Monday: The Son of God
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Image © Lars Justinen from GoodSalt.com

Image © Lars Justinen from GoodSalt.com

The title Son of God was used not only by Gabriel (Luke 1:35) but also by several people when addressing Jesus (Matt. 14:33, Mark 15:39, John 1:49, John 11:27). He accepted that title but was very careful not to apply it directly to Himself, lest He be stoned to death. Nevertheless, the Bible does reveal in different ways His special relationship with the Father.

The Father acknowledged Jesus as His Son at His baptism (Matt. 3:17); the same as at the Transfiguration (Matt. 17:5).

Their Father-Son relationship is unique. Christ is the only Being in the universe who enjoys that kind of relationship, because only He is of the very same nature as the Father. As believers, we have been granted the privilege of becoming children of God. But Jesus always was, is, and will be the Son of God.

What do the following texts reveal about the perfect unity of the Father and the Son? Matt. 11:27, John 3:35, John 5:17, and John 10:30.

The complete unity of Jesus and the Father includes a mutual and perfect knowledge of each other: a unity of will, purpose, and objectives. Moreover, it includes a unity of nature. The Son and the Father are two persons (I and the Father ) but of the same nature (are one ), a fact emphasized by the neuter pronoun one (compare with 1 Cor. 3:8).

We have to be aware, however, that because He came to live as a man, Christ while here voluntarily subordinated Himself to the Father (Phil. 2:6-8). This limitation was functional but not part of His essence Himself. Jesus subordinated Himself for a specific purpose, a specific goal.

With this concept in mind we can understand why Jesus said: the Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He sees the Father do (John 5:19, NKJV); because I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me (John 5:30, NKJV). From this functional point of view, He could say: My Father is greater than I (John 14:28, NKJV).

Jesus was fully God and fully human. What does this amazing truth tell us about the close link between heaven and earth? What comfort can we draw from this close connection?

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Monday: The Son of God — 31 Comments

  1. Jesus is God, as much as the Father is God (John 1:1-3), even though the Son has subjected himself to the Father, even before the creation of humans (Hebrews 1:2), and will be after redemption is complete (1 Corinthians 15:27). The love of Jesus is the love of the Father. These things we do well to believe.

    Still the question remains, what difference does it make? Does it especially matter to the untold number of people who are starving, constantly persecuted or abused, or suffering some other form of woe with little or no hope of relief?

    Practically, the main difference (global) is in the Resurrection secured by the Cross, a hope beyond this life. For some this will not be enough. They need to see results now. Still there is an immediate benefit.

    In the parable of the prodigal son the father loved both sons. They both acknowledged the father and his care. There was a noticeable benefit to one son, but apparently little effect on the other. The father’s love did not seem to transform the elder son.

    Jesus through the parable would have us understand that claiming the love of God (which is available to all) is the first step, but is futile if it stops there. Whether or not we believe God loves us He will still love us. A difference is made when His love does something in and through us; when we become channels of His love and are moved to address the needs of others.

    This is the immediate effect which brings limited present relief of suffering, and more importantly give others hope in the Resurrection. When silver and gold fail, as they will, it becomes us to keep sharing the blessed hope (Acts 3:6; 1 Corinthians 15:19).

    Let us share Jesus in the last message, the Three Angels Message to a world dying daily in sin;, and let us die daily to Christ.

    Like(28)
  2. When did Christ become the "Only Begotten Son of God"?
    Was Christ the only begotten Son of God before He was born/begotten?
    What does "begotten" mean?
    Can I be a son of God?
    If so, how?
    What is the difference between begotten and created?

    “When Adam came from the Creator’s hand, he bore, in physical, mental, and spiritual nature, a likeness to his Maker. ‘God created man in His own image’ (Genesis 1:27), and it was His purpose that the longer man lived the more fully he should reveal this image--the more fully reflect the glory of the Creator. All his faculties were capable of development; their capacity and vigor were continually to increase.” (Ed. 15.1)
    The physical, mental, and spiritual nature of God were given to Adam when he came from the Creator’s hand. God created man in His own likeness and in His own image physically, mentally, and spiritually. When Satan succeeded in debasing the image of God in humanity, this does not mean that Satan erased the image of God from humanity, but rather he lowered the moral character of humanity instead of what God had prepared man for--which was to ever improve his character and experience in the image of God.

