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Jesus Christ. Paul VI Institute Lay Formation Program. Christ is Divine. Scripture on Divinity of Christ.

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Jesus Christ

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Jesus Christ

Paul VI InstituteLay Formation Program

Christ is Divine

Scripture on Divinity of Christ

God … bestowed on him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, of those in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and .. confess that Jesus Christ is Lord (Philippians 2:8-11)

The Word was with God and the Word was God (John 1:1)

Church Fathers on Divinity

"Jesus whom I know as my Redeemer cannot be less than God“

“Father is in the Son as the sun is in its radiance, the thought in the word, the source in the stream”

Saint Athanasius

Church Council on Divinity of Christ

Council of Nicaea 325 … Son of God is "begotten, not made, of the same substance as the Father“ (homoousios/consubstantial)

Condemned Arius, who affirmed that the Son of God "came to be from things that were not" and was "from another substance" than that of the Father. (CCC 465)

Significance of the Deity of Christ

  • Christ worshipped as God

  • Christ the fullness of truth

  • Christ is the savior of all

  • Christ the Lord of all

  • Christ gives divine life through the sacraments

Humanity of Christ

Scripture on Humanity of Christ

Now since the children share in blood and flesh, he likewise shared in them, that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil … For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who has similarly been tested in every way, yet without sin (Hebrews 2: 14, 4:15)

Church Fathers on Humanity of Christ

“What has not been assumed has not been healed”

“Who in these last days has assumed Manhood also for our salvation.. the entire humanity fallen through sin might be created anew.”

St. Gregory of Nazianzus

Church Councils on Humanity of Christ

First Council of Constantinople (381)

Apollinarius of Laodicaea asserted that in Christ the divine Word had replaced the soul or spirit. Against this error the Church confessed that the eternal Son also assumed a rational, human soul (CCC 471)

Church Councils on Humanity of Christ

For by His incarnation the Son of God has united Himself in some fashion with every man. He worked with human hands, He thought with a human mind, acted by human choice and loved with a human heart.

Vatican II, Gaudium et Spes22 CCC 470

Significance of Humanity of Christ

  • fully reveals man to man himself

  • restores the divine likeness

  • gives divine dignity to human nature

  • Christ united in some fashion to every human person

  • His suffering blazed a trail for us to follow

    Gaudium et spes22

Unity of the Person of Christ

Unity of Christ in Scripture

No one has gone up to heaven except the one who has come down from heaven, the Son of Man (John 3:13)

The one who descended is also the one who ascended far above all the heavens, that he might fill all things.(Eph. 4:10)

Church Fathers on Unity of Christ

“there is One Son, the Word made Man for our sakes, I would say that all [attributes] are His .. both the God-befitting and besides the human.”

“That anyone could doubt the right of the holy Virgin to be called the Mother of God fills me with astonishment. Surely she must be the Mother of God if our Lord Jesus Christ is God”

St. Cyril of Alexandria

Church Councils on Unity of Christ

The Nestorian heresy regarded Christ as a human person joined to the divine person of God's Son. [Condemned by third ecumenical council, Ephesus 431]

Christ's humanity has no other subject than the divine person of the Son of God, who assumed it and made it his own (CCC 466)

Church Councils on Unity of Christ

5th ecumenical council, Constantinople II in 553:…everything in Christ's human nature is to be attributed to his divine person as its proper subject… "He who was crucified in the flesh, our Lord Jesus Christ, is true God, Lord of glory, and one of the Holy Trinity.“

CCC 468

Significance of Unity of Christ

His humanity appeared as "sacrament", that is, the sign and instrument, of his divinity and of the salvation he brings (CCC 515)

The flesh of the savior became life giving because it was united with that which is Life – the Word (Cyril)

Significance of Unity of Christ

“in Christ there suffers a God who has been rejected by his own creature” (John Paul II, Dominum et vivificantem)

"neither death nor life...nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Rom 8:38-39)

Two Natures of Christ

Scripture on Two Natures

his Son, descended from David according to the flesh, but established as Son of God in power (Romans 1:3-4)

