The doctrines of the trinity the deity of christ
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The Doctrines of the Trinity & The Deity of Christ. as revealed in John’s prologue. Have you ever found the phrase, “only begotten” confusing?. What does the word begotten mean?. OT: Producing children/offspring to bring forth; cause to exist. To procreate; to generate; to father.

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The Doctrines of the Trinity & The Deity of Christ

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The doctrines of the trinity the deity of christ

The Doctrines of the Trinity&The Deity of Christ

as revealed in John’s prologue


Have you ever found the phrase only begotten confusing

Have you ever found the phrase, “only begotten” confusing?

What does the word begotten mean?

OT: Producing children/offspring

to bring forth; cause to exist. To procreate; to generate; to father.

Have you ever heard that the Father created the Son first and then created all things through the Son?

OR

That the Father created all things, but He did so through the Son?


Word trans begotten in the nt is monogenes

9 times

Word trans. begotten in the NT is monogenes

Lu 7:12 Now as He approached the gate of the city, behold, a dead man was being carried out, the only son of his mother…

Lu 8:42 for he had an only daughter, about twelve years old…

Lu 9:38 And behold, a man from the multitude shouted out, saying, “Teacher, I beg You to look at my son, for he is my only boy…

Heb 11:17 By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac; and he who had received the promises was offering up his only begotten son;


Word trans begotten in the nt is monogenes1

Word trans. begotten in the NT is monogenes

Joh 1:14 And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.

Joh 1:18 No man has seen God at any time; the only begotten God, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has explained Him.

Joh 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.

Joh 3:18 “He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

1Jo 4:9 By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him.


And we beheld his glory glory as of the only begotten from the father full of grace and truth

…And We beheld His Glory, Glory as of the Only Begotten from the Father, Full of Grace and Truth.

contextualized Logos’ glory in incarnation

vv. 1-3He is deity, eternal, distinct from the Father, the creator.

v. 15, He is eternal.

v. 16, because of the fullness of who He is, we have received grace heaped upon grace.

v. 17superior to Moses, with a superior message.

v.18Revealer of the Trinity to man (Light, Logos)


The sonship of christ

The Sonship of Christ

Why is the incarnate Word called the Son?

How did He become the Son?

When did He become the Son?

Two positions on Sonship

  • Eternal Generation

  • Incarnational Sonship


Eternal generation

Eternal Generation

  • Contained within the Nicean Creed, A.D. 325:

    • We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, of one Being with the Father.

Dr. Elmer Towns:

[the Son] has eternally been in the process of being generated as the Son in God’s eternal day.

Theology 201 Worktext, Dr. Elmer L. Towns, Liberty University


Eternal generation cont

Eternal Generation (cont.)

Conservative proponents of eternal generation would staunchly defend that the Son has existed eternally just as the Father and the Spirit. This is called the eternality of the Son.

But somehow the Father has eternally generated the Son, though He did not create the Son.

They affirm the full deity of Christ, yet from eternity past, the Father is before the Son.

An order is both affirmed and denied.

Does this agree with NT Christology?


Why is eternal generation the most popular position

Why is Eternal Generation the most popular position?

We have only an economic view of the Trinity.

The ontological view is widely unknown.

We know the Trinity only as Father, Son, Holy Spirit & we “rank” them in this order.

  • Rank regards:

    • Position

    • Authority

    • Power

This rank is assumed backward into eternity past and so a theological position must be created that allows for a Son-to-Father submission prior to the incarnation.


Why is eternal generation the most popular position1

Why is Eternal Generation the most popular position?

The term “begotten” is confusing.

Conservative theologians agree that begotten refers to the uniqueness of the Son in His relationship to the Father.

Misunderstanding the terms, “Son of Man” and “Son of God”

These are assumed to address Jesus’ humanity and deity respectively.


Incarnational sonship

Incarnational Sonship

As I teach it:

The person of the Word, without giving up any of His deity (which would destroy the Trinity) took on human flesh becoming the God-Man (one person with two natures). Remaining fully deity, He willfully submitted Himself to the God, as a Son to a Father.


Incarnational sonship cont

Incarnational Sonship (cont.)

