- Is Jesus “God” or is He the “Son of God”?
The Bible addresses Jesus as “God” and also the “Son of God”. Matthew recorded,
Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. Matthew 1:23
Even John in his first chapter in the gospel introduces Jesus as “God” to his readers. Addressing Jesus as the “Word” he wrote,
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. John 1:1
Apostle Paul wrote concerning Jesus,
God was manifest in the flesh. 1 Timothy 3:16
Isaiah prophesied about the coming Messiah around 700 years before Jesus came as a man, saying,
And his name shall be called … The mighty God. Isaiah 9:6
So we have clear testimonies from various Bible writers that Jesus is indeed “God”.
Also the New Testament writers tell us that it was Jesus who was the one that created the world and the whole universe by His divine power. It was He who spoke the worlds into existence and commanded life on earth.
John wrote of Christ,
He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. John 1:10
Paul wrote that Jesus not only created our world but the whole universe as well, thing that are seen and not seen by human eyes.
In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:… For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist. Colossians 1:14, 16, 17
So it was the word of Jesus that brought life everywhere. And the Old Testament gives us the details of the creation week in Genesis chapter one. It simply declares,
And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. Genesis 1:3
It was God who created everything in Genesis we are told, and it was Jesus who created it we are informed in the New Testament. So Jesus is clearly seen as God the Creator!
Now let us see whether Jesus is called the “Son of God” too. At the baptism of our Lord Jesus the Father spoke from heaven, and declared:
This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Matthew 3:17
Here God the Father addresses Jesus as His Son. Also in the most famous text of the Bible Jesus Himself declared that He is the Son of God.
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16
When talking to the blind man who He just healed, Jesus, referring to Himself and said,
Dost thou believe on the Son of God? John 9:35
In his wonderful epistle John wrote about Jesus,
And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. 1 John 5:11, 12
There are many more verses we could quote that declare Jesus is the “Son of God”. So we have verses that call Him “God” and we have Bible passages that address Jesus as the “Son of God” as well.
ONE MIGHT SAY—How can Jesus be “God” and at the same time the “Son of God”?
Well, we will look at a parallel setting what will help us to understand these truths better. We know that Jesus Christ came as a human being and He is called from this perspective as “man” in the Bible. And notice He is sometimes called “man” and sometimes He is called the “son of man”. In the below two verse that we shall quote you will see Jesus being called as “man”.
For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus. 1 Timothy 2:5
Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know. Acts 2:22
There are many other verses that could be cited where Jesus is called “man”. But now we will look at two other verses where Jesus is called “Son of man”. Jesus referred to Himself many times as “Son of man”.
When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: Matthew 25:31
John the revelator called Jesus as “Son of man” when he saw the visions on the island of Patmos.
And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle. Revelation 1:13
So we see in the above verses we have Jesus referred to as “man” and also as the “Son of man”. He was called “man” because he was a real man and a complete man. And he is called the “Son of man” in relationship to mankind. Jesus is the “Son of man” because He was born to the human family. Isaiah wrote,
For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given Isaiah 9:6
Jesus is the “Son of man” for the whole human race that He came to save. Time is not a factor here. He is not just the “Son of man” for those born before him in the human family, but he is the “Son of man” even for those born after His birth. He is the “Son of man” to all—to the people in the BC era and the AD era as well. He is not the “Son of man” to the ones who came before Him and the “Father of man” to the ones who came after Him! The word “Son” does not convey age here.
The same way the title the “Son of God” does not mean He came after the Father! The words “Father” and “Son” are not a reference to time but a reference to a relationship!
Let me give you an example. I am addressed as Mr Pedrin by many and this is my rightful name. But in relationship to my father I am addressed as the son of Mr Pedrin! There is no fault in both of these names that people sometime call me with. So also Jesus is rightfully called “God” because He is fully and completely God having all divine attributes of the Almighty, and He is called the “Son of God” in relationship to His Father!