Friday 31 December 2021

Bible Book:

Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as something to be exploited. (vs 5-6)

Philippians 2:5-11 Friday 31 December 2021

 Psalm 98:1-9


The question of who we think Jesus is has challenged the Church for as long as it has existed. We are comfortable to use our creeds to help understand the nature of Jesus, and the Nicene Creed says this: "We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, of one Being with the Father. Through him all things were made…he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary and was made man."

It took until 325AD to agree this way of understanding the nature of Jesus. Charles Wesley wrote, "Our God contracted to a span, incomprehensibly made man." In the best and proper sense, the nature and being of Jesus is a mystery – something that we glimpse but do not fully comprehend but whose truth underpins the reality of our faith.

Paul was one of the earlier thinkers to reflect on the nature of Jesus, and this passage is a credal affirmation of the Church. The passage begins to explore how Jesus and God are related; how Jesus acted to bring about new life for people; to begin to describe the incarnation; to look at the relationship the Church has with Jesus. All of these are important to Paul because Paul was sure that we needed to have some understanding of these things for faith to be possible.


To Ponder:

  • In what way are Jesus and God the Father different? Paul thought they were different because of the comment he made about Jesus not exploiting the relationship with God. Where do the differences lie?
  •  How much is understanding and comprehension needed to have faith? Our world is very rational and scientific. Is there a place for the mysterious and the even the mystic, where we can invite people to accept something in faith? Where do we see things we know are true even if we can’t explain them?
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