Philippians 2: Jesus had equality with God, but emptied Himself of it.

It is not conceivable that God can empty Himself of equality with God, but Jesus did.  This implies that Jesus is not God.  But Philippians 2 also says that every knee will bow to Jesus.  Why do we worship Jesus if He is not God?

Philippians mapPhilippians 2:5-11 contains a profound statement of the nature and being of Christ.  It describes Jesus through four chronological stages:

1. Pre-existence

Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped” (2:5-6).

Firstly, this confirms that Jesus existed before He became a human being.  Some Unitarians (as opposed to Trinitarians) deny His pre-existence.

Secondly, He existed in the form of God:  Isaiah saw “the Lord sitting on a throne, lofty and exalted, with the train of His robe filling the temple. Seraphim stood above Him, each having six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew” (Is. 6:1-4).  Since Jesus, before He became a human being, existed in the form of God, this could have been a vision of Jesus.

2. Incarnation

Jesus Christ … emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men” (2:7)

What did He empty Himself of? 

Since Christ “did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself,” we infer that He emptied Himself of “equality with God.”  He also “emptied Himself” of “the form of God,” for He took on “the form of a bond-servant … being made in the likeness of men” (2:6-7).

He humbled Himself.

Adam attempted to seize equality with God (Gen. 3:5 – “You will be like God”).  Christ did the opposite: “He had to be made like his brothers in all things” (Heb. 2:17).  He emptied Himself of His powers and knowledge, starting His human life as a vulnerable baby (Luke 2:7; Gal. 4:4).  He performed many miracles, but only because “God anointed Him with the Holy Spirit and with power” (Acts 10:38).  “Our Lord Jesus Christ … though He was rich, yet for your sake He became poor” (2 Cor. 8:9).  He voluntarily descended to the realm where He was “despised and forsaken of men, a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief” (Isaiah 53:3).

Jesus is the visible image of the invisible God (Col. 1:15).  Jesus therefore said, “He who has seen Me has seen the Father” (John 14:9).  That Jesus emptied Himself, when He became a human being, tells us what God is like; how much God loves His enemies.  “God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son” (John 3:16).

He became a real human being. 

Just like us, He had to grow in wisdom and stature (Luke 2:52).  “Although He was a Son, He learned obedience from the things which He suffered” (Heb. 5:8).  He became weary (John 4:6), thirsty (John 19:28) and hungry (Mt. 4:2).  He marveled at the faith of the centurion (Matthew 8:10) and experienced sorrow when Lazarus died (John 11:35).  In Gethsemane He grieved deeply, to the point of death (Mt. 26:38).  The next day He died (Mark 15:37).  Jesus did not just look like a man; He was truly and fully human.

How is it possible?

How it was possible for Jesus, through whom God created all things, and who “upholds all things by the word of His power” (Heb. 1:3), to be transformed into a human embryo, we cannot begin to understand, and we will not even try.  “The secret things belong to the LORD our God” (Deut. 29:29).

Who is Jesus eternally? 

What we want to learn through the current series of articles is who Jesus really is; not only who He was as a human being.  He said, “I can do nothing on My own initiative” (John 5:30).  Since He emptied Himself of equality with God, and was emptied of the powers which He had prior to His birth, we must always ask whether such statements are also true of His eternal being.

3. Death

Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross” (2:8)

He suffered a cruel death.

He remained “obedient to the point of death.”  The important matter is not His death, but His obedience.  His entire life was a test, namely to see whether He would remain obedient in all circumstances.  Satan was allowed to test Jesus, even “to the point of death.”  But Jesus remained faithful, “that through death He might render powerless him who had the power of death, that is, the devil” (Heb. 2:14).  For a further discussion, see Why Jesus had to die.

4. Exaltation

For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” (2:9-11)

This means that Jesus is worshiped.  The Bible commands us to worship only God, but we must also worship Jesus.  Does this mean that Jesus is God?

The Father is God.

The reader might perhaps find this surprising, but this passage in Philippians 2 shows that the New Testament reserves the title “God” for the Father only, as can be seen in the following:

1. He existed in the form of God (2:6).

Before Jesus became a human being, He existed in the form of God and had equality with God.  If an angel appears in the form of a man, he is still an angel and not a man.  Similarly, that Jesus existed in the form of God does not mean that He is God.  To the contrary, that Jesus existed in the form of God and that He had equality with God mean He was distinct from God.

