2 The Son of God Humbled Himself God’s love for us is so great that he took on the frailty of humanity in order to save us from our sin.
3 The Gospels tell us that Jesus experienced all the physical and emotional things that challenge each one of us.Jesus experienced hunger and thirst. He endured insults and injury. He was deserted by his friends. Jesus was tired, and afraid, and sad, and angry. Jesus was tempted, and yet never sinned.
4 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. The Humanity of JesusThe Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us.
5 The Gospels of Matthew and Luke remind us that Jesus is firmly rooted in the human family by each presenting a detailed genealogy for Jesus and his family tree.These genealogies are records of the human ancestors of Jesus. Each one makes statements about what is important in his human origins.Writing to different audiences, Matthew and Luke each emphasize different things about Jesus’ family history that illustrate what they believe about him.
6 Matthew writes to a Jewish-Christian audience, and wanted to show that Jesus shared the heritage of the Chosen People.He tells us that Jesus is the son (descendent) of Abraham, and of David. Since Abraham is the father of the Hebrews, and David was Israel’s greatest king, this gives us important information about Jesus’ status as Messiah and King.
7 Matthew also, however, included some details that were not typical for a genealogy directed to his audience.The Evangelist lists five women in the ancestry of Jesus. Female ancestors would not normally be a concern for a Jewish audience. Also, some of the women Matthew includes had backgrounds that might cause concern for his readers.Perhaps Matthew included Tamar, Rahab, Bathsheba, Ruth, and Mary to show that God is a God of surprises. He chooses whomever he wants to be his instruments, even if they do not fit people’s expectations—as Jesus did in choosing his apostles.
8 Luke wrote for a Gentile-Christian audience, so what he emphasizes in his genealogy of Jesus is quite different from Matthew’s.Instead of focusing on the Hebrew kings and tracing Jesus’ lineage only as far back as Abraham, the father of the Hebrews, Luke’s genealogy goes all the way back to Adam—the first human being.Luke is making the point that Jesus is truly human; son of Adam, the ancestor of all human beings;but also, Son of God.
9 There are differences in the names of the ancestors included in the genealogies of Matthew and Luke. The two family trees were not intended to be comprehensive. They are condensed summaries of the lineage of Jesus. The shortening may have been done to aid in memorization for early Christians who would pass on the stories orally.
10 Before his public ministry, Jesus worked as a carpenter—the trade he learned from his foster father, Joseph.Matthew 13:55 tells us that Jesus was known as “the carpenter’s son,” and Mark 6:3 identifies Jesus as “the carpenter, the son of Mary.”
11 Jesus also used many metaphors from the carpentry trade in his teaching. The images Jesus chose of building towers, wine presses, storage barns, and homes with a good foundation show not only an understanding of the trade, but also an appreciation for the importance of hard work.
12 Luke makes it clear that Mary and Joseph raised Jesus in the Jewish faith. According to Jewish law, Jesus was circumcised and presented in the Temple. Growing up in Nazareth, his primary language would have been Aramaic, but he also would have learned Hebrew so that he could study the Torah—the body of Jewish literature, teaching, and law.
13 There would have been much emphasis on memorization in Jesus’ education, and he clearly learned the Scriptures well.When he was accidentally left in the Temple as a boy, he was found later, amazing the priests and scribes with his knowledge of God’s word.
14 Jesus had an intimate knowledge of the Scriptures. The Gospels are full of passages in which Jesus quotes from the Old Testament, and gives interpretations of the Scriptures that astound his listeners.
15 us, had both a body and a soul. By Nature, One of UsEvery human being possesses two qualities that define our human nature:a human body andan immortal soul.Jesus, like all ofus, had both a body and a soul.
16 The Gospels, especially the Passion Narratives, make it clear that Jesus had a human body. Jesus encountered physical hunger and thirst, fatigue, pain, and every other experience that comes with possessing a human body—even death.
