, clothes, cars, computers, etc,…  So when the Bible speaks of us being drawn away of our own lust (desire), Deuteronomy 5:21 helps us to understand that this desire could be for a house that does not belong to us, a field, a donkey or a cow. 

I said all of that to say, when James explained that every man is tempted when he is drawn away of his own lust and enticed, I want us to understand that the word lust does not only mean sexual desire, the word lust covers anything that someone could desire. 

When confirming the humanity of Christ, it is very important to cover the subject of temptation for it helps us to see that Christ was fully human.  Humans are tempted every day, and to think that Christ was tempted in all points as we are helps us to affirm his humanity.  However, I do not want us to focus on how we are tempted, and then think about Christ.  No, what we should focus on are the last few words in Hebrews 4:15, and those are, “but without sin.”  And I say praise the Lord and Halleluiah to that, AMEN.

Now that we know that Christ was 100% human, we need to know how he was able to live without sin, which leads us to the next section, The testimony and faith of Jesus.

Testimony/Faith
Who is a witness? A witness is someone that has a first hand knowledge of something.  What does a witness do?  They testify.  When they are finished testifying, that is considered their testimony, correct?

REVELATION 12:11
And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.

Friends, to overcome this world, we must have a testimony.  Did Christ have a testimony?  If yes, what was the word of His testimony?

JOHN 3:32
And what he hath seen and heard, that he testifieth; and no man receiveth his testimony.

When we read the previous verses, it is clear that the “He” in John 3:32 is Christ. So, Christ came to this world as a witness, testifying about his father’s kingdom, of all that he saw and heard.  He was preaching the gospel of the kingdom, God’s story.

What is the gospel?  It is God’s story.  Christ was on the witness stand, testifying to the world, revealing the character of God.

MATTHEW 24:14
And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.

MARK 1:14
Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God.

Jesus brought with Him, His own personal testimony about His father’s kingdom, revealing the that fact that God is love.  Jesus spent a lot of time with the father in prayer.  He knew Him intimately; He had a first hand knowledge of the power and providence of God.  He believed that his Father would keep Him, and everything that He did, He did through the His father.  He relied completely on his father for everything, minding the things of the spirit and not of the flesh.  The faith that He had in His father brought Him through.

John 14:10
10 Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works.

John 8:28
28 Then said Jesus unto them, When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am he , and that I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things.

John 5:19
19 Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.

As we consider John 5:30 and Jude 1:24 as well, it is evident that the faith of Jesus and His personal testimony allowed Him to overcome this world.

So now we know that Christ was 100% human.  We know that he could have sinned because He was tempted in all points.  We also know that He did not have an unfair advantage, because He was made like unto His brethren.  In addition, we also learned that He did not take on the nature of angels, rather, He took on the nature of fallen humanity.  We also know that He did not take on the nature of Adam before the fall, because enmity was in His flesh, and enmity was placed in Adam and Eve after they sinned.  Therefore, Christ did not have an advantage, He was 100% human, with the same nature and like passions.

Friends, saying, “I am only human” will never excuse anyone from the penalty of sin, for Jesus was also only human.  If we exercise the same faith and trust in Him as He did in His father, the victory is guaranteed.  It is possible to live without sinning if we stay in Christ, but that is a place where many people do not want to spend all their time.  After fulfilling their religious obligation, they are no longer on God’s time, it is now time to take care of their business.  So we open the door from inside and walk out of Christ.  But if we abide in Christ, we cannot sin for the devil cannot penetrate to get to us.

1 John 3:6
6 Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not:


The provision has been made, and humanity is no excuse for a life of sin, for Christ also was only human. 

Study Topics

  The Gospel
  Creation or Evolution
  Accidental Sins
  Baptism
  The Sabbath Day?
  Man's Nature
  Testimony or Law
  Christ or the Law
  Religious Prejudice
  Marriage/Divorce 
  Successful Marriage
  
I'm only human 
 





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