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How does the Incarnation Fulfill God's Redemption?
Transcript of How does the Incarnation Fulfill God's Redemption?
Theotokos: A Greek title for Mary meaning “God bearer.”
a solemn agreement between human beings or between God and humans, in which mutual commitments are made
Juan and the Fish Bowl
What the Incarnation is
What the Incarnation is not
Incarnation: From the Latin, meaning “to become flesh,” referring to the biblical Revelation that Jesus is both true God and true man.
Christology - the study of the person and life of Jesus Christ, his ministry, and his mission.
Immaculate Conception: The dogma that Mary was conceived without Original Sin and remained free from personal sin throughout her entire life.
Protoevangelium: The first announcement of the Good News and promise of God’s redemptive love through the person of Jesus Christ.
theophany: God’s breaking into the human dimension so an individual's and community's understanding of God is deepened or changed.
Paschal Mystery: The work of salvation accomplished by Jesus Christ mainly through his Passion, death, Resurrection, and Ascension.
polytheism: The belief in many gods.
expiation: The act of atoning for sin or wrongdoing.
confederation: An alliance of tribes or nations with no central authority.
patriarch: The father or leader of a tribe, clan, or tradition. Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob were the patriarchs of the Israelite people.
spiritual sense: A form of biblical interpretation that goes beyond the literal sense to consider what the realities and events of the Scriptures signify and mean for salvation.
literal sense: A form of biblical interpretation that considers the explicit meaning of the text. It lays the foundation for all other senses of the Scriptures.
fratricide: To kill one’s own brother or sister.
God's covenant with Creation after the Flood
God's Covenant with Hagar
Gen 16: 1-16
God's Covenant with Abraham and Sarah
The Sinai Covenant
2 Samuel 7:8-21, 28-29
God's Covenant with David and the People
God promises a new covenant to the people of God
God did not give up on humanity after the Fall but formed covenants with our ancestors in faith
Image in public domain
Image in public domain
Mary had no choice in whether she was to be the Mother of God.
Jesus was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit.
To fulfill the promise of the Covenant, God often acts through those who are considered to be weak and powerless.
Jesus is just the first of Mary’s sons.
The Church recognizes Mary as remaining a virgin throughout her life.
The human and divine natures are all mixed together (sort of like a smoothie) in the one Person of Jesus.
Jesus was human like us in all things except sin.
Jesus absorbed our human nature (sort of like a sponge).
The Incarnation is the Word of God made flesh.
Jesus is made of the same “God-stuff,” substance, or
as God the Father and God the Holy Spirit.
Because Jesus was fully divine, he did not have to work like everyone else.
Jesus did not have some super-human IQ; he thought with a human mind.
Jesus was immune to emotional pain, fear, and heartbreak.
Jesus is the savior of all.
“Christ” is the Greek translation of Yahweh.
Jesus was sometimes called Lord, a title the Jews used for God.
The Parable of Juan and the Fishbowl
Juan was a boy about six years old who lived in Spanish Harlem, in New York City. His family was poor, so Juan had few toys. Many times he went out into the alley behind the apartment buildings to bounce a ball off the brick walls or to pick through the garbage to find something to play with.
One day when Juan was scavenging, he found a glass bowl covered with grime. Because he had so few things, Juan saw a beauty in that bowl that we would probably miss. He was very excited. He took his discovery gently in his hands and carefully climbed the steps up to the apartment his family lived in. Then Juan carried the bowl to the kitchen sink and began to clean it. When he was finished, Juan was delighted because he discovered that his bowl was perfect. No scratch or chip marred its beauty. Juan gingerly carried the bowl to the kitchen table, sat down, and admired the bowl. Juan was happy.
After a short time, however, the thrill of discovery began to wear off, and Juan started to get bored. Then he had an idea. He would decorate his bowl. So Juan went down to the street and picked up a handful of shiny pebbles and pieces of wire and sticks. He took what he had collected back to his apartment, sat down again by his bowl, and set to work. Juan placed the pebbles on the bottom of the bowl and pretended they formed a roadway. Next he placed the wire and sticks among the pebbles and pretended they were bushes and trees. Then Juan had another idea. He got an old tin can cut it in half lengthwise, placed it over the roadway, and pretended it was a tunnel. When Juan was finished, he looked upon his bowl with great pride—it was beautiful! Juan was happy again.
