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Mark D. Roberts

Mark D. Roberts

Jesus: Was Jesus Divine? Archives

Was Jesus Divine? Early Christian Perspectives – Interim Conclusions (Part 4)

posted by Mark D. Roberts

In my last post I summarized several key factors in the early Christian discovery of the deity of Jesus. These were: Jesus Spoke with God’s Own AuthorityJesus Forgave Sins as if He Were GodJesus Assumed the Character of Divine WisdomJesus […]

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Was Jesus Divine? Early Christian Perspectives – Interim Conclusions (Part 3)

posted by Mark D. Roberts

In my last post, I argued that the resurrection of Jesus, though not proving that he was God, did vindicate him and his ministry. Through the lens of Easter, the early Christians began to see things about Jesus that they […]

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Was Jesus Divine? Early Christian Perspectives – Interim Conclusions (Part 2)

posted by Mark D. Roberts

No matter how Jesus lived, no matter what he said or did, if he had simply died on a Roman cross like so many other Jews in the first century A.D., then that would have been the sad ending to […]

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Was Jesus Divine? Early Christian Perspectives – Interim Conclusions (Part 1)

posted by Mark D. Roberts

After spilling ample ink (well, pixels) on the subject “Was Jesus Divine? Early Christian Perspectives,” I’m finally ready to begin to draw some interim conclusions. I call these “interim” conclusions because I believe that what I’m proposing here is not […]

Jesus the Son (Part 2)

posted by Mark D. Roberts

Yesterday I began looking at how Jesus referred to himself as simply “the Son” in relationship to God, whom he called “Father.” Jesus’ language suggested an unprecedented intimacy with God. Such intimacy was also implied in the baptism of Jesus. […]

Jesus the Son (Part 1)

posted by Mark D. Roberts

As we have seen, Jesus regularly referred to himself as the “Son of Man.” “Son of God,” on the contrary, appears on Jesus’ lips only twice in all of the gospels (John 5:25; 11:4). Not only did Jesus seem to […]

Jesus, the Unexpected Son of Man (Part 2)

posted by Mark D. Roberts

In yesterday’s post I showed how Jesus startled his disciples by claiming that he, as the Son of Man, would suffer and die. Though Jewish visions of the Son of Man pictured him as receiving honor and glory, Jesus said […]

Jesus, the Unexpected Son of Man (Part 1)

posted by Mark D. Roberts

In my last post I showed how some of what Jesus said about the Son of Man was drawn from Jewish speculation about the future. Even as Jewish visionaries in the time of Jesus looked forward to the coming of […]

The Son of Man in the Judaism of Jesus

posted by Mark D. Roberts

In my last post I began to examine Jesus’ use of the self-designation “Son of Man.” I noted that although this was Jesus’ preferred title for himself, his followers have generally been confused by what Jesus meant when he called […]

Jesus and the Perplexing Son of Man

posted by Mark D. Roberts

In my last post, I noted that Jesus rarely referred to himself as the Son of God. Yet he frequently spoke of himself as the Son of Man. This title, rarely used by Christians today when we speak of Jesus, […]

Jesus as the Son of God

posted by Mark D. Roberts

In my last post I showed how the picture of Jesus in the prologue of John’s Gospel was drawn on the basis of the Jewish figure of divine, yet with a striking innovation. Whereas the Jewish sages envisioned Wisdom as […]

Echoes of Wisdom and the Divinity of Jesus: Part 3

posted by Mark D. Roberts

Let me review briefly what we have seen so far about Wisdom and Jesus before I dive into today’s new material. I began this series with a simple question: Why did Jesus’ followers start thinking that he was, not just […]

Echoes of Wisdom and the Divinity of Jesus (Part 2)

posted by Mark D. Roberts

In my last post I began to examine echoes of Wisdom in the ministry of Jesus. By Wisdom, I mean not the human trait of wise judgment, but the divine characteristic pictured in the Old Testament and other Jewish sources […]

Echoes of Wisdom and the Divinity of Jesus: Part 1

posted by Mark D. Roberts

One of the most influential theological movements in ancient Judaism was what scholars call The Wisdom Tradition. Beginning many centuries before Christ, faithful Jews began to pass along popular wisdom, such as we find in the biblical book of Proverbs. […]

