Who Jesus is? -- A Deeper Look
Only Scripture can answer the question above.
What was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we have looked at and touched with our hands, concerning the Word of Life—
and the life was manifested, and we have seen and testify and proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and was manifested to us—
what we have seen and heard we proclaim to you also, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ (1 Jn 1:1–3, NASB 1995 Update).
Jesus', claims to deity is when he spoke metaphorically of His person: e.g.
- "I am the bread of life" (Jn 6.35)
- "I am the gate" (Jn 10.9)
- "I am the good shepherd" (JN 10:14)
Yet he didn't say "I am God". To say so:
- In a Jewish context would have caused controversy and confusion.
- In a Pagan context, it would have caused misunderstanding.
The Christians belief that Jesus was one with God is gathering or collaboration of materials about Jesus by others:
- The uniqueness of his person.
- The authority of His teaching
- The awesomeness of His deeds.
- Above all the power of His resurrection.
These are from those who knew Him personally and the language of divinity in proclaiming devotion to Him.
Early Christians background was rooted in a strict Jewish monotheism. Jews/Christians would accept death over sacrificing to Caesar or to the pagan deities.
Please note that Christians from the very beginning addressed Jesus as Lord (1 Cor. 8:5, 6) immediately and not a long process. It was an open, natural, unforced devotion to Jesus as Lord and Messiah. This caused a rift between Christians and their Jewish parent.
The NT reserves referring to Jesus as God directly. However, there are seven specific references that refer to Jesus as God:
- JN 1:1, 18 "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
- "No one has seen God at any time; the only begotten God who is in the bosom of the Father, He has explained Him.
- JN 20:28. "Thomas answered and said to Him, “My Lord and my God!”
- Rom. 9:5 -- "whose are the fathers, and from whom is the Christ according to the flesh, who is over all, God blessed forever. Amen".
- Titus 2:13 -- "looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus".
- Heb 1:8 -- But of the Son He says, “Your throne, O God, is forever and ever, And the righteous scepter is the scepter of His kingdom".
- 2 Pet 1:1 -- "Simon Peter, a bond-servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who have received a faith of the same kind as ours, by the righteousness of our God and Savior, Jesus Christ."
"The use of theos ["God"] as a christological title shows NOT that Jesus is God-in-action or God-in-revelation but rather that he is God-by-nature:
- The deeds and words of Jesus the deeds and words of God.
- The nature of Jesus is the nature of God; what God is, Jesus is.
- By nature, as well as by action, Jesus is God."
Read and think. Many of you have made your point on the passages above, elsewhere in these forum, spare this thread the rehashing of them here. STAY turned!... CM