1 The Desire of Ages p19.
2 Proverbs 30:4.
3 Proverbs 8:30. Patriarchs & Prophets p34.
4 Hebrews 1:3.
5 Webster’s 1828 Dictionary, and Young’s Concordance.
6 Webster’s 1828 Dictionary.
7 Patriarchs & Prophets p34.
8 Early Writings p54.77.
9 Daniel 7:9.
10 Revelation 1:13-15.
11 Isaiah 45:23.
12 Colossians 1:16.
13 Psalm 33:9.
14 Patriarchs & Prophets p33.34. Ephesians 3:9.
15 1 Selected Messages p296.297.
16 John 5:26. 1 Selected Messages p250.
17 Patriarchs & Prophets p35.
18 Philippians 2:6.
19 MS 101 1895. Manuscript Release No.12 p395.
20 Manuscript Release No.17 p192.
21 The Desire of Ages p21.
22 Patriarchs & Prophets p38.
23 3 Spiritual Gifts p36.
24 Patriarchs and Prophets p35.
25 Ibid p35.
26 The Story of Redemption p13.
27 Patriarchs & Prophets p37.
28 Isaiah 42:8. Comparisons can sometimes be in the verses following an absolute statement.
29 Psalm 45:6. Hebrews 1:8.
30 John 17:3.
Immanuel -- God with Us
THE DIVINITY OF THE SON
At some point in the eternal ages, God became a Father. We have no idea how this miraculous event occurred, but like any birth, it was welcomed with joy. No longer would the Supreme Being be alone in the universe, for now His love could be lavished upon a beloved Son.
This was “the Word of God – God’s thought made audible.” 1
In Proverbs, under inspiration, the question is asked, “Who hath ascended up into heaven, or descended? Who hath gathered the wind in his fists? Who hath bound the waters in a garment? Who hath established all the ends of the earth? What is His name, and what is His Son’s name, if thou canst tell?” 2
Before His Incarnation, God’s only begotten Son is called Michael -- ‘Who is like God?’
God’s Son said of Himself “I was His delight, rejoicing always before Him.” 3
Michael was a divine Being in every sense, just as His Father, for He was “the brightness of His (Father’s) glory and the express image of His person.” 4
In the Greek, the word ‘image’ is the well-known word ‘charakter’. (Strong’s 5481) It means ‘to scrape, cut, or engrave’. The underlying similarity in its numerous meanings is ‘the qualities of something’, especially an ‘impressed image of something or someone’, ‘an exact copy or (fig) representation – express image.’ 5
In Strong’s Concordance, both ‘express’ and ‘image’ are designated ‘charakter’ (5481). One of the meanings of ‘express’ is ‘to write or engrave’. Another is to be ‘plain, clear, direct; not ambiguous, as well as ‘given in direct terms, not implied or left to inference’ 6
Thus it is clear that God’s only begotten Son was the express image of His Father, a glorious Being, the image of the invisible God. He was “one in nature, in character, and purpose with His Father.” 7
Michael, as the Son of the Sovereign of the universe, was the royal Prince. He was loving, just and merciful like His Father. In outward appearance, the Father and Son looked alike, yet there was a difference – a glorious light covered the Father. 8
However, in vision, some of the prophets saw the Father’s glorious person. Daniel describes Him seated upon the throne as “… the Ancient of days… whose garment was white as snow, and the hair of His head like pure wool; His throne like the fiery flame and His wheels as burning fire.” 9 *
This description is very similar to the Son seen by John in his glorified humanity. He was “clothed with a garment down to the foot and gird about the paps with a golden girdle. His head and His hairs were white as snow and His eyes as a flame of fire; His feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace, and His voice as many waters.” 10
Not only did the beloved Son have the appearance and character of His Father, He also had the divine attributes of Deity.
His mind was omniscient, knowing all things. He knew the end from the beginning. “I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, that unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear.” 11
He was omnipresent, able to be in all places by the eternal Spirit.
As with God His Father, Michael was able to operate on two levels – in His divine form and through His omnipresent Spirit.
