Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Christology 101

Since, apparently, at least one reader has become hopelessly confused by posts on Christ's headship, here's a little primer on some of the very basic Christological doctrines, drawn from the WLC:

Q. 36. Who is the mediator of the covenant of grace?

A. The only mediator of the covenant of grace is the Lord Jesus Christ, who, being the eternal Son of God, of one substance and equal with the Father, in the fullness of time became man, and so was and continues to be God and man, in two entire distinct natures, and one person, forever.

Q. 37. How did Christ, being the Son of God, become man?

A. Christ the Son of God became man, by taking to himself a true body, and a reasonable soul, being conceived by the power of the Holy Ghost in the womb of the virgin Mary, of her substance, and born of her, yet without sin.

Scripture says that (not in those words) and I believe that.

-Turretinfan

35 comments:

EgoMakarios said...

So explain how the above relates to your denial of Adam as an ancestor of Christ.

Turretinfan said...

EM:

You're confused.

I have never denied that Adam is an ancestor of Christ.

In fact, I gladly affirm that Adam is an ancestor of Christ.

You need to try to get your facts straight before you go around making wild accusations.

-Turretinfan

GeneMBridges said...

Adam being an ancestor of Christ and Christ being "in Adam" are not convertible ideas.

And notice the question begging assertions of Ego and his friends:

The logic is something like this: Adam is an ancestor of Christ. Christ is sinless. Ergo, no original sin.

That would be the fallacy of composition, as if what is true of Christ is therefore true of all people.

But how does the conclusion follow from the two previous statements?

Why not: Adam is an ancestor of Christ. Christ did not sin. But Christ was peccable?

That, by the way, is a standard argument for the peccability of Christ that comes from Libertarians.

natamllc said...

For what its worth gene,

Satan is still undefeated in his own crazy world!

If he can get egomakarios to go along with that reasonable presupposition, he has at least got egomakarios where he failed to get the "Son" of Adam!

:)

TheoJunkie said...

[...sigh...]

March on, soldier.

EgoMakarios said...

Why not: Adam is an ancestor of Christ. Christ did not sin. But Christ was peccable?

That, by the way, is a standard argument for the peccability of Christ that comes from Libertarians.


If you deny that Christ was able to sin you deny that he was tempted.

Turretinfan said...

EM wrote: "If you deny that Christ was able to sin you deny that he was tempted."

I answer:
That's both an unsupported and an untrue assertion. It's an example of the logical fallacy known as the non sequitur.

-Turretinfan

Saint and Sinner said...

"If you deny that Christ was able to sin you deny that he was tempted."

This begs the question under dispute: is libertarian free-will true?

GeneMBridges said...

Exactly, S&S

We've already been over that ground with Ego before. He constantly assumes what he needs to prove.

Notice the logic:

If Christ was not able to sin, then the temptation was not "real."

If man is not able to believe on his own, the "free offer" is not "sincere."

If Christ did not die for everybody without exception in exactly the same way, then the atonement is a "lie."

These are all just different ways of saying "ability limits responsibility."

Where is the supporting argument?

Also, if you pay close attention to what the Serpent said in the Garden, he was saying the same thing. This is the oldest heresy in the book, the one that gets repeated all the time. He told Eve that they did have the ability to become like God by eating the fruit. Ever since man has insisted he has the ability to defy God's decrees.

But we can play with that for a moment. If Christ was able to sin, Ego is stuck with the proposition that God can sin, or will he divide the 2 natures of Christ such that the divine cannot but the human can?

I'd also point out that that alternative is the logical outcome, and it is rather ironic that some Orthodox interlocuters out there will not hesitate to state that Christ is peccable while trying to tar Calvinism with Nestorianism or monotheletism. However, the natural result of the peccability of Christ would either be outright heresy (God can do evil) or Nestorianism, both of which the Orthodox seek to deny. I find this rather humorous.

