The Hypostatic Union

Ask the average person on the street about the hypostatic union and you’ll be greeted with a blank stare. Is it a labor union maybe and you have to pay dues? Perhaps it’s a group of hypostatic workers who unionized for better pay and benefits like the AFL-CIO! If you ask a theologian about the hypostatic union you’ll get an earful! Trinitarian scholars claim that Jesus had two natures! They theorize that Jesus was God and Man joined into one body by way of a mythical hypostatic union.  Although he had a human nature it was “impersonal” so He wasn’t really a genuine human being at all! He was “man but not a man”. This theory claims God inhabited a vacant human body so He was not actually one of us. These are novel intellectual gymnastics but scripture does not indulge in this kind of thinking. Not for one minute, not for one second, never.

Jesus Christ is One of Us

Jesus said, “I am a man who has told you the truth I heard from God but now you want to kill me. Abraham wouldn’t have done that.” (John 8:40) The Apostle Peter said Jesus was “a man attested by God to you by miracles wonders and signs  which God did through Him in your midst” (Acts 2:22)  Moses prophecied about Jesus declaring “a prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto thee, from the midst of thee, of your brethren, like unto me”. Now Moses was a great man indeed but he was still a man and Moses claimed this prophet would be like him. (Deureronomy 18:15) These are straightforward and understandable Bible verses. Do you really think we have to believe in a hypostatic union or an impersonal human nature to make sense of them?  We don’t think so either.

Jesus Said “I Am a Man”

Jesus never claimed to be God Himself but He did claim to be the Christ. He told us plainly that he was a man, a human being like us. “I am a man who has told you the truth!” He was a man who came in His Father’s name, did the works His Father showed Him and spoke the words His Father put in His mouth. (John 14:24) Jesus was a perfect man and His courage, compassion and sacrifice on Calvary were all intensely personal.  We declare that anti-scriptural notions like the “hypostatic union” and Jesus’ so-called “impersonal human nature” detract from the beauty and glory of His life.

Copyright 2022 by Bob Shutes

PS: This is what most Christians believed in the first three centuries of the Christian faith… and what many believers are re-discovering in our times. These are wonderful and ancient beliefs and if you get the chance please share them. God Bless.

How Old is Jesus?

The doctrine of the trinity alleges that Jesus existed before He was born and that Jesus Christ is co-eternal with the Father. This notion is generally described as the pre-existence of Christ and without it the trinity falls apart.

Did Jesus Actually Exist Before He Was Born?

Advocates for the trinity declare that Jesus had a dual nature held together by virtrue of a hypostatic union and that only the human part of Christ was born in Bethlehem.  This means that while the humanity part of Jesus was being born His eternal and unborn part was waiting in the wings to occupy its new home in a human body.  This is a strange and unbiblical doctrine to be sure! We wonder if it means Jesus wasn’t really and truly born in Bethlehem after all. Did Jesus actually exist before He was born?

The Peculiar Idea of Eternal Begetting

There is talk in the creeds of another novel and unbiblical idea called “eternal begetting”. This teaching is just one of many desperate attempts that try to support the whole shaky house of cards we call the doctrine of the trinity.  Along with being totally unintelligible, wouldn’t the peculiar idea of eternal begetting have put a lot of strain on Mary? Is there any truth to the idea that Jesus existed from eternity long before He was born?  No doubt there is some language in the New Testament that is confusing but fortunately there are other Biblical teachings that help clarify things. Let’s take a closer look.

What is Prophetic Prolepsis?

This might be a term you’ve never even heard but prophetic prolepsis is an academic way of saying that God “calleth the things that are not as though they are.” (Romans 4:17) You can write it in your book that once God wills and determines something it is as good as done. “Yea, I have spoken it, I will also bring it to pass. I have purposed it, I will also do it.” (Isaiah 43:13) God can speak of things He has planned as though they have already happened because they are absolutely certain to take place. This is why He can speak of things that have yet to occur as though they have existed from all eternity. The things that God plans already exist in His sovereign will and that is the ultimate and eternal reality!  “He calleth the things that are not as though they are.”

How Old is Jesus Christ?

God’s eternal plan was that He would have a Son who would ultimately redeem mankind and bring us to our high destiny. This plan was from eternity but Jesus’ actual life didn’t begin until He was conceived and then born in Bethlehem. How old is Jesus Christ? “His goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting” (Micah 5:2) The promise of Jesus Christ was in the mind of God “from everlasting” but Jesus’ actual appearing didn’t come to pass until He was born in Bethlehem. This is a biblical way to understand scriptures that seem to indicate Jesus existed from eternity. It’s helpful to read your Bible with the idea in mind that the things God declares in His Word already exist in His plan for the ages even though the fulfillment of those things may still be in the future.

