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My Father is greater than I

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by UZThD, Aug 16, 2005.

  1. OldRegular

    OldRegular Well-Known Member

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    Dagg references the following Scripture:

    Psalms 2:8; 40:6-8; 89:3, Isaiah 49:3-12, John 18:6, Hebrews 13:20, Titus 1:2.

    I believe that the Covenant of Grace as described above can be inferred from these and other Scripture.
     
  2. UZThD

    UZThD New Member

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    ===


    ok. Let me share some of the problems which I face as one who rejects the eternal relational subordination of the Son:.

    One problem , already mentioned, is that if the Son is role subordinate incarnationally, then, it is argued , He must be preincarnationally as well. Incarnationally Christ says "I can do nothing by myself" (Jo 5) and "I do the will of Him who sent Me" ( Jo 4). But unless this subordination is eternal, then, God is mutable. (see Horrell and Frame).

    Another problem is that if there is no hierarchy in God, then, it is argued, there can be no differences between the Persons.(see Grudem)

    Another problem is that as a "Son" would be obedient to a Father, it is argued, so Christ if eternally Son, He must be eternally obedient.(see Grudem).

    Another problem is that the order usually is "Father, Son, HS." Why so unless there is a hierachy? (see Kitano)

    Another problem is that some exegetes see it that Phil 2:6 teaches that the Son as God, preincarnationally, is NOT eternally equal to the Father. "Harpagmon" (grasp) suggests that the Son did NOT have that equality (Wallace, Grammar), and form of God is not the same as equality with God (Burk). Equal to is not anaphoric to form they say. This argument must be exegetically answered.

    Another problem is that God is said to be the Head of Christ just as man is the head of the woman. 1 Cor 11:3.(see Kovack, Shemm, Grudem)

    Another problem is that the eternal spiration of the HS is made a corollary to the eternal subordination of the Son (see AA Hodge and Wiley)

    Another problem is that some teach that eternal generation ( 1 Jo 4:9 where the aorist of is taken as eternal) is the cause of eternal subordination (see Burke and Dahms).

    These are a few of the problems I face. There ARE others!

    I meet them head on because IMO it is important to understand the Person of Christ...at least as important as constant arguing over the time of His return :rolleyes:

    [ August 19, 2005, 12:13 PM: Message edited by: UZThD ]
     
  3. UZThD

    UZThD New Member

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  4. UZThD

    UZThD New Member

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  5. UZThD

    UZThD New Member

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  6. UZThD

    UZThD New Member

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    my bad---not 1 Jo 4:9 where the adjective is used but 5:18 where the verb gennao is used. "The one who was born of God keeps him" is said to refer to Christ and the verb is taken as a gnomic, timeless aorist and thus evidence, they say, of eternal generation( see Burdick).

    another problem is that if the kingdom is in the end turned over to the Father, 1 Cor 15:24,28, the Son cannot be , even after the Son's exaltation in Phil 2:8,9 ,equal in authority.(see Kitano, Shemm, Kovack)

    Another problem is that election is of the Father (Eph 1), why so if the Son is equal in authority?

    there are lots more too... .


    But IMO all have convincing counters.

    [ August 19, 2005, 01:40 PM: Message edited by: UZThD ]
     
  7. OldRegular

    OldRegular Well-Known Member

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    That should be John 17:6, I will have to be more careful with my Roman Numerals.

    John 17:6 I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world: thine they were, and thou gavest them me; and they have kept thy word.

    Here we have reference to God the Father's part in the covenant of Grace, the election of some to Salvation in Jesus Christ.
     
  8. UZThD

    UZThD New Member

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    That should be John 17:6, I will have to be more careful with my Roman Numerals.

    John 17:6 I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world: thine they were, and thou gavest them me; and they have kept thy word.

    Here we have reference to God the Father's part in the covenant of Grace, the election of some to Salvation in Jesus Christ.
    </font>[/QUOTE]===

    Oh. But I wan't questioning election.

    The Father calls (Jo 6) those whom He elected (Eph 1). I agree!

    But do you think that by evidencing election that is also evidence of a covenant re role subordination?

    IMO decrees concern that which is OUTSIDE of God. Does God decree things internal to God?

    Is Christ being destined to die evidence that this is a result of a covenant or is it evidence that ONLY HE of the Trinal Persons could do that because of something about His Person?

