- Parent Category: FAQs
- Category: Bible Questions and Answers about God
- Published on Thursday, 19 November 2009 17:10
In dealing with a subject as sacred and profound as this, we must attempt to be clear in the meaning of the words we use. "Equal" is not the same as "equivalent." When two mathematical terms are equivalent, one may be used in the place of the other. In that sense, the Father and the Son are not equivalent. They are two distinct Persons and have distinct roles in the Godhead, yet God is one (Deu 6:4) and there is one God (4:35). The Father and the Son (and the Holy Spirit) are equal in substance and in every attribute. The Son is "the express image of His (God’s) person" (Heb 1:3), meaning He answers exactly to God’s substance. All that God is He is.
That they are two distinct Persons is quite evident in many Scriptures, including at His anointing (Mat 3:16, 17) and transfiguration (17:5). Peter tells us that the voice on the Mount of Transfiguration was the Father’s, speaking from heaven (2Pe 1:17, 18). The Father’s voice came from heaven and the incarnate Son was on earth, while the Spirit descended from heaven to earth at His anointing. These three distinct Persons are equally God; the Father (Psa 102:24a, compared with Heb 1:10) and the Son (John 20:28) are both addressed as God
The leaders of the Jews knew that, when the Lord Jesus referred to God as His Father, He thus claimed equality with God (John 5:18). Of course, those unbelieving men didn’t always have their theology right, so we can accept their statement only if it agrees with God’s. "But unto the Son He saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever" (Heb 1:8). The speaker in this passage is God (v 1), the Father to this King (v 5), and He addresses the Son as God.
The psalms enumerate the unique works of God (Psa 105) and His unique attributes (Psa 139). The Gospel of the Son of God, John’s Gospel, demonstrates that our Lord did those works and possessed those attributes.
"I and my Father are one" (John 10:30) expresses the equality of the Father and the Son.