Ask Away Podcast

Is Jesus Who He Said He Is?

Feb 06, 2019

Did God create Jesus? What historical evidence is there for Jesus’ existence? If Jesus was fully human and fully God at the same time, then why didn’t his human nature cause him to sin? Drs. Jo and Vince Vitale answer questions this week on how we can know Jesus was really who he said he was.

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Vince Vitale - @VinceRVitale
Jo Vitale - @Joanna_Vitale
Michael Davis - @mdav1979


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Transcription



Note: Ask Away is produced to be heard, not read. We strongly encourage you to listen to the audio. Transcripts are generated using a combination of speech recognition software and human transcribers, and may contain errors. Please check the corresponding audio before quoting in print.

Michael Davis: Hello, and welcome to another episode of Ask Away with Vince and Jo Vitale. I'm your host, Michael Davis.

From the early church to this very day, confusion over who Jesus is and his relationship within the trinity has dogged believers and unbelievers alike.

Far from being of secondary importance, understanding who Jesus is and what he has done for sinners is an essential part of the faith. Believing in the real Jesus and not some made up one is the difference between saving faith and a false one, but how are we to reconcile Jesus' full humanity and his full divinity, and how does this fit within the trinity? For that matter, how do we know that he was who he really said he was?

But before we start, Vince, can you tell our listeners a little bit about RZIM and why they should prayerfully consider supporting RZIM by visiting RZIM.org and clicking donate.

Vince Vitale: Sure, Michael. One of the greatest blessings in being part of this ministry is that we do have a team of supporters all around the world who are praying for us and who are praying for the mission, and there's an incredible sense of unity and purpose in that, and we know it makes a concrete, practical difference in our lives, in our family lives, and when we're on the front lines in terms of ministry as well.

Many people don't realize the way RZIM has expanded and the way God is working through it. We're actually now a team of over 80 speakers in many countries all around the world, and we're reaching the next generation. We're reaching people in spheres of influence in particular, and the ripple effects of that are quite remarkable.

So if you're someone who's passionate about reaching people with the gospel of Jesus Christ, about taking their questions seriously but also about getting to that point where you're actually inviting them into eternal relationship with Jesus. That's what we are absolutely called to. It's what we're absolutely passionate about, and we are seeing God work in people's lives in utterly transformative ways. It would mean so much to us, and we hope it would be a great blessing to you as well if you would come alongside us in that mission.

Michael Davis: Okay, let's get to our first question. This question is from Maureen. Psalm 2:7 says, "I will tell of the decree, the Lord said to me, 'You are my son, today I have begotten you.'" How could God the Father create Jesus? I thought God the Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit weren't created but always existed?

Vince Vitale: Thanks for that, Maureen. It is that word begot or begotten. It can be confusing. I also think of John 3:16 here. So many people have heard this word: "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son." Just a first thing to note as we start to get into this. Before we get to the potential problem raised in this idea of begetting and whether or not that means that the Son was created, which could be problematic, it's also worth noting what this positively affirms about Jesus.

C.S. Lewis wrote this in Mere Christianity: he said, "To beget is to become the father of. To create is to make." The difference is this, he said, "When you beget, you beget something of the same kind as yourself. A man begets human babies. A beaver begets little beavers, and a bird begets eggs, which turn into little birds, but when you make, you make something of a different kind from yourself. A bird makes a nest, a beaver builds a dam, a man makes a wireless set." That's what Lewis said, and his point was that when God begets, he begets something of the same kind as himself. In other words, something divine. So what God creates is not God, but what God begets is God. So the first thing to notice here is that in using this word beget in reference to Jesus, we actually have a striking affirmation that Jesus is God himself.

Jo Vitale: It's also worth noting, because you're quoting Psalm 2 here, and of course Psalm 2 is originally given in a different context, so Psalm 2 is a psalm of enthronement. It was the kind of psalm that would be used on the day when someone is made king in ancient Israel, and so what's being used here, in the original meaning of the psalm, is the kind of figurative language that is at that point when you become king that you become the closest thing to God's representative on earth, and therefore it was spoken of in the language of sonship in the Old Testament.

