The Apostle John referred to Christ as God’s only son in his Gospel narrative and in his first epistle.
The King James Version and The New American Standard Bible even translate “only son” as “ only begotten son.” This is significant, because God has many adopted children but only one “natural” child. Only Jesus was born holy, righteous, and fully redeemed; the rest of us had to be born again by “the Spirit of Christ.”
To be sure, God love’s all of his children equally, but only Jesus reflects Our Father’s attributes perfectly and naturally. Jesus is fully God; we are not. We are God’s children and “co-heirs with Christ”, but we desperately need Jesus living in and through us if we are going to reflect God’s character to the world. The apostle Paul in 2 Corinthians, chapter 3, says that “we, who with unveiled faces all reflect or contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory.” But the writer of Hebrews states that Christ is the “radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word.”
It is a perfect circle: God in Christ, and Christ in us. Christ lives because of the Father, and we live because of Christ. Christ lived in perfect obedience to his Father while on earth, and we can live in perfect obedience to Christ here on earth as long as we forever remember that our right standing with the Father is through our faith in the price of eternal death that Christ paid on the cross to gain for us our eternal life.
Our righteousness will forever be Christ’s righteousness imputed to us as a gift. Christ lived a perfect, sinless life while on earth, and he has gifted to us his perfect standing with the Father. We are now “brothers” with and “co-heirs” with Jesus!
— Brad Heilhecker