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Home » CHFWeb Forum » BibleIssues » When Jesus walked the earth....
When Jesus walked the earth.... [message #788301] Fri, 18 October 2013 04:21 Go to next message
Emily
Messages: 1904
Registered: April 2005
Location: Southeast Ohio
Senior Member
This is an ongoing (friendly) debate between several people in my church and I'm curious to hear your input. I hope I can explain it coherently!

When Jesus did all His on miracles on earth (healings, raising the dead, etc), was He doing so as a man fully submitted to God (totally relinquishing His divine power), or was He doing so as God Himself (thus demonstrating divine power on earth)? The main debate at my church is that if Jesus worked miracles as a man who was 100% submitted to God, then we can do the same as He did (John 14:12, etc). But if He worked miracles as God, then we obviously can't attain to that level of power, and living as Jesus lived on earth is out of our reach entirely.

A lot of it goes back to how one interprets Philippians 2:6-7 - "Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made Himself nothing..." (or "emptied Himself"). I have friends that believe that means Jesus laid aside *all* divine power & ability, and others that believe it was *some* but not all...and naturally that influences their beliefs on how Jesus worked the miraculous on the earth.

Anyway, I have some opinions on this but they're not fully formed yet and I'd love to hear your thoughts/beliefs. Smile

[Updated on: Fri, 18 October 2013 04:22]


Emily
Re: When Jesus walked the earth.... [message #788310 is a reply to message #788301 ] Fri, 18 October 2013 05:03 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Lisa R.  is currently offline Lisa R.
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Registered: April 2005
Location: Georgia
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My thoughts are not necessarily fully formed, either, but typically, I believe that He did all that He did as himself....fully God and fully man, inseparable.

As an aside, while I'm not clear where I stand on the cessationist view, I believe that His miracles were for the purpose of authenticating his identity--and that doesn't apply to us. (sorry, it's not the verse I thought it was, and I don't have time to search)


Blessings,
Lisa R.
Re: When Jesus walked the earth.... [message #788311 is a reply to message #788301 ] Fri, 18 October 2013 05:05 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Teri in AZ  is currently offline Teri in AZ
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Registered: April 2005
Location: Tucson, AZ
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Warning - this is not a fully thought out post, just an introduction - but either Jesus was FULLY GOD or he wasn't. I think that is the crucial matter. Jesus did all his miracles because he is fully God. That was one of the major points of the book of John - an affirmation of his deity. He is the great I AM, not just a man fully submitted to God, but God himself in human form.

I really wish I could have taken notes while I was listening to Ravi Zacharias and Dennis Prager yesterday, because they addressed this very point. There was a lot more that they said about it, but Jesus wasn't just a manifestation of God - he IS God, with all of his attributes, including his ability to create, to give life where there was none, to give sight where there was none, to cause fermentation to occur instantly, to cause two fish and five loaves to multiply enough to feed 5000 - you get the idea.


Teri in AZ

God is still on the Throne.
Re: When Jesus walked the earth.... [message #788774 is a reply to message #788301 ] Sat, 26 October 2013 03:26 Go to previous messageGo to next message
janetR  is currently offline janetR
Messages: 1937
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Location: TX
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I agree with Lisa and Teri that He was fully God and that the miracles were signs of His divinity.

The phrase "emptied himself" or "made himself nothing" is a literary device - an exaggeration for emphasis. If taken entirely literally, then both phrases would mean that he somehow ceased to exist. So the real meaning must be somewhere between that and what He had before He came to earth.

I think His life demonstrates that He did not empty Himself of any actual divinity - who He was remained the same. What He let go of was some power and authority, which He regained when He ascended to the right hand of the Father.


JanetR
daughter of the King since 1980
wife to dh since 1981
mom to five of the most incredible adults on the planet, one wonderful 18yo, and grandma to two bouncy grandsons
Re: When Jesus walked the earth.... [message #788831 is a reply to message #788774 ] Sat, 26 October 2013 15:27 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Carrie L  is currently offline Carrie L
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Registered: May 2005
Location: NH
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Agreeing with everyone else. I don't have the reference, but the first passage I thought of was when John the Baptist sent his disciples to ask Jesus if He was the one they were waiting for. Jesus' answer was to look at what He was doing... His works.

His works were part of the proof of His deity.


Carrie

Only three things are necessary to make life happy: the blessing of God, books, and a friend.
Re: When Jesus walked the earth.... [message #789027 is a reply to message #788831 ] Tue, 29 October 2013 10:35 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Emily
Messages: 1904
Registered: April 2005
Location: Southeast Ohio
Senior Member
Carrie L wrote on Sat, 26 October 2013 15:27

Agreeing with everyone else. I don't have the reference, but the first passage I thought of was when John the Baptist sent his disciples to ask Jesus if He was the one they were waiting for. Jesus' answer was to look at what He was doing... His works.

His works were part of the proof of His deity.

Oooh, that's good! I never thought of that verse in this context before.

Quote:

The phrase "emptied himself" or "made himself nothing" is a literary device - an exaggeration for emphasis. If taken entirely literally, then both phrases would mean that he somehow ceased to exist. So the real meaning must be somewhere between that and what He had before He came to earth.

I think His life demonstrates that He did not empty Himself of any actual divinity - who He was remained the same. What He let go of was some power and authority, which He regained when He ascended to the right hand of the Father.

This is what I always understood, too. I was just thrown for a loop when a few of my friends began saying that this meant that He emptied Himself of His *divinity* to the point that he was a man 100% submitted to God (which I KNOW is not true, don't worry!). I'd read of that belief but never known anyone in person who adhered to it - especially someone who I usually agree with. It just caught me by surprise.

Any other thoughts, I'd love to hear them!


Emily
Re: When Jesus walked the earth.... [message #789233 is a reply to message #789027 ] Thu, 31 October 2013 17:35 Go to previous message
LauraBeth  is currently offline LauraBeth
Messages: 245
Registered: January 2010
Location: Arizona
Senior Member
The idea that Jesus emptied himself of His deity and became just a man (albeit a man 100% devoted to God) is actually a huge theological error that the Church has been refuting for 2000+ years. It is REALLY important to hang on to the doctrine that Jesus is both fully God and fully man.

But I don't think that the question of "Can we also do miracles" is really hinged on whether Jesus was fully God or not. He did tell his disciples that they would do even greater miracles than he had done--because they would have the Holy Spirit. But the key point there is that it's never ME who does the miracles. It's always God, whether God in the flesh as Jesus, or God the Spirit working through believers.
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