Was Jesus "perfect"


#1

I am certain the answer is “yes”, but I need specifics as relates to his righteous anger at the money changers in the temple. I have a child in Catholic school, and his 5th grade teacher made the point to him that “Jesus is not perfect”, used in a way to help children feel better about making mistakes. He subsequently has used that line at home and we finally learned where he heard it. We confronted the teacher, who is also Catholic, and she sticks by her statement that she believes Jesus was a man and therefore not perfect, letting anger get the best of him in the temple. How do we teach her what the Church teaches on this subject?


#2

As the fifth century Athanasian Creed put it, “He is perfect God; and He is perfect man, with a rational soul and human flesh. He is equal to the Father in His divinity but he is inferior to the Father in His humanity. Although He is God and man, He is not two but one Christ.And He is one, not because His divinity was changed into flesh, but because His humanity was assumed into God. He is one, not at all because of a mingling of substances, but because He is one person.”

Lots of good stuff here for you: ewtn.com/faith/teachings/incaa3.htm

Good grief, Jesus even told us to be perfect too.


#3

And look at the Catechism, esp 468:

vatican.va/archive/ccc_css/archive/catechism/p122a3p1.htm

How frustrating - it might be good to ask the teacher to discuss the VERY imperfect men that He gathered around Himself as a lesson in imperfection. The teacher means well, but is teaching against Christianity, rather than even ‘just’ the Church’s teachings.


#4

Do you believe that Jesus is God?
If so, there should be no problem.


#5

What was the teacher’s real point here?
I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that Joseph had to correct him on the use of some tools when Our Lord first picked them up as a child.
If you count ‘mistakes’ He may have made as a child (while learning new skills) then one might be able to say Jesus was less than perfect. But we have no knowledge of this - we can speculate but we do not know.
By the age of 12 Jesus was impressing the Elders of the Temple by his wisdom. Not perfect? …


#6

Thank you for the replies so far, they are all excellent. I am hoping someone can help me directly respond to her comment that the events in the temple with the money changers represent a mistake that Jesus made. I am afraid that our son is not the only one taking this lesson from her as legitimate. We have explained and corrected our son, but I want the teacher to be able to work back into this discussion with the other kids and speak to what really happened in the temple. This was clearly not a mistake and there are many possible teaching points here, such as a comparison of zeal and anger, a comparison of selfish anger and righteous indignation, what he means by calling the temple “my father’s house” (claiming irrefutably to be the son of God), etc… To take this event, which shows up in all 4 gospels and is clearly a sentinel event, and make the key teaching point that Jesus makes mistakes is beyond belief. I am utterly in shock and saddened that this is taught from a Catholic teacher in our Catholic schools.


#7

Jesus did not make a mistake.
He was teaching. the lesson is, “don’t defile the Lord’s house”.


#8

And if you ask me; THIS WAS THE BEST ANSWER. He was teaching them a lesson teacher, and that is not a sin.


#9

Of course Jesus is perfect! Jesus = God


#10

PS: his anger was perfect just anger.


#11

So, anger and destruction cannot be righteous anger and righteous destruction?That would be my first question.

My second would be if this man or woman ever read the Psalms, or the Torah. God is very angry and destructive in those places. Or if he ever read what Christ had to say about the Pharisees in Matthew 23. And elsewhere.

Does this teacher believe Jesus was God, too? As the Creed says? Does he not believe God is perfect? Does he even have an inkling of what that means?

It certainly doesn’t mean Jesus could not have gotten sick, or angry, or injured - certainly not that! - or have made errors in maths or carpentry or even in scripture study. Jesus was like us “in all things but sin”. That only means he could not have purposefully bunged Joseph’s thumb with an hammer, even if he did do so accidentally. And so on.


#12

Wow. Such ignorance.

Undermining a child’s faith and denying dogma in the name of feelings? :shrug: Our children (and we ourselves) are desperately effeminate as is.


#13

The area that had been set up for money changing and the sale of animals wasn’t intended for that purpose. It too was intended to be an area of prayer and worship. It was the outer court, specifically intended for gentiles who had not fully initiated themselves into Judaism but who acknowledged and worshipped the one true God to come and pray. In that way the organized worship of the one trye God had been open to non-Jews for about a thousand years.

In addition to cleansing the Temple and anger at those who defiled an area of worship, I think you can also find another layer of meaning about openness to the Gentiles and even the new covenant that would bring all people into FULL inclusion in the faith.


#14

Yes.


#15

What the teacher is forgetting here is that Jesus is also the rightful judge. Jesus judge the situation and the souls of the people involved and determined that they were doing wrong. To me this passage is a clear expression.of Jesus judging wrong action. The people.at the temple.we’re sinning and disrespecting God so Jesus reprimanded him. It was not a mistake Jesus did reprimand many people in many other passages and this is just one more that shows Jesus’.rejection.against sin.


#16

That was beautiful! Thank you so much for sharing!:smiley:


#17

Anger isn’t a sin. It’s becomes a sin when it is irrational, unjust, or excessive. Jesus, being God and not affected by original sin, had complete and perfect control over his anger, and used it accordingly. We are affected by original sin, thus don’t have perfect control over our irascible appetites, thus easily fall into excessive anger and are encouraged to avoid it unless justice requires it.


#18

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