CATECHESIS ON THE NATURE AND PERSON OF JESUS CHRIST: THE GOD WHO DIED FOR ALL
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1. Our Lord Jesus Christ is one of the Holy Trinity. He is the only begotten Son of God (cf. John 3:16). He is the Divine Logos who became man. St John started his Gospel with the reality of Incarnation: “In the beginning was the Word… and the Word was God. And the Word was made flesh…”(John 1:1,14). He is God manifested in the flesh (cf. 1Tim. 3:16).

2. The Incarnation of Christ is not a conversion of Godhead into flesh but assumption of manhood by God. Christ did not cease to be God yet truly assumed humanity. Apostle Paul wrote: “For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form…”(Col. 2:9). Christ while remaining to be true God became true man too.

3. We read in the Scriptures that Jesus is both the Son of God and Mary’s son. He is God of the essence of the Father [God] and man of the essence of His mother, the Blessed Virgin Mary (cf. Athanasian Creed.) Christ is not part God and part man, rather fully Divine and fully human.

4. Christ’s two natures-God and man-are substantially united in the one Divine Person. This hypostatic union means that “God is man” and “man is God” in the single hypostasis of the Incarnate Logos. The Second Council of Constantinople confessed that “there is but one hypostasis [or person], which is our Lord Jesus Christ, one of the Trinity.”

5. The two natures of Christ are inseparably united in the one person of Christ. There is no other subject or suppositum that can be attributed all Christ’s actions except the single Divine Person. In the Creed we confess that who although He is God and man, yet He is not two but one Christ (cf. Athanasian Creed).

6. “Actiones sunt suppositorum.” In subsistent entities, actions pertain to their respective subjects or supposita. If rational it belongs to person which is called an intelligent suppositum (suppositum naturae rationalis). Following this dictum, the proper subject of anything that pertains to both natures of Christ is the one hypostasis or Person of Word Incarnate.

7. In Christ, there is only one hypostasis or person. That’s why all Christ’s actions should be attributed to the Divine Person [God the Son] as its proper subject. Hence, it is an orthodox expression of the Catholic faith to say that “God was born”, “God was tempted”, “God suffered”, and “God died” for reason of the assumed human nature.
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8. Tertullian posed these questions against Marcion: “But answer me at once, you that murder truth: Was not God really crucified? And, having been really crucified, did He not really die? And, having indeed really died, did He not really rise again?” (cf. On the Flesh of Christ, Ch. 4)
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9. The Council of Ephesus solemnly declared: “Whosoever shall not recognize that the Word of God suffered in the flesh, that he was crucified in the flesh, and that likewise in that same flesh he tasted death and that he has become the first-begotten of the dead, for, as he is God, he is the life and it is he that gives life: let him be anathema.”
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10. On the cross, God really experienced death for the Redemption of mankind. “This is the truth and everyone should accept it. We work hard and suffer much in order that people will believe it, for our hope is in the living God who died for all, and particularly for those who have accepted his salvation” (1Tim. 4:9-10, TLB).
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–Lay Apologist