1) Jesus Christ - God, or God's Son?
2) Do we really know the true definition of God as He in fact is?
3) God is one,, and the Father is that one God
4) Impediments to learning the truth about this subject.
5) Our mediator, the man Christ Jesus.
6) The second and last Adam, the man from heaven who is back in heaven.
7) Jesus was and still is the son of man
8) Understanding the kind of man that Christ is.
9) What does the Bible clearly teach about God and Jesus?
10) The Bible clearly distinguishes between Jesus and the one literal God.
11) The tried and sure testimony of a 'hostile witness'.
12) More impediments to overcome.
13) Is Jesus God or God's Holy servant?
14) The dual nature of Christ theories.
15) "Your Holy servant Jesus"
16) Does calling Jesus (very) God honor Him or Jesus saying ‘I AM’, mean that He is God?
17) Did God die?
18) More proof that Jesus was and is a man.
19) God is not, never has been, nor can He ever be a man.
20) God is not an angel.
Chapter 1) JESUS CHRIST - GOD, OR GOD‘S SON?
As I would be reading the Bible, I would regularly come to scriptures such as this one, and more and more I found the implications impossible to ignore: “…with one accord they raised their voice in prayer TO GOD: O MASTER, YOU ARE THE GOD WHO MADE THE UNIVERSE…Herod and Pontius Pilate…conspired against YOUR HOLY SERVANT JESUS, WHOM YOU ANOINTED… NOW LORD,…perform miraculous signs and wonders through the name of YOUR HOLY SERVANT JESUS, WHOM YOU ANOINTED” (Acts. 4:24-31). Why would the apostles, fresh from being discipled for three years with Jesus, and freshly filled with the Holy Spirit, be praying to ‘God the Triune Being’, and mention Jesus to God as being God’s Servant, or God’s Son, IF JESUS WERE IN FACT LITERALLY GOD, or an equal member of the triune God? It regularly seemed absolutely certain to me that in this and many other verses of Scripture, the writer considered God to be one being, The Father, and Jesus to be God’s Son, and not the God they were referring to. And why did God shake the meeting place and fill everyone with the Holy Spirit after that prayer, if it was wrong? I was taught by men that God was a Trinity of three Persons who were all equally God, one of whom is ‘God the Son‘, and that they all together constitute the one true God! I was taught and believed that Jesus was God, period!
Apparently, these seeming contradictions do not pose a problem for most Bible reading Christians. And the many seeming contradictions I kept finding, all combined, apparently do not amount to any reason for reconsideration to the vast majority of modern Christians. God has been so EXTREMELY merciful and gracious to me that I have had a love growing for Him to want to know who He is, and who this wonderful Jesus really is, who loved me and gave Himself for me. “He who is forgiven much loves much“ (Lk.7:47). I kept asking God to reveal Jesus to me, and I kept asking Jesus to reveal Himself to me. He eventually taught me that if I would obey His commands, He would reveal Himself to me, and that through knowing Him as God’s Son He would reveal God the Father to me (Jn.14:21, Mt.11:27). Jesus helps us understand and experientially know the true God, as it says, “And we know that the Son of God is come, and has given us an understanding that we might know Him that is true; and we are in Him that is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God, and life eternal” (1Jn.5:20).
What do Christians mean when we teach that Jesus is fully God and fully man? How can Jesus really be absolutely God WHILE AT THE SAME TIME BEING ABSOLUTELY MAN? If Jesus is literally God, WHY DOES HE CLAIM TO HAVE A GOD? HOW CAN ABSOLUTE GOD HAVE A GOD? Why does the Bible never mention that God is a Trinity even once? Why doesn’t the Bible ever come right out and clearly say that Jesus is God even once? Why does the Bible never say that the Holy Spirit is God? Why do we sometimes pray to, sing to, and even worship the Holy Spirit WITHOUT ONE SCRIPTURAL PRECEDENT? Is the one and only true God really a 'Trinity' of three Gods in perfect unity? If God is a 'Trinity', and the FATHER IS GOD, then IS THE FATHER A 'TRINITY'? IF JESUS IS GOD, AND GOD IS A 'Trinity', then IS JESUS A 'Trinity'? HOW COULD JESUS BE GOD, who is one, AND BE FORSAKEN BY GOD AT THE SAME TIME? If Jesus is God, HOW COULD GOD, WHO IS IMMORTAL, DIE? During the three days Jesus was dead, WAS THE ‘TRINITY’ OPERATING AT TWO THIRDS CAPACITY? WAS GOD STILL COMPLETE WHILE JESUS WAS DEAD? In other words, if God is a 'Trinity', WAS THE TRIUNE GOD STILL A COMPLETE 'TRINITY' WHILE 'GOD THE SON' WAS DEAD? DID GOD DIE, or only a body, or only a human nature with a body? WAS JESUS FULLY GOD BETWEEN THE TIME THAT GOD FORSOOK HIM UNTIL HE DIED ON THE CROSS? Was Jesus LITERALLY all knowing and all powerful God while He was a baby inside Mary? Was He God and sustaining the universe while he was nursing at Mary’s breasts?
Some say that Jesus was God as the Word in heaven, then He became a man while in His body of flesh, and then He was resurrected and ascended back to heaven to be God again. That doesn’t fit the biblical account, however, as I believe I shall prove. If you insist that Thomas’ statement to Jesus, “My Lord and my God!”, is proof that Jesus was his God, then you should be consistent and recognize (along with most trinitarians) that if that were true, then Jesus necessarily had to be Thomas’ God the whole time He was a child and man of flesh on earth, although that whole time Jesus was worshipping, praying to and claiming that God was His God. That doesn't make any sense.
Some people confidently point out that Scripture teaches that Jesus was and is still a man. They say that the Bible clearly proves that God is not a man, can't be tempted, is invisible, can't be and has never been seen by sinful man, and certainly cannot die. Others just as confidently say that Jesus is God, that He received worship, was called God by Scripture, and is obviously no ordinary man. Is it really possible that both of these positions could be true simultaneously? In the following pages I will attempt to prove to the honest seeker of truth that Jesus is a man, much different and greater that we think man to be, and that He is also God, again in a different way than most of us think. Employing repetition at times I will now address these questions.
Chapter 2) DO WE REALLY KNOW THE TRUE DEFINITION OF GOD AS HE IN FACT IS?
I am like a child explaining what he has learned about the entire universe to other children, as I indelibly recognize and appreciate the scope and potential of my subject matter as being the most infinitely comprehensive subject possible. I do not consider myself an expert on God or the Lord. We must all learn to correctly define our terms. Too many of us get stuck comparing apples with oranges. In the Oxford English Dictionary God is defined as, “in Jewish and Christian theology, the supreme being, regarded as the creator and ruler of the universe.“ The Bible defines God as: the Giver of Life, the Father of Spirits, the Glorious Creator, the Living God, a Consuming Fire, the God of Peace, and the One and Only True God, the God of all comfort and encouragement, the Judge of all mankind. It teaches that God is Spirit, God is Light, God is Love. He is holy, faithful, righteous, just, good, eternal, immortal, invisible, wise, omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent, immutable, transcendent and yet imminent. He cannot be tempted, lie, fail, die, do or even directly look upon evil. It teaches that God is not a man, is not the author of confusion, nor is He a respecter of persons. It states that no man has ever seen God at any time. And it teaches that God has no God before Him. The Bible calls Him “The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ“.
Since The God by biblical definition cannot be a man, does this mean that Jesus, who Himself says that He is a man, is not literally God? The consistent truth throughout the Bible proves that Jesus is divine - meaning like God, of God, and in God, and that the fullness of God’s essence is in Him by the fullness of the Holy Spirit. Yet the clear truth is that Jesus is not literally God, and obviously not God Himself. The Father is God. Jesus is not the Father, whom Jesus says is the only true God (Jn. 17:3), and therefore Jesus is not God in the ultimate sense, as most modern day proponents of Christ’s deity assert and contend. The truth does not always seem right to the majority, especially to religious people, who usually already have their minds made up. There is the one, true and absolute God, the only God and Father of our Lord Jesus, who alone is literally God. He is God the Father. Anyone who contradicts this bedrock of the gospel is believing falsehood to whatever degree, and has a major foundational problem.
But God has a dearly loved unique Son named Jesus, with whom He has fully shared everything He has, even HIS divine nature, so that this Son of God is just like God in every possible way. That is why in almost every letter to the churches (epistles) you will find that they start out mentioning God the Father AND the Lord Jesus Christ. You will see throughout the book of Revelation that the Lamb is right in the midst of God’s throne with God, though not as being God the Son the second member of the blessed holy Trinity, but as being the supremely exalted Lamb of God, who sits at God’s right hand in power and glory. Jesus says, “Believe in God, also believe in me.” Jn. 14:1 “God, also… me.” Jesus always taught that “the Father Himself” was God (Jn. 5:37, 16:27, Rev. 21:3)
Chapter 3) GOD IS ONE, AND THE FATHER IS THAT ONE GOD
It is not only crucial for the church to hear that God is one, not three, it is in fact part of God’s greatest commandment that we do so. Jesus was asked, “’Of all the commandments, which is the most important?’ ‘The most important one,’ answered Jesus, ‘is this: “HEAR, O ISRAEL, THE LORD OUR GOD, THE LORD IS ONE. LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART…”’(Mk.12:28-30). The sinful nature of man seems bent on making God out to be more than one. This has been a distinguishing characteristic of the most pagan of religions. If a person believes that there are more than one God, then it is much easier for them to fail to recognize their accountability to their single minded Creator with one absolute law. In organized Christianity, the adoption of the pagan Trinity concept has made it easier for some who continue in slavery to their pet sins to count on Jesus as the easier going God to save them, despite God‘s absolute holy laws and seemingly extreme judgments. The one true God of Israel seems so harsh in His judgments and so impossible to please. For this same reason Mary has also been adopted by many as a god who is extra compassionate, and who has extra influence with Jesus.
While there will be many explanations to try to explain away the clear truth that our God is one, it is a constant truth throughout the Bible. Many have tried to reconcile this exclusively clear foundational tenant of Judaism and early Christianity with the modern (yet amazing so widely accepted) aberration of the Trinity doctrine by rationalizations which usually insist that Biblical Monotheism merely confirms the unity of the Trinity. Yet they conveniently ignore the fact that the concept of a Triune God is mysteriously absent from the whole of the Bible, except by a combination of a very few obscure or mistranslated scriptures. We always only see the one God Almighty, always being the one and only God, the Father, the God who sent Jesus His Son. The One True God is one person, “the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ“, “the Father Himself“.
When Jesus talked about and prayed to this one God, He called Him “God”, “Father“, “The Only True God“ (Jn.17:3), “The Father”, “My Father”, “Our Father”, “Your Father”, “Righteous Father”, and “Holy Father”. He was not praying to nor talking about a ‘Trinity’ which somehow included Himself as “God the Son”, nor was He talking to or about some incomplete ‘Trinity’ while He was here on Earth as the Son of Man. He talked to God, He talked about God, He clearly identified God as “The Father”, His God, His Father, and He clearly identified His God and Father as being THE God, the only true God. Jesus gave God the credit for creating the world (Mk.13:19), and taught that we should believe in God, AND ALSO IN Himself too. (Jn.14:1) When the man told Jesus that God is only one and that we should worship HIM alone, Jesus saw that he had answered wisely. (Mk.12:32,34) Was Jesus being deceptive by always talking about God as being someone other than Himself, as being His God and Father who was in heaven? The apostles Paul and Peter repeatedly call the one true God, Jesus’ God, “The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ”. I will demonstrate these foundational truths repeatedly in various ways, because somehow most of our precious brethren have lost this basic apostolic understanding.
