The Long And The Short Episode 12 – The Lord Will Provide

The Long And The Short Episode 12 – The Lord Will Provide
In this episode of The Long And The Short Of It, Pastor Kevin Inman and Brad Wilson discuss the Sunday evening Bible study of Genesis 22 at Grace Point at Eagle Heights Church in Orange, TX. This is an amazingly profound & prophetic passage of Scripture that is about a Father giving His only Son whom He loves. This is the first time the word “love” is mentioned in the Bible and it happens to concern a Father giving His Son! Reminds us of John 3:16! Tune in and see what we mean. Join us each Sunday night at 6:00pm at GPEHchurch.com.
 

The Long And The Short Episode 12 – The Lord Will Provide



The Incarnation: Did Jesus Give Up His Divine Attributes?

The Incarnation…

Did Jesus Give Up His Divine Attributes?

A casual reading of Philippians 2:6-8 may lead the reader to assume that Jesus gave up His divine attributes in the Incarnation. This is a complete misunderstanding. Upon closer examination we see that Jesus did not give up any of His divine attributes when He, the Word, “became flesh”. What then did Paul mean when he writes that Christ, “emptied Himself” or “made Himself nothing”?

First, Christ veiled the glory that was His from all eternity as God. This was necessary in order for Him to take the appearance of a man. Christ never surrendered His glory. Remember the transfiguration? On the Mount of Transfiguration the Glory of the Lord Jesus was on full, magnificent display (Matthew 17). Jesus had to veil His glory in order to dwell among mortal humanity (see Isaiah 6:5; John 12:41; revelation 1:17).

Second, Christ “emptied Himself”, or “made Himself nothing”, by voluntarily laying aside some of His divine attributes. Jesus willingly refrained from exercising His rightful, divine prerogatives. His chose to do this in order that He might accomplish His objectives. It is important to understand that Jesus could never have actually surrendered any of His attributes or else He would have ceased to be God. Can God cease to be God? Of course not! What we find in the Scripture is the voluntary laying aside of certain attributes during His tabernacle with us. A prime example of this can be seen in Matthew 24:36. Here, we see that Jesus, in His humanity, temporarily laid aside His omniscience. As Jesus dwelt with us in the Incarnation, He willingly set aside the knowledge of His second coming. It would be illogical to believe that Jesus, being God of very God, does not know have this knowledge.

Third, we see that Christ “emptied Himself”, or “made Himself nothing” by taking on the appearance of a man and the very nature of a bond-servant. Christ was thus truly human. This humanity then would have been subject to temptation, distress, weakness, pain, sorrow, and limitation. It is amazing to think that Jesus “made Himself nothing” as reported in Philippians 2:7. The greek word for this is “kenosis”. Kenosis is the doctrine of Christ’s self-emptying in His incarnation. MacArthur states, “This was a self-renunciation, not an emptying Himself of deity nor an exchange of deity for humanity.” 

He continues, “Jesus did, however, renounce or set aside His privileges in several areas: 

1) heavenly glory—while on earth He gave up the glory of a face-to-face relationship with God and the continuous outward display and personal enjoyment of that glory (cf. Jn 17:5); 

2) independent authority—during His incarnation Christ completely submitted Himself to the will of His Father (cf. Mt 26:39; Jn 5:30; Heb 5:8); 

3) divine prerogatives—He set aside the voluntary display of His divine attributes and submitted Himself to the Spirit’s direction (cf. Mt 24:36; Jn 1:45–49); 

4) eternal riches—while on earth Christ was poor and owned very little (cf. 2Co 8:9); and 

5) a favorable relationship with God—He felt the Father’s wrath for human sin while on the cross (cf. Mt 27:46;
2Co 5:21).1
 
What grace! From heaven to earth, from glory to shame, from Master to servant, from life to death, “even the death of the cross!”2 In the Old Testament Age, Christ had visited earth on occasion for some special ministry (Gen. 18 is a case in point), but these visits were temporary. When Christ was born at Bethlehem, He entered into a permanent union with humanity from which there could be no escape. He willingly humbled Himself that He might lift us up!

 

 

  1. J MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (2006). The MacArthur study Bible: New American Standard Bible. (Php 2:7). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.
  2. Wiersbe, W. W. (1996). The Bible exposition commentary (Vol. 2, p. 75). Wheaton, IL: Victor Books.


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