Ever since I placed my trust and faith in Jesus, I have accepted the divinity of Christ as a fact that is beyond question or doubt. I assumed other Christians believed the same. I was wrong.
How are we as Christians meant to evangelise to the world and share the Gospel of Jesus to the unsaved when we can’t even agree on one of the core beliefs of our faith, namely, the divinity of Jesus?
If we in Christendom don’t all accept the divinity of Christ, how are we to refute atheists and those of other faith backgrounds when they deny or reject that Jesus is God?
My prayer is that the LORD will use what I have shared here through His Spirit to help you conclude without a doubt that Jesus is LORD!
In recent times, I have seen a number of teachers assert that what Philippians 2:7 really means is that Jesus set aside some or all His divine attributes to fully be a man when He walked the Earth but remains God. I have listed a few translations of Philippians 2:5-8 to show the reader that there are slight differences in how these verses are rendered in each translation.
This is Philippians 2:5-8 from the Authorised King James Version.
Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: but made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: and being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.
Philippians 2:5-8 (AKJV)
This is Philippians 2:5-8 from the New American Standard Bible.
Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.
Philippians 2:5-8 (NASB)
This is Philippians 2:5-8 from the New International Version.
In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross!
Philippians 2:5-8 (NIV)
Where the AKJV says “made himself of no reputation”, NASB says “emptied Himself” and NIV says “he made himself nothing”.
There are those in the Christian circles who teach that when Jesus “emptied himself” (ekenosen in Greek from the root word kenoo, which can mean “to empty”), He gave up some or all of His divine attributes, that is He emptied Himself of His divinity, so as to be fully human or truly be a human like us.
The problem with this teaching is that if Jesus were to give up some or all of the attributes of His divinity, He would cease to be God! You can’t say that Jesus was missing some core attributes of God and still call Him God. Either He is God or He is not!
Jesus was fully man and fully God but did not rely on His divinity to live an easy life, rather, Hebrews 4:15 has this to say about the Lord:
For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.
Hebrews 4:15 (AKJV)
Jesus faced all sorts of temptation (most of which we don’t know about because it’s not written in the Bible) but He depended on God the Father, rather than exercising His divinity to find the easy way out. This is the emptying Jesus did, choosing not to depend on His divinity but experiencing the full measure of humanity in total dependence on God the Father. This is abundantly clear in John 5:19, John 5:30, John 12:49, John 8:28 to mention a few verses from Scriptures.
Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.
John 5:19 (AKJV)
I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.
John 5:30 (AKJV)
For I have not spoken of myself; but the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak.
John 12:49 (AKJV)
Then said Jesus unto them, When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am he, and that I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things.
John 8:28 (AKJV)
By using Jesus as the example, what Apostle Paul was trying to teach the Philippians then and wanting us Christians to learn today is to humble ourselves and be dependent on God rather than exalt or elevate ourselves.
Do not be taken in by those who teach Kenosis. To deny the divinity of Jesus is not just a small theological error, rather, it is to go against one of the fundamental truths of the Christian faith!
If Jesus is not God, then His sacrifice is not sufficient a payment for the penalty for our sins and we remain sinners deserving of death and eternal separation from God!
If you want to read more about Kenosis, please visit https://bible.org/article/empty-god.
Divinity of Jesus
Jesus is God the Son. You cannot call yourself a Christian and not believe that Jesus is God but don’t just take my word for it.
Let’s look at what we can learn from the Bible about who Jesus really is.
And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: and he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end. Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.
Luke 1:30-35 (AKJV)
So, the angel Gabriel clearly tells Mary (and us) that Jesus is the Son of God!
Apostle John also clearly tells us that Jesus is God.
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. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
John 1:1-3 (AKJV)
And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
John 1:14 (AKJV)
Jesus does not correct Thomas when he meets Him after the resurrection.
And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God.
John 20:28 (AKJV)
While Jesus makes the declaration “I am God!” in those exact words, He makes these profound declarations.
Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am. Then took they up stones to cast at him: but Jesus hid himself, and went out of the temple, going through the midst of them, and so passed by.
John 8:58 (AKJV)
I and my Father are one. Then the Jews took up stones again to stone him. Jesus answered them, Many good works have I shewed you from my Father; for which of those works do ye stone me? The Jews answered him, saying, For a good work we stone thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God.
John 10:30-33 (AKJV)
Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works. Believe me that I am in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works’ sake.
John 14:10-11 (AKJV)
What is significant about John 8:58? Why do the people want to stone Jesus? We go to the Old Testament to find the answer.
And Moses said unto God, Behold, when I come unto the children of Israel, and shall say unto them, The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you; and they shall say to me, What is his name? what shall I say unto them? And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you.
Exodus 3:13-14 (AKJV)
Jesus uses I AM to refer to Himself, just like God did with Moses! This is one of those few places where Jesus claims equality with the God of the Old Testament.
If all of this is not enough, there are multiple instances of people worshipping Jesus and He doesn’t correct them!
And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh.
Matthew 2:11 (AKJV)
Then they that were in the ship came and worshipped him, saying, Of a truth thou art the Son of God.
Matthew 14:33 (AKJV)
And as they went to tell his disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, All hail. And they came and held him by the feet, and worshipped him.
Matthew 28:9 (AKJV)
And when they saw him, they worshipped him: but some doubted.
Matthew 28:17 (AKJV)
And they worshipped him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy:
Luke 24:52 (AKJV)
And he said, Lord, I believe. And he worshipped him.
John 9:38 (AKJV)
If Jesus was merely a sinless man and not God, wouldn’t He have been quick to tell everyone to not worship Him? Jesus cannot be both deceitful and sinless.
When we look at what the Bible has to say, the divinity of Jesus is clear and cannot be contested!
In the end, I believe in Jesus and believe who He says He is, my Saviour and Lord, because of the Holy Spirit teaching this truth to me through the Word (the Bible), not because of human understanding, whether it be my own or that of other Christians.
Don’t believe whatever you hear because it’s being taught by a Christian. Examine everything you see, hear and are taught against the Word of God so that you will not be deceived by damnable heresies that has an appearance of truth but is far from truth! Is it wrong to do this? Again, let’s find out what we can learn from God’s Word!
And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews. These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.
Acts 17:10-11 (AKJV)
When Paul and Silas was teaching the Berean Jews, they didn’t blindly believe what they heard, rather, examined everything against the Scriptures to ensure that Paul and Silas were telling and teaching them the truth! If the Apostle Paul was open to scrutiny and likely welcomed it, anyone who handles God’s Word should have nothing to hide and be open to being cross examined against the Bible.
The divinity of Jesus cannot and should not be denied. Jesus is fully God and fully man, not because I say so, rather it is what God says in the Bible and this truth is vital to our journey as Christians.Thank Sri 🙂