I am so excited to share this post today. The perfection of Christ and how HIs second nature of humanity being perfected on the cross was never something I was familiar with growing up. I never thought deeply about Christ having two natures, both the God nature and then adding the humanity nature to Himself, becoming the God-Man. But it is so crucial in understanding the Gospel.
Originally, this post was written in 2019, but throughout the years I have continued to edit the post, add scriptures, expand explanations, and add some new pieces. As of today, the 5th update has been March 31st, 2022. The newest update has taken me several hrs and I believe it is ready to be shared again.
With Easter coming soon, Resurrection Day, I hope this post is a blessing to you, and helps you critically think about Christ, His humanity, the suffering He experienced on this earth, how the Lord understands our own suffering, and how God can use suffering for His glory and our refinement.
Christ was blameless. He was pure. We view the word “perfect” in a very worldly sense that often strips away how Christ was human, and His struggles being human. But we do need to acknowledge what separates Christ from us is the fact that Christ is, was, and will forever be God. We are not God. Christ being God is why Jesus was able to come to us as the Perfect Man and be the perfect sacrifice.
KEY POINT: The perfection we are looking at today is on how Christ as the God-Man perfected His humanity, from birth to death. Christ was resurrected because He was perfect, sinless, He truly lived a sinless life. Death could not hold Him because the wages of sin is death. While Christ paid off the wages of sin for others in their place, He Himself was sinless. This is why we are accredited with His righteousness, not our own becauase we have none.
Scripture says He is our High Priest because He can sympathize with us, He understands. (Hebrews 4:15) There is this powerful movement throughout every single thing Christ did in His life. He was perfect, but at the cross, He was perfected.
Christ was challenged daily and He was able to overcome every single temptation and problem because of God. Christ was fully God, and He also was fully Man. He is referred to as the God-Man for this reason.(John 8:39-40, 1 Timothy 2:05-07, Philippians 2:05-08 and 1 John 4:02-03)
(IMPORTANT) Significance of Christ being the God-Man Brief Note:
Son of God, Son of Man = God-Man. In the book of Daniel ch.7, the first of Daniel’s visions, we see the glory of the Lord presented, starting in verses 9-10. Then we see a picture of One “like the Son of Man” in verse 13, a title that Christ often uses in the Gospels to describe Himself. The Jewish people knew when this phrase was used it was going back to Daniel 7, a picture of the arrival of the Messiah. (This is actually a picture of Christ’s Second Coming) Christ proclaimed to be the Son of God, and the Son of Man. He was the God-Man. This declaration of being God, the Messiah, infuriated the Jewish people because they knew He was proclaiming Himself to be God. (See: Daniel 7:13-14)
Christ lived His whole life denying Himself and following the will of the Father, not His own will. Though God, Christ never used the fact that He was God to His advantage. He was always in submission to the Father. Jesus could have followed His will at any time. He was never emptied of His power, His will, or anything. He choose freely and completely how He would obey. (Luke 22:42, John 4:34 & 14:31)
(ESV) Hebrews 5:07, “In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to him who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverence.” Reverence is honor or respect. God answered Christ’s prayers. Jesus was the only way, as Jesus says in John 14:06. And Jesus was resurrected from death. Corruption did not touch His body. See: Acts 13:36-37
Jesus Was Tempted & He Grew With God
I think sometimes we can lessen how Christ lived His life. Christ was tempted, like any other man. But Christ sought the Father deeply every single day. His prayers were intense. He disciplined His flesh and lost sleep many times. After preaching a whole day, we see Him leave the crowd and pray to His Father in private. There is a theme of Christ constantly drawing close to God in submission to His will. We can all learn from His example. (Matthew 14:23, Mark 1:35, Mark 6:46, Luke 3:21, Luke 5:16, Luke 6:12, Luke 9:18, Luke 9:28 )
Scripture shows there is a progression in Christ, starting when He was young.
(ESV) Luke 2:52, “And Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man.”
