I. The Several Stages of Christ’s Humiliation and Exaltation (p. 305 et. seq.)
1. Christ’s humiliation includes:
a. All events of His earthly life.
b. From His conception to His burial.
2. Does not include His descent into hell.
3. Designates the entire period of His humiliation as “the days of His flesh” (Gk.: tais hemerais tes sarkos autou/the days of the flesh of Him.)
a. He abstained from appearing in the form of God.
b. He entered into equality with men.
c. He did not refrain from suffering and dying on the Cross.
d. All in the interest of His office, i.e. rendering the vicarious satisfaction.
B. Christ’s Conception and Nativity (p. 306 et. seq.)
1. Incarnation itself not a part of the humiliation.
2. Humiliation connected with the Incarnation.
a. Consists in the mode, or manner, of the Incarnation.
b. He did not become man.
(1) By uniting with Himself a fully developed human nature,
(2) By an immediate creative act, as, e.g. Adam.
c. He took upon Himself human lowliness and weakness.
d. His conception and birth constitute a lowly mode of becoming man.
3. His office as Redeemer.
a. Early in His life He had to begin His redemptive work as our Savior.
b. Had to share our common human development.
4. Must not invent extra-Biblical miracles re: His conception and birth.
a. e.g. that all bodily members were fully developed from the beginning.
b. Are a menace to faith.
5. Must adhere to the Scripture doctrine.
a. Conceived through operation of the Holy Spirit.
b. Born of a virgin, without destroying Her virginity.
c. Question of birth “with closed womb” or “an opened womb” left open, recognizing possibility due to cm. of attributes and His illocal mode of subsistence.
6. Question of Mary later having other children.
a. Early church, plus Luther and others, answers in the negative.
b. Some recent theologians answer in the affirmative.
c. Pieper prefers “not to spend too much time on it.” (p.309)
C. Christ’s Education, Growth in Wisdom. And Visible Earthly Life (p. 309 et. seq.)
1. No schooling necessary in sense that He had evil propensities that had to be curbed.
2. From as a child: Heb 7:26.
3. When His parents disagreed with Him, He was right (Lk 2:48,49)
4. He did actually learn, study, and increase in wisdom.
a. So far as His human nature was concerned (Lk 2:52).
b. In state of humiliation, the divine knowledge remained quiescent to extent His office required.
c. This quiescence can not be rationally understood.
5. His appearance in visible form.
a. It itself not a humiliation.
b. He will appear visibly on Judgment Day.
(1) Mt 25:31-33.
(2) 2Th 1:7b.
(3) 1Pe 4:13.
c. Is humiliation in that:
(1) He remained the eternal, essential Son of God.
(2) Mt 16:16,17.
(3) Jn 8:58.
(4) But did not appear among men as the God-Man.
(5) But appeared as an ordinary human being.
(6) And, He permitted men to treat Him as such.
D. Christ’s Suffering, Death, and Burial (p. 310, et. seq.)
1. His suffering extends through the entire state of His humiliation (His whole earthly life is a “Passion story”).
2. Thursday and Friday of the Passion Week.
a. Has been called the Great Passion.
b. Part was His being forsaken by God: Mt 27:46.
(1) Must understand and accept His substitution for men.
(2) He was no sinner.
(3) The transfer of our sin to Him was a purely juridical divine act.
(4) 2Co 5:21.
(5) This divine juridical act of God penetrated to His very heart and conscience.
(6) He felt the sin and guilt of all men.
(7) Ps 69:5 (He speaks of His own sin and guilt)
(8) With our sin and guilt, He also felt God’s wrath.
3. Question has arisen as to whether we may speak of His having endured the punishment or torments of hell.
a. Romans and some “timid” Lutherans disapprove statement.
b. But statement is Scriptural.
c. Torment of hell is the condition of being rejected from the presence of God, i.e. in which they are forsaken of God.
d. Mt 8:12; 25:41.
e. 2Th 1:9.
f. Was but temporarily forsaken of God.
(1) Explained by fact He is the divine Son of God.
(2) This transient condition was equivalent to all sinners’ being eternally forsaken of God.
(3) 1Pe 1:18,19.
(4) His deep spiritual suffering: Is 53:11.
(5) To be forsaken of God is much worse than is death.
4. It would be wholly improper to speak of despair on His part.
a. Despair is iniquity.
b. Would conflict with His sinlessness.
c. Christ, while forsaken of God, continued to trust in God.
(1) Ps 22:1; 19-25.
(2) Lk 23:46.
(3) He still cried out “My God, my God!” (Mt 27:46)
d. While forsaken, the Father’s declaration still was true:
(1) Mt 3:17.
(2) Jn 10:17.
5. His death was a true death, the separation of body and soul.
a. All the Evangelists record this:
(1) Mt 27:50.
(2) Mk 15:37.
(3) Lk 23:46.
(4) Jn 19:30.
b. Since His death is the death of the Son of God, not merely the departed soul, but also the entombed body remained in personal union with the Son of God, the possibility of His death passes man’s understanding.
c. But, the fact of His death must be believed.
d. He was man also in death: 1Ti 2:5,6.
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