Now what happens is that the New Testament writers, once they encountered Jesus, they understand this Psalm to be fulfilled in a greater and deeper and more prophetic way in the New Testament. So they say, not only was this referring to the king at the time, but, actually, this is also talking about the sonship of Jesus Christ in a much deeper way. But we need to bear in mind, as is often the case with Old Testament prophecy that is then put out more fully in the New Testament, there's the original meaning and then there's how it refers to Jesus. So, when it comes to Jesus, we really need to interpret this word "begotten" in the context of how he's spoken about in the New Testament. Vince already mentioned John 3:16. We could also look at John 1, where it talks about, "The world was made flesh and dwelt among us. We beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father."

Vince has already said it in a way, but actually I think, Maureen, in the way that you've asked your question, it actually conflates the idea of created and begotten in a way where, actually, these are two different things, and I think they're intentionally different. And I think it's very significant that actually the New Testament never talks about God the Father as creating Jesus, but actually rather when it talks about Jesus, he's always referred to as the begotten Son. It's interesting that he's the only begotten Son, because it immediately singles him out as distinctive from anything else. He's one of a kind. Nobody else can claim that they're begotten of God in the way that Jesus is begotten of God. So then it begs the question, "Does begotten necessarily imply that you have a beginning?" Created things have beginnings. Do begotten things always have beginnings?

Vince Vitale: And the Greek word that's translated as only begotten is "monogenes." Now that word is sometimes translated "only begotten." It's sometimes translated "only." It's sometimes translated "one and only," and understanding the meaning of this word I think is quite helpful.

A Jehovah's Witness, for example, might try to use this phrase only begotten and say, "Look, this proves that Jesus Christ isn't God because if Jesus is begotten, then that means that he was created, and therefore he had a beginning in time, and therefore he's not eternal, and therefore he's not God." But looking at the actual meaning of the Greek word here is helpful as Jo has said, this word means to be one of a kind. It means to be unique or to be the only one in a certain class. And we can see that for instance, by turning to Hebrews 11.

There, the Biblical writer refers to Isaac as Abraham's, you could translate it, the KJV translates it, only begotten son. By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac, and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son. But not we know that Isaac was not literally Abraham's only son. He had Ishmael, and he had Ishmael before Isaac, but Isaac was the only son he had by Sarah. He was the only son of the covenant. He was one of a kind. He was unique with respect to the purposes of God. When we understand it in the context of that meaning, then when we say that Jesus, as the son of God, is the only begotten Son, we don't have to be saying anything which implies that Jesus has a beginning but rather that Jesus is one of a kind. Those root words of mono and genos. One and then species or kind. One of a kind.

Jo Vitale: I think the context also helps us here. For example, when John in John chapter 1 talks about Jesus as the only begotten Son, he's already said, "In the beginning was the word." It's not that Jesus had a beginning, but before the beginning was, Jesus was already there. Also in the New Testament, it talks about all things being created through him, and without him nothing was made that has been made. So the point being not only is Jesus not created but nothing else can be created without him being part of the process. Jesus also speaks of the glory which I had with you, speaking to God the Father, before the world was. Basically implying before anything else came to be, Jesus was already there. So actually when you read begotten in the context of the New Testament, there's an eternality to Jesus that is clearly and explicitly upheld throughout the whole of the New Testament.

I think it's really just a question of language, a language confusion that we mix up begotten and created, whereas actually it's not intended that way. In fact, they are deliberately set to contrast with one another, and really the beautiful purpose of this word "begotten" is to speak to the fact that, just as a father would procreate a son, so too did Jesus and the Father have a relationality to them. There's something profoundly relational about the Trinity, and it speaks of them being of the same type but also distinct from one another. That's important when we talk about God as Trinity, that he is three persons in one God, that you have both the relationship and you have the same being-type as well.

I think there's a richness to this word that actually we could spend a lot of time on and dig in to, but I don't think it undermines anything in our trinitarian belief. Quite the contrary, this is actually a key world that upholds what Christians believe.

Vince Vitale: Yeah, that's right, and it speaks to the uniqueness of Jesus as well. He is the one and only Son of God. He's not just a son of God lower case, like I am. He's the Son of God, one of a kind.

There's a second approach to thinking about this as well that might be helpful. I mean here, if we look at the Nicene Creed, it says, "We believe in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father." In what sense here are we talking about eternally begotten?

Here it does seem, in some sense, like it is saying that there's some sense in which the son comes of the father or from the father, not made but begotten. In some sense in which the son has been a generation of or come from the father. Some will talk about this as the doctrine of eternal generation. It's not a claim that Jesus came to exist at some point or that Jesus ever had a beginning. It's also not a doctrine that we should think we're going to have a perfect understanding of, and that it's not going to be mysterious in some way. Of course it is! We are talking about the nature of God.

