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The Necessity of Believing the Son is God for faith in the Gospel 

Jesus reveals to us his eternal relationship with the Father in John 17:3-5: “And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.”

Notice it includes Jesus, "AND" yet so many make it only about the Father. In fact  1 John 1:2 explicitly states “the life was manifested, and we have seen, and bear witness, and declare to you that eternal life which was with the Father and was manifested to us—“ who was manifested?

John again tells us in 1 John 5:11-12 And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son.”

The second half of the statement of John in John 17:3-5: “I have glorified You on the earth. I have finished the work which You have given Me to do. “And now, O Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with You before the world was.”

The word “with” couples two subjects; it expresses more than one, I and you; the Father and the Son. Greek scholar A.T. Robertson translates this verse in John 17 “by the side of thyself” as the literal rendering of the language.

Gen.1:1 tells us the first thing created by God was the heavens and the earth. If Jesus had glory with the Father before the world was (before it was created), then He pre-existed as God. For only God existed at that time before creation. Therefore, it is impossible for him to be a creature, (an angel). He became a creature (man Philip. 2:5-) through the virgin birth by taking on human flesh to house his Spirit that was God (Mic.5:2).

As in Jn. 1:1, this is not describing an ideal pre-existence, but actual and conscious existence at the Father’s side (para soi, with thee) “which I had.” (Robertson’s, Word Pictures). This shows us two important points, first He pre-existed as a distinct person from the Father being with the Father, and that He shared in the same glory before the world began. Which makes him God. The only way the Son would be glorified by the Father is if he is God, for the Lord has said He will not give his glory to another. And this glory it tells us he had before creation of the world.

We know the son is God because John who wrote this also writes later in his epistle that to know the Son…

I Jn 5:19-20 “We know that we are of God, and the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one. And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us an understanding, that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life.” Here we have what is stated in Jn.17 reversed, He calls the Son the true God, not mentioning the Father. He tells us the world is controlled by the wicked one who according to Paul blinds people to the glorious gospel.

In Heb.1:10 The Father speaking of the Son, “And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning has laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of your hands... and they shall be changed: but thou art the same”(quote of Psalm 102:25). Only God stays the same and does not change Mal.3:6, creatures change, not God.

To know Jesus, the Son, whom the Father has sent as savior (1 Jn.4:14), is to know God. Jesus said “All things have been delivered to Me by My Father, and no one knows the Son except the Father. Nor does anyone know the Father except the Son, and the one to whom the Son wills to reveal Him” (Mt. 11:27). This is what happened to Peter at Cesaerea Phillipi (Mt.16). He received a revelation from the Father, stating Jesus is the Son of the Living (eternal) God. This is a necessary component to believe the gospel, it cannot be diminished otherwise one is not knowing whom they are asking to save them.

And this same revelation is what is necessary for every one of us to believe.

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