Book Review: Jesus the Eternal Son

In its infancy, the church dealt with many heresies regarding the divinity of Christ.  There was Arianism which taught that Christ was a created being, Nestorianism which taught that there was no union between the divine and human nature of Christ, and Adoptionism which taught that Jesus was adopted as God’s son either after his baptism (the most common view), resurrection, or ascension.  This book is authored by theologian Michael Bird, and deals with the issues that are found within adoptionism.

The author is a brilliant scholar who interacts very well with the argumentation put forth for adoptionism.  Thought the heresy is ancient it still is an issue and makes its way back into the mainstream every now and then.  Dr. Bird’s interaction with the works and theories of Bart Ehrman are worth the price of this book.  He also delves is and discusses Romans 1:3-4 and Acts 2:36, which are a couple of the main passages used to support adoptionism.  In fact, these verses are used by Unitarians and Jehovah’s Witnesses to do just that.

As a self professed Church History nerd, I appreciated Dr. Bird’s looks into how adoptionism began.  He goes into great detail in discussing the early Ebionites and early Christian works such as the Shepherd of Hermas.  The book is fairly short, but is an excellent resource for all those interested in Christology.

I give it 5 stars and can be purchased here.

[Note:  This book was provided free of charge by Eerdmans in exchange for an honest review.]

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