By Chris Lopez
The angel who informed Mary that she was going to bear a special and precious child told her: “The Holy Spirit shall come upon you and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; therefore also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God” (Luke 1:35). When that precious Son was baptized, the voice of the Father in Heaven affirmed, “This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3:17). The Gospel of Mark begins, “The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God” (Mark 1:1).
Near the conclusion of the gospel of John it reads, “But these are written that you might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name.Surely the words, “Son of God” are among the most amazing words spoken by man, or angel, or even by God Himself! The relationship between a father and a son has great meaning and powerful sentiments. Kindly consider how much more significant it is when the eternal Word was to take human form, He was known as “the Son of God” (John 1: 1-18). The words, “the Son of God” declares, the identity, the essence, the relationship with God the Father and the authority of Jesus Christ.
“Son of God” Speaks of Jesus’ identity
Matthew’s gospel stated that, “Mary was espoused to Joseph, but before their union, Mary was found to be with child of the Holy Spirit”(Matthew1:18). Then angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph to assure him that the child was of divine origin and directed them when the Son was born, “you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21)s This instruction of naming the child Jesus was fulfilled on the eight day after the circumcision of the child was accomplished (Luke 2:21).
His name was known but that did not settle his identity. Jesus was identified as the Christ which is derived from the Greek word, “Christos” which means anointed or anointed one; in Hebrew language of the Old Testament, the term is “Messias” translated Messiah as the gospel of John states, “One of the two who heard John speak, and followed Him, was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother. He first found his own brother Simon, and said to him, “We have found the Messiah” (which is translated the Christ) (John 1:40, 41). This is an important element in the identity of Jesus in that He is the Christ, the promised Messiah.
Equally important is the second component of His identity: He is the Son of God. Once in a gathering with His chosen few, Jesus asked them, “Whomdo men say that I, the Son of Man, am?” (Matthew 16:13). Jesus wanted to know what the masses thought of Him. It was clear that the people considered Jesus to be a Prophet. Jesus asked his close followers in regards to his identity to which Peter responded, “You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God” (Matthew 16:16).
This was confirmed by Jesus in His trial (Matthew 26: 63-66) and emphasized by God in the transfiguration of Christ on the mountain (Luke9:28-36). The Apostle Peter recounts this incident in ( 2 Peter1:16-17). The Resurrection of Jesus from the dead (Romans 1:3-4, 10:9; Ephesian 1:20, 1 Peter 1:21) is another absolute proof that Jesus is the Son of God. Today we must be interested in what those around us think of Jesus and bring them to a proper understanding of Jesus’ Identity.
“Son of God” Speaks of Jesus’ Essence
The phrase, “Son of God is misunderstood as some have assigned the ordinary meaning that relates to physical procreation thus giving rise to doctrines that oppose the scriptures. A carnal misconception of the Bible’s claim of Jesus’ relationship to the Heavenly Father and leads to denying the eternal existence of Christ and His Deity. This gives rise to the false claim that the son as created by the Father when in reality Jesus is of the same essence as the Father. He is deity. The phrase, “son of” can mean, “offspring of,” it also carries the meaning, “of the order of.” Thus in the Old Testament, “son of the prophets” (1 Kings 20:35) and “sons of the singers” meant of the order of the prophets or singers respectively. The designation, “Son of God” when used of our Lord means of the order of God and is a strong and clear claim to full Deity. This explains why the Jews sought to kill Him when He said, “My Father has been working until now, and I have been working”(John 5:17-18) as this statement means Jesus is equal to God in essence. “I and My Father are one” (John 10:30). Jesus’ statement, “Most assuredly I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM” (John 8:58) caused the people to pick up stones. Consider 1 Timothy 3:16, Philippians 2:5-11, and Hebrews 1:1-14 which declare the Deity of Christ.
“Son of God” Speaks of Jesus’ Relationship with the Father
The first way that a person becomes a son is through a begetting process. The Scriptures make references to Jesus being the Son through begetting (John 1:14, Hebrews 1:5, Luke 1:30-32, 34-35). The second way one can become a son is through designation. The role of Jesus as the Son of God is through His submission to God’s will (John 5:30, 6:38), thus He became the extension of the Father (John 14:9, Colossians 1:15). The Son is the appointed heir of all things (Hebrews 1:2), Christ’s faithfulness to God’s appointment and a Son over His own house (Hebrews 3:2-6). We can conclude that the attaining the role of “son” was connected to submission (Philippians 2:6-8). It is by grace that we are adopted and thus designated His children (1 John 3:1). We are begotten in Christ through the gospel. (1 Corinthians 4:15, 1 Peter 1:23)
“Son of God” Speaks of Jesus’ Authority.
“Jesus said, ‘All Authority is given to Me in heaven and on earth’” (Matthew 28:18). “He was received up into heaven, and sat down at the right hand of God” (Mark 16:19b). Please read 1 Peter 3:21, 22, Ephesians 1:20-22. The authority of Jesus is clearly seen in His role in providing salvation to mankind.
1) Sacrifice and offering (Ephesians 5:2)
2) High priest’s continual offering of the sacrifice (Hebrews 7: 20 -27)
3) Mediator of a better covenant (Hebrews 9: 11-15)
4) Better covenant and promises (Hebrews 8:6)
5) Judge (John 12:48, Acts 17:31)
6) Revealer (Hebrews 2:3)
Jesus is indeed “the author and finisher of our faith” (Hebrews 12:2).
We must accept John 20:31 and that we must confess Christ in order to be saved ( Matthew10:32, Romans 10:10, Acts 8: 37). We discern the love of God (1 John 4:19) and are motivated by God’s love (1 John 4:9,10). Jesus is our example (1 Corinthians 11:1). Respect the authority of Jesus (Matthew 28:18-20, John 5:23) through obeying his message (John 12:48) from the heart (Romans 6: 17). Let these words ring clear in our ears as they rang out on the mountain top: “This is My beloved Son, hear Him.”