by Teresa Ferraro
If our goal is to know God, and Christ is the only way to the Father, it is critical we know Christ correctly. Mis-identifying Christ, I believe, will lead to a wrong concept of the Father, a different view of one’s relationship with God, and a different approach to living and experiencing this earthly life.
This article answers those searching for guidance in the discussion on the Trinitarian or Unitarian concepts of God by simply walking through just a few important points to remember as we identify God and our relationship with Him.
Scripture thoroughly connects and identifies “the Word” as both God and Christ, confirms the Trinity, and shows Christ as eternal God. Jesus of Nazareth was a human container, just as we are; but Christ, the Son of God, is eternal God, Creator, giver of eternal life, and the only way to the Father.
“Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we him no more” (2 Cor. 5:16). It is time we know the eternal Christ, not just Jesus of Nazareth.
“For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the WORD, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.” (1 John 5:7)
“In the beginning (eternal being) was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God [two together]. All things were made by him [the Word as Creator]; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life [zoe, life from the beginning, a God-trait]; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.” (John 1:1-5)
“And the Word was made flesh [Jesus Christ], and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.” (John 1:14)
“And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life [zoe], 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. These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.” (1 John 5:11-13)
“And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.” (1 John 5:20)
“God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds [the Son is Creator, eternal God]; Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power … But unto the Son he [GOD] saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom. … And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth [eternal God]; and the heavens are the works of thine hands:” (Heb. 1:1-3, 8, 10)
God the Father is in God the Son; God the Son is in the Father; they (with the Holy Spirit) are one God, one Spirit. "I and my Father are one" (John 10:30).
Diety can dwell in humans ("I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you," John 14:20; "I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one," John 17:23); BUT a human cannot dwell in a human. To say Jesus is only human and lives in us would be to believe a human can be spiritually placed in another human. There is no support for this in scripture. God is not in a human named Jesus Christ placed in other humans as eternal life. Christ is God, everlasting Creator, the Word, with eternal life, dwelling in humans.
Paul can call Jesus a man because Jesus was both man and God, God in flesh. It is that very fact that positions Him as mediator by having experienced both mortal humanity and immortal, righteous, godliness. Only He can bridge God and man because He is the only one who has lived both. Paul stating Jesus as man does not exclude the fact that Jesus was God the Son also.
“And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost [God the HS] shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest [God the Father] shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing [God the Son] which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.” (Luke 1:35)
"Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee." (Psa. 2:7)
"Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee." (Acts 13:33)
"Thou art my Son, to day have I begotten thee." (Heb. 5:5)
We are to know the Son to know the Father. The only way we can know the Father is by knowing the Son, and the Son always glorifies the Father; He does not rob the Father of glory or “push the Him into a corner.” We cannot know the Father except through knowing Christ; therefore, we cannot know the Father by pushing Christ aside into a corner with the concept of Him as only a human.
“Ye neither know me, nor my Father: if ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also.” (John 8:19)
“I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.… Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father? Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works.” (John 14:6-7, 9-10)
“But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me [HS teaches us Christ because that is how we know God; that is the goal].” (John 15:26)
“He shall glorify me [Christ]: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you. All things that the Father hath are mine: therefore said I, that he shall take of mine, and shall shew it unto you.” (John 16:14-15)
“Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.” (John 8:58)
“I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven.” (Luke 10:18)
“Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world.” (John 17:24)
“And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.” (John 17:5)
“That which was from the beginning [eternal], which we have heard [in flesh], which we have seen with our eyes [in flesh], which we have looked upon [in flesh], and our hands have handled [in flesh], of the Word of life [God]; (For the life was manifested [God shown in flesh], and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life [God], which was with the Father [in heaven], and was manifested unto us;)” (1 John 1:1-2)
“And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; Even the Spirit of truth [GOD]; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. … At that day ye shall know that I [GOD] am in my Father [GOD], and ye in me, and I [GOD] in you. … If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we [Trinity] will come unto him, and make our [Trinity] abode with him. … But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost [GOD], whom the Father [GOD] will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.” (John 14:16-17, 20, 23, 26)
"When he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you." (John 16:13-14)
"Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise. … I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me. " (John 5:19, 30)
"I am one that bear witness of myself, and the Father that sent me beareth witness of me." (John 8:18)
"If God were your Father, ye would love me: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me. … If I honour myself, my honour is nothing: it is my Father that honoureth me." (John 8:42, 54)
"My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all." (John 10:29)
"My Father is greater than I." (John 14:28)
“Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power. … And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all.” (1 Cor. 15:24, 28)