Another question has come up, though. Perhaps you'd like to ponder this one with me. Ready?
Can we truly be like Jesus?
Some would say no because he was "fully God" even when he was "fully man."
This question has caused my heart to ache more than "Is Hell Eternal?" If Jesus came to earth to take on the form of man so that we can see how to live in relationship with God as a man, then it is extremely discouraging for me to think that I can't be like Jesus. It's as though those who believe we cannot be like Jesus are saying He set a standard for us but there is no way we can achieve that standard. What a bummer? Why try, then?
Reminds me of the quote my son shared with me this morning:
"Do or do not. Don't try." ~ Yoda in The Empire Strikes Back
To me, Jesus showed us how to live by the Holy Spirit. Jesus, the Christ, made himself human - with all the limitations of humanness - so that he could 1) be the representative for man's earned justice; 2) experience created life just like we do; so that 3) he could help us as one who has been in our shoes. (Hebrews 2:9-18)
No, I was not born of a virgin but I have been reborn by the Holy Spirit. That's not just a goofy spiritual expression. There is no doubt in my mind that I am not the person I used to be. I am a new creation. I'm not perfect. Just as a baby transforms into an adult, I'm being transformed into a mature creation of the Holy Spirit, like Jesus did.
And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men. Luke 2:52In much the same way that Jesus gave up his divine abilities to be human (Philippians 2:6-8), I have given up my God-given right to be only human so that I may experience the divine. Jesus showed us how to take part in the divine nature as a human - by living every minute fully dependent on the Holy Spirit.
I don't do that as perfectly as Jesus did but in those moments when I do, I am just like Jesus. And that gives me hope that I can be like him more today than I was yesterday.
His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires. 2 Peter 1:3-4