I wonder what exactly sets Ego's theology apart from Orthodoxy? Other than his denial of Paedobaptism, Ego's theology is virtually synonymous with Rome or Constantinople, yet he constantly asserts he denies both. I find this humorous too.

EgoMakarios said...

This begs the question under dispute: is libertarian free-will true?

In other words, am I even really tempted? That's the Calvinist answer then, that Jesus was tempted in every point like us, and since we don't have free will (so they tell us) our temptations aren't really real, so neither was his.

Turretinfan said...

EM,

"In other words, am I even really tempted?"

No, that's not what Gene meant. Did you really think he meant that? If so, there's some confusion from your side that we might be able to resolve.

"That's the Calvinist answer then, that Jesus was tempted in every point like us, and since we don't have free will (so they tell us) our temptations aren't really real, so neither was his."

No, that's not it at all. If you really think that's the Calvinist answer, then you're seriously mistaken.

May we clarify the Calvinist position for you, so that you won't be mistaken?

-Turretinfan

EgoMakarios said...

and sure, do all the clarifying you want. you don't need to ask.

GeneMBridges said...

Notice that rather than actually, you know, produce an answer, Ego simply cruises on and continues to beg the question.

It's also really cute, because in times past, he's told me that we've redefined terms - another unsupported assertion.

What, Ego, is the Calvinist answer?

And, as usual, Ego asserts his own position without supporting argument. Why would Jesus have to be peccable in order for the temptation to be "real?" Where does Scripture define the "reality" of temptation in the terms that Ego has articulated? We'll wait while he ponders his answer, since he regularly fails to answer questions put to him.

Turretinfan said...

In a comment I rejected as excessively blasphemous, EM incorrectly suggested that Gene's view of the impeccability of Christ (and I am obviously paraphrasing a bit):

a) denies the true humanity of Christ; and

b) is contradicted by Jesus sweating blood.

But, of course, Gene affirms that Jesus is both fully God and fully man, and there are plenty of other explanations for Jesus sweating blood, namely the prospect of excruciating (pun convenient) pain.

EM also wished to clarify that his earlier comment was directed to S&S's position, not Gene's position, and EM wishes Triablogue would stop discussing torture.

-Turretinfan

Turretinfan said...

Incidentally, Gene, while I don't think EM's post answers the question you asked, I'll forward you his actual comments so you can judge for yourself.

In my view, asserting the peccability of God is blasphemy, and so too strenuous assertions of it are not going to be publicly published.

-Turretinfan

GeneMBridges said...

Ego, complaining to me about Triablogue's current postings will do no good.

1. If you'll notice I have not participated in that discussion.

2. Each member of the team is free to post what he wishes. We don't all agree on everything, and we are not a cabal that sets an agenda for the week or month or year with respect to our discussions.

3. If you dislike the discussions, then here's a suggestion: Don't read them.

Yes, asserting that God is peccable is blasphemy. This is disturbing since he has condemned me personally to hell within the past few weeks...

4. Impeccability does not entail a denial of the humanity of Christ. EM, you're STILL begging the question. How does being not able to sin entail a denial of humanity? Is it your position that a man can fall from grace after the 2nd Coming? Is your position that of Origen?

5. Thus far, EM, your position seems to entail the doctrine of "Free Will" run amok. That's idolatry.

6. Where is the supporting argument for God having libertarian freedom?

EgoMakarios said...

6. Where is the supporting argument for God having libertarian freedom?

So now God doesn't have free will either? You have always said that Adam had free will before the fall. If Jesus was what Adam was before the fall, should he not have had free will?

Turretinfan said...

Manuel Cullwell asks: "TF, I want to know How it is you think you are not denying the humanity of Jesus? "

I answer: I think I'm not denying the humanity of Jesus, because I explicitly affirm that Jesus was both fully man (human) and fully God.

Furthermore, it's not just me. All the Reformed churches uniformly agree on this point.

