2- VERSES ATTRIBUTING DIVINE SON-SHIP TO JESUS (PBUH)
The Gospels speak of Jesus (PBUH) as the Son of God, and Christians consider that as evidence of his divinity. Is that consideration correct, and what is the meaning of “the Son of God”?
Did Jesus (PBUH) call himself the “Son of God”?
The first issue that we have to consider is that Jesus (PBUH) did not call himself “the Son of God” except once (John 10:36). The rest of the Gospels’ passages tell us that his disciples and his contemporaries also said so. This is what made some scholars doubt that Jesus (PBUH) or his disciples had truly uttered these words.
In his book, “The Gospel Dictionary”, Senger wrote, “That Jesus himself used this term is uncertain”. In this regard, Charles Gene Pair said, “The firm conclusion of the researchers’ studies is, that Jesus never claimed that he was the expected messiah, and he never called himself the Son of God… for this language was not in use except by Christians who were influenced by the Greek Culture."
Coleman, the prominent scholar, said regarding this title, “The disciples, mentioned in Acts, were influenced by their master who did not use this title and he did not want it, and then they followed his steps”.
- In this regard, Pfleiderer, the prominent German scholar, said in his book on early Christianity, “in the stories of the apostles as in all the secular historians of antiquity these speeches are free compositions, in which the author has his heroes speak in the way that he himself thinks they could have spoken in the given situation” (p.500f.) (Kautsky,Karl,Foundations of Christianity, 1908, pp 22)
In his book, “ Saint Mark”, Nineham said, “Anyone who has looked critically at the various modern ‘lives’ of Jesus, with their widely different pictures of him, will realize how largely their authors have had to draw on their own imaginations.” (Nineham, D.E, Saint Mark, 1963, pp 35)
(This footnote was added by the proofreader, and it was taken from his book, “Contemporary Christianity Under The Light of Science and Reason” p 44, 61)
- Christianity, its beginning and its development, Charles Gene Pier, pp 50