and his name shall be called
Prince of Peace.
Isaiah 9:6 ESV
The third title that is given here in Isaiah 9:6 for the Christ is a rather interesting one: Everlasting Father. With the full revelation of Scripture now before us, we know that our great God is triune, three persons yet one God. God the Father, God the Son, and God the Spirit are together the triune God. Scripture tells us that Jesus is the “Christ, the Son of God” (Mark 1:1). He was sent by His Father to redeem His people, and upon ascending to the Father’s right hand, He has sent out His Spirit to indwell His people.
Yet despite the glories of our triune God, all of this can lead to some confusion when reading our present verse. The question is, namely, how is Christ both the Son of God and the Everlasting Father? The answer is simply that this title is not giving us any trinitarian revelation about Christ. Instead, father is being used here as a term of endearment toward authority. We find such a usage of father by the Naaman’s servants to the angered commander (2 Kings 5:13). Although they called Naaman “my father”, they were certainly not his biological children. In the very next chapter, 2 Kings 6:21, the king of Israel called Elisha “my father.” In the same way, this messianic title predicts that the Christ would be as a father to His people. He will rule over them with stern tenderness and with disciplined compassion.
And His fatherly reign will not be momentary but everlasting. This king will be an eternal father to His people. Of course, everlasting is another indication of the divinity of the Christ, since Moses wrote of the LORD: “from everlasting to everlasting you are God” (Psalm 90:2). Marvelously, we know that Jesus is indeed everlasting. Speaking of Jesus, John wrote, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not anything made that was made” (John 1:1-3). He was before all things with His Father, and His reign over us will be as a father for all eternity to come.