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 is JESUS GOD? - What John & Paul say

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PostSubject: is JESUS GOD? - What John & Paul say   Tue Jun 17, 2008 12:06 pm


Evidence from the Fourth Gospel - What JOHN Says:

The Gospel of John was completed to its present form some seventy years after Jesus was raised up to heaven. This Gospel in its final form says one more thing about Jesus that was unknown from the previous three Gospels — that Jesus was the Word of God. John means that Jesus was God’s agent through whom God created everything else. This is often misunderstood to mean that Jesus was God Himself. But John was saying, as Paul had already said, that Jesus was God’s first creature. In the Book of Revelation in the Bible, we find that Jesus is,

“the beginning of God’s creation” (ch. 3, v. 14; see also I Corinthians 8:6 and Colossians 1:15).

Anyone who says that the Word of God is a person distinct from God must also admit that the Word was created, for the Word speaks in the Bible saying:

“Yahweh created me” (Proverbs ch. 8, v. 22).

This Gospel, nevertheless, clearly teaches that Jesus is not God. If it did not continue this teaching, then it would contradict the other three Gospels and also the letters of Paul from which it is clearly established that Jesus is not God.

We find here that Jesus was not co-equal with the Father, for Jesus said:

“The Father is greater than I” (John 14:28).

People forget this and they say that Jesus is equal to the Father. Whom should we believe — Jesus or the people?

Muslims and Christians agree that God is self-existent. That means that He does not derive his existence from anyone. Yet John tells us that Jesus’ existence is caused by the Father. Jesus says in this Gospel: “I live because of the Father” (John 6:57).
John tells us that Jesus did not have any authority of his own when he quotes Jesus as saying: “I can do nothing of my own authority” (John 5:30). This agrees with what we learn about Jesus from the other Gospels. In Mark, for example, we learn that Jesus performed miracles by a power which was not within his control. This is especially clear from an episode in which a woman is healed of her incurable bleeding. The woman came up behind him and touched his cloak; and she was immediately healed. But Jesus had no idea who touched him. Mark describes Jesus’s actions thus:

“At once Jesus realised that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched my clothes?” (Mark 5:30).

His disciples could not provide a satisfactory answer, so Mark tells us:

“Jesus kept looking around to see who had done it” (5:32).

This shows that the power that healed the woman was not within Jesus’s control. He knew that the power had gone out of him, but he did not know where it went. Some other intelligent being had to guide that power to the woman who needed to be healed. God was that intelligent being. It is no wonder, then, that in Acts of the Apostles we read that it was God who did the miracles through Jesus (Acts 2:22). God did extraordinary miracles through others too, but that does not make the others God (see Acts 19:11). Why, then, is Jesus taken for God?

Even when Jesus raised his friend Lazarus from the dead, he had to ask God to do it. Lazarus’ sister, Martha, knew this, for she said to Jesus:
“I know that even now God will give you whatever you ask” (John 11:22).

Martha knew that Jesus was not God, and John who reported this with approval knew it also.

Jesus had a God, for when he was about to ascend to heaven, he said:

“I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God” (John 20:17).

John was sure that no one had seen God, although he knew that many people had seen Jesus (see John 1:18 and 1 John 4:12). In fact Jesus himself told the crowds, that they have never seen the Father, nor have they heard the Father’s voice (John 5:37). Notice that if Jesus was the Father, his statement here would be false.

Who is the only God in John’s Gospel? The Father only. Jesus testified to this when he declared that the God of the Jews is the Father (John 8:54). And the God of the Jews is no other than Yahweh who declared that he is the only God. Jesus too confirmed that the Father alone is the only true God (see John 17:1-3). And Jesus said to his enemies: “You are determined to kill me, a man who has told you the truth that I heard from God” (John 8:40).
According to John, therefore, Jesus was not God, and nothing John wrote should be taken as proof that he was — unless one wishes to disagree with John.
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PostSubject: Paul's Believe   Tue Jun 17, 2008 12:10 pm


Paul Believed That Jesus is not God

Many people use Paul’s writings as proof that Jesus is God. But this is not fair to Paul, because Paul clearly believed that Jesus is not God.
In his first letter to Timothy, Paul wrote:

“I charge you in the sight of God, and Christ Jesus, and the elect angels, to keep these instructions . . ." (ch. 5, v. 21).

