I have been a Christian for fifty-three years now and have traveled to different parts of the world and met tens of thousands of people. Many people that I have met have a wrong picture of God and this has caused people to stay away from faith in God. Either, God is the big ogre in the sky with the pointing finger filled with wrath or He is the big cuddly Teddy Bear that lets you do anything you want. Concerning the god of the cults, he is the one that drives you endlessly and religiously into a life where we hope that he mighty truly like us enough to give us a shot at gaining eternal life, but offers no assurance of such. The Bible helps us to understand who God is and how we can have a personal relationship with Him through the Lord Jesus. Jesus gives us an assurance of sins forgiven and eternal life with God the Father.
For those who want to know more about God, please read on.
Like the religion of Israel of the Old Testament, or Judaism today, the Christian believes in Monotheism. This monotheistic faith separates us from the world of paganism with its many gods and goddesses. The true God transcends the heavens and all creation making Him the Father of creation and the Eternal One. By using the word “Father”, we refer primarily to God’s role as creator and the divine author of creation. In order for the “Father” to be our personal heavenly Father, we have to be in a Father-child relationship. This relationship calls for faith in the Lord Jesus as Saviour and is the one that brings us into a unique heart to heart relationship with the Father. Jesus pointed out that this Father-child union comes through a new birth, being born again by the power of His Spirit (see John Ch 3). Every Christian believes that the cosmos demands a divine craftsman who organizes the creative order. God is the prime mover of all things and His heart is for us not against us. He is the one who loves us with a special kind of love which is called “Agape”. He always moves towards us in love (“Agape”) offering His Son as a personal Saviour through faith. Christians also believe that not only is God love but He also has a plan for each of our lives. Many believers would look upon the natural universe as a secondary reality, the first being the spiritual. Our spiritual life is more important than our natural life for without the spiritual aligned with God through faith, we will never live this life to the full. The God of the Bible does not live in heaven as many think; God is bigger and greater than the heavens as He transcends above all His creative works (1Kings 8 v27). This awesome God, who is above and beyond all creation be it natural or spiritual wants to make out of our being, body, soul and spirit, a living temple for Him to dwell in. God desires to live within our hearts making it His unique temple. We were created for this relationship but sin and selfishness got in the way. Jesus, the Saviour is our way back into that relationship. Asking Jesus to forgive us of our sins and become our Saviour is the answer.
God is Holy. Exo 3 v5; Lev 11 v44; Isa 6 v3; Josh 24 v19; Ps 22 v3; 1Pet 1 vs15-16. There is no sin found in Him Deut 32 v4. He is a merciful God Exo 34 v7. He is a just God. Exo 34 v7. He is a jealous God. Exo 20 v5; Isa 42 v8. He will not have any rivals. Exo 34 v14. He is at war with idolatry. Duet 4 v23-24; 6 v14ff; 16 v22; 32 vs16-17 (behind idol worship is the presence of the demonic which sets out to destroy mankind). He is a truthful God. Titus 1 v2; Heb 6 v18. God is eternal. Gen 21 v33. Has no beginning. Gen 1 v1. He has no end. Deut 32 v40. God is unchangeable. Mal 3 v6; Heb 13 v8.
God is all-powerful yet His heart longs for a fellowship with each of us. All the great men and women of the Bible knew His love and grace and His gospel is all about knowing Him personally. By placing your faith in the Lord Jesus you become a child of God. It is the will of God that you become God’s child not by becoming religious but by a heart to heart relationship with Him.
Today you can become His child by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ who died upon the cross in order to cleanse you from all your sins, every one of them. Not only does Jesus forgive all your sins but He gives you His free gift to us of eternal life. Where ever you are, pray this prayer. Lord Jesus forgive me of all my sins and become my personal Saviour and from this day, I will follow you. Amen. If from your heart you have prayed that prayer in faith then God has heard it and He will come into your life. Please contact me if you want to. My phone number is on the Website.
Let us carry on looking at the subject of “Our God”.
SOME OF THE NAMES OF GOD
- Elohim, God
- Yahweh, The Lord
- Abba, Father
- El Elyon, God most high
- El Roi, God who sees
- El Shaddai, God Almighty
- Yahweh Yireh, Lord will Provide
- Yahweh Nissi, Lord my banner
- Yahweh Rapha, Lord who heals
- Yahweh Shalom, Lord is Peace
We could add other divine biblical names to this list but here is just a selection.
There is one name given to God that I struggle with. The Jehovah Witnesses (JWORG) insists on calling God, Jehovah. They want us to respect, honour and hold it sacred as they believe that it is God’s true name. I have pointed out here a number of true and textual names of God yet they want us to uphold above these true Biblical divine names, a name not used before the 12th century! JW’s criticises the Christian Church for believing in the Holy Trinity, pointing out that the word “Trinity” is not found in the Bible and yet they promote the name “Jehovah” which is nowhere found in the ancient manuscripts. Jesus never used the name “Jehovah” nor did the Apostle Paul in his epistles found in most of the New Testament. There is no letter “J” in the Hebrew language nor in the Greek New Testament language. The name Jehovah derived from the Latin letters JHWH, the Hebrew being YHWH . By placing vowels within these consonants, the name “Iehovah” came into being and from that came the name “Jehovah”. The Name that is uplifted in the New Testament is not Jehovah but Jesus.
The Name of Jesus in the Book of Acts
Jesus said that “You will be my witnesses” not “Jehovah Witnesses” Acts 1 v8. Throughout the book of Acts, the Name of Jesus is lifted up: Acts 2 v22, v31-32, v36, v38 Repent and be baptised IN THE NAME OF JESUS CHRIST for the forgiveness of your sins. Also Acts 3 v16 (healing narrative) Acts 4 Peter and John before the Sanhedrin narrative v2 v10-12. Prayer meeting narrative Acts 4 v30. Apostolic witness in the city 4 v33. Ordered to stop the witness of Jesus name Acts 5 v40. Stephen’s vision of Jesus 7 v55-56.
- Philip preaching in Samaria Acts 8 v5.
