Jesus question


#21

Contarini:

Lo and behold–you’re a Thomist! Excellent points.

I’d just like to add, from somewhere in the CCC, that the two natures of Christ was not a schizophrenic reality…it is first and foremost a mystery, but what we can safely say is that the two natures were not in contention of each other. It was/is in perfect harmony. The human nature of Christ was not compromised by the divine nature.

in XT.


#22

Ok, good answer. In case you hadn’t figured out where I was heading, I was looking at Jesus losing his temper while cleaning out the sellers at the temple.


#23

Hi Montie, lets look at the text behind the question of can Jesus sin.

James 1

12Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.

13When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; 14but each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. 15Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.

16Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers. 17Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. 18He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created.

Looking at verse 13-14, when, how is men tempted to sin? Does God have a sin nature? evil desire? Could Jesus as a man have desires? Did Jesus have a sin nature? In Matthew 4, Jesus was tempted by satan, external to himself.

Hebrews 4:15
For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.

  1. to try, make trial of, test: for the purpose of ascertaining his quantity, or what he thinks, or how he will behave himself

a) in a good sense

b) in a bad sense, to test one maliciously, craftily to put to the proof his feelings or judgments

c) to try or test one’s faith, virtue, character, by enticement to sin

  1. to solicit to sin, to tempt

a) of the temptations of the devil

blueletterbible.org/tmp_dir/words/3/1135723869-7209.html


#24

God cannot be tempted (James 1:13).
God can be tempted (or there would be no reason for us to be warned against tempting God – Deuteronomy 6:16).
If God cannot be tempted (see 1 above), and Jesus is God, then does that mean he cannot be tempted? (James 1:13)
But Jesus was tempted (Hebrews 4:15).
God tempts no one (James 1:13).
God tempted someone (David, to number Israel – 2 Samuel 24:1).

How are these biblical statements reconciled, both within scripture and consistent with God’s character?

The answers to these statements can be categorized in two major ways: vocabulary (what words were used in the original, and what meanings those words have), and context (how the words were used in each passage).

Vocabulary

Temptation has many synonyms (equivalent words) in English. It can mean (among other things) test, proof, experiment, trial, and enticement. The main Greek (New Testament language) words for temptation are formed from peiraz and dokimaz , both words of which also occur in the Greek translation of the Old Testament called the Septuagint. The main Hebrew words are n sƒh, s rap, and b han, and one word which relates primarily to the genuineness of coins, sig. Comparing the Septuagint equivalents to the original Hebrew helps us understand the overall biblical use of the terms.

[Those who wish more information on the Greek or Hebrew should see The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology (Vol. 3), Colin Brown, ed., Zondervan, 1978, pp. 798-810; or The Expository Dictionary of Bible Words, Lawrence O. Richards, Zondervan, 1985, pp. 593-594.]

Both peiraz and dokimaz can mean test or proof. In addition, peiraz includes the ideas of temptation or enticement (to sin) and of a trial. Dokimaz also carries the connotation of approval or genuineness.

From this vocabulary study, we see that “temptation” can mean test, proof, or to establish genuineness; not only “enticement to sin.”

Context

Armed with our vocabulary study, we can look at the context of each of our six statements.

God Cannot Be Tempted

James 1:13 says, “Let no one say when he is tempted, ‘I am being tempted by God’; for God cannot be tempted by evil, and He Himself does not tempt anyone.” Looking at the context, we see that the statement is not merely “God cannot be tempted,” but “God cannot be tempted by evil.” In other words, God cannot be enticed to sin (Greek apeir st s). James 1:13 affirms that God cannot sin, but is completely holy and good.

God Can Be Tempted

When Deuteronomy 6:16 warns us against “tempting God,” the context refers on the one hand to testing the Israelites’ faithfulness and, on the other hand, to testing God’s righteous judgment. Paraphrased, the passage means, “Don’t test God’s righteous judgment by worship-ping idols unless you are willing to be wiped off the face of the earth” (v. 15).

