These three words, original, un-borrow, un-derived, have sometimes become the biggest objection as to what the Bible says on the subject matter. Does it mean that Jesus was never really begotten? Does it mean that he was never actually given His life from His Father?
Because that is the assumption that people draw from. It’s real easy to misread something when we don’t have everything available from the subject.
Selected Messages 1, p 296:
“But the life of Christ was unborrowed. No one can take this life from Him. “I lay it down of myself” (John 10:18), He said. In Him was life, original, unborrowed, underived.”
Lets read the statement in it’s full context.
“In him was life; and the life was the light of men” (John 1:4). It is not physical life that is here specified, but immortality, the life which is exclusively the property of God. The Word, who was with God, and who was God, had this life. Physical life is something which each individual receives. It is not eternal or immortal; for God, the Life-giver, takes it again. Man has no control over his life. But the life of Christ was unborrowed. No one can take this life from Him. “I lay it down of myself” (John 10:18), He said. In Him was life, original, unborrowed, underived. This life is not inherent in man. He can possess it only through Christ. He cannot earn it; it is given him as a free gift if he will believe in Christ as His personal Saviour. “This is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent” (John 17:3). This is the open fountain of life for the world.” – Selected Messages, book 1, p. 296.2
Here we see so very plain, that the original, un-borrowed, un-derived life can be given. Christ was given original, un-borrowed, un-derived life. He didn’t borrow it, he didn’t derive it, he was given it. It originated from God, the Father. Did you notice that this original, unborrowed and underived life can also be given to man? Yes, we too, can receive it from and thru Christ.
John 5:26 tells us this plainly:
“For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself;”
Here’s a thought or question for you. What kind of life does the Father have in Himself? The answer is original, un-borrowed, un-derived life.
And what kind of life was Christ given? It’s the same life that is in the Father. And since Christ received His Father’s life, then He is also, self-existent.
Question: Does the Father’s original, un-borrowed, un-derived life really flow through the Son?
“All things Christ received from God, but He took to give. So in the heavenly courts, in His ministry for all created beings: through the beloved Son, the Father’s life flows out to all; through the Son it returns, in praise and joyous service, a tide of love, to the great Source of all.” – Desire of Ages, p. 21
All things, Christ received from the God. Does that include life?
If you read a little further in that statement, we are told, YES.
And all things means that God gave not only His life, but even His own Spirit to His Son.
“He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?” The Father GAVE HIS SPIRIT without measure to HIS SON, and we also may partake of its fullness.”
— E.G. White, Review and Herald, November 5, 1908
So the Father gave this life to His Son and through Christ it can be given to us also.
Whose life is it that flows out thru the Son? The Fathers life.
What kind of life is it? It is original, un-borrowed, un-derived life.
And Christ has that life, by being the only Begotten Son of God.
It is interesting to note, that so many hinge their thoughts on this statement without even truly understanding it. It’s a basis they try to explain for how and why Jesus was co-eternal and co-equal with God (the Father) and it somehow supports the Trinity doctrine. They put one line from the Spirit of Prophecy not only before the Bible (John 5:26), but without researching the complete quote and thought from the rest of the Spirit of Prophecy.
And so it is shown and proven that it is actually a non-trinitarian statement.
So for those people in leadership roles in the church, we dedicate this next fact and book quote. Because, these one-line thoughts have come from the top. You see, Sister White had an amazing collection of books from other authors. And this would happen to include this one from Rev. John Cumming, who published 180 books in the 1800’s. This book shown below is from 1856. About 55 years before similar language was used in the Spirit of Prophecy.