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Section 2 .. Reasons To Believe/Jesus

 

003white  Index To Section 2.. Reasons To Believe       >        Index To Articles On Jesus         >       Deity Of Christ.. Part I

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The Deity of Jesus Christ. Was He Lord, Liar,
Or Lunatic? Part I

Carol Brooks
Edited by Vicki Narlee

Index To All Three Sections

001orangePART I ... John 1:1, Theos, The Strikingly Significant Parallels between Yahweh In The Old Testament, and Jesus In The New

  PART II ... Three Significant Titles Jesus Claimed For Himself, The Claims Jesus Made, Prerogatives Reserved Solely for God, Jesus' Appeal to Other Witnesses, Worship, Hypocrisy Unlimited? The Jehovahs Witnesses and Hebrews 1:6

PART III ... Rebuttal Arguments..Matthew 19:16-17,Philippians 2:5-8, Matthew 24:36 and Mark 13:32, Luke 2:52, Colossians 1:15-18, Jesus and The Father, Conclusion
 

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PART I ... ON THIS PAGE

Introduction

John 1:1
Logos

The Matter of The "a"

Theos
There are several passages, apart from John 1:1, in which Jesus is explicitly called "theos". In fact, the church's confession of Christ as Theos began in the first century with the apostles themselves.

The Strikingly Significant Parallels between Yahweh In The Old Testament, and Jesus In The New
Comparing statements made about God in the Old Testament, with statements made about Jesus in the New
Common Attributes
Titles Shared By God The Father and Jesus

The First and The Last, The Alpha and The Omega, and The Beginning and The End

Please note that, in this article, God Himself as the Supreme Deity, has usually been referred to as "God the Father", this done to differentiate between Him and Jesus, whom the Bible tells us is the Son of God.


Introduction
When it comes to Christianity, perhaps the most common disagreement is not whether a person called Jesus ever lived, but who exactly He was. Even people who are not Christians, and may be very committed to their own religion, but who have some knowledge of history, will usually agree that Jesus Christ of Nazareth was a unique personality. However, opinions as to who He was, are sharply divided. Many people see Jesus as simply a great moral teacher, perhaps even an extraordinary "way-shower". Others believe that He was a God in Heaven, but divested Himself of His 'Godhood' when He came to earth, becoming mere man.

Similarly, Adoptionism denies Christ's Deity and pre-existence, claiming that Jesus was a good man, who was born merely human, but became divine by being adopted as God's son, possibly at His baptism. This, in reward for His devotion to God, perfect character and great accomplishments. Subsequently, after His death, Jesus was raised from the dead and adopted into the Godhead.

Various groups regard Jesus as no more than a man who achieved enlightenment, while some New Agers do not have a problem with Jesus' Divinity because they believe that we are all, in some sense, divine. We all possess a spark of divinity which renders us children of God.

Note however, the Bible does not state that Jesus had some element of the divine in Him, but that He was a unique and perfect incarnation of the one true God. Colossians 2:9 does not say that some of the Godhead dwelt in Jesus, but (all) the "fullness" of the Godhead dwelt in Him. In other words, Christ possessed every element of Deity.

The answer to the question of who Jesus really was cannot be filed under 'differences of opinion', and left at that, since the practical implications of that, for every person on this planet, is enormous. If Jesus was not who he claimed to be, and was not who the Bible says He is, then we can at best safely ignore His teachings as the product of the devious mind of an out and out charlatan, or the ranting of one who was vastly deluded, or simply insane. However, if He really is God, then we need to sit up and pay very close attention to what He had to say. Jesus Himself once said...

    This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent." [John 17:3].

If our entire future hinges on our knowing God, and the Messiah whom He sent, then we have to know who this Messiah was.

Besides which, if Jesus is God, then it is insulting to Him to say that He is not, and never has been, part of the Godhead. On the other hand, if Jesus is not God, it is not a good idea to call Him God's equal, especially in view of the Biblical passages which make it very clear that God takes a very dim view of His glory being given to another.

However, the New Testament abounds with so much proof of the deity of Jesus Christ, that it is bewildering to hear it repudiated by so many who claim to believe in the Bible. What is truly amazing is that even some who claim to be Christians, will not admit to Christ's Deity. For instance the Jehovah's Witnesses themselves teach that "the Bible indicates that Michael is another name for Jesus Christ, before and after his life on earth". [1]. The Christadelphians deny the pre-existence of Christ.

Perhaps what skeptics are looking for is at least one passage in which the Bible unambiguously says "Jesus is God", or perhaps an unequivocal "I am God" statement from the lips of the Saviour Himself. They seem to reject any and all Scriptural passages that are not phrased exactly as they would like, forgetting, in the process, that we cannot interpret Jesus' words and actions, nor anything else in the Bible, according to our 21st century, western culture. We have to adjust our understanding of what has been said, or left unsaid, to the location, the culture, and the beliefs, of the time period we are concerned with.

Besides which, to expect Jesus to boldly and brazenly proclaim that He was God, is to altogether misunderstand His mission as the Messiah. He came not to proclaim himself as God, but to announce the coming of God's kingdom, to glorify the Father, and to lead people back to Him. Everything He said, and everything He did, were meant to reconcile men to God, not to focus attention on Himself.

Since no discussion about the Deity of Christ can be undertaken without referring to what is probably one of the most controversial passages in the entire New Testament, the first chapter of the Gospel of John is where we should begin...


John 1:1

Logos
A "word" is a unit of language by which we communicate our thoughts, our will, or even issue commands. The Gospel of John starts with the words...

     In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God,

The word translated "Word" in this passage is the Greek Logos, which John uses without explanation, simply because both his Jewish and Gentile readers would have been familiar with it.

While there seemed to be considerable latitude in how the word Logos was used by ancient philosophers of Greek thought, it is interesting that Philo (20 BC 50 AD), a Hellenized* Jew, used Logos to mean an intermediary divine being, or demiurge**. Therefore it is likely that, to the Gentile, the word Logos would have conjured up ideas of a bridge (or even mediator) between the transcendent God and the material world.

    *Hellenization is a term used to describe the spread of ancient Greek culture. **A demiurge was a powerful creative force or personality)

However, to the Jews, the word Logos was a familiar theological term. The Septuagint (or LXX), which was a 300-200 BC. translation of the Hebrew Bible into Greek, translated the Hebrew dbr into the Greek Logos, which the Jews would have associated with ...

    [Unfortunately the Septuagint was not the inspired translation many believe it is. It contains a large number of actual blunders, due in part perhaps to faulty archetype, but chiefly to the misreading or misunderstanding of the archetype by the translators. See More On The Septuagint]

God in Creation...
In the Old Testament the "Word of God" was His will, decree, command... an instrument of execution of God's will. As the first chapter of Genesis and Psalm 33 tell us, the universe was created by God's "Word".

    By the word (Heb. dbr) of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth. [Psalms 33:6]

And God in Revelation

    After these things the word (Heb. dbr) of the Lord came unto Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward. [Genesis 15:1]

    And, behold, the word (Heb. dbr) of the Lord came unto him, saying, This man shall not be thine heir; but he that shall come forth out of thine own bowels shall be thine heir. [Genesis 15:4]

    And the word (Heb. dbr) of the Lord came to me, saying, [Jeremiah 2:1]

    And he came thither unto a cave, and lodged there; and, behold, the word (Heb. dbr) of the Lord came to him, and he said unto him, What doest thou here, Elijah? [1 Kings 19:9]

However, John took this familiar concept a whole lot further, showing that...