The reconciliation of the two statements? God cannot be enticed to sin; he is holy and good. God’s consistent, holy, good reaction to idolatry is righteous judgment. One should not “test” God’s character by sinning, since God will “pass the test” of righteousness and punish the sinner (see also Jeremiah 18:7-10).

**
Can Jesus Be God and Be Tempted?

Jesus is God and so he cannot be tempted in the sense that he cannot be enticed to sin, but he can be tempted in the sense that he can be tested, even with the evil lures of Satan (Matthew 4), and found to be true to his character. This is the context of Hebrews 4:15, which says, "For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who has been tempted (peiraz ) in all things as we are, yet without sin."
Jesus was tested by Satan’s enticements concerning his obedience to the Father and his commitment to his messianic mission, yet he did not succumb to the temptation. (A related issue concerns the dynamics between Christ’s human and divine natures, under the subjection of his one divine person. See The Impeccable Christ by W. E. Best, Zondervan, 1971).
**

Does God Tempt People?

Summary

There are various meanings for the word temptation. Usually it means either an enticement to sin or a test or trial. God never entices anyone to sin, but uses testing to reveal his justice and challenge believers to faithfulness (2 Corinthians 13:5-8).

answers.org/theology/is_god_tempted.html

Does this make sense to you?


#25

The devil tempting Jesus 3 times:

In Mathew 4:1-2 “Then Jesus was led by the spirit up into the wilderness to be tempted by the Devil. After he had fasted forty days and forty nights, then he felt hungry.” **One has to ask himself a very simple question here: Why would Jesus allow the Devil to lead him to the wilderness to try to tempt him if he were God? This clearly proves that Jesus is not and can not be God!!!. **

In Mathew 4:5-6 “The devil took him along into the holy city, and he stationed him upon the battlement of the temple and said to him: If you are a son of God, hurl yourself down; for it is written He (Jehovah) will give his angels a charge concerning you, and they will carry you on their hands, that you may at no time strike your foot against a stone. Jesus said to him: Again it is written, you must not put Jehovah your God to the test.” Here we see that the devil for the second time tried to tempt Jesus and have him do things that would make him doubt his GOD Jehovah or Allah. Jesus replied to him by telling him that no matter what you try to do, you will never be able to test your GOD (your creator). The devil was trying to have Jehovah or Allah send angels to Jesus, and Jesus made it clear to the devil that no one can put GOD to the test, and no one can have GOD do anything without the will of GOD. The devil will never be able to have Jehovah or Allah send down his angels if Jehovah didn’t will it.

In Mathew 4:8-10 “Again the devil took him along to an unusually high mountain, and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory, and he said to him: All these things I will give you if you fall down and do an act of worship to me. Then Jesus said to him: God away Satan! For it is written, It is Jehovah your God you must worship, and it is to him alone, you must render sacred service.” ** Here we clearly see that after the devil offered Jesus the world, Jesus told him to go away and to go and worship Allah Almighty or Jehovah. One has to ask himself a very simple question here: If Jesus was Jehovah, then how come he didn’t tell Satan in Mathew 4:8-10 “It is me whom you must worship” ? Jesus told Satan “It is Jehovah your God you must worship”, which clearly shows that Jesus is not Jehovah!!!.**


#26

Christ could not “love” God if he didn’t have free will. He did have free will and He was tempted. From reading the society of Jesus Encylopedia Link I’m not convinced they are right. Firstly what does the Magisterium teach on the matter? It is so interesting to me how they (the society of Jesus) now believe so many of the Saints and Fathers of the Church had it all wrong concerning Jesus physical state of being. Doesn’t that bother you a little?

I’m not so sure I’d be looking to todays Jesuit order to find out what they think. The Jesuits of today are not the same breed as yesteryears.

Perhaps we should ask another question that relates.

Could Jesus Despair? One might say that it’s not in God’s nature to dispair in the same way it’s not in His nature to sin, but we know that Jesus was dispairing in Gethsemene but continued on to do and “chose” to do God’s will. “Not my will but yours…” Christ said.

I’m no theologian but that doesn’t mean alot of theologians don’t have their heads up their U Know Whats.


#27

[quote=Verbum Caro]Right FCEGM.

