This is one of the big theological problems traditional Christianity faces when trying to reconcile how God (the Father) could beget a “Son” while holding on to the idea that they both lived from eternity as ONE. To beget something implies a starting point and sequence in time, while the concept of Father and Son living from eternity and being equally God suggests simultaneity (throwing the Holy Spirit into the discussion only adds to the confusion).
Many Christian theologians chalk this up as a ”mystery of faith” (therefore the strength of one’s faith is essentially measured by belief from ignorance).
However, even theologians of the strongest faith have to eventually quiet their ever-questioning brains. That is why the early fathers of Christianity were forced to concoct a way to reconcile monotheism with Holy Scripture’s seeming depiction of God as three “Persons.”
We are therefore left with this strange theological interpretation of Holy Scripture:
Jehovah God (the Father), try as He might, could not get the main players of the Old Testament to “follow His ways and commandments.” He next has no alternative but to send His only begotten Son to be slaughtered on earth to remedy the situation. So-o-o, it was not following the commandments and living a “good” life that saved you but having the faith that one of the three God’s died for your sins. If you believed this scenario (even without it making sense) the Son would go to the Father, put in a good word for you, then at the Father’s command, the Holy Spirit would invisibly bestow you with the gifts worthy of the elect.
In spite of this solution to sin, Jesus still has to come back a second time, and instead preaching love, He comes to kick serious butt. Like Father like Son. In Revelation Jesus shows us He is actually a chip off the old block by taking up the sword (like His feared and warring Dad did throughout the entire Old Testament).
Good grief! No wonder America and Europe are moving away from religion and doubt the inerrancy and divine authority of Scripture.
However, the problem is not with Scripture – it is that much of humanity has embraced a materialistic philosophy or naturalism. This causes scientists to look at the universe only from physical causes and principles, and theologians to interpret God’s Holy Word only literally.
Have you ever talked to yourself? This usually involves your worldly mind conversing with your deeper mind or inner spirit. This same type of conversation, between one’s physical self and one’s inner voice, was represented in the New Testament by Jesus talking to His Father in Heaven. It was Jehovah himself who came into the world and took on a physical body as Jesus.
Therefore, the seeming conversation between Jesus and Jehovah was a conversation between His physical or human nature and His inner, divine nature. By submitting His human nature to the dictates of His divine nature, He was able resist the temptations of the flesh and make his physical body equally divine with His heavenly spirit (which was Jehovah).
This explains why He called Mary “woman” instead of “mother.” He had replaced everything He inherited from her with divine qualities. This top-down process took place throughout God’s entire life on earth and is why He was able to defeat death and ascend into heaven with His whole body (leaving an empty tomb). This is also how the Son glorified the Father and the Father the Son. The Lord while on earth made His human Divine and thus became the Alpha and Omega.
When we do God’s commandments and implore God’s help, we too begin to change our human nature (though on a finite scale). Because of the Lord’s complete victory over human sin in the world, He alone has the power to help us (this divine help is what is meant by the Holy Spirit). So it is true that the Lord lived and died for our sins. But we have to carry the same cross and take part in the fight. This lets God know precisely what it is that we want to change about ourselves.
So the doctrine of salvation by faith alone is counterfeit theology and comes from an unfortunate misinterpretation of St. Paul’s words. The Doctrine of the Holy Trinity as representing three Persons comes from the materialistic philosophy of interpreting Scripture literally only, instead of realizing that God is the Word, and therefore shares the same infinite depth.
The Lord came into the world as the Truth. Truth is what is “begotten” from God’s infinite Love. Truth is the form and measure of God’s Love – therefore neither has existence unless they exist together and from eternity.
My new book Proving God goes into these topics in greater detail and will be made available to the public in Spring 2010, just before Easter.