The Logos is God in Redemption
The prologue to John's Gospel, reads

    "In the beginning was the Word (Gr. logos), and the Word (Gr. logos) was with God (Gr. theos) and the Word was God (Gr. theos).

That "the Word" is a reference to Jesus is easily seen from verse 14, which says The Word became flesh, and dwelt among us.

John was saying, in other words, that Jesus Christ not only gives God's Word to us, he is the Word. John's attributing personal qualities to the Logos and declaring that this Logos was God's Son, would have startled both Jew and Gentile. The thought that Jesus was the divine Logos incarnate, who represents God to us, and us to God, would have taken some getting used to.

    "God, having of old time spoken unto the fathers in the prophets by divers portions and in divers manners, hath at the end of these days spoken unto us in his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, through whom also he made the worlds; who being the effulgence of his glory, and the very image of his substance, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had made purification of sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high; [Hebrews 1:1-3]

[Note: The Son of God may be called "the Word," because he is the medium by which God both communicated with us, and put His will into effect. The term is also used to describe the Scriptures (Romans 9:6; Hebrew 4:12), Christ's teachings (Luke 5:1), and the Gospel message (Acts 4:31)]


The Matter of The "a"
However, the latter part of verse 1 of John's Gospel has been changed by the Jehovah's Witnesses Bible (The New World Translation), to ...the Word was a God. [Emphasis Added]

While dozens of scholars have made a considerable effort to explain the correct technical translation of this verse, the problem is that these discussions, centered around the intricacies of Greek grammar, are difficult for the majority of us to understand. (If you would like to explore this in detail, you may want to read John 1:1 Meaning and Translation, by James White at http://vintage.aomin.org/JOHN1_1.html and/or See Footnote I)

What we can understand is, that a large part of the debate is centered around the fact that Greek grammar has a definite article, but no indefinite article. That is, Greek has an equivalent of the English "the", but there is no word for the English "a" or "an". Therefore, the insertion of the article "a" into John 1:1, has been done in light of preconceived theology.

The Jehovah's Witnesses Official Web Site [1b] carries an article entitled Should You Believe in the Trinity? In the section on Trinity "Proof Texts", the author says that there are many places in the New Testament where the indefinite article has been inserted "because Greek grammar and the context require it", which is very true.

As an example the English word "a" has been twice inserted into the following verse, simply because the verse would not make sense in English without it. (Try reading any of the examples given without the indefinite article).

    Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father it is your will to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and standeth not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father thereof. [John 8:44]

Similarly

    But should we say, From men - they feared the people: for all verily held John to be a prophet. [Mark 11:32]

    Jesus answered them, Did not I choose you the twelve, and one of you is a devil? [John 6:70]

    Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the fold of the sheep, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. [John 10:1]

However, to say that John 1:1 requires the insertion of the indefinite article, because the testimony of the entire Bible is that Jesus is not Almighty God, is absolute hogwash. As shown in the rest of this article.. the Bible very clearly, and definitively, points to Jesus as being God.

But first, let us point out one fact... the Jews were fiercely monotheistic. Their knowledge of God was deeply ingrained... handed down from generation to generation. John's heritage, religious upbringing, and beliefs, would never have allowed John to believe in more than one "God", much less call any creature theos (God). Yet, in this verse, He did not use the adjective theios (godlike) to describe The Word (Jesus), but said the Word was theos (God), a word he consistently used for the Father over 80 times in His Gospel. (Interestingly, one of the only exceptions is when John reports that the disciple Thomas calls Jesus "My Lord and my God (theos) John 20:28)

While there is a storm of controversy about this one verse, with people going to great lengths to prove that John did not say that the Word (Jesus) was theos, John certainly was not the only person to do so.


 Theos
The Greek word Theos means deity, and, according to Strong's lexicon, referred to the Supreme Being, long before the New Testament was written. Thes is used almost 1200 times in the New Testament, most often for God the father, as the following few examples show.

    And he answered and said unto them, Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God (Gr. theos) because of your tradition? [Matthew 15:3]

    I am the God (Gr. theos) of Abraham, and the God (Gr. theos) of Isaac, and the God (Gr. theos) of Jacob. God (Gr. theos) is not the God (Gr. theos) of the dead, but of the living. [Matthew 22:32]

    for all have sinned, and fall short of the glory of God (Gr. theos) ; [Romans 3:23]

    For what saith the scripture? And Abraham believed God (Gr. theos) , and it was reckoned unto him for righteousness. [Romans 4:3]

    for by grace have ye been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God (Gr. theos) ; [Ephesians 2:8]

    who in time past were no people, but now are the people of God (Gr. theos) : who had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy. [1 Peter 2:10]

However, there are several passages, apart from John 1:1, in which Jesus is explicitly called "theos". This began with the words of the angel to Joseph (Mary's husband), continued with the disciple Thomas shortly after the resurrection, and was echoed by Luke, John, Paul, Peter, and the author of Hebrews... well into the first century.

The Angel: Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, And they shall call his name Immanuel; which is, being interpreted, God (Gr. theos) with us. [Matthew 1:23]

Thomas: There is a great deal of significance in the words of the disciple Thomas, who was not present when Jesus first appeared to the disciples after the resurrection. When Thomas heard that Jesus had shown Himself, he did not believe the account, but said he would have to see Jesus for himself in order to believe that He was alive. When Thomas actually saw the risen Lord, his words were

    Thomas answered and said unto him (Jesus), My Lord (Gr. kurios) and my God (Gr. theos). [John 20:28]

While some claim that Thomas was praising God, not Jesus, the text clearly says that Thomas said these words "unto Him"... to Jesus. And while it is possible that the disciple, in his excitement, did not give thought to what he was saying, the fact remains that Jesus did not rebuke him at all. In fact, Jesus accepted this address and went on to say "Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed" [Vs. 29]. This short, but extremely significant incident is compelling testimony to the Deity of Jesus, or, at least evidence that Jesus seemed to be under the impression that He was God.

Luke:

    Return to thy house, and declare how great things God (Gr. theos) hath done for thee. And he went his way, publishing throughout the whole city how great things Jesus had done for him. [Luke 8:39]

    Take heed unto yourselves, and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit hath made you bishops, to feed the church of the Lord (Gr. theos) which he purchased with his own blood. [Acts 20:28]

Hebrews:

    but of the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God (Gr. theos), is for ever and ever; And the sceptre of uprightness is the sceptre of thy kingdom. [Hebrews 1:8]

John:

    And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God (Gr. theos), and eternal life. [1 John 5:20]

Paul
The ninth chapter of Romans begins with the words... [Emphasis Added]

    [1] I say the truth in Christ, I lie not, my conscience bearing witness with me in the Holy Spirit, [2] that I have great sorrow and unceasing pain in my heart. [3] For I could wish that I myself were accursed, separated from Christ for the sake of my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh, [4] who are Israelites, to whom belongs the adoption as sons, and the glory and the covenants and the giving of the Law and the temple service and the promises, [5] whose are the fathers, and from whom is the Christ according to the flesh, who is over all, God (Gr. theos) blessed forever [Romans 9: 1-5]

In this passage, Paul expresses both great concern for the welfare of the Jews, and sorrow for their unbelief and obstinacy. As the apostle says, it is they who were regarded as a special people, adopted into the family of God, under the covenant made with Abraham, and the law given to Moses, therefore, they were the heirs to the promised land. From this illustrious ancestry (the fathers) came the long-awaited Messiah in human form, who is supreme over the universe.. "God blessed forever"

That there are two different interpretations of this passage is because of the punctuation. Scholars have long argued over whether a colon or comma is to be inserted after the word "flesh". However, as Robinson's Word Pictures says.. To put a full stop (period) or colon after flesh in verse 5 (in bold), thereby starting a new sentence for the  (blessing) is very "abrupt and awkward". The natural reading of this sentence is, that a clear statement about the deity of Christ immediately follows a statement about his humanity.

