The mystery of the incarnation
Ronald Nash writes in his book, Worldviews in Conflict that if ever there were a contradiction in the Christian worldview, the incarnation would be it. According to the doctrine of the incarnation, Jesus is fully God and fully man. That means he is both infinite and finite. That seems like a blaring contradiction, doesn't it?
There are four ways to handle this problem. One way is to admit it's a contradiction and reject the doctrine of the incarnation. If you take this approach, then it brings up other issues. If the incarnation is false, and if the Bible teaches the incarnation, then the Bible has errors. So now you've got to reread the Bible and see if it really does teach the doctrine of the incarnation.
A second way is to admit it's a contradiction and claim that logic doesn't apply to God, or that God is beyond logic, or something like that. The problem with this approach is that it basically makes logic null and void throughout creation. If logic doesn't apply to God, then God can do the logically impossible. If God can do the logically impossible, then we can never really be sure that any contradiction indicates error. If God created it all, then he could've created it with contradictions built in. Consequently, we can't even say that other worldviews are false. God could've made it to where they're all true, even if they contradict each other. "But the Bible says that Jesus is the only way and the only truth!" Sure, but if God can do the logically impossible then it may be the case that Jesus is the only way, and Jesus is also not the only way. "But the Bible says that other religions are false." Sure, but if God can do the logically impossible, then other religions can be true even if they are false.
A third way is to show that the incarnation is not really a contradiction. I think this is fairly easy to do, and doing it doesn't require that we are able to really understand how it all works out. The law of non-contradiction states that two propositions cannot both be true at the same time and in the same sense. If Jesus was infinite in the same sense that he was finite, then that would be a contradiction. But in the incarnation, Jesus is infinite with respect to his divinity and finite with respect to his humanity. He has two natures. So he is not both infinite and finite in the same sense. Now how the two natures fit together is a mystery, not in the sense that it's a contradiction, but merely in the sense that we simply don't know how it fits together. This is a legitimate use of "mystery." We've shown there is no contradiction; we just happen to lack some information about the details.
A fourth way is to punt to "mystery," in the sense of "That's a contradiction I just can't resolve." I already said what I thought of this approach in an earlier blog.