2. He emptied Himself of equality with God (2:7). 

If Jesus is God, it would be impossible for Him to empty Himself of His divine nature.  He would only be able to empty Himself of His divine form and glory.  However, our text also states that He emptied Himself of equality with God.  It is not conceivable that God could do this.  Since Jesus was able to empty Himself of equality with God, it is implied that He is not God, given the way that the New Testament uses the word “God.”

Jesus said He did not know the hour or the day of His second coming, “but the Father alone” (Matthew 24:36; cf. Mark 13:26-27, 32).  Those who hold that Jesus is God, and who argue that He only emptied Himself of His divine form and glory, sometimes attempt to explain this lack of knowledge by arguing that He was two beings in one; a divine and a human person.  They propose that His divine side knew all things, but His human side knew not.  This view of Jesus we reject.  He is a single Being.

3. God highly exalted Him (2:9). 

God did this after Jesus’ death on the Cross, His resurrection and ascension.  This statement confirms that Jesus is distinct from God.

4. Taught all over the New Testament.

That Jesus is distinct from God, is taught everywhere in the New Testament.  See The NT reserves the title “God” for the Father.  Examples from this article include the following:

Jesus prayed, “This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent” (John 17:3).

There is but one God, the Father … and one Lord, Jesus Christ” (1 Cor. 8:6).

Jesus “is the (visible) image of the invisible God” (Col. 1:15).

Jesus “spent the whole night in prayer to God” (Luke 6:12).

The title God

It needs to be added that the word “God” does not appear in the ancient Hebrew or Greek text of the Bible.  In modern English we use “God” as a name (a proper noun) for one specific Being.  The Bible uses the words elohim and theos as general nouns, equivalent to our words “gods” and “god,” and used for all gods.  Since the Bible is a book about God, it uses theos almost always for the Father.  But a number of times theos is also used for other beings, including for false gods, the devil and for appetite and even for people that are mandated by God.

For example, when Jesus said “I and the Father are one,” the Jews became very angry.  They were ready to stone Him, “because You, being a man, make Yourself out to be God” (John 10:33).  In His defense Jesus referred to Psalms 82:6, which reads:

Rescue the weak and needy … I have said, ‘You are gods (Elohim); you are all sons of the Most High.’

Jesus explained, “If he called them gods, to whom the word of God came” (John 10:34-35).  This is one example of where the Bible uses elohim and theos in the general sense of the word, indicating someone exalted above others.

Therefore, when translators interpret a passage, that contains the word theos, as referring to the Most High, they translate it as “God.”  In other instances they might translate it as “god.”  The point is that we should not focus too much on the name “God.”  What is more important is who and what Jesus is.  For a further discussion, see the article The Meanings of the Word THEOS.

Jesus is subordinate to God.

Philippians 2 also presents Jesus as subordinate to God, for it teaches that “God” highly exalted Jesus (2:9). As discussed in the article Subordinate to God, this is also taught all over the New Testament.  For instance:

The most frequent quote in the New Testament, from the Old Testament, is that Jesus today sits at the right hand of God (e.g. Acts 2:33).  This both shows that He is distinct from and subordinate to God.

Years after Jesus’ ascension, Paul wrote, “Christ is the head of every man, and … and God is the head of Christ” (1 Cor. 11:3).  This was therefore not only true when Jesus lived as a man on earth,

All will honor the Son even as they honor the Father” (John 5:23) because the Father “has given all judgment to the Son.” (v22; note the “so that.”)

The article Subordinate to God, shows that the Bible teaches that everything which Jesus has, He received from His Father.  This includes His ability to raise the dead, His authority to judge, His teachings, His works and His disciples.  He even received the Fullness of Deity from God.

Jesus said, “My food is doing the will of him who sent me and finishing the work he has given me” (John 4:34; Phillips).  This confirms that Jesus was subordinate to the Father even before He became a human being.

Jesus referred to God as His God.  He said, “I ascend to … My God” (John 20:17).

These verses also confirm that the Most High is the Great Source of all things and that the title “God” is reserved for the Most High.  Jesus is not the Source; He is the Means through which the Most High created (and still upholds) all things.  But we worship Jesus:

Every knee will bow.