Chapter 4) IMPEDIMENTS TO LEARNING THE TRUTH ABOUT THIS SUBJECT
Gaining a proper perspective about this issue requires a revelation from God Himself (Mt. 16:17). Often we have not because we ask not, so please ask your Father now, or reading this may not do you much good. It greatly helps if we can compartmentalize what men (flesh and blood) have taught us all our lives (Mt. 16:17), while we step back to study the whole picture, deliberately becoming as unbiased as possible. It requires that we come to understand exactly what the whole Bible says about God and Jesus. It also requires that we avoid basing our concept of who God and Jesus are upon several select and seemingly congruent isolated scriptures, that when combined to the exclusion of the rest seem to support the common beliefs. Nor should we ever fully accept the popular, even universally agreed upon theories about this most important subject without making absolutely sure of their veracity. It can be equally as threatening to a clear and accurate knowledge of God, and the Lord Jesus, to rely upon what we’ve always been so certain of. Think of all the people who are in 'cults’ and false religions who are so sure they are ‘right’, who don’t want correction. They apparently don’t realize how important and profitable itis to know the truth about God and Jesus. DO WE REALIZE HOW IMPORTANT AND PROFITABLE IT IS TO KNOW THE TRUTH ABOUT GOD AND JESUS? Our actions prove what we really believe, and that’s why we’re judged according to our deeds.
One reason that many Christians don't learn the real truth about important controversial subjects, is that so few Christians really learn to love and seek God diligently, studying and praying EARNESTLY about the specifics of the costly and important issues of His Word. So few grow to love God more than pleasing men for what seems to be more immediate personal gain, of differing types. Many don’t have a clear understanding of what the WHOLE Bible has to say, especially the New Testament. Many have never fasted enough to break the power of their appetites. (Phil.3:18,19,Rom.16:18) Many are not really sure whether or not they have received the precious gift of the Holy Spirit, who leads us into all truth, since they believed (Ac.5:32,19:2), or erroneously assume that they have when they haven‘t. Many have not learned the great profit of these things, of humbling themselves and loving the truth. Many still don’t start their morning in effective prayer, praise, worship and intercession, asking for everything important from God, for what they lack, need and want. Many are still afraid to speak out about Jesus publicly. And, so many of us have not yet learned to trust and obey God when it involves suffering, which has resulted in our missing countless opportunities to employ and prove our faith and love for God, ignoring the Spirit's leadings to our own great loss, so often shamefully including myself. 'Biblical Research Reports', http://www.biblicalresearchreports.com, wrote: "One of the things that I have discovered as I have researched different doctrines is that many Christian scholars often do not do the careful research that we assume that they have done. Things get repeated over and over and are believed to be true, but people don't take the time to verify that what they are repeating is accurate."
Some have said I shouldn't have added these next parts, which talk about other vital issues in our Christian walk, but I believe that because the Christian life is all interconnected, these issues cannot be disconnected. I believe I must present the truth about Christ together with the other vital aspects of truth, for the truth of Christ is never a separate issue we can embrace without embracing Him in every area of our lives. Yes, I am spotlighting this one particular issue concerning the real God, our Father, and about the real Lord Jesus, His Son. But I am compelled to remind anyone who reads this of some of the startling phenomenon characterizing the last days church. Most Christians are still polluting themselves in front of the idol of their television sets, lazily indulging themselves in the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, so sure that it isn’t really affecting them too much. Most haven’t yet learned that those who are sexually immoral, or dirty minded, will not inherit God’s Kingdom. Most have not realized that ALL who are immoral and liars will have their part in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone (Rev. 21:8). Many of us have yet to make much progress in learning to bridle our tongues. Many Christians still lie, love this world and money, often over-indulging in godless chatter with ungodly friends and family. And, most Christians are still playing with secret, or not so secret sin that destroys their good conscience and thus their faith and true love. (1Tim.1:5)
Any one of these particular things continuing to characterize our lives can insure that we are prime candidates to be swept along by the “strong delusion” of the last days that will deceive all who delight in wickedness (lust, watching worldly movies, sexual sin, etc.) instead of loving the real truth that could save them by leading them into a truly holy Christ centered life. (2Thess.2:10-12) I am still far from being mature, and include myself as being most needy of God’s grace and strength every day, but God knows I am by His grace daily living and teaching the truth. And I am certain that if you have any degree of true maturity in Christ, and you think differently than these things I am teaching, God will reveal it to you (Phil.3:15), because God leads us all progressively into the same truths, Hallelujah!.
If you desire to be sure that you know the truth about something so important yet so controversial, you must first recognize the possibility that you may be wrong about the subject, ESPECIALLY IF YOU ARE A LEADER OR TEACHER. This calls for all the humility, wisdom and diligence we have (hopefully) been praying for and practicing, to now be fully employed in our search for the unmitigated truth. We must all learn to love the truth enough to scrutinize every important issue in an unbiased manner, and adjust our views, if necessary, to God’s views.
If you haven’t yet learned to get good at admitting when you are wrong when arguing with your spouse or authority, you can easily allow that same blindness from pride to cause you to lose proper focus on other important issues. If any one of us can discover ourselves to be wrong in this present matter, what an excellent opportunity to humble ourselves to the depths we rarely see, and to be blessed accordingly to an exponential degree. Since we are "saved by grace", then getting God's grace is of the utmost importance. Truly humbling ourselves, as in the obedience of true faith, consistent earnest prayer, confession, accepting correction, repentance, fasting and admitting when we are wrong, is the main criteria God uses to dispense His grace to us. The Bible says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble” (1 Pt.5:5).
You may have heard testimonies about how the confessant was wrong in the past, but the implication (even if it’s not clearly asserted) is that they are right now, more or less. But how often have you seen a person stand up in front of a crowd and say, “I see that I am wrong right NOW. Up to now I’ve been a secret deviant, a deliberate secret sinner indulging in ‘such and such sin or shameful perversion‘”. Or, “I’ve been believing, preaching and teaching wrongly about ‘such and such’. I have failed to study properly, therefore I have misunderstood. I have relied upon others instead of making absolutely sure of these important things by diligently seeking God.” Well, the reason we've rarely seen this occur is not because there are so few of us who are sinning, believing and/or teaching wrongly. It is almost always because the OPPORTUNITY to respond to that degree of humility and honesty, when correction came, WAS NOT RECOGNIZED as being the PRIME OPPORTUNITY that it really was.
Chapter 5) OUR MEDIATOR, THE MAN CHRIST JESUS
The most dangerous of the common errors in the world is the opinion that Jesus is merely a ‘good man’, a ‘great teacher’, and or a ‘prophet of God’. This is heresy and obviously wrong to any person who loves the truth. Truly He was and is all these things, but He is so much more than these. Jesus clearly claimed to be God’s Son and our Lord. If these claims are untrue or exaggerated, then He could not have been a truly good man, a truly great teacher, or a real prophet. Jesus revealed His identity and pre-existence as God's Son (Jn.6:33,8:58), while regularly emphasizing and acknowledging His obvious humanity, always speaking in ways that would have precluded any misunderstanding of this kind, though unlikely as it then was, never even coming close to claiming to literally BE God in the absolute and ultimate sense of the word.
ADAM, A TYPE OF JESUS (ROM.5:15), WAS GOD'S SON WHILE BEING A MAN. JESUS IS ALSO THE SON OF GOD WHILE ALSO BECOMING A MAN, THE SECOND AND LAST ADAM, THE MAN FROM HEAVEN. He’s very different and yet similar to Adam. Adam was from the dust of the earth, and the Lord Jesus is the man from heaven (1 Cor. 15:47 ‘Received Text’ & KJV erroneously inserts “Lord“ instead of “man“). And nowhere are we told anything has changed. To the undeniable contrary, the Bible teaches that AFTER His resurrection God was His God, and ours (Jn. 20:17). And even AFTER His ascension to His original glory at God’s right hand, the Bible teaches that He was and is the most unique, special and ultimate Man who even now still acknowledges His Head, source and God (Rev.1:6, 3:12). As the angel told Mary, "the Holy Thing born shall be called the Son of God" (Lk.1:35). In other words, THE SON OF MAN IS THE SON OF GOD. Jesus said, "WHO do men pronounce ME, THE SON OF MAN, TO BE?... Peter said, 'YOU (the Son of Man) ARE… THE SON OF THE LIVING GOD!'" (Mt.16:13). “YOU, (THE SON OF MAN) ARE… THE SON OF GOD.” Therefore those who try to split Jesus up and say that 'the Son of Man' refers to the man Jesus and 'the Son of God' refers to 'God the Son' are creating an unbiblical and untrue dichotomy out of the one Man who always spoke of Himself as being God’s Son, and of our God as being His God, The God, His Father and The Father Himself (Mt.12:15, Mk.3:7, Lk.3:23,24:15,36, Jn.2:24,4:2,44, 5:13,18, 19* ,5:26 ,37,6:61, 8:59, 16:27,19:7,Rev. 21:3**). Again, take this opportunity to note and confirm that the Son of Man IS the Son of God. To deny Christ’s humanity is almost as serious an error as to deny His unique status as God’s Son, because both truths are indispensable to accepting God’s testimony and properly believing in the real gospel and the real Lord Jesus (Gal. 1:7-9, 1Jn.4:2,5:5).
Two out of the three times the New Testament records God talking to men directly, He declares, “THIS IS MY SON...” Jesus is called the Messiah of God, the Lamb of God, the Son of Man, and the Son of God, among other names. When Jesus is actually called ‘God’ in Scripture, then IT MUST BE UNDERSTOOD WITHIN THE CONTEXT OF WHO THE WHOLE OF SCRIPTURE SAYS HE IS. I will soon address the fact that this new Adam, this heavenly man, Jesus, is called God because He is a God (who has a God), and therefore He is God in the proper perspective, not as being THE God Himself, nor as being literally God as being 'God the Son', co-equal with God the Father and the second member of some co-equal threesome of Gods united.
Chapter 6) THE SECOND AND LAST ADAM, THE MAN FROM HEAVEN WHO IS BACK IN HEAVEN
We all know the definition of the term 'man', or DO WE REALLY? And, WAS JESUS THEN, AND IS JESUS NOW THE SAME KIND OF 'MAN' THAT WE NORMALLY THINK OF when we hear or speak that word? Do we really know the biblical definition of the term 'man' as the Holy Spirit means it when the Scriptures speak of Messiah's humanity? One major problem in understanding what the Bible says about Christ's humanity lies in this failure to discern the new definition God gives to man in Christ, and thus to this very common word as it applies to Him.
We are conditioned to think of the term 'man' as we know man to be, usually unaware of the true meaning of "the man Christ Jesus" (1Tim.2:5), "the second Adam", "the last Adam", "the spiritual man", and "the second man from heaven" (1Cor.15:47). The realities of the meanings behind these designations reveal that GOD HAS CREATED A WHOLE NEW CREATION AND RACE OF MAN IN CHRIST, of which and of whom we are now members. This new race of man is completely summed up within and actually comprised of Messiah Himself, who is now "ALL THINGS, AND IN ALL" (Col.3:11). He is such as Lord on God’s behalf, and to God’s great glory, until God subjects all His enemies under His feet, then Christ hands over the Kingdom to God and will be made subject to Him again so that God may be all in all again (1 Cor. 15:24-28). Notice this next dissection of Ephesians 4:13. Our goal and inevitable destiny is to all mature together into “unity of the faith and in our knowledge of THE SON OF God.” We will “IN THIS WAY” corporately become "a full grown man" (Eph.4:13 by growing up fully into Him who is our head Eph.4:15,5:23).
Next it says, “Then we shall no longer be children, carried by the waves and blown about by every shifting wind of teaching of deceitful men who lead others into error…“ (Eph.4:14). THE CRUCIAL FACT THAT WE NEED TO UNDERSTAND BY REVELATION FROM GOD, BEFORE WE CAN EVER ACCEPT THE POSSIBILITY THAT ALMOST 'EVERYONE' IN THE MODERN CHURCH IS WRONG ABOUT THIS SUBJECT, IS THAT JESUS HAS COMPLETELY REDEFINED THE REALITY BEHIND THE WORD ‘MAN’. It is vital to our understanding of these related subjects that we remember these facts.
