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Old 09-16-2019, 09:29 AM
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Did The Son Of God Pre Exist?

All Oneness Pentecostals believe in the pre existence of Christ as the eternal God. That is the basic truth. Yet the truth expands and unfolds. Elder Ross Drysdale expounds on how Christ pre existed before Bethlehem.

Elder Ross Drysdale

DID THE SON OF GOD PRE-EXIST?

To the question whether the Son of God pre-existed, the Bible answer is yes. He did Pre-exist. But how? In Two ways. We shall first look at his Pre-existence in the Foreknowledge of God.

IDEAL PRE-EXISTENCE

God is not bound by the limits of time as we are. We think and operate in terms of past, present and future. God is an eternal Present. He calls "those things which be not, as though they were" (Rom 4:17). Thus in God's mind or plan, the Son of God "existed" countless ages before He was ever born of Mary. He had "existence" in God's foreknowledge. In fact, the crucifixion is spoken of as having occurred before the "foundation of the world." (Rev 13:8). How could "the lamb" be "slain from the foundation of the world?" In God's mind and foreknowledge! Even the Church is said to have existed in God's mind "before the foundation of the world" (Eph. 1:4-5). We Christians are said to have been given grace "before the world began" (1 Tim. 1:9). This occurred in God's mind. In actuality we were not given grace until we responded to the Gospel call. So also it is with the Son. He existed in God's mind, long before His birth took place. "Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things...but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you" (1 Peter 1:18-20). The Son of God was foreordained in the mind of God, but did not take actual existence, or become manifest, until these last times. The Son's idealistic existence was in God's mind from all eternity. His actual existence in time however is pin pointed for us in scripture.

Gal 4:4 But when the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law,

The Son's actual existence began when He was born of a woman, and this agrees with Luke 1:35. The Bible says in two places that the Son was "made". One is here in Gal. 4:4, where he is said to be made of a woman. The other is in Hebrews 2:9:

Heb 2:9 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels

If the Son is "made" how could he be eternal?

PRE-EXISTENCE AS "THE WORD OF GOD"

The idea of the Son existing "ideally" in the mind of God does explain a number of texts, especially those I have cited. However there are also a number of scriptures that speak of Christ in the Old Testament that cannot be explained on this basis. We read of God "who created all things by Jesus Christ" (Eph. 3:9); and God who "hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son... by whom also he made the worlds " (Heb. 1:2); and Christ Himself speaks of the glory He had with the Father "before the world was" (John 17:5). The answer to these texts lie in the scripturally revealed fact that the Son of God did Pre-exist, but not as the Son of God, for that would be the same as having a Pre-existed male human being. No, the Son Pre-existed as "the Word of God" ("the Logos" in Greek). He who was the Word of God in the Old Testament, became the Son of God in the New Testament. The Son of God, the male person born of Mary, did not pre-exist as a Son, per se. That would mean a pre-existent human being. But that does not negate the fact the He who was the Son of God in His earthly sojourn, had existed before in a different form!

THE MYSTERY OF THE LOGOS

John speaks of the Word (Logos in Greek) who was "in the beginning with God" and yet "was God." What was the Logos, or the Word of God?

As we have seen, the Son of God was God's visible body, form, or Temple in the New Testament times. God dwelt in Christ His Son and used Him as His own body. Whoever saw Christ, saw the Father, for God was in Christ. The Bible also teaches that God had a visible body or form in Old Testament times as well. It was not a human body of flesh, but it was a glorified body. And just as God dwelt in the human body of the Son of God after Bethlehem, so also did he dwell in the celestial body of the Word of God before Bethlehem. Whether in the Old Testament as the Word of God or in the New Testament as the Son of God, Christ has always been the visible Temple of the invisible Spirit. A Oneness "God in Christ" exists in both Testaments.

THE VOICE OF THE LORD

The glorious "Word" was the body God used when he "walked" with Adam and Eve in the cool of the evening. Naturally He would have to use some form or body to fellowship with them. They couldn't "walk" with an omnipresent Spirit!

Gen 3:8 And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden.

The "Voice of the Lord" is the same as "the Word of God". It was God's vehicle of visual communication with His creation.

"THE BODY OF HEAVEN"



In the time of Moses, the Elders of Israel were given a view of the Logos.