    It appears to me that Jesus was fully human just as we are and yet had the Holy Spirit as His sole motivation as Adam did in the beginning and as all children of God do. This produced the Mind of God in Him Which is the mind of the Father. Could it be that Jesus was just like us when the Holy Spirit motivates us and we also have a mind like Christ and the Father when we are motivated by His Spirit to think and feel like Him?

    Like(8)
    • Here's my take on some of the questions.

      When did Christ become the "only begotten son"?
      "Begotten" denotes birth. This happened in Bethlehem.
      Was Christ the only begotten before he was born?
      In the beginning was the word and the word was God. (John 1:1) Christ was always, just as the father has always been. Cannot explain that part though. Too big for my brain to understand.
      Begotten means born. Christ was only born as a man, not as GOD. He has always been that.
      Can I be a son of God? When we are born again and partake of the Divine nature like Jesus partook of ours.
      Created vs begotten? Both have a definite beginning, but in procreation, two people are required.

      Like(3)
      • I would add that scripture tells us that Jesus "made all things" and that nothing was made without Him. So if the Divine Being that came as a human babe was originally made, He would have to have made(created) Himself. If a God can create Himself, there would be many more of them I would think.(yes, many think themselves as a god, and do this when they reject the only true God and His appointed ways)

        Yes, Jesus is the only being to have a Divine Father and created mother. He is the only Son who can be equal with God while in the likeness of flesh.

        Like(2)
    • Donald, I believe it is important to recognize that the fully divine-fully human being, Jesus Christ, did not exist before the incarnation.

      Before the incarnation, the second Person of the Godhead appeared as Jehovah and "the Angel of the Lord." He was fully divine, and not human at all.

      I believe the term "Son of God" became realized at the incarnation, as Jesus Christ was born as a fully new and unique Person.

      Like(3)
  3. The son of God brings to my awareness a cohesive relationship between father and son. When Jesus declared that he and the father are one, I cannot miss seeing their united goals for us. They work together to bless and save us, to deliver us from the destructive influences of principalities, and powers and rulers or darkness of this world. Have you considered that if God were flesh and blood like Jesus he would have died for us? Now that I am looking at this godhead concept in dept, I think whenever I violated God's command, I would have offended both God, his Son, and the Holy Spirit - six disappointed eyes are looking at me.

    Like(11)
  4. Thannk-you, our Heavenly Father for gving us your Son. And thank-you for making Him the One. Also thank-you Jesus for standing firm to Your trials, and paying the ultimate sacrifice for us. You are an inspiration to us of what we can do when we allow our humamity to connect with Your devinity. Why? I do believe that this continuity will raise us into a higher atmosphere where the rich current of Your love can flow through us.
    Amen!

    Like(7)
  5. Donald has a lot of questions. I was reading from John3:34 lets us know that God gave the Spirit to Him with out measure. All humans get it with limitation except for Jesus, because he was with God from the beginning. Humans need a beginning but God has always been and will always be.>

    Like(3)
    • IMO...I would say we limit the extent to which we receive the Holy Spirit, not that God necessarily or arbitrarily limits His dwelling in us. Jesus says behold I stand at the door and knock. His presence in us is based on our choice and how many rooms we let Him enter.

      Like(6)
      • I must point out that the scripture referred to does not set some limit on the number of rooms. Jesus comes in with full access or He doesn't come in at all. There is no partial entering. We cannot be half saved or half converted. God does not deal in fractions when it comes to transforming sinners. Even one sin breaks all the law. The church is to be "without spot or wrinkle, or any such thing". This is the promise of God who cannot lie.

        Regarding the measure of the Holy Spirit given to Christ as a man and us, there is no scripture, as William suggests, that tells us there is a different measure. There might be a difference in our faith, which makes all things possible. Jesus said His followers would do greater works than He, which He did by the Holy Spirit and not by Himself. We limit the possibilities by our unbelief.

