Successfully reported this slideshow.
We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime.



Published on

Published in: Spiritual
  • Be the first to comment


  1. 1. Who is Jesus?
  2. 2. Introduction Biblical Christology Conciliar Christology Contemporary Christology
  3. 3.  The Question of Relevance: Why Important? Jesus is God’s response to our deepest human longings.
  4. 4. 1. Christology “From Above” An approach which begins with the pre-existent Word who is in heaven/from eternity, and who descends into human history, becoming incarnate in Jesus Focal point: Incarnation Starting point: Church’s dogma
  5. 5. 2. Christology “From Below” An approach which begins with the human Jesus of Nazareth, and traces his story from birth to mission, culminating on his death and resurrection Focal point: Resurrection Starting point: Jesus of history (esp. as contained in biblical accounts
  6. 6.  over/exclusive emphasis on “From Above” may result to a denial of Christ’s humanity (e.g. docetism – physicality, crucifixion, death were all illusion)  over/exclusive emphasis on “From Below” may result on a rejection of Jesus’ divinity (Arianism – Jesus as the highest creature, subordinate to the Father)
  7. 7. Preference for the “From Below” Approach: Why? - Helps us appreciate the full humanity of Jesus and hence his solidarity with us - Inspires discipleship in the context of a world which identifies more with stories rather than dogmas
  8. 8.  The Gospels As Principal Source for the Life and Teaching of Jesus  Other historical sources are scarce and authenticity is suspect  Mark: between 60 – 70 AD  Matthew, Luke (Acts): 80 AD  John (Revelation): 90 AD  Synoptic Gospels – Gk syn + optic meaning “seen together”; taken from same source(s)
  9. 9.  The Nature of the Gospels: Are they strictly historical accounts?  “testimonies of faith” = historical basis + faith interpretation  not histories or biography in the modern sense  stages in the development of the Gospel tradition: words and deeds of Jesus → the preaching of the apostles → writing of the gospels
  10. 10. “basileia tou theou”  best translated as “reign of God”: dynamic, not static; a situation/event, not a place  “a situation wherein the will of God is perfectly upheld”  eschatological tension: both present and future (“already but not yet”)  It is present in the person and ministry of Jesus but its definitive form is yet to come.
  11. 11. Problem: How to understand the meaning of the parables (which are many and varied)? John Dominic Crossan  suggests a basic and helpful framework to approach the study of the parables  three-fold pattern in most, if not, all of the parables: advent, reversal, and action  two parables in Matthew as paradigmatic of this pattern: hidden treasure, pearl of great price (Mt 13:44-46)
  12. 12.  Advent - the Reign of God is coming as a gift; something unprecedented, something beyond expectations is coming or is found which is a cause of great joy  Reversal - the encounter with the Reign of God turns the values of the world upside down; change in outlook and priorities  Action - the Reign of God is not a mere information; calling for a response/transformative action
  13. 13. o Mt 13:44-46 44 "The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up; then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. 45 "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls, 46 who, on finding one pearl of great value, went and sold all that he had and bought it.
  14. 14.  In some parables, the element of advent/discovery is the focus: e.g. lost sheep, lost coin  In other parables, the element of reversal/change is the focus: e.g. rich man and Lazarus (sin as omission), prodigal son (mercy and forgiveness)  Still in others, the emphasis is on the element of action/new praxis: talents, unmerciful servant
  15. 15.  sickness or infirmity was attributed to demonic power and sin  healings show that the power of evil over human beings is broken  The miracles may be understood as symbolic anticipations and foretastes of what the fulfillment of the Reign of God will bring to the lives of people: holiness, healing, liberation, reconciliation, a new unity and integration of life or wholeness.
  16. 16.  importance of meals in the ministry of Jesus; frequency  Cf. Mt 11: 18-19 18 For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, 'He has a demon'; 19 the Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, 'Look, a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!' Yet wisdom is vindicated by her deeds.
  17. 17.  in the Middle Eastern culture even today, to share a meal is a sign of communion  in Judaism of Jesus’ day, it signified fellowship with God  a proclamation of forgiveness of sins in deeds; in God’s reign everyone is welcome; we are all brothers and sisters in the family of God
  18. 18.  cf. Ben Meyer, The Aims of Jesus (London: SCM Press, 1979), 159-161 Jesus’ openness to sinners did not mean that he submitted passively to or tolerated sin. He reversed the normal pattern – conversion then communion. His offer of communion with sinners triggered repentance – “conversion flowered from communion”.
  19. 19. The Death of Jesus  The meaning of the cross Today, no longer seen as a scandal, as instrument of torture and humiliation More an article of jewelry, a fashion accessory, mark of episcopal authority, an ornament Sometimes misunderstood as promoting passive acceptance of suffering and injustice
  20. 20. The Death of Jesus 1. Cross as salvific - (scholastics) by the cross Jesus has redeemed the world 2. Cross as sign of misinterpretation – (Bultmann) Jesus’ religious message was misinterpreted as a threat to Roman rule; Jesus’ purposes were misunderstood 3. Cross as not salvific or redemptive – (Schillebeeckx) a rejection of Jesus; not willed but permitted by God; death as negativity that God overcomes by the resurrection
  21. 21. The Death of Jesus  International Theological Commission 1979: “A death undergone in a purely passive manner could not be a ‘Christological’ saving event. It must be… the willed consequence of the obedience and love of Jesus…”  What is salvific is the entire Christ-event, the perfect life of obedience of Jesus which culminated in the cross and vindicated in the resurrection.
  22. 22. The Resurrection of Jesus  Importance and centrality 1. CCC 638: the crowing truth of our faith, regarded as central truth by first Christian communities 2. 1 Cor 15:14-17: without the resurrection, in vain is our preaching and faith 3. Source of hope for us; our own promise of eternal life  Origin/Basis: empty tomb tradition + resurrection appearances
  23. 23.  Transition in Language: From Stories to Concepts (hypostasis, substantia, homoousios, phusis, prosopon, persona)  Challenge when church expanded: how to express the faith in a manner understandable to a new audience  From biblical to philosophical language: difficult but necessary
  24. 24.  Nicea (325) - issue: divinity of Christ - Arius: Jesus as greatest, most perfect creature - Church: Jesus is “homoousius” (of the same substance) with the Father, “true God from true God, begotten not made, one in being...” - Hence, not subordinate but equal to the Father
  25. 25.  Constantinople (381) - issue: full humanity of Christ - Appolinarius of Laodicea: Logos took the place of the rational soul in Christ hence Christ is not fully human because he does not have a rational soul - Church: Jesus had a human soul
  26. 26.  Ephesus (431) - issue: two natures but one person - Nestorius: a human Jesus, “indwelt… as in a temple” by the divine Christ, hence two persons (the human as ‘shell’ of the divine person); Mary as the mother of Jesus but not the mother of God - Church: the two natures (divine and human) are united in the one person of Christ; Mary as Theotokos
  27. 27.  Chalcedon (451) - issue: distinction of the two natures of Christ - Eutyches: monophysitism – the union of the divine and human natures in Christ result in only one divine nature; the human is absorbed by the divine - Church: the human and divine natures are united “without confusion, without change” and “without division, without separation”
  28. 28. Some Christological issues today:  Humanity and Knowledge: What sort of knowledge did Jesus possess?  Humanity and Sinlessness: Without concupiscence, what was it like for Jesus to be tempted?  Ecological Crisis: What does our faith in the incarnation and resurrection say about environmental issues?  World Religions: Is Jesus the savior of non- Christians as well?