Christianity 201

April 3, 2019

Jesus Had Two Births

Today we’re back with Tom Smith who writes at the blog, “Holding to Truth in Love.” Click the header below to read this at source.

How Jesus’ Second Birth Made Him God’s Firstborn Son

Do you know Jesus Christ had two births?  It was the second birth that made Him God’s firstborn Son.

Most believers are very familiar with Christ’s birth in Bethlehem. That birth was God becoming flesh, born of the virgin Mary to become a genuine man, Jesus our Savior (John 1:1, 14; Matt. 1:18-21).  Isaiah prophesied this birth saying,

“A child is born to us…called the Mighty God” (9:6).

But do you realize that Jesus had a second birth?

The Apostle Paul spoke of another birth of God’s Son in Acts 13:33. There he told us that Christ’s resurrection was also His birth:

“That God has fully fulfilled this promise to us their children in raising up Jesus, as it is also written in the second Psalm, “You are My Son; this day have I begotten You.”

This verse speaks of God’s raising up Jesus, His Son and declaring “this day have I begotten You.”  In the Bible, to “beget” is to give birth to. God’s raising up Jesus from the dead was His “begetting” His Son, His giving birth to Him as God’s firstborn Son.

But how did Christ’s birth in resurrection make Him God’s firstborn Son?

Christ’s two births–as God’s only begotten Son and as God’s firstborn Son

First, God gave us His only begotten Son, born of the virgin Mary, to be a man in order to save us

Most of us are familiar with the famous words of John 3:16,

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that everyone who believes into Him would not perish, but would have eternal life.”

God gave His eternal, only begotten Son through incarnation to be a man (John 1:1, 14). By putting on our flesh and blood (Heb. 2:14), Jesus became the perfect, Lamb of God to take away our sin (John 1:29). How we praise Him for this!

The body of Jesus was not different from ours, except that His was without sin, having only the likeness of the flesh of sin (Rom. 8:3). As such a genuine, sinless man, Jesus was fully qualified to shed His blood for our sin. How wonderful are John’s words,

“The blood of Jesus, His Son cleanses us from every sin.” (1 John 1:7)

We simply need to pray,

“Lord Jesus, I believe into You, God’s only begotten Son!  Thank you that as the eternal God you were born to be a genuine, sinless man, with blood and flesh to redeem me, that my sins might be forgiven. I believe that You died on the cross for me and rose from the dead. Thank you that by believing into You I am saved eternally and will never perish.”

We worship God for giving us His only begotten Son to be our Savior! Here is a hymn that highlights this point.

But there is something more…

Second, God raised Jesus from the dead to be begotten as God’s firstborn Son in order to regenerate us

From eternity, as God’s only begotten Son, He had only divinity. At the appointed time, God sent His only Son to be our Savior, Jesus (Matt. 1:20-21) born of a woman. Yet He was still the unique divine Son for the humanity He put on was not designated the Son of God.

Only after He died and resurrected was Jesus’ humanity designated the Son of God. Romans 1:4 says,

Who was designated the Son of God in power according to the Spirit of holiness out of the resurrection of the dead, Jesus Christ our Lord.”

Jesus’ resurrection was the birth of a divine-human Son, God’s firstborn Son

Christ’s resurrection designated that God-created humanity Jesus put on into the sonship of the only begotten Son of God.  This was a second birth to Jesus, the birth of God’s firstborn Son. He became the first of God’s sons with both divinity and  humanity. He is God’s prototype to produce many divine-human sons (Heb. 2:10).

In fact, calling Him the “Firstborn” indicates that there are more sons to come (Rom. 8:29). In Romans 8:29 Paul said,

“Because those whom He foreknew, He also predestinated to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the Firstborn among many brothers.”

But how could we become the brothers of God’s firstborn Son?

This is something wonderful!  We could never be divine sons. Only Jesus has this status. However, through His death and resurrection we can all become sons with humanity and divinity. We were fallen human beings who are not only forgiven, but can receive His eternal, divine life to be Christ’s brothers, God’s many sons.

By participating in Christ’s resurrection, we are made the many sons of God, sons with both humanity and divinity. (We share His eternal life and divine nature, but never His Godhead.) In this way He becomes the firstborn among many brothers. We become the many “twins” in this divine-human birth, resurrection. In 1 Peter 1:3  it says,

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has regenerated us unto a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.”

Not only was Christ resurrected from the dead, but through His resurrection we were regenerated!

How can we participate in Christ’s resurrection to be the many brothers of God’s firstborn Son?

Unfortunately, what I have presented might be just a high doctrine or teaching to us without something further. That is, we might appreciate the divine fact but miss out on the practical experience.

Here is the practical application. In Christ’s resurrection He was not only born to be God’s firstborn Son. He also became a life-giving Spirit. In 1 Corinthians 15:45b Paul said,

“The last Adam became a life-giving Spirit.”

By receiving Christ, as the life-giving Spirit into our spirit we enjoy all the attainments of Christ’s resurrection.

We can see this in John 20. Early on the day of His resurrection Jesus appeared to Mary and told her to “go tell My brothers” (John 20:17) But that evening He appeared to His disciples gathered and said peace be to you, Then as verse 22 says,

“And when He had said this, He breathed into them and said to them, Receive the Holy Spirit.

The application of Christ’s resurrection is by enjoying the life-giving Spirit.

The simplest way to breathe, to receive the Spirit is to call on the name of Jesus: “Lord Jesus! O Lord Jesus!”

For us to experience the reality of being Christ’s many brothers, we need to continually breathe Him in as the life-giving Spirit in resurrection.  We also need to cooperate with the inner working of His Spirit within us so He can give life to all our inward parts (Rom. 8:10, 6, 11).

As we walk according to the spirit, being led by the Spirit, we’ll become mature sons of God (Rom. 8:4, 14) designated as the many brothers of our firstborn Brother (v. 29).

Please take a moment to pray:

“Father, thank you for sending Your only begotten Son in human flesh to die for my sins. I praise you even more that by raising Him from the dead You designated Him Your Firstborn Son and made Him the life-giving Spirit, to regenerate us to be Your many sons. Amen.”


By the same author: The Divine Trinity: Essential Bible Verses for a Deeper Study.

1 Comment »

  1. Romans tells us Jesus is the firstborn of many brothers and sisters. Based on the author’s ideas then, all true believers who are resurrected to glorified bodies experience a ‘third’ birth? Never heard of such a teaching (or even the concept of Jesus’s second birth).

    Isn’t context of Acts 13 primarily a relating of Paul and others attempting to demonstrate to the listening Jews that Jesus is the promised Messiah and that Messiah is God’s son? Is he really discussing a concept of the ‘second’ birth of Jesus? Or does the author believe there is more than one teaching in this passage?

    I am not conversant with many theological understandings of scripture but this teaching only seems to be confusing. What is the purpose of gaining such an understanding? How does it lead me to a deeper walk with God? A simple understanding that Jesus is the firstborn of what I can expect to also experience is sufficient. That His place as King above all creation is believeable without such teaching is available in many other plainly stated scriptures.

    Frankly, if anything, I could get the impression He was not the “full” son of God when He walked the earth. If I am born to a man, I am his son. That is set in stone. My position in the family can change. I may even be placed in a position of authority in the family by my Father but that action has nothing to do with me becoming a full son-simply an action that proves the point. Isn’t that what the Bible teaches us about Jesus? John 1 and 3 already tells us who Jesus is (God’s son). Why get so esoteric? Is this a common teaching in Christianity?

    Comment by Tim Hillenbrand — April 4, 2019 @ 10:14 am | Reply


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