Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Jesus Divinity

At Cranmer an apparent Muslim has inquired about my claim that Jesus is God. She says he did not claim to be God. I replied that He did, both in word and deed. Apart from the many passages in the New Testament where others identify him as God, Jesus himself did make such a claim.

Here are my elaborations on Jesus claims to divinity in word and deed.

Here is a link with lots of articles on Jesus divinity: http://www.loveliftedme.com/site/OurMinistry/StudyResources/TheologyDeityofChrist/tabid/154/Default.aspx.

Also let me lay out a few of the many passages that support Jesus claim to be God.

First, we have claims made by action. Jesus did many things only God can do. You could say he did them in the power of God, but they are the sort of things that testify to who Jesus was. The similar miracles done by Jesus followers have been done “In Jesus Name” – in other words through Jesus authority. Jesus raised the dead (Matthew 9:18 – 26, Luke 7:12 – 17, John 11:1 – 44), made or healed human eyes out of mud (John 9:6 – 7), forgave sins (Mark 2:5 – 12, Luke 5:17 – 26), and created bread and fish to feed thousands (Mark 6:30 – 44).

Jesus accepted Peter’s statement that he was the “Son of the living God”, a statement that made Jesus divine if true. See Matthew 16:16 – 17. Jesus also accepted worship (Matthew 14:33, 28:9, 17, 16 – 20, Luke 19:35 – 40, John 9:38). Only God has a right to do this. You cannot claim Jesus is not God, but is a nice holy man if he accepted the worship due only to God alone.

Jesus claimed to be God’s son, as well as to be God. See John 1:49, 3:10 – 21, 5: 16 – 47, 8:12 – 36, The Jews of the time clearly understood that sonship implied being the same thing as the father – so Jesus claim to be God’s son was a claim to be God. See John 5:18.

Jesus also referred to himself by the term that only God spoke of himself. It was forbidden to utter the name in Hebrew culture. Yet Jesus says I AM – YHWH – of himself. See John 8:58 – 59. The Jewish leaders knew what this meant and tried to stone Jesus for claiming to be God.

Jesus also claimed to be God through riddles. Jesus implied he had lived from eternity. Job 19:25 already said there would be a “redeemer” who was alive in Job’s time and who would stand upon the earth at the resurrection. Jesus said he existed before Abraham. See John 8:49 – 59. He also pointed out that David called the Messiah “my Lord.” See Mark 12:35 – 37, Luke 20:41 – 44. How could this be since the Messiah would be David’s son? Only if the Messiah was the incarnate God/Man of the Christian trinity.

Before any of this happened, the Old Testament predicted that a man, the Messiah, would also be God – “mighty God, everlasting father.” See Isaiah 9:6 – 7. So none of this should really be a surprise to anybody really paying attention.

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