The Word was with God and the Word was God… and the Word became flesh (John 1: 1,14)

There is also one mediator between God and the human race, Christ Jesus (I Tim. 2: 5)

Church Fathers on Two Natures of Christ

He was born God from God, almighty from the Almighty, co-eternal from the Eternal, …The same eternal, only-begotten …was born of the holy Spirit and the virgin Mary. His birth in time in no way subtracts from or adds to that divine and eternal birth of his: but its whole purpose is to restore humanity

St. Pope Leo the Great

Church Councils on Two Natures

Monophysites affirmed that the human nature had ceased to exist as such in Christ when the divine person of God's Son assumed it. Faced with this heresy, the fourth ecumenical council, at Chalcedon in 451, confessed:

two natures

one person/hypostasis

CCC 467

Church Councils on Two Natures

one and the same Son, our Lord Jesus Christ: perfect in divinity and perfect in humanity, truly God and truly man,

consubstantial with the Father as to his divinity and consubstantial with us as to his humanity

Council of Chalcedon (CCC 467)

Significance of the Two Natures

Since human nature as He assumed it was not annulled, by that very fact it has been raised up to a divine dignity in our respect too. (Gaudium et spes, 22)

“Unless He was God he would not have brought a remedy and unless He was man, he would not have set an example.” (St. Leo)

Two Wills of Christ

6th ecumenical council, Constantinople III in 681 : Christ possesses two wills … divine and human.

They are not opposed to each other, but cooperate in such a way that the Word made flesh willed humanly in obedience to his Father all that he had decided divinely with the Father and the Holy Spirit for our salvation.

CCC 475

Significance of Two Wills of Christ

Jesus prays: "My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me. . .“By accepting in his human will that the Father's will be done, he accepts his death as redemptive (CCC 612)

In Christ, and through his human will, the will of the Father has been perfectly fulfilled once for all… In the prayer of his agony, he consents totally to this will: "not my will, but yours be done.“ (CCC 2824)

Veneration of Images of Christ&Devotion to The Sacred Heart

Since the Word became flesh in assuming a true humanity…the human face of Jesus can be portrayed (seventh ecumenical council -Nicaea II in 787)

He has made the features of his human body his own, to the point that they can be venerated when portrayed in a holy image, for the believer "who venerates the icon is venerating in it the person of the one depicted“ (CCC 476-477)

Nicea II as “Triumph of Orthodoxy”

  • Contra Arianism -God made visible

  • Contra Apollinarianism -Reality of the human nature

  • Contra Nestorianism -Unity of two natures in one person

  • Contra Monophysitism -Humanity not absorbed by the divine

Devotion to the Sacred Heart

Jesus knew and loved us each and all during his life, his agony and his Passion, and gave himself up for each one of us: "The Son of God. . . loved me and gave himself for me.” He has loved us all with a human heart.

CCC 478

Sacred Heart of Jesus & Christological Councils

  • Nicea - Divine love incarnate in a human heart

  • Constantinople I - Christ loves us with a fully human heart

  • Ephesus - Christ’s human heart united to his divine person

  • Chalcedon - Divine and human love united in one person

The Saving Work of Christ

Why the Word Became Man

1. in order to save us by reconciling us with God, who "loved us and sent his Son to be the expiation for our sins“… (CCC 457)

Why the Word Became Man

2. The Word became flesh so that thus we might know God's love: "In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him”… (CCC 458)

Why the Word Became Man

3. The Word became flesh to be our model of holiness: …Jesus is the model for the Beatitudes and the norm of the new law: "Love one another as I have loved you”… (CCC 459)

Why the Word Became Man

4. The Word became flesh to make us "partakers of the divine nature": "For this is why the Word became man, and the Son of God became the Son of man: so that man, by entering into communion with the Word and thus receiving divine sonship, might become a son of God.” "For the Son of God became man so that we might become God.“ (460)

Messianic Mission of Christ

  • Prophet - Revelation

  • Priest - Redemption

  • King - Rule

Sharing in the Mysteries of Christ

  • Prophet – “Teach me Lord”

  • Priest – “Save me Lord”

  • King – “ Lead me Lord”

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