He never used the fact that He was God, as an advantage. We know from the beginning Christ had favor with God, He is one of the 3 Persons of the Trinity. But He continued to GROW in favor with the Lord and man, as the God-Man. Recommended Resources on the Trinity: Mike Winger – The Trinity Can We Defend It Biblically? & Chris Rosebrough/Doreen Virtue – The Holy Trinity Clearly Explained by Pastor Chris Rosebrough of Fighting 4 Faith
(Q&A) Was Christ’s Life Easy For Him Because He Was The God-Man? No.
Being God’s Son did not mean things were handed to Christ. They weren’t.
(NLT) Hebrews 5:08, “Even though Jesus was God’s Son, He learned obedience from the things He suffered.”
It is through this progression of obedience and devotion to the Lord we see Christ deny Himself on the cross. Jesus wasn’t just God and then boom beamed to the earth as the God-Man and boom instantly became the atonement sacrifice. No. He lived a full, and often difficult, life. Consider the following:
- He was born to a poor family.
- He didn’t make Himself known for prosperity because He was a poor man.
- He wasn’t a radical social justice warrior, a reason the Jews did not want to believe He was the Messiah.
- He had no place to lay His head.
- His family and hometown rejected Him.
- His friends deserted Him in His darkest hour.
- The people He came to preach to and save rejected Him and often tried to kill Him, and do kill Him eventually, though Christ conquers death and resurrects.
- People desired His miracles over trusting Him as a leader and what He had to say.
- In fact, people stopped following when they realized what He had to say was quite serious and not as fun as getting free food.
- He was mocked.
- People slandered Him and bore false witness of Him. Again, the same people He came to save.
- His closest friends left Him. One betrayed Him and another denied Him to others.
- Even as He was dying the people He came to save mocked Him.
This is the sick and wicked world we live in. Do we seriously think Jesus had it easy and was never bothered by these things? Do we seriously believe He didn’t hurt, sorrow, and struggle?
Jesus never had it easy walking this earth, and when we act like Christ had it easy, it’s like we’re spitting in His face, just like the mockers.
As if everything Jesus went through isn’t “good enough” in our eyes to think He understands our situation. WE are the ones being cruel and deceived when we believe this lie, not God.
WE are the ones who need to be humbled. WE are the ones being hypocrites, having the plank in our eye and claiming there is a speck in the eye of Christ.
The Bible says Christ grew in obedience and He was a servant. Either God is lying or we are the liars, and God does not lie. It is not easy being a servant, for anyone. But consider what it means for the Creator to bend the knee and serve the creation… what kind of humility that takes. Before thinking He does not understand, consider what it meant for Christ to be humbled in this way.
Christ served God and others with true humility, grace, kindness, and love. We need to learn from His example, instead of thinking He doesn’t understand. WE are the ones who need to understand. WE are the ones who are lacking.
(ESV) Philippians 2:05-08, “Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.” Empty here actually relates to adding something, which was the nature of humanity. He didn’t empty Himself of the form of God, Christ emptied Himself BY adding humanity. How insane is that?! The act of adding the human nature is a humble act.
Becoming obedient to death is not something that happens when someone has an easy life, including the God-Man. He needed to be humbled, and God says He was. This is what it takes for Jesus to become the atonement sacrifice. This is what it means to be a living sacrifice.
Pain and humility cannot be avoided, not even for the Savior. God understands us on a deeper level than we can ever fathom. However, it is important and respectful we give Him the glory in at least knowing He understands us deeply.
Jesus Became A Phyical Intervention For Us | Adding Humanity To Himself, Now Having 2 Natures God-Man
It is important to note, Christ is not created, the Son of God has always been. See: Daniel 3:25, Jesus was in the fiery furnace with Daniel’s friends. He had not added humanity to Himself at that time.
In order for the debt of sin to be paid off, humanity needed a Savior in the image of fallen man, yet not corrupted by sin.
Jesus was born perfect, pure from sin as He was conceived by the way of the Holy Spirit overshadowing Mary. The way Christ was conceived is important because Jesus as the God-Man did not inherit the sin of Adam. He was not created from humans (an egg and sperm) because Jesus is not a created being. He is God, and as God He humbled Himself by adding humanity to His nature in the form of being placed in the womb as a babe.
