Pentecostal Kenotic Christology Part 1

Over the next few days I will post a series on Pentecostal/Kenotic Christology, today is the first post.

The Incarnation of Christ is a peculiar thing, it has perplexed many theologians over the years. For Pentecostals, the Incarnation is something either neglected for studies in the Person and work of the Holy Spirit, or adapted from evangelical theology. Pentecostals have not established a firm Christology that is inherantly their own. However, in recent theological past, an idea arose to explain the incarnation in terms that would be advantageous to Pentecostal Christology. One of the main proponents of this idea was Gottfried Thomasius. Thomasius argues that, “The incarnation involves kenosis, the deliberate setting aside of all divine attributes, so that, in the state of humiliation, Christ has voluntarily abandoned all privileges of divinity.”[1] The justification of this is found in Philippians 2:7a, “ἀλλὰ ἑαυτὸν ἐκένωσεν… But Himself He emptied…” This voluntary act of self-emptying was a deliberate act to reach humanity with His love. If salvation was to occur within humanity, this self-emptying was completely necessary in order for him to sympathize with us. Hebrews 4:15 states, “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin (ESV).”
[1]Alister McGrath, Christian Theology, 303.