The next verse is especially significant. When Paul says Jesus took "the form of a servant", it is an obvious reference to Jesus Christ becoming a flesh and blood human being.  Therefore, it should be equally obvious that, when he says that Jesus existed "in the form of God", Paul was referring to Jesus being God. (We will return to this verse a little later to address the phrases "form of" and "emptied Himself").

    who, existing in the form (Gr. morphe) of God (Gr. theos), counted not the being on an equality with God (Gr. theos) a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, taking the form (Gr. morphe) of a servant, being made in the likeness of men; [Philippians 2:6-7]

    for in him (Jesus) dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead (Gr. theotes) bodily, [Colossians 2:9]

I do not see how anyone can mistake the next verse which unambiguously states that "God" was manifested in the flesh

    And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness; He (Gr. theos) who was manifested in the flesh, Justified in the spirit, Seen of angels, Preached among the nations, Believed on in the world, Received up in glory. [1 Timothy 3:16]

Paul and Peter
The following two verses, one by Paul, and the other by Peter, have the same exact wording.

    looking for the blessed hope and appearing of the glory of the great God (Gr. theos) and our Saviour Jesus Christ; [Titus 2:13]

    "Simon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, to them that have obtained a like precious faith with us in the righteousness of our God (Gr. theos) and Saviour Jesus Christ" [2 Peter 1:1]

There are differences of opinion regarding these two passages. Some believe that the Greek construction indicates a single person..."our God and Saviour Jesus Christ", while others feel the Greek indicates two separate persons. Yet others are of the opinion that it may be taken in either sense. However, as said by Doy Moyer, Professor of Biblical studies, philosophy, and apologetics, at Florida College

    These two passages may be considered together because of their identical phrase, "God and Savior" (theou kai soteros). In both passages, "Jesus Christ" is the object of the phrase. Some argue that "Savior" applies to Jesus, but "God" is a reference to the Father: "God (the Father) and Savior Jesus Christ. However, this is not supported by the Greek construction. This phrase is applied to one person Jesus Christ.

    First, this is the most natural reading of the text. Second, the two nouns stand under one article, which precedes "God." This indicates that they are to be construed together, not separately. Further, this phrase was a common formula, and it always denoted one deity, not two separate persons. When Paul and Peter both used the phrase, then, "their readers would always understand it as a reference to a single person, Jesus Christ. It would simply not occur to them that 'God' might mean the Father, with Jesus Christ as the 'Savior' (Harris 96-97). What this all means is that Peter and Paul understood that Jesus was both "God and Savior." [2]

Paul and Monotheism
Not only is Theos the Greek word for God, used for both God and Jesus, but Paul's words in the first book of Corinthians are very revealing, he said...

    Concerning therefore the eating of things sacrificed to idols, we know that no idol is anything in the world, and that there is no God but one. For though there be that are called gods, whether in heaven or on earth; as there are gods many, and lords many; yet to us there is one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we unto him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things, and we through him. [1 Corinthians 8:4-6]

It is interesting that, in this passage, Paul is contrasting polytheistic (many gods) idolatry with monotheistic (one God) Christianity. Yet, although he clearly says there is just one God (theos), he includes Jesus Christ as Lord (kurios). However, as shown above, there are several passages in the New Testament, including some by Paul, which refer to Jesus as Theos. In other words, Paul calls Jesus "God" in various epistles, yet includes Jesus in a statement that clearly says "there is no God but one".


Conclusion
As Brian J. Wright of bible.org points out, the boldness to call Jesus theos

    began in the first century. It was not a creation of Constantine in the fourth century. It was not a doctrinal innovation to combat Arianism in the third century. Nor was it a sub-apostolic distortion of the apostolic kerygma in the second century. Rather, the churchs confession of Christ as Theos began in the first century with the apostles themselves and/or their closest followers and therefore most likely from Jesus himself. [3]

Additionally there are innumerable Old Testament prophecies/statements concerning Yahweh or God the Father, which are quoted in the New Testament as referring to Jesus.


The Strikingly Significant Parallels between Yahweh In The Old Testament, and Jesus In The New

Names/Designations Of God In The Old Testament.
It is necessary to first examine some of the names of God the Father, used in the Old Testament.

YHVH and elhym: From the opening chapters of the Bible, the words YHVH and elhym refer to the supreme Deity, God the Father, creator of Heaven and Earth. Since Hebrew has no capital letters, the Hebrew name for God revealed to Moses on Mount Sinai (Exodus 3), consisted of the four consonants YHVH or YHWH (the tetragrammaton). According to Tracey Rich of jewfaq.org,

    YHVH is linguistically "related to the Hebrew root Hei-Yod-Hei (to be), and reflects the fact that God's existence is eternal". It is frequently shortened to Yah.

    elhym is used in scripture "when emphasizing God's might, His creative power, and His attributes of justice and rulership". [4]

These two words... YHVH (usually transliterated as yahweh or yehvh), and elhym are used about 5500 and 2200 times, respectively, in the Old Testament. (Please See Footnote II for more about the name yehvh or "Jehovah")

    And God (Heb. elhym) blessed the seventh day, and hallowed it; because that in it he rested from all his work which God (Heb. elhym) had created and made. These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the Lord (YHVH) God (Heb. elhym) made earth and heaven. [Genesis 2:3-4]

dn: The word dn properly means master, but has been applied to God Himself many times. For example

    And the angel answered and said unto me, These are the four winds of heaven, which go forth from standing before the Lord (Heb. dn) of all the earth. [Zechariah 6:5]

l: The word l, a  variation of elhym, is used over 200 times in the Old Testament. It can be used of any deity, but especially of the Almighty.

    And he blessed him, and said, Blessed be Abram of God (Heb. l) Most High, possessor of heaven and earth: [Genesis 14:19]

Bearing these in mind, we can compare statements made about God in the Old Testament, with statements made about Jesus in the New. All emphasis mine.


Isaiah's Vision

Let's begin by comparing who the prophet Isaiah said he saw, and who John said Isaiah saw. Isaiah said

    In the year that king Uzziah died I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up; and his train filled the temple. ...Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, Lord (YHVH) of hosts. [Isaiah 6:1, 5]

Although it is very clear that Isaiah saw God the Father, John says Isaiah saw the glory of the Lord Jesus Christ.

    But though he had done so many signs before them, yet they believed not on him: that the word of Isaiah the prophet might be fulfilled, which he spake, Lord, who hath believed our report? And to whom hath the arm of the Lord been revealed? For this cause they could not believe, for that Isaiah said again, He hath blinded their eyes, and he hardened their heart; Lest they should see with their eyes, and perceive with their heart, And should turn, And I should heal them. These things said Isaiah, because he saw his glory; and he spake of him. [John 12:37-41]

(For More On Isaiah's Reaction See The Holiness of God]


Three Prophecies

Whose Way Would Be Prepared by The Messenger?

The following two verses speak of the messenger who would prepare the way of the Lord.