I'm not sure why that's difficult for you and/or EgoMakarios to figure out. Where's the roadblock?

-Turretinfan

Turretinfan said...

MC:
I got four comments from you in the last hour, the last one complaining about the silence.

It seems that the gist of your objection is either:

a) That if Jesus was fully divine and fully human, then Jesus was not really human; or

b) Because ascribe divine attributes to Jesus, such as freedom from original sin, that we do not ascribe to mere men, that therefore we implicitly deny the true humanity of Christ.

What I'm looking for from you is an aye or nay as to whether I've understood your objection.

-Turretinfa

Turretinfan said...

MC's answer is (surprisingly) NO to (A), and YES to (B).

According to MC we create a hybrid.

I guess I have only one question left for MC on this topic:

Is your objection:

a) To any/every doctrine of original sin, or
b) Only to the doctrine of original sin held by Calvinists?
c) Not to very doctrine of original sin, but not just to the Calvinists' position.

-Turretinfan

Turretinfan said...

MC has responded and indicated that the answer is (a).
MC write:
"All veiws of original sin are wrong and unscriptual I don't care who holds them. Now are you going to deal with the subject or are you going to continue to deflect?"

A) I'm not interested in debating original sin in this thread;

B) Since your position (that we teach that Jesus was some kind of hybrid) is plainly contrary to our actual doctrine, I'm not sure what the point of arguing with you about that would be.

-Turretinfan

Turretinfan said...

And, MC, I am now aware that your objection here fundamentally is an objection to the doctrine of the trinity, which is not a doctrine open to debate on this blog at this time.

-Turretinfan

Turretinfan said...

MC,

Is it your position that God is able to sin?

Is it your position that Jesus is God?

Is it your position that Jesus is able to Sin?

Is it your position that Jesus was God before Jesus was man?

Is it your position that there are many real gods, but that Jesus is the "Only Supreme God"?

Do you believe that Jesus is the same person as his Father?

Was Jesus God when he was in the virgin Mary's womb?

If you answer those questions, with a yes/no, I will gladly indicate your answers here.

I think your answers will resolve the alleged problems that you have with the Reformed Doctrine of Christ.

-Turretinfan

Turretinfan said...

MC has responded:

TF:
Is it your position that God is able to sin?

MLC:
It is impossible for God to sin

TF:
Is it your position that Jesus is God?

MLC:
Yes [remainder omitted]

TF:
Is it your position that Jesus is able to Sin?

MLC:
Yes,. it is my position Jesus was able to sin as A REAL MAN [remainder omitted]

[I answer: Perhaps you misunderstood my question. Is Jesus NOW able to sin?]

TF:
Is it your position that Jesus was God before Jesus was man?

MLC:No, [remainder omitted]

TF:
Is it your position that there are many real gods, but that Jesus is the "Only Supreme God"?

MLC:
Jesus is the Only supreme God

[I ask again, what should we infer from your silence about whether there are many real gods or not? I'm tempted to infer that the answer is yes, but I'd rather let you answer the question yes or no for yourself.]

TF:
Do you believe that Jesus is the same person as his Father?

MLC: [Detailed answer omitted. In essence, I think MLC objected to the form of the question, and sought to clarify his position. That seems fairly reasonable, so I'll rephrase the question.]

[I answer: Could you answer the alternate question, "Was God a person before the Virgin Mary was born?" and "Did Jesus exist as a real human being before the Virgin Mary was born?"]

TF:
Was Jesus God when he was in the virgin Mary's womb?

MLC: No, but he still had the promise and was made so, [remainder omitted]

[I answer: Was Jesus God before the baptism by John the Baptist?]

-Turretinfan

Turretinfan said...

MC has commented:
"Your questions will not be answered Like this," [remainder omitted]

That's completely up to you, and I'll draw my own conclusions.

-Turretinfan

Turretinfan said...

MC has asserted that I am "lying" (apparently about his answers.

