ANSWERING SUPPOSED PROOFTEXTS AGAINST THE DEITY OF CHRIST
This article (for which there was not enough space in the tract) deals with commonly cited Bible verses which heretics cite in an attempt to disprove the fact that Jesus Christ is God. [Last updated 11-26-2020.]
John 14:28 “Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I.”
Jesus said that while on earth, before the crucifixion, in His weak human body. Jesus temporarily weakened Himself while on earth so He could suffer and die.
Philippians 2:5-8 “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God [the Father]: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.”
In John 17:5, Jesus said “And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.”
To say “greater than” does not mean “better than.” It’s not about quality. It’s about position. Joseph typified Jesus in many ways, and in Genesis 41:40, Pharaoh said to Joseph, “Thou shalt be over my house, and according unto thy word shall all my people be ruled: only in the throne will I be greater than thou.”
When you cite the fact that “the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost…are one” (1 John 5:7) and Jesus said “I and my Father are one” (John 10:30), some heretics will say that them being “one” doesn’t prove Jesus is God, because Jesus prayed that His disciples would also be “one” with Him and the Father:
John 17:20 “Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word;
21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.
22 And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one:
23 I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.”
Read that closely. It does NOT say believers will be one “with” Jesus and the Father. He was saying that believers will be one with EACH OTHER, and (secondarily) they will be “in” Jesus and the Father only by way of being in Christ’s body. 1 Corinthians 12:27 “Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.” Galatians 3:28 “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.” The fact that there are no racial or gender distinctions in the body of Christ shows that, spiritually, all believers are the same being. Since Jesus compared the oneness of the believers with the oneness of Himself and the Father, we know Jesus and the Father are the same being. So when John 17:20-23 is cross-referenced with Galatians 3:28, it actually proves the opposite of what the heretics say!
Hence, right after Jesus said “I and my Father are one” (John 10:30), “the Jews took up stones again to stone him” and said “we stone thee…for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God” (John 10:31-33). In the verses after that, Jesus did not deny it! If Jesus is not God, why didn’t He say “You misunderstood me – I didn’t mean that I am God”?
John 20:17 “Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.”
Saying that something is “yours” doesn’t inherently make it separate from you. I am my own doctor, my own lawyer, and my own chef. Jesus is His own God. He and God the Father are one. Hence, the Father called Jesus “God” in Hebrews 1:8.
MATTHEW 27:46 / MARK 15:34
Matthew 27:46 “And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”
Mark 15:34 “And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being interpreted, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”
(See the comments on John 20:17.) When Jesus said “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?“, He was quoting a Psalm of David (Psalm 22) in which are several prophecies about what was happening while He was on the cross. He may have been only quoting the verse to draw attention to the fact that He was fulfilling prophecy. If He was actually asking the question He quoted, it wasn’t because He didn’t know the answer. It was probably the moment that the Father “made him to be sin for us” (2 Corinthians 5:21). The Father “forsook” Jesus’ body because Jesus “his own self bare our sins in his own body” on the cross (1 Peter 2:24).
Revelation 3:14 “And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;”
Heretics claim that verse teaches that “Jesus was a created being”! The word “creation” does NOT always mean “that which is created.” Depending on the context, “creation” can also mean “the act of creating,” as in Romans 1:20 (“For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:“).
For Jesus to call Himself “the beginning of the creation of God” was to say He was the God doing the creating in the beginning.
John 1:1-10 “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God… All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made… the world was made by him…”