The term incarnation comes from a Latin term meaning “in flesh.” It means God took on human nature. The Incarnation means that suddenly there were two natures in one Person. The two natures were always distinct and never mixed within the one person; 1) Divine and 2) human.
What are the reasons and purposes for the Incarnation? There are twelve specific reasons why the Incarnation occurred in the scriptures.
The first reason was that the Incarnation was conditioned by human sin.
“For the Son of man came to seek and to save that which was lost.”
Also, John 3:13-21 explains that the purpose was to save sinners. The Incarnation was conditioned by human sin; human sin necessitated the Incarnation. As Hebrews 2:14 states, it was necessary for Him to become flesh and blood in order to deal with the issue of sin.
The second purpose and reason for the Incarnation was to reveal God to man, in order to be a revelation to man concerning the truths of the Father. He came for the purpose of revealing the Father. According to John 1:18, “No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He hath declared Him.” When one of His own disciples eventually asked Jesus to show them the Father, Jesus answered, “If you have seen me, you have seen the Father,” John 14:9. Everything that is true of the nature of the Father is true of the Son.
The third reason and purpose for the Incarnation was to provide us with an example for living
(I Peter2:21; I John 2:6). In His humanity, Jesus lived a life-style that the believer should imitate. He underwent a suffering in a meek manner; we too, should undergo our suffering in the same way.
The fourth purpose for the Incarnation was to provide a sacrifice for sin (Hebrews 2:9; 10:1-10; I John 3:5). The removal of sin required better blood than animal blood. The better blood was human blood, but it had to be sinless human blood. This ruled out every human being that existed since the fall of Adam with the exception of Jesus. Jesus has sinless, innocent, human blood; for that reason, He was able to become the sacrifice for our sin.
The fifth purpose for the Incarnation was to destroy the works of the Devil; to render his works inoperative (John 12:31; 16:11; Col. 2:15; Heb. 2:14; I John 3:8). Of these five passages, perhaps the clearest statement of this fact is Hebrews 2:14:
“Since then the children are sharers in flesh and blood, He also Himself in like manner partook of the same; that through death He might bring to nought him that had the power of death, that is, the devil.”
The sixth reason for the Incarnation was to enable Jesus to be a merciful High Priest. This is especially stressed in the book of Hebrews (Heb. 2:17-18; 5:1-2; 8:1; 9:11-14). In Hebrews five, the passage emphasizes that for one to be a real genuine priest, he had to be human. By becoming a man, by becoming Incarnate, He could become, and continues to be, our High Priest. This also enables Him to offer sacrifices, as only priests could do. He was able to offer a better sacrifice-His own blood-not animal blood.
To be continued…
Elder Carolyn Prescod