One of the great themes in the Bible is that of relationships – between God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ, God and man, and between human beings themselves. Pretty much everyone has relationships with other people unless they live on their own on a desert island, and so it should come as no surprise to anyone that it is a major theme running right through the Bible. Unless we get these relationships right, we will have a miserable life, but much more importantly, the spiritual application is of paramount importance, as we get close to God, and stay close to Him, which will give us eternal life in the Kingdom of God.
This series of Q&As is but a brief overview on this subject, and we hope that it will prove helpful to all who read this information, and to those who decide to delve further into this matter. There is so much more in the Bible than that which we will cover in this series.
Relationships – God the Father and Jesus Christ.
Right from the dawn of civilisation we read in the first book in the Bible that there was a relationship with God the Father and one other Personage, the “Logos” or “Spokesman.” In Genesis 1:26, we read: “Then God said, ‘Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.’”
There are those who take issue with the phrase “Let Us make man in Our image” dismissing the argument that it is about more than just one Person. This concern is addressed in our booklet “God is a Family” on pages 3-4:
“Some claim that the statement, ‘Let Us make man in Our image,’ does not reveal a plurality of persons in the Godhead, but that it is like an expression of a king who speaks of himself in the plural form. They point out, for instance, that the queen of England might say something like, ‘We have decreed…’ She is referring to herself, but she says, ‘we.’ This way of speaking is called ‘pluralis maiestatis’ or ‘pluralis maiestaticus.’
“The problem with applying this concept to God’s statements in Genesis 1 and 3 is that God did not use this kind of speaking in His inspired word, the Bible—in fact, the early Hebrews knew nothing about this way of speaking.”
The booklet then goes on to cover many more aspects about the relationship between the Father and the Logos—the “Word” and the Son of God, who became Jesus Christ, with subtitles such as “Jesus Was – And is – God!”; “Jesus Came to Reveal the Father”; “Who and What Was Jesus Before His Human Birth” and much more, and is very well worth reading or re-reading.
Let us look at some very pertinent Scriptures that show how important and close this relationship is and always has been.
In Revelation 13:8, we read: “And all who dwell on the earth will worship him, whose names have not been written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.” Other translations render this phrase slightly differently, thereby implying that the Book of Life existed from the foundation of the world and that the names of true believers were written in that book before the world was founded. Both concepts are correct. We explain this in detail in our free booklet, “Are You Predestined to Be Saved?”
In any event, it was established or preordained or predestined from the foundation of the world (in fact, even prior to this) that Jesus Christ would come to this earth to die for our sins.
We read further that “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men” (John 1:1-3). In verse 14, it reveals that the Word was Jesus Christ: “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.”
And so we can conclude quite clearly from these verses that the Word, Jesus Christ, had no beginning and was with the Father from eternity. Micah 5:2 confirms this, saying that Jesus Christ—the One to be Ruler in Israel—will come “Whose goings forth are from old, From everlasting (literally, the days of eternity).” In the letter to the Hebrews, it is explained that Jesus Christ—called “Melchizedek”—was and is “without father, without mother, without genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life” (Hebrews 7:3).
And the two of them are a Family. They are both God beings, referred to as the Father and the Son.
Jesus came to this earth to preach the Kingdom of God and this was central to His ministry. In Matthew 4:23, we read: “And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease among the people.” He further taught: “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you” (Matthew 6:33). There are well over 100 references to the Kingdom in the four gospel accounts. This same gospel has to be preached today.
In our free booklet “The Gospel of the Kingdom of God,” we read, on page 2: “The Bible repeats time and again that Jesus Christ preached the gospel of the Kingdom of God. In fact, Christ’s whole message had to do with the Kingdom of God—WHAT it is, WHY we need to understand it, and HOW we can have a part in it.
“The Jews at the time of Christ were so upset about the message of the Kingdom of God that they killed Christ. Their understanding of what the Kingdom of God is, and who would be in it, was quite different from what Jesus taught. That is why they were so intent on killing Him.”
