Unit 2 - Jesus
Section 1 - Son of God
What did Peter and Thomas call Jesus?
How does this recognition feed into the purpose of writing the gospel? (See John 20:31)
Doing-It-Together Task A
Recall the gospels and pick out
• one or two incidents in which Jesus comes across as truly awesome.
• one or two in which he comes across as entirely human.
In small groups hear and appreciate each other’s choices.
Then choose some of those incidents to imagine yourselves into. Imagine you were there at the time. In your own words tell each other what is happening and what you make of Jesus.
In the New Testament letters John said they wrote about what they had seen and heard. 1 John 1: 1 – “We have heard it, and we have seen it with our eyes; yes, we have seen it, and our hands have touched it.” They were witnesses.
In describing what he saw John gave his understanding of what was happening.
“We write to you about the Word of life, which has existed from the very beginning... When this life became visible, we saw it; so we speak of it and tell you about the eternal life which was with the Father and was made known to us.”
Notice that John was doing theology. Talking about God like this, based on thinking about experience, is doing theology. It can be done for three purposes:
- to clarify your own ideas
- to compare your experience and understanding with others and so build a fuller picture
- to share the benefits of these experiences and understandings with other people.
As John was doing this he identified Jesus as the Son of God. “What we have seen and heard we announce to you also, so that you will join with us in the fellowship that we have with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. We write this in order that our joy may be complete.” (1 John 1: 3)
What is your experience of Jesus, if any? Some people say that Jesus has revealed himself to them. Some say they have a personal relationship with Jesus. Some say they see Jesus in people around them. If you have direct experience of Jesus, think how you would describe it to your group.
Some people say they are more acutely aware of the love of the Father or the power of the Spirit than the person of Jesus. Some say God has spoken to them, or they worship God, without thinking particularly of one or other person of the Trinity. Such experiences may be shared during other Units of this course. In this Unit we are concentrating on Jesus.
If you have your own experiences of Jesus to share, there will be an opportunity to do so in the group session. This will be a time to listen and appreciate without any thought of evaluating whether some are more valid or special than others.