Ok, so the last post put forward church life as an analogy of trinitarian life. More specifically:
‘Differently gifted members of one priesthood’ is analagous to ‘Differently gifted Persons in one Godhead.’
Once this is seen, then we can all breathe a sigh of relief and just let Jesus be Jesus.
What do I mean by that? Well let me ask a few questions. When you read the Gospels, do you ever wonder:
Why doesn’t Jesus just say ‘I am God’? Why all this ‘I am sent…’ stuff?
Why does Jesus keep saying things like: ‘I can do nothing by myself’? (e.g John 5:19,30)
How come Jesus sleeps?
How come Jesus doesn’t know when He’s returning?
Do we get worried when we see that Jesus is ‘differently gifted‘ to the One He calls Father??
Well we needn’t be. It is a revelation of His divine nature (and not a concealment) that we see in Jesus such dependence on the Father. When He says ‘I am sent’ it reveals His divine nature as the eternal Son of the Father. When He says ‘I can do nothing’ it reveals His divine nature as the eternal Servant of the LORD. When He sleeps it reveals His divine nature as One dependent upon the ever-wakeful Father. When He says He doesn’t know when He’s returning He reveals His divine nature as One sent from God. He waits on the Father’s command and does not initiate His first or second coming.
He really can’t do anything by Himself. He really does sleep (He really does die even!) He really doesn’t know when He’s returning. But for all that He is no less divine. For He belongs to the other Members and in union with their ‘giftings’ He is a full participant in the communion that is God.
We don’t need to assign these differences in Jesus to some ‘human nature’ locked off from a special sphere of uncorrupted deity. Jesus’ deity is not insulated from these differences, it includes them. It is the human Jesus who says ‘If you’ve seen me you’ve seen the Father.’ It is the human Jesus who says ‘Son, your sins are forgiven.’ In His differences, even in His complete humanity, He is the living God. So let’s let Him be who He is in the Gospels. Let’s not fit Him into some pre-conceived notions of divinity. Let’s let Jesus be Jesus.