- Apostle’s ministry in Samaria Acts 8 v16.
- Philip in Gaza Acts 8 v35 v37.
- Paul’s conversion Acts 9 v20 v22 v27.
- Peter’s witness in Lydda Acts 9 v34.
- Peter preaching at Cornelius house Caesarea. Acts 10 v36 v43 v48.
- Antioch Acts 11 v20.
- Pisidian Antioch Acts 13 v23-31. “…they are now his witnesses (Jesus) to our people” v38.
- In Thessalonica Acts 17 v3.
- Athens Acts 17 v18 v31.
- Corinth Acts 18 v5.
- Apollos narrative Act 18 v25 v28.
- Ephesus Acts 19 v4 v13 v17 v20 v24.
- Jerusalem riots Acts 22 v15 You will be his witness to all men. v18 v21.
- Paul before the Sanhedrin Acts 23 v11 “…as you have testified about me in Jerusalem, so you must also testify in Rome”.
- Paul, narrative before Festus Acts 25 v19.
- Paul before king Agrippa Acts 26 v16. “…to appoint you as a servant and as a witness of what you have seen of me (Jesus) and what I show you..”
- At Rome Acts 28 v31.
All of the above was said and done in the Apostolic Church to exalt the wonderful Name of Jesus, not Jehovah.
If there was ever a mystery in the Bible, it would be that God the Father is seen as divine but also that we find Jesus the Son and the Holy Spirit are also divine. Each of these persons in the Bible share the same attributes. If we understood God we would be bigger than God so the Godhead will always remain a mystery, after all He is God and far greater than our intellect and understanding. We cannot presume to give a full explanation of the persons of the Trinity. Although we will never fully understand the Godhead, one truth remains, He wants fellowship with mere mortals like you and me.
The Bible presents God as the One who exists eternally as three “Persons”, these three persons have one substance, existing in perfect unity of thought and purpose. Each of these three persons have a distinctive part in all works of creation, providence, redemption and grace. If we reject this Biblical teaching then the divinity of Jesus and of the Holy Spirit comes into question. The reality is, that if we fail to understand who Jesus is, we fail to understand the whole of the Bible. Why is this? It is because Jesus Christ is the central character and theme of the Bible, both in the Old Testament and in the New Testament; our view of the biblical Jesus makes Christianity out to be different compared to other religions, Christians claim that God has come in the Person of Jesus of Nazareth.
Please compare the following as the Bible declares God the Father and God the Son as having the same attributes and power.
- Yahweh is our sanctifier. Exo 31 v13
- Yahweh is also omnipresent. Ps 139 vs7-10
- Yahweh is our righteousness. Jer 23 v6
- Yahweh is our victory. Exo 17 vs8-16
- Yahweh is our healer. Exo 15 v26
- If the gospel is God the Father’s, 1Thess 2 v2 vs6-9; Gal 3 v6. It is also Christ’s. 1Thes 3 v2; Gal I v17.
- If the Church is God’s, Gal 1 v13 ; 1Cor 15 v9. It is also Christ’s. Rom 16 v16
- If it is God’s kingdom, 1Thess 2 v12. Then it is also Christ’s kingdom. Eph 5 v5
- God is love, Eph 1 vs3-5. Christ is love. Rom 8 v35
- If it is God’s word, Col 1 v25; 1Thess 1 v13 Then it is Christ’s word. 1Thess 1 v8; 4 v15
- God is Spirit, 1Thess 4 v8. Christ is also Spirit. Phil 1 v19
- God’s peace, Gal 5 v22. Christ is also peace. Col 3 v15 ;see Col 1 v2; Phil1 v2; 4v7
- God’s day of Judgement, Isa 13 v6. It is Christ’s day of Judgement. Phil 1 v6 v10; 2 v16; 1Cor 1 v8.
- God’s grace, Eph 2 v8-9; Col 1 v6; Gal 1 v15. It is Christ’s grace. 1Thess 5 v28 Gal 1 v6; 6 v8.
- God’s salvation, Col 1 v13. It is Christ’s salvation. 1 Thess 1 v10.
- God’s will Eph 1 v11; 1Thess 4 v3; Gal 1 v4 It is Christ’s will. Eph 5 v17 see 1Thess 5 v18.
GOD THE FATHER GOD THE SON
Deut 6 v4 John 1 v1 v14
Titus 2 v13
Heb 1 v8
2Peter 1 v1
Rev 22 vs 12-16
What it says of the Father it also says of the Son Christ Jesus. That being so, Jesus is divine.
Jesus claimed to be God
Yes, Jesus did claim to be God both in the Gospel’s and in the Book of Revelation. I know that this will upset a lot of people because they fail to understand the Jewish mind and what they, the Jews, understood Jesus to be saying back then two thousand years ago. Jh 5 v18; 10 v33; 19 v7; Matt 26 vs 63-65.
The cults and Muslims like to point out that, Jesus never claimed to be God. They are mistaken, for the Bible clearly points out that Jesus did claimed to be God and for doing so got Himself into trouble, which took Him to the cross on account of claiming divinity.
The “I AM’s of Jesus
The God of the Old Testament was known as, The “I AM” Exo 3 v14. Jesus claims also to be the “I AM” as seen in John’s Gospel. Each claim is a claim to divinity. Jesus said,
I am the Bread of Life. 6 v35, v48, v51.
I am the Light of the World 8 v12, 9 v5.
I am the Door of the sheep 10 v7, v9.
I am the Good shepherd 10 v11, v14.
I am the Resurrection and the life. 11 v25.
I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. 14 v6.
I am the True Vine 15 v1.
