How Did Christ, Being the Son of God, Become Man? (Part 2)

Question 25b- How did Christ, being the Son of God, become man?

“Consequently, when Christ came into the world, he said, ‘Sacrifices and offerings you have not desired, but a body have you prepared for me'” – Heb 10:5 ESV

Wherefore, when he cometh into the world, he saith, In Ps 40:7. This was said by David, not of himself, and his own times, for sacrifice and offering were desired and required in his times; nor was he able to do the will of God; so as to fulfil the law, and make void legal sacrifices; nor did he engage as a surety to do this; nor was it written of him in the volume of the book that he should: besides, he speaks of one that was not yet come, though ready to come, when the fulness of time should be up; and who is here spoken of as coming into the world, and who is no other than Jesus Christ; and this is to be understood, not of his coming into Judea, or the temple at Jerusalem; or out of a private, into a public life; nor of his entrance into the world to come, into heaven, into life eternal, as the Targum on Ps 40:7 paraphrases it, after he had done his work on earth, for the other world is never expressed by the world only; nor did Christ go into that to do the will of God, but to sit down there, after he had done it; besides, Christ’s entrance into heaven was a going out of the world, and not into it. To which may be added, that this phrase always signifies coming into this terrene world, and intends men’s coming into it at their birth; See Gill on John 1:9 and must be understood of Christ’s incarnation, which was an instance of great love, condescension, and grace; and the, reason of it was to do what the law, and the blood of bulls and goats, could not do. For it follows,

sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not; or didst not desire and delight in, as the word חפץ, used in Ps 40:6 signifies; meaning not the sacrifices of wicked men, or such as were offered up without faith in Christ; but the ceremonial sacrifices God himself had instituted, and which were offered in the best manner; and that not merely in a comparative sense, as in Hos 6:6 but the meaning is, that God would not have these continue any longer, they being only imposed for a time, and this time being come; nor would he accept of them, as terms, conditions, and causes of righteousness, pardon, peace, and reconciliation; but he willed that his Son should offer himself an offering, and a sacrifice for a sweet smelting savour to him.

But a body hast thou prepared me; or “fitted for me”; a real natural body, which stands for the whole human nature; and is carefully expressed, to show that the human nature is not a person. This was prepared, in the book of God’s purposes and decrees, and in the council and covenant of grace; and was curiously formed by the Holy Ghost in time, for the second Person, the Son of God, to clothe himself with, as the Syriac version renders it, “thou hast clothed me with a body”; and that he might dwell in, and in it do the will of God, and perform the work of man’s redemption: in Ps 40:6 it is, “mine ears thou hast opened”; digged or bored, the ear being put for the whole body; for if he had not had a body prepared, he could not have had ears opened: besides; the phrase is expressive of Christ’s assuming the form of a servant, which was done by his being found in fashion as a man, Phil 2:7 and of his being a voluntary servant, and of his cheerful obedience as such, the opening, or boring of the ear, was a sign, Exod 21:5. And thus by having a true body prepared for him, and a willing mind to offer it up, he became fit for sacrifice. [Gill]

“Then he said to them, ‘My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch with me.'” – Mat 26:38 ESV

Then saith he unto them, The three disciples, Peter, James, and John, who, by his looks and gestures, might know somewhat of the inward distress of his mind; yet he choose to express it to them in words, saying,

my soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death. That Christ had an human soul, as well as an human body, is clear from hence; and which was possessed of the same passions as ours are, but without sin, such as joy, love, grief, sorrow, &c. and at this time its sorrows were exceeding great: his soul was beset all around with the sins of his people; these took hold on him, and encompassed him, which must, in the most sensible manner, affect his pure and spotless mind; the sorrows of death and hell surrounded him on every side, insomuch that the least degree of comfort was not let in to him; nor was there any way open for it, so that his soul was overwhelmed with sorrow; his heart was ready to break; he was brought even, as it were, to the dust of death; nor would his sorrows leave him, he was persuaded, until soul and body were separated from each other; see a like phrase in Judg 16:16,

tarry ye here. The Ethiopic adds, “till I shall return”, for he was going a little further from them, to vent his grief, and pour out his soul unto God. Munster’s Hebrew Gospel reads it, “expect me”, or “wait for me here”, signifying, that he should return to them shortly,

and watch with me. It was night, and they might be heavy and inclined to sleep: he knew it would be an hour of temptation both to him and them, and therefore advises them to watch against it; and to observe how it would go with him, and what should befall him, that they might be witnesses of it, and be able to testify what agonies he endured, what grace he exercised, and how submissive he was to his Father’s will. [Gill]

Answer – Christ, the Son of God, became man by taking to Himself a true body and a reasonable soul; being conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit in the womb of the Virgin Mary, and born of her, yet without sin.

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