Free Paper on Christian Theology Unveiled: Exploring Beliefs, Atonement Theories, and Divine Concepts

Published: 2023-12-25
Free Paper on Christian Theology Unveiled: Exploring Beliefs, Atonement Theories, and Divine Concepts
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  God Christianity
Pages: 7
Wordcount: 1912 words
16 min read


Christians perceive God as "a royal judge" who fights for and brings justice to the poor and oppressed. Similarly, like earthly judges, the divide judge measures people's actions (whether evil or good) against the set rules, after which he punishes the wrongdoers and rewards the just. However, Christians trust that people are judged for their sins once they die when souls leave the body, which explains the concepts of Hell and Heaven (Torrance, 2016). This is seen in the phrase, “for we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ…whether good or bad." (2nd Corinthians 5:10). Similarly, Lazarus and the rich man's story further supports God's concept as a judge, which means that individuals must conform to the scripture and God's rules to be accepted in Heaven. Justice, in this case, is believed to bring restoration; words such as Tzedek and Mishpat are used continuously throughout the bible to mean right judgment and fairness. God rescues the Israelites from captivity and restores them to the Promised Land. This gives Christians hope for restoration.

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God as the creator

Christians believe in one true infinite God, who is the sustainer and creator of the whole universe and everything in it. In this case, the information is retrieved from Geneses 1:1, which states, "In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth" This reveals the nature of God as superior. Christians also believe that God created them from dust and formed them while in their mother’s womb (Torrance, 2016). He creates them in his image and makes them in charge of the rest of the creation, making man God's coworker.

The nature of Satan, according to Christian claims.

According to Christians, Satan represents the “fallen angel” who was cast-out from Heaven after rebelling and disobeying God. Satan represents evil and the origin of sin to humanity. In the bible, he takes the form of a serpent persuading Eve and Adam to sin against God by eating the forbidden fruit (Torrance, 2016). Other terms to describe Satan include the dragon in Revelation, the accuser of Job, an agent of evil, and is against God's salvation plans.

What does Homoousia mean in Christianity, and what caused the development of this claim?

In Christianity, the term homoousios, "of one substance," is referred to as a primary term in Christological doctrine whose use traces back to the initial ecumenical council held in 325, Nicaea. The primary purpose was to affirm that "God the Father" and "God the Son" are the same. Emperor Constantine led the first "Council of Nicaea," and the primary purpose was to resolve controversies in churches regarding the relationship with the Trinity. In this case, the council criticized Arianism, which argued that Christ was not entirely divine but instead was "more than human." Arianism, in this case, was declared a heresy since it contradicted Redemption beliefs, the Holy Trinity, and Christ's divine nature. The incorporation of homoousios aimed at eliminating the controversies; however, this did not entirely work since Arianism influences continued throughout the centuries in the church (Torrance, 2016). “Emperor Theodosius 1" called for the 2nd ecumenical council, “1st Constantinople Council” in 381, which was significant in affirming and developing the previous creed. The Nicene Creed was incorporated into the final statements of “the orthodox beliefs.”

What is the purpose and the Holy Spirit's role?

The Holy Spirit’s power guides Christians into becoming sanctified, sealed, and saved. The spirit reveals to people “God's teachings, and thoughts,” and “guides, and intercedes the ways of Christians in overcoming temptations. The verse, John 14:16 for instance, states that, "the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send…will teach you all things." Christians also believe that the holy spirit fills, lives in them and even convicts and judges the world of sins" which is evident "do you not know…God's spirit dwells in you" (1st Corinthians 3:16). The spirit leads believers into doing God's will and helps to foresee events to come. The spirit also gives believers gifts such as power, knowledge, and wisdom in their everyday activities. Most importantly, the holy spirit acts as a seal for Christians and marks them as God's children; by dwelling in them and making them holy, believers become new and are guided towards attaining eternal life.

Christians qualify their monotheistic claim about God, noting the Trinitarian character of God. What does that mean?

Trinity is ranked among the primary Christian affirmations concerning God. The traditional Christian doctrines regarding the Trinity involve the belief in one God who exists in "three equally divine persons," that is, the Holy Spirit, the Son, and the Father who are consubstantial. In this case, the three are considered “the one God” in the scripture (Torrance, 2016). This Christian theology dominated years after its imperial enforcement and formulation towards the end of the 4th century. The three are co-eternal, co-equal, and have similar attributes and nature, and should therefore be given the same obedience and worship. However, in "post-reformation modernity, “Trinitarian doctrine justification, meaning, and origin remained disputed. The main arguments are regarding "the self-consistency" of Trinitarian theology, which holds that the three divine persons' presence means that there are three gods.

Christians claim that Jesus is both fully divine and fully human. Describe what Christians understand about human nature.

