On the Incarnation

Something of what it is to be fully human comes about by an identification with that which is divine; so there is something of what it is to be God that comes about by an identification with what is human. Let me develop this further, for it will deeply inform and challenge our understanding of Christ and the Trinitarian God. It would suggest that the incarnation is not fully realised by God becoming human (in Jesus of Nazareth). The incarnation is only fully realised by the God-made-man absorbing into himself all human beings, through the offering of his flesh and blood. The incarnation is only fully realised by the participation of God in human life and the participation of human life in God…Two Christological points proceed from this…First, Jesus is only the Christ in relation to other human beings; the act of redemption is a relational act; Christology needs to pay more attention not to the identity of the God-man, but to the redemptive operation effected in and through this complex co-abiding. Secondly, though I would insist on a profound difference between the human and divine, there must exist within the nature and self-understanding of the Trinity, a quality that has affinity with what it is to be human. To create human beings there must abide in God an image and likeness of what it is to be human that Christ incarnates.

-Graham Ward, Christ and Culture (Oxford: Blackwell Publishing, 2005), 105, 106.