1/30/2008 - Beeson Professor lectures about Jesus as human
The essential doctrine of Christianity is that Jesus was fully human and fully God, according to Beeson Divinity School adjunct professor Dr. James Earl Massey.
"The basis of salvation is that Jesus was like us in every way," Massey said. "We look at him and see our own possibilities. Our lifestyle is based on his life among us, and we follow him to discover God's light on our path day-by-day."
Massey served as guest lecturer for Judson College's annual Christian Emphasis Week Jan. 22-24.
Now retired in Greensboro, Massey is a Detroit native and was ordained in the Church of God in Anderson, Ind. He graduated from the Detroit Bible College (now William Tyndale College), Oberlin Graduate School of Theology and received his doctorate from Asbury Theological Seminary.
Massey served 24 years as founding pastor of the Metropolitan Church of God in Detroit and concurrently for several years as campus minister at Anderson University. He was appointed radio speaker for the Church of God "Christian Brotherhood Hour" for more than five years which included 400 radio stations throughout the English-speaking world.
He taught at Anderson University and at Tuskegee University before becoming adjunct professor of preaching at Beeson.
Massey's theme at Judson was "Jesus and Ourselves." He used the three major lectures to explore the meaning of this relationship.
"The Bible affirms Jesus was like us in every way," Massey said. "He was raised in a family, knew sibling rivalry, he was poor, homeless and part of an oppressed minority in first century Palestine. He understood life from the underside."
Massey said that Jesus' humanity made him approachable, but his deity makes salvation possible for humankind.
"Jesus was on a pilgrimage in life--a pilgrimage that culminated in his death--and he faced dire perils at every step," Massey said. "But his ultimate purpose was to be the author of eternal salvation. He helps us apprehend God."
In his final lecture Massey took the story about Moses from Hebrews 11 as an example of a Christ-centered life.
"The text says Moses was willing to suffer the reproach of Christ," Massey said. "The writer is telling us that Moses' rejection of the privileges of power as the son of Pharaoh's daughter, and his decision to follow God's leadership to an unknown future, is the same kind of decision we're confronted with. We must resist the temptation to be a pharaoh. We're called to be servants to the world in Christ's name."
In addition to the three main lectures, Massey visited religion classes to lecture and take questions from students.
Article courtesy of the Judson College Public Relations Department