By Richard Abanes
In protecting the religion, Richard Abanes offers the fundamental doctrines of Christianity and indicates how cults and different new religions both deviate from or deny them.
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Extra resources for Defending the Faith: A Beginner's Guide to Cults and New Religions
The result in g Niceno-Constantinopolitan Creed declared that Jesus was "begotten, nOt made. ,,-This assertion was their attempt to make clear the biblical teaching that the Son (Second Person of the Holy Trinity) had always existed and , in becoming a man, simply took on h uman form as Jesus of Nazareth. The Council also sttessed that Jesus' \'ery nature, or essence, was the same as the Father's: We belie\'e in ONE GOD THE FATHER ALMIGHTI... , And in one Lord JESUS CHRIST, the only-begotten Son of God, Begotten of the Father before all worlds; God of God, Light of Light.
Unless, of course, he was (is) God. Why could he not be either a liar or a lunatic? Because of his character. There are two things everyone admits about Jesus' char· acter: he was wise and he was good. A lunatic is the opposite of wise, and a liar is the opposite of good. There are lunatics in asylums who sincerely believe they are God. The "divinity complex" is a recognized form of psychopathology. Its character traits are well known: egotism, narcissism, inflexib ility, dullness, predictability, inability to understand and love Olhers as they really are and creatively relate to omers....
They condemn belief in Jesus' divine nature as a corrupt and groundless doctrine of the devil. Ironically some of the most impressi ve statemen ts regarding Jesus' identity as the God,man come from Jesus himself. It is to these texts that we will first turn our attention. Goo I:-J THREE PERSONS 80 )ESliS OF NAZARETH 81 God the Son My Lord and My God Many scholars agree that one of the most revolutionary aspects of Christ's ministry was h is emphasis on the unique relationship he had with God: In addition to Jesus' words, there are the remarks of the disciples, John the aposde stated that Jesus existed "in the beginning" as God (John 1: 1).