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D. A. Carson explains why he wanted to do work on Jesus the Son of God: A Christological Title Often Overlooked, Sometimes Misunderstood, and Currently Disputed.

I chose the topic about three years ago. Some work I had done while teaching the epistle to the Hebrews, especially Hebrews 1 where Jesus is said to be superior to angels because he is the Son, prompted me to think about the topic more globally. Moreover, for some time I have been thinking through the hiatus between careful exegesis and doctrinal formulations. We need both, of course, but unless the latter are finally controlled by the former, and seen to be controlled by the former, both are weakened. The “Son of God” theme has become one of several test cases in my own mind.

Since choosing the topic, however, the debates concerning what a faithful translation of “Son of God” might be, especially in contexts where one’s envisioned readers are Muslims, have boiled out of the journals read by Bible translators and into the open. Entire denominations have gotten caught up in the controversy, which shows no sign of abating. The last of these three chapters is devoted to addressing both of these points—how, in a Christian context, exegesis rightly leads to Christian confessionalism, and how, in a crosscultural context concerned with preparing Bible translations for Muslim readers, one may wisely negotiate the current debate.

But I beg you to read the first two chapters first. They provide the necessary textual detail on which discussion of the controversies must be based.

You can read the preface and chapter 3 here.

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2 thoughts on “D. A. Carson on the Son of God”

  1. Perhaps it’s just me but after reading this chapter I was struck by how much Islam has been influenced by Gnosticism.

  2. John says:

    I love how the quotes ends with Carson pleading for us to read chapters 1 and 2 first, then there is a link to chapter 3! Either way, I’m looking forward to reading this.

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Justin Taylor, PhD

Justin Taylor is executive vice president of book publishing and book publisher for Crossway and blogs at Between Two Worlds. You can follow him on Twitter.

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