    You see, it is being claimed widely today among Protestant conservatives that Christ's eternal role subordination is based on qualitative differences between the Father and Him ,and IMO, that view seems right out of the RC -Rahner.
     
  9. SavedbyHISGrace

    SavedbyHISGrace New Member

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    This is not what the Bible teaches. Jesus was NOT subordinate to the Father before His Incarnation. In fact, His own words show the opposite. Jesus says in John 17:5

    "And now glorify Me Thou, Father, along with Thyself, with the glory I have before the world was, along with Thee" (so the Greek)

    For Jesus to say this, can only mean that before his Incarnation, and after, He is "co-equal" with the Father, as the Father are Son are "co-equal" with the Holy Spirit. The Three Persons simply cannot be God in the same sense, if any of them are in any way "subordinate" to the other. This self-abasing is what Jesus did of His own free will, only during His life on earth. Not before, or after.
     
  10. HankD

    HankD Well-Known Member
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    UZThd, you commented and asked:
    I wouldn't say lost authority but simply laid aside authority in that He chose not to exercise it in every situation.

    In the RSV and NASB there is an interesting translation of Hebrews 2:9

    But we see Jesus, who for a little while was made lower than the angels, crowned with glory and honor because of the suffering of death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for every one. Revised Standard Version © 1947, 1952.

    But we do see Him who was made for a little while lower than the angels, {namely,} Jesus, because of the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, so that by the grace of God He might taste death for everyone. New American Standard Bible © 1995 Lockman Foundation

    Actually IMO they are correct. Many versions leave “for a little while” out in spite of the fact that it is there present in the koine text.

    The “lowering” was for a purpose and the supposition of the writer is that He has been returned to His glorified state.

    Yes Peter James and John saw Him as He temporarily transformed Himself to His glorified state of being on the mountain.

    One day we all shall “see Him as He is”.

    HankD
     
  11. UZThD

    UZThD New Member

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    I wouldn't say lost authority but simply laid aside authority in that He chose not to exercise it in every situation.

    In the RSV and NASB there is an interesting translation of Hebrews 2:9

    But we see Jesus, who for a little while was made lower than the angels, crowned with glory and honor because of the suffering of death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for every one. Revised Standard Version © 1947, 1952.

    But we do see Him who was made for a little while lower than the angels, {namely,} Jesus, because of the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, so that by the grace of God He might taste death for everyone. New American Standard Bible © 1995 Lockman Foundation

    Actually IMO they are correct. Many versions leave “for a little while” out in spite of the fact that it is there present in the koine text.

    The “lowering” was for a purpose and the supposition of the writer is that He has been returned to His glorified state.

    Yes Peter James and John saw Him as He temporarily transformed Himself to His glorified state of being on the mountain.

    One day we all shall “see Him as He is”.

    HankD
    </font>[/QUOTE]===

    Hank:

    Thanks for your thoughts. In my opinion it is more feasible to say that God the Son exists in two sheres, deity and humanity, than to say that God the Son somehow shrunk in His divine attributes by laying them for a time aside in order to fit into His humbled humanity.

    Here is my present position, but maybe I'm wrong:

    I disagree with you ,and with Millard Erickson too, that the Son as God laid aside something--even temporally.

    While you have not so specified, I infer that you would agree with Erickson who says that the Son as God put aside such attributes as omnipresence and omniscience and so was no longer for " a while" the attributional equal of the Father.

    Erickson ( also Lewis and Demarest) says that the Son as incarnate God, could not access those attributes which are the Fathers. So God the Son, for a time, eg, knew less on earth than did His Father in Heaven! I much disagree! God learns from God? I think not.

    In my opinion that would constitute an ontological change and would result in one trinal Person being different and less than another. But God must = God!

    The solution IMO is to predicate ALL subordination in essence and attributes and authority to the Son's humanity, and to disavow that the Son's deity was at all altered. This of course is the view of many ancient and modern theologians who say that Christ obeys only in His humanity and that His humanity has its own mind and will and that it is these which are subordinate.

    In other words, IMO, the Son of God exists then, now and forever in two "spheres" : the divine and the human. He was NOT, I think, ever limited to His humanity, but transcends that as in His deity He must ever remain the Father's equal.

