Sunday, 08 February 2015 14:33
(BY: ATTY. BATAS MAURICIO) LIFE’S INSPIRATIONS: “… Jesus answered… `If you really know me, you will know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him… Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father’…” (Jesus Christ, our God and Savior, in John 14:7 and 9, the Holy Bible).
JESUS: ALWAYS GOD, NEVER A MAN! Hugh Michael Edenburn, an American who now lives in Catbalogan City and who I came to know when he became president of a local Rotary Club in Samar, made a call to me several days ago that launched me into a lot of thinking. In an apparent attempt to prove to me his spiritual maturity, Mike blurted: “Jesus is both man and God”.
That simple statement from Mike haunted me for several days and made me ask one question: is Jesus really both man and God? After some thought, I came to the conclusion that, no, Jesus cannot be both man and God, even if He came into this world in flesh and blood.
Jesus is God (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) all throughout. Even when He was here on earth, Jesus was always God. He was flesh and blood alright, when He went on with His work here, but He remained to be, and was always, God. His having assumed the form of a human did not make Him man. Rather, it proved He was, or is, God, capable of doing anything He likes!
JESUS AS GOD ALL THE TIME: THE TRUTH THAT SETS US FREE:The Bible, in its many acceptable and unacceptable translations, supports the view that Jesus was (and is) always God, as He was indeed God even when looked human. In John 1:14, it is there categorically stated that even after He came down from heaven and lived among men, He exhibited, and many saw, “his glory—the glory of the one and only, full of grace and truth.”
The phrase “the glory of the one and only, full of grace and truth”, could only mean the “glory of God”, which proves that, notwithstanding He looked like a man, He talked like a man, and behaved like a man, Jesus continued to be God all the time.
And that was what Jesus wanted to say, the truth which He said would set us free: He is God, and is never man. The story of Jesus asking His disciples, in Matthew 16:18, who He was, according to the people, and according to His disciples who had been allowed to be with Him, showed He wanted to be recognized for what He really was (and is), and that is, that He is God.
FAITH IN JESUS AS GOD: FOUNDATION OF HIS CHURCH: Note that after His disciples told Jesus that the people thought He was Jeremiah, Isaiah, or even John the Baptist—in short, that He was a mere man—Jesus had to ask, in turn, the disciples who these disciples thought He was. He had to do that, to afford Simon, son of Jonas, the opportunity to exclaim, “You are God and Savior” (the other translations of what Simon actually said here should be revised!).
When Simon publicly recognized, in a firm and resolute way, Jesus as God and Savior, Jesus went on to say that Simon’s “rock-like” declaration of faith of who Jesus was (or is) did not come from human intelligence, but was given by the Father in heaven. Jesus then said that it was upon that “rock-like” faith that He was God and Savior, that He would build His Church.
In fact, in many other parts of the Bible (see John 8:58 and the stories about Thomas and Philip), Jesus strained to inform or enlighten His disciples that He was God Himself. We will tackle these stories in the future, God willing, but, all of these prove, without any shadow of doubt, that Jesus was never a man, He was always God, even when He looked like a man!
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