Four keys to understanding the glory of His Sonship.

Holding a clear distinction between personhood and nature

Comprehending Jesus’ two natures, human and divine

Understanding the term monogenes

Understanding the title Son of God


Son is a relational designation

“Son” is a relational designation

In 1.1, John uses names of persons of the Trinity.

In 1.14, John uses a relational designation: Father.

“The God” and “Father” address the same person of the Trinity.

“The Word” and “Son” address the same person of the Trinity.

“Son of God” does not argue that He is begotten of the Father,

it designates their relationship.


Sonship

The relationship between these two eternal persons changes; it is now Father to Son.

Sonship

Material

(flesh)

The Father

The God

The Word

The Son

Name: Jesus, Son of God

Title: Messiah

Office: King of Israel

Common

Divine

Nature

Immaterial

The Holy Spirit

After 1.14, John never uses the names the Word and the God.

He only uses Father and Son.


Incarnational sonship cont1

Incarnational Sonship (cont.)

“Son” means equality with, and submissiveness to a father simultaneously.

John 5.18:

For this cause therefore the Jews were seeking all the more to kill Him, because He not only was breaking the Sabbath, but also was calling God His own Father, making Himself equal with God.

We struggle to understand the equality of John 5.18 because we assume submissive means unequal.

The Inequality of Philippians 2.6 is in form only, not in nature.


In what one way is the son equal to the father

In nature.

In What One Way is the Son Equal to the Father?

John 1.3:

All things came into being by Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being.

John 10.30:

I and the Father are one.

John 5.21:

“For just as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, even so the Son also gives life to whom He wishes.

John 6.40:

“For this is the will of My Father, that everyone who beholds the Son and believes in Him, may have eternal life; and I Myself will raise him up on the last day.”


In what way is the son submissive to the father

In What Way is the Son Submissive to the Father?

Relationally, only possible through incarnation.

Philippians 2.6-7a:

who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant…

By choice, only possible through incarnation.

Jesus has a human nature. This nature is submissive to the Father: “Not my [human] will, but Yours be done.”


The glory of the incarnate logos is his sonship

The Glory of the incarnate Logos is His sonship

vv. 1-3He is deity, eternal, distinct from the Father, the creator.

v. 15, He is eternal.

v. 16, because of the fullness of who He is, we have received grace heaped upon grace.

v. 17superior to Moses, with a superior message.

v.18Revealer of the Trinity to man (Light, Logos)

The Person is eternal

None of these is true w/o incarnation. Incarnation is essential to Sonship.


What changed in this father son relationship

What changed in this Father-Son relationship?

Only changes relationally, and only at incarnation, and is by choice.

  • Rank regards:

    • Position

    • Authority

    • Power

}

Is the Word incarnate lacking in these from when He created all things?


Two positions on sonship

Two positions on Sonship

Eternal Generation

The Logos has always been the Son

The Father has generated (begotten) the Son from eternity

Incarnational Sonship

The Logos became the son at incarnation

The Logos is an eternal person of the Trinity


What does monogenes mean

The Complete Word Study Dictionary, Spiros Zodhiates Th.D.

From monos, only, and genos, stock. Unique, one of a kind, one and only.

John alone uses monogenes to describe the relation of Jesus to God the Father, presenting Him as the unique one, the only one (monos) of a class or kind (genos), in the discussion of the relationship of the Son to the Father (John 1:14, 18; 3:16, 18; 1 John 4:9).

Genos, from which genes in monogenes is derived, means race, stock, family, class or kind…This is in distinction from gennao, to beget, engender or create. The noun from gennao is gennema the result of birth.

So then, the word means one of a kind or unique.

What does monogenes mean?


What does monogenes mean1

The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, C. B. Hoch, Jr.

Scholars are divided over the legitimacy of the AV rendering “only begotten” in the six passages [addressing Jesus and Isaac]. The position against the AV translation was stated clearly by D. Moody, who insisted that monogenes means “one,” “only,” or “unique” rather than “only begotten.”