        How many trust God fully? How many would be with Jesus, sleeping soundly in a sinking ship, instead of fretting over the wind, waves and water in the boat? How are we doing with that today?

        Like(2)
  6. “All things have been delivered to Me by My Father, and no one knows the Son except the Father. Nor does anyone know the Father except the Son, and the one to whom the Son wills to reveal Him” (Mat 11:27 NKJV). This verse seems to say that there is a special relationship between the Son and the Father but it also seems to say that a similar relationship extents to a chosen group of people on earth. Even though statements such as, “what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse” (Rom 1:19-20 NKJV) and “He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust” (Mat 5:45 NKJV) because, “God shows no partiality” (Act 10:34 NKJV) exist. Should we therefore take this to mean that there is no difference between what God gives to the church and what He gives to those in the world?

    And yet Jesus also said, "Because it has been given to you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given (Mat 13:11 NKJV). To the woman at the well Jesus said, “You worship what you do not know; we know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews” (Jn 4:22 NKJV).

    All of this raises a question concerning privilege and responsibility. Does God make a distinction when it comes to knowledge? I am thinking here of the ambassadors for Christ, the repairers of the breach, the lights of the world (Mat 5:14), Gods special people (1 Pet 2:9) who are as priests in the world. Or does God give to all equally and it is up to the individual whether or not they accept what is given. The parable of the sower and the seed (Mat 13) seem to suggest that. What happened to the seed (the word of truth) depended on the soil (the heart). That which fell on the wayside was on soil that was not receptive so the seed remained exposed so that the birds could get at it and take it away. The other soils received the seed yet provided different environments, some good, some bad for the seeds to grow in. Or is it a matter of what one does with what has been given to him as it was in the parable of the talents (Mat 25:14-29). Does exercise of responsibility then bring special privilege?

    Like(5)
  7. John Nichols; we have the same opportunity that Jesus had to connect with our Heavenly Father But we are to selfish to give up our self & gave TOTAL commune with Him. It's hard to believe we could have this wonderful connection.

    Like(4)
  8. John Nichols; Jesus also put humanity when He came to this earth and had the same attributes as we do WITHOUT sinning. He was tempted & tried; he ate; he was exhausted & tired & slept; he was thirsty and drank(also drank from the Living water)which how many times do we take the time to drink of the Living water and ask God for help ALL the time even in the same areas of our lives?

    Like(3)
  9. I see that Donald has some of the very questions that I have had. I am still struggling with conceptualizing God. I feel a need to have some mental picture that goes beyond "the Father and I are one." When we get to heaven and meet God the Father, who/what will we be meeting? Does God the Father dwell solely in spirit form? If so, is he only different from the Holy Spirit in his acts? I welcome your comments.

    Like(3)
    • Tracy, many years ago I had one of our theologians get upset with me over a similar question I asked him. The problem is that the Bible says almost nothing about the physical nature of God. What it does describe is His character which according to Jn 17:3 is essential for us to know. When it says, “they may know You” (Jn 17:3 NKJV) the Bible is talking in terms of relationship and understanding because in many cases when the Bible uses that term it is in connection with sex. That is the level we are to “know” God’s character, as though we were physically married to him. In fact, the metaphor of marriage is used quite often in scripture when discussing the relationship of Christ and His church.

      Like(2)
    • God has given clear indications of Himself. He states that we are made in His likeness. This means He has a body. He is described at stretching out His hand, speaking with His mouth, seeing with His eyes and hearing with His ears. He will cast our sins behind His back and remember them no more. He sits on a throne and saves with His "victorious right arm". God is clothed with light as a garment. Do we get the picture?

      When we see Him at last He will rejoice over us with singing. We will see in Him our likeness and agree that He is our Father in every way possible.

      Some get tripped over Jesus saying "God is a Spirit", which is a poor translation of what Jesus actually was saying. God is not merely "a" Spirit, but He is living, breathing, and not just a theory or idea. He is not a mystical form that cannot be described, but has clearly described Himself(mentioned above) as being like us, or we should say rather that we are like Him. Yes, at first man was also clothed with light as a garment, and one day soon that will be restored.

      Like(1)
    • Well that will be an exciting meeting.

