Tuesday, July 31, 2012

He Made Himself Nothing

Reflections on Reflexive Verbs

Skeptics call Christianity child-abuse. They deride a God that would force his son to take the punishment for someone else's sin.

But no one forced Jesus to do anything.

Reading the "Kenosis" passage (aka Phil 2:5-11), I was struck by the many reflexive verbs — that is, verbs with the same subject and object.
Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus:
Who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,
but made himself nothing,
taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
and became obedient to death —
even death on a cross!
Jesus was not unceremoniously stripped of his glory and crammed into a human body. He wasn't forcibly sent off as a sacrifice.

He made himself nothing. He took on the nature of a servant. He humbled himself. He became obedient unto death.

We do not believe that the fall was a sudden shock that God had to recover from. Nor do we believe the cross was a scheme forced on the Son by an unloving Father. It was all part of the blueprint. God created us knowing the fall was coming. The Word spoke, seeing the cross on the horizon. And for the same reason, he made himself nothing — because he loved us.

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