Without a doubt,
the most recognized,
memorized, repeated and beloved
verse in all the Bible is John 3:16
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son…
This early Christian belief in the divine Son of God
begotten of his Father in eternity and sent into the world
remained uncontested for at least two centuries after the death of Christ.
The “full deity” of Christ and the entirely separate person of the Holy Spirit, were the two final steps in cementing the Trinity doctrine into its current position of dominance in mainstream Christian theology, and the two critical features in this story.
1. Our first assignment will be a review of the Scriptural basis for the apostolic belief in one God and His Son.
And there is much in the word of God for us to consider.
2. Next we will explore the biblical evidence for the Father and Son in type and antitype.
3. Then we will follow the historical support for this “doctrine of Christ” in the early church writings.
Let us then begin by examining what Scripture records as the identity of God and His Son.
Traditional ideas may differ, but we will let the Bible speak for itself.
Well, there’s one more.
It was easily understood on the basis of His true Sonship, begotten from the Father, inheriting the very same divine nature of God. The crux of the issue (then and now) hinges on the definition of divinity. And this, again, must be defined by the words of the Bible, the word of God.
Divinity: the Nature of God
The Bible explains the nature of God in terms of His eternal existence and creative power.
“O LORD, are you not from everlasting” Habakkuk 1:12
“He is blessed from everlasting to everlasting” Psalm 12:13
“From everlasting to everlasting Thou art God” Psalm 90:2
“This God is our God forever and ever” Psalm 48:14
“The high and lofty One who inhabits eternity” Isa. 57:15
The realm of eternity is defined as that which exists before Earth’s creation.
“From everlasting, from the beginning, or ever the earth was…”
“Before the mountains were settled, before the hills” Prov 8:23-25
“Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst formed the earth and the world” Ps. 90:2
“Known unto God are all things from the beginning of the world” Acts 15:18
God is eternal because He is immortal—He cannot die.
“The King eternal, immortal” 1Tim 1:17
“Who only has immortality” 1Tim 6:16
“Who is, and was, and is to come” Rev 1:18
“I am the LORD, I change not” Malachi 3:6
“The Glory of Israel does not lie or change his mind. 1 Sam 15:29; Num 23:19
“My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips” Ps. 89:34
It is the divine character, as expressed in His law that does not change.
Jesus Christ is “the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Heb 13:8) because His character never changes.
But, even though his divine nature does not change, his form did:
from being “made so much better than the angels” (Heb 1:4)
“being in the form of God” (Phil 2:6)
he was then “made a little lower than the angels” (Heb 2:9; Ps 8:6)
“being found in fashion as a man” (Phil 2:8).
Jesus “emptied himself” “and the Word became flesh” (John 1:14)
“God manifest in the flesh.” (1Tim 3:15)
The character of Christ is not immutable; but his form is.
from the days of eternity” Micah 5:2 margin.
He was “brought forth,” “the beginning of His way,
before his works of old” Prov. 8:22, 24.
Genesis 1:1 “In the beginning”. Reading right-to-left the Hebrew transliteration is
B'rasheet bra Elohim. In-beginning created God. In Proverbs 8 the preposition b' is not
present, only resheet. YHWY cannani rasheet. Yahweh possessed-me beginning.
Cannani is the same word in Genesis 4:1 where Eve named her firstborn Cain, saying,
“I have gotten a man,” cannah gotten or possessed.
The Apostles accepted both the divinity of Christ and his eternal Sonship because he came forth from eternity. They did not question the truth of Christ’s equality with God the Father; but they did not make him equal to his Father. To do so would destroy the separate personalities and distinct identities of God and His Son.
Jesus said to the Jews who objected to his healing on the Sabbath, “My Father works hitherto, and I work. Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he not only had broken the Sabbath, but said also that God was his Father, making himself equal with God.” John 5:17, 18.
That’s why Jesus said, I and my Father are one. John 10:30.
Because he has by inheritance received a name from his Father. Heb 1:4,
Yes, God has given him a name that is above every name Phil 2:9
his Father’s name. Jesus said, “I am come in my Father’s name” John 5:43
Jesus said “My Father is greater than I” (John 14:28).
“greater” in the sense of “older”
for he also said, “he that is greatest among you,
let him be as the younger” Luke 22:26.
The eternity of the Son and the existence of the Holy Spirit is a fact of Scripture.
A divine Son (Phi. 2:6; Col. 1:15; 2:9; John 5:23; John 14:9) who comes from (John 7:29; 8:42; 16:27, 28) an Eternal Father (1Tim 1:17) must inherently possess the same eternal immortality (John 5:26) and the same eternal Spirit (Heb 9:14) because His Father is Spirit (John 4:24) and “that which is born of the Spirit is Spirit” (John 3:6) . This is the teaching of scripture.
Scripture speaks about other sons of God.
