I. The True Deity of Christ (p 59, et.seq.)
1. Lays great stress on the nature of the Person of Christ, particularly His deity.
2. He demands the “Christological” confession of His essential deity.
a. Without it, there can be no divinely wrought faith.
b. Mt 16:13-18.
c. This confession is the petra on which church is built.
B. Church of all ages has always stood on this confession.
1. Against the Unitarians.
a. Who insist Christ is only “called” God.
b. Who claim He is not God essentially.
2. Against the “positive theologians”.
a. Who insist He is called God only because, e.g. the dynamic will of God was active in Jesus in an extraordinary manner.
b. Who deny His essential deity.
3. Against the Subordinationists.
a. Who “let” Him be God in essence.
b. But insist He is a God of lower quality.
1. Calls Christ
a. Theos: Jn 1:1.
b. ho huios tou Theou tou zōntos: Mt 16:16.
c. Uses these terms in their proper and metaphysical sense.
2. Ascribes to Son numerically one and the same essence with the Father.
a. Ascribes numerically the same divine actions.
b. In general, ascribes the whole list of divine attributes.
c. Jn 10:30.
(1) Refers to the unity, the numerical unity, of the essence.
(2) Not a reference to Him being at one in mind and will and performs same operations with the Father (as stated by the Arians, Socinians, Subordinationists, etc).
(3) v28 ascribes to Himself omnipotence and omnipotent action.
(4) v29, reason given in v30.
d. Jn 5:17
(1) Asserts the numerical unity of the omnipotent action of Father and Son.
(2) cf v18.
(3) Note He did not tone down the assertion in v19.
3. Testifies to the divine attributes in general.
a. Jn 8:58: He was before Abraham.
b. Jn 17:5: He was before the world.
c. Jn 1:1.
d. Jn 1:3: the Creator.
e. Col 1:16,17: He sustains the world by His omnipotent presence.
f. Jn 21:17: He knows all things.
g. Jn 10:28-30: Omnipotent with the Father.
h. Jn 5:21,28,29: Raises the dead as does the Father.
i. Jn 1:14; 2:11: With the Father, does miracles in His own power.
j. Jn 5:23: Is to be adored by all creatures as their God and Lord.
D. Objections by some Subordinationists:
1. They say He is called God (Theos) only in the predicate, not in the subject.
2. Therefore, they say, only a god of lesser rank or lower quality.
3. Answer to this:
a. He is called Theos in the subject in
(1) 1Ti 3:16 (note Nestle has hos i.e. “Who”)
(2) Ac 20:28.
b. If He is called God in the predicate, matter settled once and for all.
(1) It is primarily the predicate which determines the essence of a thing.
(2) Jn 1:1.
(3) He is called in the vocative in Heb 1:8 and Jn 20:28.
(4) See the specifying adjectives in
(a) 1Jn 5:20: “the true God”.
(b) Tit 2:13: “the great God”.
(c) Ro 9:5: “God over all”.
c. Polytheistic views lie back of their argument
(1) They take “god” as a class name.
(2) But, “god” in the metaphysical sense designates the one Divine Being.
(3) They end up with three distinct divine beings, unequal in rank and quality.
(4) Jn 14:28: refers to Christ according to His human nature in the state of humiliation.
E. Mystery of Trinity – with an unanswered question.
1. How, with the divine essence being one in number, only the Son, and not at the same time the Father and the Spirit, could become man.
2. All attempts to explain this are bad.
3. But, Christian faith is sure of:
a. In Son of God not merely a part, but all the fullness of the Godhead dwells (Col 2:9).
b. Not the Father, but only the Son became man in the fullness of time (Gal 4:4,5)
F. Denial of His true deity.
1. Prompted first by rationalistic considerations (e.g. “confuses the entire doctrine of the Person of Christ”: Dewitte, p 63).
2. Secondly, and primarily, it is denied in the interest of Pelagianism.
a. Says heaven must be earned by man’s own works.
b. Demands that Christ be simply our model and pattern.
c. Avoids the necessity of His incarnation, obedience, suffering, substitutional satisfaction.
G. It is the Son of God who fulfilled the Law and died for us.
1. Gal 4:4,5.
2. Ro 5:10.
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