The last Adam became a life giving spiritual man who is like God, no longer with a flesh and blood body, but His same body actually BECAME a glorious, spiritual - but very real - body, immortal and mighty. Like David’s seed became Solomon in all his earthly glory, so too Christ was raised, ascended and glorified bodily as an incorruptible and glorious spiritual human, the exact image of the invisible God as a glorified new “M”an. He now actually fills the entire universe in every way, and sustains the vast universe by His powerful word. He is seated at God’s right hand as an eternal high priest to ever mediate between God and man, this Man Christ Jesus.
Chapter 7) JESUS WAS AND STILL IS THE SON OF MAN
The Bible is consistently very clear that Jesus was a real man. Jesus' claim to be the 'Son of Man' means, among other things, that He was truly a real man. While simultaneously being the Son of God by the Holy Spirit, the Son of Man was born of man (of the seed of David - Rom.1:3) through Mary, human (not sinful, but human as the first Adam) in every way (Heb.2:14,17). Some might say, “Yeah, but that was only according to the flesh”, as if Jesus had not become completely human indeed. And although in order to be able to become human, as the pre-existing Logos OF God, He had emptied Himself of that glory which He had shared FROM and WITH God, yet He retained His DIVINE identity even as the man He became, the man Yeshua, as being THE VERY Son of God. When the Bible records that the Samaritans “became believers” in Jesus, the very next verse tells us what truths they came to believe. They said, “…WE KNOW THAT THIS MAN REALLY IS THE SAVIOR OF THE WORLD.” (Mk.4:41,42)
It is interesting to notice that in many of the scriptures dealing with Christ’s (then) future position as glorified Lord, and concerning His return as conquering King, Jesus speaks of Himself as ‘The Son of Man’. He is also identifying Himself with the prophecies about the Messiah in the book of Daniel, where one like a Son of Man comes to God and is brought into a position of favored access before God, the Ancient of Days, and is given the Kingdom, that all should serve Him. (Dan. 7:13, 14) The Bible says Jesus is given authority to judge because He is a son of man.
When Jesus was being tempted in the desert, “the devil took him” twice to places where he tempted Him. The God who has revealed Himself to me through His Son Jesus is not a God who can be taken anywhere by the devil, nor can He ever be tempted to do evil (Jms.1:13). If your God, or even one third of your God at any time in His existence was taken anywhere by the devil, tempted, or died, then you have believed in the wrong God! Some should read that last sentence again. Jesus again identified Himself as a man when saying of Himself, “MAN shall not live by bread alone…”, and Satan did not argue with Him and say that He was not really a man. Satan knows good and well He was a man and that His victories over temptation, sin and death are valid and indisputable. Christ’s victories would be illegitimate if He accomplished them as being God. Remember, GOD CANNOT CHANGE. It is completely impossible. HE IS IMMUTABLE! He said, “I change not.“ Yet Christ changed when He became a man. “Wherefore in all things it behooved him TO BE MADE like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God” (Heb.2:17,18). He had been “MADE” "a little lower than the angels" (Heb.2:7), and then "once MADE perfect" (Heb.5:9) "he BECAME... much better and more excellent than the angels" (Heb.1:4). When the 'Logos' BECAME FLESH, He completely took upon Himself human nature (Phil.2:7). He LEARNED obedience and WAS PERFECTED through His sufferings (Heb.5:8,9). Christ changed again when He became dead, and then became alive again. Then after His resurrection He was permanently restored to the glory which He formerly had with God before creation. And now, like God, He will never change again.
Just as fascinating and important as who Jesus was, is the fact that the Bible proves many times that our Lord Yeshua IS NOW STILL A MAN, even after His resurrection and ascension. The Bible never says that the man Jesus was or ever became literally God, either before or after His resurrection. There are several places in the Bible where the mistranslation of certain Bible versions has caused it to appear that way, along with a number of accurate verses that are misunderstood. It is completely impossible for anyone but God the Father to literally be God, and it is likewise impossible for God to BECOME A REAL MAN of flesh and blood, who as a created being has a God who is his source of being, whether begotten or created.
The Bible never says that Jesus stopped being a man when He "became a life giving Spirit". Rather, to the complete contrary the Bible proves that JUST AS "the first man Adam became a living soul", becoming a human who was also a son of God, SO ALSO "the last (man) Adam became a life giving Spirit" AS A "SPIRITUAL MAN" (1Cor.15:45). Now as the spiritual man Christ Jesus, who is the image and exact representation of God, He has been made Lord (1Cor.15:25,28) and gives to all who truly believe His eternal life.
The times Jesus is called a man in 1Corinthians 15:21,45-49 were all spoken of Him as being a man presently, at the time of writing, long AFTER HIS ASCENSION back to heaven (look it up, also 1Tim.2:5, Ac.2:22, 7:56,17:31, Rom.5:12-19, Rev.1:6,3:2,12). Jesus, the display of God's glory and His exact image, is now still a man even while back in His original glory, seated with God on His throne, just as we who overcome in union with Him will also share in His glory and join Him on His throne (Rev.3:21) as glorified (new kind of) humans, spiritual humans like Jesus. Jesus is now the firstborn of many brothers, a spiritual (new kind of human) being who is just like God in every possible way, and we shall be like Him to one degree or another!
When Jesus condescended to completely identify with us by partaking of flesh and blood IN LIKE MANNER AS US (Heb.2:14, Phil.2:5-11), in other words BECOMING HUMAN LIKE WE ARE (yet being without sin, ‘sin apart‘), He made it possible for us to now likewise completely identify with Him. He became human in like manner as us. We are not God and man, we are real and complete men, just as Jesus became. Now, through our faith in Him, we are baptized into vital union with Him. And in order to completely identify with us, Jesus was even "made to be sin for us" (2Cor.5:21). Now "in Christ" we may sanctify ourselves and even become the righteousness of God (2Cor.5:21, Eph.4:24), and yes, even become "partakers of the divine nature" (2Pt.1:4, Eph.3:19)! When the second and last Adam became a life giving Spirit, being glorified again and exalted to 'God's right hand', He took us who are in Him with Him (Eph.2:6, Col.3:3,4), for we who have been joined to Christ by baptism have become one spirit with Him (1Cor.6:17). We are, even now, genuine sons of God, while still genuinely human. We are a new kind of spiritual human beings, of whom Jesus is the supreme representative and firstborn brother! We who are truly in Christ are predestined to be conformed to His image! Even now we are being transformed into His glorious likeness, as we are taught by God's Spirit who Jesus really is, and therefore who we really are, for our identity is of Him who is our life (Jms.1:23,24, 2Cor.3:1,8, Col.3:4).
Notice the degree of revelation the apostle John 'speaks' with when he reports that we are in fact sons of God now! "How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!" (1Jn.3:1,2 - with obvious exhilaration). He who was divine (but not literally God) partook of our human nature, that we humans may now partake of God's holy and righteous nature (2Pt.1:4), as His children forever in Christ!
So this man Jesus, who proved to His disciples that He wasn't yet a spirit by letting them touch His resurrected human body, and by eating fish with them, ascended bodily back into heaven. This confirms that the second Adam hadn't yet received His glorified spiritual body until His ascension back to the Father, when He “…ascended higher than all the heavens, in order to fill the whole universe” (Eph.4:10). At the proper time we who belong to Messiah will also be clothed with our new glorious heavenly spiritual bodies (1Cor.15:42-54,Rom.8:23), like His. Amazingly, this SAME MAN Jesus is the one who will come back in the same manner in which He left (Ac.1:11), though then He will be fully revealed as the glory and power of God personified, in His present, ultimately fascinating (2Thes.1:10) and powerful spiritual body! This same Jesus, who has become a life giving Spirit LIKE GOD, who now actually fills the entire universe (Eph.1:23,4:10), IS "the man Christ Jesus" spoken of by the apostle Paul in 1Timothy 2:5 concerning Jesus' present state of being!
Notice another proof that Jesus became and still is a man, this written about Him by the apostle Paul over twenty years (according to the general consensus of the scholars) after His ascension back into heaven. The Bible says, “For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, how much more did God’s grace and the gift that came by the grace of THE ONE MAN, JESUS CHRIST, overflow to the many!…For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through THE ONE (MAN), JESUS CHRIST.” (Rom.5:15,17)
These are not isolated scriptures, the whole Bible concurs and confirms these truths. Concerning who Jesus is now, the Bible many times clearly says He was and is a man many years after His ascension and glorification to God‘s right hand. "Since death came through a man, THE RESURRECTION OF THE DEAD COMES ALSO THROUGH A MAN (Jesus). For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive …THE FIRST MAN ADAM BECAME A LIVING SOUL, THE LAST (MAN) ADAM, (BECAME) A LIFE GIVING SPIRIT. THE SPIRITUAL (MAN) DID NOT COME FIRST, BUT THE NATURAL, AND AFTER THAT THE SPIRITUAL (MAN). THE FIRST MAN WAS OF THE DUST OF THE EARTH, THE SECOND MAN (WAS) FROM HEAVEN. AS WAS THE EARTHLY MAN, SO ARE THOSE WHO ARE OF THE EARTH:AND AS IS THE MAN FROM HEAVEN, SO ALSO ARE THOSE WHO ARE OF HEAVEN. AND JUST AS WE HAVE BORNE THE LIKENESS OF THE EARTHLY MAN, SO SHALL WE BEAR THE LIKENESS OF THE MAN FROM HEAVEN" (1Cor.15:21,22,45-49). Jesus said that He would sit at God's right hand and then return to earth as the Son of MAN (Lk.22:69,Mt.26:64).
I repeat, the Scripture portion above quoted from First Corinthians chapter 15, and the one quoted before it from Romans chapter five were written long after His ascension, as pertaining to who Jesus was then and is now (“…as IS the man from heaven…). Next we can see another example written after Christ’s ascension where Apostolic Teaching and Scripture again clearly spells out THE FACT THAT JESUS IS STILL HUMAN: "For he (God) has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by THE MAN HE HAS APPOINTED…” THE MAN? Again, Paul calls Jesus “the man”. Now I have a few questions: JESUS IS THE MAN WHO HAS APPOINTED? The Bible says that JESUS IS THE MAN whom GOD has appointed! Wait a minute! I WAS TOLD THAT JESUS WAS AND IS GOD! So again, is Jesus the man the Trinity appointed (while at the same time being God, a part of this appointing Trinity), or is He the man whom God, the Father Himself, appointed? And, is Jesus the God-man God has appointed, or the man? And, is Jesus the God whom God has appointed? It continues, “…He has given proof of this to all men by raising him from the dead" (Ac.17:31). I emphatically reiterate that this Scripture, in accord with the rest of Scripture and written long after Christ's ascension, clearly states that JESUS IS NOW THE MAN WHOM GOD HAS APPOINTED to one day judge the world. Our great God has never been appointed by anyone, much less ever been raised from the dead. HOW DO WE DETERMINE OUR DEFINITIONS?
So how should we define or redefine our terms? For example, is the word 'religion' a negative word in your mind, with connotations of man's dismal efforts to please God, or is it a good word? The Holy Spirit uses the word 'religion' as a good thing in a positive light, while of course differentiating between ‘false religion’ that cannot save us and the characteristics of ‘pure religion’ (Jms.1:27). So the ‘religion’ that God is talking about concerns our practical devotion to God and our Lord Jesus by a life of true faith, righteousness and love. Being properly ‘religious’ is therefore an excellent thing in reality (the way God sees things), but the common negative associations conjured by the term in the minds of others is also a reality we must consider and address.
The word 'believe' is another word that is so common that we automatically think we understand what the Bible means when it says that we must ‘believe’ in Jesus, but the meaning of the Greek word is quite different from our conventional understanding. Likewise, the profound biblical meanings behind such common words as 'love', 'faith', 'hope', and 'glory', much less 'God' and 'Jesus', are often very far from our common understandings of these terms.