17 We must realize that Jesus had emotions and The human soul, or spirit, has two faculties: intellect and free will.Like all human beings, Jesus’ intellect enabled him to reason, learn, and reflect upon his emotions. His will allowed him to choose between good and evil.We must realize that Jesus had emotions andmade choices. His experience of humanitywas like ours in all things but sin.
18 In the exercise of our intellect and will, something all human beings experience is temptation. Jesus, too, was tempted. Temptation is not, itself, a sin. It is a test of the right use of our freedom. Unlike the rest of us, Jesus passed every test. During his forty days of fasting in the wilderness, Jesus was tempted repeatedly by Satan, but never gave in.
19 In the exercise of our intellect and will, something all human beings experience is temptation. Jesus was tempted at other times as well. Certainly, one of the greatest temptations Jesus faced was to turn away from his mission during the terrible time of his passionand crucifixion.
20 Jesus also had a human intellect Jesus also had a human intellect. The Gospels tell us that he grew in wisdom and knowledge—revealing that his human knowledge was not unlimited.There are things that, even as the Son of God, Jesus did not know. To be truly human, his intellect had to be like that of all other human beings. But as Jesus responded perfectly to his Father’s will, his human knowledge grew to attain a fullness of understanding of the eternal plan of Salvation.
21 Jesus loved others and was loved in return. Beginning with the pure affection shared between himself and Mary and Joseph, Jesus knew unselfish love. He also had close personal friends like Martha, Mary, Lazarus, and his apostles. Jesus even showed deep affection for people hedidn’t really know.
22 As a human being, Jesus experienced emotions. Jesus wept, showing grief at the death of his friend, Lazarus.
23 As a human being, Jesus experienced emotions. Jesus was joyful.The Gospels even mention that his opponents criticized him for taking too much enjoyment at festive occasions.But it was important to Jesus to celebrate joyful times with his friendsand loved ones.
24 As a human being, Jesus experienced emotions. Jesus showed anger.When we see injustice or harm, our anger should move us to action. This happened for Jesus as well. Jesus rebuked Peter for suggesting that he turn away from the path of suffering. He was angered by his opponents for their stubbornness. And Jesus’ anger moved him to clear the money changers out of the Temple for their lack of respect.
25 As a human being, Jesus experienced emotions. Jesus needed time alone, but also enjoyed human companionship.He often withdrew from the crowds to find time for solitude, but Jesus also chose companions to help him in his ministry.
26 As a human being, Jesus experienced emotions. Jesus was troubled, distressed, and sorrowful.When his friends betrayed and deserted him, when he contemplated the suffering that awaited him, and when he was at the point of death; Jesus experienced the most painful of human emotions.
27 As a human being, Jesus experienced emotions. Jesus showed compassion.When he encountered peoplewho were hurting from illness, poverty, or sin; his emotion moved him to help them.He brought about many miraculous cures, forgave people’s sins, and showedconcern for the welfare ofhis followers.
28 Jesus’ dynamic personality had a definite effect on the people he encountered. Crowds of people flocked to him to hear what he had to say about God’s Kingdom. Sinners, children, and regular people all were drawn to Jesus.
29 Jesus’ dynamic personality had a definite effect on the people he encountered. Some of the religious authorities, however, saw him as a threat. Because he taught with his own authority, and not merely by quoting other teachers, Jesus drew fierce criticism from many leaders in the Jewish community.
30 As a human being, Jesus was a member of a family As a human being, Jesus was a member of a family. But did Jesus have siblings?The Gospels mention “brothers and sisters” of Jesus, but the Church does not understand these to be children of Jesus’ mother, Mary.It could be that “brothers and sisters” refers to cousins or other close relatives. The Church teaches that Mary remained a virgin, and had no children other than Jesus.
31 Jesus Spoke about His Divinity In addition to the evidence of how Jesus fulfilled Old Testament prophecy, Jesus himself gave testimony about who he was.
