Last updated here 040616
Does The Bible Really Teach That Jesus Is God?
by Dr. Greg J. Dixon (040516)
The final name of the one true God: Mt. 28:19 “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:” The word is in the singular, the “name,” not names. Father, Son, and Holy Spirit is the final name of the one true God. It affirms: (1) That God is one. (2) That He subsists in a personality which is threefold, indicated by relationship as Father and Son; by a mode of being as Spirit; and by the different parts taken by the Godhead in manifestation and in the work of redemption, e.g. Joh 3:5-6, (Spirit), Joh 3:16-17 (Father and Son). In Mt 3:16-17; Mr 1:10-11; Lu 3:21-22 the three persons are in manifestation together. (3) The conjunction in one name of the Three affirms equality and oneness of substance. See O.T. Names of God: The next reference, Mal 3:18, provides a Summary
Genesis 2:7 “And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.”
“Summary of the OT revelation of deity. N1 p983. “God is revealed in the OT (1) through his names as follows:
Class English form Hebrew equivalent
God El, Elah, or Elohim (Gen. 1.1, note
Primary LORD Jehovah (Gen.2.4, note)
Lord Adon or Adonai (Gen. 15.2, note)
Almighty God El Shaddai (Gen. 17.1 note)
Compound (with Most High, or El Elyon (Gen. 14.18, note)
El = God) most high god
Everlasting God El Olam (Gen. 21.33, note)
Compound (with LORD God Jehovah Elohim (Gen. 2.7, note)
Jehovah = LORD Lord God Adonai Jehovah (Gen. 15.2, note)
LORD of hosts Jehovah Sabaoth (1 Sam. 1.3, note)
“The trinity is suggested by the three times repeated groups of threes. This is not an arbitrary arrangement, but inherent in the OT itself.
“This revelation of God by His names is invariably made in connection with some particular need of His people, and there can be no need of man to which these names do not answer as showing that man’s true resource is in God. Even human failure and sin but evoke new and fuller revelations of the divine fullness.
“(2) The OT Scriptures reveal the existence of a Supreme Being, the Creator of the universe and of man, the Source of all life and of all intelligence, who is to be worshipped and served by men and angels. This Supreme Being is One, but, in some sense not fully revealed in the OT, is a unity in plurality. This is shown by the name, Elohim, by the use of the plural pronoun in the interrelation of Deity as evidenced in Gen. 1.26; 3.22; Psa. 110.1; and Isa. 6.8. That this plurality is really a Trinity is intimated in the three primary names of Deity, and in the threefold ascription of the Seraphim in Isa. 6.3. That the interrelation of Deity is that of Father and son is directly asserted in Psa. 2.7 (with Heb. 1.5); and the Spirit is distinctly recognized in His personality, and to Him are ascribed all the divine attributes (e.g. Gen. 1.2; Num. 11.25; 24.2; Jud. 3.10; 6.34; 11.29; 13.25; 14.6, 9; 15.14; 2 Sam. 23.2; Job 26.13; 33.4; Psa. 106.33; 139.7; Isa. 40.7; 59.19; 63.10. See Mal. 2.15, note).
“(3) The future incarnation is intimated in the theophanies, or appearances of God in human form (e.g. Gen. 18.1, 13, 17-22; 32.24-30), and distinctly predicted in the promises connected with redemption (e.g. Gen. 3.15) and with the Davidic Covenant (e.g. Isa. 7.13, 14; 9.6, 7; Jer. 23.5, 6).
The revelation of Deity in the NT so illuminates that of the OT that the latter is seen to be, from Genesis to Malachi, the foreshadowing of the coming incarnation of God in Jesus the Christ. In promise, covenant, type, and prophecy, the OT points forward to Him.
“(4)The revelation of God to man is one of authority and redemption. He requires righteousness from man but saves the unrighteous through sacrifice; and in His redemptive dealings with man all the divine persons and attributes are brought into manifestation. The OT reveals the justice of God equally with His mercy, but never in opposition to His mercy. The flood, e.g., was an unspeakable mercy to unborn generations. From Genesis to Malachi He is revealed as the seeking God who has no pleasure in the death of the wicked, and who heaps up before the sinner every possible motive to persuade to faith and obedience.
