Tag Archives: Jesus

Review: The Jesus We Missed: The Surprising Truth About The Humanity Of Christ

The Jesus We Missed: The Surprising Truth About The Humanity Of Christ
The Jesus We Missed: The Surprising Truth About The Humanity Of Christ by Patrick Henry Reardon
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

“Sure, Jesus was the Son of God, which means he was fully man, but he was also fully God, right?”  That is certainly where most of us Christians like to draw the line.  After all, when we consider the majority of attacks on our faith, talking about Jesus’ humanity is really not a priority.  Why, then, in trying to defend our faith against those who deny the divinity of Christ do we bother looking into his humanity?

 That is perhaps a perfect question to bring you to read this impressive book by Patrick Henry Reardon.  The spotlight is turned to the humanity of Christ, his formation, and his understanding of his personal mission to save sinners.  Reardon talks about how it may be that Christ did not just know his goal was to die on the cross, but that he may have come to that understanding gradually.  After all, Mary was told that he would “save his people from their sins,” but it was not a plan fully innumerated.

Reardon also makes brilliant points about how Christ’s humanity means as much as his divinity in his role as our intercessor, our substitution, and our imputed righteousness.  After all, the fact that Jesus lived a human life and never failed to live up to God’s standard means not only that he qualified to be our substitute, but that we stand to inherit his perfect record; his perfection is credited to our account!

Although there were sections that went a bit off track into other aspects of his character, this was a book that definitely challenged me to see more clearly what the book of Hebrews means when it says that Jesus was not ashamed to call us his brothers.

Note: a copy of this book was provided by the publisher for review.  No obligation was given to give the book a positive review; all views expressed are my own and not influenced by the publisher.

Study of Hebrews: “The Builder of All Things”

Jesus, transfigured, with Moses and Elijah

< Hebrews 2:5-19 | Hebrews 3:1-6 | Hebrews 3:7-4:13 >

Whenever I have conversations with skeptics about the basics of the Christian faith, I inevitably point out that Christianity is not a system of morals but the story of God’s rescue of his people.  The response is typically varied disseminations of puzzlement because, for whatever reason, it is difficult to imagine Christianity not being about thou shalts and thou shalt nots.

“But, Aaron,” I hear from my fellow Christians, “what about the Ten Commandments? What about Jesus’ command to love God above all else and love one another as ourselves?”  Indeed there is much in the Bible about right ways of living and doing good deeds.  Jesus himself challenges us to “take up [our] cross and follow [him].”  Was this the reason that Jesus came?  If his intention was to give us a good example to live by then why did he have to die?

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Study of Hebrews: “Not Ashamed To Call Them Brothers”

< Hebrews 2:1-4 | Hebrews 2:5-19 | Hebrews 3:1-6 >

Several years ago during a class on sexual abuse, a prof shared a song by Nichole Nordeman with the class called “Small Enough.”  I was taken by the heart and the pathos of the song, especially in the context of talking with people who had been victimized by those who were supposed to care for them most.

Oh, Great God, be small enough to hear me now.
There were times when i was crying
from the dark of Daniel’s den,
and I have asked You once or twice
if You would part the sea again.
But tonight i do not need a fiery pillar in the sky,
just wanna know You’re gonna hold me if i start to cry.
Oh, Great God, be small enough to hear me now.

So far the author of Hebrews has presented Christ as “very big.”  He is the one who sits on the throne, the Son of God, and the one of whom God witnessed with signs and wonders.  The next verses, however, begin to paint a seemingly contradictory picture, yet it is in the very nature of God to be both: God the Father is different yet synonymous with God the Son.

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The Apostle Paul and the Case of the Missing Gospel

While reading the book What Is the Gospel?, I was surprised when my eyes fell upon a reference that the author, Greg Gilbert, gives to a sermon that the Apostle Paul preached where he did not reference the gospel of Jesus Christ.  Could this be true?  How could Paul, of all people, leave out the gospel?  Not only that, the sermon even made it into the pages of the Bible!

As I read it I posted the observation to Twitter, where the conversation ran around like a disturbed warren of frighten rabbits.  Some people did not seem disturbed in the least, others tried to say that Paul’s mention of Christ was his mention of the gospel, but not only does Paul not mention Christ by name, he only presents him as a righteous judge.  Not good news by any stretch of the imagination.

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Rick Warren, popular pastor of purpose, has once again flown the flag of philanthropic philosophy.  It is clear that Warren supports attractional and law-focused moralism rather than the Gospel of Jesus Christ that not only saves but compels to good work.  Here is a tweet he sent out earlier today:

CHURCH! An army’s strength isnt seen by how many eat in the mess hall but how many are fighting on the front line battle. (Online Source)

The Purpose-Driven movement is all about action, and Warren’s critique of Gospel-driven ministry is that all it does is “feed” people and neglects to challenge people to “live out the gospel.”  Unfortunately, the Bible teaches the contrary.  Over and over again we are commended to study, to teach, and exhort the story of Christ and his atoning work for us on the cross.

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