    Behold, I send my messenger (Heb. mal'k), and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord (Heb. dn), whom ye seek, will suddenly come to his temple; and the messenger of the covenant, whom ye desire, behold, he cometh, saith the Lord (YHVH) of hosts. [Malachi 3:1]

    The voice of one that crieth, Prepare ye in the wilderness the way of the Lord (YHVH); make level in the desert a highway for our God (Gr. elohym). [Isaiah 40:3]

Both prophecies found fulfillment in the coming of John the Baptist, who heralded Jesus' public ministry. Matthew is very evidently quoting the Old Testament prophet Malachi.

    Yea and thou, child (John The Baptist), shalt be called the prophet of the Most High: For thou shalt go before the face of the Lord to make ready his ways; [Luke 1:76]

    This is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, Who shall prepare thy way before thee. [Matthew 11:10]

(Note: Malachi uses the word mal'k for messenger. Mal'k comes from an unused root meaning to despatch as a deputy; a messenger... specifically of God. We tend to largely associate messengers of God with angels however, a mal'k can also be prophet, priest, or teacher. In this case the messenger was John The Baptist).


Whose Side Would be Pierced?

    And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem. And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplication; and they shall look unto me (th) whom they have pierced; and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his first-born. [Zechariah 12:9-10]

In the quote above, note the pronoun th which means self. Youngs Literal Translation has capitalized the word "Me", since it is an obvious reference to God the Father. However, it was Jesus whose side was wounded by the Roman soldier's lance..

    But one of the soldiers pierced His side with a lance, and at once blood and water came out. ... For these things happened that the Scripture might be fulfilled, "Not a bone of Him shall be broken." And again, a different Scripture says, "They shall look at Him whom they have pierced." [John 19:34, 36-37]

    and from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loveth us, and loosed us from our sins by his blood; and he made us to be a kingdom, to be priests unto his God and Father; to him be the glory and the dominion for ever and ever. Amen. Behold, he cometh with the clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they that pierced him; and all the tribes of the earth shall mourn over him. Even so, Amen. [Revelation 1:5-7]

Who Was To Be a Stone Of Stumbling And A Rock Of Offense?.

Isaiah 8:13-14 refers to YHVH as the one who would become a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense. The New Testament applies these very same terms to Jesus.

    Lord of hosts, him shall ye sanctify; and let him be your fear, and let him be your dread. And he shall be for a sanctuary; but for a stone of stumbling and for a rock of offence to both the houses of Israel, for a gin and for a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem. [Isaiah 8:13-14]

    ye also, as living stones, are built up a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. Because it is contained in scripture, Behold, I lay in Zion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: And he that believeth on him shall not be put to shame. For you therefore that believe is the preciousness: but for such as disbelieve, The stone which the builders rejected, The same was made the head of the corner; and, A stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence; for they stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed. [1 Peter 2: 5-8]


The Creator and Sustainer

... Laid The Foundation Of The Earth

Psalm 102 is a prayer by someone very distressed who is 'pouring out his complaint' to YHVH. See verse 1.

    Of old didst thou lay the foundation of the earth; And the heavens are the work of thy hands. They shall perish, but thou shalt endure; Yea, all of them shall wax old like a garment; As a vesture shalt thou change them, and they shall be changed: But thou art the same, And thy years shall have no end. [Psalms 102:25-27]

In Hebrews 1:10-12, a section of this very prayer is addressed to the Son as the Creator who laid the foundation of the earth. (Hebrews 1:2 says God made the worlds through His Son).

    And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning didst lay the foundation of the earth, And the heavens are the works of thy hands: They shall perish; but thou continuest: And they all shall wax old as doth a garment; And as a mantle shalt thou roll them up, As a garment, and they shall be changed: But thou art the same, And thy years shall not fail. [Hebrews 1:10-12]

How could part of a prayer directed to God the Father, be applied to someone who is not God?

...Created Heaven And Earth And Upholds The Universe

    Thou art Lord (YHVH), even thou alone; thou hast made heaven, the heaven of heavens, with all their host, the earth and all things that are thereon, the seas and all that is in them, and thou preservest them all; and the host of heaven worshippeth thee. [Nehemiah 9:6]

However, the Scriptures also teach that Jesus is the upholder and sustainer of all things.

    and he is before all things, and in him all things consist. [Colossians 1:17]

    God, having of old time spoken unto the fathers in the prophets by divers portions and in divers manners, hath at the end of these days spoken unto us in his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, through whom also he made the worlds; who being the effulgence of his glory, and the very image of his substance, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had made purification of sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high; [Hebrews 1:1-3]

...And Can Calm The Seas

    O Lord (YHVH) God (elhym) of hosts, Who is a mighty one, like unto thee, O Lord (yhh)? And thy faithfulness is round about thee. Thou rulest the pride of the sea: When the waves thereof arise, thou stillest them. [Psalms 89:8-9]

    And they feared exceedingly, and said one to another, Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him? [Mark 4:41]

Furthermore, aren't we supposed to have just...


One Saviour and Redeemer

One Saviour

The Bible declares in no uncertain terms that God the Father alone is saviour, and only He could fill this role.

    Salvation belongeth unto the Lord (YHVH) Thy blessing be upon thy people. Selah. [Psalms 3:8]

    Declare ye, and bring it forth; yea, let them take counsel together: who hath showed this from ancient time? who hath declared it of old? Is it not I the Lord (YHVH) and there is no God (elhym) besides me, a just God (el) and a Saviour; there is none besides me... Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth; for I am God (l), and there is none else. [Isaiah 45:21-22]

    I, even I, am the Lord (YHVH); and besides me there is no saviour. [Isaiah 43:11]

    Yet I am the Lord (YHVH) thy God from the land of Egypt; and thou shalt know no god but me, and besides me there is no saviour. [Hosea 13:4]

So how could Jesus be called the saviour of the world, unless He was God?

    and they said to the woman, Now we believe, not because of thy speaking: for we have heard for ourselves, and know that this is indeed the Saviour of the world. [John 4:42]

    And in none other is there salvation: for neither is there any other name under heaven, that is given among men, wherein we must be saved. [Acts 4:12]

Even more tellingly, Jesus claimed to be the only way to salvation. He said,

    I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but through Me (John 14:6).

Jesus did not come to earth to be just any man. He came to be the savior of the world, a role that God Himself tells us that only He could fill. 

Those Who Call On The Name of The "Lord" Shall Be Saved...

    And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord (YHVH) shall be delivered; for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be those that escape, as Jehovah hath said, and among the remnant those whom Jehovah doth call. [Joel 2:32]

    because if thou shalt confess with thy mouth Jesus as Lord, and shalt believe in thy heart that God raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved... for, whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.  [Romans 10:9,13]

It is important to note that Paul is strictly speaking about Jesus in Romans 10. He expresses his earnest desire for the salvation of the Jews (Vs.1), who were seeking salvation by works and not by faith in Christ (Vs. 2-4). He goes on to tell them that if they confess Jesus as Lord with their mouths, and believe in their hearts that God raised Him from the dead, they would be saved (Vs. 9), with no distinction between Jew and Greek (Vs. 12). So the words "Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved", refers to Jesus, and none other.