It is a mystery, but according to inspiration, where the Spirit is, there is God and where the Spirit is, there is the Son.
God’s Son also inherited His father’s omnipotent power, having the ability to create, “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.” 12
“For He spake and it was done; He commanded and it stood fast.” 13
Only a God-Being could work as an associate and co-worker with the God of the universe to create all things. 14
Like His Father, the Son had life within Himself. He too was the Source of life. “It is not physical life that is here specified, but immortality, the life which is exclusively the property of God. The Word, who was with God, and who was God, had this life.” 15
The life of the Son of God was the same as His Father. It was original, unborrowed and underived. “As the Father has life within Himself, so hath He given the Son to have life within Himself.” 16
This life is immortal. It is not conditional.
The Son is not dependent on His Father to maintain His life; it is something He inherited by birth. As with a son born of human parents, the child is only dependent on its mother for life until it is born, and that life is only on loan. With God’s Son, His very being is immortal.
The Son’s place was at the right hand of His Father.
He “shared the Father’s throne, and the glory of the eternal self-existent One encircled them both.” 17
Michael had a perfect right to this position on the throne, for in nature and every attribute of His divine nature, He was equal with God. He “thought it not robbery to be equal with God.” 18 He was equal, “infinite and omnipresent.” 19
“It was His infinite capabilities that made Him equal with the Father.” 20
However, being a Son, Michael was subject to His Father in all things. It was the Father’s prerogative to accept or reject His Son’s suggestions. It was the Father who ruled the universe. The kingdom belonged to Him and He was the One who must deal with sin when it arose.
Thus God’s Son – the divine Prince – was in a subordinate position.
But the Father invested the Son with authority as the Mediator between Himself and all created Beings. “So in the heavenly courts, in His ministry for all created beings, through the beloved Son, the Father’s life flowed out to all.” 21
As the Mediator, Michael was a blessing to all who “came under His benignant control.” 22
It was the Son, as God’s chosen Commander of the host, who “imparted to the angelic family the high commands of His Father.” 23
His authority was never questioned – not until the defection of Lucifer.
Then it became necessary to declare before the heavenly host the authority of God’s begotten One. In the presence of all the angels, the Father “set forth the true position of His Son”, showing His relationship to all created beings. 24
“Before the assembled inhabitants of heaven, the King declared that none but Christ, the only begotten of God, could fully enter into His purposes, and to Him it was committed to execute the mighty counsels of His will.” 25
The Father then publicly invested His Son with authority to command the heavenly host, saying that “wherever was the presence of the Son, it was as His own presence. The word of the Son was to be obeyed as readily as the word of the Father.” 26
No angel could ever question His authority again.
This honouring of Michael as equal with the Father was seen as an injustice to Lucifer. He claimed entitlement to reverence and honour equal to the Son. But Christ was to be “absolute ruler” over the angelic host and to His authority all must pay homage. 27
Lucifer was unwilling to submit to the authority of God’s Son as Heaven’s Commander, and thus began the great controversy between Christ and Satan.
Both the Father and the Son can be called GOD without qualification. At times we speak in a generic manner and there is no need for explanation as to whether we are referring to the Father or the Son. Old Testament texts can relate to both God and Christ, as Christ speaks on behalf of His Father.
Especially is this so when comparing infinity to finite beings, or idols of the heathen, as can be seen in the following verse. “I am the Lord, that is my name, and my glory will I not give to another, nor my praise to graven images.” 28
It is important to use Bible terminology, otherwise questions are put forward that should never arise. Any title can refer to either the Father or the Son when spoken in a generic way, but when revealing the identity of the Father and the Son as individuals, it is God the Father and the Son of God.
To speak of God the Son is not Biblical. It creates confusion with those who believe the creeds of Christendom. Only as we maintain a true Scriptural understanding will we be free from false questions and statements.
To believe the Son is God is in harmony with the word of the Father who said, “Thy throne O God, is for ever and ever; a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom.” 29
Confusion need not reign. There are not two Gods, a greater and a lesser God. If we acknowledge the words of Scripture, we are safe.
“And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.” 30