Sunday, December 22, 2019

What Does Only-Begotten Son Mean?

John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” Many people don’t understand what the term “Only-Begotten Son” means. They think God had only one Son in heaven and sent Him to earth. WRONG.

The Greek word for “only begotten” is monogenes and meansuniquely bornor one-of-a-kind birth.” The conception and birth of Jesus was unique—nothing like it had ever happened before and will never happen again in the future. He was conceived in the womb of a virgin by the Holy Spirit and is the only one born with two natures—divine and human. Jesus was all God and all man.

1. Jesus existed as “the Word” in eternity past. 
Jesus always existed as God in eternity past. Micah 5:2 says His days are from eternity. John 1:1 says, “In the beginning was the Word (this was His name before “Jesus”) and the Word was with God (the Father), and the Word was God.”  Jesus pre-existed as God and left His throne in heaven to come to earth and become man.

2. When Jesus left heaven to take on a human body, “the Word” became “the Son.”
Cults teach that a father is older than a son, so Jesus must have come into existence at a point in time.  The Bible does not teach this. Jesus has always existed as God in eternity past, and the term “Son” refers to His humanity which began at His Incarnation. John 1:14 says, “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” The angel Gabriel told Mary, “You will conceive in you womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Highest.” (Luke 1:31-32)

Dr. Walter Martin, author of The Kingdom of the Cults, writes:
"There is no such thing as 'the eternal Son of God.' Before Jesus took upon Himself a human form, He already existed with the Father. Hebrews 1:5-6 says that when He brings the first-begotten into the world, He says, 'I will be a Father to Him, and He will be a Son to Me. This is a reference to the Incarnation. It is a change of relationship when the Word takes on flesh—the Word becomes the Son.”

The terms "Father" and "Son" describe the first two Persons of the Trinity, God and Jesus, after Christ came to earth. This proves that the terms “begotten” and “sonship” refer to His humanity and not His divinity. As God, He had no beginning, was not begotten, and was not a Son. As man, He was begotten in the flesh and became the Son.
BIBLE STUDY The Pre-Existence of Jesus

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Making Life Count Ministries
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