The Anointed begotten
26. Brought into existence
“The angel Gabriel in a compact and precise statement in answer to Mary’s reasonable inquiry about pregnancy in the absence of a husband gives us a clear picture that there would be special things happening in the future: namely first there would be the holy spirit coming over Miryam or Mary. Next, still in the absence of a husband the power of the Highest will overshadow her, and for that reason precisely (dio kai) the one to be brought into existence will be called (i.e. will be) the Son of God(Luke 1:35).By around 150 AD the philosopher Justin Martyr had so badly misunderstood this that he claimed that the Son engineered his own conception.
Few Bible doctrines are supplied for our understanding and edification in such a comprehensive and comprehensible way, with “Son of God” given its exact definition. But here it is: This verse should have been allowed its monitoring and supervising position and authority as the perfect exposition of what Son of God means, and consequently who Jesus is and was. He is the Son of God, remarkably but hardly surprisingly because God was his Father by miracle. Jesus is thus son of Eve, of Abraham, of David, of Mary and at the same time of God. As Adam was also the Son of God by divine miracle and creation (Luke 3:38), so is Jesus Son of God. “God the Son” is out of the question at once, since the only and mortal Son of God, Messiah, was “brought into existence” some 2000 years ago, at a definite and predicted geographical location. Isaiah 7:14 had predicted this mighty event. It is unthinkable that Matthew and Luke knew of a “God the Son,” uncreated, who left heaven and walked on the earth, while a coequal God the Father remained in heaven. That would be an obvious doubling of God. (Modalist Unitarians, in a desperate attempt to hide a threatening duality in God, said “the Son IS the Father.”)”
27. The plot thickens
If one finds intolerable the need to say “He are one and they is three” (Dr. Millard Erickson, God in Three Persons, p. 270), what is our alternative? Suppose we agree with top logician Stephen Davis that “no one has yet been able to explain in what way God is one and in what different way He is three” (p. 258).
As we have seen in chapter 22 the aorist of the key word “beget” as pointing to the origin of the true Messiah, is the great key to understanding. In that famous saying in Psalm 2:7 the Messiah is defined by these words: “You are my Son. Today I begat you = brought you into existence.” That text reappears most reasonably in Matthew 1:20, as explaining the genesis of Jesus (v. 18).
“What is begotten [by the Father] in her [aorist participle of gennao] is from holy spirit.” Again in Luke: “What is to be begotten will be the holy Son of God” or perhaps “What will be begotten holy is the Son of God.” The sense is the same.
Then in Acts 13:33, if we consult F.F. Bruce and other commentary we find the Psalm 2:7 text applied where naturally it belongs, to the coming into existence, the putting on the human scene of Jesus, not to his resurrection which has a different proof text, in verse 34: “And as for the fact that he was raised from the dead…”
Bruce is insightful: “‘Raised up’ – that is by raising him up in the sense in which he raised David (v. 22). For anistemi in this sense, see 3:22; 7:37; 3:26 (‘raised him up and sent him’). The promise of v. 23, the fulfilment of which is described in 13:33, has to do with the sending of the Messiah, not his resurrection (for which see v. 34). The addition of ‘from the dead’ in v. 34 differentiates this use of ‘raise up’ from its use in v. 33” (Acts of Apostles, Comm. on Greek text).
A Trinitarian commentator amongst many was honest enough to admit the obvious here, although it does not help his doctrine: “The Apostle does not quote in Acts 13:33 the passage from Psalm 2:7 in order to prove the resurrection of Jesus, but his incarnation [he means here the beginning of his life in Mary]. The ‘raising up’ [the RV corrected the KJV], not ‘raised up AGAIN’ as in KJV, of Jesus spoken of in v. 33, is the bringing of the Messiah into the world for his mediatorial work.
Compare Romans 9:17, ‘For this same purpose I have raised you up.’ This incarnation was promised in the second psalm. Paul then proceeds (Acts 13:34) to prove the fulfilment of the promise that the Messiah would be raised from the dead, by quoting Isaiah 53:3 and also Psalm 16:10. ‘And as concerning the fact that he raised him from the dead…I will give you the sure mercies of David’” (Dr. G.T Shedd, Dogmatic Theology, Vol. 1, p. 327.)
After all “beget” does not mean to resurrect from the dead, but to become the father of, and we know when that happened already.
Preceding article: Jesus begotten Son of God #10 Coming down spirit or flesh seed of Eve
with: 23. Coming down from heaven; 24. First spirit and then flesh & 25. Seed of Eve
To be continued: 28. Son of God; 29. The only one
- On the Nature of Christ (christadelphians.wordpress.com)
- The wrong hero (Stepping toes)
- Jesus begotten Son of God #8 Found Divinely Created not Incarnated (christadelphians.wordpress.com)