Unity of Flesh

16 May, 2008

Although these ideas need more development, I am strongly growing in the thought that salvation requires complete unity in the Holy Trinity and this includes unity of flesh. We must be one flesh with the Trinity that is one flesh with the Son of God.

Flesh is something that both unites and divides. It unites all men coming from a common ancestor but it also divides being material and limited by time and space. In Christ, the unity is confirmed and the division overcome in His flesh for those united to Him and partaking of His flesh. For those not so partaking, although they remain united to the human race as such, they remain separated with the space/time bound flesh of death inherited from the fallen Adam. This body is not capable of sharing in the unity of the Trinity because it is a body divided. Only in Christ is one united again with both Christ and all others in Christ.

This need for physical unity in the flesh, as well as faith and love, is the reason for the necessity of the Mysteries, especially Baptism and the Eucharist, and the twin nature of the Mysteries being both material and spiritual. Unless one is born again in Baptism and partakes of the Body and Blood of Christ, one is not united with Christ in flesh and remains separate from Him regardless of how “holy” one is, although true holiness can only be found in Christ with participation in the Holy Spirit and deifying grace. The Church through this takes on a very physical presence and unity on earth as well as in heaven. It is a physical but spiritualised body, the Body of Christ, in each member and as a whole. Coming into the Church and participating in the Church as physical as well as spiritual events. The body participates in the spiritual life as well as the soul or intellect.

Even though the Mysteries are not merely physical but also spiritual, fulfilled in the Spirit, they are nevertheless physical. Connection to Christ and the Church must involve a physical connection, not just a spiritual one. There is no way around this without denying the physical nature of humanity and the need for physical unity. Salvation is not merely an individual exercise for those who believe and are holy but also a corporate exercise, one that involves being part of a Body, physically. The Sons of God were the family of descended from Seth, the holy line that in a way remained in Christ, the rest of humanity, the sons of men were separated from this. The family shared a physical unity. Later this family ending in Abraham was extended to a nation, Israel, the chosen people of God united in physical connection to the nation and in physical symbols of this. Salvation was with the Jews. Then in Christ, salvation was extended to all nations but only in Him, only in Baptism and in the Mysteries with those becoming one flesh, one Body with Him.

Our physical humanity at once is a burden of separation, we must physically get to the Church, but it also opens a unity with God in Christ and a unity with the whole of creation that can only come through this physically humanity which is spiritualised in Christ, transcending itself while remaining itself.