Author: Ron Graham
Is God Flesh and Bone?
—And other related questions.
The Bible tells us about the nature of God. However, there is much that is not told. When human beings claim to know more about God than the Bible reveals, they tend to make a god in the likeness of a human being (Romans 1:22)
"Claiming to be wise they became fools. They changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image like corruptible man..." Romans 1:22
That image may be carved out of wood or stone, or it might be an idea taught by false prophets who claim to understand mysteries through new revelations.
1 Does God have a Body of Flesh and Bone?
Jesus spoke to the woman at the well about God "the Father". He said, "God is spirit and those who worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth" (John 4:23-24)
So here the Bible tells us that God our Father is spirit. Nowhere in the Bible are we told that God our Father is flesh.
Jesus Christ as God in the Flesh
As God’s unique Son, Jesus Christ is eternal like his Father, and through him all things were created (John 1:3, Colossians 1:17)
Jesus Christ was the Word who was in the beginning with God, and who was God. He was the Son of God. He became flesh and lived among us. (John 1:1-3,14)
Jesus was raised up in the flesh from the death and burial of his body. The disciples could see he had flesh and bone (Luke 24:36-43).
After that, he ascended to heaven and was glorified (John 17:4-5). His body of flesh and bone was glorified with immortality, and is no longer corruptible flesh (1Timothy 6:14-16). "For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily" (Colossians 2:9 NKJV)
We don't know what he is like now. John says, "Beloved, we are now children of God, but it has not yet been revealed what we shall be. But we do know that when he is revealed we shall be like him for we shall see him as he is" (1John 3:2-3).
Whilst what we have said about Jesus is important, our question is really about our Heavenly Father. So now we ask...
2 Was God our Father Ever a Man?
Man, including male and female, was created in God’s image, (Genesis 1:26-27). God was not made in man’s image.
Flesh and bone is part of creation. God is not part of creation. He is the Creator, not a creature (Genesis 1:27, 2:21-23).
Behind our question, Was God Ever a Man, is the idea of progress. Did God start out low, and did he grow? Has God become greater, wiser, and more powerful by stages? Does he continue to advance?
We can answer this question by thinking about God’s "eternal purpose". (Ephesians 3:11)
God’s Eternal Purpose
The fulfillment of God’s purpose unfolds by stages and is completed by Christ. However, the purpose itself was already complete in God’s mind from eternity, before the world existed. God has never changed that purpose and never will.
If God had a human body back in the beginning of his progress, then didn't he also have a human mind to match? How could even a brilliant human mind conceive the unchangeable and eternal purpose in all its amazing detail, and with no mistake? That would be far above what human minds can think (Isaiah 55:8-9).
God has always had the same fullness of Deity. His mind was never immature. That's why he was able to have his unchangeable purpose fully in his mind from all eternity. God was never a human being with man’s limited understanding.
3 Does God Have a Father and Mother?
The Bible teaches that God our Father has always existed. He was not born, nor shall he die. The Bible often says, "From everlasting to everlasting you are God" (Psalm 90:1-2).
If God our Father has parents, then they must also exist from everlasting to everlasting —and therefore exist now. Moreover, they must, in their turn, have parents and grandparents —an infinite number of divine fathers and mothers who all exist now.
No such thing is taught in the Bible. However it is possibly this kind of thing that Paul referred to when he warned against "endless genealogies" (1Timothy 1:4).
Paul writes, "There is one God and Father of all who is above all, and through all, and in you all" (Ephesians 4:4-6). This leaves no place for any parents of God —let alone infinite generations of them.
The scriptures shine some light on the nature of God. In this lesson we have learned that...
- God our heavenly Father does not have a body of flesh and bone, but is a spirit.
- God our Father was never a man.
- God our Father is from everlasting to everlasting. He has no parents, no beginning, no end.
- From eternity, before the world existed, God has always had an unchangeable and predetermined purpose.
- God has not become greater, wiser, and more powerful by stages. He has always been the same mighty God exalted. He always will be.