Clarity on Ps 2:7? “You are My Son, today I have become your Father.”

Could someone meaning of the word “today” in “You are My Son, today I have become your Father.”
How does this impact the teaching that Jesus is eternally divine?

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@clou Great question :slight_smile: First, we need to understand that the word son can be used in at least 2 ways:

  1. As in biological father and son - in the Bible we see this as an analogy (not a literal description) to help us understand the Trinitarian nature of God
  2. As in a person who has been specially blessed and set apart for God for a specific purpose

Based on the way that the author of Hebrews quotes Psalms 2:7, it appears that the (2) second use is in view. Just as God sets apart a high priest to serve Him, so God set Jesus apart for a special task. This passage is not talking about Jesus becoming a particular member of the Trinity, but about Jesus being set apart by God as Messiah / high priest.

Hebrews 5:4-5 - And no one takes this honor on himself, but he receives it when called by God, just as Aaron was.
5 In the same way, Christ did not take on himself the glory of becoming a high priest. But God said to him,

“You are my Son;
today I have become your Father.”

‘You are my son.’ The Davidic king was viewed as God’s “son” (see [2 Sam 7:14](javascript:{}); [Ps 89:26-27](javascript:{})). The idiom reflects ancient Near Eastern adoption language associated with covenants of grant, by which a lord would reward a faithful subject by elevating him to special status, referred to as “sonship.” Like a son, the faithful subject received an “inheritance,” viewed as an unconditional, eternal gift.

Was Christ begotten?

A separated but related question is whether or not Christ was begotten and what exactly that Greek word means. Below is a helpful explanation.

So what does monogenes (begotten) mean? According to the Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature (BAGD, 3rd Edition), monogenes has two primary definitions. The first definition is “pertaining to being the only one of its kind within a specific relationship.” This is its meaning in Hebrews 11:17 when the writer refers to Isaac as Abraham’s “only begotten son” (KJV). Abraham had more than one son, but Isaac was the only son he had by Sarah and the only son of the covenant. Therefore, it is the uniqueness of Isaac among the other sons that allows for the use of monogenes in that context.

The second definition is “pertaining to being the only one of its kind or class, unique in kind.” This is the meaning that is implied in John 3:16 (see also John 1:14, 18; 3:18; 1 John 4:9). John was primarily concerned with demonstrating that Jesus is the Son of God (John 20:31), and he uses monogenes to highlight Jesus as uniquely God’s Son—sharing the same divine nature as God—as opposed to believers who are God’s sons and daughters by adoption (Ephesians 1:5). Jesus is God’s “one and only” Son.

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Thank you so much for answering my question so quickly. The explanation how “son” can be used in 2 ways was enlightening. This passage of scripture makes more sense to me now. As always, I appreciate your knowledge and willingness to help people understand the scriptures.

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@clou Glad it was helpful :slight_smile: I’m so thankful for the wonderful people here on Connect and to RZIM / @CarsonWeitnauer for creating this wonderful community. It is a blessing to interact with other people seeking Jesus!

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 I notice that the original question asked for the meaning of the word “today” in that verse.  My natural assumption for many years had been that it meant the first Christmas.  So I was very surprised when I first noticed some years ago that Paul actually quoted it as an Easter verse in Acts 13:33 – God...hath raised up Jesus again, as it is also written in the second psalm, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee.
 So Paul is not applying this to Christ’s birth, but to His resurrection.  Jesus is the first begotten from the dead (Revelation 1:5), the firstborn from the dead (Colossians 1:18), the first fruits of them that slept (I Corinthians 15:20), etc.
 So the whole idea that it somehow makes Jesus a created being when He was born (or conceived) is obviously misguided.  No one could claim He first became a created being at His resurrection!
 Hope it helps!

I notice that the original question asked for the meaning of the word “today” in that verse. My natural assumption for many years had been that it meant the first Christmas. So I was very surprised when I first noticed some years ago that Paul actually quoted it as an Easter verse in Acts 13:33 – God…hath raised up Jesus again, as it is also written in the second psalm, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee.
So Paul is not applying this to Christ’s birth, but to His resurrection. Jesus is the first begotten from the dead (Revelation 1:5), the firstborn from the dead (Colossians 1:18), the first fruits of them that slept (I Corinthians 15:20), etc.
So the whole idea that it somehow makes Jesus a created being when He was born (or conceived) is obviously misguided. No one could claim He first became a created being at His resurrection!
Hope it helps!