Christian's understanding of human nature traces back to the creation stories, whereby people were formed in God's own likeness and image. Belief in fallen nature after Eve and Adam disobeyed God in the Garden of Eden, resulting in punishments such as death and suffering still endured up to date (McGrath, 2016). The Christians teach, “The doctrine of original sin” that permanently affects human souls such that humans are conceived with the inclination to sin. The incarnation also referred to as mysteries regarding the union between human natures and the divine, is used in explaining the true nature of Jesus. The church clarified this truth and defended it against Heresies, among others, against it. The hypostatic union can also be used to explain Jesus as a man and God. The scripture states that he was born and wrapped in infant clothing, his wisdom grew, and he also experienced other human characteristics apart from the fact that he never sinned. He was born of a virgin (Mary), representing holiness and purity, free from sin, which makes him distinct from human beings (Torrance, 2016).

Similarly, the scripture presents Jesus with every God's attribute, he rules everything, and he is omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent. In John 20:28, Thomas cried "My lord and my God," which also reveals the nature of Jesus. Jesus is entirely God, which is also shown in Colossians 2:9, "for in him all the fullness of deity…in bodily form."

What does the concept of rebirth mean in Christian theology?

Rebirth, also called "being born again," is a term used to mean spiritual rebirth or renewal in which God gives believers salvation and new life different from that which the person was distant from God. The term's meaning differs between mainstream and contemporary Christians. In this case, it can mean joining Christianity through baptism or as an adjective in describing movement members such as "born-again movements." The New Testament uses the term in explaining to Christians the importance of redemption. In this case, the name traces back to Jesus' words when he told the Jewish Pharisee, "No one can see the kingdom of God…born again." Therefore, Christians perceive rebirth as essential to grow closer to God and, in the end, attain eternal life.

Eschatology attempts to understand what happens to each individual when they die and what will happen at the end of human history. Describe two claims made at various points in Christian history.

Eschatology entails the end of times, resurrection, rebirth, the coming of Christ, and soul immortality. The concepts influence an individual’s knowledge of death and significant turning points in life. Christianity believes in life after death, "eternal life," and God's judgment of people, after which they are either rewarded (Heaven) or punished (hell) (McGrath, 2016). Corporate and physical aspects of eschatology are viewed whereby individuals are expected to experience intermediate states and physical death (which involves the separation of the body from the soul). The concept of death refers to not only physical death but also spiritual death as defined by Apostle Paul in Ephesians 2: 1-3, "and you he made alive who were dead…sins in which you once lived." The primary Christian perception of their faith is the belief in the Kingdom of God and that the Old Testament messages concerning the Messiah were fulfilled in the coming of Christ who would bring salvation to them. They, therefore, presumed "Christ's second coming" with the belief that it was imminent. Future eschatology is significant in understanding humanity, salvation, and the church's missions.

Describe the claims made by Christians about the nature of God’s Kingdom.

God’s Kingdom, also known as, Heaven is perceived as "the spiritual realm in which God rules as King." The term is used throughout the NT (New Testament), particularly in the three gospel books. In this case, God’s Kingdom is the dominant message in Jesus Christ's lessons (McGrath, 2016). Concerning the early Christian perceptions of "the kingdom of God," two of these concepts were derived from Judaism. They included the perception of a worldly messianic realm centered in Jerusalem, and the temporal Messiah was to be from David's dynasty. The other eschatological perception included the existence of heavenly kingdoms led by a divine Messiah whose members consisted of the elected during the resurrection. From John's Revelation and Paul's letters, Christians believe that faithful believers will initially rule for some time in the world after the Lord returns. Those believers alive at that time will not die 1st Thessalonians 4:17. Other believers who are dead will resurrect, after which they will also "share in the kingdom upon earth,” Afterward, all the dead will rise again, after which the last judgment will take place. Concerning the imminent expectations of the kingdom of God, research provides that Most European Christians move to Palestine in search of their salvation land and to ensure their presence when Christ returns.

Choose and explain one of the Christian atonement theories.

Ransom theory

It holds to the argument that Jesus Christ’s death was a “ransom sacrifice" meant to free humankind from being enslaved by sin. Traditionally the concept of this debt was that it was paid to Satan. The idea is that when humans sin, they enslave themselves to Satan. God seeks to free humanity from Satan, and therefore he offers Satan something which Satan can trade all of us for. God, therefore, sends Jesus, his Son, in human form who fools Satan into thinking he was a man (McGrath, 2016). After performing miracles, Satan viewed Jesus to be increasingly valuable than all other individuals. Gregory states that “when the enemy saw the value and power of Christ, he acknowledged Christ as a bargain…chose him as the ransom." Since Satan cannot tempt Christ into sinning and condemn him to death, the only way was to trade the human beings he had enslaved for Jesus. God’s victory over Satan is then revealed in Jesus Christ’s resurrection. Objections of the theory are that God appears less omnipotent and a deceiver. It is also mysterious how God accepted Satan's claims on human beings.

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