Where are the “I AM’s coming from? It makes no sense unless it is God the Son who is divine and who is the one to be highly exalted. He is the God who spoke out of the burning bush to Moses claiming to be the, “I AM, THAT I AM”. (Exo 3 v14. See also Deut 32 v39; Isa 43 v10)
I want you to notice that in the above seven “I AM’s” of Christ that three times He marks out that He is “life”. Only One who could be the source of life, would be God. John had already pointed out in his prologue that Jesus, the Word of God, is also life. John 1 v4. No angel is the source of life, nor any prophet, only God is LIFE. For Jesus to claim to be “life” as well as “I AM”, is an assertion to divinity,
Jesus is worshiped, as seen in the Bible
Matthew 2:11. “And going into the house they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshipped him.” Gk PROSKUNEO
Matthew 8 v2. “And behold, a leper came and worshipped Him, saying, ‘Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean’.” PROSKUNEO
Matthew 9 v18. “While He spoke these things to them, behold, a ruler came and worshipped Him, saying, ‘My daughter has just died, but come and lay Your hand on her and she will live’.” PROSKUNEO
Matthew 14:33. “ And those in the boat worshipped him, saying, ‘Truly you are the Son of God.’” PROSKUNEO
Matthew 28:9-10. “And behold, Jesus met them and said, ‘Greetings!’ And they came up and took hold of his feet and worshipped him.” PROSKUNEO
Matthew 28:16-17. “Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. 17 And when they saw him they worshipped him, but some doubted.” PROSKUNEO
Luke 24:51. “While he blessed them, he parted from them and was carried up into heaven. 52 And they worshipped him and returned to Jerusalem with great joy”. PROSKUNEO
John 9:37-38. “Jesus said to him, ‘You have seen him, and it is he who is speaking to you.’ 38 He said, ‘Lord, I believe,’ and he worshipped him.” PROSKUNEO
Hebrews 1:6 “And again, when he brings the firstborn into the world, he says, ‘Let all God’s angels worship him.’” PROSKUNEO
This word PROSKUNEO is the same word used to describe worship of God the Father: Rev 4 v10; 7 v11; 11 v1, v16; 14 v7; 15 v4; 19 v10; 22 v9.
The Ten Commandments forbid any worship to go to anyone but the eternal God (Exo 20 v4) and yet Jesus receives worship unto Himself. In the Book of Hebrews chapter one, we find God (The Father) worshipping God (The Son) v8 “But about the Son he says”(Who is saying this? The Father is doing the talking, it is He who is making the statement of worship) “Your throne, O God, will last forever”. This is God the Father giving words of worship to the Son. In v6 He says, (Who is this speaking? God the Father.) “Let all God’s angels worship (Gk proskuneo) Him” (The Son).
There is a very interesting verse found in Revelation Ch 5 v6 it reads “Then I saw a Lamb, looking as if it had been slain, STANDING IN THE CENTER OF THE THRONE, encircled by the four living creatures and the elders…” NIV. The only one to sit and have possession of this throne and to reign from there is the Eternal God Almighty. Jesus said that He was the Almighty back in Revelation Ch1 v8 (we will come back to this verse) and therefore has the right to that throne. His position of standing indicating that He is working as the Lamb upon His throne. This verse alone shows the divinity of Christ, who has the right to be worshipped.
Philippians Ch 2 “MORPHE and SCHEMA”
For more proof of the divinity of Christ Jesus, we need to turn to Philippians chapter two.
Here in Phil 2 vs 5-11 we have a clear understanding of the divinity of Jesus. Jesus, who being God took upon Himself the form of a servant. In the Greek New Testament we find the word, “form”v6, v7. Being in the form (Gk morphe). This word “morphe” means “the inward substance and the outward appearance of.” Therefore, Jesus is the inward substance of God and the outward appearance of God, He Jesus, is by nature God, “being in the form of God”. The passage goes on to say, v8 “and being found in the fashion/appearance ( Gk schema) as a man” v8 (speaking of the virgin birth and His incarnation). Here the Greek word “schema” means “outward appearance only.” Jesus being God, clothed Himself in humanity and thus Christ became the God-Man. As the old Christmas carol puts it, “Veiled in flesh, the Godhead see”. The fact of the matter is, Christ was one hundred percent God and one hundred percent Man for our redemption.
It was no angel dying on the cross for you and me, it was the God-Man, Christ Jesus. God knows all about rejection, pain and suffering for He has been here and died an evil and cruel death for all of us. No one will be able to face God on the judgement day and say that God does not understand what it is like to suffer He was rejected, spat on, beaten and faced great pain in this world because on the cross He experienced it all. Unlike pagan gods who live without care and concern for humankind, we have a God who does care. God the Father cared so much that in the person of His Son, Jesus Christ, He was born, lived a sinless life and faced a cruel death. Yet praise God for Christ’s resurrection and ascension.
One of the attributes of God is His unchangeable nature; another is His self-existence or immortality, which includes never ceasing to exist. Jesus the divine God could never divorce His divine nature but he did put on human nature for us all and in that human nature, that schema, died the death of the cross. If you want to know what God is like, look at Jesus.
As we have noticed, Jesus has the same names as God. In the Old Testament we find that God (Elohim) is called Almighty. Each of the names of God relate to some aspect of who He is. As I pointed out above we will look at Revelation Ch 1 v8 in this section. The very first time that we come across the name, “Almighty” is in Gen 17. Here we are going back four thousand years ago. This is a feminine name as noted in the Hebrew wording. The word is, “Shaddai”, it is rooted in the Hebrew word “shad” meaning female breast. The name means “all sufficient”. The new-born gets all it needs from the mother breast and God would supply all the needs of Abram including a new born son Isaac who will be his heir.
The Greek New Testament translation of the word Shaddai or Almighty from the Hebrew text is “Pantokrator” and the Latin for this word is, “Omnipotens”. We get our word “Omnipotent” from the Latin.
