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Was Jesus The Son Of God Before The Earth Was Created?

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I've been thinking about this this morning and am wondering, from a non-LDS Christian point of view, whether or not Jesus was the son of God before the earth was created?

 

I know that for many non-LDS Christians the idea that Jesus was created by God-is God's spirit Son-is offensive.  That would seem to imply that Jesus is only considered the Son of God because of his mortal birth as such.  

 

So before Jesus was born as the physical Son of God, what was His relationship with God the Father?

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What someone believes and what their church may teach are two entirely different things.  Catholics would say that Jesus was eternally begotten of the Father.  Others, Protestants can be rather confusing in their approach to this topic.  I find some of them to go anywhere from a modalist approach to ...something else.  

 

I have always felt that Jesus was eternally part of the Godhead.  Some LDS seem to think that Jesus did not become a member of the Godhead until he was "chosen" by the Father according to Jesus' will to implement the Father's plan for man's salvation.  This has never made much sense to me.  I have always believed that he was light years ahead of us due to his unity with the Father.  Obviously he needed a body, but he was already creating worlds without number as a spirit.

 

Good question.  Thank you for bringing the topic up on this board.  

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What someone believes and what their church may teach are two entirely different things.  Catholics would say that Jesus was eternally begotten of the Father.  Others, Protestants can be rather confusing in their approach to this topic.  I find some of them to go anywhere from a modalist approach to ...something else.  

 

I have always felt that Jesus was eternally part of the Godhead.  Some LDS seem to think that Jesus did not become a member of the Godhead until he was "chosen" by the Father according to Jesus' will to implement the Father's plan for man's salvation.  This has never made much sense to me.  I have always believed that he was light years ahead of us due to his unity with the Father.  Obviously he needed a body, but he was already creating worlds without number as a spirit.

 

Good question.  Thank you for bringing the topic up on this board.  

 

So Catholics believe (or the Catholic church officially teaches) that Christ was created by God the Father?

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I've been thinking about this this morning and am wondering, from a non-LDS Christian point of view, whether or not Jesus was the son of God before the earth was created?

 

I know that for many non-LDS Christians the idea that Jesus was created by God-is God's spirit Son-is offensive.  That would seem to imply that Jesus is only considered the Son of God because of his mortal birth as such.  

 

So before Jesus was born as the physical Son of God, what was His relationship with God the Father?

 

Awesome question BlueBell...  thanks for that. Most Christians I know believe the Father, Son and Holy Spirit have always existed and are equal. Some question to ponder. 

 

Did Jesus exist before his human birth? What or who was Jesus before his incarnation? Was he the God of the Old Testament?

In order to understand who Jesus was, we first should understand the basic doctrine of the Trinity. The Bible teaches us that God is one and only one "being". This tells us that whoever or whatever Jesus was before his human incarnation, he could not have been a separate God from the Father.

While God is one being, he exists eternally as three coequal and coeternal Persons, whom we know as the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. In order to understand how the Trinity doctrine describes the nature of God, we must keep in mind the difference between the words "Being" and "Person." This distinction has been put in the following terms: there is but one what of God (that is, his Being) but there are three whos within the one being of God, that is, the three divine Persons—Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

The Being we call the one eternally as God. God has an eternal relationship within himself of Father to Son. The Father has always been the Father and the Son has always been the Son. And, of course, the Holy Spirit has always been the Holy Spirit. One Person in the Godhead has not preceded the other, and neither is one Person inferior to the other in his essence. All three divine Persons—Father, Son and Holy Spirit—share the one being of God. The Trinity doctrine explains that Jesus was not created sometime prior to his incarnation, but existed eternally

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I've been thinking about this this morning and am wondering, from a non-LDS Christian point of view, whether or not Jesus was the son of God before the earth was created?

 

I know that for many non-LDS Christians the idea that Jesus was created by God-is God's spirit Son-is offensive.  That would seem to imply that Jesus is only considered the Son of God because of his mortal birth as such.  

 

So before Jesus was born as the physical Son of God, what was His relationship with God the Father?

Hi. Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholics believe that Jesus was the Son from all eternity. The analogy that i am familiar with is that he is one with the divinity of the father in the same way that a ray of light is one with the source from which it emenates. A number of early Christian groups believed that he was a created being who was adopted as the son of the father upon his baptism, the descent of the dove being a sign of his election to this unique status. If i recall correctly, Jehovah's Witnesses believe that Jesus is the first creation (from nothing) of the father; they also identify him with Michael. He is the instrument of creation in that system.  Various and sundry denominations believe that Jesus is one of three expressions of the Divine in the way that vapor, water and ice are all expressions of water (modalism). I also know of at least one minister in the public eye who seems not to believe that Jesus was divine at all or, if he were, that it is a status attributable to all human beings. 