Philippians 2 teaches that the New Testament reserves the title “God” for the Father, and that Jesus is subordinate to God, but it also teaches that Jesus must be worshiped.  God highly exalted Him so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord (2:9-11).  As we read elsewhere, “All will honor the Son even as they honor the Father” (John 5:23).  In Revelation 5 heavenly beings fell down before the Lamb with the prayers of the saints and give honor to both Him who sits on the throne (the Father), and to the Lamb.  God commanded all angels to worship His Son (Heb. 1:6).  We must honor Jesus as we honor the Father.

On the other hand, the Bible teaches that only God may be worshiped: “You shall worship the Lord your God and serve Him only” (Luke 4:8).  The question is therefore, why do we worship Jesus, if He is not God?

We worship Jesus to the glory of God. 

Many Christians argue that Jesus is worshiped because He is co-equal with the Father, but we already noted that Jesus is subordinate to God.  Philippians 2:9-11 also explains why Jesus is worshiped:

God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW … and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Firstly, every knee will bow to Jesus because God exalted Him and gave Him a name “which is above every name.”  That God gave Him this name means that God elevated Jesus above all else.  God is the great Source of power and authority.  Jesus received everything from God; also such an exalted position that it is right and proper for created beings to worship Him.  This agrees with Hebrews 1:6, which says that God commanded all angels to worship His Son.

Secondly, the beings of the universe do not confess Jesus as God; they confess that “Jesus Christ is Lord.”  The article Jesus in Colossians shows that Jesus is never called God; He is always called Lord.  This is the consistent pattern of the New Testament; Jesus is Lord and to the Father is God.

Thirdly, all will confess that He is Lord “to the glory of God the Father.”  In other words, Jesus is not worshiped independently of God the Father (cf. Rev. 5).  By giving glory to Jesus, the universe gives glory to God.  The worship of the universe flows through Jesus to the Father.  Jesus is the visible image of the invisible God (Col. 1:15), appearing in the form of God.  Through Him we worship God, who exists outside space, time and matter.

These are the reasons we find in Philippians 2, but this is not to say that we worship a created being.  Jesus is not created, but the Only Begotten Son of God.

John 1:1

Philippians 2 helps us to understand John 1:1.  Both passages make a distinction between God and Jesus, but both also describe Jesus as divine.  John 1:1 reads:

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

The Word is Jesus.  Some deny this, saying that “the Word” is God’s creative power or that Jesus pre-existed only as God’s plan, and that Jesus did not literally exist before He came to exist in Mary’s womb.  A number of articles have been published on this website on the translation of John 1:1.  One of these identifies the Word of John 1:1 as Jesus.

The Word was with God.

This phrase in John 1:1b makes a distinction between God and Jesus, consistent with what we find Philippians 2 and everywhere else in the New Testament.

Angel Gabriel said to Mary that Jesus will be called the Son of the Most High (Luke 1:26-32).  The Most High is therefore Jesus’ Father.  Jesus generally referred to the Most High as “Father.” In the phrase “the Word was with God,” the title “God” therefore refers to the Father, who is “the Most High.

Therefore, in the way that the New Testament uses the title “God,” Jesus is not God.  But then John 1:1 continues to say:

The Word was theos.

In most Bibles this is translated as, “the Word was God.”  For many Christians this is the best proof that Jesus is God.

This phrase is one of the few exceptions where the New Testament uses the title theos not for the Most High.

As explained above, there is an important difference between the titles “God” and theos.  With further identification in the context, theos may be translated as “God,” but theos has a range of other possible meanings, including:

False gods, for example, “there are many gods and many lords, yet for us there is but one God, the Father” (1 Co. 8:5-6);
Real things that oppose God, such as “the god of this world” (1 Cor. 4:4) and “whose god is their appetite” (Phil. 3:19);
Beings mandated by God, for instance “the LORD said to Moses, ‘See, I make you as God to Pharaoh’” (Ex. 7:1), and those “to whom the word of God came” (John 10:35), also mentioned above;
Qualitatively, e.g. “divine” or “Godlike.”  We can describe our local sport hero as a god, referring to his or her near superhuman abilities.