It is interesting that in the very first chapter of Revelation we find the name “Almighty” is taken up by the Lord Jesus. This means that Jesus is the “Omnipotent One, the Almighty God. I know that members of the cults would pull their hair out by their roots hearing this stuff. My answer to them is that they have a problem, not I. I know that being in a cult, people are not allowed to have freedom of thought. All the books and literature that are given to a cult member must be believed without argument. Freedom of private research for a cult member is totally forbidden. For every subject they have a designated book and that book has all they need to know and study on that particular subject. Outside of this book or magazine is a no go area for a cult member. I find it strange that the cult H.Q. have thousands of research books, which they are endlessly quoting to support their point of view, but the rest of the members are forbidden to look into those prohibited books. The question I ask myself is, what are the higher ups afraid of? Those people who have left the cults have done so mostly because of outside research, perhaps that’s why there is a lock down! Please have a good look at the context of Revelation chapter one and notice who is speaking. My red letter Bible shows me, that it is Jesus who is speaking. Secondly, the text points out that it is Jesus who calls Himself “I am,” which is a divine Name. “Alpha and Omega”, which is also a divine name. “The First and the Last”, is another divine name. The speaker identifies Himself in v18 “I am He who lives and was dead, and behold, I am alive forever more…” That statement could only come from the Lord Jesus Christ. We conclude that the Bible here is clearly showing us that Jesus calls Himself, the Almighty.
Titus, Ch 1 & 2, The Saviour
Paul’s epistle to Titus goes on a theme about the Saviour found in Titus Chapters 2 & 3. The question that we ask ourselves is, who is the Saviour that Paul is writing about? and what is the nature of that Saviour? In these two chapters the word “Saviour” appears four times.
2 v10. “…the doctrine of God our Saviour”.
2 v13. “looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Saviour Jesus Christ, “
v14. “ who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works.”
3 v4 “…the love of God our Saviour towards man appeared” Ask yourself a question, was it God the Father who appeared to the world or was it God the Son? The answer is, it was God the Son.
3 v6. “ Whom He (Father) poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour.”
It is obvious that the “Saviour” in question here is none other than the Lord Jesus and His nature is divine (God), “our great God”.
JOHN CH 1 v1
The cult Bible (New World Translation) has translated John chapter one, verse one, so that it makes Jesus not THE God of the Bible but “a god”. They have done this in conformity to their own teaching that Jesus is not THE God of the Bible but that the true God is the Father. For the cult member, Jesus is part of Father God’s creation and Jesus is only “a god” with a small “g”. The reality is that 99% of Greek scholars disagree with their cult Bible translation.
The fact is as any student of New Testament Greek is aware, the original text of the New Testament was written with capital letters, there is no small “g” in the original text. Lower case did not come until about the ninth century. Also there were no indefinite articles (e.g. “a”, “an”) in the New Testament Koine Greek. John 1 v1c cannot be rendered as the NWT translates it, as this would contradict John’s theology in other verses of scripture. 1 v18; 8 v24, v58; 20 v28.
We also point out that none of the JWORG translators had any training to call themselves true authentic translators. The “Word” in the text is speaking of Jesus. This is how this verse is translated in other Bibles by eminent Greek scholars:
Orthodox Jewish Bible Yochanan 1:1 (OJB) Bereshis (in the Beginning) was the Dvar Hashem [YESHAYAH 55:11; BERESHIS 1:3], and the Dvar Hashem was agav (along with, etzel, Mishle 8:30;30:4) Hashem, and the Dvar Hashem was nothing less, by nature, than Elohim! [Psa 56:11(10); Yn 17:5; Rev. 19:13 i.e., the Ma’amar Memra]
Wycliffe John 1:1 (WYC) In the beginning was the word, and the word was at God, and God was the word. [In the beginning was the word, that is, God’s Son, and the word was at God, and God was the word.]
One thing is made very clear by all the translators of these many Bibles and that is: THE WORD (who is Jesus) WAS GOD.
All this begs a question, who were the translators of the JW Bible (NWT) who translated John 1 v 1 “..the word was a god” They were, Nathan H Knorr, Frederick Franz, George D Gangas, Albert D Schroeder and M Henshel.
Raymond V Franz left the organisation and wrote his earth shattering book, Crisis of Conscience. Not one of these men were trained to be a translator of the ancient scriptures. Frederick Franz did have some Greek training but was not fully trained person for such a work as translating from the ancient languages. The cult members go around our streets in total confidence that their Bible is the best translation from the original languages, 99% of the world’s Bible scholars totally disagree.
Is Jesus the beginning of Creation?
Often when speaking to JW’s on the street they point me to Rev 3 v14 which reads “And to the angel of the congregation in Laodicea write: These are the things that the Amen says, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation by God JW NWT. They say, look here, it says, “the beginning of the creation by God”. See, it speaks of Jesus being the first to be created by God.
So when I turn to the NIV translation it says “…the ruler of God’s creation”. It says nothing about Jesus being the first created by God but rather that Jesus rules over creation.
I turn again to another translation this time to the RSV which reads “…the ruler of God’s creation”. This backs the NIV version.
I turn to the KVJ and the NKJV and they read “…the beginning of the creation of God”. Now those two agree with the JW Bible so what is going on. What does it really say?
If Jesus had a beginning or if Jesus is any part of the creation of the Eternal then Jesus cannot be divine. The Greek word here for “beginning” is the word “arche” meaning origin, source, designer, Supervisor, first cause, ruler. This Greek word is not only applied to Jesus, it is also applied to the Father in Rev 21 v6 . Notice from verse five, it is God who is speaking and He says in verse six, “…I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end…”. It is the same in the JW NWT so, if it means that Jesus was the beginning of creation so it will mean that God the Father was the beginning of creation also!
Therefore Rev 3 v14 is not saying that Jesus had a beginning but that Jesus is the origin of creation and not that He was part of it but rather that He began it. He is the ruler over creation, a title shared by the Son and the Father. This is supported better by, the RSV and the NIV translations.
If I had a pound for every conversation with a Jehovah’s Witness on the text Col 1 v15, I could have a slap-up meal in a five star hotel! If you ask any Jehovah Witness, “who is Jesus?” they would say, He was the first to be created by God and through Him God created all other things. Their text to support this view is Col 1 v15. They interpret “firstborn” as first created. The word “firstborn” in the Greek text is “prototokos” which means supremacy or first in rank. If Paul wanted to say that Jesus was the first to be created, he would have used another Greek word, “protoktistos” which is “first-created”.