Exo 24:10 And they saw the God of Israel: and there was under his feet as it were a paved work of a sapphire stone, and as it were the body of heaven in his clearness.

They could not have seen God in his Spirit nature, for a Spirit is necessarily invisible. Yet they saw God's feet, and described his visible form as the "body of heaven." God has only had two bodies. In the Old Testament times it was the Body of Heaven, but in the New Testament times it was the Body of Humiliation (Phil. 2:8), which the world crucified and pierced!

"THE IMAGE OF THE INVISIBLE GOD"


The Word of God was God's visible image in the Old Testament times. He was the "brightness of his glory and the express image of his person" (Heb. 1:3). He was the "image of the invisible God and the firstborn of every creature" (Col. 1:15). When men saw Him they saw God:

Gen 32:30 And Jacob called the name of the place Peniel: for I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved.

Did he see God as Spirit? Of course not. A Spirit doesn't have a "face". What he saw was the Word, who was God's visible image and as such did have a "face."

"THE FORM OF GOD"

God had a visible form in the Old Testament times. Jesus spoke of God's "shape" as well as His "voice" (John 5:37). Paul mentions the "form of God" in Philip. 2:6. A pagan king once saw the "form" that was "like" the Son of God (Daniel 3:25). This "form" was the "Word of God." This "form of God" was later changed into the "form of Man" at the Incarnation for the purpose of redemption (Phil. 2:2-8).
THE WORD WAS WITH GOD, AND WAS GOD

Now we understand the meaning of John's prologue. The Word, or God's visible form, was "with God," just as our "bodies" are "with us" wherever we are. And yet the Word "was God." Because God dwelt in that "form," used it as His visible Temple, it can be said that the Word "was God." Wherever this Form appeared, It was God Himself appearing. The same situation obtains in the New Testament dispensation. Christ, the Son of God is also God's body or form. The Father is said to be "with" Christ (John 8:29), and also to be "in" Him (John 10:38), and Christ is thereby said to be God (John 20:28). Whoever saw Christ, saw God (John 14:8-10). God in Christ makes Christ God. God in the Word, made the Word God.

It was the "voice" of God, speaking out of his "shape" or visible image (John 5:37) that said: "Let there be light, and there was light." This is how the worlds were created by the Word of God (Heb. 11:3).

Psa 33:6 By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth.

God's glorious visible Form, the Word or Logos, spoke and creation resulted.

John 1:3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

And this Word was eventually changed into flesh and became the "Son of God". "The Word was made flesh and dwelt among us" (John 1:14).
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Old 09-16-2019, 09:41 AM
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Re: Did The Son Of God Pre Exist?

Elder Drysdale

JOHN PATERSON COMMENTS


John Paterson was one of the most insightful writers on Oneness topics. His early work, "The Revelation of Jesus Christ," was used as a Godhead textbook in the infancy of the Oneness Movement. He summarized the doctrine of the Logos in very clear and logical terminology. he writes:

"How did God show Himself to Abraham, eating and drinking before him? (Gen. 18:6-8,33); or How did Moses see his back parts? (Ex 33:23), or how did the elders of Israel see the God of Israel, and did eat and drink? (Ex. 24:10,11). In the answer to these questions lies the secret of the Mystery of God: 'In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by Him; and without Him was not anything made that was made' (John 1:1-3). In the beginning! That refers to Genesis 1:1, which reads, 'In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.'

"Now what is a 'word'? Is it not the expression of an inward abstract thought in a substantial concrete form. It means this in English, but as a matter of fact, the Greek word Logos means not only the expression of the thought, but also the inward thought itself. So we conclude that the Word was the visible expression of the invisible God; in other words, the invisible God embodied in visible form; and not only this, but the word was, essentially nothing less than the Eternal God Himself, as it is written 'The Word was God' " (John 1:1). (John Paterson, God in Christ Jesus, p. 9-10).