An analogy that I find a bit helpful at least is to imagine an eternally shining sun. So imagine if there was a sun that existed infinitely into the past. It has always existed. It never had any beginning, but it was eternally shining. So the rays of light generated from the sun and intrinsic to the very nature of the sun are always existent, and the sun itself is always existent. They're distinct and yet they have the same nature and neither of them ever had a point of beginning. Is that a perfect analogy? No, but I find it somewhat helpful.

One of the things it shows us is that there can be some sort of ordering between things that doesn't have to be a temporal ordering. If I ask you the question, "Does the sun explain the light rays, or the light rays explain the sun?" The answer is that the sun explains the light rays, but it's not a temporal ordering. Neither of them came to exist. They have existed and been shining for all eternity, and something like that is true. There is a relationship and an ordering in certain respects between the persons of the trinity, but that doesn't mean that there is any sort of hierarchy or that one came before another.

I like the way this analogy aligns at least to some extent with Hebrews 1:3 as well, "Jesus is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature." He is a necessary existing being that is, in itself, intrinsic to the nature of God and follows of necessity from the nature of God.

Jo Vitale: The other thing that holds well with that analogy is that just as it's true that we look at the sun, we see it because of the rays of light, so too does that apply to Jesus and the Father. Jesus says, "No one comes to the Father except through me, but when you've seen the Son, you've seen the Father." So I think that that could hold up in a number of different ways, and the same could be true of the Holy Spirit as well.

Vince Vitale: So it's a great question, and obviously it gets a bit complicated as we start to answer things that have to do with the nature of God, but hopefully one of the things that you take away is that scripture is actually quite precise. We don't understand it perfectly on first read all of the time, but the more you dig in, the more precise it becomes.

Just around Christmas this past year, Ravi made the point that Isaiah 9, "For to us a child is born, to us a son is given." Even way back when the book of Isaiah is written, you have that precision in the scripture. The human child is born but the son is not born, does not begin. The son is given. The son is begotten in that sense of generated from the father and utterly unique.

Michael Davis: There's a reason why the Bible was given to us in Greek and Hebrew. There's so many more words within those that makes a lot more precise.

So let's get to the next question. This question is from Justin: "I heard Ravi speaking in a college once. He said, 'Jesus died on the cross. History demonstrates it.' I know there's a ton of evidence for it, but can you elaborate specifically on what Ravi was saying and meant?"

Vince Vitale: Well that's always a dangerous question, Justin, when you're asked to speak for Ravi because you tend not to say something as insightful as whatever Ravi was communicating, but good question.

Jesus died on the cross. History demonstrates it. What is meant by that? And maybe one way to get at your question is, "How could that be called into question?" In a few different ways, it could be, and some people have made the claim, though I think it's a very unfounded claim, that Jesus never existed. He's just a mythical figure. If that's the case, well then, he certainly didn't die on the cross. Maybe he existed, but he was never crucified and didn't die on the cross. In fact, that's what Islam claims, then he wouldn't have died on the cross either. Or maybe he was crucified and we believed him to have died, but, actually, he faked his death on the cross. It's called the "swoon theory." Friedrich Schleiermacher actually held to this, or at least recommended the theory. That would be another in which Jesus would not have died on the cross.

So maybe that's one way we can open this up. Those are three different ways that claim that Jesus died on the cross could be called into question. I think neither of the three hold up.

Jo Vitale: Addressing the first of those challenges, it's just worth noting, we've done this before on previous episodes as well, but the first place we can go is to extend all evidence outside of the Bible, if we want to talk about the death of Jesus. The irony here is actually the most well-attested fact of Jesus' existence is his death. You can look at Tacitus who we quoted recently. He's the one who ... He's a Roman historian. He's actually seen as very credible as a Roman historian. One of the comments he makes is that Christus, the founder of the name, was put to death by Pontius Pilate, procurator of Judea in the reign of Tiberius, so that's one example from someone who is outside of the Christian faith.

