Jesus is LORD – not Son of LORD

Just a brief point about my recent posts on the tribal deity of Israel (here, here and here).  

In those posts I assumed that the LORD of the burning bush was the very One who became incarnate of the virgin Mary.  Just to say, that wasn’t sloppy grammar or fuzzy thinking (I don’t think!).  To many of you the point is obvious but I’ve read enough biblical theology around the place to know that other views abound.  So often you hear things like: “Jesus is the Son of the one the OT calls Yahweh.”  Now in one sense that is true.  In the OT, the Father often goes by the name of Yahweh, just as in the NT He often goes by the name Lord.  But most often ‘Lord’ refers to the Son – this is true in both testaments. 

Jesus’ claim, and the claim of the NT, is that He is Yahweh (in Greek ‘kurios’), the God of Abraham, the God of the burning bush (e.g. John 8:56-58).  Now the God of the burning bush is the Sent One from Yahweh (‘The Angel of the LORD’ Ex 3:2) and so clearly there is more than one Person called LORD.  But Jesus, the Sent One of the Father, claims to be the One who calls Himself I AM. 

Nowhere is Jesus ever called the Son of the Lord.  Everywhere Jesus is called the Lord.

I just mention this because it seems to me that many, wittingly or unwittingly, dilute the claims of Jesus in the Gospels.  But we must be aware of how radical Jesus’ claims are – He’s not simply saying ‘I am the Son of the God of the Old Testament.’  He’s saying ‘I am the God of the Old Testament.’  The implications are many but I said I’d be brief, so there you are.

For more see Christ in OT.

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Posted on by Glen in christology, Old Testament, theological method

About Glen

I'm a preacher in Eastbourne, married to Emma.

0 Responses to Jesus is LORD – not Son of LORD

  1. Dave K

    I’ve been musing on this post over the last day. This is what I have been wondering:

    This is clearly right, in many passages NT writers read Jesus in OT passages saying YHWH, as well as ascribing him the same attributes, relationships etc as YHWH in the OT.

    But how do you deal with the psalm in which David says ‘The LORD says to my Lord: “Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool.”’? The NT writers here interpret ‘my lord’ to be Christ and, at least in Heb 1, ‘the LORD’ as ‘God’. In a way I expect you would draw on what you say that ‘there is more than one Person called LORD’. But is there a danger here that we flatten the relationship between the two persons and lose the clear emphasis of the bible that Jesus receives his authority from the Father. So while he is never called the Son of the LORD, he is called the Son of God.

    Also I wonder if there how you would demonstrate that in the OT ‘most often “Lord” refers to the Son’. To me it seems that this is far from clear, and while it is clear that ‘more than one Person called LORD’ in the OT, it is not so clear that you can always confidently identify which person is being referred to. In fact, often it seems that the Trinity and one person of the Trinity is in view.

    Thirdly, how confident can we be that NT references to Jesus as lord are primarily about identifying with YHWH, and not the Davidic messiah? Both are obviously in view but, again, it is a lot more murky to me than you I think.

    Dave

    …nervous that his attachment to the murkiness is diluting Jesus’ claims, but still struggling with the revelation of the Trinity in the OT.

  2. Jacky

    Actually Glen.. would it be, well, a bit *bold* if I said that the people in the OT had even more knowledge of Jesus as Redeemer, than the Father who seemed more ‘mysterious’ (being the Unseen Person)…

    and that anything they knew about the Father was directly revealed to them by the LORD, Jesus. I don’t think John 5:30 and 6:38 refers only to Jesus Incarnate, but Jesus eternal, esp. cause his identity as the Sent One is cemented in the OT, not the NT.

  3. Pingback: Jesus is LORD - not Son of LORD. Some clarifications « Christ the Truth

  4. glenscriv

    Dave – excellent questions, I’ve responded in my most recent post.

    Jacky, I agree Jesus’ identity as Sent One is cemented in OT. In fact without an understanding from the OT that the Sent One is fully God then it’s hard to resist sophisticated unitarian arguments from the New. The unitarian just says Jesus is an exalted plenipotentiary but not fully God and most apologists say ‘No He’s more than that.’ The unitarian says ‘It only sounds like he’s more than that because he’s the right hand man, invested with the Father’s power.’ At that stage, if you’ve learnt your doctrine of God from the OT, you say “Aha! That *is* what it is to be YHWH! All hail God’s Divine Right Hand Man – the Sent One!”

    which, btw, would make an excellent name for a blog I reckon.