      Will we see God? What will He be like? Has anyone seen God?

      Consider this curious verse though:

      "Then Moses and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel went up, 10 and *they saw the God of Israel*. There was under his feet as it were a pavement of sapphire stone, like the very heaven for clearness. 11 And he did not lay his hand on the chief men of the people of Israel; *they beheld God*, and ate and drank."

      Exodus 24:10

      Also in that light about seeing God;

      "Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for *we shall see him as he is*."

      1 John 3:2

      Like(0)
  10. Brother Litchfield asked some relevant questions. I believe we are sons and daughters of God because we have been purchased by the blood of His Son Jesus adopting us and now our inheritance gives us a right to the tree of life.

    Like(3)
  11. Monogenes is the Greek word John used in John 3:16 for begotten. There were two definitions of the Greek word monogenes. The defination John used was, 'One and Only'. False teacher's would like you to believe that since John used the word begotten he was saying Christ was born from the begining therefore not divine.

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    • Not only that John, there is a text in the New Testament where Monogenes is used of Abraham’s son Isaac who was neither the first born nor the only son (Heb 11:17). Here is a technical discussion of the word from the NET Bible on Jn 3:16:

      Although this word is often translated "only begotten," such a translation is misleading, since in English it appears to express a metaphysical relationship. The word in Greek was used of an only child (a son [Luke 7:12, 9:38] or a daughter [Luke 8:42]). It was also used of something unique (only one of its kind) such as the mythological Phoenix (1 Clement 25:2). From here it passes easily to a description of Isaac (Heb 11:17 and Josephus, Ant. 1.13.1 [1.222]) who was not Abraham's only son, but was one-of-a-kind because he was the child of the promise. Thus the word means "one-of-a-kind" and is reserved for Jesus in the Johannine literature of the NT. While all Christians are children of God (τέκνα θεοῦ, tekna theou), Jesus is God's Son in a unique, one-of-a-kind sense. The word is used in this way in all its uses in the Gospel of John (1:14, 1:18, 3:16, and 3:18).

      Like(6)
    • Donald Litchfield (July 6, 2014) certainly does pose some very pertinent questions, and I believe that the explanation in his final paragraph is a good answer to the latter two questions, “Can I be a son of God?” and “If so how?”

      The discussion of the meaning of the word “Monogenes” by John Herscher and Tyler Cluthe is looking at the answer to the first three of Donald Litchfield's questions, which he does not seem to answer explicitly. I think that the answer to these questions may be summarised in Gabriel's response to the question which was asked by Mary when she was first approached by the angel. Gabriel had just told Mary that she was going to become pregnant and have a son (Luke 1:31). She asked Gabriel exactly how she could become pregnant without having sex (Luke 1:34). Gabriel then explained that she would be made pregnant by Jehovah's power, and for that reason the baby would be called the “Son of Jehovah” (Luke 1:35).

      I think that Gabriel's explanation to the young Mary was to be simple enough for her to understand, and that we should take it as such. Whatever metaphysical explanations one might like to try to attach to what happened we must remember to look at things in relation to the people on the ground, as it were. If we were alive in that time, we would see Mary as young woman going about her business. Next thing you know she's pregnant! She isn't married, so the first things that come to mind are, “Who is the father?” and, “Where can I find a hefty stone?” (Without Joseph's actions things could have gone badly for Mary.)

      I believe this is a reason why the people referred to Jesus as God's only begotten son. Because that is how it appeared for them.

      Like(3)
  12. Tyler, your question, "Should we therefore take this to mean that there is no difference between what God gives to the church and what He gives to those in the world?" helps me to remember that I am just like my counterpart in the world except for the part(s) of my life I have recognized as evil and have given over to God to correct in my character. Therefore the promises (word) of God are truly like the seeds Jesus talked about in my understanding and other people who haven't yet accepted the "word" of God as I have are just like me in some other area. All of us are just as loved by God whether in the "church" or out. I believe that some out of the church are receiving the work of the Spirit of God maybe as much as we who profess to be members of some church--maybe more in some cases. Maybe some of those go into the Kingdom before us.

