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ajcrownofthorns.jpgIs Jesus God? If you answered with a quick, firm “yes,” read on. Recent polls show a whopping 96% of Americans believe in “God.” Obviously, considering the state of American Christianity, something doesn’t quite add up. Dare we assume that 96% of Americans believe in the Christian God? Do we all have the same “god” in mind when we confess faith?

Now think about the center of Christian apologetics: that Jesus Christ is God. Please don’t excommunicate me just yet, but if you were to ask me, “Is Jesus God?” I would respond with another question. “Which ‘god’ are we talking about?” Most evangelical Christians, when sharing the Gospel, assume that Jesus’ identity is in question, while God’s isn’t. In other words, we think everyone basically agrees with us about who God is, and so all we must do is simply proclaim Jesus’ divine link to Him.

Declaring the divinity of Jesus by stating matter-of-factly that He is God does not really resolve anything until we have painted the biblical picture of the true God. Yet in the past 200 years, fundamentalists and evangelicals have defended Christ’s divinity without stopping to consider how God’s identity is also under attack. Why? Liberal theologians have taught that Jesus was not divine and should not be worshipped as God in the flesh. Conservative Christians have rightly recoiled from such heresy, but while simply affirming Jesus’ deity might stifle the theologians, it provokes a “so what?” from the person on the street.

“Jesus is God” can’t be true until we get past all the other “gods” masquerading under the Christian “God” label. Muslims worship an impersonal, distant “god” (Allah, in Arabic), but is the Muslim-god the same as ours? Most Americans will line up to sing “God bless America.” Yet considering the Deist beliefs of several of our forefathers (and a growing segment of the population today), this Clockmaker-god does nothing more than put the clock together, wind it up, put it up on a shelf, and go about His business or back to His rocking chair. If the god that is in mind is one of these, saying “Jesus is God” is incorrect. Jesus definitely is not that god.

A Christian who knows his Bible and has a clear picture of God can be telling the truth when he says, “Jesus is God”, and at the same time, the person listening (perhaps with a Deist concept of god) may be hearing an outright lie. Jesus’ divinity is not the only issue at stake here; God’s very identity is under attack too.

Some readers might affirm that “Jesus is the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob” in order to eliminate many pluralistic gods. But where does that leave our Jewish friends, since they would easily affirm the same statement? You might say, “Jews and Christians share the same God! It’s just about Jesus that we don’t see eye to eye.” By saying this, Christians make a glaring misrepresentation of Yahweh – the Great I Am.

God is not God apart from Jesus. It is pointless to try to define the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob apart from Jesus Christ. That is the pluralistic problem plaguing so many Christian factions today. Since you can’t explain the Bible’s God without involving the Trinity, you can never fully explain how “Jesus is God” makes any sense at all.

Since Christians believe in a triune God – Yahweh in three Persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit, we actually undermine the divinity of Christ by claiming that our God is the same as that of our Jewish friends. As Christians, we believe Jesus is so important that you can’t define God’s identity apart from Him.

So what’s the answer? What can help us get through some of the theological red tape and bring us to the point where we can once again make a firm statement for the Gospel?

Here’s the statement that I recommend you chew on a little bit: GOD IS JESUS. When you see Jesus, you are seeing God, not just because Jesus is God, but also because God is Jesus. Jesus is the One who shows us who God is and what God is like.

Of course, “God is Jesus” is a statement that has its own interesting theological snags. We can start heading backwards by asking, “Which Jesus is God?” since people don’t agree on Jesus’ identity either! Still, I believe we can more easily define Jesus’ identity and how it relates to God’s Person than we can trying to go the other way around.

So, looking ahead for the 21st century, how can we move forward in our Gospel proclamation? Let’s teach people who Jesus is; show them how Scripture describes Him; tell about His atoning sacrifice on the cross; proclaim Him as Lord. Then, utilizing the biblical portrait of Jesus, tell people, “That’s who God is. That’s what God is like! That’s God in human flesh.” You want to know God’s identity? Meet Jesus. God is Jesus.

written by Trevin Wax. © 2007 Kingdom People Blog


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19 thoughts on “God is Jesus”

  1. God is Jesus.

    Great article! Great point!

