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Don Stewart :: Why Was Jesus Called the Only Begotten Son?

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Don Stewart

In a number of places in Scripture Jesus is called the only begotten Son.

For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16).

Does Begotten Mean Born Or Generated?

It has been argued that the idea behind begotten is born or generated. Jesus became God's Son at a point in time.

Was Jesus Begotten In Eternity?

Some argue that Jesus was begotten in eternity, not time. At some point in eternity past Jesus became God's Son. He was not the eternal Son of God.

Jesus Was The Unique Of God

There is also the position that the Greek term monogenese means "unique." The idea behind the word has nothing to do with time - it has to do with His unique character. Consequently it has nothing to do with the time when Jesus became the Son.

Summary

Jesus is called the only begotten Son. There has been much discussion as to what is meant by the term "only begotten." Some feel it means that Jesus' existence began at some point in time. However the Bible clearly says this is not the case. Others believe that Jesus was begotten in eternity past as God's Son. It has also been argued that the word translated only begotten actually means unique.

CONTENT DISCLAIMER:

The Blue Letter Bible ministry and the BLB Institute hold to the historical, conservative Christian faith, which includes a firm belief in the inerrancy of Scripture. Since the text and audio content provided by BLB represent a range of evangelical traditions, all of the ideas and principles conveyed in the resource materials are not necessarily affirmed, in total, by this ministry.