Who is the Savior? Part 2

posted by Mark D. Roberts

In last Friday’s post I began to answer the question of why the earliest Christians came to regard Jesus as divine. I showed how belief that divine salvation came through Jesus led to confessing Jesus as the Savior. Then, given […]

Who is the Savior? Part 1

posted by Mark D. Roberts

So far in this series we’ve looked at historical evidence that shows that some of the earliest Christian spoke of Jesus as Lord, applying to him the very name of Israel’s God. To their Lord they prayed and offered worship. […]

Hear, O Israel! The LORD is One!

posted by Mark D. Roberts

One of the classic Jewish affirmations appears in the sixth chapter of Deuteronomy: “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 […]

The Paradoxical Path to Lordship

posted by Mark D. Roberts

In my last post I examined one of the very oldest bits of evidence for early Christian belief about Jesus. As you may recall, the original Greek text of 1 Corinthians 16:22 contains the Aramaic phrase, marana tha, which means, […]

Maranatha! What Difference Does It Make?

posted by Mark D. Roberts

Sometime in the mid-50s A.D., the Apostle Paul wrote a letter to the church in Corinth. He concluded this epistle in the following way: I, Paul, write this greeting with my own hand. Let anyone be accursed who has no […]

Earliest Christian Belief About Jesus: What Evidence Do We Have?

posted by Mark D. Roberts

In my last post I laid out a popular theory among some scholars for how the early Christians came to think of Jesus as divine. Let me review it briefly. According to this theory, the first followers of Jesus didn’t […]

Popular Theories About Why Early Christians Considered Jesus as Divine: Part 3

posted by Mark D. Roberts

In my last two posts in this series, I examined two theories that seek to explain why the earliest Christians regarded Jesus as divine. I found both of these to be lacking, though both point in a direction that will […]

Popular Theories About Why Early Christians Considered Jesus as Divine: Part 2

posted by Mark D. Roberts

In my last post, I began considering popular theories about why the early Christians considered Jesus to be divine. The first theory pointed to the fact that they thought of Jesus as Messiah and therefore Son of God. But I […]

Popular Theories About Why Early Christians Considered Jesus as Divine (Part 1)

posted by Mark D. Roberts

There are many popular theories about why the earliest Christians considered to Jesus to be divine. You can find these regularly espoused by preachers, teachers, professors of religion, or debunkers of Christianity. As you might be able to tell already, […]

Was Jesus Divine? Early Christian Perspectives – Introduction to the Series

posted by Mark D. Roberts

“I’m okay with Jesus being a great teacher and even somehow a heavenly revealer,” a man once said to me, “but I’m just not into this whole notion of Jesus being God. I have a hard time with that one.” […]

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More blogs to enjoy!!!
Thank you for visiting Mark D. Roberts. This blog is no longer being updated. Please enjoy the archives. Here are some other blogs you may also enjoy: Red Letters with Tom Davis Recent prayer post on Prayables Most Recent Inspiration ...

posted 2:09:11pm Aug. 27, 2012 | read full post »

Why Did Jesus Have to Die? Conclusions
In this series on the death of Jesus, I have presented four different perspectives on why Jesus had to die: Roman, Jewish, Jesus’, and Early Christian. I believe that each of these points of view has merit, and that we cannot fully understand ...

posted 2:47:39am Apr. 11, 2011 | read full post »

Sunday Inspiration from the High Calling
Can We Find God in the City? Psalm 48:1-14 Go, inspect the city of Jerusalem. Walk around and count the many towers. Take note of the fortified walls, and tour all the citadels, that you may describe them to future generations. For that ...

posted 2:05:51am Apr. 10, 2011 | read full post »

Why Did Jesus Have to Die? The Perspective of the First Christians, Part 3
An Act and Symbol of Love Perhaps one of the most startling of the early Christian interpretations of the cross was that it was all about love. It’s easy in our day, when crosses are religious symbols, attractive ornaments, and trendy ...

posted 2:41:47am Apr. 08, 2011 | read full post »

Why Did Jesus Have to Die? The Perspective of the First Christians, Part 2
The Means of Reconciliation In my last post, I examined one of the very earliest Christian statements of the purpose of Jesus’ death. According to the tradition encapsulated in 1 Corinthians 15, Jesus died “for our sins in accordance with ...

posted 2:30:03am Apr. 07, 2011 | read full post »

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