Once more, however, the wonder and charm of the bowl began to fade for Juan, and he began to lose that special thrill he had felt. Finally Juan realized what he was missing; he had no one with whom to share his bowl, no one to enjoy what he had created. So Juan went to his mother. “Mama,” he said, “can I buy a goldfish to put in my bowl?” Juan’s mother thought for a long time, knowing they had very little money. When she looked into Juan’s eyes, however, she did what all mothers tend to do. She said, “All right, Juan,” and went to the cupboard and found a dollar. She placed it in Juan’s hand.
Juan’s feet seemed to fly above the sidewalk as he ran to the store on the corner. He bought a beautiful goldfish, ran back to his apartment, filled his new bowl with water, and gently dropped the fish into it. Then Juan began to talk to his fish: “Swim along the roadway fish. That’s why I put it there—to make you happy.” The fish merely swam around and around in the bowl, unaware of Juan’s handiwork. “Hey, why don’t you swim among the trees I made for you? That’s why I put them there—to make you happy.” The fish just kept swimming in circles, ignorant of Juan’s pleas. Finally Juan became so frustrated that he began to pound on the side of the bowl, demanding that his fish swim through the tunnel. Again no response. The fish kept swimming around and around.
Juan ran to his mother in tears. “Mama, why doesn’t my fish listen to me? I keep telling him what’s going to make him happy, but he won’t do what I say. Why?” Juan’s mother was very wise and had been watching what was going on. Gently she took Juan on her lap and said: “Juan, the trouble is that you and the fish speak different languages. He doesn’t understand what you’re trying to tell him. The only way he could understand would be if you could become a fish, jump into the bowl, and swim along the roadway, among the trees, and through the tunnel. Then maybe the fish would watch you, see how you live in the bowl, and follow you.” So Juan spent a lot of time wishing he could be a fish.
Because Jesus was fully human, his body had physical limitations.
Jesus was made by God the Father.
making sense of things
the explicit meaning of the text
what the scriptures mean to our salvation
the titles say it all
Son of God
Hebrew for "God Saves"
Reflects his divine identity and mission
Greek trans. of Heb. word for "Messiah" (which means "anointed")
signifies unique relationship with God
a title of respect in Jesus' time
Greek word (Kyrios) used by Jews instead of Yahweh
Reasons for the Incarnation
to reconcile us with God through the forgiveness of sins
after The Fall, humans were separated from full communion with God
"In this is Love: not that we have loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as expiation for our sins." 1 John 4:10
that we might know the depths of God's love
after The Fall, humanity did not experience or understand the true nature of God's unconditional love for us
"For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life." John 3:16
to be our model of holiness
As God, Jesus Christ is perfect holiness
as a man he shows us how to be holy in our everyday lives
success and failure in keeping the covenant
The Judges of Israel
The Israelites settle Canaan without a central government (confederation)
the people ask for a king
watchdogs of the Covenant and the Law
When faced with an invading threat, God raises a judge (like Samson here)
Judges are more like chieftains or military leaders than what we think of judges
Cycle of the Judges
They forget the Law and the Covenant
basically, they worship other gods
God allows them to fall into the hands of their enemies
they realize their sin and call to God for deliverance
God raises up a judge
Things are good again...
...they keep the covenant...
the judge leads them in victory over their enemies
Gideon and Deborah
...for a while, but then...
Samuel warns them against it, but they don't care. He anoints Saul (and later David)
the tribes are united, but the kings are flawed
Saul - no trust
too much lust
too much greed
sorry, I couldn't rhyme everything
the other kings are worse - lots of idolatry
Josiah and Hezekiah try to lead them back to the covenant
they don't tell the future, they tell the truth
they call people back to the covenant
the people refuse to listen...
...so the Exile happens
"stop your idolatry!"
"act with justice toward the poor!"
but the prophets also offered hope, and foreshadow Christ's role as a prophet