An Introduction To The Una Natura Project

From time to time I like to deal with controversial or at least potentially controversial questions about doctrine relating to the Church of God culture I am a part of.  Although I do not chime in on every debate, and there are some I particularly avoid, on those debates where I think that there are genuine questions that need to be puzzled out or dealt with or addressed, such as was the case with the investigation of the subordination of Christ to the Father and what that means [1], I will comment on the relevant biblical and nonbiblical literature as well as some of the questions that are in dispute.  After all, it is important to have a clear understanding of what we are dealing with when it comes to doctrine, and there are aspects of our beliefs that are both very important and very tricky to explain.

I wish to undertake this approach again with a series of posts–I do not yet know how long the series will be–on the nature of Jesus Christ.  Obviously, as Jesus Christ is our Lord and Savior and elder brother, the question of his nature is something that is of deep importance to us.  During the first few centuries of Christianity, there was a long-running debate about the nature of Christ, and a variety of positions were made concerning those issues, which had some very serious divisions in the Church of God, especially that within the East.  This division had some serious political as well as religious consequences in that the areas of Egypt and Syria were heavily monophysite during the sixth and centuries AD, and their rule by Chalcedonian Byzantine rulers led to estrangement that led them (unwisely) to prefer the rule of Muslims to the rule by other Christians with whom they had lengthy and negative relationships.  Let us be plain, the bad blood that exists between different sorts of Christians over the nature of Christ was at least partly responsible for the rise of Islam.  Let that thought sink in as we wade into this contentious subject.

What I would like to do in this series is somewhat complicated.   For one, I wish to view the Monophysite controversy over the nature of Christ in a historical perspective, examining its historical significance to the Byzantine Empire and its cohesion as well as the writers and thinkers that engaged in the struggle over the nature of Christ in the first few centuries of Christendom.  In addition to that I would like to examine the biblical case in dealing with the nature of Christ and wrestle with the thorny but essential question of what we mean by the nature of Christ in terms of human and divine and what we view as human nature in the whole dispute over the supposed human nature or the absence thereof of Jesus Christ.  At that point, once we wade through the somewhat easy thicket of the historical context of the question of Christ’s nature(s), and the vastly more difficult question of definitions and the Biblical record, we can examine what relevance the nature of Christ has for us today.  The posts for this series are below:

Introduction:

Q & A About The One Nature Of Christ [2]

A Brief History Of The Dispute:

 

Nature And Form:

What Do We Mean By Nature Anyway? [3]
It Has Not Yet Been Revealed What We Will Be [4]
Able To Be Tempted:  Part One [5]
Able To Be Tempted:  Part Two [6]
Able To Be Tempted:  Part Three [7]

Doctrinal Implications:

Jesus Christ As High Priest [8]
A.A. Luce And The Problem Of Definitions [9]
Mysteries Of The Bible:  What Does The Nature Of Christ Have To Do With The Virgin Mary? [10]
Avoiding Total Depravity [11]

Lit Review:

Book Review:  Monophytism Past And Present [12]

[1] See, for example:

https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2018/03/21/a-defense-of-origens-orthodox-subordinationism/

https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2016/05/04/on-obedience-and-subordination-in-thomas-a-kempis-imitatio-christi/

https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2016/04/30/what-makes-c-s-lewis-view-of-subordinationism-orthodox/

https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2016/04/22/the-subordination-of-jesus-christ-to-god-the-father-in-c-s-lewis-the-four-loves/

https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2016/04/26/comparative-evaluations-of-essentially-different-excellencies-subordinationism-in-c-s-lewis-discarded-image/

https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2016/04/13/c-s-lewis-an-acceptable-place-for-orthodox-subordinationism/

https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2016/04/05/some-preliminary-notes-for-a-defense-of-origen-on-the-biblical-doctrine-of-subordinationism/

[2] https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2018/06/02/q-a-about-the-one-nature-of-christ/

[3] https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2018/06/03/what-do-we-mean-by-nature-anyway/

[4] https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2018/06/04/it-has-not-yet-been-revealed-what-we-shall-be/

[5] https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2018/06/05/able-to-be-tempted-part-one/

[6] https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2018/06/06/able-to-be-tempted-part-two/

[7] https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2018/06/07/able-to-be-tempted-part-three/

[8] https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2018/06/08/the-nature-of-jesus-christ-as-high-priest/

[9] https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2018/06/09/a-a-luce-and-the-problem-of-definitions/

[10] https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2018/06/11/mysteries-of-the-bible-what-does-the-nature-of-christ-have-to-do-with-the-virgin-mary/

[11] https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2018/06/12/avoiding-total-depravity/

[12] https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2018/06/28/book-review-monophysitism-past-and-present-a-study-in-christology/

About nathanalbright

I'm a person with diverse interests who loves to read. If you want to know something about me, just ask.
This entry was posted in Bible, Christianity, History, Musings and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to An Introduction To The Una Natura Project

  1. Pingback: Book Review: The Nature Of Christ | Edge Induced Cohesion

  2. Pingback: Book Review: The Two Natures In The Child Of God | Edge Induced Cohesion

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