Who Was Jesus – God, Man, or Both?

June 18, 2013 at 8:46 AM 1 comment

In the course of my discussion with several Muslims on Twitter, the topic has gravitated toward Jesus and their assertion that He was not God, but merely a human being. However, it is important to understand that He was our living example. He came into this world to live a life that completely fulfilled the Law.

It appears as though Jesus was merely a humble man, going about His daily life fully reliant upon God every day. That is the impression that He wanted to give because He was providing us with a living example of what it looks like (to others) to live a life that glorifies God the Father. This is how we are to live. However, if we get caught into the trap of believing that Jesus was not God Himself, then many portions of the New Testament do not make sense.

Right now I’m “witnessing” to two Muslims on Twitter. They dutifully reject what I say. Another Christian brother has joined the dialogue as well. It all started because of an article I wrote about Islam for another website.

The problem though is when do you stop talking? When do you recognize that you are getting into minutiae and that God must do the work, not you? When does witnessing stop being witnessing and becomes an argument over words?

The discussion has gotten to the point where the two Muslims are trying to prove that Jesus was not God. It is very sad to read the infantile arguments they offer. Yet, I’m sure they think they are using great wisdom. The sad truth is that these folks – due to blindness – cannot possibly understand the great teachings of numerous passages throughout the New Testament, specifically in Philippians 2 and Colossians 1. Their own blindness keeps them from the realization of truth there.

When people look at the life of Christ, they naturally see a Man who submitted Himself to God the Father. Because of this, they tend to assume that He was subservient to Him, not equal. Because He was not equal, how could Jesus also be God? My Muslims friends also note that Jesus died and if He died, He could not have been God. They miss the entire point of salvation.

On one hand, Jesus lived as an example to us all. He literally showed us how to live a life that constantly pleased God the Father. He didn’t just talk the talk. He walked the walk.

Therefore, to simply look at the life of Jesus in the gospels might tempt us to think that Jesus – in His character – was subservient to God. What we are seeing in the gospels though, is Jesus, the God/Man, who specifically and deliberately humbled Himself and lived life mainly as a human being, only using His deity when it coincided with the Father’s will.

However, we also see glimpses of Jesus as God in the gospels as well. In John 9, we see an example of Jesus healing a blind man. The way He did this is very telling. John 9:6 says, “He spat on the ground, and made clay of the spittle, and applied the clay to his eyes…” Jesus told the man to go and wash in the Pool of Siloam. When the man had done that, he was able to see.

Jesus was actually re-creating the man’s eyes. Jesus spat on the ground, made some clay and applied that clay to the man’s dead eyes. In essence, Jesus wasn’t simply going through eccentric motions here. He was creating new eyes for the man. It was an act of creation! Only God can do that and while my Muslim friends say that Jesus did that by “Allah’s will and power,” the truth is that other portions of Scripture show us that Jesus was in fact, God.

My Muslim friends say that Jesus did this by the power of “Allah.” The problem is that God says He will share His glory with no one.

“I am the LORD; that is my name; my glory I give to no other, nor my praise to carved idols,” (Isaiah 42:8).

“For my own sake, for my own sake, I do it, for how should my name be profaned? My glory I will not give to another,” (Isaiah 48:11).

Which is it? Does God share His glory with anyone else or not? If He does, then He lied in Isaiah. Either that, or this is evidence of the Trinity, with Jesus being equal to God because He is God, God the Son.

When Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead, He created life (cf. John 11). Note in the narrative that by the time Jesus arrives to Lazarus’ grave, Lazarus had been dead for four days. There was no chance he had just slipped into a coma and was still alive. He was actually dead. Martha warns Jesus (vs. 39) that Lazarus would be stinking by this time (after Jesus says to remove the stone that covered the grave’s entrance).

Jesus called Lazarus from the grave and Lazarus came forth (vv. 43-44). This is not the resuscitation of life. Jesus had not even touched Lazarus. It is the creation of life. Only God can do that! Jesus was/is God!

Paul proves this in his letter to the Philippians. “Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men,” (vv. 5-7). This is very clear. Prior to His birth into this life, Jesus “existed in the form of God” (literally, “as God”). Yet because of His love for humanity, He deliberately took on the form of a bond-servant (a man) and lived as a human being among us to show us how to live and to fulfill the Law.

People who fail to understand the ramifications of this truth also fail to understand that Jesus as God never stopped being God, but simply added to Himself the form of a servant, the likeness of a man. In doing so, He lived a life of perfect submission to the Father to show us how to do it. It is as simple as that. Jesus lived a life that we are all to live, but only He could do it because He was/is God.

All of God’s fullness lives in Jesus (Colossians 1:19). He is God.

Entry filed under: Islam. Tags: , , , , , .

Will the Real Muslim Please Stand Up! God Either Opens Eyes to the Truth or Not

1 Comment

  • 1. Lester  |  June 18, 2013 at 12:45 PM

    This is an old argument. Many do not see the fullness and the understanding of it all. Jesus was fully son of man and Son of God. The eternal Son of God. When I came to this full understanding it almost knocked me to the floor and I wept for along time. Acknowledging the fact that we are sons of man and conceived by the Holy Spirit/GOD to eventually be born full grown Sons of God!
    This is Christ Jesus purpose and the work is in progress. So many cannot understand the Trinity or Triunity of Father Son and Holy Spirit. God is not just I Am He is the I the ONE! If we be ONE in HIM we shall see the Glory of God in all this universe and beyond! It really explains the fullness and stature of Jesus Christ! To him that overcomes!

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