John 5:19 gives an insight into the close personal relationship that the Son had with His Father: “Then Jesus answered and said to them, ‘Most assuredly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He sees the Father do; for whatever He does, the Son also does in like manner.’” The Son and the Father were united in love and purpose. In John 14:9, Jesus is quoted as saying: “Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?”
In John 5:30, we read a statement which reveals the closeness of Father and Son: “I can of Myself do nothing. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is righteous, because I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me.”
The website of dailyverse.knowing-jesus.com says: “Jesus is the true representation of the immortal God in every aspect of His character and will. He is a visible image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation Who is able to genuinely say, ‘My food is to do the will of My Father’ and ‘Thy will not mine be done’. Philip had yet to understand that Jesus was the Word of God, made flesh, Who was with God in the beginning. He is the exact representation of God, Who had come to earth to reveal the Father to Adam’s fallen race.” Of course, we understand that man did not “fall”—it is Satan who fell like lightning from heaven (compare Luke 10:18).
Jesus came to earth not to do His own thing, but to do His Father’s Will. We read this in several verses: “Jesus said to them, ‘My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to finish His work’” (John 4:34); and: “‘For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me’” (John 6:38). We further read: “Then Jesus said to them, ‘When you lift up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am He, and that I do nothing of Myself; but as My Father taught Me, I speak these things. And He who sent Me is with Me. The Father has not left Me alone, for I always do those things that please Him’” (John 8:28-29).
Jesus always spoke as directed by His Father: “For I have not spoken on My own authority; but the Father who sent Me gave Me a command, what I should say and what I should speak” (John 12:49). We also read in John 14:31: “But that the world may know that I love the Father, and as the Father gave Me commandment, so I do. Arise, let us go from here.”
Jesus is immortal and came to this earth and preached about the Kingdom of God. His Father commanded Him what to say; He always sought to do His Father’s Will, and copied what the Father does. This reveals very precisely and surely that the Father and Jesus Christ have the closest relationship that it is ever possible to have, being in total agreement and unity about everything.
The relationship between the Father and the Son has been in existence from before there was any beginning—before there was anything created—and they agree on all things. We just have to think about the total agreement that they both had to have when working out their master plan of salvation for mankind and when creating the universe with every tiny detail agreed to completely. We know that the return of Jesus Christ will be necessary at the end of this age (compare Matthew 24:22) but no one knows either the day or the hour when that will happen (see verse 36) except the Father. The Father “knows” or better “decides” when that time has come; it is in His total, complete and sole authority to determine the timing. When the Father makes that decision, as He determines when that time has arrived, there will be no disagreement between the Father and the Son and Jesus will return just in time to save mankind from cosmocide. There is no competitive spirit between them and they are as one. These remarkable examples in the Word of God give ample testimony to their close and unchanging relationship which will continue on throughout eternity.
The Father entrusted and entrusts Jesus with great responsibility: “For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him” (Colossians 1:16); and: “God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds” (Hebrews 1:1-2). In turn, Jesus fully trusted and trusts His Father; theirs was and is a fully reciprocal relationship.
As alluded to before, the relationship between the Father and the Son is one of love. In fact, all the aspects of their relationship, discussed herein, are based and founded on the fact that they love each other. We read in Matthew 3:17 the Father’s message about His Son to the people, which was communicated by an angel: “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” This message was repeated to Peter, James and John on the mount of transfiguration (Matthew 17:5; compare 2 Peter 1:17). The Father loved and loves the Son (compare John 3:35; 5:20; 10:17; 15:9; 17:24, etc.)—He always has and He always will. At the same time, as already stated above, the Son loved and loves the Father (compare again John 14:31). That loving relationship will never end.
There is so much more information about our Saviour, Jesus Christ, but we have only referenced briefly that which is concerned with His relationship with His Father.
Our free booklets “Jesus Christ – A Great Mystery”; “Do You Know the True Jesus of the Bible?”; “God is a Family;” and “Is God a Trinity?” are replete with so much more invaluable information.
(To be Continued)
Lead Writers: Brian Gale (United Kingdom) and Norbert Link