I assume that the basis of this charge is simply that I'm not letting MC put on a case for his position, instead I'm asking him yes-or-no questions and posting his yes-or-no answers.

If I have misreprented a "yes" as a "no" or vice versa, I will gladly post a retraction/clarification. If MC is just complaining that I won't post his detailed explanation, then he shouldn't call it "lying," even in private posts to me.

-Turretinfan

Turretinfan said...

I'm not sure MC gets it, because he gives "I never gave yes or no answers to all of your questions"

Let me be clear,

a) Yes, MC did not simply answer all the questions yes-or-no though that was the looked-for answer; and
b) Indeed, his failure to do so, is what prompted some of the second round of questions, as well as the truncation of his responses.

MC if you are claiming you answered "NO" where I say you answered "YES" then be specific and I'll check my records and post a retraction if appropriate, and a clarification if appropriate.

Otherwise, quit submitting comments that falsely assert that I was lying.

-Turretinfan

Turretinfan said...

MC: "it has nothing to do with you giving a yes where i said no but has everything to do with you not giving a proper answer that I gave to your question those questions cannot be answered with yes or no answers"

I answer:

That's not lying, but ok - please let me know which of the questions I asked that cannot be answered with a "yes" or "no" and I'll post either a retraction (if I fabricated a "yes" or "no" that you did not make) or clarification that your "yes" or "no" requires qualification.

-Turretinfan

Turretinfan said...

MC identified: Do you believe that Jesus is the same person as his Father?

And stated that this question cannot be answered with a yes or no answer.

I was trying to say that above, when I wrote: "Detailed answer omitted. In essence, I think MLC objected to the form of the question, and sought to clarify his position. That seems fairly reasonable, so I'll rephrase the question."

I'm sorry I was unclear.

Is there any other place where I can clarify that your response was that the question cannot be answered "yes or no"?

-Turretinfan

Turretinfan said...

MC wrote:
TF wrote:
"MC identified: Do you believe that Jesus is the same person as his Father?

And stated that this question cannot be answered with a yes or no answer".


You already Know my answer but will not allow me to post it because it contradicts the doctrine of the trinity and contradicts what you folks say we teach on the subject that Jesus is somehow his own daddy which is not the truth.


I answer:
Yes, I don't allow people to contradict the doctrine of the Trinity on this blog, and I don't allow debate on that topic, or promotion of anti-Trinitarian doctrines here. I had been willing to let you answer questions about your views, but you have chosen not to do so, falsely accusing me of deceit, which charges you were unable to substantiate.

Your denial of the Trinity is itself ridiculous enough to discredit you to 90% of the people reading: I have no need to misrepresent your views, whether or not your views are that Jesus is the same person as the Father.

You crumble under questioning and start making false accusations of deceit on the part of your questioner.


-Turretinfan

Turretinfan said...

MC also wrote: I challenge you to debate the topic of Jesus being a real man versus ...

I answer:

I affirm that Jesus was a real man, so I'm not going to take a position in negation of that.

I'm also not going to debate the doctrine of the hypostatic union with you.

-Turretinfan

mlculwell said...

I don't really care what those 90% think because those 90% are just as wrong about the Godhead as you are!

mlculwell said...

You do not affirm jesus was a real man you only make a false claim to hide behind.If I were you I would continue that false calim also because you cannot maintain your false veiw of the trinity without it as a somewhat so called orthadox doctrine.

Turretinfan said...

MC,
I published your latest comment as an example of how not to comment.
Your comment proves that you either:

a) did not read the post; or
b) do not have the ability to understand the post.

Either way, you're better off not making such absurd false accusations.

-Turretinfan

Turretinfan said...

MC:
Do you suppose that you have an advocate with the Father, namely Jesus Christ?

I do.

In Him I trust.

-Turretinfan

P.S. This is not an invitation to you to post more anti-Trinitarian comments, but an invitation to you to think about your need for a Savior.