Friday, September 1, 2017

“The study on teachings of Apollinarianism on Humanity of Christ and Theological




Outline:
Topic: The study on teachings of Apollinarianism on Humanity of Christ and Theological evaluation.
INTRODUCTION
1. APOLLINARIANISM
 1.1 Teachings of Apollinarianism
 1.2 Reason for this teachings
 1.3 Problems in his teachings
2. MEANING AND IMPROTANCE OF HUMANITY OF CHRIST
3. HUMANITY OF CHRIST
 3.1 Virgin Birth
 3.2 Essential Nature of Humanity of Christ
 3.3 Scriptural proofs for the Real humanity of Christ
4. EVALUATION
CONCLUSION





Introduction:
In this research I am going to deal with the topic “The study on teachings of Apollinarianism on Humanity of Christ and Theological evaluation” which deals with the teachings of Apollinarianism against Humanity of Christ, which also contradict to Bible and to whole doctrine of Christology. In this paper I also show the reasons for this teachings and problems with these teachings. And I also prove that Jesus had true complete human nature and divine nature in one person on the basis of Biblical proofs.
1. Apollinarianism
Early in the life of the church many heresies evolved in careful understanding of humanity of Christ, such as Docetism and Apollinarianism. Docetism is a denial of the reality of humanity of Christ. Apollinarianism, by contrast is a truncation (condensation) of Jesus’ humanity. Jesus took human form but not all natures or incomplete.
1.1 Teachings of Apollinarianism
Apollinarius was bishop of Laodicea from about 370 to 392 A.D. Apollinarius was a close friend and associate of Athanasius, and had been one of the leading champions of orthodox Christology against Arianism at the Council of Nicea. However, the reaction against heresy became an overreaction. Apollinarius was very concerned to maintain the unity of the Son, Jesus Christ. Apollinarius reasoned that if Jesus had two complete natures, he must have had a human “nous” (soul, mind, reason) as well as a divine “nous”. Apollinarius thought this duality was absurd or meaningless. So, Apollinarius taught that Christ had a true body and soul but the spirit in man was replaced in Christ by the divine pre-existent logos. The logos as the divine actively dominated the passive element than the body and soul, in the person of Christ. So Jesus had a human body and a human ‘soul’ but not a human ‘spirit’. He also held that Christ had a body, but that the body was somehow so sublimated as to be just as a human body. Apollinaris reduced the human nature of Christ of something less than human.
1.2 Reasons for this teachings
Apollinaris taught that the divine pre-existent Logos took the place of the ‘spirit’ in the man Jesus, so Jesus had a human body and a human ‘soul’ but not a human ‘spirit’. The reasons for this teachings that first, Apollinaris believed the spirit was the seat of sin; therefore, to remove any possibility of sin from Christ, Apollinaris felt he had to deny the humanity of Jesus Spirit. 
Second reason is that, Apollinarius felt that in one being, Christ, two complete and contrasting natures could not exist, namely, the divine, eternal, unchangeable, and perfect, and the human, temporal, corruptible, finite and imperfect. Along with many others, he held each human being to be to be composed of body, soul, and mind or reason, the last being what distinguishes man from the lower animals. If the two natures were both in Jesus, the latter would really have in him two beings. Moreover, the human side of Jesus might sin, much as the extreme Arians declared. Mainly Apollinaris taught that if Jesus has the complete human nature then he might sin because human nature is sin. So he denied the complete human nature of Christ.
1.3 Problems in his teachings:
The problem with Apollinaris’s view was that while solving the deity of Christ, he denied the genuine humanity of Christ. In Apollinaris’s teaching Jesus was less than fully human. He stressed the deity of Christ but minimized His true manhood, which makes man’s salvation impossible. But these views of Apollinaris were rejected by the leaders of the church, who realized that it was not just or human body that needed salvation and needed to be represented by Christ in his redemptive work, but our human minds and spirits, which needs Christ had to be fully and truly man if he was to save us (Heb 2:17). So Apollinarianism was rejected by several church councils, from the Council of Alexandria in A.D 362 to the Council of Constantinople in A.D. 381.
2. Meaning and Importance of Humanity of Christ:
The doctrine of the humanity of Christ is equally important as the doctrine of the deity of Christ. Jesus had to be a man if He was to represent or to save fallen humanity. There is a basic problem of spiritual and moral gap between God and us, created human sin. We are unable to counter our sin by our own moral effort, to elevate ourselves to the level of God. If we are to have fellowship with God, we have to be united with him in some other way. This has been accomplished by the incarnation, in which deity and humanity were united in one person. If, Jesus was not really one of us, humanity has not been united with deity, and we cannot be saved. Then the death on the cross was an illusion and he cannot affect the kind of intercession that a priest must make on behalf of those whom he represents. Then experiencing all of the temptations and trials are not real and he cannot understand and empathize with us in our struggles as humans.
3. Humanity of Christ
Humanity of Christ deals mainly with Virgin birth of Christ, His essential human natures and emotions and also His sinlessness.
3.1 Virgin Birth of Jesus