How One Responds To Jesus, Equates To How One Responds To The Father

    Who is the liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, even he that denieth the Father and the Son. Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father: he that confesseth the Son hath the Father also. [1 John 2:22-23]

    They said therefore unto him, Where is thy Father? Jesus answered, Ye know neither me, nor my Father: if ye knew me, ye would know my Father also. [John 8:19]

    If ye had known me, ye would have known my Father also: from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him. [John 14:7]

    He that hateth me hateth my Father also. If I had not done among them the works which none other did, they had not had sin: but now have they both seen and hated both me and my Father. [John 15: 23-24]


The "Spirit of Christ" and the "mind of Christ", is identified with the "Spirit of God" and the "mind of the Lord"

    And because ye are sons, God sent forth the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, Abba, Father. [Galatians 4:6]

    But ye are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you. But if any man hath not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. And if Christ is in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the spirit is life because of righteousness. But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwelleth in you, he that raised up Christ Jesus from the dead shall give life also to your mortal bodies through his Spirit that dwelleth in you. [Romans 8:9-11]

    For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he should instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ. [1 Corinthians 2:16]


We Are Instructed To "Glory In The Lord"

    In the Lord shall all the seed of Israel be justified, and shall glory. [Isaiah 45:25]

    Thus saith Jehovah, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches; but let him that glorieth glory in this, that he hath understanding, and knoweth me, that I am Jehovah who exerciseth loving kindness, justice, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith Jehovah. [Jeremiah 9:23-24]

But this next verse says we should glory in Jesus Christ.

    But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who was made unto us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption: that, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord (Gr. kurios). [1 Corinthians 1:30-31]


Whose Gospel?
If Jesus were a created being, I do not see how the Gospel could be referred to as His Gospel. The Gospel is God's "good news" of salvation, a plan which He both decided on, and carried out. To call it the Gospel of a created being seems to be a serious case of giving credit where it is not due... unless of course Christ is God. In which case, there is no difference between the terms the 'Gospel of God' and the 'Gospel of Christ'.

    Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God, [Romans 1:1]

    that I should be a minister of Christ Jesus unto the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be made acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Spirit. [Romans 15:16]

    in the power of signs and wonders, in the power of the Holy Spirit; so that from Jerusalem, and round about even unto Illyricum, I have fully preached the gospel of Christ; [Romans 15:19]

    If others partake of this right over you, do not we yet more? Nevertheless we did not use this right; but we bear all things, that we may cause no hindrance to the gospel of Christ. [1 Corinthians 9:12]

    seeing that through the proving of you by this ministration they glorify God for the obedience of your confession unto the gospel of Christ, and for the liberality of your contribution unto them and unto all; [2 Corinthians 9:13]

    which is not another gospel only there are some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. [Galatians 1:7]

    even so, being affectionately desirous of you, we were well pleased to impart unto you, not the gospel of God (theos) only, but also our own souls, because ye were become very dear to us. For ye remember, brethren, our labor and travail: working night and day, that we might not burden any of you, we preached unto you the gospel of God (theos). [1 Thessalonians 2:8-9]

    and sent Timothy, our brother and God's minister in the gospel of Christ, to establish you, and to comfort you concerning your faith; [1 Thessalonians 3:2]

    rendering vengeance to them that know not God, and to them that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus: [2 Thessalonians 1:8]

    For the time is come for judgment to begin at the house of God: and if it begin first at us, what shall be the end of them that obey not the gospel of God? [1 Peter 4:17]

Additionally...

God...
Redeems From Iniquities

    Let Israel hope in the Lord (YHVH): for with the Lord (YHVH) there is mercy, and with him is plenteous redemption. And he shall redeem Israel from all his iniquities. [Psalms 130:7-8]

    Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. [Titus 2:13-14]

Lives in us

    And what agreement hath a temple of God with idols? for we are a temple of the living God; even as God said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. [2 Corinthians 6:16]

Paul's words above are not a direct quote of one Old Testament verse, but the substance of three different verses.

    And I will dwell among the children of Israel, and will be their God. [Exodus 29:45]

    And I will walk among you, and will be your God, and ye shall be my people. [Leviticus 26:12]

    My tabernacle also shall be with them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. [Ezekiel 37:27]

Yet, Paul also says Christ is the One who lives in him.

    I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I that live, but Christ living in me: and that life which I now live in the flesh I live in faith, the faith which is in the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself up for me. [Galatians 2:20]

Has Power To Forgive

    And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord YHVH): for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the Lord (YHVH): for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more. [Jeremiah 31:34]

    And when he saw their faith, he said unto him, Man, thy sins are forgiven thee. [Luke 5:20]

Gives Eternal Life

    And the witness is this, that God (theos) gave unto us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. [1 John 5:11]

    and I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, and no one shall snatch them out of my hand. [John 10:28]

Leads Away The Captives

    Thou hast ascended on high, thou hast led away captives; Thou hast received gifts among men, Yea, among the rebellious also, that the Lord (YHVH) God might dwell with them. Blessed be the Lord, who daily beareth our burden, Even the God who is our salvation. [Psalms 68:18-19]

    But unto each one of us was the grace given according to the measure of the gift of Christ. Wherefore he saith, When he ascended on high, he led captivity captive, And gave gifts unto men. [Ephesians 4:7-8]

Jesus and The Father.. Sources Of Grace And Peace
Many of the epistles contained benedictions, or invocation of divine blessing, some of which were given on behalf of the Father. For example...

    To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ that are at Colossae: Grace to you and peace from God our Father. [Colossians 1:2]

However, in most of them, Jesus is mentioned on an equal footing as the Father as the source of both grace and peace

    to all that are in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. [Romans 1:7. Also see 2 Corinthians 1:2]

    The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit, be with you all. [2 Corinthians 13:14]

    Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. [Ephesians 1:2. Also See Philippians 1:2 and Galatians 1:3]

    Peace be to the brethren, and love with faith, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. [Ephesians 6:23. Also See Titus 1:4 and Philemon 1:3]

And some verses list Jesus alone

    The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen. [Romans 16:24. Also See 1 Corinthians 16:23 ]

    The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit, brethren. Amen. [Galatians 6:18 and Philippians 4:23 ]

       The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. [1 Thessalonians 5:28]


In The End of Days, God...
Is Coming With All His Saints

    And ye shall flee by the valley of my mountains; for the valley of the mountains shall reach unto Azel; yea, ye shall flee, like as ye fled from before the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah; and the Lord (YHVH) my God (elhym) shall come, and all the holy ones with thee. [Zechariah 14:5]

    to the end he may establish your hearts unblameable in holiness before our God and Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all his saints. [1 Thessalonians 3:13]

...Will Take Vengeance on His Enemies
There is no shortage of verses in both the Old and New Testaments that speak of God the Father taking vengeance on His enemies.

    Vengeance is mine, and recompense, At the time when their foot shall slide: For the day of their calamity is at hand, And the things that are to come upon them shall make haste. [Deuteronomy 32:35]

    If I whet my glittering sword, And my hand take hold on judgment; I will render vengeance to mine adversaries, And will recompense them that hate me. [Deuteronomy 32:41]

    And I will execute vengeance in anger and wrath upon the nations which hearkened not. [Micah 5:15]

    Avenge not yourselves, beloved, but give place unto the wrath of God: for it is written, Vengeance belongeth unto me; I will recompense, saith the Lord. [Romans 12:19]

    For we know him that said, Vengeance belongeth unto me, I will recompense. And again, The Lord shall judge his people. It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. [Hebrews 10:30-31]

But it is the Lord Jesus Christ that actually renders vengeance.

    and to you that are afflicted rest with us, at the revelation of the Lord Jesus from heaven with the angels of his power in flaming fire, rendering vengeance to them that know not God, and to them that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus: [2 Thessalonians 1:7-8]