Another person would be Josephus who wrote in his antiquities about Pilate condemning Jesus to death to be crucified. Sometimes people struggle a little bit more with Josephus as a source because there are certain aspects of that quote that look like they may have been doctored by Christians because of the sum of the uniquely positive things he has to say about Jesus, which a Jewish may not have to say, but actually the majority of scholars would say, "Actually no, what we do have here is an original quote." And it's actually quite clear. You can see the places where Christian inserts have been made, but Christians never would have held on to the quote in the first place if there hadn't been something there originally with which to work with. It's actually not hard to pull apart the things that were clearly added that implied the deity of Christ while still holding to the historical facts that Josephus mentioned.

I think those are two very reliable sources outside of the Bible. Now archeology actually also helps us here as well. I find it fascinating that one of their earliest pieces of archeology that we find from around 200 A.D. in regards to Christianity is actually a graffiti of the crucifixion found in Rome on the Palatine Hill, and it presents a picture of the body of a man hanging on the cross with the head of a donkey and the mocking inscription, "Alexamenos worships his God." Basically implying, look at these idiots, they're faith is so stupid, and that they would worship a human being as a god. But clearly, it was understood that central to the Christian faith was the worship of a crucified, while the Romans would say human being, Christians would say God.

But you also only have to read the New Testament to find it just littered with so many references to the cross. The Bible is very specific about the fact that that is the way in which Jesus died, and these writings aren't late writings. Both in the letters of Paul in which we're dating to within a couple of decades of Jesus' life, we find references to the cross. You'll also find it in all four of the gospels, and it's quite remarkable that each of the gospels spends so much time on the death of Jesus and the detail that they go into is, actually, absolutely remarkable, and it coheres with what we know of the practice of Roman crucifixion at that time. For example, for a while they didn't have any evidence that nails would be driven into the hands and feet of crucified victims. They thought maybe they were tied up on the cross and that maybe, you know the gospel writers had just added that detail because it would fit with Psalm 22, which talks about being pierced. That's a psalm that Jesus himself quotes on the cross.

But then they had various archeological discoveries, one in Jerusalem, one in Rome, that actually showed that nails had been driven through the feet of crucifixion victims. The facts of history, of what actually happened in Roman crucifixion, align with what you find in the gospel accounts. Then, of course, there's always that question of if the Christians were making this up as some claim that they were, why would this be the story that you would make up?

Paul talks about the fact that the crucifixion of Jesus is a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to the Gentiles because to the Jews, cursed is anybody who hangs on a tree. So you lose all credibility with the Jews for proclaiming this, and then to the Romans, crucifixion was the most gruesome, undignified, embarrassing, disgusting death you can die. No Roman citizen could even be put to death on a cross. So if you're trying to make a credible case for your religion, why would you have, as your central emblem of the faith, a God who is crucified in the most disgraceful manner possible? You're hardly going to win followers over. It just doesn't make any sense as a story unless it actually happened. Something had to happen that convinced them that this ignoble death somehow becomes the most beautiful, powerful event that ever took place in the universe, but only God actually having done it would make sense of this being the central figure of Christianity.

There's a lot to go on there. The final thing to say maybe is that even the very earliest creeds ... The earliest hymns that Christians sung had the cross in them. So for example in Philippians 2, we find a very early song within Christianity, earlier than Paul's own writing. Paul is quoting something that comes from before him, and that even speaks of becoming, Jesus becoming obedient to death even dying the death on the cross. So this is right at the very beginning, and the very heart of the Christian faith.

Vince Vitale: Yeah, it's a very modern objection, this idea that Jesus didn't live and die. There was no debate about this in the ancient world. People may have thought well or thought poorly of Jesus, but nobody claimed that he didn't exist or that he didn't live the life that he lived in the region that he lived in, and that he didn't die. So it does raise the question, "Why should we think that today?" Even some of those who are most skeptical of these arguments about Jesus not having existed, they're not necessarily Christians, but even nonbelievers, and Bart Ehrman is one who has really written pretty extensively against this idea of claiming that Jesus was just a myth. He doesn't think it's tenable at all. Yet a recent survey suggested that 40% of adults in England do not believe that Jesus was a real historical figure, so we're not necessarily doing a good enough job as Christians communicating just how compelling and widespread and mainstream the evidence for Jesus' life is.

