The Divinity of Jesus in the Gospels: Part 1

21 11 2013

One claim made by the Jehovah Witness cult is that Jesus never claimed to be God. I want to look to the Bible to see what claims Jesus made about Himself. When we look at the words of the New Testament we can see that not only did Jesus claim to be God but the enemies of Christ even recognized His claims and what they meant. Let’s start in the book of John. I met a man who was studying with the Jw’s and they told him that there is only 1 verse used to teach the Trinity and that was John 1:1. As we will see there are numerous passages in which we see the doctrine of the Triune Godhead but let’s start with this passage of John 1:1.

The Bible says, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” This is a definite statement of the Deity of the Lord Jesus Christ. We know He is the one called the Word because of verse 14, “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.” We see in verse 3, “All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.” So all things were made by this Word. Who does the Bible say created the world? Look at Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.”

The Jw Bible has re-translated the passage to make Jesus something other than what He is but they cannot escape the truth. Look at their translation from their 2013 revision. In John 1:1, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was a god.” Here they take the Word or Jesus Christ and they add in the letter “a” to define Him as a god. Now there is only one true God as the Bible teaches and all other gods must be false gods. This makes Jesus Christ a false God.

What about verse 3? “All things came into existence through him, and apart from him not even one thing came into existence.” So they agree here that Jesus created everything (although they believe He Himself was a created being). According to their Bible who created everything? Look at Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” Here their Bible agrees that Jesus Christ is God.

My point in these lessons is to show that even though the JW religion has re-translated the Bible on multiple occasions they are not fully able to erase the divinity of Jesus because it is so fully taught in the Scriptures. Moving on let’s turn to a new passage. In John 5 we see not only that Jesus had the power to heal but that He had power over God’s law. “Jesus saith unto him, Rise, take up thy bed, and walk. And immediately the man was made whole, and took up his bed, and walked: and on the same day was the sabbath.” (John 5:8-9) His power over disease was astounding but then He tells the man to violate the sabbath by taking up his bed and walking home. No angel of God would command a man to violate a law of God and yet Jesus demonstrated not only power to heal this man physically but authority for him to break the sabbath. He as God and lawgiver held power over the law.

The term Son of God is often said by the JW religion to mean that Jesus was a created being and not equal with God and yet the Pharisees in the time of Christ understood what it meant. Look at verse 18, “Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he not only had broken the sabbath, but said also that God was his Father, making himself equal with God.” You say, “yes well they thought that but it wasn’t true.” Here is the problem, if I tell a mere mortal that they are thinking themselves equal with God then they would quickly deny such a charge and say, “no, no I’m not saying I’m equal with God at all.” Jesus made no attempt to thwart this thought in their mind.

In fact He encourages this thought. In verse 21 He says that just as the Father raises the dead so the Son raises the dead. In verse 26 He says that just as the Father has life in Himself so the Son has life in Himself. In verse 22 He says that the Father judges no man but has given all judgment to the Son. The most direct and blasphemous thing Jesus said if He in fact is not God is found in verse 23, “That all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent him.” He says that He is to be honored the same as God the Father. What does the Father ay about this? Look at Isaiah 42:8, “I am the Lord: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images.”

So God has declared He will not share His glory with another and yet Jesus said He is to be honored with the same honor the Father receives. If He is not God then He is a blasphemer. In John 8:56 Jesus makes an interesting statement, “Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad.” They were puzzled how Abraham who was long dead had seen Jesus’ day. They responded, “Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham?” (Vs.57) Look at the amazing answer Jesus gives, “Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.” (Vs. 58) Here Jesus says that He was before Abraham in fact He is saying that the I Am who spoke to Moses in the burning bush, the one who claimed to be the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob was actually Him. 

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