Is Jesus God?
Are you just as human as your father? So why would you think that God's only begotten Son would be any less God than His Father?
Many have come and claimed to know the way to God. Did Jesus do the same, or does the evidence show that Jesus actually made the claim that he is God, come in the flesh to save mankind? This is the most important question in our investigation.
Organizations like the Jehovah’s Witness, secular media, and popular fictional stories like The Da Vinci Code will try to tell you that Jesus is not God. Some will insist that Jesus was made into God by men in the third century at the Council of Nicea. Because the vast majority of people have never examined the evidence themselves, many just accept these statements. The question is what does the evidence reveal about Jesus identity. Here we will examine who Jesus himself claimed to be in the Scriptures. We will also examine numerous other scriptures and what the early Church fathers believed and taught about Jesus’ identity hundreds of years prior to the Council of Nicea. (More information on Nicea: http://www.gotquestions.org/council-of-Nicea.html)
Jesus Had to Walk a Fine Line
Let me ask you a question. What would Jesus have needed to do to prove to those around him beyond all possible doubt that he was God? Hover in the sky and command the thunder and the lightning? Raise a bunch of people from their graves and have them all stumble into Jerusalem in a mob? What would it take to convince (beyond all possible doubt) every single person (including you) that he is God?
Now if every person at the time of Jesus’ existence on this earth believed beyond all possible doubt that He was God, would they have crucified him? Personally, I think the obvious answer is no. So the point here is that Jesus could not have walked around with a Big G on his shirt, proving to everyone he was God come in the flesh. If he had, the crucifixion and the payment for the sins of the world, as the Bible teaches, would have never taken place. The truth is that Jesus had to walk a fine line so that they would crucify him. That said, the overwhelming evidence Jesus is God is there, for all who are willing to investigate.
Who Did Jesus Claim to be in Scripture?
1. Jesus Claimed to be God.
In the Old Testament, God calls Himself, “I Am.” In the New Testament, Jesus uses the same name; the Jews realized what He was saying and picked up rocks to stone Him because they knew He was claiming to be God. The Pharisee’s crucified Jesus for His claim to be God.
“God said to Moses, ‘I AM WHO I AM.’ And He said, ‘Say this to the people of Israel, I AM has sent me to you’” (Exodus 3:14 NIV).
“Jesus said to them, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I Am,’ so they picked up stones to throw at him, but Jesus hid himself and went out of the temple” (John 8:58-59).
2. Jesus Claimed to be the Object of Prayer.
Jesus claimed to be the mediator between God and man, thus He was claiming to be God. How would you respond if I asked you to pray in my name? “Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son” (John 14:13).
3. Jesus Claimed to Forgive Sins.
We can all forgive someone for sinning against us personally. But of the numerous times Jesus forgave sins, He had just met the people, so they had not sinned against Him personally. He was forgiving their sins against God; something only God can do.
“‘Son, your sins are forgiven.’ Now some of the scribes were sitting there, questioning in their hearts, ‘Why does this man speak like that? He is blaspheming! Who can forgive sins but God alone?’” (Mark 2:5-7, emphasis added).
4. Jesus Claimed to be Worthy of Honor Due God.
“The Father judges no one, but has given all judgment to the Son, that all may honor the Son, just as they honor the Father. Whoever does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent him” (John 5: 22-23).
5. Jesus Claimed to be the Messiah.
“The woman said to him, ‘I know that Messiah is coming (he who is called Christ). When he comes, he will tell us all things’ Jesus said to her, ‘I who speak to you am he’” (John 4:25-26).
“Caiaphas asks Jesus, ‘Are you the Christ, the Son of the Blessed?’ And Jesus said, ‘I am, and you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of Power, and coming with the clouds of heaven’” (Mark 14:61-62).
6. Jesus Claimed to be Equal in Authority with God.
“Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away” (Matthew 24:35).
And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me” (Matthew 28:18).
7. Jesus Claimed to be Yahweh (LORD)
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