The two Adams

Ye search the scriptures, because ye think that in them ye have eternal life; and these are they which bear witness of me; and ye will not come to me, that ye may have life. (John 5:39-40 ― Revised Version).

Reading the Gospel accounts, we get a picture of Jesus as something of an upstart rabbi ― as an adolescent arguing with the learned doctors in the temple, standing up to speak in the synagogue, preaching to crowds gathered in public spaces, and working closely with those whom he had shoulder-tapped to be his disciples. There can be no doubt that he knew the scriptures intimately.

Right back in the opening lines of Paradise Lost, John Milton referred to “one greater Man” ― the second Adam, also called the last Adam. As Paul puts it, “The first man is of the earth, earthy; the second man is the Lord from heaven” (see I Corinthians 15:45-47).

It is not without significance that, while the Roman soldier who watches him die calls him the Son of God, he refers to himself as the Son of Man. Furthermore, in John 14:6, Jesus refers to himself as “the way ands the truth and the life”.

The Jesus we read about in the New Testament is what we might call “double-natured” — Human and Divine.

“If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. | You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:31-32).

I tell you everything that is really nothing, and nothing of what is everything, do not be fooled by what I am saying. Please listen carefully and try to hear what I am not saying. (Charles C Finn)

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