THE ANGEL OF THE LORD

The Pre-Incarnate Christ also appeared frequently in the Old Testament times as the Jehovah Angel, or Angel of the Lord in the KJV. The Angel of the Lord was none other than the Word of God. He was the Form or Image of the Invisible God which we have already discussed. The "body of heaven" which Moses and the elders of Israel saw, the Logos or Word of God, was none other than the glorious Angel of Jehovah. In the Old Testament dispensation the invisible God was embodied in the visible form of Christ as the Angel of God. In New Testament times the same God is embodied in the physical form of Christ as the Son of God. Christ has always been God's Temple or body, whether as the Angel of God, or as Son of God. The same Oneness truth prevails throughout recorded (and unrecorded) history, namely that the one divine invisible Spirit has always had his physical Person in whom He dwelt and manifested Himself. This Christ, whether as Angel of God or Son of God has always been the Mediator between the invisible God and his visible creation. An examination of some of the frequent appearances of the Angel of Jehovah will prove very enlightening on this theme. It must always be borne in mind that we are not talking about "two distinct persons in the Godhead." For God the Father is not a Person; he is a divine Omnipresent Spirit (John 4:24). Christ, whether as Angel of God or Son of God, has always been God's Only Person, God's visible Image. God the invisible Spirit has always embodied his essential deity and nature in the visible body of His "Person," the Christ.
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Old 09-16-2019, 09:53 AM
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Re: Did The Son Of God Pre Exist?

Elder Drysdale

THE ANGEL OF JEHOVAH APPEARS TO JACOB


In Gen. 28:13 Jacob had a vision of God at Bethel. God declared to him at this time that He was "The God of Abraham and the God of Isaac." Twenty-One years later the Angel of God appeared to Jacob and told him that He was the God that appeared to Him at Bethel (Gen. 31:11-13). Thus the Angel of God is the God of Abraham and the God of Isaac!

Shortly after this a "man" wrestled with Jacob (Gen. 32:24). This mysterious "man" is called the "face of God." What Jacob saw was the Logos, the "image of the invisible God." This was the pre-incarnate Christ, then known as the Angel of the Lord.

The Prophet Hosea speaking about Jacob's unusual "wrestling match" said, "Yea, he had power over the Angel, and prevailed: he wept and made supplication unto him: he found him in Bethel... even Jehovah God of hosts: Jehovah is his memorial" (Hosea 12:4-5 margin). Here we see that the mysterious "man" who wrestled with Jacob, as a man, is none other than the Angel of the Lord, and in His divine nature, Jehovah God Himself! Jacob wrestled with God in Christ! And this is the same One who is described as the "Word" who was in the Beginning, and was God! There can be no other conclusion. Jacob's mysterious "man" is identified by Hosea as the Angel of God. And this Angel of God is defined by the same prophet as Jehovah God.

THE ANGEL OF JEHOVAH AND MOSES

The Angel of the Lord figures prominently in the life of Moses and in the Wilderness History of Israel. In Exodus 3:2 the Angel of the Lord appeared to Moses in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush. When Moses drew nigh the bush the Angel said, "I am the God of thy Father, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob" (Exodus 3:6). It is clear that the Angel was Christ, the visible image of the invisible God, because the same verse says: "And Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon God."

THE ANGEL WHO LEADS TO THE PROMISED LAND


God promised to lead the children of Israel by means of His Angel manifestation. "Behold, I send an Angel before thee, to keep thee in the way, and to bring thee into the place which I have prepared." Christ as the Angel of God led the earthly Israel to an earthly Promised Land. But in this dispensation, Christ as the Son of God, leads the "spiritual Israel," His church, to their heavenly home:

"In my Father's house are many mansions. If it were not so I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you" (John 14:2).

THE ANGEL WITH GOD'S NAME

Christ has always been the divine name bearer. This is because wherever the fullness of the divine nature is embodied, there God's throne is also. Christ, the human Son of God, was the Temple of the embodied Father, hence he had the Father's name, and announced the fact in John 5:43:

"I am come in my Father's name and ye receive me not."

The Angel of God, Christ in the Old Testament, was also the visible Temple of the Father:

"Beware of him and obey his voice, provoke him not; for he will not pardon your transgressions: for my name is in him" (Ex 23:21).

God's name was in Him, because God was in Him! Who else has ever borne the Father's name but Christ? And how else could the divine Father Spirit transfer His name to a person except by incarnation or embodiment? The parallels between the Word of God (the Angel) and the Son of God are drawing ever closer.

THE ANGEL WHO CAN FORGIVE SIN

When Christ was here on earth as the Son of God he shocked the Pharisees by forgiving sin. In Luke 5:20 he said to the palsied man:

"Thy sins are forgiven thee."