    As said, I may be wrong!

    In regard to your position on "for a little while" in Hebrews 2:9:

    1) Brachu ti par' may be interpreted EITHER spatially or temporally (see Ellingworthg, the New International Greek Testament Commentary) .

    2) The "lowering of the Son is concerned BOTH with His taking on humanity and with Him ,in the flesh, being perfected by His being tempted and His suffering consequent to His obedience ,as the context shows in 2:14-18. But IMO as God He is not tempted, perfected, or obedient.

    3) Again, IMO, this is not saying that the Son as God gave up the temporal use of some attributes! It is saying that in His humanity He did these things NOT in His deity! But IMO, He exists in both nor is He blended into some third being.

    4) This view expressed in 3) IMO is consistent with the word "took" (labon) in Phil 2:7. The humbling of the Son is NOT, IMO, any loss , even, "for a while," to the Son as God. The Incarnation is not a loss of anything ; it is an addition. And in that added humanity the Son is humbled and His glory was but rarely seen.

    5) So, in Phil 2:9 that glory becomes evident and all will bow the knee because then it is made obvious that both Christ's humanity and Christ's deity belong to one Person.

    6) But I do not think that even then His humanity is deified! Humanity cannot become deity.

    Bill

    [ August 20, 2005, 11:30 AM: Message edited by: UZThD ]
     
  12. HankD

    HankD Well-Known Member
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    Correct and this is verified by "my Father is greater than I", although I believe these attributes were available to Him by Triune consensus.

    But it is not a permanent state but temporary (for a little while) and wilful lowering (But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:) for a purpose : "that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.
    Luk 2:52 And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man.

    If we try to pick the "kenosis" apart and analyze how God could become a mortal human being we take the "mystery" out of the "mystery of Godliness".

    NKJV 1 Timothy 3:16
    And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh, Justified in the Spirit, Seen by angels, Preached among the Gentiles, Believed on in the world, Received up in glory.

    I hear and feel your passion UZThd, BUT, in the final analysis He makes the rules with or without our approval or understanding:

    Psa 115:3 But our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased.

    Isaiah 55
    8 For my thoughts [are] not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.
    9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.


    That is not to diminish your passion which is a good thing.

    Then again you may be right.

    HankD
     
  13. OldRegular

    OldRegular Well-Known Member

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    Jesus Christ states in John 10:30 I and my Father are one. That sounds like equality to me.
     
  14. UZThD

    UZThD New Member

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  15. UZThD

    UZThD New Member

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    Psa 115:3 But our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased.

    ===


    yes! God does what HE PLEASES!

    That is an attribute shared by ALL the Trinal Persons who are God.

    But make the Son ETERNALLY role subordinate, and you take that sovereignty from HIM!
     
  16. bruren777

    bruren777 New Member

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    God said it in the Bible, I believe it and thats it.
     
  17. UZThD

    UZThD New Member

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    ==

    All evangelicals believe "it." We just define "it" differently.
     
  18. HankD

    HankD Well-Known Member
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    {quote]But make the Son ETERNALLY role subordinate, and you take that sovereignty from HIM! I didn't (only "for a little while") and I don't.

    [​IMG]

    HankD
     
  19. UZThD

    UZThD New Member

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    ==

    OK. Then we still are not agreed.

    Here are THREE positions:

    1) Horrell,Ware, Grudem,Lewis, Demarest,Kovach, Shemm, Kitano, Frame, Dahms and others all say that God the Son ALWAYS is role subordinate and that it is His nature to be so , in contrast to the Father's. The earthy subordination, they say, is merely an unbroken prolongation of an eternal and necessary relationship.

    Texts as Jo 5: 18-26, which IMO refer only to His humanity, they refer to His preincarnational existence as well.

    2) You and Erickson and Buswell think that God the Son became Man by changing. God who was omnipresent became spatially limited.

    God who was omniscient came to know little more (cf Erickson) than do we.

    What is ytour evidence? Why Lk 2:52. But that refers to humanity IMo . The same humanity that was born of Mary and was held in her arms. IMO God , as God, is not held in His mother's arms.


    God who created and holds together (note tense there in Col 1 which hardly allows for the temporary earthly weakening you espouse ) the universe is feeble now and He tires in Samaria from walking (Jo 4).