“(5) In the experience of the OT men of faith their God inspires reverence but never slavish fear; and they exhaust the resources of language to express their love and adoration in view of His lovingkindness and tender mercy. This adoring love of His saints is the triumphant answer to those who pretend to find the OT revelation of God cruel and repellent. It is in harmony, not contrast, with the NT revelation of God in Christ.
“(6) those passages which attribute to God bodily parts and human emotions (e.g. Ex. 33.11, 20; oDeut. 29.20; 2 Chr. 16.9; Gen 6.6, 7; Jer. 15.6) are metaphorical and mean that in the infinite being of God exists that which answers to these things—eyes, a hand, feet, etc.; and the jealousy and anger attributed to Him are the emotions of perfect Love in view of the havoc of sin.
“(7) In the OT revelation there is a true sense in which, wholly apart from sin or infirmity, God is like His creature man (Gen.1.27), and the supreme and perfect revelation of God, toward which the OT points, is a revelation in and through a perfect Man.”
See N1 p3 for more info on the names of God.
N2 p24 to Gen. 2.15. “‘Lord GOD’(Heb. Adonai Jehovah). When used distinctively this compound name, while gathering into one the special meanings of each (Gen. 1.1, note; 15.2, note) will be found to emphasize the Adonai rather than the Jehovah character of Deity. (The following passages may suffice to illustrate this: Gen. 15.2, 8; Deut. 3.24; 9.26; Josh. 7.7; Jud. 6.22; 16.28; 2 Sam. 7.18-20, 28, 29; 1 Ki. 2.26; Psa. 69.6; 71.5; Isa. 7.7). See, for other names of Deity: Gen. 1.1, note; 2.4, note; 2.7; 14.8 note; 15.2, note; 17.1, note; 21.33, note; 1 Sam. 1.3.
N2 to Ps. 8.5, p602. “Psalms 8:5 For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour.” (In Psa 2. Christ was presented as Jehovah’s Son and King, rejected and crucified but yet to reign in Zion. In Psa 8., while His deity is fully recognized (Ps 8:1), Psa. 110 with Mt 22:41-46 He is seen as Son of man Ps 8:4-6 who, “made for a little while lower than the angels, ” is to have dominion over the redeemed creation Heb 2:6-11. The authority here is racial and Adamic, rather than purely divine as in Psa 2., or Davidic as in Psa 89. That which the first man lost, the second man and “last Adam” more than regained. Heb 2:6-11 in connection with Psa. 8., and Ro 8:17-21 show that the “many sons” whom He is bringing to glory, are joint heirs with Him in both the royal right of Psa. 2. and the human right of Heb. 2. See Psa. 16., next in order of the Messianic Psalms. Margin: angel Cmt. on Heb 1:4).
N1 to Psm. 110, p654. “The importance of Psalm 110 is attested by the remarkable prominence given to it in the New Testament. (1) It affirms the deity of Jesus, thus answering those who deny the full divine meaning of his N.T. title of ‘Lord’ (v. 1; Mt. 22.41-45; Mk. 12.35-37; Lk 20.41-44; Acts 2.34, 35; Heb. 1.13, 10.12, 13). (2) This Psalm announces the eternal priesthood of Messiah—one of the most important statements of Scripture (v. 4; Gen. 14.18, note; Heb. 5.6, note; 7.1-28; 1 Tim. 2.5, 6; John 14.6). (3) Historically, the Psalm begins with the ascension of Christ (v. 1; John 20.17; Acts 7.56; Rev. 3.21). (4) Prophetically, the Psalm looks on (a) to the time when Christ will appear as the rod of Jehovah’s strength, the Deliverer out of Zion (Rom. 11.25-27), and the conversion of Israel (v.3; Joel 2.27; Zech. 13.9. See Deut. 30.1-9, note); and (b) to the judgment upon the Gentile powers which precedes the setting up of the kingdom (vs. 5, 6; Joel 3.19-17; Zech. 14.1-4; Rev. 19.11-21) See ‘Armageddon’ (Rev. 16.14; 19.17, note); ‘Israel’ (Gen. 12.2, 3; Rom. 11.26, note); ‘Kingdom’ (Zech. 12.8, note; 1 Cor. 15.28, note). See Psa. 2, note, first, and Psa. 118, last in order of the Messianic Psalms.”
Isa. 7 “14 Therefore Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel [God with us].” 9 “6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace. 7 Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth ever for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.”