Firstborn is to be understood in the Hebraic sense, the heir, the preeminent. King David was the last son to be born in his house and yet David is called “firstborn.” Ps 89 v27. Ephraim is called the first-born, but in reality, his brother Manasseh was the first to be born. Gen 41 vs50-51 with Jeremiah 31 v9. Ishmael was much older than Isaac yet Isaac was the firstborn, the heir, the preeminent one, the second of the patriarchs, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
This text does not say that Jesus was the firstborn of Jehovah but, firstborn of all creation. Creation did not give birth to Jesus, rather Jesus created all things as pointed out in the next two verses.
JWOrg H.Q. has taught its people that the words “only begotten” found in the New Testament means “created”. This is very misleading. The Greek word is monogenes. This word comes from two words: monos “one” and “genes”, which means “kind” or “type”. When putting these two words together we have the meaning of “unique,” “only” or “one of its kind”. When the Bible refers to Jesus as the “only begotten” John 3 v16 it is not talking about Jesus having been created as the cults say. The equivalent in translation of the Hebrew adjective is “yachid” meaning “solitary.” Ps 68 v6. The emphasis is about “only” and “unique”.
Jesus is the “only” and the “unique,” “one of its kind,” Son of God. It has nothing to do with Jesus being created, that is false teaching.
Did Jesus say, “MY FATHER IS GREATER THAN I.”
Jesus in John 14 is talking to His disciples about His return to the Father and His throne. Jesus is speaking about His Father’s throne positionally that it is greater than His place on earth but that He will return to that greater place to be with the Father. Going back to Phil 2 and looking at verses 9-11 we see Jesus returns back into the heavenly glory and we ask the question, to where does He return? The answer is, “to the highest place”. What is the highest place in the heavens? It is the throne of God. In that higher place Jesus’ name is above all names and all bow to Him and confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. Only God’s name is above all names and Jesus has that name. Jesus is the King of kings and Lord of lords. Both the Father and the Son have this name as noted in the following verses: 1Tim 6 v15; Rev 1 v5; Rev 17 v1; Rev 19 vs11-16; Ps 136 v3 and Deut 10 v17. The Father is only greater when we understand the context concerning the meaning of “greater”.
Two JEHOVAH’S or YAHWEH’S
There is a very interesting passage in Zechariah chapter two. In v 9, we read these words “…Then you will know that the Lord of Hosts has sent me”. v10 “…I am coming and I will dwell in your midst, says the LORD”. Who is coming? The LORD is coming to dwell in the midst. Again the Lord repeats Himself in v 11 “…and I will dwell in your midst…”. Notice carefully the following words, “Then you will know that the LORD of Hosts has sent Me to you”. It is very clear that one LORD (Yahweh) is sending another LORD (Yahweh) to dwell in the midst of Israel.
Who sends who to Israel, the LORD does. Who is the LORD that is sent by the LORD? We believe this to be none other than the Lord Jesus and this reveals that Jesus also is Yahweh. Not convinced, read the next Ch 3 v2 “And the LORD said to Satan, The Lord rebuke you…”. One LORD (Yahweh) is rebuking in the name of another LORD (Yahweh).
The only conclusion that we can draw from these passages of scripture is that there are two LORDS (Yahwehs). Seeing that the JWOrg always translates the name “Lord” in the text into the 12 century invented divine name to that of “Jehovah” we conclude that there are two Jehovah’s in the Old Testament!
Jesus is called.
Lord. Phil 2 v11
Lord of Lords. 1Tim 6 v15
King of Israel. John 1 v49
The Saviour. 2Pet 1 v1
Master. Matt23 v10; Jude 4.
Son of God. John 1 v34; 20 v31
Son of Man. Matt 17 v9
Jesus. Matt 1 v21.
Christ. Matt 16 v16.
Messiah. John 1 v41; 4 vs25-26.
The Only Begotten Son. John 3 v16.
Redeemer. Gal 3 v13.
The Lord of Glory. 1Cor 2 v8.
The Image of God 2Cor 4 v4.
The Effulgence of His Glory. Heb 1 v3.
The Very Image of His Substance. Heb 1 v3.
Great High Priest. Heb 2 v10.
The Author and Perfector of our Faith. Eph 5 v23.
The Head of the Church. Eph 5 v23.
The Head of every man. 1Cor 11 v3.
The Power and the Wisdom of God. 1Cor 1 v24.
The Bread of Life. John 6 v35.
The Living Bread. John 6 v51.
The True Vine. John 15 v1.
The Door. John 10 v7.
The Holy and the Righteous One. Acts 3 v14.
The Prince of Life. Acts 3 v15.
God blessed forever. Rom 9 v5.
The Alpha and the Omega. Rev 1 v8.
The Beginning and the End. Rev 1 v8 NKJV.
The First and the Last. Rev 1 v17.
The Living One. Rev 1 v18.
The Lord God. Rev 1 v8 NIV.
My Lord and My God. John 20 v28.
The Almighty. Rev 1 v8.
The Heir of all things. Heb 1 v2.
The SON of GOD.
As the Son of God, Jesus is fully qualified to represent the Godhead to mankind. Jesus the man was tempted to deny and to throw doubt on this part of His nature, “If you are the Son of God,” said Satan. Matt 4 v3, v6. See also Matt 8 v29; John 11 v4; John 20 v31. This foolish temptation was overcome by Jesus even in His weak state.
‘Son’ and ‘Father’ in the New Testament must be looked upon with the understanding of the Semitic and oriental way of thinking, namely the idea of likeness or sameness of nature and of being. It is this sameness idea that caused the verdict of blasphemy in His trial before the High Priest. “Are you the Christ, the Son…” Mk 14v 61. The High Priest said to Him… “Tell us if you are the Christ, the Son of God.” ‘Yes, it is as you say’… “He has spoken blaspheme…He is worthy of death.” Matt 26 v63-66. For Jesus to claim to be the Son of God was a statement that He was of the likeness of God Himself.
