Recently, I received a review copy of The Incarnation of God by John Clark and Marcus Johnson from Crossway. I had been looking forward to reading this work and was not dissapointed!
Often when the doctrine of Christology is presented, the focus is on the deity of Christ in relation to his obedience, death, and resurrection. Even looking at the modern church calendar, much focus is given to Easter and the time leading up. It’s no surprise when Clark and Johnson write:
“Modern Christians routinely find themselves in a subtle state of malaise regarding the enfleshment of God in the person of Jesus Christ, in that their ongoing affirmation of this essential feature of Christian orthodoxy is coupled with an ever-increasing vagueness as to its significance and implications.” (pg. 46)
It is this important doctrine that Johnson and Clark seek to reintroduce to the modern church; a truth that has implications for ones own spiritual formation and discipleship. A doctrine that impacts how one lives their life. Looking to Jesus, we see what it means to be truly human.
“Because we have been consecrated in body and soul by Christ’s consecration of his body and soul for us, we are to render what Calvin called the “finest worship of God.” This worship entails prayer, praise, faith, obedience, service to our neighbor, and mutual love, care, and intercession for fellow believers—a comprehensive self-offering in grateful response for Christ’s once-for-all self-offering for us.” (Pg. 326-27)
An issue within the modern church has been the lack of proper study and teaching on the doctrine of the incarnation. With a lack of instruction, individuals default to believe whatever makes the most sense to them. I myself had fallen into this trap. There is much richness and history (as is shown in Johnson and Clark’s work) that guides and helps individuals to form a proper understanding.
While reading, I found myself responding in praise and worship to our Great God. A proper view of who God is should lead to nothing else but praise and worship.
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Marcus Johnson and John Clark, The Incarnation of God, The Mystery of the Gospel as the Foundation of Evangelical Theology (Wheaton, Illinois: Crossway, 2015).