Nature of Christ
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. ... The Word became flesh, and lived among us. We saw his glory, such glory as of the one and only Son of the Father, full of grace and truth. (Extracts from John 1)
|Nature of Christ|
|SERMONS, ESSAYS AND OPINIONS|
The Bible tells us that Jesus is God in human flesh (John 1:1 and John 1:14). This doctrine is called the hypostatic union and was especially defined by the Council of Chalcedon in 451 AD. Jesus is not half God and half man. He is fully divine and fully man. Understanding this completely is not possible in this life.
Christological Controversies of the 4th and 5th century
Disagreements regarding Christ's nature have occurred since the times of the early church causing considerable tension at times. The disagreements have included Nestorianism in which Jesus is considered to not only have two natures but essentially two persons and monophysitism where Jesus is thought to have only one nature.
Arianism was one of the earliest major Christological heresies to arise. Arius, in the third century BC, taught that Jesus was human, but not divine. This issue was addressed at the Council of Nicea and refuted. It was argued by church leaders that if Christ was not fully divine and sinless, then how could he offer a perfect sacrifice. Passages such as John 1:1 were called upon as Biblical evidence of Jesus' deity.
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