It was this Semitic understanding that John the writer is at pains to communicate to a gentile mind in his gospel account of Jesus. At every twist and turn of his gospel, John is presenting Jesus in so many ways as to point out Christ’s divinity. This is the reason why Muslims reject John’s gospel, saying that it was a work of the churches understanding of Jesus, many years after the event and not a true record of the words of Jesus. This Islamic approach is very unfair and lacks scholarly understanding. John the Apostle was a holy man of integrity and he was an eyewitness to the sayings and events of the life of Jesus from the time of John the Baptist. To say it was a late production of the church recording with hindsight to deny that this gospel was the work of one man, which is something they cannot prove. The early church testifies that John’s Gospel was the work of the Apostle. The testimony of the divinity of Jesus is not only emphasised in John’s Gospel but it is also testified to in the other three gospels. We have today in Ryland’s College Manchester U.K. a fragment of John’s Gospel going back to 100 to 150 A.D. This fragment papyrus P52 was part of a Codex and is the earliest fragment we have of the New Testament. It’s existence testifies that there was a John’s Gospel writing prior to it as this P52 is a copy of a written work. This fact would takes us back to the life time of John himself. The evidence of the New Testament and the early church is that Jesus being the Son of God is a claim to His divinity. Muslims and Jehovah’s Witnesses in their rejection of Christ’s claim to be the Son of God and not just a son of God is a failure of scholarly understanding of the title. Looking at this title, Son of God with a 20-21st century mind and not a Semitic mind going back 2000 years will never grasp its true meaning and implication. Being the Son of God relates to an intimate and special relationship with the Eternal Father which is unique, this follows with Christ’s other claim to be one with the Father. Jn 5 vs17-18; 10 v30-33; 19 v7.
The SON of MAN.
Jesus sometimes called Himself the Son of God and at other times, Son of Man. As we have pointed out before, as the Son of God Jesus could rightly represent the Godhead to mankind. As the Son of Man, the Second Adam, He could truly represent man to God. He is also of that first Adam by birth through Mary and being so is the GOD-MAN. He was “born of the seed of David according to the flesh,” and He is also declared in Romans 1 v3-4 to be “the Son of God with power”.
To understand who the Messiah, Christ is, one must turn to Daniel 7 vs 13-14. The Son of Man: comes with clouds of heaven, is given authority, has glory, has sovereign power, all worship Him, has everlasting dominion and has a kingdom that will never be destroyed. This Son of Man is worshipped and this means that He is divine. I know that most translations say “serve him” but the NIV takes the Aramaic word “worship”. This follows through in the Orthodox Jewish Bible speaking of the Son of Man as the Moshiach being given “reverence as Deity”.
When Jews talk about the Messiah, the Christ in the New Testament, this is whom they were referring to. The Messiah, Christ, is the one who has the everlasting kingdom. How is it that both the Jehovah’s Witnesses and the Islamic world fail to understand what is meant by “Christ” or “Son of Man”. If Jesus the Son of Man is not God then why is it that “all peoples, nations and men of every language worship and serve Him”? v14. The Ten Commandments teaches us in Exo 20 v3-4 that we should worship none other than the Lord God. Yet in Dan 7 the Son of Man is worshipped and served by every man on earth.
All Jehovah’s Witnesses and the Islamic world should worship and serve the Lord Jesus. John the Baptist pointed out that Jesus was greater than he, Jn 1 v27. Jesus pointed out that John the Baptist was greater than a prophet Lk 7 v26. All this being so, Muhammad himself claimed to be a prophet, yet John is greater than a prophet meaning he is greater than Muhammad. John said that Jesus was far greater than he was. According to this pecking order, Christ is above John the Baptist and John the Baptist is greater than the prophets and those who themselves claim to be prophets of God. Of these three people and positions only Christ Jesus is found to be the one worshipped because He is the Son of Man as pointed out by Daniel in chapter seven verses thirteen and fourteen.
His Divinity, an invention of the Church?
There are those who believe that the divinity of Christ is an invention of the Churches Nicene Council in A.D. 325, back in the days of the Emperor Constantine. The cults say that the Church did not believe in the divinity of Christ prior to A.D.325. Nothing could be further from the truth than this. We would agree that the term Trinity was not coined until the late second century, the affirmation of trinitarian doctrine is overwhelmingly supported in ante-Nicene patristic literature.
Ignatius of Antioch (c. 50–117): “For our God, Jesus the Christ, was conceived by Mary according to God’s plan, both from the seed of David and of the Holy Spirit.”
Ignatius (again): “Consequently all magic and every kind of spell were dissolved, the ignorance so characteristic of wickedness vanished, and the ancient kingdom was abolished when God appeared in human form to bring the newness of eternal life.”
Ignatius (again): “For our God Jesus Christ is more visible now that he is in the Father.” Ignatius (again): “I glorify Jesus Christ, the God who made you so wise, for I observed that you are established in an unshakable faith, having been nailed, as it were, to the cross of the Lord Jesus Christ.” Ignatius (again): “Wait expectantly for the one who is above time: the Eternal, the Invisible, who for our sake became visible; the Intangible, the Unsuffering, who for our sake suffered, who for our sake endured in every way.”
Polycarp of Smyrna (69–155): “Now may the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the eternal high priest himself, the Son of God Jesus Christ, build you up in faith and truth . . ., and to us with you, and to all those under heaven who will yet believe in our Lord and God Jesus Christ and in his Father who raised him from the dead.”
Epistle of Barnabas (c. 70–130): “If the Lord submitted to suffer for our souls, even though he is Lord of the whole world, to whom God said at the foundation of the world, ‘Let us make humankind according to our image and likeness,’ how is it, then, that he submitted to suffer at the hands of humans?”
Justin Martyr (100–165): :And that Christ being Lord, and God the Son of God, and appearing formerly in power as Man, and Angel, and in the glory of
Pliny, Letters, 10.96–97. Letter to the Emperor Trajan.
Justin : “Permit me first to recount the prophecies, which I wish to do in order to prove that Christ is called both God and Lord of hosts.”36
Justin: “Therefore these words testify explicitly that He [Jesus] is witnessed to by Him [the Father] who established these things, as deserving to be worshipped, as God and as Christ.”
