“The greatness of God was not cast off, but slightness of human nature was put on. “In order that the body of Christ might be shown to be a real body, He was born of a woman; but in order that His Godhead might be made clear He was born of a virgin.” —St. Thomas Aquinas
[LINK] Jesus was both God and man. Yeah, it’s not easy to wrap your brain around that truth. And honestly, if you start trying to understand
it, you’ll get even more confused. So let’s just establish that as an undeniable truth (and mystery) and move on from there.
Because while that may be a mystery (something we can’t fully know or understand), the fact that Jesus became flesh and blood helps us to know God more deeply than we ever did.
The God part means He didn’t sin. The man part means He experienced the same things we do—both good and bad.
The Bible sums it up this way: Since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet was without sin (Hebrews 4:14-15).
[THINK] When Jesus became human, He gave us a new understanding of God.
But here’s something that didn’t happen—this wasn’t one of those reality show moments when people trade lives and gain a better understanding of what people really go through. Jesus didn’t learn anything new or gain insight into what our lives are really like—after all, He already knew all of that in detail (read Psalm 139).
But by watching His life and watching how He dealt with everything that was thrown at Him, we gain a connection to God like no people in the Old Testament ever experienced. Instead of just telling us how we should live and what He thinks about us, God showed us.
[LIVE] Yes, you might be thinking, He was man, but He also was still the Son of God. So as bad as life got, it couldn’t have been too much to deal with, right?
Wrong. The Bible says Jesus was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering. Like one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not (Isaiah 53:3). Aside (and this is a big aside) from His excruciatingly painful death, Jesus dealt with betrayal (John 18:2-5); fame (John 6:14-15); and demanding people (John 6:26-27). And those are just a few examples of what Jesus’ life looked like.
What of Jesus’ experiences on this earth do you most identify with? What hits home and makes you go “that’s my life”?
If you’re not sure, take some time and flip through one of the Gospels—Matthew, Mark, Luke, or John. Follow Jesus’ footsteps and see if what He experienced looks like what you’ve been through (or where you’re at) as well.
[NXT LVL] As you read through the Bible, write down some experiences Jesus had and how He dealt with each situation. Then think through how you would normally handle the same situation.
Reprinted with permission from YouthWalk magazine, © 2005 Walk Thru the Bible, Inc. To learn more about YouthWalk, visit www.youthwalk.org
Tim WalkerPrintable View