A Clay Jar

Encouraging, comforting, and urging you to live lives worthy of God, who calls you into his kingdom and glory. (1 Thess. 2:12 NIV)

What I Believe about Jesus

This is a short summary of what I believe about Jesus. For a longer discussion see the posts The Nature of Jesus and The Work of Jesus.

The Nature of Jesus

  • I believe that Jesus is God incarnate, that he has always been God and always will be God. That he is the second member of the Trinity and is ontologically equal with the Father and the Holy Spirit. I also believe that in his incarnation Jesus became functionally submissive to the Father. And that he is the creator of this universe as well as its sustaining force (Col. 2:16-17).
  • I believe that during his incarnation Jesus recognized his divinity, although I am uncertain just when he fully recognized that. During his visit to the temple at twelve years old he surely recognized some part of who he was (Luke 2:49), and by the time of his baptism he had become fully aware that he was God in the flesh (Luke 3:22). Jesus disciples seemed not to fully appreciate who he was until after his resurrection (John 20:28) and the coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost (Acts 2:36).
  • I believe that Jesus was as fully human as any other person (Heb. 2:17). Jesus had the same physical limitations as any human, being subject to hunger (Matt. 4:2) and thirst (John 19:28), to growing weary (John 4:6), and subject to human emotions (John 11:35). Jesus had the same desires and temptations as any other man, yet he was without sin (Heb. 4:15). Jesus also went through all of the same developmental stages that a human goes through, from conception to birth, childhood development, and adulthood.
  • I believe that Jesus was fully and completely human and God at the same time. I do not understand how this was possible, or just how his two natures functioned together, but do accept that it is possible for the infinite God to join himself to a finite human nature. In doing so, I believe that Jesus, for the length of his stay on earth, limited himself to what a human could know and do.

The Work of Jesus

  • I believe that the Scriptures use many different models to describe Jesus’ work while here. Jesus’ death was a ransom payment (Mark 10:45). It was a propitiation (1 John 2:2), making God favorably inclined toward us. His death was the means of enacting reconciliation between God and humanity (Rom. 5:11). And he was an atoning sacrifice (Rom. 3:25), paying the penalty for our sins. I believe all of these models give us a glimpse into the work of Christ, but none of them are complete in themselves. There is a mystery in the atoning work of Christ that is beyond our understanding.
  • I believe that Jesus’ death on the cross was somehow substitutionary, that he died in my place. Jesus took the place of the goats of the Day of Atonement; one offered as atonement for sin, and the other bearing my sin into the wilderness (Lev. 16:7-10; Heb. 9:23-28). Jesus is also pictured as the Passover lamb (1 Cor. 5:7), whose blood turns away the wrath of God. I believe that Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross dealt not just with my sinful nature, but also with my actual sins, both past and future.
  • I believe that Jesus’ atoning work on the cross is available to all who respond to him in faith (Rom. 3:22). I do not believe that it is only applicable to a select few that God has chosen and who have no choice but to respond. Nor do I believe that it is universally applied to everyone throughout history. But all those who put their faith in his blood (Rom. 3:25) will be covered by his atoning work.

2 thoughts on “What I Believe about Jesus”

  1. Jesus died for me & my loved ones. We are Christians & tried to live good lives. We aren’t perfect & sinless, but we love God & Jesus & the Holy Spirit & believe in all three. So, we in the belief (frame of mind) that we will joined up Christ, for eternity. We thank Jesus for his gift to us & we tell others about our lives & choices.


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