The other possibility that I brought up earlier was this idea that Jesus lived, he was on the cross, but he didn't actually die. One version of that is the "swoon theory," again, I think it's one that's highly untenable: to survive crucifixion, itself, would have been remarkable. Roman law gave the death penalty for any soldier who let a prisoner escape in that way. We see in the gospels, blood and water flowing from Jesus' side, showing that he died maybe from asphyxiation, something that medical experts can attest to that phenomenon. The Roman guards at the tomb, how are they going to be overpowered by Jesus? Even if he did somehow fake his death, he was still on the cross and was tortured beforehand. He would have been very, very hurt and injured.

The biggest one I think is that how, then, do Jesus' friends and disciples wind up coming to worship him as Lord if he somehow escapes from the cross and he appears to them several days later, he's going to appear to them in a state of someone who's barely clinging to life, given all that he went through. Hardly in the state that would have induced people to worship him as Lord. Then also if he did swoon, despite all of this evidence against, where did he go? There's nothing in history in any way implying that Jesus went on to live an extended life afterwards. He appeared in a resurrected state for several weeks and then he ascended. A man of his public ministry, as compelling as him, if he had just faked his death and gone on to live for years afterwards, you certainly would have expected history to speak of that.

I really like the way Simon Gathercole, he's a New Testament scholar from Cambridge University, and I came across this quote by him. I thought he put it really well. He said, "These abundant historical references leave us with little reasonable doubt that Jesus lived and died. The more interesting question, which goes beyond history and objective fact, is whether Jesus died and lived."

Michael Davis: Well let's get to the next question also from Justin. Probably a different Justin, but if it's the same Justin, keep sending those questions, this is awesome.

"Christianity states that Jesus was sinless on earth. Question: if Jesus was fully human and fully God, then why didn't he sin from his human nature side? I certainly understand his God nature not sinning, but why did he not sin from his human part? For me, it always seemed as if he did sin or have faults. In the gospels, I can see him losing his temper occasionally or getting a bit impatient. Nothing major, but minor imperfections. I always liked this because it showed his human side."

Jo Vitale: Justin, I really appreciate this question because one thing that does stand out about Jesus from the gospels and that I, too, love about him is how relatable he is, that he's someone who does know our weakness, who can sympathize with us in our struggle. Even Hebrews talks about him as someone who is tempted in every way. So there's a relatability to Jesus that's so important that God doesn't stay off at a distance, but he's someone who understand what it's like to live a human life.

That's fundamentally important to the Christian faith that God actually did come as a human being and because it's only if he came as a human being and was incarnate in human flesh that he could actually be representative for us as a human being at the cross. So that is absolutely, crucially important. But I think another thing that is crucially important is, as you've said, that he has a God-nature, and what that means, when we're talking about the incarnation, it's so hard for us to get our heads around, of course, there's something deeply mysterious about how all of this works. What Christians don't believe is that Jesus has some kind of multiple personality disorder where at times, it's as if the God nature is in control and, at other times, the man nature is in control. If that were the case then perhaps you could have him, at times, acting perfectly and at times sinning, but that's not what we have when it comes to the incarnation. There's a wholeness and a coherence to Jesus where he doesn't flip between personalities but he is consistent in who he is.

That is absolutely crucial for us because, ultimately, the primary reason why Jesus came is to save us from our sins, but how can he do that if he's not sinless himself? If Jesus sinned, then he's in no position to save anybody else because he, himself, would then need saving. It wouldn't hold up. It would be impossible for God to do what he came to do in Christ if suddenly he's in the same disastrous condition as the rest of us. He has to be set apart. He has to be sinless. That's why Hebrews goes on to say, "He was tempted in every way, yet he was without sin," and I find it fascinating that, throughout the New Testament, the Bible is very clear in its witness that actually Jesus was sinless.

In the book of 1 Peter, it talks about him being the lamb without blemish or defect. It says, "He committed no sin." John also in 1 John says that "in Him was no sin." In 2 Corinthians, Paul writes that "God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us." So we get multiple examples of New Testament writers talking about the sinlessness of Jesus, and what I find so interesting about that is, particularly when you think about the fact that Peter and John wrote two of those letters, people who were eyewitnesses and more than eyewitnesses, they were disciples who spent years following Jesus around, not just an hour, a week or so, but they lived with him. They journeyed with him, all of their time with him, and yet they're still claiming that having spent all that time with him, that he was sinless, what a remarkable thing to say.