This supernatural act is what it means when Christ says what is impossible with man is not impossible with God. Only God can save the sinner. Man can only pass sin onto his offspring, which means a virgin birth is needed.
Only God could take the image of man and perfect and atone for humanity’s sin on the cross.
Jesus physically intervened on our behalf when He took the form of our image. The cross would be the manifestation of His humanity being perfected. He was the only man, as the God-Man, to live a completely perfect life, obeying the Law. Only God can be perfect.
Whereas the Law is there to condemn us, to reveal to us we are sinful, because we simply cannot keep the Law perfectly. Christ kept the Law perfectly, in the image of fallen man. It is because of Christ resurrecting and conquering death that the fallen image of man can be resurrected and glorified through the atonement of Jesus Christ.
(ESV) Romans 8:03-04, “For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.”
Jesus Was The Perfect Sacrifice, Chosen Before The World
Christ was perfect in every sense, as God and Man. Unlike us, He was blameless from the start. As a human, He continued to grow. He did not allow His blamelessness to anchor Him. He was actively seeking God, the will of the Father, and being devoted to God’s word. Giving time to the Lord, not only daily, but throughout the day!
(ESV) Hebrews 2:10, “For it was fitting that he, for whom and by whom all things exist, in bringing many sons to glory, should make the founder of their salvation perfect through suffering.” All things were made through Christ the Creator. As Christ added humanity as a second nature, Christ would therefore suffer as other humans had suffered, He more-so than anyone else, being the atonement sacrifice and the Holy One, the God-Man. No other human has had it worse than Christ.
Christ always conquered His flesh because IT WAS NEVER about His flesh, but God. His focus was on serving the Lord. He had eyes on eternity. He had love for God over Himself. He would serve others over Himself. Christ gave His body up for us but even before and during His atonement, He submitted Himself daily to honor and obey the will of the Lord. (Mark 12:30, 2 Corinthians 4:18)
And through Christ we now can do the same. We can die to our flesh daily, and serve the Lord with everything we have in our mind, body, and soul.
(ESV) 1 Peter 1:18-20, “knowing that you were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your forefathers, not with perishable things such as silver or gold,
but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot. He was foreknown before the foundation of the world but was made manifest in the last times for the sake of you.”
We are accredited the righteousness of Christ because our sins were accredited to Him on the cross. We must repent of our sins and put our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. He is the only way and He alone is sufficient.
Christ knows what it is like to suffer, and it is no surprise, His power shines the brightest when we suffer, too. Perhaps our fading light of deception reveals we were the ones in darkness and Christ alone is the true light.
(ESV) 2 Corinthians 12:09, “But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”
The Gospel Message– The Gospel message is good news, which means there’s bad news. We all are sinners and condemned. We all deserve the just punishment of God’s wrath. Christianity is unlike any other religion because we cannot earn our way into Heaven. God saw the weakness of man and his utter depravity. Yet, He showed us grace. Jesus, God, One Person of the Trinity, became God in the flesh, the God-Man. He was always perfect and sinless. And His humanity was perfected on the cross, living the full sinless life. He became our atonement sacrifice. Dying in our place, taking on the wrath of God upon Himself. He died on the cross, and He was resurrected because death could not hold Him. Jesus is the answer. We, as guilty sinners, need His blood to pay off our debt of sin. For all who put their faith in Him – meaning eyes are opened to the Gospel, we see ourselves as a sinner, we see the need for Christ, we desire our Savior, and we see the ugliness of our sin. Putting our faith in Jesus, we seek HIs forgiveness and repent from our sins, we turn away from our old way of life. We, through the work of the Holy Spirit, continue to become convicted of sin daily. Our eyes will never be the same again. We see things in a different light, and the truth of Christ affects how we live and serve Him. Christ tells us to count the cost. Salvation is a serious topic, it is not to be taken lightly. For a breakdown of this powerful message, understanding how Christ could be God and Man, why God required sacrifices, and more -please see: Why Did A Loving God Kill His Son? (Does God Hate?)
If you think you know the Gospel, check out these questions and see how prepared you are for the day someone might ask you why you believe: The Gospel Challenge (30 Question Quiz) – Are You Ready To Defend Your Faith