Question about your prayer article from two weeks ago
One reader wrote, “I must say I liked your response until I read your comments about Jesus, ‘How did Jesus know who God is?’ Your response shocked me [as you stated], ‘Because He knew Scripture.’ Wow, how about because Jesus is God, He is the Son of God. Do you not believe in the Trinity? The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit? Please tell me why you didn't simply say, "Because Jesus is God, the Son of God the Father." Thanks in advance for your response.
First, I want to thank the reader for reaching out. Although I feel as though the question asked misunderstands my intentions, it was a good reminder to me that even the smallest of words and word choices matter.
So, first off, yes, I believe in the Trinity. This is from our statement of faith, “We believe in one God, eternally existing in three equally divine Persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, who know, love, and glorify one another. This one true and living God is infinitely perfect both in his love and in his holiness. He is the Creator of all things, visible and invisible, and is therefore worthy to receive all glory and adoration. Immortal and eternal, he perfectly and exhaustively knows the end from the beginning, sustains and sovereignly rules over all things, and providentially brings about his eternal good purposes to redeem a people for himself and restore his fallen creation, to the praise of his glorious grace.”
Concerning Jesus: “We believe that, moved by love and in obedience to his Father, the eternal Son became human: the Word became flesh, fully God and fully human being, one Person in two natures. The man Jesus, the promised Messiah of Israel, was conceived through the miraculous agency of the Holy Spirit, and was born of the virgin Mary. He perfectly obeyed his heavenly Father, lived a sinless life, performed miraculous signs, was crucified under Pontius Pilate, arose bodily from the dead on the third day, and ascended into heaven. As the mediatorial King, he is seated at the right hand of God the Father, exercising in heaven and on earth all of God’s sovereignty, and is our High Priest and righteous Advocate. We believe that by his incarnation, life, death, resurrection, and ascension, Jesus Christ acted as our representative and substitute. He did this so that in him we might become the righteousness of God: on the cross he canceled sin, propitiated God, and, by bearing the full penalty of our sins, reconciled to God all those who believe. By his resurrection Christ Jesus was vindicated by his Father, broke the power of death and defeated Satan who once had power over it, and brought everlasting life to all his people; by his ascension he has been forever exalted as Lord and has prepared a place for us to be with him. We believe that salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name given under heaven by which we must be saved. Because God chose the lowly things of this world, the despised things, the things that are not, to nullify the things that are, no human being can ever boast before him—Christ Jesus has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness, and redemption.”
Since Jesus was 100% God and 100% Man, what I was trying to say with my comment about Jesus knowing God the Father's character because he knew the Scriptures was to explain that the 100% human part of the GodMan knew the Scriptures, was saturated in the Word, and led by the Spirit - that same way that he invites us to be.
At other times during his earthly ministry, Jesus explained that if you have seen him then you have seen the Father. Still, he also taught about God based upon his understanding of the Scriptures.
It is true to point out what you said, that he knew God because he is God - the very visible image of the invisible God, the logos, himself being the Word incarnate. In John 14:9, Jesus said, “Whoever has seen me has seen the Father.” Jesus appealed to his nature.
It is also true to say that Jesus was a student of the Scriptures and we, being students of the Scriptures and being taught by the Spirit of God, can know the character of God as well.
All this is to say is that I was trying to suggest that a healthy prayer life is fed by scripture and led by the Spirit of God, and I I was angling from that perspective. In hindsight, after re-reading, I definitely can see your point and the potential for confusion. Thanks for bringing it to my attention.