N2 & 3 p994 to Mt. 1.16: “And Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ.” (2 The changed expression here is important. It is no longer, “who begat,” but, “Mary, of whom was born Jesus.” Jesus was not begotten of natural generation.” “3 And Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ.” “Christ (Christos=anointed), the Greek form of the Hebrew ‘Messiah’ Da 9:25-26 is the official name of our Lord, as Jesus is his human name Lu 1:31; 2:21. The name, or title, ‘Christ’ connects Him with the entire O.T. foreview Cmt. on Zec 12:8 of a coming prophet De 18:15-19, Priest Ps 110:4 and king 2Sa 7:7-10. As these were typically anointed with oil 1Ki 19:16; Ex 29:7; 1Sa 16:13 so Jesus was anointed with the Holy Spirit Mt 3:16; Mr 1:10-11; Lu 3:21-22; Joh 1:32-33 thus becoming officially “the Christ.)
N1 to Mt. 2.2 “Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.” (“The King” is one of the divine titles Ps 10:16 and so used in the worship of the Church 1Ti 1:17 but Christ is never called “King of the Church.” He is “King of the Jews” Mt 2:2 and Lord and “Head of the Church” Eph 1:22-23 Cmt. on Mt 16:18 Cmt. on Heb 12:23 Mt 16:18; Heb 12:23.)
N3 p995 to Mt. 2.15 “And was there until the death of Herod: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Out of Egypt have I called my son.” (The words quoted are in Ho 11:1 and the passage illustrates the truth that prophetic utterances often have a latent and deeper meaning than at first appears. Israel, nationally, was a “Song 1:1” Ex 4:22 but Christ was the greater “Song 1:1” Ro 9:4-5; Isa 41:8; 42:1-4; 52:13-14 where the servant-nation and the Servant-Son are both in view.)
Adam: N3 p 997 to Mt. 4.1 “Matthew 4:1 Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.” (The temptation of Christ, the “last Adam” 1Co 15:45 is best understood when contrasted with that of the “first man Adam.” Adam was tempted in his place of lord of creation, a lordship with but one reservation, the knowledge of good and evil Ge 1:26; 2:16-17. Through the woman he was tempted to add that also to his dominion. Falling, he lost all. But Christ had taken the place of a lowly Servant, acting only from and in obedience to the Father. Php 2:5-8; Joh 5:19; 6:57; 8:28,54 Cmt. on Isa 41:8 that He might redeem a fallen race and a creation under the curse Ge 3:17-19; Ro 8:19-23. Satan’s one object in the threefold temptation was to induce Christ to act from Himself, in independency of His Father. The first two temptations were a challenge to Christ from the god of this world to prove Himself indeed the Son of God (Mt 4:3,6). The third was the offer of the usurping prince of this world to divest himself of that which rightfully belonged to Christ as Son of man and Son of David, on the condition that He accept the sceptre on Satan’s world-principles (cf. Joh 18:36). Cmt. on Re 13:8. Christ defeated Satan by a means open to His humblest follower, the intelligent use of the word of God (Mt 4:4,7). In his second temptation Satan also used Scripture, but a promise available only to one in the path of obedience. The scene give emphasis to the vital importance of “rightly dividing the word of truth” 2Ti 2:15.)
N2 p1005 to Mt. 8.2. “And, behold, there came a leper and worshipped him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean.” Gr. kurios. The first occurrence of the word as applied to Jesus with His evident sanction. In itself the word means ‘master,’ and is so used of mere human relationships in, e.g., Mt. 6.24; 15.27; Mk. 13.35; Eph. 6.9. Both uses, divine and human, are brought together in Col. 4.1. It is the Gr. equivalent of the Heb. Adonai (see Gen. 15.2, note), and is so used by Jesus Christ in Mt. 22.43-45. In the N.T. the distinctive uses of kurios (Lord) are: (1) As the N.T. translation of the Heb. Jehovah (LORD), e.g., Mt. 1.20, 22; 2.15; 3.3; 4.7, 10; 11.25; 21.9; Mk. 12.29, 30; Lk. 1.68; 2.9. (2) Jesus Himself so uses kurios, e.g. Mt. 4.7, 10; 11.25; Mk. 12.11, etc. (3) But the great use of kurios is as the divine title of Jesus, the Christ. In this sense it occurs in the N.T. 663 times. That the intent is to identify Jesus Christ w the OT deity is evident from Mt. 3.3; 12.8; 21.9 (Psa 118.26); 22.43-45; Lk. 1.43; John 8.58; 14.8-10; 20.28; Acts 9.5; 13.33 (Psa. 2). See John 20.28, note.
