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Volume 32 - Page 128 of 246 Index | Zoom | |
Here again the incarnation has sacrifice in view. Let us see one more passage.
"For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending His
Own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin condemned sin in the flesh . . . . ."
(Rom. 8: 3, 4).
Here once again, the coming of Christ in the flesh, was in order that He might bear the
condemnation which our sinful flesh had merited through the breaking of the law.
We believe that when the Saviour is called "The only begotten Son of God", the Spirit
of God has in mind this blessed condescension of the Son when He stooped to take upon
Him the nature of man. Now if we turn to the prologue of John's Gospel we shall find
that this is what the Apostle taught.
"In the beginning was the Word" (John 1: 1).
John does not say "In the beginning was the Son"; that is what many creeds confess, and
many believers assume to be true, but as our faith stands, not in the wisdom of men but in
the testimony of inspired Scripture, we must, perforce, reject such an intrusion.
"The Word was made flesh" (John i.14).
Here is a mighty change: here, if anywhere, we ought to read of the only begotten Son.
Let us see.
"And the Word was made 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" (John 1: 14).
When He, the Word, became flesh, His titles were Emmanuel, "God with us", "The
only begotten of the Father", "The Son of God" and "The Son of Man". Surely, if we
have no creed to support, or system to uphold, John's clear testimony in 1: 14 should be
authoritative and final.
What is the Scriptural meaning of gennao, "To beget"? If the word is used of a father,
it should be translated "to beget", and if of a mother, "To be born, or give birth". In
Matt. 1: 1-16 we have a genealogy from Abraham to Joseph where there is no possibility
of missing the meaning of gennao. "Abraham begat Issac . . . . . Jacob begat Joseph."
In this same, sixteenth, verse the word gennao is used of the mother, "Of Whom was
The words "only begotten" represent one word in the Greek, monogenes. Is it
possible that by the addition of the word monos "only", the normal, rational, meaning of
gennao should be so changed as to lose all its former meaning? To such a question we
can give no answer, but we can show that no such alchemy is practiced by the inspired
"The only son of his mother" (monogenes, Luke 7: 12).
"For he had an only daughter" (monogenes, Luke 8: 42).
"For he is my only child" (monogenes, Luke 9: 38).