THE GAME-CHANGING CLAUSE 04-23-2015

Miaphysite (The Jesus Paradox) means a person can’t refer to Jesus as God period without qualifying that: “God in human form” (Colossians 2:9). A believer also can’t refer to Jesus as human period without qualifying that: “the human incarnation of God” (John 1:14). This lightning bolt insight repairs Christianity’s ancient mystic foundation and has profound significance for the tradition as a whole.

Miaphysite (The Jesus Paradox) reflects the most basic mystical insights of monotheism—that unity is emphasized in theology. Monotheism affirms there’s one source of all. Contemporary authors have called this one source “the ground of all being” (Paul Tillich d. 1965) and “the tremendous mystery” (Rudolph Otto d. 1903). Monotheism addresses the very substance of reality itself at its most primal undifferentiated level, which existed before space, before time. Thomas Aquinas (d. 1274), in the spirit of monotheism, refers to ultimate reality (God) as “the first cause.” Aquinas traced the law of cause and effect back to the first cause, before all effects including space and time. For Judaism and Jewish mysticism in particular the most celebrated verse in the Hebrew Bible emphasizes God’s oneness: “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.” Jesus affirmed that this passage from Deuteronomy 6:4 is the most important verse in the Hebrew Bible (Mark 12:29). So too, the Alexandrian Christian Mystics assert Jesus is one: “at once God and human:” “one united dynamic nature.”

Jesus embodies one interdependent dynamic that encompasses absolute Deity and relative humanity. John 14:10a puts it well: “I am in God and God is in me.” In the person of Jesus God became human and a human was God. This balancing act of the mystics saves us from the extremes of fundamentalist Christianity (Jesus is God period, end of story). It also saves us from the extremes of New Age Christianity (Jesus is a human wisdom teacher period, end of story.) In Jesus we have the more mysterious and illusive conviction of God in human form (the unique testament of Christianity among the world religions).