Jn. 10.10: “The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more.”
John 12.24 “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit.”
John 3.6: “That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.”
Jn. 1 [Correct translation follows. There are no participles in the Greek. All reliable Greek scholars translate the verse as follows. Plus, to make the verse consistent with the remainder of Scripture, the verse must be translated thus. To translate the verse other than follows reveals that the translator twisted his translation to fit his desired conclusion. JWs used this translation for most of their history, then they changed it because it presented an insurmountable obstacle to their theology.] “1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 14 and the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.”
Jn. 1.1. No Greek scholar has ever translated the passage, “A God.”
Jn. 1 “18 No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.” Note: Cf. Gen. 32.30; Ex. 24.10; 33.18; Jud. 6.22; 13.22; Rev. 22.4. The divine essence, God, in His own triune Person, no human being in the flesh has seen. But God, veiled in angelic form, and especially as incarnate in Jesus Christ, has been seen of men (Gen. 18.2, 22; John 14.8, 9).
Jn. 1.4: “In him was life; and the life was the light of men.”
Jn. 5.18 Therefore the Iewes sought the more to kill him, not onely because hee had broken the Sabbath, but said also, that God was his father, making himselfe equall with God.
Jn. 5.21: “For as the Father raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth them; even so the Son quickeneth whom he will.”
JWs have problems w/Phillipians 2.1-10. In V6 circle “being.” The word for being in the Greek, “huparcohn,” means “never stopped.” Jesus never stopped being God bc he became man. V10 is a direct quote from Isa. 45.23 [“As I live says Jehovah God, every knee whall bend to me and every tongue shall confess]. So Paul said, “Jesus is Jehovah God.”
Jesus asserts his deity. (Cf. John 14.9; 20.28, 29.) Jn. 10.22-38. Jn.” 10.30: “I and my father are one.” Jn. 10.33: “The Jews answered him, saying, For a good work we stone thee not, but for blasphemy, and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God.”
Jn. 10.33 (the Jews knew Jesus claimed to be God.).
Jn. 14.7-11 “7 If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.”
- 20.28 and N1 p1144 thereto (excellent on the diety of Christ) (Thomas said to Jesus, “My Lord and my God.”). “The deity of Jesus Christ is declared in Scripture: (1) In the intimations and explicit predictions of the OT. (a) The theophanies intimate the appearance of God in human form, and His ministry thus to man (Gen. 16.7-13; 18.2-23, esp. v. 17; 32.28 with Hos. 12.3-5; Ex. 3.2-14). (b) The Messiah is expressly declared to be the Son of God (Psa. 2.2-9), and God (Psa. 45.6,7 with Heb. 1.8, 9; Psa. 110.1 with Mt. 22.44; Acts 2.34 and Heb. 1.13; Psa. 110.4 with Heb. 5.6; 6.20; 7.17-21; and Zech. 6.13). (c) His virgin birth was foretold as the means through which God could be “Immanuel,” God with us (Isa.7.13, 14 with Mt. 1.22, 23). (d) The Messiah is expressly invested with the divine names (Isa. 9.6, 7). (e) In a prophecy of His death He is called Jehovah’s “fellow” (Zech. 13.7 with Mt. 26.31). (f) His eternal being is declared (Mic. 5.2 with Mt. 2.6; John 7.42).
“(2) Christ Himself affirmed His deity. (a) He applied to Himself the Jehovistic I AM. (The pronoun “he” is not in the Greek; cf John 8.24; John 8.56-58. The Jews correctly understood this to be our Lord’s claim to full deity [v.59]. See also, John 10.33; 18.4-6, where, also, ‘he’ is not in the original.) (b) He claimed to be the Adonai of the OT. (Mt. 22.42-45. See Gen 15.2, note). (c) He asserted His identity with the Father (Mt. 28.19; Mk. 14.62; John 10.30; that the Jews so understood Him is shown by vs. 31, 32; John 14.8, 9; 17.5). (d) He exercised the chief prerogative of God (Mk. 2.5-7; Li. 7.48-50). (e) He asserted omnipresence (Mt. 18.20; John 3.13); omniscience (John 11.11-14, when Jesus was fifty miles away; Mk. 11.6-8); omnipotence (Mt. 28.18; Lk. 7.14; John 5.21-23; 6.19); mastery over nature, and creative power (Lk. 9.16, 17; John 2.9; 10.28). (f) He received and approved human worship (Mt. 14.33; 28.9; John 20.28, 29).
