Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread,"
In the centuries since the apostles, there has been a constant underground tendency among professed Christians to doubt or to underplay the reality of Christ's full humanity. This has been justified on the assumption that if we believe that Jesus took our full humanity as it is, then we must believe that He was a sinner (which is blasphemy), for Paul says that "all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God" (Rom. 3:23).
But that "all" has the One grand exception: Jesus Christ, who "condemned sin in the flesh"; the common flesh that all humans have inherited from the fallen Adam (Rom. 8:3).
Paul's next verse says that He did this so "that the righteousness of the law [dikaioma] might be fulfilled in us." That is a rare word; it appears again in Rev. 19:8 where the we read that the bride-to-be of the Lamb will be "arrayed in fine linen, clean and white, ... the dikaioma of saints."
The reason for the denials of the full humanity of the Savior is the shying away from the reality of our overcoming completely. Biblical "perfection" has often been misunderstood, it being assumed that it means physical perfection, but that is not biblical perfection; it's character perfection--and that is never to be a matter of "works" but only of faith.
The Enemy in the "great controversy between Christ and Satan" has his most violent hatred bottled up in this idea of human beings overcoming sin through the faith "of Jesus," because this Reality of the power of the gospel (Rom. 1:16) will constitute his final defeat and eternal condemnation.
If a corporate body of believers in Christ so "overcome," they will "judge" all humankind for the 6000 years (plus) of life on earth; and Christ will stand vindicated for all eternity. It will be seen by the universe that Christ has defeated Satan in his last lair where he has holed up for his last great conflict--the fallen, sinful flesh of humanity. People living in the same sinful flesh that Adam has passed on to us all, will themselves trample Satan underfoot in their overcoming, "even as [Christ] overcame" (cf. Rev. 3:20).
Oh the joy of victory over Satan! Not through self-righteousness (not a whiff of it!); but "in Christ." The stories and the news will be flashed over the universe; at last the wound of sin will have been healed, and the Lord's prayer will be answered, "Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven" (Matt. 6:10).
--Robert J. Wieland
From the "Dial Daily Bread" Archive: October 10, 2007.
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