Understanding how Jesus is both God and man has challenged scholars for centuries. Another Bible question site concludes, “While a certain amount of mystery will always accompany this issue, both Scripture and, to a lesser extent, church tradition provide for us important distinctions to help us make sense of this matter.”

While there are some questions that God has not answered for us in His word, He has never given authority for “church tradition” to supplement Scripture’s authority, even if it’s applied “to a lessor extent”! God has given His word (and only His word) so that we might search, find, and know Him.

How Scripture answers "How was Jesus both God and man at the same time?"

Scripture is clear that while on earth, Jesus was both God and man2,3,7. The Holy Spirit is the intersection of how Jesus was all God5 and all man2,7 at the same time. The Son “became flesh…from the Father”2 and then, as a human, was anointed with the Holy Spirit4. Therefore, the “fullness of God”5 dwelt within a man who was “made like his brothers in every respect”6.

It’s worth noting that deity was “pleased to dwell”5 in this human. That’s because He was sinless6,7, unlike born-again Christians who, though they sin, have also been made holy by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit and are encouraged not to grieve the Spirit.

Answer built on scripture-blocks below

And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?” And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy—the Son of God. And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. For nothing will be impossible with God.”

Mary asked the angel how she could be a virgin and still give birth. The angel replied that the Holy Spirit and power from above would come upon her to produce a holy child — the Son of God. The angel also told her that Elizabeth, her cousin, had also conceived in her old age. She was considered barren but is six months along, for God makes all things possible.

The angel Gabriel (vs 26) is speaking to Mary about the child she will conceive and bear, calling his name Jesus (vs 31).

Scripture-block application to this question

Jesus was effectively consummated by a holy, non-sexual union between the Holy Spirit and Mary, a virgin woman.

Now the Word became flesh and took up residence among us. We saw his glory—the glory of the one and only, full of grace and truth, who came from the Father.
The Word [Jesus] became flesh and lived among us. We witnessed his glory – the glory of the one and only, full of grace and truth who came from the Father.

The beginning of John’s testimony of the things he witnessed about Jesus’ time on earth.

Scripture-block application to this question

Jesus was human.

Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own authority, but the Father who dwells in me does his works. Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me, or else believe on account of the works themselves.
Jesus asked the disciples if they doubted He was in the Father and the Father was in Him. They shouldn’t since His words and works were by the authority of the Father who dwelt in Him. They should believe that He and the Father were in each other because of the works He did.

Jesus and the apostles in the upper room on the eve of His trial. John’s account of this begins in chapter 13 and concludes with Jesus’ prayer in chapter 17.  Jesus has just said that He is going to prepare a place for them (vss 2-3) and Thomas has asked, “How can we know the way?” (vs 5).

Scripture-block application to this question

Jesus told the disciples that His works (e.g. deeds/behavior) were evidence that He and the Father dwelt together.

As for the word that he sent to Israel, preaching good news of peace through Jesus Christ (he is Lord of all), you yourselves know what happened throughout all Judea, beginning from Galilee after the baptism that John proclaimed: how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power. He went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him.

You already know [Cornelius and his household] what happened throughout Judea with the word — the gospel message of peace through Jesus Christ, Lord of all that He [the Father] sent to Israel. It began in Galilee and followed the baptism preached by John [the Baptist]. You know how God [the Father] anointed Jesus from Nazareth [the Son] with the Holy Spirit and power. Everywhere He [the Son] went He did good and healed those who Satan had oppressed, for God was with Him.

The church has grown among the Jewish community according to the pattern Jesus foretold (“you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” Acts 1:8).  This pivotal chapter accounts the conversion of the first Gentiles to the Way.

Peter goes on to declare that they should be baptized with water (vs 47) to enter into fellowship with them through Christ.

Scripture-block application to this question

Jesus was physically born (e.g. “of Nazareth”) – “became flesh”2 – and anointed by the Father with the Holy Spirit.

For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.
For in him [Christ] all of God’s glory was pleased to dwell.  Through Him, all things in heaven and earth are reconciled to God in peace by His blood on the cross.
Paul’s letter to the church in Colossae where he confronts false teaching in the form of “human philosophies and traditions”.  Earlier in this chapter, he references “the word of the truth, the gospel” which came to them and “indeed in the whole world it is bearing fruit and increasing” (vs 6).
Scripture-block application to this question

Jesus was filled up with God, who was “pleased to dwell” in Him.

!! scripture-block context extra important here !!

Later in the letter, Paul writes, “For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily…” (2:9).

Therefore he had to be made like his brothers in every respect, so that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in the service of God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people. For because he himself has suffered when tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.
Therefore he [Jesus] conformed to His kinsmen in all ways so that He could become a merciful and true High Priest of God, the Father, making intercession for the sins of the people. It’s because of the fact He suffered when tempted that He can intercede for those being tempted.

The writer is concluding his introductory argument of Jesus’ supremacy over all of those messengers that for the Jews have come before.  Specifically, he has contrasted Jesus against the prophets and angels by “calling forward” and interpreting several Old Testament prophecies and sayings.

Scripture-block application to this question

Jesus was not only made like His fellow Jewish countrymen “in every respect” (e.g. human, under the Law of Moses), He had to be made this way to fulfill His role of high priest, interceding on our behalf.

Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.

Be of the same mind as Christ Jesus, who, even though He was in all things God, didn’t hold on to that but became a slave by emptying Himself and being born as a man.

Paul is transitioning into a long closing in an otherwise short letter to the church in Philippi.  He has expressed his deep fondness for them (1:6-7) and encourages them throughout to have the “mind of Christ.”  His encouragement here is to remain strong in their “partnership in the gospel” (1:5) so they continue to “shine as light in the world” (vs 15).

Scripture-block application to this question

Jesus, while on earth, was born as a man.

!! scripture-block context extra important here !!

Jesus was “human” yet perfectly “obedient” to the Father. (vs 8)

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