When we speak of the humanity of Christ it is appropriate to begin with a consideration of the virgin birth of Christ. Scripture clearly asserts that Jesus was conceived in the womb of his mother Mary by a miraculous work of the Holy Spirit and without human father (Matt 1:18, Luke 1:35; 3:23, Isaiah 7:14). The doctrinal importance of the virgin birth is seen in at least three areas. It shows that salvation ultimately must come from the Lord, as God had promised that the “seed” of the woman will destroy serpent (Gen 3:15). The virgin birth of Christ is an unmistakable reminder that salvation can never come through human effort, but must be the work of God himself. The virgin birth made possible the uniting of full deity and full humanity in one person. There are no other ways to unite Jesus two natures instead virgin birth. The virgin birth also makes possible Christ’s true humanity without inherited sin “therefore the child to be born will be called holy” (Luke 1:35). By this Jesus was fully human yet did not share inherited sin from Adam. Thus virgin birth shows unity of both fully human and fully deity of Jesus.  .
3.2 Essential Nature of Humanity of Christ
Jesus had a true body of Flesh and Blood: The fact that Jesus had a human body just like our human bodies is seen in many passages of Scripture. He was born just as all human babies are born (Luke 2:7). He grew through childhood to adulthood just as other children grow. (Luke 2:40). Later in his life He was recognizable as a Jew (John 4:9) and as the carpenter who had brothers and sisters (Matt 13:55). Jesus became was “tired” just as we do. (John 4:6). He became thirsty, “I thirst” (John 19:28). After he had fasted for forty days in the wilderness, Jesus was “hungry” (Matt. 4:2) and “weak” (Matt 4:11). He experienced the pain of the scourging (John 19:1), the horror of crucifixion (John 19:18), and on the cross he thirsted as man (John 19:28). These elements emphasis His true humanity.
Jesus Had a Normal development: Luke 2:52 describes Jesus’ development in four areas: mental, physical, spiritual and social. He continued to develop in His knowledge to things, He grew in His physical body, He developed in His spiritual awareness, and He developed in His social relationships with others (Heb 5:8).
Jesus has a Human Soul and Spirit: Jesus was a complete human being, having a body, soul, and spirit (Luke 23:49, Mk 2:8; 8:12, John 13:21). Before the cross, Jesus was troubled in His soul at the expectation of the cross (John 12:27). In John 11:33 describes that Jesus had wept with sorrow and deeply moved in spirit at the death of Lazarus. He ultimately died and He gave up His spirit (John 19:30).
He had Human names:
Jesus was called as the “son of David”, indicating He was a descendant of King David (Matt 1:1). He was also called Jesus (Matt 1:21), the equivalent of the Old Testament name Joshua which means “Yahweh saves”. He was referred to as a “Man” (Matt 4:23-25, Matt: 13:55). Paul indicated a future day when the world would be judged by a “Man” (Acts 17:31).
3.3 Scriptural proofs for the Real humanity of Christ
Scripture clearly affirms the real humanity of Christ in different places. Jesus had a human birth (Matt 1:18-23; 2:11; Luke 1:30-33; Gal 4:4, Rom 1:3, Matt 1:1, Rom 9:5, Heb 7:14). He had human names and titles like Jesus (Matt 1:21-23), Son of David (Matt 1:1; 9:27, 12:23, 20:30), the Mediator (1 Tim 2:5). He had human nature having spirit, soul and body (1Thess 5:23, Heb 4:12). He had human emotions like us (John 4:6, John 4:7, 19:28, Matt 8:24). He suffered human death by laying on Himself all or sins and its wages that is death (1 Peter 2:24, Gen 2:17, Heb 9:27, Luke 23:33). He was raised from the dead and still possesses that virgin-born, crucified, buried physical body (Luke 24:39).Scripture clearly affirms that Jesus has human body with all human natures, emotions, qualities but except sin.
Evaluation:
Apollinaris taught that Jesus had a human body and a human ‘soul’ but not a human ‘spirit’, which was replaced by the divine pre-existent Logos in the man Jesus. He taught this teaching because Jesus was sinless or Holy and he cannot take full human nature which is sinful, and he also believed that the two natures Divine (Holy) and human (Unholy) cannot be united. He more focused or concerned about the Divine nature of Jesus denying the virgin birth of Jesus and his sinlessness. Bible clearly affirms that Jesus was born by virgin birth which makes Jesus sinless and also union of both human and divine natures in Jesus (Matt 1:18-23; 2:11; Luke 1:30-33; Gal 4:4). Bible also affirms that Jesus had human natures (1Thess 5:23, Heb 4:12), human body (Rom 1:3, Matt 1:1, Rom 9:5, Heb 7:14), human development (Luke 1:52), human emotions (John 4:6, John 4:7, 19:28, Matt 8:24), human mind (Luke 1:26), human spirit (Jn 11:33), human death but without sinless (Luke 1:35, Mark 1:24, Lk 4:34, Matt 3:15-17, 11 Corinth 5:21, Heb 4:15). Apollinarius teaching was correct in saying Jesus is divine but his teachings was totally contradict to Bible that Jesus was not human. If Jesus was not fully human and fully divine then salvation is impossible to us and there is no use of Christ death or atonement for us. So I evaluate that the teachings of Apollinarius are contradict according to Bible which makes salvation impossible.
Conclusion:
From this research I want to conclude that Jesus is fully human and fully divine in one person with all human natures, characters and, all divine attributes, natures and characters but without sin. Jesus is not incomplete but fully complete with both natures human and divine. Apollinarius tried to solve the problems but in reaction he created a big problem by denying Jesus humanity. But Bible clearly affirms that Jesus is fully human and fully divine yet without sinless. Only because of His sinlessness and union of both natures we all are saved by His death. Even though many heresies disagree but the standard and unchangeable truth is Jesus is both divine and human.  
Bibliography:
Cairns, Earle E. Christianity through the Centuries. Grand Rapids:  Zondervan, 1996.
Conner, Kevin J. The foundations of Christian Doctrine. England: Sovereign World      International, 1980.
Erickson, Millard J. Introducing Christian Doctrine. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2001.
Enns, Paul. The Moody Handbook of Theology. Hyderabad: Authentic, 2008.
Gruden, Wayne. Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine. Andhra Pradesh:    Secunderabad, 2003.
Latourette, Kenneth Scott.  A History of Christianity. New York: Haper & Brothers Publishers,  1953.

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