Given these possible meanings, and since the previous phrase and the entire New Testament makes a distinction between God and Jesus, it is proposed that the phrase “the Word was theos” does not identify Jesus as identical to “the only true God” to whom Jesus prayed (John 17:3).

One of the articles on John 1:1 argues that The Word was God is not the correct translation because theos is used in John 1:1c with a qualitative sense.  In other words, the title theos in John 1:1 describes Jesus as Godlike.  That Jesus “was theos” can therefore be understood as equivalent to the statements in Philippians 2 that Jesus exists in the form of God, has equality with God and “at the name of Jesus every knee will bow” (v10).  A similar statement is:

In Him all the fullness of Deity dwells in bodily form” (Col. 2:9).

This is often used to argue that Jesus is co-equal with the Father, but it was the Father who gave “all the fullness to dwell in Him” (Col. 1:19).

It is proposed, in summary, when theos is used for the Most High, that it identifies the Invisible God, who is the uncaused Cause of the universe and everything inside of it.  But when John 1:1 applies the title “God” to Jesus, it is not a definite (God) or an indefinite (a god) use of the noun, but a qualitative use, describing Jesus as equal to the Most High in the esteem and affections of the created universe.

Is Jesus called God?

Above it is repeatedly said that the New Testament only refers to the Father as God.  However, out of the more than 1300 times that theos appears in the New Testament, there are about seven instances where theos possibly refers to Jesus.  These instances are discussed in the article Is Jesus called God?  It is shown that in every instance there is either uncertainty with respect to:

The Source Text, for instance, the manuscripts of John 1:18 with the widest distribution do not describe Jesus as theos.  See Is Jesus called God in John 1:18?
The punctuation, for instance, in Romans 9:5 it is all a matter of punctuation, and all punctuation in the Bible is interpretation.  See Is Jesus called God in Romans?
The interpretation, for instance John 1:1.  See The Word was God.

Who is Jesus?

After the wonderful Christ-events of the first century the church had to make sense of what just happened.  On the one hand, the church originated as a sect of Judaism (see Jerusalem Phase of the Early Church), with its strong emphasis on monotheism.  On the other hand, Jesus appeared as a human being, but is worshiped and declared to be “the first and the last” (Rev. 1:17; 2:8).  Various theories about Christ developed and were tolerated over the next 200 years.

But when the church, in the fourth century, became the official religion of the Roman Empire, Caesar Constantine sought to ensure unity in his empire.  To reduce conflict, he forced the church to formulate a majority position.  This was done in the year 325 in what is known as the Nicene Creed.  This creed did not yet contain the idea of a Trinity, namely three Persons in one Being.  The emphasis in this creed was to declare Jesus as God and of the same substance as the Father.  A new invention in the creed was to condemn or curse all Christians who do not agree with the creed.  This non-tolerance reflects the culture of the Roman Empire which controlled the church at the time.

After the year 325 differing views remained, and various alternative creeds were proposed.  In the year 344, for instance, the Eastern church issued the Creed of the Long Lines as an alternative to the Nicene Creed.  And in the year 381 the Nicene Creed was adjusted as shown in Wikipedia’s page on the Nicene Creed.

As said above, this website opposes this view that Jesus is of the same substance as God.  So what view of Christ does this website prefer?  It may be fair to say that this website represents the LOGOS theories that dominated in the second century.

God always works through Jesus.

This concept is critical for understanding who Jesus is:

God created and upholds all things through Jesus: All things have been created through Him (Jesus) and for Him.  He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together” (Col 1:16-17).  “There is but one God, the Father, from whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him” (1 Cor. 8:6).

God communicates to the universe through Jesus:  “No one has seen God at any time; the only begotten God who is in the bosom of the Father, He has explained Him” (John 1:18).  “His name is called The Word of God” (Rev. 19:13).

God reconciled all things to Himself through Jesus:  “For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him, and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself” (Col. 1:19-20).  “For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus” (1 Tim 2:5).

In other words, everything which God does, He does through His Son.

Jesus is equal to God.

In addition to what we read in Philippians 2, we read of many things that elevate Jesus to the level of God:

Jesus said, “All things that the Father has are Mine” (John 16:15).

All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me” (Matthew 28:18).

No one knows the Son except the Father; nor does anyone know the Father except the Son” (Mt. 11:27; cf. Luke 10:22).  This is an amazing statement of equality.

