Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Is Jesus God

Biblegems #111
Question: It is clear that Jesus was equal in position to God—but chose to be the lesser. Where do we get the concept that Jesus is God, in the personal sense? They rightly seem to be two different personal entities: What passages show that God and Jesus are “the same?”

This is a great question that gets at the very nature of the Trinity. At issue are two aspects of Jesus’ relationship to God: His personhood, and His nature.

God Is One
One of the most fundamental teachings of Scripture is that God is One:
         Deut. 6:4 Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one.
         Rom. 3:30 …there is only one God, who will justify the circumcised by faith and the uncircumcised through that same faith.

Jesus Is God
Even though God is one, the Gospel of John opens with a declaration that Jesus is God:
         John 1:1, 14 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. …The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

The Beauty of this passage is that Jesus, the Word, is declared to be God, and yet He is also declared to be with God.

In Revelation 1:8 and 21:6 God the Father calls Himself “the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end;” yet in Revelation 22:13 Jesus says of Himself that He is the “Alpha and the Omega, the First and the last the Beginning and the End.” In other words, He is God.

Three Persons—One God
The Bible teaches that God the Father, God the Spirit and God the Son are each distinct personalities within the one God. Consider the following passage:
         Jesus said, “I and the Father are one” (Jn. 10:30). Here Jesus identifies Himself as God, but also as a distinct person (“I”) in relation to “the Father.” Jesus not only saw no contradiction here, but He emphasized the truth that God by His very nature is a plurality of persons. In His nature, Jesus is one with God. This is precisely what Paul teaches in Philippians:
         Phil. 2:5-7 Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.

Notice that Jesus is described here as being one with God in His “nature,” while on the other hand He is described as acting as an individual person who “made himself nothing.”

God is a communal being. He has conversation, love and fellowship within Himself. We see this in action in passages like…
         Gen. 1:26 Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, in our likeness…
         Who is God speaking to? God the Father is conversing with the other two persons of the Trinity—the Holy Spirit and the Son—who share His very nature as God.

God is unique. He is complete in Himself. There is one God, who is infinitely perfect, existing eternally in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Deuteronomy 6:4, Matthew 5:48, Matthew 28:19).

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