If we want to be accurate in our knowledge of the truth, we must learn to define our own understandings according to what God is really meaning in the Scriptures, and that is only possible through revelation or experiential knowledge imparted by the Spirit (1Cor.2:10-16). Our goal, therefore, should be to increasingly know and understand God and His Son Jesus by understanding the Scriptures in the light of learning what the Holy Spirit means by the words He chose. We should do this while also remembering when communicating to others, to try to be aware of what the listener is likely to be understanding when we use a particular word or phrase. We should try to be careful to use the best words or phrases that convey the intended meanings, in a clear and concise manner, while avoiding or explaining words and phrases likely to be misunderstood (Neh.8:8,12). And we must avoid defining our terms according to apostate teachers who often make it sound like living truly holy, righteous and religious is a horrible thing.
Chapter 8) UNDERSTANDING THE KIND OF MAN THAT CHRIST IS
I have just delineated the biblical distinction of two different types of 'man'. There is the natural, earthly, fleshly man, and there is now the new kind of man from heaven who, after having become a man of flesh, has now become a completely spiritual Man who is the exact image and representation of our invisible God. These terms 'spirit' and 'spiritual' are terms that we, for the most part, do not properly understand, but suffice it to say that God is spiritual, and spirit does not mean some ethereal nothingness lacking reality, but quite the contrary. The spiritual realities are in fact just as real and much more significant and foundational than these temporary physical realities we now see and feel. This Jesus now HAS A NEW, POWERFUL AND VERY GLORIOUS SPIRITUAL BODY (1Cor.15:44), and He completely fills the entire universe (Eph.1:23), and in Him all things subsist (Col.1:17).
As Lord He now upholds all things in this whole vast universe by the word of His power, being the exact visible expression of God's invisible reality or substance (Heb.1:3,Col.1:15). Note from the original Greek word “substance” of Hebrews 1:3 that Jesus is not the same invisible substance of God, but the visible image of God's invisible substance, and who is filled with God's invisible substance by the Holy Spirit. All these truths are included in what the Bible means when it calls Jesus a man, and therefore these realities are part of my God given concept of "the man Christ Jesus".
Chapter 9) WHAT DOES THE BIBLE CLEARLY TEACH ABOUT GOD AND JESUS?
"FOR THERE IS ONE GOD, AND ONE MEDIATOR BETWEEN GOD AND MEN, THE MAN CHRIST JESUS" (1Tim.2:5). Jesus told us that the Scripture cannot be broken (Jn.10:35). According to the scholars this scripture was written by the apostle Paul over thirty years after Christ ascended back into heaven. You have to do a lot of twisting, or completely ignore the clear implications of this verse to teach the unscriptural doctrine of the Trinity, or to teach that Jesus is literally God. This verse again undeniably asserts that JESUS IS NOW THE MAN, not ‘God’, not 'fully God and fully man', and not 'God the Son'. In fact, this verse says that JESUS IS A ‘MAN’ IN DIRECT CONTRADISTINCTION TO THE ONE WHO IS HERE CALLED ‘GOD’. This verse is one of the very many scriptures that prove that Jesus is someone other than the one who is repeatedly and SINGULARLY called, in one form or another, the one and only true God. How can anyone in good conscience say, in the light of these many clear scriptures, that Jesus is literally God? Also note that by definition a mediator cannot be one of the parties he mediates between. There are many men, but only one God. How can Jesus mediate for us before God if He is God?
However, the Bible also calls Jesus God in Hebrews 1:8, and also identifies Him so completely with Yahweh, the LORD of the Old Testament, that it sometimes speaks of Christ as if He were Yahweh Himself. And Jesus sometimes speaks as if He were God. So, is Jesus literally God, or is there some other explanation for this complete identification of Jesus with Yahweh?
Chapter 10) THE BIBLE CLEARLY DISTINGUISHES BETWEEN JESUS AND THE ONE LITERAL GOD
He is filled with the fullness of God's divine nature (Col.1:19,2:9). He is the exact image and derived likeness of God. He is in perfect unity with God. He is the perfect representation of God. He is completely in God, and God is completely in Him. For these reasons, and because of His designated God-like function as our Lord, He is often correctly spoken of in ways synonymous with God. As God's exact image and representative, we should think of God and Jesus in many of the same ways, even though He is not literally God. The church has truly erred by attributing to Jesus absolute deity and full equality with God. Just as Pharaoh said concerning Joseph, who was a well known type of Christ who followed him, “…only in the throne will I be greater than you”, God has made Jesus Lord and given Him all possible equality, yet He will always be Jesus’ God and Father, obviously greater than He. Most Christians know that the Bible distinguishes between Jesus and the Father, so that most recognize that Jesus is not the Father. Most also realize that the Bible differentiates between the Father and the Son, and so that therefore the Son is not the Father. But so few Christians seem to be able to notice that the Bible almost always clearly distinguishes between Jesus and God, making it clear that Jesus is not the one God of the Bible, who is the Father only. When translated and understood accurately, the whole of Scripture clearly distinguishes between Jesus our Lord, and His God, the Father, who is also our God (Jn.20:17).
Those who have noticed the REGULAR DISTINCTIONS BETWEEN GOD AND JESUS, and yet still believe that He is somehow 'fully God', obviously have not noticed that these distinctions themselves exclude the doctrine of the full deity of Christ and the Trinity. Remember that from the beginning of the Catholic Church, through many centuries and down to today, almost all ’flesh and blood’ have taught that Jesus is God, co-equal with the Father, one third of the Triune God, and that to believe otherwise disqualifies one from eternal life. In the context of this historical reality many have decided that other scriptures seem to show that Jesus is God, therefore He must be 'God in the flesh', 'God by nature', 'God the Son', or 'The God-man', etc. They apparently see no major contradiction in this position, nor in reconciling this belief with the clear scriptures that I point out in this work, which show their position to be inconsistent, illogical and contradictory. THESE SEEM TO HAVE ACCIDENTALLY BELIEVED IN A DIFFERENT AND VARYING TERM FOR ‘GOD’, OTHER THAN THAT WHICH THE BIBLE ASCRIBES. The Logos, who was the divine expression of God, though never literally God, as I will continue to prove from Scripture, became a man of flesh, and GOD LIVED IN THIS MAN (not body) by THE GIFT OF A FULL DISPENSATION OF HIS HOLY SPIRIT, while of course still living in heaven. As I will say more than once, Jesus was not God walking around in a mere body that finally died. He was and is the very human Messiah (1Tim.2:5), in whom the fullness of divinity dwells bodily, God‘s very Son.
Rabbi Pinchas Lapide, a famous Jewish rabbinic scholar, said that the idea that God became a man was the sauce that would make Christianity palatable to the pagan world. Rabbi Isser Z. Weisberg affirms that, ‘…with regards to Christianity, its most serious deviation from Judaism is by far the concept of the Trinity, and attributing Divinity to a human.’ David Berger, in a response to Weisberg, agrees..." (Jews for Jesus, March 1, 1997)
Chapter 11) THE TRIED AND SURE TESTIMONY OF A 'HOSTILE WITNESS'
In a court of law there is no verbal testimony that excels the proven accuracy of a genuine ‘hostile witness’. This is a witness who clearly and strongly opposes your assertions, but who is found to be agreeing with you on some particular point, usually for compelling reasons, with obvious lack of self interest as a motive. When a ’hostile source’ concedes any key point, it is called “the criterion of embarrassment”, and it carries a lot of weight with those who understand its significance. When someone reluctantly (or not) admits what in fact may prove their whole case to be wrong, they have given what is called “enemy attestation”, that goes against the trend of their goals, and history has proven that the genuine hostile witness is usually always telling the truth. Concerning the ludicrous assertions of so many preachers and ‘experts‘ that Jesus is fully God AND fully man at the same time, I introduce hostile witness number one, the great modern day leading Christian scholar, champion Christian philosopher, intellectual, theologian, apologist, professor and teacher, Dr. R. C. Sproul of ’Ligonier Ministries’. I am not being sarcastic in noting his credits, for in many ways he completely demolishes atheistic false reasoning’s and intellectually proves in debate God’s obvious existence, and many other truths. However, when trying to prove the doctrine of the Trinity, and the certain aspects of the ‘Eternal Security Doctrine‘, he really exemplifies the folly of being taught by men and of unwittingly promoting ear tickling teaching in direct opposition to clear biblical truth. In his DVD called, “The Mystery of the Trinity”, WHILE TRYING TO PROVE the doctrine of the Trinity, he admits the following concerning those who assert that Jesus is fully God and fully man: “Now you DO have a contradiction! If you’re saying that the person is completely and totally divine, then you have one nature. YOU CAN’T HAVE A PERSON WHO’S COMPLETELY DIVINE AND COMPLETELY HUMAN AT THE SAME TIME AND IN THE SAME RELATION - THAT’S ABSURD!!” (absurd: out of harmony with reason-unreasonable-ridiculous-silly” Oxford Dictionary).
The entire Bible consistently speaks of one God, the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. It teaches that this one true God sent His beloved Son to this world to die for our sins, Yeshua, whom God raised from the dead, and made Him to be both Lord and Christ (Ac.2:36). These foundational truths used to comprise the foundation of the gospel and the church, and yes, still do. Again, how can we ignore all these clear scriptures: "WE KNOW THAT…THERE IS NO GOD BUT ONE…THERE ARE SO CALLED ‘GODS’, WHETHER IN HEAVEN OR ON EARTH, AS INDEED THERE ARE MANY GODS AND MANY LORDS, YET FOR US THERE IS BUT ONE GOD, THE FATHER, FROM WHOM ALL THINGS CAME AND FOR WHOM WE LIVE; AND THERE IS BUT ONE LORD, JESUS CHRIST, THROUGH WHOM ALL THINGS CAME AND THROUGH WHOM WE LIVE. BUT NOT EVERYONE KNOWS THIS." (1Cor.8:6). I again remind you, that the Scripture cannot be broken. This scripture is (combined with 1Tim.2:5 & Eph.4:5,6, 1Tim.6:15,16, Mt.16:16) THE DEFINITIVE APOSTOLIC DOCTRINE, in a nutshell, of who God and Jesus are in relation to us. This is the basic truth about God and Jesus, and that is exactly why the apostles started their “Apostles’ Creed” with almost these exact words.
I will soon attempt to explain how this was the official church creed, and how that was changed. The doctrine of the Trinity is completely opposed to these scriptures, for these clearly identify God as being the Father only, and Jesus as being someone other than God. God has spelled it out clearly for us, knowing the coming confusion. But I believe that in His great wisdom, and for His purposes and glory, He deliberately allowed some misunderstandings and then mistranslations to occur. He obviously allowed the New Testament to be less than perfectly clear about these things. And He allowed it to contain some seemingly contradictory truths (such as Thomas saying, "My Lord and my God!") for those who would err in the future, to possibly be misunderstood by the majority who would erroneously follow the crowd, if they were so inclined. This has also allowed the opportunity for those who would become more completely approved and perfected to seek the costly truth, humble themselves in correction, and then stand for the truth against the misperceptions and persecutions of the often zealous crowd of conformists.
Again, JESUS SAID, “Now this is eternal life: that they may know YOU, THE ONLY TRUE GOD, AND JESUS CHRIST, WHOM YOU SENT.” (Jn. 17:3) Now, I maintain that in light of these many clear scriptures, it is impossible for BOTH the Trinity doctrine to be true and these scriptures to be true also. Here Jesus Himself calls God the only true God, and He cannot be talking to the Trinity, for He mentions Himself to the only true God, and yet He is supposed to be part of that only true God according to the Trinity doctrine. Yes, Jesus mentions Himself to His God who He is praying to, again showing that He cannot be the only true God, who He says sent Him. This one scripture can clarify the issue to us if we study it and pray for understanding.