  2. Colleen Bondeson says:

    Thankyou for the article. Well said. I teach Primary scripture classes in Australia. The children often are surprised when I tell them that God is Jesus.

  3. Gregg in CA says:

    God is Jesus?
    This is not the message of the New Testament and not what the Old Testament predicted. Jesus is the Messiah and “the Son of God”….never ever presented as “God the Son”. Check your Bible. The biggest and all mistakes is to say that the Bible presents a Trinity God, it never does. It presents athe One God of Israel, Yahweh by name, as send to us His Son, the human Jesus, who mediates a New Covenant fulling and replacing the Mosaic Covenant. The “multi-person” Trinitarian God is not biblical and the misconception that has be errantly forced into the biblical message, with disastrous results. the one body and splintered into 30,000 demoninations, Is this God’s purposes being fullfilled? Rethink your statements please!

  4. RD says:

    Gregg,

    I agree with a portion of your comments. The OT prophets never indicate that the coming messiah would be, in essence, God. He would be a human being raised up BY God from within Israel to be God’s righteous servant. However, later NT writings clearly relate Jesus as being in the same essence as God. Most notably in John’s Gospel.

    I do think, though, that there really wasn’t concensus among the early Christians as to the nature of Jesus. I left the following comment over on Joe Carter’s post about the Muslim God, and I think it is worth repeating here:

    The book of Acts gives us the best look at how the original apostles preached Jesus. In Acts, the idea of Jesus being, in essence, God does not seem to be represented in the apostle’s theology as they spread the message. They seem (to me) to see him more in light of the prophesied Jewish messiah (a human being who would be raised up from within Israel to usher in the Kingdom of God).

    For example:

    “Fellow Israelites, listen to this: Jesus of Nazareth was a man accredited by God to you by miracles, wonders and signs, which God did among you through him, as you yourselves know.” Acts 2:22

    “Therefore, let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Messiah.” Acts 2:36

    “The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of our fathers, has glorified his servant Jesus.” Acts 3:13

    “You know what has happened throughout Judea, beginning in Galilee after the baptism that John preached– how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and power, how he went around doing good and healing all who were under the power of the devil, because God was with him.” Acts 10: 37-38

    There are many many other verses that identify Jesus in this way. Take only Acts 10:37-38: If Jesus is understood to be the Son of God (in essence God) why would God need to anoint Jesus with the Holy Spirit? Jesus and the Holy Spirit would be part of the same essence of the Trinity, right? And, these verses clearly declare that Jesus “went around doing good and healing all who were under the power of the devil” not because Jesus was God, but because God was WITH Jesus (doing these acts through him). It is a very Jewish understanding of who the messiah would be.

  5. C Hastings says:

    Yes, Jesus is God. Unfortunately, the following statement from the article is a direct contradiction of scripture: “You might say, “Jews and Christians share the same God! It’s just about Jesus that we don’t see eye to eye.” By saying this, Christians make a glaring misrepresentation of Yahweh – the Great I Am.”

    In Acts 24, defending himself against Jewish accusers, Paul says, “13 And they cannot prove to you the charges they are now making against me. 14 However, I admit that I worship the God of our ancestors as a follower of the Way, which they call a sect. I believe everything that is in accordance with the Law and that is written in the Prophets, 15 and I have the same hope in God as these men themselves have, that there will be a resurrection of both the righteous and the wicked. 16 So I strive always to keep my conscience clear before God and man.”

    Paul clearly affirms that both he and his persecutors are worshiping “the God of our ancestors” – the same God. He says they worship in a different way. Contrary to other posts, I do not see this as precluding full trinitarianism.

    I see no conflict in saying that Christians worship the same God as Jews (and Jesus as he worshiped in his fully human existence), but Christians worship as trinitarians while Jews do not. That is consistent with both Paul’s position in Acts, and the doctrine of the trinity. It is also consistent with Jesus’ representation of himself in scripture.

