How can Jesus be God but not God?

22 April 2020

Series: Bible study

How can Jesus be God but not God?

In John 1:1, we read, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” In Gen 1:3, we read, ” And God said, Let there be Light, and there was light.”

If you asked most Christians who the Father of Jesus is, they would say “the Father.” We all know “Father” is a title like “Mr.President” is a title and not a name. If we address our Father with a title and not a name, we can easily stumble into heresy because we can then disagree on the nature and personality of our Father. Should we, on the other hand, address our Father with His proper name, we will all know who we are talking about and what He is like. Using our Father’s real name, instead of a title, is proper protection against heresy and idol worship, but it is also a command our Father has given us in His word.

Our Father says in Ex 3:14-15 His name is Yehovah, in Ex 20:2-4 He says we are only allowed to worship Him as our God. In the Gospels, His Son Yeshua, never tells us to worship any other and not even Himself. He always tells us to worship His Father Yehovah, to sanctify and make His Fathers name holy. So from the Gospels, and especially what we call the Lord’s prayer, we learn how important it is to value, appreciate, bless, and worship the name of Yehovah, our Father.

There is, therefore, no question about it, according to the Bible, our God is Yehovah, and if we dont worship and serve Yehovah, we are guilty of idolatry.

So what about His Son, our Savior, and Lord Yeshua?

In John 1:1-3, we see how Yeshua is the word of Yehovah, He was with Yehovah, and He was Yehovah. He is the one who has created all things. So if John 1:1-3 says Yeshua is the word of Yehovah and identifies Him as Yehovah, why then is it wrong to worship Yeshua?

The most straightforward answer to this question is that Yeshua never told us, in the Gospels, to worship Him or to pray to Him. The other answer to this question comes from Genesis 1:3.

We know from John 1:3 Yeshua is the creator of all things, and we know from John 1:1-2 He is the word of Yehovah. If we now go to Genesis 1:3, we read, “And God said, let there be light, and there was light.”

If we read Genesis 1:3 in English, we can easily miss the point, but if we read it in Hebrew, we see that the word for “Let there be” is hayah. If we now go back to Ex 3:14 and we look at what Hebrew word is used when Yehovah says, “This is what you are going to say to the Israelites, I AM sent you,” the Hebrew word for I AM is hayah.

So the first word spoken by Yehovah in creation is hayah, and when He said hayah, light was created.

If John 1:1-3 says Yeshua is the word of Yehovah, who created all things, then Yeshua is the word that was spoken by Yehovah, the Hebrew word hayah, in Gen 1:3. But He is also the word spoken to Moses in Ex 3:14.

When Moses asks Yehovah for His name, we would expect Yehovah to give him His name immediately. Instead, we see Yehovah first giving Moses a description of His character. When He says, I AM WHO I AM, what He says in Hebrew is, I have always been, I am, and I will always be. Here He is also using the Hebrew word Hayah which we know from John 1:1-3 is Yeshua. After giving Moses a presentation of who He (Yehovah) is and how His personality and character is, then He tells Moses His name Yehovah in verse 15.

All of this answers our question, what about Jesus, the Son of God? How can He be the word of God, with God, and be God who created all things but not to be worshiped as Yehovah?

When Yehovah speaks in Gen 1:3, He says hayah in Hebrew. The spoken word hayah creates and is a part of Yehovah. This is why John 1:1-3 says Yeshua is the Word (hayah) of Yehovah, and through Him, all things are made.

When Yehovah introduces Himself to Moses, in Ex 3:14-15, He starts by saying I AM WHO I AM. This is Yehovah’s character description telling Moses I was, I am, and I will always be, and for each time He says I AM He uses the word hayah. This is why John 1:1-3 says Yeshua (who is hayah) is Yehovah and was with Yehovah.

So what John 1:1-3 is telling us is this, Yeshua is Yehovah, so by worshiping Yehovah, we are worshiping Yeshua. Another side to this is His name Yeshua. Yeshua is short for Yehoshua, which means Yehovah saves. So in His name, Yeshua, we see another clue revealing to us Yeshua is Yehovah.

Some of you would say, ok, that is fine, but is still does not explain why it is idolatry to worship Yeshua instead of Yehovah.

This brings us back to Ex 20:2-4, where Yehovah clearly says, we are only to worship Him, and the Gospels where Yeshua teaches us to worship Yehovah. And now we know how Yeshua can be Yehovah, so now we know worship of Yehovah is the same thing as worshiping Yeshua.

If you are still not convinced, we can go to John 14. In John 14, Yeshua Himself says if we worship Yehovah, we worship Him if we worship Yehovah by being obedient sons and daughters of Yehovah (something that requires us to obey Ex 20:2-4) Yehovah and Yeshua will love us and come and make their dwelling within us.

There is, therefore, no doubt that Yeshua is Yehovah, and He is God’s Son because He was obedient to Yehovah in everything. As we learned yesterday, you and I can become sons and daughters of Yehovah by imitating the life of Yeshua by being obedient to Moses. We also learned yesterday how this is the only way for us to get saved by having faith in the cross shown in obedience to Moses.

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