As I pondered deeper into the topic of evangelism, I can’t help but consider how am I to explain the concept of “Son of God” to pre-believers. How am I to preach something that I’m not even sure myself? How can I convince myself that Christ is indeed the True Son of God? If only I can convince myself will I be able to convince others. Else, all of this will be pointless.
So I dived into a deep reflection about the identity of Christ. Rooted in the Bible but not using the Bible, I attempt to figure out the mysteries of eternity; mysteries that was laid before the foundations of the universe. You see, if God is true and Jesus is His Son, surely the identity of Jesus must be manifested in all of eternity. And as unfathomable is the concept of eternity, the Godhood of Jesus must also be expressed in a way that can be easily identified.
For this, I do not want to jump the gun and use Biblical reasonings for what good does the Bible bring to non-believers? How can you tell pre-believers about Christ without scaring them away through the use of Biblical terminologies and the physical act of lashing out the Bible? Therefore, I firmly believe that the Godhood of Christ must be re-discovered in a way that is not through the Bible. We need to see the Godhood of the Son through the lens of Creation. And more specifically, we need to rediscover the Godhood of the Son through the fingerprints that He’s left in the formation of the universe.
Traces of Jesus’ Godhood can be found in multiple religions across the globe. Almost every religion except Islam does have certain traces of a Creator God that is without form; a God that is Three-Persons in One. This creator God is the God above all “gods” (Psalms 95:3, 97:9). And because He is above all other gods, humanity’s attempt to explain the eternal attributes of God’s infinite nature led to the birth of a multitude of “gods” or representations of this God. In a sense, we can say that The Ancients knew a certain attribute of God that we took for granted. There is something special about The Number Three in the unique identity of the Creator.
It’s funny how we as limited human beings can wrap our minds around the concept of one God who created the entire universe and everything within it. It’s funnier how we can wrap our minds around the different attributes of God manifested in different forms executing different work within human society. In fact, the former, being monotheism, and the latter, being polytheism, is in essence, the same thing. The identity of God is communicated through His different Names in the former and in different visual representations in the latter. In both of them, the identity of God is communicated and represented through different things. It is on these attributes people hold on to God’s promises. It is on these attributes where people root their faith. It is on God where people find their ultimate purpose.
Hence, whether monotheism or polytheism, we agree that there’s One God who created the Universe and everything within it. Given this worldview, where will the Godhood of the Son fit into the picture?
To understand the Godhood of the Son, we must first consider the intent of God. But it is also here where we will reach a dilemma. We understand that God created the universe out of love for His Son (ref: Colossians 1:13). Therefore, it is through the Son in which all things were formed and held together (ref: Colossians 1:15, Hebrews 1:3). But this doesn’t tell us anything. Why would God, a Being so great and with no lack, ever require a Son through Whom He create Creation as we now reside within? Why can’t He just create the universe the way we know it without the need for the Son? The answer to this is in humanity’s innate value. If God created us by Himself and not for the Son Whom He Loves (ref: Ephesians 1:6), then the value of humanity plummets from that of “love” to that of “mere existence”. However, through this, we’ve only concluded a correlation between the existence of Jesus Christ and the value of humanity. We’ve not arrived at a valid conclusion for the Godhood of Christ.
The Godhood of Christ should be considered from an eternal viewpoint: Think eternal existence in its entirety. Consider the nature of God from the attributes He claims He is — Love. If He is One, how can He love Himself if, in essence, He is only One Person? If He is not One, then how can He be One as He claims? This too does not give the Godhood of Jesus a definite answer. What then if we were to consider the concept of Marriage — something that the Bible claims is an exact representation of Jesus’ relationship with the Church (ref: Ephesians 5:31-32). This too does not give God sufficient reason to back up Jesus’ Godhood. If God were to marry humanity and be One Flesh, then surely God can do so, without the need for the Son.
Can it be that we simply cannot justify Jesus’ Godhood from an eternal vantage point given our limited understanding of eternity? Can it be that we’ve been doing it wrong all along by separating God and Jesus into two different beings? Can we see God and Jesus as One Being?
From this perspective, Jesus is God and God is Jesus. They are One. And in the eternal realm, they’ve never left each other. Even though God may have come down and lived as a human being for a time being, His eternal nature meant that when He was on earth, He was also in heaven. His eternal nature meant that they are One. However, when Jesus is in the flesh, they are but two. Consider incarnation. In Hindu mythology, when Vishnu incarnates and becomes Krishna, Vishnu loses many divine powers except for a “positive attitude”. Hence, Krishna, though different from Vishnu in divine identity and expression, is in fact, still the same person. Likewise, when God manifested Himself through the Spirit (still Himself) and was born onto the earth through Mary, He was outwardly not the God He is in heaven, but a Person with humanly attributes. He was effectively, “a Son”, born of God who is the Father. Therefore, when we considering the identity of Christ, we can consider Him as God the way we consider the creator God as God.
This perspective allows us to put everything else into perspective. For example, when God created the Universe for the Son and ensure that all things were held together through the Son, He was, in fact, paving the way to create a physical environment for Himself to be born into as Jesus so as to accomplish the salvation plan. In other words, the purpose of Creation was so that Jesus may be born into it and be with the beings He created. Also, when Jesus was on earth, He prayed to God “The Father” as if they are two different persons even though they’re in essence, the same Person. He did so because they are the Same Person but in a different form during that limited time when He walked the earth. And finally, from an eternal perspective of worship, our sole purpose of life is to walk with God by following the example He has laid down for us through Jesus, knowing that with full confidence, we will be able to return to Him no matter what our current state is (ref: Hebrews 4:14-16, 1 John 4:17)
When we consider the Godhood of Jesus Christ and view Him as the same entity as God the creator of the universe, we will come to the realisation that God is indeed the Love that He claims to be — the Maker of the Universe allowed human fashioned nails to pierce His Hands so that He may one day share His eternal happiness (ref: Matthew 25:21,23) with those whom He loves.
I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”
He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”
— Revelations 21:2-5, NIV.