The Pharisees remonstrated, reasoning that only God could forgive sins. Christ responded to them by announcing:

"The Son of man hath power upon earth to forgive sins" (Luke 5:24)

Because God the Father was incarnate in the Son, the Son could forgive sins.

"Whatsoever I speak therefore, even as the Father said unto me, so I speak." (John 12:50).

This makes Christ, the God-man, the mediator between sinful men and a sinless God.

The Angel of God in the Old Testament also "had power upon the earth" to forgive sins:

"Provoke him not; for he will not pardon your transgressions" (Ex. 23:21).

To power to retain or pardon transgressions was a prerogative of the Angel of the Lord. This Angel had this power because God Himself was embodied in Him and functioned through him. Just as the "God-man" was a mediator between sinners and God in the New Testament times, so also was the "God-Angel" a similar mediator in Old Testament times. In either dispensation, Christ (whether as Word of God or Son of God) is the One mediator and the only "Person" with power to forgive sins. And the basis for this is the same in both time periods, namely, God (with His name) was in Christ!

THE ANGEL WHO MUST BE OBEYED

The Angel of God is to be obeyed as God Himself:

"Beware of him and obey his voice, provoke him not" (Ex. 23:21).

Why is it? Because the words of the Angel are actually the words of God Himself who is embodied in Him:

"But if thou shalt obey his voice, and do all that I speak..." (Ex 23:22).

The Angel's "voice" is actually God "speaking". When the same Angel-Word was made flesh ("and the Word was made flesh"), and became the Son of God, the exact same situation prevailed. The Son said:

"The words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works" (John 14:10).

God has always used His Form or Image as His "Mouthpiece," so to speak. The results of obeying the Angel of God are the same as obeying the Son of God: deliverance from enemies (v. 22-23), a blessing through bread (Lord's Supper) and water (Baptism in Jesus' name), and divine healing (v. 25), and of course a new home on "the other side of Jordan."

THE ANGEL OF THE COVENANT

The most positive identification of the Son of God with the pre-incarnate Angel of the Lord is found in Malachi's prophecy. In the first verse of the third chapter we read:

"Behold I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me."

This was clearly John the Baptist who was the preparing messenger for Christ, the Son of God. Mark 1:2 applies this to John the Baptist. Then the next thing that is to happen is

"The Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly appear in His temple, even the Angel of the Covenant, whom ye delight in" (Mal. 3:1 margin).

The Angel of the Lord, who walked the earth in a "celestial body" would now become the Son of God in a new "flesh blood" human body.
The Angel of God had delivered to Israel the Old Covenant (Heb. 12:25-26, Acts 7:53, Gal. 3:19). Now the same Angel or Messenger of the Covenant appears on earth as a man to deliver the New Covenant:

"This is the Covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; and their sins and iniquities will I remember no more" (Heb. 10:16-17). In the Old Testament as the Angel of God, the Christ delivered the Old Covenant to the Old Israel. Now in the New testament, as the Son of God, He delivers the New Covenant to the New Israel.

THE ANGEL OF THE LORD AS REDEEMER


The Angel of the Lord is also designated as the "Angel of His Presence":

"In all their affliction he was afflicted, and the Angel of His presence saved them: in his love and in his pity he redeemed them..." (Isa 63:9).

And this verse is given as an explanation of the preceding one which said Jehovah "was their Saviour" (Isa. 63:8).

What does it mean when the Jehovah-Angel is called the Angel of God's Presence? It means exactly what it implies. God's very presence, his essence or nature, is embodied in this Angel. The Angel is God manifested in a visible Form. We cannot strictly call it an "incarnation" for that refers only to human bodies. But, as John Paterson put it:
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Old 09-16-2019, 09:57 AM
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Re: Did The Son Of God Pre Exist?

Elder Drysdale

Quote:
FROM WORD OF GOD TO SON OF GOD


In the history of redemption the time came when he who had been God's "Heavenly body", known as the Word or Angel of God, would become the human Son of God. the Lord, "Whom ye seek," would suddenly come to his human "temple"
(Mal. 3:1; John 2:19). God's glorious Personal Form, His Old Testament Image, had to be "laid aside." The price of redemption required the shedding of blood. The Angel of Jehovah, the Word, was a celestial body. (Ex. 24:10). It was not composed of "flesh and blood". It was visible and tangible, but lacked the key elements for salvation, namely blood that could be shed, and flesh that could be pierced (Heb. 9:22). It had served its purpose. So the Scriptures tell us that the "Word was made flesh and dwelt among us" (John 1:14). This mystery occurred through the process of the Virgin Birth. The glorious body of the Old Testament Word was transformed into a flesh body known as the Son of God. There was no Son of God until the flesh body emerged from the womb of the Virgin Mary:

"Therefore that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God" (Luke 1:35).