Often this doctrine is not completely apprehended in its fullness – as an absolutely necessary result of the incarnation. The Church has always defended and preserved this great and supreme Truth regarding the incarnation: Jesus is God.

The concept of the hypostatic union describes for us the Truth that Jesus is only *one Person, *and He is a Divine Person, and that He is God. All persons, however, have natures. In Christ’s case His Personhood had the Divine Nature appropriate to Him, but also a Human Nature taken on by Him. Thus He could operate in both natures, but it was always He, the Divine Person who operated.

Natures don’t operate, persons do. Similiarly Natures don’t sin, only persons do.

When *we *sin, we (our personhood) sins in our human nature or with our human nature.

Jesus, although posessing a human nature COULD NOT SIN, because He is God, His Personhood is Divine, and a Divine Person cannot, by definition, sin.

This Truth of the Incarnation is a deep joyful mystery that we should often revist and tarry in.

What do you think?
God Bless and Happy Advent,
VC
[/quote]

What do I think? :thumbsup: And God bless you this Christmastide, VC.


#28

[quote=AquinasXVI]Contarini:

Lo and behold–you’re a Thomist! Excellent points.

I’d just like to add, from somewhere in the CCC, that the two natures of Christ was not a schizophrenic reality…it is first and foremost a mystery, but what we can safely say is that the two natures were not in contention of each other. It was/is in perfect harmony. The human nature of Christ was not compromised by the divine nature.

in XT.
[/quote]

Well then I’m a Thomist as well… Contarini described what I meant better than I did. It’s a funny thing because several months ago I did an online survey type of questionaire to find out whose philosophy I most adhered to, and it came back as Aquinas.

PS: I had to go search for a definition of “Thomist” (how embarrassing!)


#29

[quote=Contarini]Part of the problem is with the meaning of the word “could” (sorry if I sound like Bill Clinton!).

One way philosophers ask this question is: “Is there a possible world in which Jesus, being fully human and divine, sinned.” And the orthodox Christian answer is “no.” But as a human being he had all the “equipment” for sinning. He experienced real temptation. To His human mind the possibility of sin presented itself as a real possibility. Yes, the result was inevitable, because His human will was completely united to the will of God and could not be otherwise (Jesus being a divine Person with a human nature). But psychologically speaking the decision not to sin was reached in exactly the same way that our decisions are reached. That’s my understanding anyway. If I’m unorthodox, I’m sure someone will point it out!

As for God being able to do anything, my understanding is that God can do anything God can will to do. But God cannot do anything contrary to His nature. Again, the question is what we mean by “can.” Nothing could stop God if God chose to sin. I think that is Loboto-Me’s point.

Of course, some theologians would say that what makes sin sin is going against God’s will, so the question whether God could sin is meaningless. I don’t hold that position–or rather, I think (with the mainstream of the Christian tradition) that God has a nature that is immutable and that this puts limits on what God may possibly will.

Edwin
[/quote]

Good point!

God cannot do what is logically impossible (contradictory) and therefore irrational. This would be like saying God could choose not to exist.

Peace


#30

[quote=DJIGIT]The devil tempting Jesus 3 times:

In Mathew 4:1-2 “Then Jesus was led by the spirit up into the wilderness to be tempted by the Devil. After he had fasted forty days and forty nights, then he felt hungry.” **One has to ask himself a very simple question here: Why would Jesus allow the Devil to lead him to the wilderness to try to tempt him if he were God? This clearly proves that Jesus is not and can not be God!!!. **

Jesus allowed it because it was the will of the Father. The Son does, always, the will of the Father.

In Mathew 4:5-6 “The devil took him along into the holy city, and he stationed him upon the battlement of the temple and said to him: If you are a son of God, hurl yourself down; for it is written He (Jehovah) will give his angels a charge concerning you, and they will carry you on their hands, that you may at no time strike your foot against a stone. Jesus said to him: Again it is written, you must not put Jehovah your God to the test.” Here we see that the devil for the second time tried to tempt Jesus and have him do things that would make him doubt his GOD Jehovah or Allah. Jesus replied to him by telling him that no matter what you try to do, you will never be able to test your GOD (your creator). The devil was trying to have Jehovah or Allah send angels to Jesus, and Jesus made it clear to the devil that no one can put GOD to the test, and no one can have GOD do anything without the will of GOD. The devil will never be able to have Jehovah or Allah send down his angels if Jehovah didn’t will it.

