In our current series we’ve been going through an old list of questions and answers contained in the Westminster Larger Catechism published in 1648. Recently we’ve learnt about the covenant of grace by which God forgives sin and grants eternal life through the mediator Jesus Christ. This week I want to look more closely at who Jesus Christ is, in particular he is the eternal Son of God, of one substance and equal with the Father.
Firstly, we must understand that Jesus Christ is eternal. Speaking of Jesus, Paul says in Colossians: ‘For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together’ (Colossians 1:16-17). Notice Jesus created all beings. Which means Jesus cannot be a created being because he would have had to create himself which is impossible. Jesus is eternal.
Secondly Jesus is the Son of God. At his trial with the religious leaders, Jesus declares his sonship: ‘They all asked, “Are you then the Son of God?” He replied, “You are right in saying
I am”‘ (Luke 22:70).
Thirdly Jesus is of one substance with God the Father and equal to him. John refers to Jesus as the ‘Word’ at the beginning of his gospel and clearly proclaims that the Word is God: ‘In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God’ (John 1:1). Also Jesus himself teaches that he is of the same substance as the Father: ‘I and the Father are one.’ (John 10:30). This statement is such a clear declaration of Jesus’ divinity that the Jews try to kill Jesus because of his words: ‘”We are not stoning you for any of these,” replied the Jews, “but for blasphemy, because you, a mere man, claim to be God”‘ (John 10:31-33). And on another occasion they try to kill Jesus because they recognise Jesus is making himself equal with God: ‘For this reason the Jews tried all the harder to kill him; not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God’ (John 5:18).
So do you have a mediator who is the eternal Son of God, of one substance and equal with God the Father?
Joel Radford, Preaching Elder.