The book of Job tells us about When the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy. Job 38:7
The sons of God present themselves before the LORD Job 1:6
Adam was called the son of God Luke 3:38
We are also called sons of God Rom 8:14; 9:26; Gal 3:26; 1John 3:1
John 3:18 But Jesus is the only begotten Son of God.
John 1:14 the only begotten of the Father.
And He had only One Son, His well-beloved heir. Mark 12:1-8
The angel Gabriel told Mary that her child would be called the Son of God Luke 1:35
His cousin, John the Baptist bore record that he was the Son of God John 1:34
Nathanael confirmed that he was the Son of God John 1:48
The disciples said of a truth You are the Son of God Matt 14:33
Martha believed he was the Son of God John 11:27
Peter confessed he was the Son of the living God Matt 16:16
The Centurian—and all those with him—exclaimed, Truely this was the Son of God Matt 27:54
Even the unclean spirits and demons called him the Son of God Matt 8:29; Mark 3:11
The High Priest demanded to know if he was the Son of God Luke 22:70
Jesus replied, You say that I am. But only once did Jesus say that he was the Son of God John 10:36
The book of Hebrews chapters one and two compare the Son of God before and after coming to this earth. Chapter one describes his inheritance as the Son and by whom God made the worlds.
As Son he is the express image of his Father’s person, being so much better than the angels by inheritance. Chapter two we see Jesus, the Word made flesh, made lower than the angels for the suffering of death. But before this, he was begotten of the Father, something no angel at any time had experienced. Then the firstbegotten was brought into the world.
The unclean spirit, when he has gone out of the man
akatharton pneuma exelthon
for I came out and have come from God
ego gar ek tou theou exelthon
I-am indeed out of-the God i-have-come-out
you have believed that I from God came forth / came out
__ ‘oti ego para tou theou exelthon
___ (tou patros "from the Father" in Wescott-Hort)
I came out from the Father and have come into the world
exelthon ek / para tou patros
they…knew for sure that I came forth from you
__ ‘oti para sou exelthon
__ (that from you I came out)
In fact, the most frequent appearance of exerchomai in the Gospels is the casting out of demons, from which we get the word exorcism.
Matt 9:32,33 A dumb man possessed with a devil, and the devil was cast out
Matt 12:28 Jesus cast out devils
Matt 12:43 the unclean spirit goes out of a man
Matt 17:18 Jesus rebuked the devil; and he departed out of him
Mark 1:26 the unclean spirit came out of him
Mark 5:8 Jesus said, Come out of the man thou unclean spirit
Mark 7:30 the devil was gone out of her daughter
Mark 9:25 Dumb and deaf spirit, I charge thee, come out of him
Luke 4:33 When the devil had thrown him in the midst, he came out of him
Luke 8:2 Mary called Magdalene, out of whom went seven devils
Luke 8:29 He commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man
Luke 11:14 When the devil was gone out, the dumb man spoke
Luke 11:24 When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man…he says, I will return to my house whence I came out
Acts 16:18 Paul said to the spirit, in the name of Jesus Christ come out of her
If the exerchomai/exelthon of the Son is merely leaving the Father’s side, then the exerchomai/exelthon of the unclean spirit is also simply leaving the possessed person’s side. But the demons came out (exerchomai) of the demoniacs and into (eiserchomai) the swine. They dwell within the person they possess which they call their “house.”
Jesus spoke of this repeaatedly.
John 8:42 the Son “proceeded forth” from his Father, he told the Pharisees.
John 16:27 he “came out from God.” verse 28 he “came forth from the Father” he told the Disciples.
John 17:8 “They surely believe that I came out from Thee,” he assured his Father.
These last four texts use the same Greek word exerchomai which has in it the explicit preposition ex- meaning “out” as in “exit.”
of a country, a city, or a house. Only two times is it used in connection with people. Describing evil spirits coming “out” of a person who had been “possessed.” And These four times in speaking of the Son coming
out of the Father, who possessed His Son in the beginning.
Prov 8:22-25 The LORD possessed me, the beginning of His way, before His work of old, I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning, or ever the world was…I was brought forth… before the mountains, before the hills was I brought forth.
When? Before anything was created, from the days of eternity.
Prov 30:4 Who has established the earth?
What is his name, and what is his Son’s name?
The Creator of the earth has a Son.
Gal 4:4 Then in the fullness of time God sent forth His Son.
1John 4:9 God sent His only begotten Son into the world.
After reconciling us by his death, he now saves us by his life.
And having received the promise of his Father, Acts 2:32
Gal 4:6 God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into our hearts.
Matt 4:4 He is the living Word like “every word that proceedeth from the mouth of God”
If we love him and keep his Word, his Father will love us and they will come and make their above with us. John 14:23.
1John 1:3 Truly, our fellowship is with the Father
and with His Son Jesus Christ.
1John 5:5 He who overcomes the world is he who believes that
Jesus is the Son of God.