Thursday, January 29, 2009

Incarnation

This morning I was reading a little bit of church history with 8th grade Mary, our youngest and last being home-schooled. We were covering a section on Irenaeus and were reminded of an important (and I think correct) point he made: Even if the fall into sin had not occurred, the Son of God still would have become man. The incarnation was the intended goal all along. It wasn’t something God was somehow forced to do in order to save us. Rather this intimate union and communion of God and man in Christ was the plan from the beginning. Clearly the incarnation is a key aspect of our redemption; the Son of God took on our flesh and blood in order to die in the flesh and shed his blood as the atoning sacrifice for our sins. But it’s not as if, had the fall never occurred, God would have remained separate from us and not joined our nature to His own. After all, Adam and Eve were created in the image of God, and the image of the invisible God is Christ (Colossians 1:15). The God who is love created us that He might give Himself to us completely. Sharing fully in our human life, His desire is that we share ever more and more fully in His divine life. That will continue to be the case in the new creation, too, long after we leave this old sin-cursed world behind.

2 comments:

Nathan Fischer said...

Thank you for your thoughts, Pastor. I have wondered about this aspect of the incarnation myself. I also wonder, at times, what the relationship between the Tree of Life and the Tree of Knowledge is to Christ and His incarnation, or if there is one (I know that we say that Christ on the cross is our Tree of Life, but I mean beyond even that aspect). I haven't really figured that out, yet, but your post reminded me of it, again. Have any thoughts in that regard?

Pastor Koch said...

Hmm, I'm not sure I fully understand where you're going with your question. Perhaps we can pursue this further via email and you can go into a little more detail. Btw, I believe that Dr. Scaer deals with this understanding of the incarnation in a Christmas or Post-Christmas sermon of his published in the CCA volumes "In Christ." Perhaps he also addresses the things you're asking about as well with regard to the trees in the garden.