Rev. Norman Sulaica, Jr. grew up in San Antonio, Texas. He attended Texas Lutheran University in Seguin, TX and Trinity Lutheran Seminary in Columbus, OH.
Pastor Norm, his wife, Laura, and their four children joined the Our Savior Family in 2003.
Grace and peace be unto you from our Savior, Jesus the Christ. Amen
1 John is a letter written with unique messages. One good example is 1 John 4:1, “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.”
The author of 1, 2, and 3 John is John the Apostle, who is also known as the “elder”. His letter was inscribed around 85-95 AD to the people of Asia Minor. We know this region as modern-day Turkey. John is encouraging the faithful in the midst of controversy.
What is the problem? The controversy is “false teachers teaching falsely”. The issues of the early Christian debated was, “Is Jesus human or divine?” Some argued that Jesus could only be human, because he was the child of Mary and Joseph. He was flesh and bones. He died on the cross. Now, others argued Jesus was only divine. Why? Because God called him his Son at the River Jordan. He was resurrected on the third day, and he ascended to heaven. This argument persisted in the early church for several hundred years. Irenaeus (130-200AD), who was a student of Polycarp and Polycarp was a student of John the Apostle, confronted the issue of Jesus being human or divine. His adversary was Cerinthus. Cerinthus taught Jesus was a man among men. Jesus was a superior man, but still merely a man. In baptism, the heavenly being Christ entered Jesus, but left him just before his suffering and death on the cross. Cerinthus’ teachings were problematic and harmful to the scriptures. Yet, they illustrate the question of Jesus as divine or human.
John and his disciples (Polycarp and Irenaeus) challenged both camps, human or divine, with the truth. What is the truth? Jesus the Son of Mary and God is human and divine. Jesus is 100% human, and he is also 100% divine. Christ Jesus, who is God in the flesh, takes on human form so that the price for our sin can be paid for us with his holy blood. His divinity is noted as he raises himself from the dead from the grave to gift us with eternal life. The question is not an “either or” question, “Is Jesus human or divine?”. For John the Apostle, the truth is a “both” Statement: Jesus is fully human and fully divine. John’s caution to us is people exist with agendas to misrepresent God. Our time in worship, prayer, private Bible Study, and group Bible Study opens our soul to the true word of God. Being in God’s word enables us from being moved to false teaching. Our Lenten journey begins March 6th with Ash Wednesday Service at 7 pm. Our worship theme is “Behold the Man”. Our worship services will center on the truth of Jesus, our Savior. Please plan to join us!
God bless you!
OUR SAVIOR LUTHERAN CHURCH
Pastor Norms' Thoughts