  5. James Hernon

    Hi there excellent post/blog,
    I would just like to comment on Unitarianism, they deny flat out the deity of Christ, be warned John warns in 1 John or 2 John who is anti christ but he that denies that Christ is come in the flesh… elsewhere in the Bible it says he took not on the nature of Angels Elsewhere in the Bible Hebrew 1:8 Unto the Son HE (The Father LORD) says ‘Thy Throne O God is forever a sceptre of rightesnous is the sceptre of thy throne’ Elsewhere in Revelation Jesus is called the Alpha and Omega and the Alpha and Omega is Called Lord God Almighty. So to go to the beginning even in Genesis GOD says ‘Let us create man in our own image and likeness’ So GOD refers to HIMSELF as ‘US’ meaning more than 1 person in GOD and also Matthew 3:17 The Father Calls the Jesus his Son and Beloved and also elsewhere in the Bible GOD the Father says ‘This day I have begotten thee’ Even the Angels are all worshipping Jesus (The Holy Ones anyway) ‘When he brings his firstborn into the world HE (The Father) Says ‘Let all the angels worship him’.
    Jesus is Of one Being with the Father and the Holy Spirit and thus Jesus is one Essence with the Father in the Son and the Son in the Father. Even Phillip said ‘Show us the Father’ And Jesus said ‘This long I have been with thee and you say show us the Father’ For GOD is one in Christ. But remember this also . That the Father is not the Son, The Son is not the Father and the Holy Spirit is not the Father or the Son for each is God yet there is not three God’s but One. For GOD is the Triune GOD The Holy Trinity in Unity. So therefore see 1 John 5:7 For there are three that bear witness in Heaven the Father, The Word and the Holy Ghost and these three are one.

    Sometimes there seems to be contradictions in the Bible like see this one: No one hath seen God no none at any time the only Son of God he hath declared him. Jesus is God The Son but none have seen God the Father, for Man cannot See God and live. So there is three Persons 1 God Eternal ‘I AM’ Yahweh. The Father is LORD, the Son is Lord, the Holy Spirit is Lord but to us there is but ONE Lord Jesus Christ God Incarnate.

    Unitarianism denies the Deity of Christ so therefore they are preaching a false Gospel and thus teaching doctrines of men and of error. These days there are many who will declare that Jesus is the Son of God and then flatly deny his deity and who he is See Exodus 3:14 and John 8:58 and read what Jesus said ‘Except ye believe that I AM ye will die in your sins’
    Since he claims to be eternal Yahweh then he must be Yahweh Incarnate, since he forgives sins then he must also be Yahweh the Son Incarnate. The Bible says that all things are subject to Him through whom all things came to be and the Bible also says it was only God who created all things so Jesus must be God.

    Once you grasp that there is 3 Persons in GOD then learn the Scutum Fidei and learn to read scripture and realise that the Father testified to St Peter, to Peter James and John in the transfiguration and that he also testified to the Son in Matthew 3:17 then you realise that God the Father has a Son and so he must be by nature God also if he truely is a true Son of God and thus we look then to the Holy Ghost and realise that Jesus declares him he to be a person and that he the Holy Ghost can be blasphemed so he also is God see Acts Act 5:4 Whiles it remained, was it not thine own? and after it was sold, was it not in thine own power? why hast thou conceived this thing in thine heart? thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God. This was said in reference to a lie said to the Holy Spirit.

    So then there is 3 Persons and 1 God for Christianity is Monotheism and not polytheism.
    Jesus is complex but Christology teaches that Jesus is 1 Divine Person and Has two natures and two wills from those two natures God and Man, so Jesus is the God-Man or God the Son the Word Made Flesh. In the Bible it simply says that all the fullness of deity dwelt in Human form and this The Two natures of Christ is called the Hypostatic Union between Jesus was was always co-eternal with the Father. He assumed the nature of a man and yet remained God the Son at the same time. So Jesus referred to his humanity as the Son of Man.

    So beware Unitarians could be deemed as Anti-Christs based on See 1 John 2:22 and 2 John 1:7. Who is antichrist but he that DENIES THAT CHRIST IS COME IN THE FLESH, so what was he before he took on Flesh? He was God the Son the Word.

    Thank you for your posts most excellent.
    Jimbo

  6. glenscriv

    Hi James,
    Glad you enjoy the blog. I agree that unitarianism is a dangerous lie. I hope you’ll find other posts helpful too.

    God bless,
    Glen

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