Sunday, November 13, 2011

Immanuel - is God really with us?

I had a conversation yesterday with some friends who do not believe in the Trinity.  And yet, they talk about the satisfaction of the law being made through Christ, salvation being won through Christ, the restoration of our spirits in Christ, Jesus as the Son of God… and yet, they don’t believe Jesus was God made flesh…  And it made me really think…
How is my understanding of Immanuel so different?  As we approach Advent again, I am drawn to thinking again of the Incarnation.  Why is it so significant that Christ was God in the flesh?  I know that this is an age-old theological battle… and to address it in an historical, theological, or literary review kind of manner would take more than one dissertation and a whole lot more study and research than I can ever reasonably have time to do. 
So I can only speak personally… why does it matter to ME, personally, that God put on flesh?  And why is it so important to me, in my faith and practice, that God not only wore skin and walked around in His creation, but was born as a baby?
I will post on this a few times as I continue to think of this… but for today, I’m really resonating with Philippians 2:1-11.  Just this past week, I was faced with the choice to take on the humility of Christ or to ‘defend my honor’… and it was these verses that reminded me that I really did NOT have a choice as a follower of Christ.  Radical submission to the flesh & blood of the local body of Christ is only possible for me because my God took on the nature of a servant and was embodied in His own creation. 
Christ limited His limitlessness for the renewal of His beloved… He humbly, gently, submitted Himself to human constraints… and it’s out of that reality that I can admit my own constraints and humbly submit them to His limitlessness… for the renewal of his local body.

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