Membership and Incarnation

In connection with the previous post, how does one determine membership in Christ’s body? Determined by God, of course, but how do we correctly ascertain God’s determination and to what extent should we even try?

Differing attitudes towards determining that membership hinder the fulfullment of our Lord’s prayer in John 17 so discussion about those differing attitudes is certainly appropriate and, as has been pointed out, those attitudes and worldviews differ a great deal.

However, before talking about our membership in Christ’s body, the Word becoming flesh – the Incarnation – must be considered. While the Incarnation is part of all Christian worldviews, the nature and extent of the participation of the Incarnation in the forming and content of those worldviews varies considerably. A useful, though academic, book on the topic is The Incarnation, edited by Stephen T. Davis, Daniel Kendall and Gerald O’Collins. This is record of an international symposium on the incarnation of the Son of God in 2000. One of the papers from that symposium is NT Wright’s article on Jesus’ Self-Understanding.

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