God not only created all things through His Son; “in Him (Jesus) all things hold together” (Col. 1:17; cf. Heb. 1:3).

Jesus is not a created being; He is the Only Begotten Son of God (John 3:18, 16).

Hypothesis

To reconcile the competing ideas in the New Testament, this website puts forward the following hypothesis:

By begetting His Son, God made all things.  It is proposed that this is what it means when we read that God created all things through Jesus.  The implication would be that the Son always existed, for God also created time by begetting His Son.

God does not exist in time.  Rather, time, together with the space and matter of the universe, exists somewhere inside God.  God is not subject to time.

Jesus is the link between the universe and God. Through Jesus all creative and sustaining power flows from God to the universe, and through Jesus all thanksgiving and praise flow from the intelligent beings back to God.  “Every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Jesus is the God of the Old Testament.  Every visible and personal appearance of God in the Old Testament is an appearance of Jesus, in the form of God.  See Jesus in the Old Testament.

The reader may regard this hypothesis as mere speculation, and that is what it is, for these matters are necessarily beyond human understanding.  It is simply the writer’s personal present understanding of the facts that Jesus is described as distinct from God, and as subordinate to God, but is also described in the most exalted terms.  (This website does not represent the views of any particular denomination.)

To the current writer it is abundantly clear that the view that Jesus is God, co-equal to the Father, which dominated the church over the centuries, must be nuanced, for in the form in which it is often expressed, it contradicts the Bible.

As discussed above, in the centuries after Christ the church struggled to explain who Jesus is.  The current writer suspects that it is sin to go beyond what the Bible teaches about Jesus, for we are dealing with infinity, and infinity by definition will always remain an infinity, even after we have lived for a hundred thousand million years.  There are things we just cannot understand..  The efforts to explains the Father, Son and Holy Spirit as a Trinity may therefore be sin, for it goes beyond what the Bible teaches.  And my own hypothesis may be sin.

Articles in the series: Is Jesus God?

1.     The three views of the Son
2.    Jesus existed prior to His birth in the form of God.
3.    Jesus in Colossians
4.    Did Jesus empty Himself of equality with God?  Current article
5.    Who is the Word in John 1:1?
6.    Jesus is not God.
7.    God is the Head of Christ.
8.    In the Bible Jesus is called God.
9.    He is the Only Begotten Son of God.
10.  God created all things through His Son.
11.  We must worship Jesus.
12.  Jesus has equality with God.
13. 
Who is Jesus? – Summary of the series of articles
14.  Where do we find Jesus in the Old Testament?

7 Replies to “Philippians 2: Jesus had equality with God, but emptied Himself of it.”

  1. Jesus prayed: our father in heaven hallowed by your name, so what is the name of the father so that we can hallowed it?

    1. Hi Joel
      It is not recorded in the Bible that Jesus ever prayed using those exact word; He taught His disciples to pray like that. But I can quite imagine that Jesus used those words in prayer.

      Secondly, we do not hallow His name. His name represents Him. We revere Him.

      But you probably asked this question in this context because “God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name” (Phil. 2:9). I would say that that name is ruler over all, because the consequence is that “every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord” (v11).

  2. Hallo Andries

    Dankie vir jou website. Hoe verstaan jy die Ligaam van Jesus. Sy vlees en bloed as mens was dit die selfde as Adam? Dit maak nie vir my sin nie want dan was hy stof en soos Adam. As ek na die bybel kyk dan praat dit bv van ‘in the likeness of flesh’ etc

    Ek behoort ook nie aan enige kerk denominasie nie my getuienis is baie dieselfde as joune.

    Groete in Jesus
    Marthinus Hattingh

    Port Elizabeth

    1. Hi Marthinus, You ask whether Jesus’ body was flesh and blood like Adam’s. John wrote that the one that denies that Jesus came “in the flesh” is the antichrist (2 John 1:7). I would therefore say yes, but there is a difference. The Bible teaches that Jesus was without sin (Heb. 4:15). On the other hand, through the sin of Adam sin and death spread to all people (Rom. 5:12). In my view this means that Jesus was not Adam’s physical descendant. And Mary was His surrogate mother; not His natural mother. Jesus did not inherit the degenerated DNA from Mary. He was perfect, like Adam also was in the beginning. But how the One, through who God created all things (Col. 1:16), could become a human being, I do not know.

