Begotten

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Begotten

A Tale of Three Fathers

by baldilocks

Months back, I was talk­ing with my Amer­i­can dad about Jesus the Christ. In real­ity, the con­ver­sa­tion was an episode of a years-​long series which had been on hia­tus for a time, mostly due to the insta­bil­ity in my liv­ing arrange­ments in the last three years. I am happy to have it start up again. We agree about 99% of the time.

This time, we were dis­cussing His ori­gin and had a very short dif­fer­ence of opin­ion about it. Dad has been a Chris­t­ian longer than I have, is a lay pas­tor, and, there­fore, reads the Bible daily. For some rea­son, how­ever, he briefly thought that God had cre­ated Jesus, while I pointed out that God had cre­ated the angels and us, but that Jesus’ was God’s son and, there­fore, not fash­ioned from the dust like Adam, nor “man­u­fac­tured” like the angels. (I use that word because I don’t how God made the angels.)

I said that God begat Jesus. In response, Dad asked me to show him where it says this. Bemused, I did a quick search using my phone. When the results popped, I almost slapped myself because the first one was so obvious.

For God so love the world, that he gave his only begot­ten Son, that whoso­ever believeth in him should not per­ish, but have ever­last­ing life.

John 3:16

Here’s some­thing we all are prone to doing when perus­ing a text with which we are very famil­iar: for­get­ting what cer­tain words and con­cepts mean, and, there­from, the impli­ca­tions. I do it; my dad does it; we all do it. It’s part of our human fallibility.

Switch­ing to my Kenyan father, he is an athe­ist. (I look for­ward to the day when my fathers meet each other.) Roughly once a year, Father, a jour­nal­ist, writes a col­umn declar­ing such and out­lin­ing a few of the things he finds incon­sis­tent in Chris­tian­ity. It turns out that one of the prob­lems he has is with the idea of God pro­cre­at­ing. Father tends to look at it from the way we pro­cre­ate and, there­fore, tosses out the idea.

One of the most
dif­fi­cult things to do is to talk to an athe­ist about faith – the notion that
some things can be assumed to be true with­out evi­dence that they are. Fol­low­ing
onto that is the dif­fi­culty of talk­ing with them about an exist­ing real­ity
which has dif­fer­ent rules than the one we all see and that our per­cep­tion is (mostly)
lim­ited to the latter.

We don’t know how God begat Jesus, but we Chris­tians
take it on faith that it’s true. And we also accept that there are some things
about God and about that other exist­ing real­ity that we are not able to
under­stand, at least not while we are in this real­ity – unless God chooses to reveal
them to us.

I am reminded that,

8 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nei­ther are your ways my ways, saith the Lord.

9 For as the heav­ens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.

Isa­iah 55:89

And I’m con­tent to let our Father reveal Him­self when­ever and to whomever He wants.

Oh, yeah … Merry Christmas.

Juli­ette Akinyi Ochieng has been blog­ging since 2003 as baldilocks. Her older blog is here. She pub­lished her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game in 2012.

Fol­low her on Face­book, Twit­ter, MeWe, and Gab.

Hit Da Tech Guy Blog’s Tip Jar or hit Juliette’s!


A Tale of Three Fathers

by baldilocks

Months back, I was talking with my American dad about Jesus the Christ. In reality, the conversation was an episode of a years-long series which had been on hiatus for a time, mostly due to the instability in my living arrangements in the last three years. I am happy to have it start up again. We agree about 99% of the time.

This time, we were discussing His origin and had a very short difference of opinion about it. Dad has been a Christian longer than I have, is a lay pastor, and, therefore, reads the Bible daily. For some reason, however, he briefly thought that God had created Jesus, while I pointed out that God had created the angels and us, but that Jesus’ was God’s son and, therefore, not fashioned from the dust like Adam, nor “manufactured” like the angels. (I use that word because I don’t how God made the angels.)

I said that God begat Jesus. In response, Dad asked me to show him where it says this. Bemused, I did a quick search using my phone. When the results popped, I almost slapped myself because the first one was so obvious.

For God so love the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

John 3:16

Here’s something we all are prone to doing when perusing a text with which we are very familiar: forgetting what certain words and concepts mean, and, therefrom, the implications. I do it; my dad does it; we all do it. It’s part of our human fallibility.

Switching to my Kenyan father, he is an atheist. (I look forward to the day when my fathers meet each other.) Roughly once a year, Father, a journalist, writes a column declaring such and outlining a few of the things he finds inconsistent in Christianity. It turns out that one of the problems he has is with the idea of God procreating. Father tends to look at it from the way we procreate and, therefore, tosses out the idea.

One of the most difficult things to do is to talk to an atheist about faith – the notion that some things can be assumed to be true without evidence that they are. Following onto that is the difficulty of talking with them about an existing reality which has different rules than the one we all see and that our perception is (mostly) limited to the latter.

We don’t know how God begat Jesus, but we Christians take it on faith that it’s true. And we also accept that there are some things about God and about that other existing reality that we are not able to understand, at least not while we are in this reality – unless God chooses to reveal them to us.

I am reminded that,

For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord.

For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.

Isaiah 55:8-9

And I’m content to let our Father reveal Himself whenever and to whomever He wants.

Oh, yeah … Merry Christmas.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng has been blogging since 2003 as baldilocks. Her older blog is here.  She published her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game in 2012.

Follow her on Facebook, Twitter, MeWe, and Gab.

Hit Da Tech Guy Blog’s Tip Jar or hit Juliette’s!