    Another way to see it is that Christians and Jews could both affirm the first part of the Apostles creed in full, and be referring to the same God whose nature is outlined in the same Bible.

    With Islam it is different as Allah is a specific name of God, attested to under a different text than the Bible and there is no biblical support for Allah so described being “the same God.”

  6. Susan says:

    Jesus is the son of God not God himself. The old testament prophesied about the coming of a messiah, not the coming of God himself. In the new testament, this prophesy was fulfilled when God sent his son Jesus to come down to earth in the image of man with the spirit of God in attempt to redeem us from eternal condemnation as we had sinned and fallen short of the glory of God whereby losing the likeness to God we had when God in the beginning decided to create man “in his own image”.
    God therefore sent Jesus the messiah to remind us and re-educate us on what we were supposed to be like being Christ- like (Christians) and having the image of himself God.
    Jesus was and is a reflection of God the father possessing the spirit of God ( the holy spirit) which he left with us in the 2nd chapter of Acts which demonstrated how if we live like Christ did, we come come to possess the amazing spirit of God and have a shot at eternal life.

  7. wonderful says:

    yes,JESUS IS GOD as written in Hebrews 1:9.ISAIAH9:6.you see God of abraham,the God of Isaac and the God of jacob is JESUS CHRIST.The LORD of lords our savior declare that no one has see the john6:46 and servant paul said,that the ROCK follow was CHRIST.so believe with me what the servant of God saw in mount sinai and even wilderness,even red sea was CHRIST.1CORINTHAINS10:4

  8. Kevin says:

    I’ve attended Christian churches off and on my whole life (66). The more life experiences, and study, the more I doubt what I’ve been taught. There has been so much effort to make reasonable what is not.

  9. Kevin says:

    There has been so much effort to make reasonable what is not. It’s kind like “The Emperor’s New Clothes”.

  10. Tom M says:

    I would agree with C Hastings We as Christians and Jews do worship the same God of our ancestors as told in Holy Scripture. We have to ask ourselves the question how were our ancestors (pre Jesus ) saved? The same way we are. Their faith in God looking toward the coming of the messiah. That’s why Jesus was so angry with them when those who should have known who he was denied his arrival hence todays dilemma! The only thing that separates a non Christian Jew from a born again Jew is Jesus.

  11. Lew White says:

    Alahim is Yahusha is a more “Hebraic” way of putting it. Toma (Thomas) worshipped Yahusha when he kneeled before Yahusha saying, “Adonai u’ Alahenu” (my master and my Alahim) at Yn. 20:28. Rather than using Athansius’ “trinity” to explain the identity of Yahusha, Hebrews chapter 1 tells us Yahuah revealed Himself in Yahusha. I fully agree with you, Yahuah is Yahusha! This is only revealed to those He selects to know it (Luke 10:22). Google: BYNV – thank you, Lew White

  12. Abigail says:

    Thank you Lrw White. Jesus is God whether humanity believes or not doesn’t change the nature of God. Only by faith will receive the understanding of who really God is. God is a spirit and only those who are spiritual can understand Him.
    the issue of the trinity has baffled many in and outside the Christian world. It will continue to do so until one approaches God with humility to ask for understanding.

