Session 10.1: Salvation is at the Heart of the Christian Faith
Overview of what we’ve looked at, and that God has a special place for the poor and the margianalised. Those who have should give others. Those with power should not oppress others. We need to be observant about what’s going on around us, and stand up for those who are unable to do so.
The importance of salvation. To save us from sin that twists, distorts, deldes. To free us from the shame, the guilt, the memory of sin. Death had no hold…
Session 10.2: Christ assumed sinful Christian flesh
Being saved is the beginning of a journey, an adventure with God, which transforms us into the likeness of his Son. Move beyond confession to transformation.
Humanity becomes like God:
- 1 John 3:1-3
- 1 Thess 1:6-8
- 2 Cor 3:18
The early Church Fathers
- Took on frail humanity not only to redeem us, but to transform us.
- 2 Pet 1:4 – partakers of the divine nature.
- We are saved, but also partnered and perfected.
Our highest calling is worship, giving actively our whole lives.
Create, initiate and to form/shape the world around us out of this worship.
Taking part in Kingdom plans = come alive.
Ever since Christians said that Jesus came alive from the dead, people thought they were crazy. See work from
- Cyprian of Carthage (3rd C). On the Vanity of Idols
Humanity became part of God through Christ. Nothing can come that close to God without being made perfect… Jesus is the bridge to God.
Eternal word = the basis of the hope that we have.
Session 10.3: The divine makes space for the human
All races are taken into this Jewish Jesus. God begins process of making, remoulding, reforming from corrupt to incorruptibility. We can’t save/remake ourselves – has to come from outside, him who created us. We retain who are – but ‘made perfect’. Gives hope that the ‘unholy’ is not despised, but will take us into his very being, and come what we were meant to be. Effects of sin are reversed – e.g. guilt/shame lifted from us. Conforming to the will of God is the basis of human freedom.
In our culture – freedom is to do what we want without any restraint. Would we want to live in that kind of world? Are in fact already many constraints.
Session 10.4: A Christian view of Freedom
We are not born into total freedom, as we are born into a world of sin. There is a false sense of freedom…
- Who or what do we submit to?
- We accept the will of another, who is not us, who is outside of us, and over us.
- God’s will is good, pleasing and perfect.
- Jesus is the model of humility and our pattern (he made a choice to be human).
Jesus, the model of compassion, powerful in ways that people hadn’t seen power before, etc. However, also gets tired, lonely, vulnerable (although sinless).
Jn 8:36 – ‘If the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed’.
What does this mean for us?
Romans 8 – co-heirs with Christ – process of transformation is under way. We inherit everything that Jesus gets.
The life of a disciple is difficult but not impossible with God. Paul gives a vision for a new humanity with Christ.
Thomas Aquinas – what God wills, will happen.
Barriers that divide us (race, gender, ££, etc.) are destroyed in the Kingdom of God and the church is meant to reflect that in the world around.
Session 10.5: A New Humanity and a New Challenge
A church = a micro-cosm of living in this new way of humanity together.
A new humanity: honour those we are tempted to push to the bottom.
- Peaceful co-existence (reconciliation, a different way of living)
- Barriers erased
- Naturally supernatural
- The assurance of Sonship
- Freedom from fear
- Filled with the power of the Holy Spirit
- What is God calling us to do?
Only once we are a ‘body’ in Christ can we work as a body in the world?
Run our work/lives along Kingdom values. Forgive. Bless, etc. That’s not natural for our human nature, but as we do it, it becomes more natural.
Creation to share in abundant life. Ask God to show you how you can continue to share in his work? What will the coming of God’s kingdom look like, and what will it mean for us? How is this part of the plan to bring freedom and liberation to the lost?
Where we’re heading in the future, should change the way we live now.
Firm foundations – faith won’t be shaken when the difficult times come? A new inviolable identity in Christ. What would happen to us if released from the fear of death, insignificance and rejection? Filled with the power of the Holy Spirit? What is humanity capable of, what would he call us to do?
LIVE LIFE TO THE FULL … and I recommend you join this course for yourselves, rather than rely on the notes I’ve taken for my own benefit.
Dr Bex Lewis is passionate about helping people engage with the digital world in a positive way, where she has more than 20 years’ experience. She is Senior Lecturer in Digital Marketing at Manchester Metropolitan University and Visiting Research Fellow at St John’s College, Durham University, with a particular interest in digital culture, persuasion and attitudinal change, especially how this affects the third sector, including faith organisations, and, after her breast cancer diagnosis in 2017, has started to research social media and cancer. Trained as a mass communications historian, she has written the original history of the poster Keep Calm and Carry On: The Truth Behind the Poster (Imperial War Museum, 2017), drawing upon her PhD research. She is Director of social media consultancy Digital Fingerprint, and author of Raising Children in a Digital Age: Enjoying the Best, Avoiding the Worst (Lion Hudson, 2014) as well as a number of book chapters, and regularly judges digital awards. She has a strong media presence, with her expertise featured in a wide range of publications and programmes, including national, international and specialist TV, radio and press, and can be found all over social media, typically as @drbexl.