The Bible says that there is now "...ONE LORD (Jesus), one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all, and through all, and in you all." (Eph.4:5,6) It seems extremely clear to me that these four above listed scriptures alone completely clarify this basic part of the issue for the truly honest seeker of truth. And we will find that the rest of the whole Bible is consistent with these truths when we carefully scrutinize the places that seem to contradict these facts in the light of what I report. Many of us have become dull to understand because we think we already know, and because of worldliness, sin, and not rightly knowing and interpreting the scriptures. Although I believe that this part of the foundational correction is by comparison relatively easy for those who love the truth to receive when revealed by the Spirit of God, yet clarification of the peripheral issues may not always be as easy. We have been so ‘brainwashed’ in our early learning, that understanding some of the other commonly misunderstood scriptures will require extra humility, honesty, prayer and diligent seeking. “NOW I WANT YOU TO REALIZE THAT THE HEAD OF EVERY MAN IS CHRIST, AND THE HEAD OF THE WOMAN IS MAN, AND THE HEAD OF CHRIST IS GOD”. (1Cor.11:3) Notice here that every man is not Christ, the woman is not man, and CHRIST IS NOT GOD, WHO IS HIS HEAD. This verse again confirms the truths I am teaching here, that Christ is not completely equal to God, but rather God is Jesus’ God, head, and authority.
JESUS SAID, “…I HAVE NOT FOUND YOUR DEEDS COMPLETE IN THE SIGHT OF MY GOD…HIM WHO OVERCOMES I WILL MAKE A PILLAR IN THE TEMPLE OF MY GOD…I WILL WRITE ON HIM THE NAME OF MY GOD AND THE NAME OF THE CITY OF MY GOD…WHICH IS COMING FROM MY GOD.” (Rev. 3:2, 12) After His resurrection and ascension, in the very book which reveals Jesus Christ, five times here Jesus says that He has a God. Literal God has no God. We will look at these things more closely now, and with the help of repetition of some of the major points I will attempt to highlight the truth concerning these matters.
Chapter 12) MORE IMPEDIMENTS TO OVERCOME
If you look carefully, you will find confirmation of these facts consistently throughout the whole Bible. Any scripture, therefore, that seems to contradict this incontrovertible consensus should be prayerfully studied and compared to the full context of the whole of Scripture. It is wise to refrain from believing or teaching anything important, especially concerning the person of God and our Lord Jesus, that even seems to possibly contradict clear scriptural evidence until we have weighed, studied and reconciled all the pertinent information together, with much prayer, even if 'everyone' agrees with the particular dubious teaching.
Think of all the circumstantial and doctrinal 'curve balls' that God's people have been 'thrown' in the past, where almost everyone in the church at that time agreed together, and it turned out they were all ‘out’! Are we so certain that we are that much better than these millions of faceless Israelites leaving Egypt, who agreed and died together with the majority spies, of whom only two out of about two million were right and made it into the promised land? (Num.Ch.13,14) So confident that we are much more right than the many Israelites who were worshipping household gods (like our modern TV) along with the LORD, or Baal AND the LORD, eventually so carelessly serving God that they killed the Lord Jesus Christ Himself? Or are we so much better than all of the Christian deviants, past and present, who have gone ’foul’ from the true faith, that we could not be wrong about an issue this major? Even the apostle Peter was wrong about something very serious while being in complete agreement with the vast majority of Christians (Gal.2:11-21).
Many from back then until now have 'struck out' by prideful arguing against the truth, becoming so entrenched in defending their position that they failed to be carefully humble, honest and objective, so sure they were that they were 'right'. Often they were certain that they were defending God's honor, sometimes to the point of falsely accusing, otherwise persecuting and even killing God's people whom they had been commanded rather to love. All Christians have a major responsibility to get to the bottom of this issue once they realize that it is an important issue.
The responsibility increases all the more for those of us who teach, because "we who teach will be judged more strictly" (Jms.3:1). God can and has used many of us, some to a great degree, even though we have believed wrongly on certain matters in ignorance or naivety, especially when we have erred with the majority of Christians. However, if we stubbornly refuse correction from God by refusing to look into a controversial issue like this one properly, or teach others while in any important area proving to be uncorrectable ourselves, we should be prepared to be accountable for the consequences, especially once the Lord has brought it to our attention. To consider Jesus to be God’s Son instead of God is understandably very scary to anyone who is not sure, because they don't want to be guilty of relegating our glorious Lord to less than absolute God status if He is. That same subtle enemy, fear, the opposite of faith, can greatly inhibit our desire to investigate this issue to the depth it deserves. There is also a very powerful subliminal factor of fear and pride involved whenever we consider an 'oppositional view' to that which we are known by our loved ones, or publicly as having believed or taught to the contrary. There is no easily recognizable earthly incentive to diligently investigate a contradictory view concerning a major controversial issue which, if found to be correct, would warrant a public retraction of things we have already believed or taught, some of us for decades. Likewise, when someone within the comfort of universally agreed upon doctrinal 'security' begins to contemplate the depth of all the converging scriptures in such a complicated controversy as this, it is easy to experience a mental overload sufficient to tempt them to impulsively run back to the 'safe' territory of what 'everyone else' will confirm as being true.
These very powerful natural tendencies that hinder our search for and love of the truth are further compounded if we know that embracing a doctrinal correction means taking a minority view which is certain to be misunderstood, or worse. This kind of risk which involves such a great certainty of persecution is probably the greatest threat of all to our becoming tenaciously honest seekers of the truth, on this issue especially. The higher the risk, the greater the resistance to true objectivity, and the less diligent and comprehensive our investigation tends to be. These truths revealed to us by God are an extremely great treasure in disguise, and the key to true unity (Eph.4:13). It is so easy for Christian preachers (including aspiring ‘wannabees’) to hope and expect that others in the body of Christ will recognize their wisdom, gifts and calling, and so to be able to discern the Lord's voice through them. But it seems just as easy for these elders, at the same time, to accidentally disregard His truth or correction through seemingly less significant members of the body of Christ. For who today is truly correctable and teachable? Very rarely will you find anyone who is hungry to learn and do God's will when it really hurts now days, especially among teachers or leaders, who are usually old enough to be almost completely set in their beliefs. Most have often been taught and then proceeded to teach various subjects so often as to have their pride subtly engaging their hearts in ‘automatic over-ride' mode when the opportunity for correction came. They usually have precious reputations, ministries and self interests to consider that influence them subconsciously, but very powerfully. Major correction like this is usually especially distasteful for them, and moreover so often comes thru distasteful channels, giving those very few who will humbly listen an extremely great opportunity for grace that can produce the true greatness and power of Christ in us.
Chapter 13) IS JESUS GOD OR GOD'S HOLY SERVANT?
We can learn much about this matter from the precedent setting prayer of the apostles and other saints during the days of the early church, which I mentioned briefly at the beginning. Did they believe that Jesus was God? Notice who they prayed to, and who they talked to God about: "...with one accord they raised their voice in prayer TO GOD: 'O MASTER, YOU ARE THE GOD WHO MADE THE UNIVERSE and the earth and the sea and everything in them, who by the mouth of David your servant said, "Why did the nations rage haughtily, and the peoples plot in vain? The kings of the earth take their stand, and the rulers gather together against THE LORD AND AGAINST HIS CHRIST". Indeed Herod and Pontius Pilate met together with the Gentiles and the people of Israel in this city to conspire against YOUR HOLY SERVANT JESUS, WHO YOU ANOINTED. They did what your hand and will had predetermined would come to pass. Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to perform miraculous signs and wonders through the name of YOUR HOLY SERVANT JESUS.' After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly" (Ac.4:24-31). These apostles and saints prayed to God, praising and glorifying Him as Creator of all things, in the name of Jesus. THEY MENTION JESUS TO GOD TWICE AS BEING GOD'S “HOLY SERVANT!" Now I more clearly understand what Jesus meant when He said, "He who has ears, let him hear." He knew that most of us are hard of hearing spiritually, especially those of us who are so sure of ourselves. He meant that if you have been cultivating spiritual discernment, wisdom and humility, you especially need to carefully employ these now to hear and receive truths that are not easily recognizable. These apostles who led this unified prayer were the men chosen by our Lord to live with Him and learn from Him for about three years.
At this time they had already been born again, filled with the Holy Spirit, and Jesus had opened their understanding to what the Old Testament Scriptures meant concerning Him (Lk.24:45,Ac.1:3). They were living, teaching and praying in such a way as to form the foundation of the church (Eph.2:20). Their prayer demonstrates beyond any shadow of doubt that they did not believe that Jesus is literally God, nor did they pray to anything close to our modern day conception of ‘the Trinity‘. No, their prayer was not a mistake, for the apostle's lives and teachings were to a degree the continuation of the life and teachings of the Lord Jesus Himself (2Pt.3:2,Col.1:24). GOD HIMSELF VALIDATED THEIR PRAYER BY SHAKING THE MEETING PLACE AND FILLING EVERYONE WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT! Proper exegesis of this text clearly dictates that JESUS CANNOT BE GOD, FOR JESUS IS MENTIONED TWICE TO GOD, WHO IS THE ONLY ONE BEING ADDRESSED. Those praying also make it clear by their interpretation of the obvious meanings contained in Psalm 2:2 that THEY FULLY RECOGNIZED THAT YAHWEH, "THE LORD" OF THE OLD TESTAMENT, IS NOT THE SAME PERSON AS 'HIS CHRIST', who is now our Lord. It is very obvious that neither God nor Jesus were offended that Jesus was called 'God's Servant' instead of 'God'. When we believe and teach the truth more accurately about God and Jesus, and pray with zealous fervency, our prayers will elicit a more earth shaking response from God. As we are regularly filled with the Holy Spirit, we will end up publicly speaking God's word much more boldly! (Jms.5:16)
Is it not good enough that the Messiah was and is a man, the son of David while also being God's Son, God's promised Servant? Are these truths about His humanity so dishonorable and unpalatable to us that we must flatter Him by declaring Him to be God, often instead of properly obeying Him as Lord, when in fact God has already promoted this Jesus to the ultimately highest rank possible? (Phil.2:9) Be sure that this designation, 'God's Servant', is not a dishonorable title. It is one of the most distinguished titles in the Bible, and the apostles learned about who Jesus was from Christ Himself. Jesus identified Himself to them as a man, the Servant of God many times, associating Himself with these prophecies and calling Himself ‘a man‘, and the Son of Man.
Yet we also see the Bible describe the glory of God revealed to Isaiah (Is. 6:1) as being Christ’s glory in John 12:41, and we also see Jesus spoken of in Hebrews 1:10-12 as being the one spoken of in Psalm 102:25-27 when it is speaking of Yahweh God. I will address these. Here and throughout the Bible we will see that Jesus is divine, and sometimes spoken of as God, and Jesus is God and Jehovah in that He is completely one with God, God’s absolute revelation, Yahweh’s image and the display of God’s glory, through whom God made all things and who represents God in every way. In this perfect oneness with God, Jesus is God, and is Yahweh, yet only in the proper perspective. This does not mean that Jesus is literally God, nor that He is literally Yahweh Himself, nor God the Son who is completely equal with God, nor does this necessitate a Trinity of three Gods to explain the mystery. We must believe all the truths about our glorious Lord Jesus without going to either extreme, avoiding error by not going beyond what is written.
Chapter 14) THE DUAL NATURE OF CHRIST THEORIES
Various elaborate and theologically sophisticated explanations abound from intelligent scholars, theologians and other well meaning Christians, to rationalize how the Scriptures keep calling Jesus a "man" and "God's servant" while still maintaining that He is at the same time somehow literally God in one way or another. These plausible sounding explanations often center around the theory that the man Jesus can be both God and man because He had a human nature according to the flesh, and a divine nature as being God the Son according to the Spirit. Those who advocate these theories emphasize the truth of Christ’s possessing the fullness of God’s divine nature as being God’s Son, to the exclusion of the reality that there is only one Jesus, who is either man or very God. And they make the mistake of equating His divinity, the true deity of Jesus to mean absolute deity, which would mean that Jesus was literally God. Many people know that in the beginning the Logos was divine (Theos - ‘divine’, ’a God’ or ‘like God‘), existing in the form of God, but seem ignorant that the Word was made in human form(Phil.2:7), BECOMING COMPLETELY HUMAN WHILE STILL SHARING GOD’S NATURE, AS ADAM DID.