God's Garments Are Stained With Blood

    Wherefore art thou red in thine apparel, and thy garments like him that treadeth in the winevat? I have trodden the winepress alone; and of the peoples there was no man with me: yea, I trod them in mine anger, and trampled them in my wrath; and their lifeblood is sprinkled upon my garments, and I have stained all my raiment. [Isaiah 63:2-3]

    And he is arrayed in a garment sprinkled with blood: and his name is called The Word of God. And the armies which are in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and pure. And out of his mouth proceedeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness of the wrath of God, the Almighty. And he hath on his garment and on his thigh a name written, KINGS OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS. [Revelation 19:13-16]

...Will Judge the World

    Let the field exult, and all that is therein; Then shall all the trees of the wood sing for joy before the Lord (YHVH); for he cometh, For he cometh to judge the earth: He will judge the world with righteousness, And the peoples with his truth. [Psalms 96: 12-13]

    For neither doth the Father judge any man, but he hath given all judgment unto the Son; [John 5:22]

... Will Give To Man According To His Ways

    I the Lord search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings. Jeremiah 17:10]

    And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he that searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto each one of you according to your works. [Revelation 2:23]

...Will Establish His Throne For all Eternity

    [8] but of the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God (Gr. theos), is for ever and ever; And the sceptre of uprightness is the sceptre of thy kingdom. [9] Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; Therefore God, thy God, hath anointed thee With the oil of gladness above thy fellows. [10] And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning didst lay the foundation of the earth, And the heavens are the works of thy hands: [Hebrews 1:8-10]

From verses 1 and 2 of The first chapter of the book of Hebrews, we know that it is God the Father speaking. This chapter shows the superiority of the Son over the angels. Verse 5 says that none of the angels were ever called "Son" [v.5], while verse six instructs the angels to worship Him.

Verse 8 and 9 are an address to the Son by the Father.

    but of the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God (theos), is for ever and ever; And the sceptre of uprightness is the sceptre of thy kingdom. Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; Therefore God (theos), thy God (theos), hath anointed thee With the oil of gladness above thy fellows. [Hebrews 1:8-9]

However verse 10 is connected to the preceding two by the use of the word "and", which ensures that we understand that all three verses are connected.

    And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning didst lay the foundation of the earth, And the heavens are the works of thy hands [Hebrews 1:10]

In other words the "Lord" (kurios) who laid the foundation of the earth, is also the Son, referred to as God (theos)

Additionally, verses eight and nine, are quotes from Psalm 45:6-7, which says

    Thy throne, O God (Heb. elhym), is for ever and ever: A sceptre of equity is the sceptre of thy kingdom. Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated wickedness: Therefore God, thy God, hath anointed thee With the oil of gladness above thy fellows. [Psalms 45:6-7]

These verses are addressed to elhym, the Eternal God himself. If the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews did not believe Jesus Christ to be the true and eternal God, he has, as commentator Adam Clarke said, "utterly misapplied this Scripture".

Oh yes, and please notice that the book of Revelation twice speaks of ...

One Throne For Both God And Jesus.

    And he showed me a river of water of life, bright as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb, [Revelation 22:1]

    And there shall be no curse any more: and the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be therein: and his servants shall serve him;  [Revelation 22:3]


Every Knee Shall Bow...

(Isaiah 45:22-23, Philippians 2:9-11 and Romans 14:10)

     Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth; for I am God (Heb. l), and there is none else. By myself have I sworn, the word is gone forth from my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, that unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear. [Isaiah 45: 22-23]

Paul was obviously very familiar with this verse from Isaiah, since he referred to it in the book of Romans, when he says "it is written"

    For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, to me every knee shall bow, And every tongue shall confess to God. [Romans 14:11]

Although, just two verses earlier in the book of Romans, Paul spoke about Christ being Lord of both the dead and the living (Vs.9), some are not sure whether the apostle is referring to Jesus or God the Father in verse 11. However there is absolutely no doubt that, in the book of Philippians, Paul very clearly stated that every knee shall bow at the name of Jesus

    Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. [Philippians 2:9-11]

Certainly strong proof that the apostle regarded the Lord Jesus as divine.
 

Common Attributes
In general, every attribute of the Father is ascribed to the Son. (The list below is certainly not exhaustive).

Omnipresence (Present everywhere simultaneously)

    For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them. [Matthew 18:20]

    teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I commanded you: and lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. [Matthew 28:20]

Omniscience (Having complete or unlimited knowledge, awareness, or understanding; perceiving all things. From the Latin word omnis, meaning all, and scientia, meaning knowledge)

    Jesus saw Nathanael coming to him, and saith of him, Behold, an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile! Nathanael saith unto him, Whence knowest thou me? Jesus answered and said unto him, Before Philip called thee, when thou wast under the fig tree, I saw thee. Nathanael answered him, Rabbi, thou art the Son of God; thou art King of Israel. [John 1:47-49]

    But Jesus did not trust himself unto them, for that he knew all men, and because he needed not that any one should bear witness concerning man; for he himself knew what was in man. [John 2:24-25]

    He saith unto him the third time, Simon, son of John, lovest thou me? Peter was grieved because he said unto him the third time, Lovest thou me? And he said unto him, Lord, thou knowest all things; thou knowest that I love thee. Jesus saith unto him, Feed my sheep. [John 21:17]

    And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he that searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto each one of you according to your works. [Revelation 2:23]

Immutability... (God Does Not Change)

    They shall perish, but thou shalt endure; Yea, all of them shall wax old like a garment; As a vesture shalt thou change them, and they shall be changed: But thou art the same, And thy years shall have no end. [Psalms 102:26-27]

    For I, the Lord, change not; therefore ye, O sons of Jacob, are not consumed. [Malachi 3:6]

    Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom can be no variation, neither shadow that is cast by turning. [James 1:17]

    Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and to-day, yea and for ever. [Hebrews 13:8]

Omnipotence (Unlimited Power)

    He that descended is the same also that ascended far above all the heavens, that he might fill all things. [Ephesians 4:10]

    And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning didst lay the foundation of the earth, And the heavens are the works of thy hands: They shall perish; but thou continuest: And they all shall wax old as doth a garment; And as a mantle shalt thou roll them up, As a garment, and they shall be changed: But thou art the same, And thy years shall not fail. [Hebrews 1:10-12]

    Seeing, then, the children have partaken of flesh and blood, he himself also in like manner did take part of the same, that through death he might destroy him having the power of death--that is, the devil [Hebrews 2:14]

    As Paul said "for in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily" [Colossians 2:9]


Titles Shared By God The Father and Jesus
The "Holy One"

    For I am the Lord (YHVH) thy God, the Holy One of Israel, thy Saviour; I have given Egypt as thy ransom, Ethiopia and Seba in thy stead. [Isaiah 43:3]

    But ye denied the Holy and Righteous One, and asked for a murderer to be granted unto you, [Acts 3:14]

    For David saith concerning him, I beheld the Lord always before my face; For he is on my right hand, that I should not be moved: Therefore my heart was glad, and my tongue rejoiced; Moreover my flesh also shall dwell in hope: Because thou wilt not leave my soul unto Hades, Neither wilt thou give thy Holy One to see corruption. [Acts 2:25-27 quoting Psalm 16:10]

Mighty God
Isaiah 9:6 refers to the Messiah as Mighty God (El Gibbor).

