Scandal of Jesus, love for world

  • Sumo

The scandal of particularity is sometimes considered an embarrassment for Christians.

That one man is the only way of salvation for all people seems a little rude, to put it mildly! Jesus lived and was killed nearly 2000 years ago, yet we still insist

There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to people, and we must be saved by it.
Acts 4:12 (hcsb)

The scandal is necessary.

Without the particularity of Jesus, we lose the love of God for his world.

It’s easy to have a generic ‘up there’, and purely spirit God/god. And it’s easy to say he/she/it/they love the world. But does this god love the world? Not really, not like the God of the Bible whom we meet in Jesus.

For Jesus became man in this world, and in this world’s way. That is, in a specific place, among a specific people. He had family, he had language. He’s true man of true man. Pilate (ironically) spoke truly, ‘Behold the man!

A generic and indeterminate god does not love the world, because this kind of god never came to visit. But Jesus is Immanuel, God with us, and very particular.

A generic god will reduce the occasional squirming moment, the tendency to a little embarrassment. But the generic god has thrown out divine love and engagement with the world he created. Thank God for the scandal of particularity!