We as humans now share in God’s divine nature while still being very human (2Pt.1:4). Christ was and is completely full of God’s Spirit , yet was still man and not literally God. The Bible says in the King James Version that, “In Him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily” (Col.2:9). This term, ‘Godhead’, seems to have been created by Trinitarians to try to bolster the theory that God is a group, when in the original Greek this created term ‘Godhead’ really exclusively means “divinity”, as you can see in the Strong’s concordance. The Bible says that it pleased God that in Him (the Man Christ Jesus) all (the) fullness (of His Spirit and divinity) should dwell (Col.1:19). It also says that He was given the Spirit without measure (Jn.3:34). By God’s gift the fullness of God’s essence and nature dwell in Him bodily, by the full measure of the Holy Spirit living in Christ. Many think it says that Christ IS the fullness of God dwelling in the form of a body.
According to one such theory, Jesus is God Almighty, or 'God the Son', and came to Earth in a human body, who ate, slept, urinated, was tempted, beaten up, crucified, died and rose from the dead. This concept of The One True and Holy God Almighty in any way becoming a man of flesh and blood, defecating, being seen and tempted, praying to God and dying is completely foreign to the apostolic truth once and for all delivered to the saints. This mistake is absolutely contrary to the realization of God as He in fact really is. This type of theory of God becoming man is based on a mistranslation and misinterpretation of John 1:1, along with verse 14, as I will later try to prove, and is completely unscriptural. It will never be accepted by anyone who has been learning to know God as the awesome God He really is. And it will be soon displaced by the truth in the minds of those who are coming to know God in a more and more accurate knowledge.
According to most of these dual nature theories, Jesus is considered to be God, more specifically 'God the Son', the second member of 'the Triune God', or 'the Trinity'. He is supposedly fully God and fully man at the same time. He is supposedly fully God according to His divine nature: all knowing, all powerful, unable to be tempted, immortal, invisible, and completely equal to God the Father. And according to His human nature He is human: humble, obedient to the Father, and usually mild mannered. According to many of these theories, which in one form or the other have been almost universally accepted, Jesus speaks and acts at times as a man, praying and being tempted, and at times as God, doing miracles and knowing men‘s thoughts. But in reality JESUS IS ONE PERSON, AND HE HAS BEEN COMPLETELY HUMAN SINCE HIS INCARNATION, thank God, “IN WHOM...fullness of divinity dwells bodily.” (Col.2:9) A body is not “in whom“. "The Word BECAME flesh (a human being)..." (Jn.1:14). "HE EXISTED IN THE FORM OF GOD, yet He did not think that he should try to forcibly grasp equality with God. Instead of this, of his own free will he obediently gave up all HE HAD, AND TOOK THE NATURE OF A SERVANT. HE BECAME LIKE MAN AND APPEARED IN HUMAN LIKENESS" (Phil.2:6,7). The NEB Bible says, “…he did not think to snatch at equality with God, but made himself nothing, assuming the nature of a slave.”
One mistake sincere Christians make is to confuse MESSIAH'S DIVINE PRE-EXISTENCE WITH GOD WHILE BEING IN THE FORM OF GOD, with the fact that the Word BECAME TRULY HUMAN by nature (Jn.1:14,Phil.2:7). The Logos WAS like God, sharing His divine nature and therefore glory, but He was not literally God, as I believe I prove in this work. The terms 'Son of Man' and 'Son of God' both refer to two distinct aspects of the one Christ's identity, BOTH TERMS BEING RELATIVE TO THE MAN JESUS. ALTHOUGH THE DESIGNATION 'SON OF GOD' DISTINGUISHES CHRIST'S IDENTITY AS BEING INTIMATELY RELATED TO GOD, the term does not mean that He is literally God any more than it meant that the first Adam was God just because Scripture calls Him the son of God (Lk.3:38).
Chapter 15) "YOUR HOLY SERVANT JESUS"
I have just shown that Jesus was called God's Holy Servant by the early apostolic church in it's pristine glory and accuracy of truth. This is opposed to the flattering terms we have given Him instead of giving Him complete obedience, such as calling Jesus God and yet feasting our hearts on wicked pagan entertainments. Please pause and consider that. I have also proved that neither God nor Jesus was offended when Jesus was called God's Servant and God's Messiah (Christ). PETER ALSO CLEARLY CALLED JESUS GOD’S SERVANT LONG AFTER CHRIST’S ASCENSION. He said, "THE GOD OF ABRAHAM, ISAAC AND JACOB, THE GOD OF OUR FATHERS, HAS GLORIFIED HIS SERVANT JESUS...BUT GOD RAISED HIM from the dead" (Ac.3:13-15). I am sure that this statement again, with the rest of Scripture, proves very clearly that Jesus is not THE GOD of our fathers, is not THE GOD of Abraham, is not YAHWEH GOD, but is instead THE MESSIAH OF GOD (Ac.4:26).
So where did the apostles get the idea to dare to call Jesus ‘God's Servant’ instead of ‘God‘, or ‘God the Son‘? From the same sources we should all learn from to formulate correct beliefs about who God and Jesus are; they learned this from God Himself, from Jesus Himself, from the Holy Spirit, from the holy prophets and from the holy Scriptures. GOD HIMSELF CALLS JESUS HIS SERVANT: God said, "Here is MY SERVANT, WHOM I HAVE CHOSEN, THE ONE I LOVE, IN WHOM I DELIGHT; I WILL PUT MY SPIRIT ON HIM..." (Mt.12:18,Is.42:1). God has indeed put His Spirit on Jesus by filling Him without limit (Jn.3:34). Again He says, "Behold, MY SERVANT shall deal wisely, HE SHALL BE EXALTED AND LIFTED UP, AND SHALL BE VERY HIGH" (Is.52:13). Here we can see that it is God's Servant, and not God, who has now been promoted to the highest degree BY God (Phil.2:9). God is already highly exalted, and would need no promotion from anyone. Jesus Himself recognized that He was God's Servant. He spoke of God as "...the LORD that formed me from the womb to be his servant..." (Is.49:5). Also it says, "Who is among you that fears YAHWEH, THAT OBEYS THE VOICE OF HIS SERVANT?" (Is.50:10). Here we can deduce that it is much better to obey Jesus as God's Servant, than to flatter Him by calling Him God while not truly obeying Him. And He says, "...MY SERVANT DAVID SHALL BE THEIR PRINCE FOREVER" (Ez.37:25). Notice it doesn’t say that Jesus will be our God forever. And again, "...I will set one shepherd over them, and he shall feed them, even my servant David: He shall feed them and shall be their shepherd. And I THE LORD WILL BE THEIR GOD AND MY SERVANT DAVID PRINCE among them" (Ez.34:23). This was written after King David died. Of course the Jews understood these references to David to refer to Messiah, the descendant of David according to the flesh, who would live forever and rule as "Prince of the kings of the earth" (Rev.1:5). These verses agree with the rest of the Bible that Messiah is not literally God, nor did the Jews expect Him to be, but most modern Christians continue to consider their belief that Jesus is 'fully God' as a confirmation that they are true Christians!
For it is written, "Moses said, 'THE LORD will raise up for you a prophet LIKE ME from among your own people: you must listen to everything he tells you'...when GOD RAISED UP HIS SERVANT, HE SENT HIM first to you..." (Ac.3:22,26,Dt.18:15,18,19). Of course Jesus is God's Only Begotten Son, through whom the entire universe was created, and is therefore so much more important than Moses (Heb.3:3-6) or any ordinary prophet or servant of God. Messiah was faithful to God as a Son over God's house, which encompasses and eclipses His role as God's Servant (Heb.2:5,6), but it does not negate Christ's fulfillment of the prophecies concerning God's predicted human prophet and servant, who was to come (above quote,Is.52:13- ch.53,etc.).
The Old Testament also contains other prophetic quotes from the Spirit of Messiah, like the reference above from Ps.40:8, “I delight to do your will, O MY GOD”, where we can see clearly that He cannot be literally God, who has no God. And all this was recorded before Jesus actually came as Messiah. These prophetic insights give us an understanding of Christ's relationship to God, and IT HAS NEVER BEEN NOR IS IT NOW AS BEING GOD’S FULL EQUAL. I will later discuss the relative equality God has given to Christ as being His Son, and by exalting Him to His right hand. So we see that in the Old as well as so often in the New Testament, in one way or another, Jesus is quoted as referring to God as being someone other than Himself, again proving that He is not God, to whom He refers. For another example, the Spirit of Christ says, "...THE LORD GOD WILL HELP ME" (Is.50:7). These kinds of prophecies indicate the attitudes of Messiah's heart towards God, whether He literally spoke them or not. I believe He did speak these out, in order to fulfill the Scriptures, as was His manner (Lk.4:17-21, Jn.19:28).
Some say, "Those scriptures are only speaking about Jesus in His role as a man." I would first ask, ‘Didn’t the complete Son of God truly come in the flesh? (Jn.4:2, 2Jn.7), or was Jesus merely God in a body acting out a temporary role as a man? If that were true, why does Peter and Paul call Jesus a man long after His ascension into heaven (Ac.2:22, 1Tim.2:5)? Wasn’t all of Jesus the suffering servant of, the Christ of, and the Son of God who was sent to do God’s will? I believe that all the scriptures that talk about the man named Jesus Christ are speaking about him as just that, as the man He was and is, even when Thomas said to Him, "My Lord and my God!", and even when God calls Him, "O God", as I will soon explain. You can’t say Thomas was talking to Jesus as being his God, but that the rest of the scriptures that prove Jesus is or was a man who isn’t literally our God must be only talking about Jesus the man. We could only do that if that kind of separation has a basis in Scripture. But on the contrary, the Bible says that “There is…ONE LORD (JESUS)…” (Eph.4:5, 1Cor.8:6). I will soon more fully address the not so modern phenomenon of the theory that Jesus is literally God by nature while being fully man in nature. This almost universally believed theory teaches of the God Jesus whenever possible, and the man Jesus whenever absolutely necessary.
Chapter 16) DOES CALLING JESUS (VERY) GOD REALLY HONOR HIM? JESUS SAID ‘I AM’, DOESN’T THAT MEAN THAT HE IS GOD?
If you call Jesus our God, and say that He is fully equal to God the Father, are you truly honoring Jesus more than those who called Him God’s Holy Servant, including the apostles, Jesus and God Himself? If someone comes along after you and says that Jesus is greater than God, does their teaching honor Jesus even more than yours? Notice again the clear difference between Christ and God in this verse: "When Christ came into the world HE SAID, '...a body YOU prepared for ME. Here I AM. I HAVE COME TO DO YOUR WILL, O MY GOD" (Heb.10:5,7, Ps.40:7). Here we see Christ, the Logos, and we see the human body God prepared for Christ, and we also see God referred to. The body was not prepared for God, but by God for Christ. Is Jesus ever referring to God the Trinity, of whom He is a third part, in all the many times He refers to God and prays to God and calls Him His God?
In this last cited verse Jesus speaks the phrase, "I am" ('ego eimi'), similar to the phrase YAHWEH GOD used to reveal His name to Moses at 'the Burning Bush'. Many of those who argue that 'Jesus is fully God', use Christ's statement, "Before Abraham was born, I am" (Jn.8:58) to prove that He must be God Himself to use this similar phrase that God used. However, in the light of our present scripture, we can see that Jesus here uses the phrase 'I am' in the context of calling God "O my God", in subordination to Him as being His God. "Here I AM. I have come to do your will, O MY GOD." This conclusively demonstrates that Jesus’ saying, “I am” was not a declaration that He is literally God. Notice that this was the pre-incarnate Christ who existed in the form of God, while speaking of the body God had prepared for Him, who called God, “O my God.“ This is consistent with the other occasions where the Bible records the man Jesus calling God, 'My God', before, during and after His time here in the flesh, as I will continue to highlight. I will also continue to demonstrate how preposterous it is for any honest Bible teacher to say that Jesus is literally YAHWEH God Himself. When Jesus stated 'I am' in that way, He demonstrated His divine pre-existence, existing in perfect unity with God, and in the form of God as His Only Begotten Son, the Logos OF God, long before Abraham was born. The phrase God used when revealing Himself to Moses is translated into English as, “I AM THAT I AM”, which is an incomplete meaning of the original Hebrew. According to my studies, the Hebrew phrase, “Ehyeh Asshur Ehyeh” is more accurately translated “I exist (present) as what I am, and what I always have existed as (past), and what I will continue to exist as (future).” When Jesus said, “I AM”, He was speaking as the Son of God, the direct representation of the One who is, and was, and is to come. That is the Only True God, the self existing one, who has no God nor Father (Rev.4:8). Jesus said, “I am”, in similar fashion as His Father had said, and many of us have presumed to use that as proof that He was claiming to be 'fully God'.
