TITLE: Doctrine of Jesus – Humanity and Divinity
TEXT: John 1:1-5
THE HUMANITY OF JESUS CHRIST
THE DIVINITY OF JESUS CHRIST
by Kim Linton
People who call themselves Christian are basically proclaiming they believe God exists. Not only do they believe God exists, they also believe the Bible accurately reveals who God is. Unfortunately, some people who claim to be a Christian don’t understand the significance of their proclamation, and as a result are easy targets for individuals and groups who misrepresent Christianity and the divinity of Jesus. Regardless of religious affiliation, personal convictions or denomination, those of us who claim to be Christians must agree on a few things.
Was Jesus God, an angel or just a man?
As Christians, the divinity of Jesus is one point we cannot disagree on. The Bible makes it abundantly clear that Jesus was and is God. Unfortunately, most Christians drawn in by deceptive teaching are well-meaning folks just looking for answers. They are usually people who tend to “ride the fence” when it comes to their faith. They wait for someone else to tell them what to think, and instead of studying and learning for themselves they end up knowing just enough to be dangerous.
Who did Jesus claim to be?
People who deny the divinity of Jesus often use clever scriptural distortions to back up their claims. Even with the multitude of scriptures that undeniably support Jesus’ divinity, they somehow “work them out” until they no longer resemble the actual text or intended meaning (regardless of version, original Greek or otherwise). For me, the most convincing proof that Jesus is God came when I decided to study who he claimed to be.
Most will agree Jesus was a good teacher, philosopher and prophet. After examining the Bible and writings of other groups/cults who claim to be Christian (but deny the divinity of Jesus), there was only one conclusion to make. C.S. Lewis, author of Mere Christianity and one of the most admired Christian apologists of the twentieth century, said from Jesus’ own claims he must either be God or is a “lunatic on a level with a man who says he is a poached egg or a devilish liar.”
Here are a few Bible verses that defend the divinity of Jesus. Keep in mind there are many, many more. I could spend days discussing the topic, but let’s just deal with a few major passages.
What God said about Jesus
Matthew 1:22-23: All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: “The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel – which means, “God with us.” So, Jesus is Immanuel, which means “God with us.”
Some groups attempt to explain this one by saying God is with us all (in a generic sort of way). When you take this verse at face value, while also considering related passages, it’s pretty difficult to tweak it to mean anything other than what it says.
Hebrews 1:7-8: In speaking of the angels he (God) says, “He makes his angels winds, his servants flames of fire.” But about the Son he says, “Your throne, O God, will last for ever and ever, and righteousness will be the scepter of your kingdom.”
In all my years as a Christian I have yet to hear one person or cult be able to explain this passage away – and many have tried. God the Father is clearly calling the Son (Jesus) God. Also, God makes a very clear distinction between his angels, servants and the Son.
Isaiah 9:6: “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And He will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”
In this passage, Isaiah (a monotheistic Jewish prophet) is calling a human “Mighty God” which was a controversial statement to say the least. God obviously fulfilled his prophecy centuries later through Jesus Christ.
What Jesus said about himself
John 8:56-58: “Your father Abraham rejoiced at the thought of seeing my day; he saw it and was glad.” “You are not yet fifty years old,” the Jews said to him, “and you have seen Abraham?” “I tell you the truth,” Jesus answered, “before Abraham was born, I am.”
Compare this verse to Exodus 3:14 which reads, God said to Moses, “I am who I am. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I AM has sent me to you.’ ” Obviously, Jesus was claiming to be the same “I AM” (God) who spoke to Moses.
John 10:30-33: Jesus said, “I and the Father are one.” Again the Jews picked up stones to stone him, but Jesus said to them, “I have shown you many great miracles from the Father. For which of these do you stone me?” “We are not stoning you for any of these,” replied the Jews, “but for blasphemy, because you, a mere man, claim to be God.”
Many who deny the divinity of Jesus point to “I and the Father are one” to say we are all one in purpose with God. What they are unable to explain is why Jesus did not deny he was claiming to be God. Why do you think Jesus was crucified? It was because the Jews knew Jesus was claiming to be their messiah (also see Matthew 14:32-33 where Jesus accepted worship from the disciples).
John 14:6-9: Philip said to Him, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us.” Jesus said to him, “Have I been so long with you, and yet you have not come to know me, Philip? He who has seen me has seen the Father; how do you say, ‘Show us the Father’?”
Here again, Jesus is saying he and God the Father are one. I’ve heard folks use the same argument about everyone being “one with God,” but I really don’t see how this bold statement by the Son can be twisted. In all these passages Jesus is clearly claiming to be God.