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I have always felt that Jesus was eternally part of the Godhead.  Some LDS seem to think that Jesus did not become a member of the Godhead until he was "chosen" by the Father according to Jesus' will to implement the Father's plan for man's salvation.  This has never made much sense to me.  I have always believed that he was light years ahead of us due to his unity with the Father.  Obviously he needed a body, but he was already creating worlds without number as a spirit.

 

I don't agree with this at all, but to each their own.

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I've been thinking about this this morning and am wondering, from a non-LDS Christian point of view, whether or not Jesus was the son of God before the earth was created?

 

I know that for many non-LDS Christians the idea that Jesus was created by God-is God's spirit Son-is offensive.  That would seem to imply that Jesus is only considered the Son of God because of his mortal birth as such.  

 

So before Jesus was born as the physical Son of God, what was His relationship with God the Father?

 

Jesus has always been the Eternal son of God, because that is his role. God the Father has always been the Eternal Father, because that is his role. Same with the Spirit. 

 

Jesus put on mortal flesh, because that was apart of his role. 

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Jesus has always been the Eternal son of God, because that is his role. God the Father has always been the Eternal Father, because that is his role. Same with the Spirit. 

 

Jesus put on mortal flesh, because that was apart of his role. 

 

So what makes Jesus the Son of God then?

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Hi. Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholics believe that Jesus was the Son from all eternity. The analogy that i am familiar with is that he is one with the divinity of the father in the same way that a ray of light is one with the source from which it emenates. A number of early Christian groups believed that he was a created being who was adopted as the son of the father upon his baptism, the descent of the dove being a sign of his election to this unique status. If i recall correctly, Jehovah's Witnesses believe that Jesus is the first creation (from nothing) of the father; they also identify him with Michael. He is the instrument of creation in that system.  Various and sundry denominations believe that Jesus is one of three expressions of the Divine in the way that vapor, water and ice are all expressions of water (modalism). I also know of at least one minister in the public eye who seems not to believe that Jesus was divine at all or, if he were, that it is a status attributable to all human beings. 

 

That's really interesting to know, thanks!

 

I think that some Christians forget just how much diversity there is among Christians in the world.

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So what makes Jesus the Son of God then?

 

That is his role. No different than what makes the Father the eternal father. None were created, they have always eternally been God. 

Edited by danielwoods

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Awesome question BlueBell...  thanks for that. Most Christians I know believe the Father, Son and Holy Spirit have always existed and are equal. Some question to ponder. 

 

Did Jesus exist before his human birth? What or who was Jesus before his incarnation? Was he the God of the Old Testament?

In order to understand who Jesus was, we first should understand the basic doctrine of the Trinity. The Bible teaches us that God is one and only one "being". This tells us that whoever or whatever Jesus was before his human incarnation, he could not have been a separate God from the Father.

While God is one being, he exists eternally as three coequal and coeternal Persons, whom we know as the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. In order to understand how the Trinity doctrine describes the nature of God, we must keep in mind the difference between the words "Being" and "Person." This distinction has been put in the following terms: there is but one what of God (that is, his Being) but there are three whos within the one being of God, that is, the three divine Persons—Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

The Being we call the one eternally as God. God has an eternal relationship within himself of Father to Son. The Father has always been the Father and the Son has always been the Son. And, of course, the Holy Spirit has always been the Holy Spirit. One Person in the Godhead has not preceded the other, and neither is one Person inferior to the other in his essence. All three divine Persons—Father, Son and Holy Spirit—share the one being of God. The Trinity doctrine explains that Jesus was not created sometime prior to his incarnation, but existed eternally

 

So, what, in your belief, makes Jesus the Son of God?  What is part of His person that gives him a completely separate distinction from God the Father?  Why is God (as you understand him, in the Trinity) divided into three different persons, if they are all exactly the same?

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That is his role. No different than what makes the Father the eternal father. None were created, they have eternally been God. 

 

So, basically, you have no idea.  You have no idea why God is the Father and Jesus is the Son, that's just the way it is.

 

That's not an insult or anything, just trying to really understand what you are saying.

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The Being we call the one eternally as God. God has an eternal relationship within himself of Father to Son. The Father has always been the Father and the Son has always been the Son.

 

Hi. Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholics believe that Jesus was the Son from all eternity. The analogy that i am familiar with is that he is one with the divinity of the father in the same way that a ray of light is one with the source from which it emenates.

This doesn't answer Bluebell's question completely.

