Who was Jesus Christ?

Evidently the earliest Christians had some confusion about the nature of Jesus' divinity. These questions were not ironed out completely until the fourth century.

The New Testament itself gives these variations.

A. Jesus as a human political rabble rouser.

"Many people spread their cloaks on the road, while others spread reeds... [they] cried out: 'Hosanna!... Blessed is the reign of our father David to come!... he [Jesus] entered the temple precincts and began to drive out those engaged in buying and selling." Mark 11:8,9,10,15

B. Jesus as a mystic able to tap into the divine in an altered state of consciousness

"...[Jesus' family] came to take charge of him, [because they were] saying 'He is out of his mind' [literally "beside himself"; having a seizure or fit; usually a religious ecstasy]" Mark 3:21

As a result, the scribes (religious leaders) assert "He is possessed by Beelzebul,..." Mark 3:22

Jesus defends the Holy Spirit (which he was just communing with?) "'... whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven. He carries the guilt of his sin without end'. He spoke thus because they had said, 'He is possessed by an unclean spirit'" Mark 3:29-30

C. Jesus became the Son of God at his resurrection

"...the gospel concerning his Son, who was descended from David according to the flesh but was made Son of God in power according to the spirit of holiness, by his resurrection from the dead; Jesus Christ our Lord." Rom 1:3-4

"Men of Israel, listen to me! Jesus the Nazorean was a man whom God sent to you with miracles, wonders, and signs as his credentials... He was delivered up by the set purpose and plan of God; you even made use of pagans to crucify and kill him. God freed him from death's bitter pangs, however, and raised him up again... Exalted at God's right hand, he first received the promised Holy Spirit from the Father, then poured this Spirit out on us... Therefore let the whole house of Israel know beyond any doubt that God has made both Lord and Messiah this Jesus whom you crucified." Acts 2:22,23-24,33,36

D. Jesus became the Son of God at his baptism

"...while Jesus after his own baptism was at prayer, heaven opened and the Holy Spirit descended on him in a physical form, like a dove. And a voice came from heaven, 'You are my Son; today have I fathered you.'" Luke 3:21-22

E. Jesus became the Son of God at his birth

"The angel answered her [Mary] 'The Holy Spirit will come upon you and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; hence, the holy offspring to be born will be called the Son of God." Luke 1:35

F. Jesus as Pre-Existent "Logos" who came down from heaven

"Though he was in the form of God, he did not deem equality with God something to be grasped at. Rather he emptied himself and took the form of a slave, being born in the likeness of men." Philipians 2:6-7a

"In the beginning was the Word;... The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us,..." John 1:1a, 1:14a

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