For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given;
and the government shall be upon his shoulder,
and his name shall be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9:6)
At first glance, Everlasting Father may be the most confusing title that Isaiah ascribes to Jesus. Does Isaiah have the persons of the triune God mixed up? For centuries the church has used this symbol to think clearly about how the one God eternally exists in three persons. The Father, the Son, and the Spirit are each God and yet the Father is not the Son and the Son is not the Father. So what’s going on here?
Since this is the sermon prep and not the sermon, I’ll leave the fuller answer for Sunday, but Isaiah isn’t blurring the lines between the persons of the trinity. The name Everlasting Father points to aspects of Jesus’ redeeming work as Messiah.
Consider what Paul says in 1 Corinthians 15. “For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive.” Just as we are all “sons of Adam” by birth, by new birth (regeneration) we become “sons of Christ” in a sense. Paul goes on to say, “Thus it is written, ‘The first man Adam became a living being’; the last Adam became a life-giving spirit (1 Corinthians 15:45). I’d say life-giving is definitely a fatherly attribute and the life that Jesus gives is eternal. His name shall be called Everlasting Father.
Randy Gruendyke will be preaching on Jesus who is called Everlasting Father this Sunday and Kenny Clark will be leading our sung worship. Would you pray for each as they prepare? And let’s use this less often sung verse of Hark! The Herald Angels Sing as a guide for our prayer as we prepare to worship together this week.
Come, Desire of nations, come!
Fix in us Your humble home
Rise, the woman’s conquering seed
Bruise in us the serpent’s head
Adam’s likeness, Lord, erase
Stamp Your image in its place
Second Adam from above
Reinstate us in Your love
Hark! The herald angels sing
“Glory to the newborn King!”
See you Sunday, Grace. Come hungry!
Song Link of the Week
Hark! The Herald Angels Sing by Daniel Renstrom
Mild, He lays His glory by
Born that man no more may die
Born to raise the sons of earth
Born to give them second birth