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Jesus the Son of God: A Christological Title Often Overlooked, Sometimes Misunderstood, and Currently Disputed Paperback – November 30, 2012

4.7 out of 5 stars 29 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

''No christological designation is as essential as 'Son of God'; none is more important. This study makes that impressively clear by sound and careful exegesis and theological reflection in the face of misunderstandings and disputes, past and current. Once again, D. A. Carson serves the church well.''
--Richard B. Gaffin Jr., Professor of Biblical and Systematic Theology, Emeritus, Westminster Theological Seminary

''I know what it is to reject Jesus as the 'Son of God.' As a former Muslim, nothing baffled and, quite frankly, angered me more than hearing Christians call Jesus 'the Son of God.' I thought such persons were blasphemers worthy of condemnation. But now, nothing gives me more joy than to know that Jesus is indeed the Son of God and that the title 'Son of God' carries far more truth and wonder than I could have imagined. So I welcome this volume from D. A. Carson with all the enthusiasm and joy of one who once denied the truth that Jesus is the Son of God. With his customarily clear, warm, careful, and balanced manner, Carson gives us a fresh exploration of a precious truth that so many Christians take for granted and so many Muslims misunderstand. If you want to know Jesus and the Bible better, this surely is one aid that will not disappoint.''
--Thabiti M. Anyabwile, Senior Pastor, First Baptist Church of Grand Cayman; author, What Is a Healthy Church Member?

''What does it mean for us to confess that Jesus is the Son of God? D. A. Carson tackles this question in Jesus the Son of God. In this little book he lays a firm foundation to help the church understand 'Son of God 'with reference to Jesus. After considering uses of 'Son of God' in Scripture, both in general and when applied to Jesus, Carson models the way systematic theology should be based on solid biblical exegesis. Carson is especially concerned to bring his study to bear on the controverted issue in missiological circles concerning how to present Jesus as Son of God in Christian and Muslim contexts. Here he critically, but kindly, calls for rethinking new translations that have replaced references to God the Father and Jesus as his Son to make them more acceptable to Muslims.
--Robert A. Peterson, Professor of Systematic Theology, Covenant Theological Seminary --Reviews --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

Review

“No christological designation is as essential as ‘Son of God’; none is more important. This study makes that impressively clear by sound and careful exegesis and theological reflection in the face of misunderstandings and disputes, past and current. Once again, D. A. Carson serves the church well.”
Richard B. Gaffin Jr., Professor of Biblical and Systematic Theology, Emeritus, Westminster Theological Seminary

“I know what it is to reject Jesus as the ‘Son of God.’ As a former Muslim, nothing baffled and, quite frankly, angered me more than hearing Christians call Jesus ‘the Son of God.’ I thought such persons were blasphemers worthy of condemnation. But now, nothing gives me more joy than to know that Jesus is indeed the Son of God and that the title ‘Son of God’ carries far more truth and wonder than I could have imagined. So I welcome this volume from D. A. Carson with all the enthusiasm and joy of one who once denied the truth that Jesus is the Son of God. With his customarily clear, warm, careful, and balanced manner, Carson gives us a fresh exploration of a precious truth that so many Christians take for granted and so many Muslims misunderstand. If you want to know Jesus and the Bible better, this surely is one aid that will not disappoint.”
Thabiti M. AnyabwilePastor, Anacostia River Church, Washington, D. C.; author, What Is a Healthy Church Member?

“What does it mean for us to confess that Jesus is the Son of God? D. A. Carson tackles this question in Jesus the Son of God. In this little book he lays a firm foundation to help the church understand ‘Son of God’ with reference to Jesus. After considering uses of ‘Son of God’ in Scripture, both in general and when applied to Jesus, Carson models the way systematic theology should be based on solid biblical exegesis. Carson is especially concerned to bring his study to bear on the controverted issue in missiological circles concerning how to present Jesus as Son of God in Christian and Muslim contexts. Here he critically, but kindly, calls for rethinking new translations that have replaced references to God the Father and Jesus as his Son to make them more acceptable to Muslims.
Robert A. Peterson, Professor of Systematic Theology, Covenant Theological Seminary

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Crossway; 1 edition (November 30, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1433537966
  • ISBN-13: 978-1433537967
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.3 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #243,516 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
D.A. Carson has written a helpful little book that will be of interest to pastors, missionaries, Bible students and aspiring theologians. This book was originally given as a short lecture series delivered at Reformed Theological Seminary, then repeated at Westminster Theological Seminary and Colloque Réformée held in Lyon, France. It is a helpful albeit brief examination of the title Son of God and its relationship to Christology. As we would expect from Dr. Carson it is a model of solid exegesis in order to address pressing theological issues.

