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Exaltation Christology in the Speeches in Acts

In this post I return to the topic of early Christology. To review what I’ve covered so far: I have indicated that early on in the Christian tradition there were two types of Christology, one of which I have called “exaltation” Christology (I have not mentioned yet the other type); this is sometimes called a “low” Christology or a Christology from below. This is the view that Jesus started out as a human, nothing more, but came to be exalted by God to become his Son, the Lord. This view, I have argued, can be found in fragments of creeds and confessions that were later quoted by authors of the New Testament, so that in terms of raw chronology, they were formulated well *before* the New Testament was written. And I isolated Romans 1:3-4 as just one such case, where Paul quotes a confession that indicates that whereas Jesus was the human messiah from David’s seed, he became the “son of God in power” at the resurrection. This is not exactly Paul’s own view, but [...]

2020-04-17T13:36:34-04:00February 11th, 2013|Acts of the Apostles, Early Christian Doctrine|

Exaltation Christology in an Early Creed

So far in this series of posts dealing with How Jesus Became God, I have maintained that in the very early years of Christianity, soon after the disciples came to believe in the resurrection, there were two forms of Christology that emerged. And I have discussed only one of these two forms, one that considered Jesus to be a full flesh and blood human being(as he considered himself!), and nothing more than a man, until at some point God exalted him and made him his son, the ruler of all, the messiah, the Lord. I am calling this kind of “low” Christology (low because it stresses that Jesus started out as a human and not divine) a Christology “from below” or an “exaltation” Christology. I have also argued that this kind of Christology can be found in some of the earliest materials in the New Testament, that in fact it is imbedded in quotations of earlier pre-literary sources found in various writings of the NT. In my previous post I talked about how scholars have [...]

Exaltation Christology: Some Background

Yesterday I posted the first in what will be a series of reflections on the earliest Christian Christologies (understandings of Christ), a in this post I would like to provide some necessary background information that will allow that post to make even better sense. In that post I began to outline what I take to be the earliest Christology of all. Jesus and his followers, I maintained, saw him(self) as a man and nothing more than a man (who was a great teacher, a prophet, and the future messiah of the coming kingdom – but human through and through, nothing else). But once these followers came to believe that he had been raised from the dead, they altered their view to begin to think that God had exalted him to heaven and made him his specially anointed one, his Son, who would indeed be the future messiah and who would bring in that Kingdom himself when he returned from heaven as the Son of Man. And so, why do I think that this Christological view [...]

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