Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Read Colossians 1:15-23

One of the mysteries of Christian faith is the affirmation that Jesus was both fully human and fully divine - a mystery because logic can provide no explanation. Yet this affirmation is one of our bedrock beliefs. We cannot sacrifice either emphasis, Jesus of Nazareth and the Cosmic Christ.

In some periods of church history the emphasis has been on the divinity of Jesus. At other times we have been more interested in his humanity. Before becoming famous as a missionary, Albert Schweitzer wrote The Quest for the Historical Jesus, an enormously influential book.

These verses from Colossians may have originated as a hymn, often referred to as The Hymn of the Cosmic Christ. Notice how often the author underscores that point in a few verses. Jesus was

the image of the invisible God (verse 15)
the firstborn of all creation (verse 15)
in him were all things created (verse 16)
he is before all things (verse 17)
by him all things hold together (verse 17)
he is the head of the body (verse 18)
he is the beginning (verse 18)
the firstborn from the dead (verse 18)
he has first place in everything (verse 18)
in him all the fullness of God dwells (verse 19)
through him God reconciled all things, making peace (verse 20)

I find that my identification with Jesus of Nazareth or the Cosmic Christ depends upon my circumstances and needs. I affirm both, but most often one or the other is foremost in my praying and thinking?

Leave a comment about your own experience. Thanks.

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