I’ve added this video as a supplement to my last post because who we say Christ is, and understanding our union with Him, is critically important to understanding the good news that brings great joy. A lot of people don’t like John Crowder because of his delivery style, but his theology, especially his Christology, is pretty solid. Ironically, many modern “Bible-believing” evangelicals seem a bit weak in this area and might just learn something here.
While he comes off a lot stronger than I would, I would have to generally agree with Crowder’s assessment on how Arianism and pagan Greek dualism has crept into our modern evangelical theology. There’s a lot of misinformation and historical revisionism propagated on the Internet by modern skeptics about this, but Trinitarian Christology was a non-negotiable with the early church fathers and, for this reason, their tireless defense of it over the first three centuries culminated in the Nicene Creed, the foundational proclamation of Christian orthodoxy. Who we say Jesus is, is the foundation to our faith (Matt.16:13-20), and undermining it undermines everything else we believe.
Crowder pokes at the following popular doctrines where he says Arianism has undermined our theology. I’ve been critical of these popular doctrines myself (linked to relevant posts and resources below) for the same reasons he suggests.
- Penal Substitutionary Atonement
- Separation from God
- Eternal Functional Subordination (from “Think Theology” blog)
All of these relatively modern innovations, no matter how we try to nuance them, separates the Trinity in some fashion, and separates us from God. I’ll let Crowder explain why. And while you may be tempted to simply reject outright what he has to say (because it contradicts what you were taught), be a good Berean and see if these things are so.