The word "son" has a specific connotation/meaning.  If Christ was eternal/never created, in what way is he the son of the father outside of his mortal birth.

A father creates or produces a son.  If the Father didn't create or produce Christ then how exactly was he the Son before he came to earth?  Or was Son not his title then?

 

What about "Christ" or "Messiah" (anointed)?  At what point was Jesus anointed as Christ/Messiah?  Or was he always Christ?

 

For Mormons we believe that we are the same species as God/Christ.  Why it is so hard for some of us to believe that they progress and grow and had a beginning just as we do I will never understand.

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The word "son" has a specific connotation/meaning.  If Christ was eternal/never created, in what way is he the son of the father outside of his mortal birth.

 

A father creates or produces a son.  If the Father didn't create or produce Christ then how exactly was he the Son before he came to earth?  Or was Son not his title then?

 

Yes, this is exactly what i'm wondering, especially given the bolded part (thanks for putting it in a different but more clear way).

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So, basically, you have no idea.  You have no idea why God is the Father and Jesus is the Son, that's just the way it is.

 

That's not an insult or anything, just trying to really understand what you are saying.

 

"Why God is?" Get's us to logical questions of where did it all begin? Some posit an infinite regress (this god begat that god begat that…. and so on).

In the Bible it simply teaches that "In the beginning God…" He is, has been and always will be. He is the only being with this description.

 

So, if you ask me what my position is on this question, I refer to the Bible, and say that there is but one Eternal, infinite being, that has been forever, and forever will be. So, yes God the Father has always been and always will be the Father, and the same with the Son and the Spirit. 

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This doesn't answer Bluebell's question completely.

The word "son" has a specific connotation/meaning.  If Christ was eternal/never created, in what way is he the son of the father outside of his mortal birth.

A father creates or produces a son.  If the Father didn't create or produce Christ then how exactly was he the Son before he came to earth?  Or was Son not his title then?

 

What about "Christ" or "Messiah" (anointed)?  At what point was Jesus anointed as Christ/Messiah?  Or was he always Christ?

 

For Mormons we believe that we are the same species as God/Christ.  Why it is so hard for some of us to believe that they progress and grow and had a beginning just as we do I will never understand.

 

There are two answers. One is based in what I described as a "role" before. The role of the son or the father is a description of what they do or their functions. It's similar to the different roles of husbands and wives. Though husbands and wives are equal, they have different roles or functions. The same is true for the Father, Son and the Spirit. The Father didn't put on mortal flesh and dwell among us. The Son did. 

 

The other answer is anthropomorphic. The term Father and Son, is used to help us to understand their roles and relate to them. It doesn't indicate that the Father produced the son, in the way we procreate. 

Edited by danielwoods

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That is his role. No different than what makes the Father the eternal father. None were created, they have always eternally been God. 

There are 46 times where Jesus is called the Son of God in the New Testament. I am quite certin that people back then undersood the word "son" the same as we do now; meaning that Jesus is somehow the offspring of God the Father, which means that he must have had a beginning at sometme when he became that offspring, the same as my son who was born 30 years ago. 

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In the Bible it simply teaches that "In the beginning God…"

 

The ignored part here is that this clearly establishes that there WAS a beginning.

Which means either God came into being at the beginning of everything, or that this refers to the beginning of this creation when God already existed but we have no idea what happened before that.

 

Either way, this phrase does NOT prove a God that existed forever.

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There are two answers. One is based in what I described as a "role" before. The role of the son or the father is a description of what they do or their functions. It's similar to the different roles of husbands and wives. Though husbands and wives are equal, they have different roles or functions. The same is true for the Father, Son and the Spirit. The Father didn't put on mortal flesh and dwell among us. The Son did. 

 

The other answer is anthropomorphic. The term Father and Son, is used to help us to understand their roles and relate to them. It doesn't indicate that the Father produced the son, in the way we procreate. 

 

Thank you for at least providing a real answer to Bluebell's question.

I don't agree with it, but at least you provided an answer.  Two options in fact.

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There are 46 times where Jesus is called the Son of God in the New Testament. I am quite certin that people back then undersood the word "son" the same as we do now; meaning that Jesus is somehow the offspring of God the Father, which means that he must have had a beginning at sometme when he became that offspring, the same as my son who was born 30 years ago. 

 

And yet John describes him as being Eternal, just as God the father is. 

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The ignored part here is that this clearly establishes that there WAS a beginning.

Which means either God came into being at the beginning of everything, or that this refers to the beginning of this creation when God already existed but we have no idea what happened before that.

 

Either way, this phrase does NOT prove a God that existed forever.