"God sent forth His Son made of a woman" (Gal. 4:4).

The Bible says that this "Word made flesh," known as the Son of God, "dwelt among us" (John 1:14). The Greek word for dwelt is "tabernacled" or "pitched his tent". Now if the Son of God is a tabernacle or tent, then someone must live in it, for that's what tabernacles are for! And Christ very unmistakably revealed who was living in the tabernacle of his fleshly body:

"The Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works" (John 14:10).

Paul agreed to this when he said:

"In Him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily" (Col. 2:9).

So just as the Word had been God's Temple or body in the Old Testament, so the "Word was made flesh", the Son of God, continues to be the temple of God in New Testament times.

Paul talks of this "transformation of bodies" in Philippians the second chapter. He speaks of Christ who had been in the "form of God" and was the visible equivalent of the invisible God in earlier times (Philip. 2:6). This "form" was the Angel of God, and the "Body of Heaven." However Paul tells us that this "body" or "form" was exchanged for the "form of a servant" and the "likeness of a man" (v. 7). This is when the "Word was made flesh" and the whole idea of Christ laying aside the glorious "form of God" and taking upon himself the "fashion of a man" was for the purpose of dying on the cross for our sins (v.8).
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Old 09-16-2019, 11:01 AM
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Re: Did The Son Of God Pre Exist?

God didn't have a human body? It was a glorified body?

Abraham washed the feet of a glorified body, and his wife made the glorified body lunch? So, the Body wasn't God, but a space suit, He put on and off?
Mike, you need to find the skinny answer to all of this, because your buddy Drysdale is as confusing as you.
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Old 09-16-2019, 11:03 AM
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Re: Did The Son Of God Pre Exist?

Thank you Mike for the post. Good stuff.
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Old 09-16-2019, 11:07 AM
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Re: Did The Son Of God Pre Exist?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael The Disciple View Post
Paul talks of this "transformation of bodies" in Philippians the second chapter. He speaks of Christ who had been in the "form of God" and was the visible equivalent of the invisible God in earlier times (Philip. 2:6). This "form" was the Angel of God, and the "Body of Heaven." However Paul tells us that this "body" or "form" was exchanged for the "form of a servant" and the "likeness of a man" (v. 7). This is when the "Word was made flesh" and the whole idea of Christ laying aside the glorious "form of God" and taking upon himself the "fashion of a man" was for the purpose of dying on the cross for our sins (v.8).
Well, Brother Drysdale doesn't understand Elizabethan English.
Therefore maybe he should of read this....

Christian Standard Bible
who, existing in the form of God, did not consider equality with God as something to be exploited.

Contemporary English Version
Christ was truly God. But he did not try to remain equal with God.

Good News Translation
He always had the nature of God, but he did not think that by force he should try to remain equal with God.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
who, existing in the form of God, did not consider equality with God as something to be used for His own advantage.


John 14:28
You heard Me say, 'I am going away, and I am coming back to you.' If you loved Me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father, because the Father is greater than I.

Mike, this is simple, the form of God is spiritual, Jesus is physical, and now He is spiritual within His Church/the Body of Christ/The True Israel of God.

You been studying the Oneness since 1979? Maybe you should of studied One God since 1979.
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Old 09-16-2019, 11:14 AM
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Re: Did The Son Of God Pre Exist?

Just a reminder YET AGAIN, Phil 2 is NOT ABOUT INCARNATION or preincarnate existence.
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Old 09-16-2019, 11:15 AM
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Re: Did The Son Of God Pre Exist?

Drysdale is at best Nestorian, possibly Apollinarian, in His Christology. Mike apparently is a Drysdalite.
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Old 09-16-2019, 11:17 AM
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Re: Did The Son Of God Pre Exist?

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Originally Posted by Esaias View Post
Drysdale is at best Nestorian, possibly Apollinarian, in His Christology. Mike apparently is a Drysdalite.
That is very interesting observation.
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