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To Harrak: Only seeming contradictions

Reader comment on item: How the Cartoon Protests Harm Muslims [by Leading to a Separation of Civilizations]
in response to reader comment: Answering my friend Lisa. The translation problem theory and the bible

Submitted by Richard Lion heart (United States), Feb 24, 2006 at 00:43

Who is the father of Joseph?
MAT 1:16 And Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is
called Christ.
LUK 3:23 And Jesus himself began to be about thirty years of age, being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph, which was the son of Heli.

To sort out this seeming contradiction one has to understand Jewish paternal genealogy.
Heli In Luke is said to be the father of Joseph, while in Matt., I, 16, Jacob was Joseph's father. The explanation of this seeming contradiction is afforded by having recourse to the levirate law among the Jews, which prescribes that when a man dies childless his widow "shall not marry to another; but his brother shall take her, and raise up seed for his brother" (Deuteronomy 25:5). The child, therefore, of the second marriage is legally the child of the first (Deuteronomy 25:6). Heli having died childless, his widow became the wife of his brother Jacob, and Joseph was the offspring of the marriage, by nature the son of Jacob, but legally the son of Heli. It is likely that Matt. gives the natural, and Luke the legal descent

The second seeming contradiction you mentioned is this.

Is Jesus equal to or lesser than god?
JOH 10:30 I and my Father are one.
JOH 14:28 Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I.

I believe I already answered that question but I will answer it again.

Jesus is fully God

An early Christian profession of faith exclaims that "Jesus Christ is Lord" (Romans 10:9). Here are two truths about Jesus. First, he is Christ, a title equivalent to the Hebrew term Messiah, meaning "the anointed one." By calling him Christ, early Christians acknowledged that Jesus is greater than any human being (see Mark 8:27-30) and that he is the one sent by God to rescue us.

Second, though in Jewish thought the Messiah might be a great man, Christians called Jesus "Lord" (kyrios in Greek). They used this word in their translations of the Old Testament for God's personal name (YHWH in Hebrew). Although kyrios could be used to mean master or sir, Jews and Christians refused to acknowledge the Roman emperor as "the Lord" (in an absolute sense, which is the way the emperor wanted it) because only God was "the Lord." Yet Jesus was called Lord, even the Lord.

In Philippians 2, Jesus is said to be "in very nature God" (verse 6); and is to be worshiped as Lord: "At the name of Jesus every knee should bow ... and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord" (verses 10-11). This statement paraphrases Isaiah 45:23, where God speaks of himself. God alone is to be worshiped, and when Christians call Jesus Lord, they proclaim him to be God.

Jesus is fully human

The New Testament also insists that Jesus is in every sense a human being, yet without sin (Hebrews 4:15). John wrote, "The Word became flesh" (John 1:14), and in his epistles John attacked denials of Jesus' humanity as demonic heresy (1 John 4:1-3; 2 John 7-11).

Throughout the Gospels we see Jesus operating within the confines of human flesh. He was born of a woman and grew up in a human family. He often got tired, and he hungered. At the end of his life, suffering the excruciating pain of crucifixion, he cried out in a human way, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" (Matthew 27:46).

That Jesus Christ is fully human is of great importance to us. This truth tells us that in order to save us, God became one of us. To do so he did not abandon his divinity (only God can save us), but he fully clothed himself with humanity.

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