 

Indeed other passages do indicate his eternal nature. The phrase is "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth…" In which case it is a reference to the beginning of physical creation, not a reference to when God began. 

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And yet John describes him as being Eternal, just as God the father is. 

 

The Bible is clearly describe Jesus as being Eternal just as God the Father is.

 

Is there a possibility that before the Universe was created that God, the ‘Ancient of days,’ was all alone, and that out of his own being he brought into existence the Word , who eventually became Jesus Christ?

No, that is "not" a concept that can be "harmonized" with Bible truth. Consider the following:

(1) Jehovah God explicitly declares that no other God existed — either before or after him. Note the testimony of Isaiah — “. . . efore me there was no God formed, "neither" shall there be after me. I, even I, am Jehovah; and besides me there is no God” (Isa. 43:10-11).

(2) Eternality is a prime characteristic of one who possesses the nature of deity. God is “from everlasting to everlasting” (Psa. 90:2). He is the “high and lofty One who inhabits eternity” (Isa. 57:15). Now, inasmuch as it is clear that the divine Word (Christ — Jn. 1:1,14) possesses the nature of deity, one must conclude that he is intrinsically eternal.

(3) The Old Testament explicitly declared the eternal nature of the preincarnate Christ. Isaiah refers to the “Prince of Peace” as “everlasting” (9:6).

The prophet Micah says that, in reality, the “goings forth” of the Bethlehem baby have been from “of old, from everlasting” (5:2).

(4) The New Testament is equally clear in this matter. Three times in John 1:1 the apostle employs the imperfect tense verb en (rendered “was”) to denote the “timeless existence” of the sacred person known as the Word. The eternal existence of the preincarnate antedates “the beginning,” to which John alludes, in this passage.

(5) Jesus himself affirmed his eternal existence, when he said to the Jews: “Before Abraham was born, I am” (Jn. 8:58). The present tense form, ego eimi (“I am”) stands in contrast to the aorist form “was born” (genesthai – to begin to be, to come into existence). The two expressions contrast the eternal and the temporal.

The Jews certainly caught the drift of what Christ was saying, i.e., that he was claiming eternality, therefore, the status of being God. That is why they sought to stone him. The expression “I am” points one back to Exodus 3:14, where Jehovah identifies himself as the “I AM,” i.e., the self-existent One.

(6) In the book of Revelation, Jesus claims that he is “the first and the last, and the Living [present participle — always living] one” (1:17-18). He is also the “Alpha and the Omega” — first and last letters in the Greek alphabet (22:13; cf. 1:8; 21:6). These phrases assert the eternal nature of the One so described, and are applied in these texts to either God, the Father, or to Christ.

It is not biblical, therefore, to assert that the second Person of the Godhead had a “beginning” in any way. 

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"Why God is?" Get's us to logical questions of where did it all begin? Some posit an infinite regress (this god begat that god begat that…. and so on).

In the Bible it simply teaches that "In the beginning God…" He is, has been and always will be. He is the only being with this description.

 

So, if you ask me what my position is on this question, I refer to the Bible, and say that there is but one Eternal, infinite being, that has been forever, and forever will be. So, yes God the Father has always been and always will be the Father, and the same with the Son and the Spirit. 

 

I appreciate the answer.  Two thoughts-

 

Does 'eternal' have to mean that something has no beginning and no end?  For example, we are promised eternal life if we follow Christ (to put it simply).    That means that at some point in the distant future it might be said of you "Daniel has eternal life".  Would someone, according to your beliefs about what eternal life is for you, hearing that be right to interpret that to mean that you always had life in the past and always will in the future?

 

Edit to add-The same question can be asked for whenever the scriptures promise 'eternal damnation'.  Does that mean that someone who becomes eternally damned was always damned and always will be?  Does the word eternal work both forward and backward when the scriptures use it to describe damnation (or salvation)?

 

That is how you are defining the word 'eternal' when it comes to God the Father so i'm asking whether or not your definition is legitimate when the word is used in the bible to describe something other than God the Father?

 

Second thought, like JLH has said, it seems obvious that the phrase 'in the beginning' is talking about the beginning of this creation and not the beginning of everything.  If that's true, then does the bible, in your belief, actually teach us what happened before 'the beginning'?

Edited by bluebell

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 Hello Bluebell.....you are popular with this topic 

 

Here is an absolutely fantastic video on this topic.   It's very well executed. Takes some pondering and thinking. 

 

Is Jesus God or the Son of God? - YouTube

 

 

I really appreciate the links but i don't know when i'll get to watch them.  I've got kids and noise galore over here and for that reason i don't typically watch videos online.  If you've got something written you can link to i'll read that (as long as it's not crazy long!).  :)

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