Think about the friends you have. It takes about five minutes in their presence to know that they're definitely not without sin. What would it take for you to believe that one of your friends, someone you knew that well, was God and was sinless? You'd have to be utterly convinced, more than just by the resurrection and the fact that they came back from the dead, though obviously that is overwhelming and compelling evidence, but you do also have to be convinced by the life that they lived. These men who wrote these books in the New Testament, they saw something in the life of Jesus that was so perfect, that was so beautiful, that they could point to it and say, "That is more than human. That is divine. That is a man who is truly without sin." I believe that so strongly, I'm willing to stake my own life on it.

Vince Vitale: I think those are really compelling points, and I just think that it's worth emphasizing so strongly this idea that we need someone sinless to save us. The Quran actually at one point says, "And no bearer of burden shall bear the burden of another." It's actually a good point. If someone's bearing a burden, if someone's carrying a heavy burden, they can't carry your burden. If someone has a debt to pay, they can't pay your debt. Muhammad for example, he's commanded to pray for the forgiveness of his sins at points. How, then, can he be one who saves us if he has a burden to bear, how can he also bear our burdens? Jesus is unique in that he doesn't have his own burden to bear and therefore he can bear the burdens of everyone else.

The other thing implicit in the question here is, maybe this feeling that to be human is to sin, and I get that. Experiencing the world as we experience it, in its fallen state, sometimes sin just seems inevitable, but it's not when the Holy Spirit is dwelling within you, there is an empowerment that is possible such that in each specific instance, there is never a temptation that is overpowering and that cannot be resisted if we're relying on God. In fact, that is the destiny that we're heading towards. We're going to be fully human in heaven, and yet we're not going to be sinful there. So it is, therefore, perfectly possible to have a full and true human nature and yet not be sinful.

Jo Vitale: What I do think is great about this question is that it also highlights that we can be emotional without being sinful because one of the examples you've used here is the fact that at times, you'll see Jesus losing his temper or getting frustrated with the way that people are behaving. A classic example is when he overturns the tables of the money changers in the temple because they've turned God's house of worship into a marketplace, a means of making money. What that says to us is actually something really important that there's such a thing as righteous anger, for example. That it's okay to feel angry at what is great injustice or oppression or the persecution of other people, that there is a place to be so zealous for the name of God and His goodness that actually you want to defend that and you're frustrated by what you see as going against that. Elsewhere, similarly, we see Jesus weeping at death. That's not a weakness of his, I would say that's a strength of his, that he has the compassion to care that deeply.

So it just helps us to realize being sinless doesn't mean being emotionless or being unfeeling or uncaring. Those things are also deeply human. We can have emotions. Emotions are a good thing. They're part of the way that God has designed us, but we use them appropriately. I think that's what we see in the life of Jesus as well. I also think Jesus is sinless, but he certainly, we see him identifying with us in weakness, and that's so encouraging to me that there's a humanity there that even Jesus, who's absolutely determined to do the will of God, can still have a vulnerable moment the night before he dies praying, "God, take this cup from me." Yet at the very same time, be in full obedience as he says, "But not my will, but yours be done," but there's still that expression of anguish and of pain and of horror for what is to come.

I think those things are deeply encouraging, Justin. I think those are good things to reflect on when we're struggling and suffering, to know that Jesus struggled and suffered as well, and he was frustrated by the injustices of this world. He wept for those who were grieving, and he had immense compassion on them as well.

Vince Vitale: And the Bible says explicitly, Ephesians 4, "Be angry, but do not sin." So it makes that distinction between the two. We can have challenging, even negative emotions, but that, in itself, is not sin. It's how we respond to it.

Michael Davis: Well, that's all the time we have. Vince, sum it up for us.

Vince Vitale: Well I think the summary of this episode is that we need to believe in the real Jesus. The enemy always wants to turn Jesus into someone who cannot save us, someone who was a created being just like us and therefore limited in power, someone who didn't actually die for our sins, someone who wasn't sinless and therefore can't bear our burden. We've tried that. We've tried to put our hope in things that are limited in power, in things that are created just like us, things that are idols, things that are sinful. It doesn't work, and it will never work. There's only one person we can put our trust in who truly can save us, and that is someone who is eternal, that is someone who is unlimited in power, unconditional in love, and sinless and, therefore, able to bear our sin and our guilt. That's Jesus Christ, and that's why we put our trust in him.

Michael Davis: Vince, Jo, thank you guys for joining me. Thank you all for listening, and we'll catch you guys next time.

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