    Immutability seemingly exists speedily out the windows of our belief system as it can apply to some Trinal Persons only not all as some retain the use of the divine qualities while the other stops their function.

    The exact same will and mind , but somehow now separated from the omniscience of the other Trinal Persons,( whom I think have but ONE mind and will but they must, then, have three) , enfeebled by the incarnation, now learns and is tempted and moves the body around seemingly just as Apollinarius hypothesized!

    These think it easier to believe that one who is God loses knowledge and has to be taught by another who is God than it is to believe in the divine immutability, and when supported by a reasonable exegesis of Phil 2, say that a new form, TRULY HUMAN, [not just a divine extreme make-over], including a different and distinct mind and will, has been taken up by God the Son and by that there is a true Man...like us! Like us! After all, we are NOT diminuative gods are we, so how is a God made over to resmble Man really "like us"??


    3) Others as Hodge and and I think that God cannot lose the use of attributes and that the human nature of Christ is a new entity that acts.

    We concur with Leo, Greg of Nyssa, Agatho, Tertullian, Constantinople, Nestorius, Theodoret, the Damascene, Chemnitz, Shedd, Warfield,AB Bruce, Dorner, Baille, and Clark that Christ has two distinct complete natures and that obedience is confined to the human and the divine does not change.

    We see it that the kenosis was not a loss but an addition and that by that addition God is kept God and Man is kept Man and that these two complete natures ( and how could they BOTH be complete were there just one mind and will?) together form one Person.

    So, when Petewr says "Thou knowest ALL THINGS" we say that is predicated to His deity but when Jesus says " I do not know the time of My return," we predicate that to His humanity!

    Likewise I predicate His role subordination to His Humanity, but am unable , at least for now, to see it that His humanity= God shrinking Himself to fit.

    IMO God is never limited to a body.

    But , again, thanks for the pleasant tone of your disagreement.


    Bill

    [ August 21, 2005, 06:22 PM: Message edited by: UZThD ]
     
  20. OldRegular

    OldRegular Well-Known Member

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    The Triune God is three persons in one nature. Jesus Christ was two natures, the human and the divine, in one person. The Apostle Paul states in Colossians 2:9 For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. Jesus Christ was fully God and fully man. When I say fully God I mean that He was equal with God and while on earth posessed all the attributes of God except He laid aside His Glory for a while. There can be no lack of harmony or unity within the Divine Nature.

    The Philadelphia Confession of Faith which was patterned after the 1689 London Confession states:

    In this divine and infinite Being there are three subsistences, the Father, the Word or Son, and Holy Spirit, of one substance, power, and eternity, each having the whole divine essence, yet the essence undivided: the Father is of none, neither begotten nor proceeding; the Son is eternally begotten of the Father; the Holy Spirit proceeding from the Father and the Son; all infinite, without beginning, therefore but one God, who is not to be divided in nature and being, but distinguished by several peculiar relative properties and personal relations; which doctrine of the Trinity is the foundation of all our communion with God, and comfortable dependence on him.

    (1 John 5:7; Matt. 28:19; 2 Cor. 13:14; Exod. 3:14; John 14:11; I Cor. 8:6; John 1:14,18; John 15:26; Gal. 4:6)

    Ref: http://www.baptiststart.com/print/1742_philadelphia.html


    The 1689 London Confession of Faith states:

    In this divine and infinite Being there are three subsistences, (d) the Father the Word (or Son) and Holy Spirit, of one substance, power, and Eternity, each having the whole Divine Essence, (e) yet the Essence undivided, the Father is of none neither begotten nor proceeding, the Son is (f) Eternally begotten of the Father, the holy Spirit (g) proceeding from the Father and the Son, all infinite, without beginning, therefore but one God, who is not to be divided in nature and Being; but distinguished by several peculiar, relative properties, and personal relations; which doctrine of the Trinity is the foundation of all our Communion with God, and comfortable dependance on him.

    d 1 Joh. 5.7. Mat. 28.19. 2 Cor. 13.14.

    e Exod. 3.14. Joh. 14.11. 1 Cor. 8.6.

    f Joh. 1.14.18.

    g Joh. 15.26. Gal. 4.6.

    Ref: http://www.ccel.org/creeds/bcf/bcf.htm
     
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