“For the child within her (Mary) was conceived by the Holy Spirit. And she will have a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” (Matthew 1:20)
In my last post I explained the term protocol as it relates to human personal affiliation and our relationship with God. We saw protocol as a code of conduct which gives one the right of passage, so to speak, to something or someone. We saw that the protocol between God and man is His divine Love. Love gives us right of passage to the conviction that all His actions are done for our ultimate good and welfare in mind. It began with human creation when He made man in His own image of Love and likeness in immortality. (Gen.1:26-27) We must never doubt His Love for us. So we read, “But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is (Love), and that He is a rewarder (of immortality to) those who diligently seek Him” (Heb.11:6).
We saw that man was given a mind capable of expressing faith and making choices one way or another between two divergent pathways: the “tree of life” (Love/other-centeredness); the “tree of of the knowledge of good and evil” (fear/self-centeredness). We read that man was given the freedom to choose. This was necessary for Love to grow between man and his God – through choices based upon Love or fear and sin. God desires that we freely Love Him as He has chosen to do likewise toward man. God did not have to create man. Man was not made to complete God in any way, shape, and form. God could have lived well alone in His Triune Being as He has from eternity. But it was simply out of His overflowing and unfathomable Love that He freely chose to create humans after His likeness. Do you think God relishes in witnessing all the aggravation, suffering and pain man has upon this earth? But He knows His Love will ultimately triumph over all, and our God-given freedom plays an all-important part in the human state of affairs.
In the previous post, we read this passage of scripture which reveals how God plans to bring us into His eternal family forever, “These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life” (1 John 5:16, NASB; also John 3:16-17). In other words, we see the depth of His Love by the way He sacrificed His Son so He can fulfill His purpose of making us into His likeness, which is the likeness of His Son.
Let’s continue from where we left off. We ended asking…why Jesus? Why is He central in God’s purpose of bringing humans into His divine family and imbuing man with Love and the gift of immortality? Is Jesus the only Savior of mankind? Is He the only one capable of undertaking the act of atonement for the sin of the world? Let’s dissect this…
First, God is offering something to man which only He can give: Love, immortality, and reign (Gen.1: 26-27). These are divine attributes which only God can confer upon another. And amazingly, that was God’s singular purpose for making man. He created man for the purpose of being vessels of His Love, to inherit immortality, and to reign with His Son. Man cannot achieve his God-given destiny without God Himself being part and parcel of it. Thereby, only He knows the way to man’s destiny, and has made it abundantly clear to us in His word, the Bible.
Now, consider that Jesus was the only human to ever have been begotten by the Holy Spirit. There is an obvious reason why God did this, and it has everything to do with His Love for mankind. I will quote from Dr. Bruce Ware, an esteemed theologian and author in the evangelical tradition, “Christ alone was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of a virgin (Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:18-25; Luke 1:26-38), and as such, he alone qualifies to be Savior. Why does this matter? Only as the Holy Spirit takes the place of the human father in Jesus’ conception can it be true that the one conceived is both fully God and fully man. Christ must be both God and man to atone for sin, but for this to occur, he must be conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of a human virgin. No one else in the history of the world is conceived by the Spirit and born of a virgin mother. Therefore, Jesus alone qualifies to be Savior.” (www.jesus.org)
Jesus, who proceeded from the Triune Godhead of the Father, the Logos (Son), and the Spirit, became a human without ceasing to be God. (John 1:14; 1 John 5:7) Because Jesus is eternally of one indivisible substance with the Triune Godhead, He could not stop being God when He took upon Himself His human form through Mary His human mother. He was fully God and fully man. In other words, God and man are made one in Christ. Hence, the prophet Isaiah was inspired to state a unique name: Immanuel, which means “God with us” (Isa.7:14; Matt.1:23).
It is logical to conclude that the Spirit, who is of and from the same hypostatic union with the Son in the Triune Godhead, was instrumental and responsible for the human conception of Jesus. Micah spoke of Jesus’ coming and origin, saying, “His goings forth are from long ago, from the days of eternity” (Mic.5:2, NASB). As a man, Jesus voluntarily abandoned the exercise of certain prerogatives of His divine attributes in order to assume our humanity through Mary. (Phi.2:7; Heb.4:15)
Jesus proceeded from the Triune Godhead of the Father, the Logos, and the Spirit (Rublev’s Icon of the Trinity, Wiki Commons)
He lived a perfect life, was crucified as mankind’s Savior, was resurrected and ascended back to God and back to the glory He had with His Father in the Triune Godhead. By His bodily resurrection, He glorified our humanity in Himself and joined it to the Triune Life of God forever. He is the true and worthy human substitute doing the work of humanity’s High Priest from within the Triune Being of God for man’s physical and spiritual salvation.
So we saw that divine Love is God’s protocol which man must receive and accept in order to relate with God. That Love is expressed to man through His Son, Jesus. In other words, Jesus is the protocol man assumes which gives him the right of passage to enter into Loving relationship with God the Father. This is made possible through the power of the Spirit. Jesus told the disciples, “Very truly I tell you, it is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you” (John 16:7). Paul said, “God’s Love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us” (Rom.5:5). In this we see man living the “Triune Life” in Christ instead of the “solitary life” in himself.
Paul said this, “He (God) predestined us to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He (Jesus) might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters” (Rom.8:29). God has conformed Himself to us by becoming human, now man must conform himself to God by becoming like Jesus through faith. Remember, faith is an attribute which only a human can activate through his decisions and actions. No other living species has this ability to express the attribute of faith. Even and atheist lives by faith believing there is no God. By conforming to the image of His Son through faith, we receive the protocol to enter into the very presence of the Almighty Father.
What this says is we are made children of God only by conforming to Jesus’ likeness, who is God’s Son, and we are made brothers and sisters of Jesus. The mold of God’s “image and likeness” which man must conform is seen plainly and unmistakably in His Son. The scriptures tell us, “The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of His being (“image and likeness”), sustaining all things by His powerful word” (Heb.1:3; Gen.1:26-27).
Listen, unless we see and believe Jesus Christ as the eternal Son of God who existed with Him in His Triune Being from eternity, and that He is the expression of God’s Love to man, yes, Jesus the Love protocol we must utilize to enter into relationship with God, we have not taken the first step of faith in life’s journey of transformation to God’s “image and likeness” by becoming Love as He is Love, and inheriting immortality as He is immortal. Jesus has eternally existed in the Triune Godhead with the Father and the Spirit. Before His death on Calvary, Jesus prayed to the Father these words, “And now, Father, glorify Me in Your presence with the glory I had with You before the world began” (John 17:5: also see Micah 5:2; Heb.7:3). So, Jesus was fully aware of His own deity while in His human form.
Paul said to the Colossians that Jesus is the only One who makes us complete before Almighty God, the Father. (Col.2:10) You may Go to our “Mission Statement” at this link and find out more about the meaning of “Triune Life”: http://bulamanriver.net/?page_id=3381
If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to write to me in the space provided below, or email me on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Until we meet again in my next post, may the blessings of the God who ceaselessly expresses Himself in His dependable Triune Love, be with you always. May the Spirit enliven your spirit and make all things concerning you possible as you live the “Triune Life” as a Bulamanriver.* Be strong in the Lord’s joy.
* Bulamanriver” is the metaphor describing the union of man with the Love of the Triune God flowing in humans, making possible the “Triune Life” – the source of the miraculous life in man. To read the many facets of life of the Bulamanriver, go to my website www.bulamanriver.com where you can order a copy of my Book.
All scriptures are taken from the NIV Version 2011, unless stated otherwise.
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