In the Vulgate Jerome changed unicus [only; unique; uncommon] to unigenitus [only begotten] for theological reasons, i.e., to ensure the doctrine that Jesus was “begotten, not made.” (In passages that lack this theological interest [Lk. 7:12, 8:42, 9:38] he kept unicus as the translation of Gk. monogenes.) The Vulgate exercised a formidable influence on the AV and subsequent English translations.

Other scholars who have taken this position…stated: “Literally the Greek means ‘of a single [monos] kind [genos].’ Although genos is distantly related to gennan, ‘to beget’ there is little Greek justification for the translation of monogenes as ‘only begotten.’” The word describes Jesus’ uniqueness, “not what is called in Trinitarian theology his ‘procession.’”

What does monogenes mean?


What does monogenes mean2

Baker’s Dictionary of Theology, Everett F. Harrison

The second half of the word is not derived from gennan, “to beget,” but is an adjectival form derived from genos, “origin, race, stock,” etc. Monogenes, therefore, could be rendered, “one of a kind.” The translation “only” will suffice for the references in Luke and Hebrews. But what about the passages in the Johannine writings? “The adjective ‘only begotten’ conveys the idea, not of derivation and subordination, but of uniqueness and consubstantiality: Jesus is all that God is, and He alone is this” (B. B. Warfield, Biblical Doctrines)…

In the Old Latin Version of the NT monogenes was rendered by unicus [only; unique; uncommon], but in the Vulgate it became unigenitus [only begotten] due to the influence upon Jerome of the Nicene Christological formulation.

What does monogenes mean?


Excerpt from the nicene creed a d 325

Excerpt from the Nicene Creed, A. D. 325

We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, of one Being with the Father.


What does monogenes mean3

The Zondervan Pictorial Encyclopedia of the Bible, R. N. Longenecker

The word monogenes, with its variations mounogeneia and mounogonos, occurs in Gr. lit. in Hesiod, the Orphic Hymns, Parmenides, Plato, Herodotus, Apollonius Rhodius, Antoninus Liberalis and in a number of Gr. inscrs. While often signifying “sole descent” or “the only child of one’s parents,” in Hesiod’s Work and Days 374, Theogony 426, 448, and the Orphic Hymns 29:2, 32:1 and 40:16, it means “peerless,” “matchless,” “of singular excellence,” “unique,” or “the only one of his/her kind,” expressions denoting quality more than descent.

In the LXX and the Jewish writings in Gr., monogenes admits of more than one interpretation: (1) “the only one,” as of Jephthah’s daughter in Judges 11:34; (3) “a priceless and irreplaceable possession,” “a highest possession,” with reference to the writer’s soul in Psalms 22:20; 35:17; and (4) “favored,” “preferred above others,” “chosen,” “unique,” of Abraham’s son Isaac in Genesis 22:2, 12, 16…

What does monogenes mean?


What does monogenes mean4

Cont.:

The NT employs monogenes nine times, and only in the later writings by authors most conversant with Gr. modes of expression. It appears in Luke 7:12, 8:42, 9:38 denoting an only son or daughter. Hebrews 11:17 employs it of Isaac in the same way as does Genesis, Jubilees, and Josephus: Abraham’s “favored,” “chosen,” or “unique” son. And this qualitative idea is uppermost in John’s use of the term in regard to Jesus in John 1:14, 18; 3:16, 18; 1 John 4:9.

Writing about the same time as John, Clement of Rome spoke of the Phoenix, that mysterious bird of the E reputed to live 500 years, as monogenes, “the only one of its kind” – which is how the term is employed of Jesus in the fourth gospel.

What does monogenes mean?


The niv accurately translates monogenes

Joh 1:14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

Joh 1:18* No-one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only, who is at the Father’s side, has made him known.

Joh 3:16* “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

Joh 3:18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.

1Jo 4:9 This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.

The NIV accurately translates monogenes


Why is understanding sonship important

Why is Understanding Sonship Important?

Eternal generation makes the Son originate from the Father.

This reasonably diminishes the incarnate Word’s full deity.

If we do not know Jesus as fully deity, our creator, then we will struggle to allow Him to be fully our Lord.

John. 5.23:

“He who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent Him.”


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