Jesus: The Only-Begotten Son of God

Because of Jesus, New Testament Christianity is unlike any other world religion. No person, no philosopher, no religious leader, no angel compares to Him. The fundamental reason for His unique distinctiveness is compacted into the simple descriptor “the only begotten Son of God”.

Unlike Adam who was a son of God (Luke 3:38) because he had no human parents, and unlike the angels who are sons of God (Job 38:7) but with no human parents, and unlike humans who are the offspring of God because of Adam and Eve and their earthly father and mother, Jesus is the only person in history with a human mother and divine paternity.

When the angel Gabriel was dispatched to Galilee to inform the betrothed virgin Mary of her impending pregnancy, she was greatly puzzled at how she could conceive a child in her womb and bring forth a son to be named Jesus when she had never had any relations with a man (Luke 1:26-34). “And the angel answered and said unto her, ‘The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore, also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God” (Luke 1:35). 

Though miraculous conceptions had transpired in human history before–see Abraham and Sarah’s Isaac, each of these conceptions and their subsequent births occurred within the standard laws of human procreation. Jesus’ conception was uniquely different and distinct. He is the only begotten Son of God only because “with God nothing shall be impossible” (Luke 1:37).

Therefore, a virgin named Mary did conceive and bring forth a son just as God had promised in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:15) and Isaiah had predicted seven centuries prior to His birth in Bethlehem (Isaiah 7:14).

Because He is Emmanuel (“God with us”), Jesus is uniquely distinct in His revelation of God. “No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him” (John 1:18). Jesus is the full, complete, all-sufficient, and final revelation of God to humanity. If you have seen the only begotten Son of God, you have seen His Father (John 14:9).

God had at various times and in diverse ways communicated His will to generations past by His servants the prophets, but His final revelation of Himself and of His will was given by His only begotten Son (Hebrews 1:1-2). Jesus’ words are greater in authority than those spoken by God through Moses and the prophets (Matthew 17:5). He is the son of God’s house; they were servants in it (Hebrews 3:5-6).

Jesus is uniquely distinct because of His death and resurrection. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son…to be the propitiation for our sin…that we might live through Him” (John 3:16; 1 John 4:10, 9).

Because of His perfect sacrifice as God’s lamb, God resurrected Him in fulfillment of David’s prophecy: “Thou art My Son, this day I have begotten Thee” (Acts 13:33). Unlike any resurrection prior to His, Jesus was raised never to die again. A new race of sons of God was introduced into history. “Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God” (1 John 3:1).

As the firstfruits of the resurrection (1 Corinthians 15:20), the mission of the only begotten Son of God/captain of human salvation is to bring many souls to glory (Hebrews 2:10). This He can do because He Himself became a partaker of flesh and blood, destroyed the devil’s power over death, and delivered us from bondage and fear (Hebrews 2:14-15).

   Send article as PDF   

Author: jchowning

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *