JESUS CHRIST IS GOD (part 11)
“It is a common Scriptural usage to present solemn truths or warnings in groups of three or four (cf. Prov. 30, Amos 1:3,6,9,13 etc.), the visions of the butler and baker in Genesis 40, the combination of the words of Christ in Matthew 12:40 (cf. Gen 15:5; Isa 55:10,11;). It is in accord with Biblical usage, therefore, to expect that in 1 John 5, the formula ‘there are three that bear witness’ will be repeated at least twice (cf. Matt 6:10). The text of 1 John 5:7 is most Christ-honoring. It shows His Deity and Unity in the Godhead. The Lord Jesus Himself said we would know the truth from the witness and guidance of the Spirit Who would show us Christ’s Deity and glorify Him: John 16:13-15: ‘Howbeit when He, THE SPIRIT OF TRUTH, is come, He WILL GUIDE YOU INTO ALL TRUTH: for He shall not speak of Himself; but whatsoever He shall hear, that shall He speak: and He will show you things to come. HE SHALL GLORIFY ME: for He shall receive of Mine, and shall show it unto you. ALL THINGS THAT THE FATHER HATH ARE MINE: therefore said I, that HE SHALL TAKE OF MINE, AND SHALL SHOW IT UNTO YOU’.” Notice how, in this passage, we have the three Personages of God. We have the Son instructing concerning the Holy Spirit and the Father: “…when He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth…” The Holy Spirit will glorify God the Son, “…He shall glorify Me…”. And we see how the things of the Father are the things of the Son which the Holy Spirit shall take and show unto His disciples: “ALL THINGS THAT THE FATHER HATH ARE MINE: therefore said I, that HE SHALL TAKE OF MINE, AND SHALL SHOW IT UNTO YOU”. “Jesus does not mention the things of the Father, only His own; nor was there any necessity for it, because whatever is His, is the Father's, and whatever the Father has is His: they are jointly concerned in every thing relating to the salvation, benefit, comfort, and happiness of the saints; so that when the Spirit of God takes of the things of the one, He takes of the things of the other, and discovers, and applies them.” 1 John 5:6-11: ‘…And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth. For there are three that bear record in Heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one. If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater: for this is the witness of God which He hath testified of His Son. He that believeth on the Son of God hath the Witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made Him a liar; because He believeth not the record that God gave of His Son. And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in His Son’.
“The Providential Protection of the reading by God: Our confidence in the Word of God must ultimately rest upon the truth of the Providential Preservation of Holy Scripture, a truth taught in the Bible itself. We begin with the presupposition that God has preserved His Word; because He said that He would: consider the following verses in the Book of Psalms alone: ‘The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, Thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever’ (Psa. 12:6,7); ‘For ever, O LORD, Thy Word is settled in Heaven’ (Psa. 119:89 cf. Psa. 119:160). The promise of God was that He would preserve His Word in His Church — ‘As for Me, this is My covenant with them, saith the LORD; My Spirit that is upon thee, and My words which I have put in thy mouth, shall not depart out of thy mouth, nor out of the mouth of thy seed, nor out of the mouth of thy seed's seed, saith the LORD, from henceforth and for ever’ (Isa.59:21). Therefore, we believe that the true text of Holy Scripture is that which has been passed down through the generations of God’s believing people who have preserved the faith of the Gospel. This authentic text may not at every point be found in a majority of surviving manuscripts. Remember Origen and those that he influenced, like Eusebeus, did not believe in the Trinity or the Deity of Jesus Christ. They cut I John 5:7 out of the Bible early on in Christian history because he hated the Doctrine of the Trinity. But what man cuts out, God can put back in. They did what King Jehoiakim had done in Jeremiah 36: God gave His Word to Jeremiah: ‘And it came to pass in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah, that this word came unto Jeremiah from the LORD, saying, Take thee a roll of a book, and write therein all the words that I have spoken unto thee against Israel, and against Judah, and against all the nations, from the day I spake unto thee, from the days of Josiah, even unto this day’ (v. 1,2); Jeremiah dictated it to Baruch who wrote it down: ‘Then Jeremiah called Baruch the son of Neriah: and Baruch wrote from the mouth of Jeremiah all the words of the LORD, which he had spoken unto him, upon a roll of a book’ (v. 4); Jehoiakim heard the Word, didn’t like it and burned it: ‘So the king sent Jehudi to fetch the roll: and he took it out of Elishama the scribe's chamber. And Jehudi read it in the ears of the king, and in the ears of all the princes which stood beside the king. Now the king sat in the winterhouse in the ninth month: and there was a fire on the hearth burning before him. And it came to pass, that when Jehudi had read three or four leaves, he cut it with the penknife, and cast it into the fire that was on the hearth, until all the roll was consumed in the fire that was on the hearth’ (v. 2-23); God had the same thing rewritten again: ‘Then the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah, after that the king had burned the roll, and the words which Baruch wrote at the mouth of Jeremiah, saying, Take thee again another roll, and write in it all the former words that were in the first roll, which Jehoiakim the king of Judah hath burned’ (v. 27,28).The same thing has happened with 1 John 5:7. The Greek speaking Arians didn’t like it so they cut it out of the Greek Bible, but God returned it to its rightful place.
“EVALUATION OF EVIDENCE FOR THE COMMA: After examining 1) the Latin and Greek manuscript evidence, 2) the citations and documentation by the church fathers and others, 3) the grammatical evidence and 4) the doctrinal evidence, we should be able to come to a logical conclusion. Let’s put the evidence to the ‘Tests of Truth for New Testament Criticism’. 1) Antiquity: We have the testimony of the Old Latin Version as early as AD 157, Tertullian around AD 200, Cyprian around AD 250, and on the Greek side Codex Wizanburgensis from the 8th century, and 88 from the twelfth century. The Comma passes this test. 2) Consent of Witnesses: There is consent of Latin witness throughout history, as well as several Greek witnesses. 3) Variety of Evidence: There are various witnesses (i.e. MSS, versions, Fathers, lectionaries, etc.) from a variety of locations (N. Africa, Italy, Asia) which qualifies the Comma. 4) Respectability of Witnesses, or Weight: Tertullian, the Waldenses, Cyprian, and the orthodox African writers are all credible. 5) Continuity, or Unbroken Tradition: The reading appears consistently throughout history from AD 150 to 1500. Pass. 6) Credibility of Opposing Evidence: The manuscripts, circumstances and many of the people of the opposing side are suspicious or not credible altogether. 1 John 5:7 passes again. 7) Internal Considerations, or Reasonableness: The elementary Greek grammar is deficient without 1 John 5:7, and fundamental Bible doctrines suffer without it. The so called Comma passes again! CONCLUSION: Finally, it cannot be overly stressed that the successive editors of the Textus Receptus could have omitted the passage from their editions. The fact that Stephens, Beza, and the Elzevirs retained the Pericope, despite the reluctance of Erasmus to include it, is not without significance. The hard fact is that, by the providence of God, the Johannie comma obtained and retained a place in the Textus Receptus. We emphatically declare that the most extreme caution should be exercised in questioning its right to that place.”
Volumes have been written defending the Scriptural status of 1 John 5:7. There is also abundant and unanswerable evidence which reveals, at the very least, the highly questionable motives and methods of men such as Westcott and Hort upon whose perverted Greek text most modern Bible ‘versions’ are based. But this book is not written in an effort to examine every claim made by these men and others who are in agreement with them. This book is written to show the Scriptural veracity of the fact that Jesus Christ is God, and, therefore, that the Trinity is a most Godly teaching. This author does, however, encourage further examination of articles and books which have been written exposing Messrs. Westcott and Hort, and others who have promoted and popularized highly questionable versions of Scripture from corrupt texts which blatantly attack major doctrines such as the Trinity and the atonement of the Lord Jesus Christ principally by changing and even omitting major Bible verses.
When all is said and done, the doctrine of the Trinity does not stand or fall on whether 1 John 5:7 is Holy Scripture or not. The fact remains that the Trinity is taught throughout the Scriptures from Genesis to Revelation, and, as we have seen, in the creation itself. “Fully understanding the Trinity may be impossible, but proving that the Trinity is Scriptural is not an especially difficult task. One needs only to define the Trinity accurately, then show that the Bible teaches the details of the definition. It makes no difference whether the word ‘Trinity’ appears in the text or not.” Likewise, the fact that the four Gospels never once refer to Jesus using the word ‘grace’, does not deny the truth that He, nevertheless, clearly taught the principle of grace “Ye have not chosen Me, but I have chosen you…” (Jn. 15:16 cf. Matt. 18:21-35; Lk. 15:11-32 cf. 2 Cor. 12:9). Particular words do not matter as long as the principle of a doctrine is clearly taught. “What matters is that the doctrine is taught in the Word of God. The definition of the Trinity is straightforward: there is only one God and He subsists as three distinct Persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. One God in three Persons. Simple. If you want to prove the Trinity, then, all you need to do is show that three specific truths are taught in Scripture. First, there is only one God. Second, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are truly distinct Persons. Third, each has the essential attribute of Deity.
“The first item—the oneness of God—is virtually uncontested by those challenging the Trinity on Scriptural grounds. Almost all who hold Scripture in high regard acknowledge the famous Shema of Deuteronomy 6:4: ‘Hear, O Isreal: The LORD our God is one LORD’. The second, that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are truly distinct Persons, is denied by modalists like Oneness Pentecostals. They hold there is one God who manifests Himself in different ‘modes’ at different times, sometimes as the Father and sometimes as the Son. The popular illustration of the Trinity that a man can be a father to his son yet, in other modes, a husband to his wife and a brother to his siblings is a fine illustration of this second-century heresy, and not the orthodox doctrine of the Trinity. In this view the Father and the Son are both fully God, but there is no genuine distinction between the Persons, only a linguistic distinction. The third, that the distinct Persons are each fully God, is denied by Arians like ‘Jehovah’s Witnesses’. Jesus and the Father are distinct persons, they say, but do not share the essential attribute of Deity. Only the Father is God. Jesus is a lesser, created ‘god’.
“The Irrefutable Argument: My purpose is to answer the Arian challenge by giving an airtight, Scriptural proof for the Deity of Jesus Christ. This technique, touched on earlier, is so simple you should be able to sketch it out on a sheet of paper. Remember, you don’t have to master every counter-argument to every verse thrown at you. All you need is one unequivocal textual proof to make your case for the Deity of Jesus Christ. It comes from the Gospel of John. Most discussions of this nature focus initially on John 1:1 which says, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God’. That’s the way the King James Bible reads. But the ‘Jehovah’s Witnesses’ New World Translation renders the verse this way: ‘In the beginning the Word was, and the Word was with God, and the Word was a god’. The heated discussion that follows is almost never productive. Don’t waste your time wrestling with Greek grammar neither of you understand. Just drop down two verses. Verse three says, ‘All things were made by Him [the Word], and without Him was not any thing made that was made’. The NWT is virtually the same: ‘All things came into existence through him, and apart from him not even one thing came into existence’…take out a piece of paper and draw a large box, explaining that this box represents everything that exists. Run a line right through the middle of the box, dividing everything that exists into two categories. It will look something like this:
On the left side write ‘all things that never came into being’, that is, all things that exist but have never been created.
Ask, ‘What goes in that box?’ If he says ‘God’ he got the right answer. God is the only thing or entity that exists that has never been created. God alone is eternal and uncreated. Put the word ‘God’ in the left-hand side of your box.
Now label the right side ‘all things that came into being’, that is, all created things.
Write ‘all created things’ there.
Everything in this box was created through Jesus, according to verse three. Ask your friend if he understands that. Now write ‘created through Jesus’ outside the box and run an arrow to the right side.
Take a moment to point out to your guest how this illustration is structured. The larger box includes everything there is, was or ever will be. Each particular existent falls into one of two categories: created or not created. According to the law of excluded middle either a thing was created or it wasn’t created—there is no third option—so the categories are all-encompassing. According to the law of non-contradiction a thing cannot be both created and not created, so the categories are mutually exclusive. Any particular thing has to be one or the other. It’s very simple. Next you’re going to determine what category Jesus belongs in. Take a coin out of your pocket. Tell your guest this coin represents Jesus Christ. Hand him the coin and ask him to place Jesus in the category where He belongs.
The first impulse of a ‘Jehovah’s Witness’, (or anyone who does not believe in the Deity of Jesus, but that He was a created being), of course, is to place Jesus in the category of ‘all things that came into being’ because that’s what their theology dictates. In keeping with the teaching of Arius in the early fourth century, there was a time ‘when the Word was not’. Jesus was the first created being and everything else was created by Jehovah through Jesus. But John 1:3 does not allow that option. Look at the wording carefully. John says, ‘All things were made by Him [the Word], and without Him was not any thing made that was made’, or in the NWT, ‘…and apart from him not even one thing came into existence’. John says the same thing two different ways for emphasis and clarity: everything that ever came into being owes its existence to Jesus, Who caused it all to happen. If Jesus caused all created things to come into existence, then He must have existed before all created things came into existence. Therefore, the Word could not have been created. In other words, if Jesus created everything that has come into being, and Jesus also came into being (as they contend), then Jesus created Himself. He would have to exist as Creator before He existed as a created thing, which is absurd. Therefore, Jesus can’t be placed in the square labelled, ‘all things that came into being’. As a side note. Much is made of the Greek word dia, translated ‘by’ in the first phrase, but can also be translated ‘through’. But it makes no difference whether all things were created ‘by’ Jesus or ‘through Jesus with Jehovah as the agency (as the ‘Witnesses’ suggest). The point is that in either case Jesus is existing before the creation of all things that ever came into being. So, the coin cannot be placed on the right. At this point your visitor may want to place Jesus somewhere on the paper outside the larger box. But, as we’ve seen, you can’t do that. These categories are all-encompassing and mutually exclusive; there is no ‘place’ outside to put Him. Everything goes on one side of the larger box or the other. If Jesus can’t be placed on the right side with created things, then He must go on the left with uncreated things, identifying Jesus as the uncreated Creator. JESUS CHRIST IS GOD!”
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God…” Even omitting, what is to some the controversial end of this first verse of John 1 — “and the Word was God” — we see that the verse clearly states that in the very beginning Jesus Christ (the Word) was with God. There is no hint of any so-called second beginning, as some have speculated. Even a small child can see and understand the reality of there being only one beginning to anything. Even if there was a second beginning — after Jesus had allegedly been ‘created’ — as some insist, this verse can in no way be referring to it, for it simply states “THE beginning”. If there was a second beginning the apostle John certainly knew nothing of it. There is one beginning and no other. All things proceed after a beginning, from the beginning. The beginning preceded the creation, all of creation, therefore, that which was before the beginning is eternal, and it must have always been eternal. So, only anything or anyone before the beginning, present at the beginning, must be God, and all that came after the beginning must have been created by the pre-existent God, and, therefore, not God. “In the beginning” is speaking of before the first of any creative act. The Bible begins with the words, “In the beginning God created…” (Gen. 1:1). God was before the beginning, creation followed after the beginning. The Word was with God because “the Word was God” and “was in the beginning with God” (Jn. 1:1,2). The wording here, “was God” and “was…with God” may only be understood and made sense of through the Doctrine of the blessed Trinity. The Word, Jesus Christ, was present at the beginning because He preceded the beginning because He is God. Only God precedes creation. “‘From the beginning’, as the evangelist says in 1John 1:1; it is as though he said that the Word did not begin to have His being when God began to make all that was made: for the Word was even then when all things that were made began to be made, and therefore He was before the beginning of all things.” Christ the Lord had to have preceded the beginning of all things, for all things that were made were made through Him. To have made all things means Jesus was before all things that were made. The Creator comes before the creation. The Lord Jesus did not begin to be after God began to create, because all things were created by Jesus: “All things were made by Him; and without Him WAS NOT ANY THING MADE THAT WAS MADE” (Jn. 1:3). If it was made Jesus made it! Anything that was made was made by Him, therefore, HE WAS NOT MADE! Before the beginning was eternity, therefore, anything or anyone who existed before the beginning, evidenced by their being present at the beginning, was, and is, eternal. God is the only eternal one, therefore, the only one eternal is God (see Psa. 90:1-4; Ex. 3:13,14; Psa. 100:5; Eph. 3:10,11; Jn. 8:58; Rev. 1:8; Isa. 57:15). “The eternal God is thy refuge…Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen” (1 Tim. 1:17). The beginning was preceded only by that which is eternal. The Son said to the Father: “And now, O Father, glorify Thou Me with Thine own self with the glory which I had with Thee before the world was” (Jn. 17:5). “In the beginning God” “In the beginning was the Word” (Gen. 1:1 & Jn. 1:1). In the beginning was the Word…and God. Are these two different Gods? No, for the remainder of John 1:1 states “the WORD was GOD”. They are the same Entity. The Word could not have been created because He was the Creator of everything that was made, Who existed before the beginning signified by His being present at the very beginning, antecedent to any creative act. The WORD was ETERNAL = The WORD was GOD! “The evangelist adds, that the Word was God: that is, the person or subsistence spoken of and intended by him was the Divine Being, which is but one; though in it there be three distinct subsistences, all make but one and the same Divine Being. The first thing spoken in the Gospel of John of Christ Jesus attributes to Him eternity; the second speaks of His relation to the Father; this speaks the oneness and sameness of His essence with that of the Father. The term God, which in the foregoing words is to be taken personally for God the Father, is here to be taken essentially, as it signifieth the Divine Being.”
“I have only come across two rejoinders to this proof for Jesus’ Deity. Each is so weak it merely serves to bolster our argument. Rejoinder #1 ‘Wait a minute. You didn’t read the verse carefully. You missed something in the text. Notice the phrase ‘without Him’. The apostle excludes Jesus from the count in this verse. If you said, ‘Without Billy, the whole family is going to Disneyland’ you wouldn’t mean that Billy wasn’t part of the family, just that he wasn’t included in the count. Every member of the family is going to Disneyland with the exception of Billy. In the same way, every created thing was created by Jesus with the exception of Jesus Himself. Jehovah created Jesus first, then Jesus created everything else’. Note that this rebuttal turns on the ability to replace ‘without Him’ with the phrase ‘excluding Jesus’. Allegedly they’re synonymous. OK, let’s try the replacement and see what happens. The verse then looks like this: ‘With the exception of Jesus, was not anything made that was made’. If your brow is furrowed trying to figure this out, I’m not surprised. The reconstructed phrase is nearly nonsense. Strictly speaking, it means that Jesus is the only created thing that exists. Read it again and see for yourself. Obviously, the phrase ‘Without Him’ can’t mean ‘with the exception of Jesus’. These phrases are not synonymous. ‘without Him’ means something entirely different. It means ‘apart from His agency’. It’s the same as saying, ‘Apart from me you’ll never get to San Diego. I’ve got the car’. Apart from Jesus’ agency nothing came into being that has come into being. Why? BECAUSE JESUS IS THE CREATOR. HE IS GOD. That makes perfect sense in the context.” If Jesus was a created being, then He would have had to exist prior to His creation. It would mean that Jesus was existent prior to His own existence so that He could create Himself! Obvious nonsense. The original Greek text has “All things through Him came to be and apart from Him came to be not even one thing which has come to be”. All would agree that apart from God nothing was created that was created, so why the problem with the equally accurate teaching that without Jesus nothing was made that was made. Being the Creator excludes Jesus from being one that was created.
If nothing that was made could not have been made without Jesus, then Jesus came before anything was made. Anyone who came before anything that was made has to be the Eternal One: God Almighty, ergo, Jesus is God. Nothing could have come into being without Jesus, for without Him nothing came into being. Nothing came into being without Jesus, therefore, THE FACT THAT Jesus created all things proves that He was not amongst that which He created, for HE IS THE VERY CREATOR OF ALL THAT WAS CREATED. Nothing that was created was created without Jesus, therefore, if Jesus was created He must have been involved in His own creation, brought Himself into existence before He existed! Moreover, He would have to have been involved in the so-called second beginning also. It would have been impossible for anything to have been made without God or Jesus. Therefore, Jesus must be God. Those who say God created Jesus and then created every thing else that was created through Jesus, fail to see the light of God’s truth which clearly states with an unequivocal and unconditional “NOTHING” was created without Jesus. If there was a so-called ‘second beginning’ would it not have required creation? If this second beginning needed to be created, it, too, was something which would have been created by Jesus. There is no hint in John 1:3 that Jesus was created, nor is there any such lie found in the whole of Scripture. He cannot be a lesser god, a created god, for Scripture declares that nothing was created without Jesus Himself. If Jesus was created, then according to the Scriptures He would have been involved in His own creation. Therefore one would have to concur with the equally nonsensical proposition that before anything was created Jesus was created. Jesus was created before anything was created that could not have been created without Him, is sheer full-blown madness. The Lord Jesus CANNOT be a created ‘minor’ or ‘lesser’ god, for God Himself states emphatically that “…before Me THERE WAS NO GOD FORMED, neither shall there be after Me” (Isa. 43:10). There is no other God but God. God is eternal, therefore, how could Jesus have been created when even prior to eternity—if such a thing were possible—there was no God/god formed. These words of God show that idols formed by the imaginations and hands of men were certainly not formed before God’s existence. If Jesus is a lesser, or minor god then according to Isaiah 43:10 He was not formed by man, nor could He have been created by God, before God or after God. Jesus is the Creator. “The gods of the heathens neither had a being before Me, nor shall continue after Me: wherein more is understood than is expressed, that whereas the Lord is God from everlasting to everlasting, these false pretenders to the Deity are but of yesterday, and shall shortly be abolished. And withal He calleth them formed gods, in way of contempt, and to show the ridiculousness of their pretence to the Divinity, which are formed by the hands of men. In short, the sense is, there is no other God beside Him.” “Strictly, of course, the idea is ‘before any god was formed I existed’. The form of expression might be derived from the Babylonian cosmology, according to which the gods were the first beings to emerge from the primeval chaos. The following words occur in the Chaldæan account of creation: ‘When of the gods none had yet arisen, when none named a name or [determined] fate; then were the [great] gods formed’ (Schrader, Cuneiform Inscriptions on Genesis 1:1). It is probably to this origin of the gods themselves that reference is made, rather than to the formation of their images (cf. Isa. 44:9).” “In clear, certain words, God says that not only is He the most High God, but that there are no other Gods beside Him. There are no ‘junior gods’. There are no ‘second class gods’. There was no God formed before the LORD, and there will be no God formed after Him.” The Lord Jesus says this of Himself: “…I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last…” (Rev. 1:11 cf. Isa. 44:6; 1 Jn. 2:13; Rev. 22:13; 21:6). The Lord Jesus “…is eternal in His existence…The Bible makes it abundantly clear that there never was a time when the Second Person in the Godhead did not exist (cf. Mic. 5:2; Isa. 9:6; Jn. 1:1; 8:58)”.
Those who have misunderstood 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” , and use it to bolster their false claims that Jesus was the first created being, have got it drastically wrong. “Revelation 3:14 does not at all suggest that Jesus was the first of God’s created ones; rather, it stresses His role as Creator. The Greek word for ‘beginning’ is arche, which, in this context indicates ‘that by which anything begins to be, the origin, active cause’ (Thayer, 77). A.T. Robertson called arche ‘the originating Source of the creation’. “Jesus is not the first creature that God made, but the FIRST CAUSE of the creation; the first Parent, producer, and efficient cause of every creature; the author of the old creation, Who made all things out of nothing in the beginning of time; and of the new creation, the everlasting Father of, everyone that is made a new creature; the Father of the world to come, or of the new age and Gospel dispensation; the Maker of the new heaven and new earth; and so a very fit person to be the Judge of the whole world, to summon all nations before Him, and pass the final sentence on them.” “The beginning (the origination) of the creation of God. — This title of our Lord does not occur in the Epistles to the other churches in Revelation, but very closely resembles the language used by Paul in writing to the Colossians, ‘Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: For by Him were all things created, 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: And He is before all things, and by Him all things consist. And He is the head of the body, the church: Who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things He might have the preeminence’ (Col. 1:15-18). The ‘beginning’, not meaning that Christ was the first among the created, but that He was the origination, or primary source, the active principle, of all creation. By Him were all things made (see Jn. 1:1-3), not with Him, but BY Him creation began. In short, the word ‘beginning’ (like the word ‘faithful’) must be understood in an active sense. The Lord Jesus has originating power (see Acts 3:14) as well as priority of existence. The appropriateness of its use will be seen when we remember that the Laodicean Church was exposed to the temptation of worshipping inferior principalities (see Col. 1:16; 2:15, where the plural of the word here rendered ‘beginning’, or origin, is used, and is translated ‘principalities’).” “Jesus Christ is the Author, Head, and Ruler of the creation of God, the Beginner of all creation, its originating instrument — as αρχη της κτισεως (beginning of creation) evidently here signifies. The Person by Whom the Father created all things, (see Heb. 1:2; Eph. 3:9; Jn. 1:3). As the Source, or Author of all creation, Christ cannot Himself be a created being.” Young’s Literal Translation has it “the chief of the creation of God”. "God cannot duplicate Himself in a creature and make it into a nature like Himself, because all creatures are non eternal and God is the only eternal Being." The non-eternal can never be God. No part of creation, therefore, no created being, was used to create, or was a part of the creation process. IF IT WAS CREATED IT IS NOT GOD, AND IF IT IS GOD HE WAS NOT CREATED. There is the Creator—the One Who created—and His creation. The Creator was not created, and so, no creature is God. The Creator is eternal, the creature is non-eternal. Nothing was created without the Lord Jesus Christ, therefore, Jesus can only be the Creator and not part of that which was created. Only that which was beyond creation, before creation, outside of creation could ever have been responsible for creation.
One Scripture, among many, which makes the fact that Jesus is the eternal One—that He could never have come into being, never have been created—transparently clear, is Micah 5:2: “But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall He come forth unto Me that is to be ruler in Israel; Whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting” (cf. Jn. 7:42; Lk. 1:32; Psa. 2:7; 40:7,8; Jn. 4:34; Matt. 2:6; 3:17; 12:18; Isa. 42:1). Jesus is the eternal God, not a created god. Jesus must be God, for God Himself says, “I am the Lord, and there is none else, there is no God beside Me…” (Isa. 45:5). This shows that Jesus’ eternality reveals Him to be Almighty God Himself. This, along with the following verses, reveals with clear distinction only two possibilities: 1) Jesus is either no god/God at all, or 2) as there is no other God, but God, Jesus the Messiah must be God. God is everlasting, Jesus is everlasting, ergo, Jesus must be God. God asks: “…Is there a God beside Me? Yea, there is no God; I know not any” (Isa. 44:8). There is One God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. No lesser Gods, no greater Gods, but only ONE GOD. So whom do you say Jesus Christ is? The only possible answers are either He is not God, or He is God. If there is only one God then Jesus must be that God, or He is no God/god at all. IF THERE IS NO OTHER GOD BUT ONE, JESUS MUST BE THAT ONE! The Lord Jesus’ goings have been from of old, from EVERLASTING! How could anything, let alone anyone, which has always been ever have had a starting point! How could Jesus have been created IF HE IS THE CREATOR WHO HAS ALWAYS BEEN! “All things were made by Him…For by Him were all things created…” (Jn. 1:3 & Col. 1:16 cf. Jn. 1:10; 1 Cor. 8:6). “The phrases ‘from of old’ and ‘from everlasting’ in Micah 5:2 are expressive of the eternity of Christ’s Divine nature and Person…so as the former part of the text sets forth His human birth, this His Divine generation; which, cause of the excellency and ineffableness of it, is expressed in the plural number, ‘goings forth’. whose ‘goings forth [were] from everlasting’, when as yet the world was not created.” “Whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting" - Literally, ‘from the days of eternity’. ‘Goings forth’ is opposed to ‘going forth’; a ‘going forth out of Bethlehem, to a ‘going forth from eternity’; a ‘going forth’, which then was still to come, (the prophet says, ‘shall go forth’,) to a ‘going forth’ which had been long ago, ‘not from the world but from the beginning, not in the days of time, but from the days of eternity’. For ‘in the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The Same was in the beginning with God’ (Jn. 1:1,2).” This all aligns perfectly with the Lord Jesus being the ‘Father of eternity, the Author of eternal life’ (see Isaiah 9:6).
“In the end of the days, Jesus was to go forth from Bethlehem; but, lest He should be thought then to have had His Being, the prophet adds, His 'goings forth are from everlasting’. Here words, denoting eternity and used of the eternity of God, are united together to impress the belief of the Eternity of God the Son. We have neither thought nor words to conceive eternity; we can only conceive of time lengthened out without end. ‘True eternity is boundless life, all existing at once’, or , ‘to duration without beginning and without end and without change’ (see Psa. 55:19; 90:2; Prov. 8:23; Hab. 1:12).” “But ‘God of old is the Eternal God’ (see Deut. 33:27. ‘He that abideth of old’ (Psa. 55:19) is God enthroned from everlasting. In like manner the ‘goings forth’ here, opposed to a ‘going forth’ in time, (emphatic words being moreover united together,) are a going forth in eternity.” “The plain antithesis of the clause, ‘yet out of thee shall He come forth’ (from Beth-lehem), shows that the eternal generation of the Son is meant. The terms convey the strongest assertion of infinite duration of which the Hebrew language is capable (cf. Psa. 90:2; Prov. 8:22, 23; Jn. 1:1).” The original Hebrew states: ‘…and goings forth of Him from aforetime from days of eon’. “Messiah's generation as man coming forth unto God to do His will on earth is from Beth-lehem; but as Son of God, His goings forth are from everlasting.” Some other Scriptures which testify to the eternality of Jesus are: Isaiah 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’; The word everlasting does not merely signify that which has no end, but also that which is without beginning; Col. 1:16,17 – “For by Him were all things created, 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: And He is before all things, and by Him all things consist”; Hebrews 1:8 – “But unto the Son He saith, Thy Throne, O God, is for ever and ever…” Being ‘before all things’ is the unmistakable, distinctive, sign of eternality. Not merely an endlessness of existence, but also of an existence without beginning. Melchizedek, a king and priest of the Most High God (see Gen. 14:18-20; Psa. 110:4; Heb. 5:6-11; 6:20-7:28), was a type of Christ, “…that is, there is no account which shows when he was born, or when he died; and in this he was a type of Christ, Who has no beginning of days, was from the beginning, and in the beginning, and is the beginning, and was from everlasting; as appears from His nature as God, from His names, from His office as Mediator, and from His concern in the council and covenant of peace…” Jesus said: “I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty” (Rev. 1:8). Therefore, from whom else could everything have come, but the Eternal One. Jesus Christ is God.
“The second attempt at refutation of our earlier illustration comes from a handful of more sophisticated Arians who know better than to lean on the bent reed of the first rejoinder. They go back to the opening phrase ‘In the beginning’ and note that it is anarthrous, that is, it has no article in the original Greek. Since John merely writes ‘In beginning’ he could be meaning ‘in a beginning’.” Whenever a phrase such as ‘could be’ or ‘could have’ is used in support of an argument, it must be remembered that phrases such as these have encased within them the equal likelihood of ‘could not be’ or ‘could not have’. There is nothing definite or factual that is ever described as could be. Therefore, it adds absolutely nothing to a discussion but subjective supposition. ‘Could be’ and ‘could have’ are immediately cancelled out by simultaneously implying ‘it could not be’, or ‘it could not have’. When someone says something ‘could’ they are concurrently implying it ‘could not’. ‘It could rain today’ is on an equal footing and just as definite, and indefinite a possibility as ‘it may not rain today’. Virtually, both expressions of thought are as useless as “a concrete parachute”. Simply because a supposition is looked upon optimistically does not give it any weight whatsoever in the real world. Assumptions, or hypotheses, are not admissible when dealing with the matter of fact. “Evidence of an opinion is not admissible to prove the existence of a fact about the existence of which the opinion was expressed.” “Jehovah created Jesus, the story goes, at some indeterminate time in the past. Then after some unspecified second beginning (‘a beginning’), He created everything else through Jesus. The details of John 1:3 apply only to what happens after this ‘second beginning’. That’s the argument. This grasping-at-the-wind is an example of what I call ‘Bedtime Story’. Here the detractor tells a story to put your argument to rest, but like all mere stories there is no foundation in fact. Nothing in the details of the text itself suggests this alternate translation. In fact, even the NWT renders it accurately. Further, it strains at a gnat and swallows a camel. A focus on the gnat in verse one misses the camel two verses later. The phrase ‘all things’ and the term ‘nothing’ in verse three admit of no time restrictions. The only alternate ‘facts’ available are found in the wishful thinking of those whose theology demands another reading. It’s clear from the text that Jesus Christ is God.