PS: This isn’t a hard idea to understand but it is important. If what we have shared here  makes sense to you please share this post with a friend. Thanks and God bless.

Copyright 2022 by Bob Shutes

The LORD Said Unto My Lord…

Has Psalm 110 Been Hacked?

Psalm 110 is a familiar but poorly understood scripture about the coming Messiah, and  Trinitarian commentators have had a field day with its meaning. Jesus Himself quoted it to confound and silence His opponents. (Luke 20:42-44)  Here’s how it reads in our English Bibles, “The LORD said unto my Lord, sit thou at my right hand until I make your enemies your footstool.”  (Psalm 110) In Hebrew it reads “YHWH said to Adawn…”  translated “Adonai said to my Adoni….”  Our English translations replace YHWH and Adonai with “LORD” and replace Adawn and Adoni with “Lord”. This might have pleased them but it doesn’t really give the reader a good idea of what is going on in this verse. We wonder, has Psalm 110 been hacked?  Let’s take a minute and sort it out.

Adonai is Used Exclusively for God the Father

The conversation in Psalm 110 is between two distinct beings. One Being is God the Father and the other is His Christ. One Being is divine and the other is human. There is no question or debate that YHWH applies exclusively to God the Father. Likewise Adonai is used exclusively for God the Father. So far so good.

Adoni is Used for Human Superiors

There is another word, however, that describes human lords and superiors. It is the word Adoni and it is never used to describe God Himself. Understanding the distinction between Adonai and Adoni will help you make good Biblical sense out of the phrase “The LORD said to my Lord”. This is not complicated but it is important! The man Jesus Christ is our Adoni but He is not Adonai. He is our Lord but He is not LORD. What emerges from this is a clear understanding that Jesus Christ, the Son of God is a man. Our Savior came in the flesh and He is one of us. Jesus is God’s Anointed One and God’s only begotten Son, the Christ. He is our Brother and Master and Lord but He is not God.

Psalm 110 Reveals the Mystery of God and Christ

Jesus never claimed to be God but He did claim to be the Christ. Psalm 110 reveals the Mystery of God and Christ.  “For us there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus.” (I Timothy 2:5) We don’t have to resort to the tortured logic of trinitarian philosophy to make sense of this!  We honor and exalt Jesus as God’s unique agent on our behalf and for what He has done for us. “For God has made him both Lord and Christ”. (Acts 2:36) “For us there is only one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we are for him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ…” (I Cor 8:6) Well there you have it. Psalm 110 sheds light on the mystery of God and Christ, Jesus is not God, Jesus is Lord!

PS:  God surely intended for us understand his Word. This seems at odds with the work of many theologians and translators but we are convinced God will eventually have His way! If this post has helped you see things more clearly please share it with a few friends. God Bless.

Copyright 2022 by Bob Shutes

The Man Christ Jesus

If Jesus Isn’t God….

“If Jesus isn’t God…. is He just a man?” The Trinitarian view of God insists that Jesus is a divine “person” who has existed from all eternity. We think this idea rules out any chance of Him being truly human like the rest of us. (I haven’t existed from eternity and none of my friends have either). We are saying that “There is one God and one mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus.” (I Timothy 2:5-6) Our mortal lives begin at birth and end at death. If Jesus was truly one of us He should have followed the same pattern… and He did! His  mortal life began with His birth in Bethlehem and ended when He was crucified on Calvary. Jesus then created a gloriously new pattern of life and death when He rose from the dead. Now He invites us to share in His immortality!

Jesus Christ is Unique Among Men

Skeptics dismiss Christian belief by saying, “The Bible is just a book filled with myths and stories that aren’t really true.”  Most Christians believe that although the Bible is indeed a book it is much more than “just a  book”. Calling the Bible “just a book” implies that the Bible is simply one book among many and no different than all the rest. We affirm that the Bible is indeed a book, but not just a book! It is a unique book, in a class by itself and distinct from all others… and we can say the very same thing about our Savior. Jesus Christ is unique among men. He is in a class by Himself; sinless, perfect and distinct from all others… but he is still thoroughly and completely a man. He was most definitely one of us but He is not just a man”.

Jesus is the Christ of God, the Anointed One

Jesus Christ is the miraculously begotten Son of God. The Father called Him “My Beloved Son”. He is the Lamb of God and the Light of the World.  No other man “ever spake like this man!” Who else has raised the dead, walked on water and stilled a tempest with a spoken word? Jesus is the Bread of Life and He alone is the Way, the Truth and the Life. We know Him as the Good Shepherd, our High Priest and the Great Physician. Jesus Christ is our Savior, Kinsman Redeemer and Judge and yes… He was a man, a perfect man to be sure! But fortunately for us He was not “just a man”. Jesus is the Christ of God, the Anointed One, the Messiah and our Brother.

Copyright 2022 by Bob Shutes