How could he be omniscient when he says, "Not even the Son of Man knows the hour of his return"? We both get the impression that the Bible itself seems to argue against Jesus being God. This question does not have a simple answer. After all, they strike at the very heart of the Incarnation, God becoming man, spirit taking on flesh, the infinite becoming finite, the eternal becoming time-bound. This is a doctrine that has kept theologians busy for quite centuries. Historically, there have been three approaches to this. For example, at the end of the last century, the great theologian Benjamin Warfield worked through the gospels and ascribed various bits to either Christ's humanity or to his deity. One solution is some form of kenosis, which means emptying. This spins out of Philippians 2, where Paul tells us that Jesus, "being in the form of God was some thing to be exploited" That's the way it should be translated. "but emptied himself." He became a nobody. What exactly did he empty himself of? That is the question. Through centuries, people have given various answers to that. For instance, did he empty himself of his deity? Well, then he would no longer be God. Did he empty himself of the attributes of his deity? I have a problem with that too, because it's difficult to separate attributes from reality. If you have an animal that looks like a horse, smells like a horse, walks like a horse, and has all the attributes of a horse, you've got a horse. So I don't know what it means for God to empty himself of his attributes and still be God. Some have said, "He didn't empty himself of his attributes, but he emptied himself of the use of his attributes." A self-limiting kind of thing. That's getting closer, although there are times when that was not what he was doing. He was forgiving sins the way only God can, which is an attribute to his deity. Others go further by saying, "He emptied himself of the independent use of his attributes." That is, he functioned like God when his heavenly Father gave him explicit sanction to do so. Now, that much closer. The difficulty is that there is a sense in which the eternal Son has always acted in line of the Father's commandments. You don't want to lose that, even in eternity past. But its getting closer. Strictly speaking, Philippians 2 doesn't tell us precisely what the eternal Son emptied himself of. He emptied himself; he became a nobody. Some kind of emptying is at issue, but lets be frank. You are talking about Incarnation, one of the central mysteries of Christian faith. You're dealing with formless, bodiless, omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent Spirit and finite, touchable, physical, time-bound creatures. For one to become the other inevitably binds you up in mysteries. So part of Christian theology has been concerned not with "explaining it all the way" but with trying to take biblical evidence and, retaining all of it fairly, find ways of synthesis that are rationally coherent, even if they're not exhaustively explanatory. That was a sophisticated way of saying that theologians can come up with explanations that seem to make sense, even though they might not be able to explain every nuance about the Incarnation. In a way, that seems logical. If the Incarnation is true, its not surprising that finite minds couldn't totally comprehend it. It seemed to me that some sort of voluntary emptying of Jesus' independent use of his attributes was reasonable in explaining why he generally didn't exhibit the the omnis within omniscience, omnipotence, and omnipresence. In his early existence, even though the New Testament clearly states that all these qualities are ultimately true of him. In John 16:30 the apostle John affirms of Jesus, "Now we can see that you know all things."