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  13. William Earnhardt thank you for your correction some gods don't have limitation but I do and most people I know do.I believe in one God the Father One son Jesus Christ and One HolySpirt all three being One but different yet the same.I hope I didn't offend any with my comments.Jesus Christ to me is was very much human and is still alive and well.

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  14. John you write "Some gods don't have limitation but I do.." Please clarify that. Sounds almost like you are calling yourself a god. I am sure something must be lost in the translation.

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  15. William you are a Christian I hope you should know better. Don't twist my words. In the old testament some Kings that rule over men call them self gods. The Greeks had many gods. and so did the Egyptians . Jesus is my Lord and my God I pray that He is yours also .

    Like(1)
    • Thanks Hugh. Yes John I am sorry. No offense was intended. Please remember this site is read all around the world by people of every denomination and religion, and there are denominations that call themselves Christian who believe they will one day have their own planet and be gods of that planet. So when you say "some gods don't have limitations but I do" it sounded the same as if I said, "some men don't like football but I do." The sentence assumes I am a man, and your sentence could have been taken the wrong way. I was pretty sure I knew what you meant but wanted to let you clarify for those from other cultures and belief systems. I am sorry and please understand I meant well.

      Like(4)
    • John,
      Do take another look at what William wrote. It is unlikely his intent is to twist your words. Rather he seems to be gently nudging you to review what you wrote, as at a glance the wording allows for double meaning/interpretation.

      Given the large and diverse readership and the possibility some people engage in speed reading this is probably useful counsel we all can benefit from.

      Like(6)
  16. I have to agree with the idea that we are in the world as Jesus was when we indeed are moved by the Spirit of the Lord. On another post someone went as far as to say that we lose the Spirit when we sin, but I cannot agree with that and still consider myself to be saved.
    1 John 3:9 Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.
    3:10 In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother.
    3:11 For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another.
    3:12 Not as Cain, [who] was of that wicked one, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother's righteous.
    The sin we read about in Roman's seven is a constant sin and sinning that comes from our corruptible flesh, as it wars against the Spirit of God which dwells in us by faith, but he who is born of God...it says above, "cannot sin", "because he is born of God". I say don't be deceived, your flesh cannot serve God, it is corruptible but having by faith accepted the free gift of Christ's eternal sacrifice, you are born again into the family of God, and the things that He leads you to do is to forgive others, and teach them of God's enduring love. That is what I believe to be the seal of God mentioned in Eph.4:30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. "If you sin you have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ, the righteous." Now how confusing it that? He who is born of God, does not sin, if you sin, you have an advocate, if you sin you do not know God, with the flesh I serve the law of sin and death, all this is in the scripture, so we need faith to believe that God is good, and overcomes the evil with His love, and we ought to do the same for others. When they sin, we bless in return, maybe not in the same second because we are human as well, but we forgive, as we have been forgiven and are born of God. How else could any of us who are honest in heart understand these things. My heart waits for the day when this corruption will put on incorruption, it hasn't happened to my flesh yet, but apparently some people are above sin and dwelling in Heaven, seated with the Father in Christ and that makes them free from the law of sin and death. I am not confused, just saying, spiritual things are spiritually discerned and unless you are born of God and understand by experience how the Spirit of God works in you to will and to do the will of our Father which art in Heaven, you will never be able to succor others into a living relationship with Christ. We call God a liar if we say that we are without sin. Can an Ethiopian change his skin, a leopard its spots? When you are converted strengthen your brethren. Peter walked on water, he also denied the Lord with cursing's. We may or may not sin in the same way as he did but we do in our flesh serve the law of sin and death until He comes, our faith will have works, and more and more as we allow God to work in us, but it is a process wherein we have a helper, not one who leaves us everytime we fall, and we have to then work to get the helper back, we can't even begin to want to return to doing the will of God without His working in us through the holy spirit. We then grief the holy spirit by not allowing God to love us, and to help us to forgive others. Babble? I believe I am in the Lord, because He has promised that whosoever would believe in the Lord, shall be saved, made whole and complete in His love. Babble? I repeat as a fool in the flesh would, I am saved by grace through faith not of works lest any man should boast.

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