When I posted the blog yesterday about Jesus not being God, I expected some blow-back, given how much in error most Christians are these days. I was sadly not disappointed.
Not to shrink from battle, I decided to post another blog on the same topic, but to let scripture (specifically, God) do most of the talking.
So here we go.
In Matthew 16:13-17, Jesus famously asks his disciples who they think he is. Throughout much of the Gospels, Jesus refers to himself as “son of man”, which is to say, a prophet. But in this passage, Jesus outright asks his followers who they and others say he is. He is not surprised by their initial responses, which peg him as John the Baptist or one of the prophets of the Old Testament come back to life. And then Peter (and here’s my point) – Peter speaks up and says: “Thou art the Christ, the son of the Living God.” This response Jesus hangs his hat on, telling Peter and the other disciples that Peter could only have known this by divine revelation straight from God. He says:
“Blessed art thou, Simon Bar-jona: For flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.”
The same interchange occurs in Mark 8:27-30, with Jesus casually asking his disciples who they think he might be, and Peter coming right out and saying he is the Christ.
In both instances, Jesus cautions them not to tell anyone about this revelation, knowing the problems it will cause with the religious leadership in Israel. After his death and resurrection, however, Jesus tells them to tell everyone he is the Christ. Note that he does not tell them to tell everyone that his is God, but that he is the long-awaited Messiah. Not at any point in scripture does Jesus tell his disciples that he is God.
A few passages later in Matthew 17:5, we find God referring to Jesus as his Son. This occurs during the so-called transfiguration, when Jesus’ face (like Moses’ face when he was talking with God on the mountain) “did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light”. During this occurrence, Jesus was talking with Moses and Elias when God’s voice stated: “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased: hear ye him.” We find the same affirmation of Jesus being God’s Son (that is, the Messiah) in Mark 9:7 and in Luke 9:35.
Further on in the Gospels, Peter mentions God’s revelation of Jesus being his Son in 2 Peter 1:17-18, where he states: “For [Jesus] received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. And this voice which came from heaven we heard when we were with [Jesus] on the holy mount.”
Now, unless Jesus is a ventriloquist and was able to throw his voice as if it were seemingly coming from Heaven, we can assume that God the Father in Heaven, who spoke the words, was a very separate being from Jesus, the Son of God, who was standing on the mountain with the glorified prophets and a few of his human disciples. God also refers to Jesus as his Son during his baptism in the River Jordan in all four gospels (Matthew 3:17, Mark 1:11, Luke 3:22, John 1:33-34).
I’m not asking you to accept my authority in stating that Jesus is not God, but you would do well to accept the authority of God and that of his Son, Jesus the Christ, as stated in scripture. In Zechariah 4:6, we read: “Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the Lord of hosts.” Jesus was not God, but he was, as scripture tells us, filled with God’s Spirit, not in small measure but in full. To some, this fullness of God’s Spirit in Jesus may have made him appear as if he were the very God (through the supernatural abilities God’s Spirit gave him), but Jesus was very much the Son of God (that is, the Messiah), which scripture tells us was confirmed by God on at least two occasions (at the River Jordan and during the transfiguration) as well as by Jesus during his “Who do you think I am” Q&A with his disciples.
It is impossible to read the Bible accurately through the lens of believing that Jesus is God. It simply does not make any sense. For instance, all of Paul’s letters begin with an exaltation of God and a separate thanksgiving to Jesus. If God and Jesus were one and the same, why would Paul speak of them as separate beings? Is Paul in error?
Being a born-again believer means having God’s Spirit with you at all times. This enables you to read and understand scripture through the lens of God’s Spirit, not through the lens of an unbeliever. The lie of Jesus being God was planted not by a born-again believer but by unbelievers who had a specific and quite diabolical agenda. That plant has now taken root and is flourishing. We will see the diabolical agenda fully unfold as we near the time of the end, when Lucifer possesses the “man of perdition”, who will sit as God on his throne in the third temple and demand to be worshiped as God. Islamic prophecy has Jesus returning to rule from a temple, and a prominent Jewish rabbi recently named Jesus as the long-awaited Jewish Messiah. Even from these few points, you can see how the “Jesus is God” narrative dovetails nicely with the Islamic and Judaic prophecies. But what these people in error call the Messiah, we know to be the anti-Christ, the very opposite of Jesus.
Do not be deceived: Jesus is not God. God called Jesus his Son, and Jesus openly acknowledged to his disciples that he was God’s Son and that the Father was greater than him. If you don’t want to believe me, at least believe God’s and Jesus’ own words.