“Parrying the Counter-Attack: Objections that Jesus is distinguished from the Father in other passages (as when He prays to the Father in John 17) merely bolster our defense of the Trinity. Agreed, Jesus is not the Father. Jesus can talk to the Father because each is a separate Person, but as Creator, Jesus shares the same Divine essence as the Father. Remember our definition: there is only one God and He subsists as Three distinct Persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Obviously then, we’d expect to find evidence of personal interaction among each of them. Remember, don’t let anyone play ‘What About?’ and drag you all over the New Testament, answering one verse with another. Keep bringing the issue back to John 1:3. All other verses must be understood in light of the unmistakable fact that Jesus is the uncreated Creator. One parting thought. This exercise also resolves the translation controversy of verse one. Is the Word fully God or merely ‘a god’? John’s teaching in verse three makes unmistakable the intent of his opening remark: ‘In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God’ (cf. 1 Jn. 2:13).”
Some say that if there is a Trinity, if Jesus Christ is God, then the Bible is full of contradictions. These alleged contradictions, however, only exist in the minds of those who cannot see the Truth of God. Among the ridiculously weak and infantile ‘arguments’ against the Trinity, and the Deity of Jesus, comes from the mistaken interpretation of verses such as Numbers 23:19: “God is not a man, that He should lie; neither the son of man, that He should repent: hath He said, and shall He not do it? or hath He spoken, and shall He not make it good?” This Scripture verse says “God is not a man” The argument is that "'Jesus was a man', therefore Jesus cannot be God’. This is a classic example of the fallacy of taking a verse out of its context. This is like someone trying to teach atheism from Psalm 14:1 by saying ‘See, even the Bible says 'There is no God’. Numbers 23:19 is not about God saying He's not a man. God is saying, in context, that He is not a liar like humans and He stands by His spoken word.” The original Hebrew reads: “not man El and He is lying and son of human and he is regretting…” God is not like a man nor the offspring of men. His ways are not their ways and His thoughts are not their thoughts (see Isa. 55:8). God does not sin. “The point being made in Numbers 23:19, 1 Samuel 15:29 and Hosea 11:9 is that God does not lie. He is not fickle. His emotions do not change His eternal purposes. This is unlike fallen humanity, who cannot see the big picture, who often breaks promises, and whose feelings often cloud discernment. In other words, the statements that God is not a man are contrasting one aspect of God’s nature with a corresponding part of man’s. Saying, ‘God is not a man’, has nothing to do with whether or not God can ever exist in the flesh. The Old Testament references to God being unlike man do not apply to Jesus’ particular type of humanity. All they are telling us is that God is not a man as we think of men. It is a contrast, not a restriction. There is nothing that logically prevents God from becoming a man in a whole new way—in fact, redemption requires this, and redemption was God’s plan from before the foundation of the world (see Rev. 13:8). Thus, it can be said that God knew He would become a man before Numbers 23:19 was even written! But people still try to use this verse out of context, pretending that the verse stops at ‘God is not a man’, when it continues on to say ‘...that He should lie, nor a son of man, that He should repent’.” It is comparing God with man, not restricting God from being a man. “The argument begins with an erroneous understanding of what the verse is saying from beginning to end. It started out wrong and therefore it ends wrong. You cannot use Numbers 23:19 taken out of context to prove Jesus is not God, just like you cannot prove the Bible teaches atheism by misquoting Psalm 14:1.”
The anti-Trinitarian says “‘Scripture declares no man has seen God (see John 1:18). People saw Jesus the man. Therefore Jesus cannot be God’. Such an argument fails to understand John 1:18 and what it means within the context of a holistic view of the Bible. Moses did see God's ‘back’ according to Scripture (see Ex. 33:20-23). Others have ‘seen’ God in Old Testament times (see Ex. 24:11). Therefore, this passage cannot mean God was never seen at all or in any sense. But the main point that is overlooked is the fact that this passage does not say ‘no one has seen God in human flesh at any time’. The first premise of the anti-trinitarian argument is based on a misinterpretation of the verse and an addition to the verse, i.e., the idea that the passage refers to ‘God in human flesh’. Jesus is revealed as God manifested in the flesh in John 1:1,14 and 1 Timothy 3:16. John 1:18 simply means no one has seen God in the totality of His being as a Spirit, or His ‘face’, if you will. One needs to clearly understand a text before trying to quote it in order to disprove the Deity of Jesus.” Jesus’ own words in John 14:9: “…he that hath seen Me hath seen the Father…” really throws a spanner in the works of anti-trinitarians. “Their argument fails logically and theologically.”