Heavenly Conversations – Part 1

God is triune; Father, Son and Holy Spirit, and all the actions of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are the actions of God. While one person of the Godhead may seem more prominent in any specific action, each of these actions involves the whole Godhead.

Within the Godhead there is communication between divine persons, and it is the purpose of this brief paper to survey the snippets of such heavenly conversations which have been recorded in scripture and into which we are privileged to have insight.

Us and our1

There are a number of occasions when God is speaking and uses the plural pronoun ‘us’ or ‘our’. The normal sense of the use of such plural pronouns is that there is more than one person involved in the conversation, yet, at the same time, we know that God is one, Deut. 6. 4. We conclude from this, and the context, that what is recorded is a conversation between the persons of the Godhead.

The very first conversation is found in Genesis chapter 1 verse 26, ‘Let us make man in our image, after our likeness’. This is a conversation of intentionality involving the Godhead’s decision to create man.

The second occasion is seen in Adam and Eve’s first encounter with the Lord God following the fall, where Adam’s sin was laid bare and the whole of creation was cursed; the Godhead’s conversation conveys a degree of urgency about it, ‘The Lord God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever’, 3. 22. The conversation seems to end abruptly, as if the consequences are too dreadful to contemplate. The biblical narrative continues, ‘Therefore the Lord God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, … so he drove out the man’, vv. 23, 24. Notice how the inspired narrative moves seamlessly from a conversation between the Godhead to the actions of the Lord God, showing the God who acts in unison and unity.

The third occasion in our consideration is at the point in human history when man was of one language and anti-God in purpose. This is evident in their conversations, ‘Let us make brick’, 11. 3. ‘Go to, let us build us a city … let us make us a name’, v. 4. Jehovah’s response is clear from the Godhead’s conversation, ‘Go to, let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another’s speech’, v. 7.

The fourth occasion is when we are privileged to have a glimpse of the heavenly throne room and hear Jehovah’s conversation, ‘Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?’ Isa. 6. 8. Isaiah, having heard, or overheard, the question posed in the conversation, presented himself to go for Jehovah, and thus took up the role and mantle of prophet.

These four occasions, where we hear conversations of the Godhead, take place at significant and pivotal points in man’s or Israel’s history; the creation of man, the fall of man, separation of man by language and the call of Isaiah to prophethood.

The messianic psalms

A number of the psalms clearly have a messianic interpretation. It is not that the whole psalm can always be applied to the Lord Jesus, but parts can be. There are quotations from several psalms in the New Testament that are applied directly to Him, the incarnate Word, John 1. 14. It is these psalms that we shall consider next.

The writer of the Epistle to the Hebrews, showing the superiority of the Son over any created beings (the angels), cites Psalm 2 verse 7, ‘Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee’, Heb. 1. 5. This is a conversation between the Father and the Son. It is not that the Son suddenly became the Son. He ever was the Son. The language of the psalm is couched in human terms, as its original use by the author was temporal, not eternal. It was human and not divine. It was a king to a subject, not the eternal Father to the eternal Son. Clearly, the author of Hebrews, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, elevates what may have been considered as the mundane to the supernatural.

Hebrews chapter 10 verses 5 to 7 quotes parts of Psalm 40, namely verses 6 to 8, which is the confirmation that parts of this psalm are messianic. This conversation is between the Son and the Father. The conversation shows a number of things connected to the incarnation. First, it shows the necessity of the incarnation, in that the Levitical sacrificial system was not adequate to take away sin, ‘Sacrifice and offering thou didst not desire … burnt offering and sin offering hast thou not required’, Ps. 40. 6; Heb. 10. 5, 6. Second, it shows that in the incarnation the Son became the obedient Servant, ‘Mine ears hast thou opened’.2 Third, it shows the willingness of the Son to do the Father’s will, ‘I delight to do thy will, O my God’, Ps. 40. 8. Fourth, it shows that the incarnation is the fulfilment of prophecy, ‘in the volume of the book it is written of me’, v. 7. On the road to Emmaus, with two disciples, Jesus ‘expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself’, Luke 24. 27.

Peter, preaching on the birthday of the church, quotes from Psalm 16 verses 8 to 11.3 Verses 8 and 9 of the psalm are a personal reflection of the Lord Jesus on His life and hope. Verse 10 is where we break into the heavenly conversation. The Son is communing with the Father in full confidence of His resurrection, ‘For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption’. The Son has full trust in the Father that He will again be with Him, which leads us to consider Psalm 68.

The ascension of our Lord Jesus is mentioned around sixteen times in the New Testament. Paul, when writing to the church at Ephesus, quotes Psalm 68 verse 18,4 which makes clear that the one referred to as ‘thou’ is the Lord Jesus. This can be seen as the Father speaking to the Son about His victorious accomplishments, ‘Thou hast ascended on high, thou hast led captivity captive’. As Peter reminded his audience, ‘David is not ascended into the heavens’, Acts 2. 34. He then quotes part of the most quoted psalm in the New Testament. The scene is where the Father is speaking to the Son, ‘The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool’, Ps. 110. 1. The suggestion of Peter is that this conversation took place after the ascension. It is in this psalm that we are privy to the investiture by the Father of the Son into the Melchizedekian priesthood, v. 4. A full exposition of the significance of this is brought out by the writer to the Hebrews in chapters 5 to 7.

The Servant Songs

There are four passages in the book of Isaiah that are referred to as ‘The Servant Songs‘.5 The Son in the incarnation, ‘made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men’, Phil. 2. 7. The Servant Songs clearly point to the Lord Jesus in His earthly sojourn. Although parts of the songs are referenced in the New Testament, only one of the songs has a fragment of a divine conversation. In Isaiah chapter 49 verse 6, the Father says to the Son, ‘I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth’. This is quoted by Paul in Acts chapter 13 verse 47 as a command from the Lord. That the Son is the light is echoed, or alluded to, by several writers of the New Testament.6

The Gospel records

We begin at the baptism of Jesus, which is recorded in all four Gospel records. As Jesus comes out of the water, an event that prefigured His resurrection, the Father says, ‘Thou art my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased’, Mark 1. 11.

Although strictly not a heavenly conversation in the sense we have been using the term, there is a heavenly declaration that is worth mentioning. It takes place on the Mount of Transfiguration. It follows Peter’s ill-informed suggestion to build three tabernacles, one for Moses, one for Elijah and one for Jesus Himself. The Father speaks from the cloud that had enveloped them all, ‘This is my beloved Son: hear him’, thus leaving the disciples in no doubt as to the uniqueness of Jesus as well as an affirmation from the Father to the Son of His beloved eternal relationship.7 This experience was clearly burnt into Peter’s memory, of the occasion he writes, ‘For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased’, 2 Pet. 1. 17.



Some have argued that this is a ‘plural of majesty’. The clear refutation to this, and the claim that it is angels that are included in the ‘we’ and ‘our’, can be found in Robert Morey, The Trinity: Evidence and Issues, World Bible Publishers, 1996, pg. 94.


Ps. 40. 6; Exod. 21. 6; Phil. 2. 7.


Acts 2. 25-28.


Eph. 4. 8.


Isa. 42. 1-4; 49. 1-6; 50. 4-7; 52. 13 to 53. 12.


For example, Luke 1. 79; 2. 32; John 1. 8-10; 8. 12; 9. 5; 12. 46; Acts 26. 23.


Luke 9. 35; Matt. 17. 5; Mark 9. 7.


Your Basket

Your Basket Is Empty