ERAS Cannot Distinguish The Spirit from the Son And Father

Eternal generation, the immaterial procession of Logos from God, best explains how God is three yet a unity.

Eternal Relations of Authority and Submission (ERAS) does not articulate how the Spirit can be distinguished from the Father and Son. In short, it cannot explain our worship or liturgical practice of baptizing in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

 

Christians speak of the Son as being “the only begotten Son” (John 3:16) from all time to give words to how they can confess the oneness of God and say: “To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever!” (Rev 5:13).

If God sired the Son from all time, then the Son’s filial relationship to the Father has always described their relationship. It was an eternal begetting or an eternal generation.

Recently a number of Christians have either denied eternal generation, supplanted it, or at the very least have redefined it. The new paradigm takes the name Eternal Relations of Authority and Submission (ERAS).

At least two major obstacles stand before ERAS. First, how can one God eternally obey the one God? That implies two wills. But God is one and so has one will. So he cannot obey his own will.

Second, and what I want to focus on here, ERAS does not articulate how the Spirit can be distinguished from the Father and Son. In short, it cannot explain our worship or liturgical practice of baptizing in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Word

The earliest Christians developed the key analogy to explain their worship by calling the Son, the Logos or the Word (John 1:1). As word follows thought and can be said to be ours and yet not quite the same as us, the Word of God is God and yet not quite the same as the Father.

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