Justin: “The Father of the universe has a Son; who also, being the firstbegotten Word of God, is even God. And of old He appeared in the shape of fire and in the likeness of an angel to Moses and to the other prophets; but now in the times of your reign, having, as we before said, become Man by a virgin . .
Justin: “For if you had understood what has been written by the prophets, you would not have denied that He was God, Son of the only, unbegotten, unutterable God. “
Tatian (110–172): “We do not act as fools, O Greeks, nor utter idle tales when we announce that God was born in the form of man.”
Melito of Sardis (d. c. 180): “He that hung up the earth in space was Himself hanged up; He that fixed the heavens was fixed with nails; He that bore up the earth was born up on a tree; the Lord of all was subjected to ignominy in a naked body – God put to death! . . In order that He might not be seen, the luminaries turned away, and the day became darkened—because they slew God, who hung naked on the tree. . . . This is He who made the heaven and the earth, and in the beginning, together with the Father, fashioned man; who was announced by means of the law and the prophets; who put on a bodily form in the Virgin; who was hanged upon the tree; who was buried in the earth; who rose from the place of the dead, and ascended to the height of heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of the Father.”
Irenaeus of Lyons (120–202): “For I have shown from the Scriptures, that no one of the sons of Adam is as to everything, and absolutely, called God,
Justin Martyr, Dialogue with Trypho,
Justin Martyr, First Apology, Dialogue with Trypho; Tatian, Address to the Greeks supports the divinity of Christ.
The Master’s Seminary Journal named Lord. But that He is Himself in His own right, beyond all men who ever lived, God, and Lord, and King Eternal, and the Incarnate Word, proclaimed by all the prophets, the apostles, and by the Spirit Himself, may be seen by all who have attained to even a small portion of the truth. Now, the Scriptures would not have testified these things of Him, if, like others, He had been a mere man. . . . He is the holy Lord, the Wonderful, the Counselor, the Beautiful in appearance, and the Mighty God, coming on the clouds as the Judge of all men;—all these things did the Scriptures prophesy of Him.”
Irenaeus : “Christ Jesus [is] our Lord, and God, and Saviour, and King, according to the will of the invisible Father.”
Irenaeus : “Christ Himself, therefore, together with the Father, is the God of the living, who spoke to Moses, and who was also manifested to the fathers.”
Irenaeus : “He received testimony from all that He was very man, and that He was very God, from the Father, from the Spirit, from angels, from the creation itself, from men, from apostate spirits and demons
Clement of Alexandria (c. 150–215): “This Word, then, the Christ, the cause of both our being at first (for He was in God) and of our well-being, this very Word has now appeared as man, He alone being both, both God and man—the Author of all blessings to us; by whom we, being taught to live well, are sent on our way to life eternal. . . . The Word, who in the beginning bestowed on us life as Creator when He formed us, taught us to live well when He appeared as our Teacher; that as God He might afterwards conduct us to the life which never ends.”
Tertullian (c. 160–225): “For God alone is without sin; and the only man without sin is Christ, since Christ is also God.”
Tertullian (again): “Thus Christ is Spirit of Spirit, and God of God, as light of light is kindled. . . . That which has come forth out of God is at once God and the Son of God, and the two are one. In this way also, as He is Spirit of Spirit and God of God, He is made a second in manner of existence—in position, not in nature; and He did not withdraw from the original source, but went forth. This ray of God, then, as it was always foretold in ancient times, descending.
Hippolytus (170–235): “The Logos alone of this God is from God himself; wherefore also the Logos is God, being the substance of God.”
Caius (180–217) [in response to those who would question the deity of Christ]: “Perhaps what they allege might be credible, did not the Holy Scriptures, in the first place, contradict them. And then, besides, there are writings of certain brethren older than the times of Victor, which they wrote against the heathen in defence of the truth, and against the heresies of their time: I mean Justin and Miltiades, and Tatian and Clement, and many others, in all which divinity is ascribed to Christ. For who is ignorant of the books of Irenaeus and Melito, and the rest, which declare Christ to be God and man? All the psalms, too, and hymns of brethren, which have been written from the beginning by the faithful, celebrate Christ the Word of God, ascribing divinity to Him.”
Origen (c. 185–254): “Jesus Christ . . . in the last times, divesting Himself (of His glory), became a man, and was incarnate although God, and while made a man remained the God which He was.”
Novatian of Rome (210–280): “For Scripture as much announces Christ as also God, as it announces God Himself as man. It has as much described Jesus Christ to be man, as moreover it has also described Christ the Lord to be God. Because it does not set forth Him to be the Son of God only, but also the Son of man; nor does it only say, the Son of man, but it has also been accustomed to speak of Him as the Son of God. So that being of both, He is both, lest if He should be one only, He could not be the other. For as nature itself has prescribed that he must be believed to be a man who is of man, so the same nature prescribes also that He must be believed to be God who is of God. . . . Let them, therefore, who read that Jesus Christ the Son of man is man, read also that this same Jesus is called also God and the Son of God.”
Biblical Evidence for the Doctrine of the Holy Trinity.
One True God
Isaiah 46:9—“Remember the former things long past, For I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is no one like Me.”
Compare these scripturess:
Father Is God 2 Corinthians 1:3—“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort.”
Compare these scriptures:
The Son Is God Titus 2:13—“looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Saviour, Christ Jesus”
Compare these scriptures:
The Son Is not the Father John 1:1–2—“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God.”
Compare these scriptures:
The HOLY SPIRIT is a person and also is God
The Holy Spirit Is God Acts 5:3–4—“But Peter said, ‘Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and to keep back some of the price of the land? While it remained unsold, did it not remain your own? And after it was sold, was it not under your control? Why is it that you have conceived this deed in your heart? You have not lied to men but to God.’”
