What's In a Name? Eternal Father
For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us;
And the government will rest on His shoulders;
And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9:6)
This title of Christ’s is fascinating and intriguing. Remember that this verse is describing the infant of Isaiah 7:14:
Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel.
The titles provided by Isaiah in 9:6 are introduced as belong to the child who will be born, the son who will be given, the One who shall be called Immanuel, whose name shall be Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.
Yet this child, the reader now learns, is also a father. More than that, He is the Eternal Father. This verse is not to say that within the Trinity, Jesus the Son is God the Father. No, for indeed the Trinity is comprised of the three distinct persons of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
Literally, this phrase means “Father of Eternity”1. Jesus has said, "I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.” (Revelation 22:13).
As S. Lewis Johnson observes, in this verse,
The infinite is an infant. The infant is infinite.2
Says John MacArthur,
That [the phrase, “Eternal Father"] is a clear reference to the biblical truth that Christ is Creator of heaven and earth. In Hebrews 1:10-12 God the Father says to Christ the Son, “You, Lord, in the beginning laid the foundation of the earth, and the heavens are the works of Your hands; they will perish, but You remain; and they all will become old like a garment, and like a mantle You will roll them up; like a garment they will also be changed. But You are the same, and Your years will not come to an end.”
Nothing is too complex for the Creator and Sustainer of everything. Infinity and all its intricacies are nothing to Him who is the Alpha and Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End. 1
Jesus Christ is the Eternal Father in that He is the Author and life giver of all.
He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities--all things have been created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together. (Colossians 1:15-17)
God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways, in these last days has spoken to us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the world. And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, having become as much better than the angels, as He has inherited a more excellent name than they. (Hebrews 1:1-4)
By Him the earth and the universe were created, and by Him is eternal life granted to those who will believe.
As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up; so that whoever believes will in Him have eternal life.
“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. (John 3:14-18)
but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall never thirst; but the water that I will give him will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life. (John 4:14)
Truly this is indeed a divine child. Truly He alone is the Father of eternity. Truly He alone is worthy of praise, glory, and honor.
1. MacArthur, John. “The Government on His Shoulders.”
2. Johnson, S. Lewis, “The Child Who Is A Father.”
*This post originally appeared here.