    For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, Mighty God (El Gibbor), Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. [Isaiah 9:6]

However, just one chapter later, Isaiah himself clearly connected El Gibbor or "Mighty God" with YHVH or God the Father, as did Jeremiah

    A remnant shall return, even the remnant of Jacob, unto the mighty (gibbor) God (l). [Isaiah 10:21]

    who showest lovingkindness unto thousands, and recompensest the iniquity of the fathers into the bosom of their children after them; the great, the mighty (gibbor) God (l), Lord (YHVH) of hosts is his name; [Jeremiah 32:18]

The Jehovah's witnesses argue that "the similarity of wording" does not prove that Jesus is God. However, using the phrase "similarity of wording" coveys an erroneous impression. The Hebrew words used are not 'similar', but EXACTLY the same... The title given both Jesus and YHVH is El Gibbor, translated "Mighty God".

They also say that there is a difference between being "mighty", and being "almighty" with no superior", with which I totally agree. There is certainly a difference between "mighty" and "almighty". All but four or five of the 159 uses of the Hebrew word gibbor in the Old Testament are applied to men and even, in one case that I am aware of, to an animal. For example Joshua's army were called mighty (gibbor) men of valour (Joshua 6:2), as was Gideon (Judges 6:12), some of David's men [2 Samuel 23:16, 1 Chronicles 28:1], Nimrod [1 Chronicles 1:10], the Assyrian army [2 Chronicles 32:21], and a lion [Proverbs 30:30].

When the Jehovah's Witnesses say the Hebrew El Shadday (Almighty God) is only applicable to the Father (See Genesis 17:1 as an example of the 49 uses in the OT), but El Gibbor (Mighty God) is not limited to YHVH alone, they are completely wrong. The word "gibbor" has never been used in connection with any other "gods", but applied to YHVH five times. In Isaiah 10:21 and Jeremiah 32:18 above, and...

    For the Lord (yehvh) your God (elhym), he is God (elhym) of gods (elhym), and Lord (dn) of lords (dn), the great God (l), the mighty (gibbor), and the terrible (yr), who regardeth not persons, nor taketh reward. [Deuteronomy 10:17]

    Now therefore, our God (elhym), the great, the mighty (gibbor), and the terrible (yr) God (l), who keepest covenant and lovingkindness, let not all the travail seem little before thee, that hath come upon us, on our kings, on our princes, and on our priests, and on our prophets, and on our fathers, and on all thy people, since the time of the kings of Assyria unto this day. [Nehemiah 9:32]

    The Lord (YHVH) thy God (elhym) is in the midst of thee, a mighty (gibbor) one who will save; he will rejoice over thee with joy; he will rest in his love; he will joy over thee with singing. [Zephaniah 3:17]

    The  fact that the words "Mighty" and "God", are only tied together some six times in the Old Testament... five times in connection with YHVH, once in connection with Jesus, but never in connection with any other "gods", is proof that Jesus was not a lesser Being, but YHVH Himself.  El Gibbor (Mighty God) is limited to YHVH alone

Lord of Lords
In The Old Testament The Father is called "Lord of lords"

    For the Lord your God, he is God of gods, and Lord of lords, the great God, the mighty, and the terrible, who regardeth not persons, nor taketh reward. [Deuteronomy 10:17]

    Oh give thanks unto the Lord of lords; For his loving kindness endureth for ever: [Psalms 136:3]

In The New Testament, Jesus is called "Lord of lords"

    that thou keep the commandment, without spot, without reproach, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ: which in its own times he shall show, who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords; [1 Timothy 6:14-15]

    These shall war against the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them, for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings; and they also shall overcome that are with him, called and chosen and faithful. [Revelation 17:14]

    And he hath on his garment and on his thigh a name written, KINGS OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS. [Revelation 19:16]

The "Lord of Glory"
This term is applied to God the Father in both Old and New Testaments.

    Who is this King of glory? The Lord (YHVH) of hosts, he is the King of glory. Selah. [Psalms 24:10]

    And he said, Brethren and fathers, hearken: The God (theos) of glory appeared unto our father Abraham, when he was in Mesopotamia, before he dwelt in Haran, [Acts 7:2]

    that the God (Gr. theos) of our Lord (Gr. kurios) Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him; [Ephesians 1:17]

However, it is also applied to Jesus Christ.

    which none of the rulers of this world hath known: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord (kurios) of glory: [1 Corinthians 2:8]

    My brethren, hold not the faith of our Lord (Gr. kurios) Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with respect of persons. [James 2:1]

      Note that although some of these verses refer to God the Father as theos, and Jesus as kurios, the term theos has been applied to Jesus many times in the New Testament.

However, perhaps the most compelling of the evidence is the fact that both God the Father and Jesus are called


The First and The Last, The Alpha and The Omega, and The Beginning and The End

God The Father as The First and The Last
In the book of Isaiah, God the Father says He is The First and The Last [All Emphasis Added]

    Thus saith the Lord (YHVH), the King of Israel, and his Redeemer, the Lord (YHVH) of hosts: I am the first, and I am the last; and besides me there is no God (elhym). [Isaiah 44:6]

    Hearken unto me, O Jacob, and Israel my called: I am he; I am the first, I also am the last. [Isaiah 48:12]

The language here is equivalent to saying that God is both the Creator and the Completer. Although He began all things, and will end all things, He Himself has always existed, and will always exist... He is eternal. The Jews were well known for their reverence of God, to the point that they were extremely careful in their writings to use certain characteristics and titles of God exclusively for God, to unambiguously differentiate Him from all other reality, including exalted patriarchs, angels, or other exalted personages. The First and The Last is such a title and would have been understood in that manner.


Jesus As The First and The Last,
What cannot be argued is that thrice in the book of Revelation Jesus claims the title of "First and Last". In the first two instance, these verses cannot be speaking of any one other than Jesus, since God the Father never died. [All Emphasis Added]
 

And to the angel of the church in Smyrna write: These things saith the first and the last, who was dead, and lived again: [Revelation 2:8]

    And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as one dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying, Fear not; I am the first and the last, and the Living one; and I was dead, and behold, I am alive for evermore, and I have the keys of death and of Hades. [Revelation 1:17-18]

It has been theorized that Jesus was not called The First and The Last in Revelation for the same reasons that God the Father called Himself The First and The Last. One theory is that Jesus was so called because He was the first and last one raised from the dead by God (every other believer will be raised by God the Father). However, this attempt to explain away the passages from Revelation is a very poor one ... for several reasons.

    1) There is absolutely no evidence that the term the "First and Last" is being used for two entirely different reasons.

    2) The First and The Last is not only a very exalted title for God the Father, it is a unified concept. One cannot take this unified concept, separate "the First" from "the Last", and then thumb through the Bible to find any reference to Jesus being the "first" of anything, or the "last" of anything.

    3) The fact that the term is the exact title that Isaiah used, makes Isaiah's intended meaning the only valid one. And Isaiah was speaking of the eternal, everlasting, unchanging God.. the Holy one of Israel. .. the Creator who was before all things, and who will be after all things, all qualities that John was obviously ascribing to Jesus. (Virtually all direct, or passing references, in Revelation are primarily to the Old Testament, not the New)

    4) The Deity of Christ is obvious, if one were to read the text from Isaiah, and the text from Revelation, without any preconceived ideas.


