The first misunderstanding is related to the notion and translation of "all things" - translated from the Greek word πᾶς (pas) - which can mean "each, every, any, all, the whole, everyone, all things, everything" according to the lexicon. It can also mean "some of all types" when used collectively.
The choice of "all things" together with "committed to me by my Father" suggests that Jesus has taken over control of everything. This is not correct. In fact, the word πᾶς (pas) requires a subject - the element being described. For example, the same word was used in verses including "all the generations," "all Jerusalem," "all the chief priests" and so on - where πᾶς (pas) is all, followed by the element being described.
In the same why, there is an element being described as "all" here: knowledge. This is clearly indicated in the next sentence:
"No one knows the son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the son and those to whom the son chooses to reveal Him.”The word "knows," used twice - from the Greek word ἐπιγινώσκω (epiginōskō), meaning "to know accurately, know well" - is followed by "reveal" - from the Greek word ἀποκαλύπτω (apokalyptō), which means to "disclose," "to make known," "make manifest."
So Jesus is speaking of knowledge. He is stating that all knowledge has been given to him by the Supreme Being. The word "committed" here is taken from the Greek word παραδίδωμι (paradidōmi), which means to "to given into the hands (of another)," "to commit, to commend" and "to deliver verbally" according to the lexicon.
Thus, we can understand that Jesus is saying that all knowledge has been given - granted - delivered - to "the son." And what is to be considered "all" knowledge?
Knowing the Supreme Being. This is clearly stated by Jesus:
"no one knows the Father except the son"So is Jesus saying that he is the only one who knows the Father - no one but Jesus?
Don't be ridiculous.
This would mean that Jesus is saying that Abraham, Moses, Joshua, Eli, Samuel, David and so many others who conversed directly with the Supreme Being and followed His instructions did not know the Supreme Being. That is preposterous. Knowing the Supreme Being was the foundation of the works and wisdom of these great devoted followers of the Supreme Being.
For example, prior to Samuel's training, it says:
"Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD: The Word of the LORD had not yet been revealed to him." (1 Samual 3:7)This indicates clearly that Samuel did come to know the Supreme Being - once "the word of the Lord" had been revealed. This is confirmed at the end of 1 Samuel 3:
The LORD continued to appear at Shiloh, and there He revealed Himself to Samuel through His Word. (1 Samuel 3:21)The Supreme Being made Himself known to others like Abraham and Moses. Consider what the Supreme Being said to Abraham:
“Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your very great reward.” (Gen 15:1)Many other instances illustrate that Abraham knew the Supreme Being. Consider what the Supreme Being said to Moses:
“I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob.” (Exodus 3:6)He also said to Moses:
“I AM WHO I AM." (Exodus 3:14)Exchanges between the Supreme Being and His loving servants continue throughout the Scriptures. Are we saying that none of these devoted servants of God did not know God - even though the preached to others the glories of the Supreme Being? That is preposterous.
The key to the meaning of Jesus' statement lies within the real meaning of the word "son" - and the fact that Jesus used this word "son" in the third person.
In other words, Jesus did not say "no one knows the Father except me." He specifically used the word "son" in the third person. This is distinguished from the use of "me" - from μοι (moi) - in the first sentence. In this sentence, there is no exclusivity. Jesus is saying that the Supreme Being gave him all knowledge.
But in the next sentence he switches to "son." Why? Why didn't he continue with "me" or "I" here to confirm that only he has ever known the Supreme Being? Because it isn't true.
How many people speak of themselves in the third person. They don't. A person doesn't say to another, "the person standing here is named Fred" - they say "my name is Fred."
So Jesus is referring to the word "son" in the third person. Who is the "son" then, and is Jesus the only "son of God?"
If we were interpret "son" as offspring, this would be saying that Jesus is the only offspring of the Supreme Being. This would mean that the Supreme Being is basically impotent. While any healthy male can have literally dozens of children in his lifetime - God can only have one son? That is more than preposterous. That is downright idiotic.
The reality is that the word "son" is being translated from the Greek word υἱός (huios) which means, according to the lexicon, "in a restricted sense, the male offspring (one born by a father and of a mother)." "In a restricted sense," means this is a limited definition. It does not cover the expanded meaning and uses of the word.
Furthermore, the lexicon states, "used to describe one who depends on another or is his follower." This is not only applicable to Jesus' use of this word, but it defines the broader sense of Jesus' statement.
In other words, in this context, Jesus is using υἱός (huios) to describe a "devoted follower" or "loving servant."
This also fits perfectly with the other uses of υἱός (huios) as spoken by Jesus:
"Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children [υἱός (huios)] of God." (Matt. 5:9)We can see in these statements that the word υἱός (huios) has an expanded meaning, relating to those who follow or those who are devoted to something.
"But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children [υἱός (huios)] of your Father in heaven. He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous." (Matt. 5:44-45)
"And if I drive out demons by Beelzebul, by whom do your people [υἱός (huios)] drive them out? So then, they will be your judges." (Matt. 12:27)
Jesus replied, "The people [υἱός (huios)] of this age marry and are given in marriage." (Luke 20:34)
"They are God's children [υἱός (huios)], since they are children [υἱός (huios)] of the resurrection." (Luke 20:36)
"Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You travel over land and sea to win a single convert, and when you have succeeded, you make them twice as much a child [υἱός (huios)] of hell as you are." (Matt. 23:15)
And within the context of Jesus' statement - especially in the third person, he is referring to those who are devoted followers of the Supreme Being.
Thus we could better translate this statement to:
"No one knows the loving servant except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the loving servant and those to whom the loving servant chooses to reveal Him.”
In other words, the loving servant of God has developed a confidential relationship with the Supreme Being. This relationship is known only by the Supreme Being and only to loving servants of the Supreme Being. A loving servant of God understands the Supreme Being by virtue of having love for God and by being the Supreme Being's servant. This makes being the humble and loving servant of the Supreme Being the most exalted position, as Jesus has indicated.
The concept that Jesus was the exclusive son of God was created as a political measure during the Council of Nicene in the fourth century, driven by the political ambitions of Constantine in an effort to shore up control over the peoples of the Middle East and Europe. This led to a subsequent interpretation as the Greek texts were translated to Latin.
The Greek to Latin translators were selected through a political process, and the pressure to define Jesus as the only savior of humanity and the only son of God was driven, quite simply, by greed and political ambition to control the people by controlling religion.
As we apply the translation of “loving servant” to this and other references to "son" throughout Jesus' statements, we find that many of Jesus' teachings come into clarity and context.
Becoming a loving servant of God can only be accomplished by approaching and learning under someone who has also become a confidential loving servant of God. This provides an introduction to the Supreme Being.
Once that introduction is made, only through loving service and the unconditional mercy of the Supreme Being can one come to know and love the Supreme Being. This is the point of Jesus' statement above.
(For a translation of Jesus' statements from the Book of Matthew without institutional sectarian influence, see the Gospels of Jesus - translated from the original Greek texts.)