To do this we must first ignore proper logic, then all the clear scriptures to the contrary, and then we must fail to properly recognize all the places that Jesus clearly explained what He meant, by declaring explicitly who ‘He is’. Since Jesus has identified Himself with God by saying, “I am”, then we will do well to carefully look for all the other scriptures which can define exactly who He claimed to be, and believe Him. Jesus said I am because He is one with the great I AM, and shares His name and identity. “’Who are you, they asked?‘, ‘JUST WHAT I HAVE BEEN CLAIMING ALL ALONG!’ Jesus replied.“ (Jn.8:25). Jesus said, “I am God’s Son” (Jn.10:36). Jesus said, “I am the root and offspring of David” (Rev. 2:16), “I am the way, (I am) the truth, (I am) the life” (Jn14:6). Jesus said, “I am the Bread of life” (Jn.6:35). Jesus said, “I am the Good Shepherd” (Jn.10:11). Jesus said, “I am the Light of the world” (Jn.8:12). Jesus said, “I am from Him (God) and He sent me” (Jn.7:29). Jesus said, “I am the gate for the sheep” (Jn.10:7). Jesus said, “I am the Resurrection and the Life” (Jn.11:25). Jesus said, “ I am He that lives, and was dead, and behold I am alive forever” (Rev.1:18). Jesus said, “...l am in the Father and the Father is in me” (Jn.14:10). Jesus said, “...I am the one I claim to be” (Jn.8:28). Jesus hadn’t been claiming to be God all along, please be honest about it.
Why did Jesus never say, “I am God”? And yet why did He say that He was a man (Jn.8:40)? Why did John, Paul or Peter never teach outright, that “Jesus is God”, as most preachers teach today? And yet why did they teach that He was and is a man (Jn.1:30,Ac.2:22,17:31,1Tim.2:5)? Why are we teaching differently than the Bible teaches about God and Jesus? Why did Jesus and the rest of the apostles fail to specifically expound upon such an important teaching as the ‘Trinity’? The real question should be, “Why do so many of us remain content to believe and even teach these things when the Bible doesn’t?” Jesus asks us today, even as He asked His disciples then, “WHO DO YOU SAY I AM?” (Mt. 16:15). Notice that, “You are God!”, “…God in the flesh!”, “…God the Son!” The second member of the Blessed Holy Trinity!“ was not the correct answer (Mt.16:16). Notice please, that in John 8:58, when Jesus said, “I AM”, the context was clear. Jesus had just told the Jews that HIS FATHER WAS THE ONE WHOM THEY CLAIMED WAS THEIR GOD! THE GOD OF JESUS, THE GOD JESUS PREACHED AND REVEALED, WAS NEVER A TRIUNE GOD, BUT ONE GOD, HIS FATHER! He said, “MY FATHER, WHOM YOU CLAIM AS YOUR GOD…” (Jn. 8:54) Right before this He stated, “I CAME FROM GOD”, and, “HE SENT ME” (Jn. 8:42). BY UNDERSTANDING EACH VERSE IN THE CONTEXT OF THE REST OF THE BIBLE WE CAN LEARN THE TRUTH, ESPECIALLY IN THE PRECEDING CONTEXT OF ANY CONTROVERSIAL VERSE. In the preceding verses Jesus said, “…I AM the one I claim to be…I DO NOTHING ON MY OWN…THE ONE WHO SENT ME IS WITH ME” (Jn. 8:28) AGAIN, THE CONTEXT OF HIS SAYING ‘I AM’ IS HIS SAYING THAT HE DID NOTHING ON HIS OWN, AND THAT HE WAS SENT. IF “I AM” MEANT JESUS WAS CLAIMING TO BE ABSOLUTE GOD, YAHWEH, IN ANY DEGREE, THEN HE WOULD NEVER HAVE TO REFRAIN FROM DOING ANYTHING HE WANTED, BECAUSE THAT IS AN IMMUTABLE (UNCHANGING) ASPECT OF GOD. GOD CAN AT NO TIME EVER BE UNABLE TO DO HIS OWN WILL! AND MY GOD HAS NEVER BEEN SENT ANYWHERE. JESUS SAID 20 TIMES IN JOHN CHAPTERS 5-10 (THE ESSENCE) THAT GOD SENT HIM. JESUS IS NOT LITERALLY GOD!
Chapter 17) DID GOD DIE?
Much of the controversy of this issue surrounds whether or not Jesus is fully, literally and absolutely God in any form. God’s form is always the same, He is an invisible spirit (Jn.4:24, Col.1:15, 1Tim.1:17, Heb.11:27), so a complete man cannot possibly be ‘fully God’. Of course, Jesus is fully and literally and absolutely God in the proper perspective, as a lesser God than THE God, as the Son of God who became man, who has a God and Father. As I've already written, it depends on your definition of the term 'God', for the Bible doesn't use the word 'God' with the same meaning every time. The God of the Bible says that He is not a man, but Jesus was clearly a man. Jesus said that God is a spirit, but then Jesus said of Himself that a spirit doesn’t have flesh and bones as He had (Lk.24:39). The one true God says that He has no God nor father before Him, but Jesus claims to have both a God and a Father. God cannot be tempted nor die, but Jesus was tempted and died. IF YOU TRY TO SPLIT THE ONE JESUS UP INTO SUPPOSEDLY BEING BOTH GOD AND MAN TO TRY TO PROVE THAT HE IS 'FULLY GOD', THEN WHO DIED ON THE CROSS? WAS IT THE ONE PERSON, THE MAN JESUS WHO DIED FOR US, or was it a body, a human nature, or did God really die? The man who died for me is called ’God’ by His God, (Heb.1:8,9), and He is the same glorious being that laid the foundations of the earth and created the universe with His very own hands (vs.10). The man who died for me was and still is the Son of God. Is your savior a body, or only the flesh half of Jesus? If you think your savior is God who died for you, I implore you to make sure you have the real savior (2Pt.1:10,2Cor.11:4).
The Bible teaches that there is only one Lord, this same man Jesus (Acts.2:22w/36,1Cor.8:6,Eph.4:5), and that He pre-existed with God, being uniquely and directly born of God. God sent Him to be born of a woman at the right time (Gal.4:4). The eternal gospel, the Scriptures, the apostles and the Holy Spirit all testify that God sent His Son to this earth as a man who was God's Servant. But we now teach that God came in a body, 'God in the flesh', and that God manifest in the flesh died. If Jesus was truly God in a body, then He would not be truly man. This sweeping error that Jesus is fully God, along with it's accompanying (unscriptural) 'God in the flesh' type phrases, are so universally accepted that most will, at least at first, immediately reject some of these truths because of the initial shock to their deeply held beliefs. I will demonstrate, with what is obviously incomplete yet I believe accurate proof, how a very few mistranslations have bolstered these errors.
Chapter 18) MORE PROOF JESUS WAS AND IS A MAN
Notice we never find one time where the Bible says something like, "Jesus is God", "Jesus is fully God and fully man", "...the man who is also God", "...the God-man Jesus", "God in the flesh" (except in one addition to some mostly Byzantine manuscripts, all after 800 AD), "O God who has no God", “the God who became man and then became God again“, “God the Son the second member of the blessed holy Trinity”, etc. Instead the Bible says, “…me, a man who has told you the truth I heard from God“, "...the one man, Jesus Christ...", "...the man Christ Jesus", “by the man He has appointed“, "Jesus of Nazareth was a man accredited by God...", etc., all written about Jesus long after His ascension.
The Scriptures cannot be broken. Scripture must be allowed to correct our beliefs no matter what 'everyone' believes, or how unpopular the truth is. I have sadly found that we, as God's own people, very often do not care what the Bible says when it contradicts our beliefs. Just as God’s people throughout the history of Israel and the church, we too have developed a strong inclination to go right on believing what we want to believe with GREAT false certainty, regardless of what the Bible clearly says. Many Christians today, like the hypocrites who crucified Christ, and fueled by their own sin which they didn’t think would really ever hurt them too bad, easily rationalize the contradictions of clear Scripture. Many are trusting in the false teachings of the last days ear ticklers who tell us what we want to hear, never realizing they have apathetically chosen to be deceived. We will always reap what we plant. The very few scriptures that seem to say Jesus is very God are often desperately grasped, regardless of the obvious contradictions that consistent biblical integrity would demand, and usually without being willing to be informed if there are credible scholars who agree that it has been mistranslated, added to the Bible or misunderstood.
So then, even after Christ's ascension the apostles taught that He is still a man, God's Servant, God's Son, The Messiah whom God sent. And, they never taught that Jesus is fully God in any way, not once. Yes, there are versions of the Bible that have mistranslated a few verses to try to 'help' God out, to try to 'prove' the 'Trinity' and in honor of our Lord to prove that Jesus is literally God. I will address those scriptures, one at a time, very shortly.
Remember, I have already established the obvious fact that Jesus is not merely the ultimate 'superman'. He is not merely the highest form of ordinary man. He is truly God's unique, firstborn, only begotten Son, the beginning and firstborn of all creation (Rev.3:14,Col.1:15)., the spiritual man from heaven (1Cor.15:44-49) who FULLY SHARES EVERYTHING THAT GOD HAS! Now, still as God's exalted Servant and Lamb, but also much more than that, as God's Son whom He has made to be Lord and Messiah (Ac.2:36), He has been restored to His pre-incarnate DIVINE glory. NOW AS THE DEFINITIVE NEW MAN, HE IS LIKE GOD AGAIN, NOT ONLY IN THE ESSENCE OF HIS CHARACTER AND IDENTITY, AS HE HAD REMAINED AS A MAN OF FLESH, BUT NOW IN EVERY POSSIBLE WAY, AS AN AWESOME LIFE GIVING SPIRITUAL BEING OF AN EXCELLENCE, POWER, MAGNITUDE AND GLORY WE HAVE NEVER DREAMED POSSIBLE, THE SPIRITUAL MAN WHO IS LIKE GOD, RULING THE UNIVERSE AS LORD WITH ALL POWER! "And we shall be like him..!" (1Jn.3:2).
These attributes of Jesus are some of the reasons why God calls Jesus the 'God' that He truly is (Heb.1:8), BUT ONLY IN THE CONTEXT OF THE REALITY ATTRIBUTED TO HIM THROUGHOUT ALL Scripture, AS BEING GOD’S SON WHO BECAME MAN, WHO HAS ALWAYS HAD A FATHER AND A GOD, THAT MESSIAH IS CONTINUALLY CONFIRMED AS BEING. Some of these combined facts listed above are often misunderstood to confirm the artificially added, mistranslated and/or misunderstood scriptures which seem to indicate that Jesus is literally God.
Chapter 19) GOD IS NOT, NEVER HAS BEEN, NOR CAN HE EVER POSSIBLY BE A MAN
It is written, "FOR I AM GOD AND NOT MAN…" (Hos.11:9). And, “GOD IS NOT A MAN … NEITHER THE SON OF MAN…” (Num.23:19). YET JESUS IS A MAN, AND JESUS IS THE SON OF MAN. Again I remind the reader that our very Master teaches us that "the Scripture cannot be broken" (Jn.10:35). These two scriptures quoted above are as true now as they were during the days when Jesus lived here as a man of flesh. THE God absolutely cannot be fully man according to the holy Scriptures. Many know that the term 'Son of Man' refers to Messiah's humanity, but some actually teach that it is a term also denoting that He is God. I have just proved by the Word of God that God is not a man, nor can He ever be, but for many that will not be enough to change a made up mind or a stubborn heart. These scriptures would have been broken if Jesus was both literally God and literally man at the same time. He therefore could not have been, nor can He now be absolute God and man simultaneously. I believe that the only reason many Trinitarians teachers even include Christ's humanity into their teaching at all is because the Scriptures are so clear about it, even though that one fact by itself completely discredits their attempts to prove that He is 'fully God'. But because so many modern Christians are "ignorant about God" (1Cor.15:34), this crucial mistake goes almost completely unnoticed, to the "shame" of the church (1Cor.15:34) that is supposed to be the immovable repository of truth (1Tim.3:15).
