Jesus only promises eternal life to those prepared to forsake all natural relationships.
Is Jesus the son of Abraham? Is he the son of David? Is he the son of Joseph? No! No! No! Jesus is the Son of God. Jesus has no Father but God.
Denial of the patriarchs
Paul says Abraham is “our father” (Romans 4:1). He says Abraham is “the father of all those who believe” (Romans 4:11-12). He then declares that, in making Abraham “the father of many nations,” God made him “the father of us all” (Romans 4:16-17). But someone needs to tell Paul that “the father of many nations” is not the same as “the father of all nations.”
Paul’s ignorance is not shared by Isaiah. Isaiah says to God: “Doubtless you are our Father, though Abraham was ignorant of us, and Israel does not acknowledge us. You, O LORD, are our Father; our Redeemer from Everlasting is your name (Isaiah 63:16).
Jesus disagrees with Paul and stands in total agreement with Isaiah. Jesus says the devil is the father of some people (John 8:44). To certain Jews, he refers to Abraham as “your father” (John 8:56). Furthermore, he insists he is older than Abraham by declaring to them: “Before Abraham was born, I am” (John 8:58). If therefore Abraham cannot be Jesus’ father, who then is his father? Jesus has no Father but God.
Jesus also denies the fatherhood of David. According to him, he is David’s Lord and not his son. Since the Jews expected the Messiah to be David’s son, he asked them: “How is it then that David, speaking by the Spirit, calls him ‘Lord’? For he says, ‘The Lord said to my Lord: “Sit at my right hand until I put your enemies under your feet.”’ If then David calls him ‘Lord,’ how can he be his son?” (Matthew 22:43-45).
But if the Messiah is not the son of David, whose son is he? The Messiah has no Father but God.
Denial of Joseph
When he was only twelve years old, Jesus went with his presumptive parents to Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover. But on returning back home, they discovered he was not with them. After an agonising three-day search, they finally found him in the temple, engaged in discussion with the teachers of the law. His mother chided him for his insensitivity. She said: “Son, why have you done this to us? Look, your father and I have sought you anxiously” (Luke 2:48).
But Jesus did not admit any wrongdoing. “‘Why were you searching for me?’ he asked. ‘Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?’” (Luke 2:49).
Which father was Jesus talking about here? It certainly was not “father Joseph” because the temple was not Joseph’s house. Therefore, it becomes clear that, in spite of Mary’s prompting, Jesus refused to acknowledge Joseph as his father. Jesus has no Father but God.
Denial of natural fathers
Jesus often referred to himself as “son of man” so we can fully identify with him (Matthew 8:20). Nevertheless, he only promises eternal life to those prepared to forsake all natural relationships. He says: “No one who has left home or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields for me and the gospel will fail to receive a hundred times as much in this present age (homes, brothers, sisters, mothers, children and fields- and with them, persecutions) and in the age to come, eternal life” (Mark 10:29-30).
Significantly, Jesus makes an exception in the case of fathers. Observe that the heirs of eternal life relinquish their earthly fathers but do not receive a hundredfold return of spiritual fathers. We relinquish our earthly fathers in order to have only one heavenly Father. We must have no Father but God.
Jesus declares war on all natural relationships in order to establish the preeminent spiritual relationship with God. He says: “I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law- a man’s worst enemies will be right in his own home!” (Matthew 10:35-36).
Natural bonds tie us to this world; whereas we must be totally committed to heaven and its glories. We must prefer the heavenly Father to all others (Matthew 6:24). We must “hate” all others and love only him (Luke 14:26; Matthew 22:37-38).
The good confession Peter made was in identifying Jesus as the Son of God. Jesus said to him: “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by man, but by my Father in heaven” (Matthew 16:17). Nevertheless, Jesus observed that Peter himself was not yet a son of God. He was still “Simon, the son of Jonah.”
Sons of God must have no Father but God.