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Re-claiming the Incarnation Part 2 06-29-2017

Many broadminded theologians today reflect the words of Don Cupitt: “The critical historian no longer sees both natures displayed in Jesus’ life. He sees a purely human Jesus, a first-century man of God in the Jewish tradition.”[1] This new age Jesus becomes a pattern for human life, but is no longer the incarnation.

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Most broadminded theologians miss Thomas Merton’s sentiment in The Seven Storey Mountain,
Jesus Christ was not simply a man, a good man, a great man, the greatest prophet, a wounded healer, a saint: He was something that made all such trivial words pale into irrelevance. He was God. But nevertheless He was not merely a spirit without a true body, God hiding under a visionary body: He was also truly a man.[2]

Contemporary theologians talk of Jesus as “God embodied in a human life.”[3] But, in Jesus God wasn’t just embodied in a human life like other prophets. Jesus was utterly unique: God’s human incarnation. This affirmation of generations of witnesses differentiates Christianity from all other world religions. Some claim “His life incarnates the character of God.”[4] But, “Jesus incarnates the character of God” evades the bold affirmation of the ages: God incarnate; “God in human form” (Philippians 2:8, Colossians 2:9).

“The Word (God) became flesh (human)” (John 1:14). This is the difference between God’s human incarnation and God’s prophets and prophetesses. In Jesus God didn’t dwell within a human like Moses, Elijah, and Deborah. God became human. This is the unique legacy of the Christian testament.

[1] Goulder, Incarnation and Myth, 43.

[2] Merton, The Seven Storey Mountain, 209.

[3] Borg, The Heart of Christianity, 88.

[4] Borg, The Heart of Christianity, 88.
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The Way of the Wisdom Jesus: Going Beyond the Mind to the Heart of His Teaching – If you put aside what you think you know about Jesus and approach the Gospels as though for the first time, something remarkable happens: Jesus emerges as a teacher of the transformation of consciousness. In this online course, Episcopal priest, teacher, and retreat and conference leader Cynthia Bourgeault serves as a masterful guide to Jesus’s vision and to the traditional contemplative practices you can use to experience the heart of his teaching for yourself.  Based upon her book the Wisdom Jesus.

Our friends at Contemplative Light are offering  Contemplative Practices. This  course examines in-depth traditional practices of the Christian mystics, including:  The Examen, Centering Prayer, Lectio Divina, The Jesus Prayer and Christian Meditation.

Prayer is a core Christian practice, but for many, this means “saying prayers” or asking God for various favors. In this course, we will review a variety of methods of prayer that have been used for centuries in Christianity. Whether you’re a beginner who is just learning how to pray, or a more mature Christian who has been at it awhile, this course will offer specific guidance, encouragement and support for practicing several time-tested methods of prayer.  Enjoy a review of this course by Rich.

Enjoy Rich’s post: Does God Wake You Up At 3 in the Morning?

Enjoy Rich’s review of Eyes of the Heart: Photography as a Christian Contemplative Practice – Book Review

BE STILL AND LISTEN: Experience the Presence of God in Your Life

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Number of pages: 160
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Healing The Divide: Recovering Christianity’s Mystic Roots

ISBN: 978-1-62032-365-6
Dimensions: 6 x 9
Number of pages: 316
Publication Date: March 29, 2013

Where to Buy

Healing The Divide books are available at
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