32 Old Testament prophets describe many details about the coming Messiah. Isaiah Zechariah EzekielJesus fulfills their prophecy with remarkable accuracy. On every account, the divine credentials of Jesus are established.
33 The life of Jesus follows the pattern predicted by the prophets. Jesus came from the family heritage they specified. His miracles—deeds that cannot be explained by ordinary human intervention—verify that he is the Son of God. Even his passion and death fulfill what the prophets predicted about the Messiah.
34 Jesus, too, made prophecies about his own future that came to pass. He predicted that he would be betrayed by one disciple and denied by another. He also predicted his own suffering and death.
35 We should pay attention to what Jesus says about himself. Very often, Jesus spoke of himself as the Son of Man. In the Old Testament, this title is often a humble reference to a human being, as distinct from God. Jesus attaches this title to proclamations about his unique relationship with God, and his return in glory at the end of the world.
36 We should pay attention to what Jesus says about himself. Jesus’ use of the title is in line with its use in the Book of Daniel, in which the Son of Man is a supernatural figure who will come to serve as the judge of all humanity.Jesus may have been emphasizing that he was human like us, but alsodivine and sent by God.
37 We should pay attention to what Jesus says about himself. Jesus identified himself with the prophecy of Isaiah 52: :12 about the Suffering Servant. He proclaimed himself as the one who would suffer and die so that all people might have abundant life.
38 We should pay attention to what Jesus says about himself. In the synagogue in Nazareth, Jesus read the scripture passage predicting that the Messiah would come to bring about God’s justice and mercy: “…He has sent me to proclaim liberty to captives, and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, and to proclaim a year acceptable to the Lord.”
39 We should pay attention to what Jesus says about himself. When he finished reading, Jesus rolled up the scroll and said, “Today this scripture passage is fulfilled in your hearing.”
40 We should pay attention to what Jesus says about himself.
41 We should pay attention to what Jesus says about himself. When Jesus asked the apostles who they thought he was, and Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God,” Jesus responded, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah. For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father”—verifying Peter’s conclusion about Jesus’ divine identity.
42 Jesus Demonstrated His Divinity In addition to his words, Jesus showed his divinity by what he did.
43 All the Gospels proclaim that Jesus performed miracles. As the Catechism of the Catholic Church points out, these miracles, or “signs” strengthen faith in the One who does the Father’s works—they bear witness that he is the Son of God.
44 All the Gospels proclaim that Jesus performed miracles. The greatest miracle of allwas Jesus’ own Resurrection from the dead.No one before or since has raised anyone from the dead the way Jesus did—and Jesus’ own Resurrection is the crowning truth of our faith. The value of Christianity rests on the truth of Christ’s Resurrection.
45 All the Gospels proclaim that Jesus performed miracles. Jesus could have cured the sick with a whispered word or even a glance, but he used his physical touch to convey healing.When he cured the man born blind, he spat on the ground, made a paste with the clay and his saliva and smeared it on the man’s eyes. He then told him to go and wash in the pool of Siloam.
46 All the Gospels proclaim that Jesus performed miracles. The scribes and Pharisees were so prejudiced against Jesus that they refused to believe he had cured the man born blind.They were like people today who deny Jesus’ miracles; ultimately denying God’s power to intervene on earth, and denying that God became man in Jesus Christ.
47 Jesus also demonstrated his divine nature by forgiving sins. In curing the paralyzed man at Capernaum, Jesus showed that he had power to heal our inner brokenness—our sinfulness—as well as our physical brokenness.When Jesus claimed to be able to forgive sins, however, his opponents accusedhim of blasphemy.
48 Jesus also demonstrated his divine nature by forgiving sins. It was the charge of blasphemy at his trial that ultimately led to Jesus’ crucifixion and death. The leaders of Israel could not believe that an ordinary man could claim to do all that Jesus claimed.But Jesus was no ordinary man.