  3. This is true and correct and one of the BEST written articles I have seen.

    Jesus is NOT GOD, but the SON of His ONE TRUE GOD, John 10:36, John 17:3.

    GOD bless ANDRIES VAN NIEKERK for this great article.

  4. BEWARE OF FALSE TEACHINGS LIKE THESE, JESUS CHRIST IS GOD. YOU GUYS ARE JUST MISINTERPRETING EVERYTHING. N0.1 the dictionary definition of equality is the FACT of being EQUAL.

    No.2 Jesus gave up his divinity and became a bondservant in the process being subject to God the Father that’s why He thinks of His Father as greater than Him because He WILLINGLY became subjected to him though they were equal. That is why Paul the apostle wrote we should be like Jesus and humble ourselves. Jesus had to humble Himself in the first place because he was equal with the Father or He won’t have had to humble himself at all. He gave up his divinity and became mortal so He became under the Father and walked by the Spirit. He was tempted by the devil though God cannot be tempted due to his human limitations and also during his transfiguration, his face shone like the sun showing his Godlike form. He came of no reputation and was made poor sa me may be rich. This is why the Father has highly exalted him and given him the name which is above every name that at the name of JESUS every knee will bow and every tongue will confess JESUS CHRIST is LORD to the glory of God the Father. See that even now in heaven Jesus Christ serves the Father and because Jesus was WILLINGLY made of no reputation and gave up his divinity, Jesus was given his glory and honor back to Him by the Father and was made Lord of all by God the Father. Notice before Jesus came He shared equality with God by himself and that was not given to him by anyone but after giving it up for to be a bondservant and after his resurrection, Jesus Christ was honoured by the Father and given power, glory, dominion and made Lord over all worthy of worship. The Father gave him all these and Jesus was not left empty. He is also worshipped in heaven and it says no one must worship any other God but Him and no creation in heaven, on earth, no creation created is meant to be worshipped but God Almighty not even the angels as said by Paul and also said by the angel in revelations when John attempted to worship him. Other verses which say Jesus is God are:

    But to the Son He says: “Your throne, O God, is forever and ever; A scepter of righteousness is the scepter of Your kingdom. You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness; Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You With the oil of gladness more than Your companions.” And: “You, Lord , in the beginning laid the foundation of the earth, And the heavens are the work of Your hands. They will perish, but You remain; And they will all grow old like a garment; Like a cloak You will fold them up, And they will be changed. But You are the same, And Your years will not fail.”
    Hebrews 1:8‭-‬12 NKJV
    https://bible.com/bible/114/heb.1.8-12.NKJV

    So obviously Jesus is called God in hebrews 1:8-12. The Holy Spirit is also God because in the bible it says: the same Spirit who raised Christ from the dead dwells in us and we know through the scriptures God raised Jesus Christ from the dead. So the Father and the Holy Spirit worked hand in hand ( as one ) for the ressurection of Jesus Christ to take place. Also in acts of the apostles, lying to the Holy Spirit was the same as lying to God , said by the apostle Peter. He is also a person as He is distinguished from the Father and Son many times. He can be grieved, and he can speak as shown in the bible. All three are One God as in 1×1×1=1 not 1+1+1=3. I hope I’ve been able to convince you Jesus Christ is God and is also under the Father who has given him all things as in the beginning and even more having giving him authority to judge the world and crowned him King of kings and Lord of lords and He is also called Alpha and Omega the beginning and the end and no one except GOD ALMIGHTY can bear all those names. Jesus is mostly confused not to be God because Jesus has a God ( “the God of our Lord Jesus Christ the Father of Glory” ) which is the Father. He is God and has a Father which is his and our God. This is because He became a servant of God and even now in heaven He is under God the Father though given everything back and even more. And also Jesus said we should follow his footsteps and be like him. So as Jesus worshipped God we ought to. Also notice that throughout his stay on earth He never asked of worship to Him but to the Father. They only worshipped him out of their own will and even then did not shun them nor say its blasphemy. Now the Father has given Jesus the authority to be worshipped by all creatures. So we pray to God the Father, through the Son ( because He is our eternal high priest and intercedes for us so we pray using His name Jesus ) and with the power of the Holy Spirit. Jesus also said they should baptize in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit and not in the name of an angel, a person, of the Father alone nor of the Son only nor the Holy Spirit solely but all three, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit as One God.

