This verse in John 10:30 “I and the Father are one” has been a bone of contention among religious leaders. This has been used as one of the bases for the Trinitarian concept of the “godhead”. To understand this quote one has to read chapter John 10:24-40 regarding the narrative.
From the context of this narrative, the following become clear:
1. The verse does not mean that Jesus and the Father are equal since the “Father is greater than all”.
Also, it does not mean that they have “oneness of power or essence/substance” as other commentators teach. Remember that when Jesus spoke those words, he was still on earth as a man/anthropos, flesh-composed unlike the Father who is spirit-composed, although man-Jesus was an incarnation of Creator YHVH-Elohim or Lord God. Similarly, it does not mean that the Father and man/anthropos-Jesus have the same knowledge of the future, as saith Jesus in Mark 13:32, “that day and that hour, there is knoweth, not the angels, nor the Son, but the Father only”. Man-Jesus did not have that knowledge as the Father
2. To the Jews of that time, the verse meant to them that he, being man, was “like the Father, is also “god”. That seemed to them to be blasphemy, so they picked up stones. Their reason is here given in express words, “because that Thou, being a man, makest thyself God” (John 10:33). While only God the Father should be worshipped, to the Jews of his time, they cannot believe that Jesus also defined “man as god“,(although not to be worshipped). Similarly, in the verse “Before Abraham was born, I am” the Jews again picked up stones to stone him, as they knew patriarch Abraham was older than him. Yet, Jesus defined man as “god”. What is “god”? is a question that has been explained in another post.
3. Rather, the verse to be “one“, clearly meant by Jesus to be about him, having been given the Holy Spirit by the Father at River Jordan, as in Matthew 3:16. This is the empowering spirit that made him “one” with the Father and from then on, miraculous works of man-Jesus came about(and not before). Notice verse John 10:38 “But if I do them, even though you do not believe me, believe the works, that you may know and understand that the Father is in me, and I in the Father.”
John 10:30 has been used to mean anything but the truth to explain it, but unfortunately, with misinformation. It has also been a foundational teaching to Trinity that has been deconstructed. But, the Holy Spirit guides us to the truth as in John 16:13,
Truly, the presence of the Holy Spirit in Jesus made him “one“ with the Father as we will be “one” with the Father and his Son-Jesus with the Holy Spirit “in us“. This is the energy/power that will empower us to fulfill the goal in “oneness doctrine“.
Jesus is the author and finisher of our faith. He is the pioneer/trailblazer towards our salvation from eternal death. And because of him and through him, we will be “one”. As the prophecy in Genesis 2:24 that we “shall be one flesh” , this time with the “ongoing creation” by the Holy Spirit, we “shall be one Spirit”.
Hyperlink version original post: January 25, 2020
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