When we put our minds to the idea of Jesus being one hundred percent God and simultaneously one hundred percent man, we naturally feel overwhelmed. But the Incarnation is compelling, beautiful, biblically sensible, and necessary. Why? Well, five reasons.
- Jesus reveals God in all his glory (John 1:14b, 14:7) – if less than God he cannot truly reveal God and we are still in a mystery as to what God is like. We become agnostic. We are left to grapple in the dark rather than magnify his glory. Without Jesus, we have no true knowledge of God.
- Jesus shows us how to be godly – (John 15:12-14, Hebrews 12:1b-3) – he lives the truly human life honouring God with every footstep and word. Demonstrating what it is to life for God and love God despite the circumstance of life.
- Jesus sympathises with our weakness (Hebrews 4:14-16) – strength and grace to push on when we fail. God knows we are not perfect and we do not need to fear him or his fury or his perfection for Jesus understands what our life is like and yet strengthens us to live it well. It is such a sad thing when religions breed fear of God.
- Jesus mediates with the Father – (Hebrews 7:23-25) being less than God he cannot dwell with God and take to God the human concerns, thus we are left on our own pleadings. Pleading with a God who is absent.
- Atones for our sin (Hebrews 2:17) – being less than God and imperfect he can no longer reconcile us to God but must atone for his own sin. If not God incarnate he is irrelevant to our relationship with God. If only God and not man, then he cannot take the sins of man in his own body and bear them away to death even death on a cross. Atonement for human sin would be meaningless. The incarnation of Jesus does not save by itself, but it is an essential link in God’s plan of redemption. The Word became flesh to save us from our sin and to free us to marvel at and enjoy the unique union of divinity and humanity in his one spectacular person.
Therefore, Do not be timid, or intimidated concerning the combination of Godness & humanness of Christ – without it there would be NO Christmas, NO real joy, NO peace with God, much less peace among men – NO Good News, NO Good Will toward Men.
The incarnation displays the greatness of God. Our God is the eternal God who was born in a stable, not a distant, withdrawn God; our God is a humble, giving God, not a selfish, grabbing God; our God is a purposeful, planning God, not a random, reactionary God; our God is a God who is far above us and whose ways are not our ways, not a God we can put in a box and control; and our God is a God who redeems us by his blood, not a God who leaves us in our sin. Our God is great indeed!
The incarnation may in the end be utterly impossible to understand fully. But that’s okay. In the end, the incarnation is not for analysis but it allows worship.