Jesus said “You must not”. He didn’t say “You can not.” He was quoting Scripture which forbids what Satan was trying to get Jesus to do. Again, the Son does the will of the Father.

In Mathew 4:8-10 “Again the devil took him along to an unusually high mountain, and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory, and he said to him: All these things I will give you if you fall down and do an act of worship to me. Then Jesus said to him: God away Satan! For it is written, It is Jehovah your God you must worship, and it is to him alone, you must render sacred service.” Here we clearly see that after the devil offered Jesus the world, Jesus told him to go away and to go and worship Allah Almighty or Jehovah. One has to ask himself a very simple question here: If Jesus was Jehovah, then how come he didn’t tell Satan in Mathew 4:8-10 “It is me whom you must worship” ? Jesus told Satan “It is Jehovah your God you must worship”, which clearly shows that Jesus is not Jehovah!!!.

*Jesus, as He had before, quoted Scripture, which tells us we must worship only God and no other. This does not imply that He thought Satan would actually worship God…only that He, Jesus, refused to worship Satan. *
*In any case, the fact that Jesus did not at that point announce His Divinity, is in no way evidence that he lacked Divinity. *

[/quote]

… @ Verbum Caro, Mosher and Contarini. Thank each of you for clarifying some thoughts for me. :slight_smile:


#31

and Daniel Marsh is just a footnote?


#32

Hello Montie,

The Church teaches that Jesus being fully God and fully man in the same Being is a crux or a mystery.

We as Catholics believe that Jesus is eternally begotten of God. When was Jesus eternally begotten of God? Could Jesus sin before He is eternally begotten of God?

We know that God is Omni-Present to the whole of physical time. Take this example: Man is judged by Jesus upon judgement day at the end of time. The names of the elect are written down by Jesus, upon Judgement day, into the spiritual book of life which God has with Him at creation. The book of life, though written upon Judgement day, exists before creation because it is spiritual and Omni-Present to the whole of physical time.

Scripture tells us that Jesus is begotten of God at His ressurection. Pre-“begotten of God” Jesus would be capable of sin. Post-“begotten of God” Jesus would be Omni-Present God to the whole of physical time and incapable of sin. Thus Jesus is both fully free willed man, capable of sin, and fully God, incapable of sin, in the same Being during the period in physical time of His flesh.

Can Jesus love the Father with out the free willed option to choose not to love the Father? Is it fair to compare Satan as unrighteous and Jesus as righteous, if Satan is the only one with the capacity of free will to choose unrighteousness? The true greatness of Jesus is His tremendous perfect obedient love for the Father which He produced as, free from the will of the Father, man on earth.

Please visit: Jesus Loves God

NAB HEB 4:14Since, then, we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast to our profession of faith. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weakness, but one who was tempted in every way that we are, yet never sinned. NAB PSA 2:4

He who is throned in heaven laughs; the LORD derides them; Then in anger he speaks to them; he terrifies them in his wrath: “I myself have set up my king on Zion, my holy mountain. I will proclaim the decree of the LORD: The LORD said to me, 'You are my son; this day I have begotten you. Ask of me and I will give you the nations for an inheritance and the ends of the earth for your possession. You shall rule them with an iron rod: you shall shatter them like an earthen dish.’” NAB ACT 13:32

“We ourselves announce to you the good news that what God promised our fathers he has fulfilled for us, their children, in raising up Jesus, according to what is written in the second psalm, You are my son; this day I have begotten you.

NAB JOH 17:4 (Jesus after His ressurection)

“I have given you glory on earth by finishing the work you gave me to do. Do you now, Father, give me glory at your side, a glory I had with you before the world began.” NAB REV 1:17 (Jesus after His ressurection)

" . . . I am the First and the Last and the One who lives. Once I was dead but now **I live forever and ever. . . ." **


#33

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