It is clear from this that the title God applies not to Christ Jesus, but to someone else. In the following chapter, he again differentiates between God and Jesus when he says:

“In the sight of God who gives life to everything, and of Christ Jesus . . ." (ch. 6, v. 13).
Paul then went on to speak of

“the second appearance of our Lord Jesus Christ which God will bring about in his own time" (vv. 14-15).

Again, the title God is deliberately turned away from Jesus.
Incidentally, many people think that when Jesus is called “Lord” in the Bible that means “God”. But in the Bible this title means master or teacher, and it can be used for addressing humans (see 1 Peter ch. 3, v. 6).
What is more important, however, it to notice what Paul says next, for this will demolish any supposition that Paul took Jesus for God. What he says about God in the following passage clearly shows that Jesus is not God. Paul says:

“God the blessed and only Ruler, the King of kings and the Lord of lords, who alone is immortal and who lives in unapproachable light, whom no one has seen or can see” (1 Timothy ch. 6, vv. 15-16).

Paul says that God alone is immortal. Immortal means he does not die. Check any dictionary. Now, anyone who believes that Jesus died cannot believe that Jesus is God. Such a belief would contradict what Paul said here. Furthermore, to say that God died is a blasphemy against God. Who would run the world if God died? Paul believed that God does not die.
Paul also said in that passage that God dwells in unapproachable light — that no one has seen God or can see him. Paul knew that many thousands of people had seen Jesus. Yet Paul can say that no one has seen God because Paul was sure that Jesus is not God.
This is why Paul went about teaching not that Jesus was God, but that he was God’s Messiah (see Acts 9:22; 16:3; 18:5).
When he was in Athens, Paul spoke of God as “the God who made the world and everything in it,” then he identified Jesus as “the man whom God appointed” (Acts 17:24-31).
Clearly, for Paul, Jesus was not God, and he would be shocked to see his writings used for proving the opposite of what he believed.
Paul even testified in court saying:

“I admit that I worship the God of our fathers . . . ” (Acts 24:14).

And Jesus is the Servant of that God, for we read in Acts,

“The God of our fathers has glorified his servant Jesus” (ch. 3, v. 13).

For Paul, the Father alone is God. Paul said that there is “one God and Father of all” (Ephesians ch. 4, v. 6). Paul said again,

“For us there is but one God, the Father . . . and one Lord, Jesus Christ” (1 Corinthians 8:6).
Paul’s letter to the Philippians ch. 2, vv. 6-11 is often quoted as proof that Jesus is God. But the very passage shows that Jesus is not God. This passage has to agree with Isaiah 45:22-24 where God (Yahweh) said that every knee should bow to Yahweh, and every tongue should confess that righteousness and strength are in Yahweh alone. Paul was aware of this passage, for he quoted it in Romans 14:11. Knowing this, Paul declared,

“I kneel before the Father” (Ephesians 3:14).
The letter to the Hebrews ( ch. 1, v. 6) says that the angels of God should worship the Son. But this passage depends on Deuteronomy, ch. 32, v. 43, in the Septuagint version of the Old Testament. This phrase cannot be found in the Old Testament used by Christians today, and the Septuagint version is no longer considered valid by Christians. However, even the Septuagint version, does not say worship the Son. It says let the Angels of God worship God (Yahweh).
The Bible insists that Yahweh alone is to be worshipped. In Deuteronomy ch .6, v. 16, we read,

“Worship Yahweh your God and serve him only.”

Jesus, on whom be peace, believed in this, for he also stressed it in Luke ch. 4, v. 8. And Jesus too fell on his face and worshipped God (see Matthew 26:39).
Paul knew that Jesus worshipped God (see Hebrews 5:7), and Paul taught that Jesus will remain forever subservient to God (see 1 Corinthians, ch. 15, v. 28).
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