  13. Christian says:

    I would like to comment on this article, quickly; I am hoping, not only that it is received with the love that is sent with it, but that I am not deceived and being used as a pawn of hate and ungodliness. I preamble this comment because I know human reaction, also to let you know that I am not trying to show you up, or bring you down. To the author, I have problem with this article- you don’t quote any sort of biblical references- at all. What you have done is to give an opinion wrapped up in modern theology…I am sure I have done this also, so I am not judging you apart from myself, Everyone does this. The problem here, is this is a crutch of Trinity, and a way that Christians use to judge not only other beliefs but also to blast other “flavors” of Christianity. Here is the problem, as I see it Biblically, John teaches us that when we see Christ, we shall be like Christ. So are we to be God? If Christ is God, because they are one, then we shall be or as in John 17:21 states that we also become God, because we become one in them. The idea that God is Jesus is phenomenally odd- Jesus was a sacrifice, an atoning lamb and mediator of the covenant between God and man… 1) God didn’t sacrifice himself, but gave His only begotten son as sacrifice; as far as the lamb and mediator, one can not mediate for himself or sacrifice himself, to himself. Christ Jesus is High priest, not High priest and the God that is worshipped, it isn’t logical or biblical. So where does the idea enter in? Our understanding of the word “God.” Those that are mighty are ‘el’ or ‘theon’- Moses was god to Israel and Aaron, his prophet and all Israel was god; clearly, we understand they are not part of the Godhead. To bring up one final point, the bible is clear that all power and authority was given to Christ Jesus, and after the task is done, he returns it- 1Cor 15:24- one cannot be God part of Trinity, equal to all other parts, and then be subject to one of the other parts of the triune God. Please feel free, as I know most of you will, to respond…just careful the heart of the response.

  14. Jeremiah Kaaya says:

    But dear Gregg, can you also read John 20:28, you will realize that in this particular case Jesus is particularly presented as God. Secondly, if I may ask, why shouldn’t Jesus be God? What did God tell us He looks like? What is His Description? If Jesus is God, can we explore the one reason why He put on human flesh? Couldn’t it really have been for the job?

    I believe Jesus is God, but His mission was not primarily to show us His deity, His mission was to save. Understanding Him as God is only by revelation, much as many more other things are. But the truth is Jesus is indeed God. No human could stand the tests, the humiliation etc which Jesus stood and overcame and wouldn’t have fired back a shot. We even go off for simple, simple issues, sometimes when we are even actually in wrong. Jesus stood all.

  15. Jack says:

    Well said Christian. YHWH is Spirit (Jn.4:24): Jesus of Nazareth was flesh and blood, born of a virgin, super-natural, yes, but then so were Adam (Gen.1) and Melchizedek (Gen.14; Heb..7): No one has seen YHWH at anytime; the only begotten Son,.. He hath declared HIM (Jn.1:18): Jesus lived as a Jew until His immersion when the Spirit of YHWH descended on Him without measure (Jn.3:35) as the Anointed One of YHWH, Messiah, beginning His ministry (Mt.3:16): “But if I cast out demons by the Spirit of YHWH…((Mt.12.28): This Jesus YHWH raised up again…therefore having been exalted to the right hand of YHWH…(Acts 32,33): the Son can do nothing of Himself…(Jn.5:19): You have heard that I have said unto you, I go away and I am coming to you. If you loved Me you would rejoice that I go to the Father, for [My] Father is greater than I. (Jh.14:28): &c.

    There are contradictions aplenty, but one thing is sure, “YHWH, our GOD, is one YHWH… (Dt.6:4; Mk.12:29,30), YHWH is GOD, there is no other beside HIM. (Dt.4:35), For GOD is one, and [the] mediator of GOD and men one, [the] man Christ Jesus, (1 Tim.2:5): the One who sits at the right hand is not HIM who sits on the Throne.

  16. peter hobday says:

    The point being argued about divinity is not of any value, as we do not know what the entity ‘God’ consists of. Jesus referred to himself as the ‘son of man’.

    We do not know what ‘divinity’ is, we do not know what ‘heaven’ is, or when it comes into being in our lives. Priests and popes do not know either. The religious can only speculate. However, many find following the doctrine of Christ helpful in our daily lives. But as far as ‘God’ is concerned, it is belief in the unknown.

    Whatever influenced Christ, and caused his widespread and unmatched influence on mankind was either internal or external to Him. If external, then that is what ‘God’ is.

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Trevin Wax


​Trevin Wax is managing editor of The Gospel Project at LifeWay Christian Resources, husband to Corina, father to Timothy, Julia, and David. You can follow him on Twitter or receive blog posts via email. Click here for Trevin’s full bio.

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