God is not a man, nor can He be, by SHEER DEFINITION OF THE REALITIES represented by the two mutually exclusive terms, 'God' and 'man'. This is one reason why so many millions of Muslims are so easily able to disregard the message and claims of our modern Christianity, which ignorantly teaches that Jesus is 'fully God and fully man', or worse, that 'Jesus is God', period, without any accurate explanation of how He is God and also that He isn‘t literally God. Their religious understandings are influenced, to whatever degree, by the evolution of spiritual Ishmaelites, who are natural descendants of Abraham. They share a basic understanding with their Jewish cousins, that God cannot possibly become a real man of flesh who has a God and Father, much less be seen, tempted or die. And WE SHOULD KNOW BETTER. God said that He would use a ‘foolish nation’, a people devoid of an accurate innate understanding of God, to provoke Israel to jealousy and anger (Rom.10:19,Jn.4:22). That’s us, the seemingly ‘very successful’ predominantly Gentile church. It is as if we cannot understand that the carpenter cannot possibly become the table which he built. My emphasis is not upon God's inability to become a man because He somehow lacks the power to become whatever He wants to become. Rather, God cannot become a man for the same reason that He cannot lie, fail, steal, die, murder or be unfaithful. It is impossible for God to do these things because of the very attributes of His deity.
Yes, Jesus is the builder of all things with God. God formed all things through the one who came to the creation He fashioned as being the very wisdom and power of God, and this Son of God did become the Son of Man (Heb.3:3). We know that "...GOD CANNOT BE TEMPTED BY EVIL..." (Jms.1:13). Please note that this verse doesn't say that 'the Father' can't be tempted, but that God (with no exception given) cannot be tempted. Yet in stark contrast we know that JESUS "HAS BEEN TEMPTED IN EVERY WAY, JUST AS WE ARE..." (Heb.4:15). And, "Jesus was led by the Spirit into the desert to be tempted by the devil" (Mt.4:1).
We know that "NO ONE HAS EVER SEEN GOD..." (1Jn.4:12,Jn.1:18). “But WE SEE JESUS…“ (Heb.2:9). And please notice that this next verse again clearly demonstrates that Jesus cannot be God, who is clearly differentiated from Jesus, while confirming the truth that no one has ever seen nor can see God: "...the appearing of OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, WHICH GOD will bring about in HIS OWN time- GOD, THE BLESSED AND ONLY RULER, THE KING OF KINGS AND THE LORD OF LORDS, WHO ALONE (Trinity?) IS IMMORTAL AND WHO LIVES IN UNAPPROACHABLE LIGHT, WHOM NO ONE HAS SEEN OR CAN SEE” (1Tim.6:14-16).
We also know that GOD IS "INVISIBLE" (1Tim.1:17). But again in stark contrast, concerning Jesus, the Expression of Eternal Life Himself, it says: "WHICH WE HAVE LOOKED AT AND OUR HANDS HAVE TOUCHED... THE LIFE APPEARED; WE HAVE SEEN IT" (1Jn.1:1,2). God was invisible and lived in heaven in unapproachable light while Jesus was on earth, while He also lived in Christ by the Holy Spirit. It doesn’t say God appeared, but that the life appeared.
We know that "GOD...ALONE IS IMMORTAL" (1Tim.6:15,16). And the Scripture says, "Now unto the King Eternal, IMMORTAL, invisible, THE ONLY GOD..." (1Tim.1:17). However, the man JESUS DIED, and God raised Him from the dead. If God can die, then what kind of God is he really? He would not have much absolute assurance and certainty to give to us, in that case.
God says, "I AM YAHWEH, I DO NOT CHANGE" (Mal.3:6). It is completely impossible for God to change. Yet as the second and last Adam, Christ became a man who was also the Son of GOD. He had been “MADE” "a little lower than the angels" (Heb.2:7), and then "once MADE perfect" (Heb.5:9) "he BECAME... much better and more excellent than the angels" (Heb.1:4). He LEARNED obedience and WAS PERFECTED through His sufferings (Heb.5:8,9). Jesus "MADE HIMSELF NOTHING, TAKING THE VERY NATURE OF A SERVANT, AND BECAME LIKE HUMAN BEINGS" (Phil.2:7,Heb.2:17,Jn.1:14). And, "… He WAS TRANSFORMED before them" (Mt.17:2). Jesus also BECAME A CURSE for us (Gal.3:13). And, "GOD MADE HIM...TO BE SIN for us..." (2Cor.5:21). Also, Jesus died and became alive again. Then after His resurrection He was permanently restored to His former glory which He had with God before creation. The current reality is that Jesus will now never change (Heb.1:12). He is now "the same yesterday, today and forever" (Heb.13:8).
Chapter 20) GOD IS NOT AN ANGEL
If we use the same reasoning that most use today concerning the Biblical reasons they give while trying to teach that Jesus is literally God, we could also say that the Bible teaches that an angel is God. We could read in Genesis and Exodus where the Scriptures identify the Angel of the LORD so closely with God as to seem to call the Angel “God”. Does that mean that we should conclude that God is an angel? That would be a new and false teaching, just as the teachers of the deity of Christ have long ago introduced a new and foreign teaching based upon a misunderstanding about Christ and God. In Exodus chapter 3 we can see that the Angel of the LORD is seen by Moses, and that through this Angel of the LORD God reveals Himself to Moses, and speaks to Moses. This is where we see the pre-incarnate Christ, and how He reveals God to men and how He completely represents God, without literally being God Himself, even though the Bible seems to call Him God. Otherwise, it could not be said that no one has ever seen God at any time.
In Gen. 31:11-13, the Angel of God speaks to Jacob in a dream, and said, “I am the God of Bethel”. So this angel is God, if we jump to conclusions. But if we can understand how God reveals Himself through this Angel, and how this Angel represents God, we can understand how God has in these last days spoken “to us in (the person of a) Son” (Heb. 1:2 lit. Greek & Amp), and how “the Only Begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, he declared” God. (Jn.1:18) For confirmation, look at Gen. 32:24. Jacob wrestles with a man (Gen. 32:24). When the man saw that he did not prevail against Jacob, he dislocated Jacob’s thigh. The man asks Jacob his name, and then changes it. Then Jacob declared that he had seen God face to face. We could declare, based upon this information, that God is a man! And some could say, from this text, that Jacob was more powerful than God, in a similar way that some now teach that the Lord Jesus is completely equal to God! Later in Hos.12:4 the man whom Jacob wrestled with is called the Angel of the Lord! So we could choose to see seeming biblical proof that God is an angel and a man, if we want to jump to conclusions! You will be greatly benefited in your attempt to understand the issues about which I am writing to notice that these kinds of events recorded in the Old Testament were never distorted by any teachers in the Bible (so successfully as the Trinitarians have been) to try to disprove the fact that God is not man, as clearly believed by the Jews and recorded in Hosea 11:9 and Num. 23:19, or to teach that God is an angel.
Two out of the three times that the New Testament records God talking to men directly, He declares, "THIS IS MY SON...". God Himself has clearly borne witness to who Jesus is, and we ought to teach the same things that God has said. Yet we teach that Jesus is God, period. The Trinity doctrine teaches that Jesus is God the Son, co-equal with God the Father, the second member of the Triune God. Yet Jesus, the Holy Spirit, John the Baptist, Peter, John and Paul all testified the same as God: JESUS IS THE SON OF GOD. Yet we not only teach that Jesus is God in the ultimate sense, but we now use this error as THE (unscriptural) test of orthodoxy. In other words, you are not considered a real Christian if you do not believe in the 'Trinity', and that Jesus is fully God. As I will reference later, the very early church father Origen said that you cannot teach that Jesus is God, period, as if He were very God literally. So then, if Jesus is actually called 'God' in Scripture, and HE IS, then IT MUST BE UNDERSTOOD WITHIN THE CONTEXT OF WHO THE WHOLE OF SCRIPTURE SAYS HE IS. The man Jesus is called God, not as being THE God, nor as being 'God the Son', the second member of a Trinity, but as being God’s Son, who has a God and Father. Jesus, the expression and image of God, is like God. Therefore God, His God, calls Him 'God' (Heb.1:8,9) AFTER HIS ASCENSION BACK TO THE SAME DIVINE FORM AND GLORY HE SHARED WITH GOD as recorded in John 1:1 . “BUT ABOUT THE SON HE SAYS, your throne, O GOD, will last forever and ever…you have loved righteousness and hated wickedness, THEREFORE GOD, YOUR GOD, HAS SET YOU ABOVE YOUR COMPANIONS BY ANOINTING YOU…“(Heb.1:8,9) THIS 'GOD', THE SON, (in this proper context ‘God, the Son’ is technically correct) HAS A GOD whom He calls “My God” (Heb.1:9,Mt.27:46,Rev.3:12), “Father”, “Daddy” (Abba).
This one and only true God, Jesus’ God, is clearly identified, not as a Trinity, but as “the Father”, “the only true God“, “the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ” (1Pt.1:3, Heb.1:9, Rev.1:6, Eph.1:3, Jn.17:3,20:17). We're able to clearly confirm this in these and many other scriptures. Therefore Jesus cannot be literally God, for GOD HAS NO GOD before Him. Jesus Himself tells us that MEN HAVE BEEN APPROPRIATELY CALLED GODS in Scripture, so why shouldn’t He, while admittedly a man, be recognized in His divine identity as God’s very Son (Jn.10:33-38)? We also are becoming more and more like God in certain ways, culminating when we see Christ and become like Him (2Cor.3:18, Eph.5:1, Zech.12:8, 1Jn.3:2).
I will use an example to show that Jesus is God’s Son though not literally God. We can say that Joshua is Tom’s son, but if Joshua IS IN FACT Tom’s son, then we cannot accurately say that Joshua IS Tom without a really good explanation. To prove that Joshua is Tom, we could concoct an elaborate dual identity theory which could become believable if enough people agreed. Or we could hypothetically explain that Tom had legally placed his name upon Joshua at birth, so that Joshua’s middle name is ‘Thomas’. Since ‘Tom’ is part of Joshua’s legal name which he has since used, then technically Joshua is ‘Tom‘. But this would be true only to the degree in which he was in fact Tom, which in this case would only be in name, as Tom's son, 'Tom Junior'. So calling Joshua ‘Tom’ would be true in one sense, but Joshua is not literally Tom in the understood context. Of course, as God’s Son, Jesus is ‘God’ much more than only in name. He is called “God” by ‘The’ God. God placed His name and His Spirit on Jesus. Jesus fully reveals God’s name. He was just like God in every possible way before His incarnation. When He emptied Himself and became a man, the essence of His identity remained the same. As the ‘Logos' who became a man of flesh, the essence of Christ's person was of God, and the spirit and soul of the man Jesus Christ became like God in character, word and deed. This was accomplished through His conception by and infilling with the Holy Spirit. Now this awesome spiritual man from heaven is exalted to the ultimate degree, fully restored to the glory which He enjoyed with God before the world began (Jn.17:5), at God’s ‘right hand’. He is now, as the man from heaven who is now exalted as Lord, the Lamb and Son of God, again just like God in every possible way. God still fully indwells Christ, and Christ still fully dwells in the Father. When we see Jesus, we will see God, so that when Jesus appears, God will be appearing to us in the process.
Jesus fully represents God in every possible way. I will soon explain in more detail how these facts concerning Jesus, God’s Son, qualify Him to be called 'God', in the proper perspective, but first…let's back up and investigate!
Continued at chapters 21 - 37