- “(3) The NT writers ascribe divine titles to Christ (John 1.1; 20.28; Acts 20.28; Rom. 1.4; 9.5; 2 Thes. 1.12; 1 Tim. 3.16; Tit. 2.13; 1.8; 1 John 5.20.
- “(4) The NT writers ascribe divine perfections and attributes to Christ (e.g. Mt. 11.28; 18.20; 28.20; John 1.2; 2.23-25; 3.13; 5.17; 21.17; Heb. 1.3, 11, 12 with Heb. 13.8; Rev. 1.8, 17, 18; 2.23; 11.17; 22.13).
- “(5) The NT writers ascribe divine works to Christ (John 1.3, 10; Col. 1.16, 17; Heb. 1.3).
- “(6) The NT writers teach that supreme worship should be paid to Christ (Acts 7.59-60; 1 Cor. 1.2; 2 Cor. 13, 14; Phil. 2.9, 10; Heb. 1.6; Rev. 1.5, 6; 5.12, 13).
- “(7) The holiness and resurrection of Christ prove His Deity (John 8.46; Rom. 1.4).”
N1 to Acts 9.20, p1161. “Cf. Ac 2:36. Peter, while maintaining the deity of Jesus–“God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ”–gives especial prominence to His Messiahship. Paul, fresh from the vision of the glory, puts the emphasis on His Deity. Peter’s charge was that the Jews had crucified the Son of David Ac 2:25-30 Paul’s that they had crucified the Lord of glory 1Co 2:8. In the A.V. the sense is largely lost. The point was, not that the Christ was God, a truth plainly taught by Isaiah. Isa 7:14; 9:6-7 but that Jesus, the crucified Nazarene, was the Christ and therefore God the Son.”
Romans 5.14-19: “Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam’s transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come. But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many. And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification. For if by one man’s offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.) Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.”
N2 p. 1226 to I Cor. 15.22: “For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.” (Adam was a contrasting type of Christ, 1Co 15:45-47; Ro 5:14-19. (1) “The first man Adam was made a living soul” Ge 2:7, i.e. he derived life from another, that is, God. “The last Adam was a life-giving spirit.” So far from deriving life, He was Himself the fountain of life, and He gave that life to others “Joh 1:4; 5:21; 10:10; 12:24; 1Jo 5:12. (2) In origin the first man was of the earth, earthy; the Second Man is the Lord from heaven. (3) Each is the head of a creation, and these also are in contrast: in Adam all die; in Christ all will be made alive; the Adamic creation is “flesh”; the new creation, “spirit.” Joh 3:6.)
I Co. 15.45-50: “45 And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. 46 Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual. 47 The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven. 48 As is the earthy, such are they also that are earthy: and as is the heavenly, such are they also that are heavenly. 49 And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly. 50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.”
Col. 1 “15 Who [speaking of Jesus, as is evident from the context] is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: 16 For by him were all things created, (Gen. 1 “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. [then goes on the explain that God created all things on earth, etc.) that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him and for him: 17 And he is before all things, and by him all things consist. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; and in all things he might have the preeminence. 19 For it pleased the Father that in him should all fullness dwell;”
Col. 2.8-9. “Beware less any man spoil you…. For in him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily.” The Greek word is God…. Jesus is God in the flesh.
Titus 2 “11 For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, 12 Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; 13 Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.”
Heb. 1.6. God tells the angels to worship Jesus. In Lk. 4.6-8, the work worship is the same as in Heb. 1. Satan says, “If you will worship me. . . .” Then Jesus said you are only to worship Jehovah. So you can say to the JW, “Why don’t you worship Jesus?” God said worship me alone, then when Jesus came into the world, God said worship Jesus. The Bible does not contradict itself.
Heb. 1 “8 But unto the son he saith, Thy throne. O God, is for ever and ever: a scepter of righteousness is the scepter of thy kingdom.”
I Jn. 5.12 “He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.”
1 Jn. 5 “20 And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.
Jude 25 “To the only wise God our Saviour be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.”