Concordia Theological Monthly

Publication Date


Document Type



creation, doctrine, theology, christian, confessions, creature, protestant, revelation, creeds, mysticism, orthodox, christological

Submission Type

Bible Study; Lecture; Sermon Prep


The fundamental category in the Biblical doctrine of man is the category "creature." Whatever else Christian theology may have to say about the nature and destiny of man, it says in the limits described by that category. Its picture of man as sinner, therefore, must portray him as a fallen creature. It must not make him a creature of Satan because of his sin. Nor dare theology forget that it is precisely man's creaturely derivation from God that makes his sin so calamitous. Because the category "creature" is so fundamental, orthodox Christian theology has always felt compelled to draw a line beyond which mysticism is not permitted to go. In a manner reminiscent of mysticism, it promises that its adherents become "partakers of the divine nature" (2 Peter 1:4). But, unlike classical mysticism, it insists that such participation does not abolish but rather confirms the creaturely character of the participant. From these and similar relationships it would appear that for Biblical theology man is fundamentally man the creature, be he innocent, fallen, or saved.


Religious Thought, Theology and Philosophy of Religion

Scripture References in this Resource (separated by semi-colons)

2 Peter 1:4; Matthew 12:12; 1 Corinthians 15:39; Romans 3:4; Acts 10:26; Acts 12:22-23; Matthew 16:23; 1 Corinthians 1:23;

Submission Cost


Submission Audience

Laity; Ministers; Scholars