God The Father As The Alpha and The Omega, and The Beginning and The End
In the New Testament book of Revelation, God is twice called the One who was, who is, and who is to come. The first time occurs in a benediction from God the Father, and the second as the words of the four living creatures, who "give glory and honor and thanks to him that sitteth on the throne"

    John to the seven churches that are in Asia: Grace to you and peace, from him who is and who was and who is to come; and from the seven Spirits that are before his throne; and from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loveth us, and loosed us from our sins by his blood; [Revelation 1:4-5]

    Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord God, the Almighty, who was and who is and who is to come. And when the living creatures shall give glory and honor and thanks to him that sitteth on the throne, to him that liveth for ever and ever [Revelation 4:8-9

Also, while there may be some argument here, let us grant that both the following verses are spoken by God the Father. While we have already heard Him described as the One who was, who is, and who is to come, these next two verses add the titles of the "Alpha and the Omega", and "the Beginning and the End". [All Emphasis Added]

    I am the Alpha and the Omega, saith the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty. [Revelation 1:8]

    And he said unto me, They are come to pass. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely. He that overcometh shall inherit these things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son. [Revelation 21:6-7]

Note: There is nothing particularly significant about there being so many different designations, simply because the terms "First and Last", "Beginning and End", and the "Alpha and Omega" are virtually synonymous... various expressions of the same thought. Alpha is the first letter of the Greek alphabet, while Omega is the 24th and last. Therefore, God calling Himself the Alpha and The Omega is the same as Him saying He is the First and the Last, or the Beginning and the End.


Jesus As The First and The Last and The Alpha and The Omega/The Beginning and The End,
Revelation 22 includes all three identifying names [All Emphasis Added]

    Behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to render to each man according as his work is. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end. Blessed are they that wash their robes, that they may have the right to come to the tree of life, and may enter in by the gates into the city. Without are the dogs, and the sorcerers, and the fornicators, and the murderers, and the idolaters, and every one that loveth and maketh a lie. I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things for the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, the bright, the morning star. [Revelation 22:12-16]

How can we be sure it is Jesus who is speaking? Two reasons

1) Just three verses later in verse 16, we read "I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things" ().

2) Verse 12... "Behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to render to each man according as his work is " is exactly what Jesus said in Matthew 16:27...

    For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then shall he render unto every man according to his deeds. [Matthew 16:27]

So, unless God the Father was parroting Jesus, it is unarguable that it is Jesus who is claiming for Himself all three titles ... "The Alpha and the Omega, The First and the Last, The Beginning and the End".

Having examined much of what the Bible says about Jesus, let us turn to the words of the Saviour Himself, who made some astonishing claims.

 

Footnote I... John 1:1.. God or A god?
In spite of the overwhelming testimony throughout the entire Gospel of John, there are some who argue about the translation of John 1:1. The New World Translation of the Jehovah's Witnesses reads, "In the beginning was the word and the word was with God and the word was a god," which makes Jesus to be an inferior being to God. In refutation of this translation, I will explain the Greek rules behind the proper translation and argue that the Greek word God (theos) in John 1:1c must be translated in the definite or qualitative sense--written God with a capital G--rather than indefinitely--a god--as the NWT has done. This discussion will get a little technical, but the importance of the subject deserves careful attention.

Let me first define some key terms of Greek grammar. An anarthrous noun is a noun without the definite article, the English equivalent of the word the. A noun in the nominative case in Greek often signifies that this is the subject of the sentence. A predicate nominative noun is a noun in the same case and is equivalent to the subject. The Greek construction of John1:1c looks like this, theos e^n ho logos, and is literally translated "God was the Word."

The subject of this phrase is the Word (ho logos). We know this because it is in the Greek nominative case and it possesses the definite article ho. God (theos) is in the nominative case and does not have an article. It precedes the equative verb "was" (e^n), and therefore is the predicate nominative.

The Jehovah's Witnesses argue that since God (theos) does not have the article before it, it must be translated indefinitely. So we get their translation, "a god." However, there are other possibilities available for translation.

According to a Greek grammar rule called Colwell's rule, the construction in John 1:1c--anarthrous predicate nominative (theos)equative verb (e^n)articular noun (ho logos)does not automatically mean that the predicate nominative must be indefinite. Colwell's rule, in summary, states that an anarthrous predicate nominative preceeding an equative verb can be translated as either (1) definite, (2) qualitative, or (3) indefinite. Thus, (1) as a definite noun the Word equals God, (2) as a qualitative the Word has the attributes and qualities of God, or (3) as an indefinite noun the Word is a god. Context determines which one it will be.

In the vast majority of cases in the New Testament, especially in the Gospel of John, this construction is translated as a qualitative or definite noun. Greek Scholar Dan Wallace writes, "an anarthrous pre verbal PN [predicate nominative] is normally qualitative, sometimes definite and only rarely indefinite. . . . We believe there may be some in the NT, but this is nevertheless the most poorly attested semantic force for such a construction."(1)

Furthermore, the translators of the New World Translation are not even consistent with their own rule of translation. Throughout John we find instances of an anarthrous God (theos) not translated as "a god," but as "God." John 1:6 and 1:18 are clear examples of this. Therefore, to argue that God (theos) in John 1:1c must be translated as indefinite solely because it has no article is clearly incorrect.

In an effort to insure that our decision agrees with the overall context of John's Gospel, we must see if the Gospel of John argues that Christ is inferior to God. As I showed previously, this is certainly not the case.

We must conclude that grammar and context argue against an indefinite translation that makes the Word an inferior being to God. The noun God (theos) should be translated "God," as a definite or qualitative, thus upholding the fact that Jesus is 100 percent God and 100 percent man. [The Trinity and The Deity Of Christ by Patrick Zukeran.] [PLACE IN TEXT]


Footnote II...The Name "Jehovah"
As said by Tracey R Rich in The Name of G-d (http://www.jewfaq.org/name.htm)

     With the Temple destroyed and the prohibition on pronouncing The Name outside of the Temple, pronunciation of the Name fell into disuse. Scholars passed down knowledge of the correct pronunciation of YHVH for many generations, but eventually the correct pronunciation was lost, and we no longer know it with any certainty. We do not know what vowels were used, or even whether the Vav in the Name was a vowel or a consonant. See Hebrew Alphabet for more information about the difficulties in pronouncing Hebrew. Some religious scholars suggest that the Name was pronounced "Yahweh," but others do not find this pronunciation particularly persuasive. Historian Flavius Josephus, who was born a kohein (Priest. A descendant of Aaron) at a time when the pronunciation of the Name was still known, said that the name was four vowels (War of the Jews, Book V, Chapter 5), probably referring to the fact that each of the four consonants in the name can serve in Hebrew as a vowel or vowel marker.

     Some people render the four-letter Name as "Jehovah," but this pronunciation is particularly unlikely. The word "Jehovah" comes from the fact that ancient Jewish texts used to put the vowels of the Name "Adonai" (the usual substitute for YHVH) under the consonants of YHVH to remind people not to pronounce YHVH as written. A sixteenth century German Christian scribe, while transliterating the Bible into Latin for the Pope, wrote the Name out as it appeared in his texts, with the consonants of YHVH and the vowels of Adonai, and came up with the word JeHoVaH ("J" is pronounced "Y" in German), and the name stuck. [PLACE IN TEXT]


End Notes

[1] Who Is Michael the Archangel? http://www.watchtower.org/e/bh/appendix_11.htm

[1b] http://www.watchtower.org/e/ti/index.htm

[2] Doy Moyer. The Deity of Jesus Christ. http://www.dmoyer.com/studywell/pdfdownloads/assets/DeityJesus.pdf

[3] Brian J. Wright. Jesus as Theos (God): A Textual Examination. http://bible.org/article/jesus-Theos-god-textual-examination

[4] Tracey R Rich. www.jewfaq.org The Name of G-d. http://www.jewfaq.org/name.html

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Index To Deity of Christ

Artwork provided courtesy of James "theo" Theopistos.