The Spirit possesses all of the attributes of deity Gen 1:2; 6:3; Job 33:4; Ps 139:7–8; John 3:3–8; 14:23; 1 Cor 2:10– 11; 6:16,19; 2 Cor 3:18; Heb 9:14; 10:15–16; 2 Thess 2:13; 1 Pet 1:10–11; 2 Pet 1:21.
The Holy Spirit Is not the Father nor the Son John 14:16–17—“I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever; that is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not see Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you and will be in you.”
The Bible often Refers to God in Ways that emphasize all Three Members of the Trinity. 2 Corinthians 13:14—“The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with you all.”
Compare these scriptures:
Matt 28:19; Rom 14:17–18; 15:13–17; 15:30; 1 Cor 6:11, 17–19; 12:4–6; 2 Cor 1:21–22; 3:4–6; Gal 2:21–3:2; Eph 2:18; 21–22; 3:11–17; 4:4–6; 5:18–20; Phil 2:1, 6; Col 1:6–8; 1 Thess 1:1– 5; 4:2, 8; 5:18–19; 2 Thess 2:13, 14; 3:5; Tit 3:4–6; Heb 9:14; 1 John 3:23–24; Jude 20–21.
The person and work of the Holy Spirit
Our God is not only Father and Son but is the Holy Spirit also, each have the same attributes. Often the Holy Spirit is called The Third Person of the Holy Trinity but this is not to indicate that He is less than the Son or that the Son is less than the Father for they are all co-equal and co-eternal. One Godhead in three Persons. The Father, The Son and The Holy Spirit.
The Jehovah’s Witnesses and the teaching of Islam fail to understand the Person of the Holy Spirit. Let us look at just a few things that we can point out about the Holy Spirit without going too deep.
WHO IS THE HOLY SPIRIT
It is in the Bible where we find the answer to this question, not to the Watchtower writers nor the Quran.
- He has intelligence just like any other person. 1Cor 2 vs10-11.
- He has a mind just like any other person. Rom 8 v27.
- He can be grieved like any other person. Eph 4 v30.
- He exorcises His will to do things just like any other person 1Cor 12 v11.
- He acts like a person in that He prays. Rom 8 v28.
- He performs miracles. Acts 8 v39.
- Jesus spoke of the Holy Spirit as, “He”. Jn 16 vs13-14.
- As with the Father and The Son, The Spirit also is a person as attested by scriptures. Matt 28 v19. WHO IS THE HOLY SPIRITIt is in the Bible where we find the answer to this question, not to the Watchtower writers nor the Quran.
- He has intelligence just like any other person. 1Cor 2 vs10-11.
- He has a mind just like any other person. Rom 8 v27.
- He can be grieved like any other person. Eph 4 v30.
- He exorcises His will to do things just like any other person 1Cor 12 v11.
- He acts like a person in that He prays. Rom 8 v28.
- He performs miracles. Acts 8 v39.
- Jesus spoke of the Holy Spirit as, “He”. Jn 16 vs13-14.
- As with the Father and The Son, The Spirit also is a person as attested by scriptures. Matt 28 v19.
THE HOLY SPIRIT IS GOD
His omniscient. 1Cor 2 vs11-12.
His omnipresence. Ps 139 v7.
He generates people by His power. Jn 3 vs5-6.
He created the miracle of the Virgin Birth of Christ. Lk 1 v35.
THE HOLY SPIRIT’S WORK IN THE WORLD
His work is three fold. John 16 v8
- To convict the world of Sin.
- To convict the world of Righteousness.
- To convict the world of Judgement.
THE HOLY SPIRIT’S WORK IN THE BELIEVER.
JESUS INTRODUCED THE HOLY SPIRIT TO HIS DISCIPLES Jn 14 vs16-17.
- He is the other counsellor, one in addition to Jesus.
- He is the gift of the Father.
- His coming is the result of Christ’s intercessions.
- He would never leave His people.
- He is the Spirit of Truth.
- He is not wanted by this world.
- He would live in our hearts.
THE HOLY SPIRIT WOULD WITNESS TO JESUS
- To tell us who Jesus is. Jn 1 v1 v14.
- To tell us why Jesus came. Jn3 v16.
- To tell us why Jesus rose from the dead. Rom 1 v4; 4 v25
- To tell us where Jesus is now. Acts 2 v33.
- To tell us why Jesus is there. Acts 2 v36; Heb 7 v25.
- To tell us about Jesus return. 2Tim 4 v1; Heb 9 vs27-28.
THERE ARE THREE EXHORTATIONS ABOUT THE HOLY SPIRIT
Do not grieve Him. Eph 4 v25; 5 v21.
THE FRUIT OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
Gal 5 vs22-23: Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faith.
THE GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
1Cor 12 vs7-11: The Word of Wisdom, The Word of Knowledge, The Gift of Faith, The Gift of Healings, The Working of Miracles, Prophecy, Discerning of spirits. Tongues, The Interpretation of Tongues, Exhortation.
THE GIFTS OF MINISTRY GIVEN BY THE SPIRIT
Eph 4 v11-13: Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, Pastors, Teachers.
THE BAPTISM OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
Is there such a work and doctrine found in the Bible? Yes, there is and there are seven verses to prove it.
The Witness of the Lord Jesus. Acts 1 v5.
The Witness of Peter. Acts 11 v16.
The Witness of God the Father. Jn 1 vs32-33.
I have found much help researching the early church and its doctrines and teachings from the internet; you may want to do more studies on the subject this way. I trust that this paper will be helpful in the work of evangelism as well as to aid churches teach on the subject of the Holy Trinity. As time goes on I will add to this paper. To all my Pastor friends in India, I trust this paper will help you to defend the gospel from cult members working in the villages.
Yours in Christ: Pastor Neil, Riverway International. West Kirby.
Books that will be of help on the above issues:
The Kingdom of the Cults, by Walter R Martin
Jesus of Nazareth, by Arthur Wallis.
The Divinity of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, by H.P.Liddon.
Studies in Theology, by Loraine Boettner.
Early Christian Doctrine, by J.N.D.Kelly.
Reasoning from the Scriptures, by Ron Rhodes.