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Is Jesus God?

Is Jesus God?

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Published by Mark
Is Jesus God? The deity of Christ is being discussed in many forums today. This essay looks at the evidence presented in the New Testament, on this important question. Some additional historic sources are also examined.
Is Jesus God? The deity of Christ is being discussed in many forums today. This essay looks at the evidence presented in the New Testament, on this important question. Some additional historic sources are also examined.

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Categories:Types, Research, History
Published by: Mark on May 25, 2009
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved

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02/02/2013

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Portrait of Christ, by Rembrandt
 
Is Jesus God?
Jesus Christ is often regarded as the most influential person who ever lived.But was he God? And did the early followers of Christ really believe that hewas God, visiting this earth in human form? This question is being freshlydebated today, although the debate goes back for centuries.But before we look at what the early followers of Christ believed, we shouldfirst of all ask the broader question "Could God Almighty become a human being?" In answer to that question, we would have to say, yes. Since God by definition is Almighty and all-powerful, it would be
 possible
for God tovisit this earth in human form. It would be within the realm of possibilityfor him to do that.But what did the early Christians believe, concerning Christ? To consider this we will look at statements of the followers of Christ, found in the NewTestament. We will also look at statements in the Old Testament that provide a backdrop, since most of the early believers in Christ were Jewish believers who accepted the inspiration of the Old Testament. (Referencesare taken from the English Standard Version, unless otherwise noted).Then, some references to Christ from non-Christian sources will be brieflyconsidered as well.To find what early Christians believed, we must look to the New Testamentdocuments. Looking at these New Testament documents, we see that thereare various words and titles that are used to describe Jesus. A selection of several of these statements concerning Jesus Christ is given below, alongwith the estimated date the document was written. The dating of thesedocuments is based on the estimates of reliable scholars in the field of ancient biblical texts.
1
 
Key Statements Regarding Christ, from the New Testament:
Paul's Letter to the Colossians (around 60 a.d.)
Colossians 2:8-10 "See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy andempty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ. 9 For in Him all the fullness of 
 
Deity dwells in bodily form, 10 and in Him you have been made complete, and He is thehead over all rule and authority.
(NASB)
Paul's Letter to the Philippians (around 54 a.d.)
Philippians 3:20 "But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, theLord Jesus Christ, 21 who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, bythe power that enables him even to subject all things to himself."
The Letter to the Hebrews (68-70 a.d.)
Hebrews 1:3 "The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven"
(NIV).
The Gospel of John (70-98 a.d.)
John 1:1 "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word wasGod. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made through him, andwithout him was not any thing made that was made....."John 1:14 "And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory,glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth."
The Gospel of Mark (55-60 a.d.)
Mark 14:60-62 "And the high priest stood up in the midst and asked Jesus, “Have you noanswer to make? What is it that these men testify against you?” But he remained silentand made no answer. Again the high priest asked him, “Are you the Christ, the Son of the Blessed?” And Jesus said, “I am, and you will see the Son of Man seated at the righthand of Power, and coming with the clouds of heaven.”
Paul's Letter to the Philippians (c. 54 a.d.)
Philippians 2:5-8 "Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, 6who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to begrasped, 7 but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the

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