The first chapter is an examination of the title "Son of God" as a christological title. In this brief lecture Carson gives us a scope of the varied uses of the idiom `son of' and how it is translated into English. Here he quickly condenses a lot of Biblical data into general categories. His larger point is that the phrase "son of" is more than a reference to genetic and familial identity as often limited in the English usage of such a phrase. This data is placed into two helpful charts on pages 21 and 23-24.

This discussion lays the groundwork for discussing how "Son of God" itself is used a title in various ways in some cases referring to angels, Israel, the Davidic King and New Testament believers. Anyone familiar with the Biblical data and the Biblical semantics will already be abreast with this treatment. Nevertheless, this work gives one a general survey and could serve as an introduction to the topic. Chapter one concludes with a brief reference to the unique use of the title Son of God, which will build into the next chapter.

Chapter two is a treatment of select `Son of God' passages as it relates to Christ. The bulk of the chapter is spent in Hebrews 1 and John 5:16-30.
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Format: Paperback
D.A. Carson, `Jesus The Son of God: A Christological Title Often
Overlooked, Sometimes Misunderstood, and Currently Disputed', IVP
(Nottingham: England), 2012.

This is a nicely presented and well written book. It originated in
three lectures the author gave at the Reformed Theological Seminary,
Jackson, Mississippi in March 2012. It is a slim book of 117
pages. The few footnotes are where they belong (at the bottom of the
page they are referenced on). There is no bibliography, but it does
have a General index and a Scripture index.

The book has the following structure:

1. Son of God as a Christological Title
2. Son of God in Select Passages
3. Jesus the Son of God in Christian and Muslim Contexts

Some books are the distilled essence of years of study and reflection,
benefit from having been taught on numerous occasions, and have many
insights to impart, and do so with wonderful economy, without tedious
repetition. Others have only one or two things to say, and spend tens
or even hundreds of thousands of words to do so. This book is most
definitely one of the former.

The first chapter starts with a reflection what son-ship means in
pre-industrial society where children tend to gain their identity and
trade from their parents. This leads to a reflection of the diverse
biblical use of "son of" language, much of which reflects this
"functional" usage. This is based on the original languages, and a
helpful table shows how this "son of" language is often lost in modern
translations, such as the NIV and ESV, which smooth out such alien
idioms.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Carson does not come to this book grinding an axe, unless it is that we should all be deeper students of the Bible and should not take the meaning of "Son of God" for granted, whichever position we come down on.

He builds a careful case (within the limitations of a short, popular format) for the various meanings of this and related phrases in many passages of Scripture, cautioning against the oversimplification that often comes with knee-jerk reactions about translation issues. His criticisms of "new translations" that seek to avoid the meaning of biological sonship are expressed charitably, but show clearly the associated risks and problems.

Carson concludes with implications for evangelism and for worship, as well as for Bible translation. Anyone who wants to be able to speak informedly about the translation issues should not ignore this book.
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Format: Kindle Edition
This short work is an adaptation of three lectures that became the three chapters of this book, focusing on the title of Jesus as the Son of God. At the outset, the author explain that much of the discussion of the Son of God in contemporary scholarship focuses on it’s implication for Trinitarian theology but here he wishes to explore more of the idea of Christ as the Son of God in of itself. I enjoyed the book, especially with how Carson began this study with what the concept of “son.” Besides biological son, Carson noted how there are many “son of X” idioms with various variables of its function, ranging from identity, deserving and generating. The first chapter has various helpful charts showing different “son of X” idioms and how some of these are not translated in our English versions of the Bible but it is there in the Greek or Hebrew. It is in this context that Carson then unpacks the use of the Son of God in reference to Jesus in which the New Testament uses it to refer to His pre-existence, His Davidic root to the Messianic promise and as the Suffering Servant. Carson mentions several times that he can only look at a few passages due to space limitation but I wish he could have surveyed more passages in chapter, not because I didn’t think he did a good job but because he is capable and there is much to gleam from the passages he did analyze. I think the one thing I most appreciate about this book is D.A. Carson’s discussion about the role of exegesis, systematic theology, linguistics and Bible translations in the third chapter. While this last chapter mainly focuses on this discussion in the context of the translation of the Son of God in Bible versions used to reach Muslims, the implication of this chapter transcends Bible translation for Muslims.Read more ›
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