    God bless.

    1. Dear Shiloh

      The beginning of your comment is somewhat different from the end. In the beginning you strongly oppose my views, but in the end you seem to be a bit more accommodating.

      Many people simply barricade themselves behind worn out clichés, but you seem to be open to learn. Nevertheless, I would like to take issue with your views.

      Your position is that Jesus said that the Father is greater than Himself because He (Jesus) gave up His divinity.

      Firstly, where does it say that Jesus gave up His divinity? He gave up His equality with God, which is the opposite of saying that He gave up His divinity. If Jesus had equality with God, then He is not God, but equal to God. Similarly, when the Bible says that Jesus is the image of the invisible God, then Jesus is not God; but the image of God. On the other hand, to say that He gave up His divinity, means that He is God. Although I struggle with the idea that God can give up His divinity.

      We use the words divinity, deity and God to easily. We need to define these terms. “Most High” is a title which the Bible uses from time to time for the Father. When the Bible says that Jesus had equality with God, or that Jesus is the image of the invisible God, then the Bible uses the title “God” for the Most High exclusively.

      Secondly, when you say that Jesus is equal to God, what do you do with Paul’s statement that God is the head of Christ, just like Christ is the head of every man (1 Cor. 11:3)? And what do you do with the many statements in the Bible that Jesus received all things from the Father?

      When people say that Jesus is God; co-equal with the Father they usually mean or imply that Jesus is the ultimate Source of all. That is not true. You admit that the Father (the Most High) gave Jesus all things. For instance, the Father has given all judgment to the Son. That does not refer to His life on earth, while He was emptied of the form of God. It refer to all time. Jesus therefore cannot equal to the Most High (the Father). But Jesus has equality with the Most High as far as status and our worship and admiration is concerned.

      You say that Jesus became mortal. That implies that He was immortal before. It is clear that you know our Bible. I am sure you are aware that only the One “whom no man has seen or can see” is “immortal” (1 Tim. 6:16). Everybody else receive their immortality from Him. That applies even to Jesus. And how can a being that is immortal become mortal? Then He was never immortal.

      You say, and I quote, Jesus “was made Lord of all by God the Father.” I agree with that statement, but does that not prove that Jesus is subordinate to the Father?

      You say that nobody gave Jesus His equality with God in the first place. I assume you have not read the article “Jesus is subordinate to God.” That article provides ample evidence that Jesus received all things from the Father. Colossians say that it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him (1:19). In 2:9 it is called “the fullness of Deity.”

      You also say that Jesus is worshiped in heaven. I agree with you, but Jesus is worshiped because God gave Jesus a name above all names. Furthermore, He is worshiped to the glory of God. In other words, to worship Jesus is to worship God.

      I agree that Jesus is called God in Hebrews, but the very next verse says that God is Jesus’ God. We must be more careful. We often fail to define the title “God.” It can and it is used even of created beings. I am not saying that Jesus is a created being, for He is not. I agree that Jesus is God in the way that Hebrews describe Jesus as God. It just depends on what we mean by the title “God.”

      You say that “no one except GOD ALMIGHTY can bear all those names.” “Almighty” is a term that is used about 27 times in the Bible, of which 9 are in Revelation. In one of those we read, “I saw no temple in it, for the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb are its temple” (21:22). This makes a distinction between God and the Lamb, which means that “God” refers to the Father exclusively. It also identifies God as “the Almighty,” which means that Jesus is not “the Almighty.”

      Shiloh, I have read your comments carefully because it is important for me to get it right. I am just an old man working alone, with no connections with any church or denomination. Bible study is my passion and hobby. In my estimation, you still repeat some of the traditional clichés. Given your knowledge of Scriptures I assume you are a Bible teacher. In my view you and people like you must really throw away your traditional interpretations and what you have been taught in Bible colleges, and learn to read the Bible without pre-conceived ideas.

      The danger of your selective analysis of the Bible is that it allows groups like Jehovah’s witnesses to obtain a foothold. They emphasize one set of texts and you emphasize a different set of texts. You are both wrong. To find the truth we need to find a solution that satisfy all the texts.
      Regards

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