Was Jesus merely a nice Jewish teacher who over time began to be worshiped as a kind of god by later generations, or was he thought of as a divine from the earliest days of Christianity? What can we learn about this by examining the earliest documents of the Christian faith? On this program the hosts discuss Paul’s view of the deity of Christ in their continuing series on The Incarnation (originally aired 11-27-16).
The idea of Christ being the “firstborn of all creation,” as Paul states in Colossians 1:15, has caused a lot of confusion throughout church history. If there was a time when the Son of God was not, as many in the time of the Arian controversy had argued, then Jesus would not be co-eternal to the Father. But this is not the case. To understand what Paul meant, we have to understand his time period. In ancient history, the firstborn received all of the rights and privileges from the father, and a firstborn monarch inherited ruling sovereignty. So Paul isn’t saying that Jesus is the first created being, but rather that he is the true heir of all creation.Justin Holcomb
Author: Michael Horton
This introduction to the basic doctrines of Christianity is a helpful guide by a respected theologian and a popular author, and it includes discussion questions for individual or group use. Core Christianity is perfect for those who are new to the faith, as well as those who have an interest in deepening in their understanding of what it means to be a follower of Jesus Christ.
Did St. Paul get Jesus Right?
Author: David Wenham
Was St Paul a distorter of Jesus’ original message, or a faithful follower? Over recent years some critics of Christianity have claimed that while Jesus was a gifted teacher and a man of unparalleled kindness, St Paul was the true founder of Christianity, which he based on a delusional mistake: the idea that Jesus was God. Comparing the life and message of Jesus with the writings of St Paul, he offers a thoughtful exploration of their relationship, concluding that far from imagining Christianity, Paul was the messenger of an inherited faith.
From Good News to Gospels
Author: David Wenham
The good news of Jesus spread like wildfire through the Roman Empire in the decades between his death and the writing of the first gospels—but how? What exactly did the first Christians say about Jesus? In From Good News to Gospels David Wenham delves into the gospels, the book of Acts, and the writings of Paul to uncover evidence of a strong and substantial oral tradition in the early church. This book will inform, engage, and challenge readers, inspiring them to better understand and appreciate the earliest gospel message.