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Featured The Gospel of John Claims that Jesus is God

Discussion in 'Biblical Debates' started by 74x12, Aug 5, 2018.

  1. SugarOcean

    SugarOcean ¡pɹᴉǝM ʎɐʇS

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    Jesus was God. There are denominations that teach falsity in this regard. Jehovah Witness , Anabaptists, are but two.

    Before Jesus came to be in this world, we are told Jesus was God. And you shall name the child Immanuel, which means, God with us.

    Teachings that say Jesus was just a man are unholy. And are blasphemy of the holy spirit. Sad.
     
  2. SugarOcean

    SugarOcean ¡pɹᴉǝM ʎɐʇS

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    True. It is blasphemy. However, it is the blasphemy taught in the New World Translation Jehovah Witness book.
    Sadly, JW is a cult. This then is an abomination in the abstract of that fact.

    They're ignorant of scripture for a very bad reason.
    “Thus the Bible is an organizational book and belongs to the Christian congregation as an organization, not to individuals, regardless of how sincerely they may believe that they can interpret the Bible. For this reason the Bible cannot be properly understood without Jehovah’s visible organization in mind.”—The Watchtower, October 1, 1967, p. 587
     
    #462 SugarOcean, Jul 13, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2019
  3. 74x12

    74x12 Well-Known Member

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    While I do agree that Jesus is God. I don't agree that it's a blasphemy of the holy Spirit to say He was just a man. People really believe that and mean no harm by saying it. If you know He is God though and you say He was just a man then you're denying Him. But it's still not blasphemy of the holy Spirit.
     
  4. SugarOcean

    SugarOcean ¡pɹᴉǝM ʎɐʇS

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    I would disagree because the scriptures those who argue Jesus was just a man don't actually exist to say that. While , to believe Jesus was just a man, having read scripture, means one has ignored the scripture that inform Jesus was God. And that is blasphemy to then insist Jesus was just a man.
     
  5. Clear

    Clear Well-Known Member
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    I do not think that the author of John intended to convey idolatry and blasphemy (though to some of the Jews of that day is may have seemed that way) but instead was trying to convey early Christian theology according to his personal belief. You might have written the phrase differently because of your personal beliefs.

    This is an example of the point I made. YOUR personal belief (personal context) affects your translations and thus it is with creators of the various bibles. They also translate according to their personal context. IF one uses strict rules of grammar as their context (an agnostic or computer or ancient christian, etc.) then the translation will be different.

    This has been part of the difficulty for Christianity in the eyes of non-Christians. It makes a claim that a man (Jesus) is also somehow, a God. Some of the major criticisms of Christianity has been because it makes this claim which seems, to some other religions, as a form of blasphemy. For example, while Islam is perfectly fine with the claim that the man Jesus was a Prophet, they feel that to say a man (Jesus, or any other man...) is a God, then this is, to them, blasphemy.

    If Jesus is divine, then it is not particularly blasphemous to say he was "a God". While I think that the context is that he is the God of the Old Testament, your model might be different. I am O.K. with these sorts of discrepancies.

    Good luck coming up with your own models regarding the nature of Jesus.


    Clear.
    ακτζειδρω
     
    #465 Clear, Jul 14, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2019
  6. Oeste

    Oeste Well-Known Member
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    Correct. For Christians there is one God. For the Watchtower there are quite a few. They are henotheistic in the same manner as the Romans and Greeks, worshiping one deity but believing in many gods.The Watchtower tells their followers that the pagans "worshiped many gods" but that's only true if you view pagans deities as a group. The individual pagan acknowledged or respected other gods but generally worshiped one specific deity.

    I put together a diagram which I believe illustrates the Watchtower pantheon. I'm willing to make corrections if they can source jw.org or one of their publications:

    Watchtower Pantheon.png

    My understanding of the Watchtower is that there are two "major" Gods, Jehovah who is Almighty and Michael the Arch Angel who is a Mighty God. From their perspective this is okay because they only worship one. I'm not sure, but I think they believe Michael "ceases to exist" when Jesus is born, leaving Jehovah as the only major God. It would be interesting to hear what the WT's latest thought is about that.

    In any event, Michael the Mighty God is no more and he becomes Jesus who is now "...a god" like Satan, Ceasar, the Judges of Israel and other "mighty men".

    It's a radical departure from traditional Christianity which considers all gods and Gods bogus but one.
     
  7. Oeste

    Oeste Well-Known Member
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    Well in truth, at least 80% of the WT’s translation committee couldn’t read Greek either, and we’re still debating their “rule”. :)
     
  8. Hockeycowboy

    Hockeycowboy Well-Known Member
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  9. Oeste

    Oeste Well-Known Member
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    Correct, you worship but one God, but how is that different from henotheism or monolatry? As soon as you acknowledge the existence of other gods you are by definition a polytheist.

    Also, I haven't been able to find out from a JW whether Michael ceases to exist at the moment of Jesus' birth.
     
  10. Hockeycowboy

    Hockeycowboy Well-Known Member
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    So the Apostle Paul was, too, then? He said "there are many gods and many lords", did he not? 1 Corinthians 8:5

    What other people make into gods, we can't help but acknowledge that. Paul did, also.
     
  11. Oeste

    Oeste Well-Known Member
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    Yes, e Satan is a god for many people. However please read the next verse:

    yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist.​

    So for the pagans, there are many gods, but for Christians there is but one.

    We can acknowledge others, like the Greeks and Romans had gods. It would be silly not to. But Christians do not acknowledge those gods because for us there is but one God.

    Look, when you read a book about Greek mythology, does anyone claim the gods in the book are "fake news"? Of course not. Everyone acknowledges THE GREEKS had their gods.

    But as Christians we do not acknowledge Greek, Roman, Egyptian, or any other God or gods but one.
     
  12. tigger2

    tigger2 Member

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    ...........
    The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology, Zondervan, 1986, tells us:

    “The reason why judges are called ‘gods’ in Ps. 82 is that they have the office of administering God’s judgment as ‘sons of the Most High.’ In context of the Ps. the men in question have failed to do this.... On the other hand, Jesus fulfilled the role of a true judge as agod’ and ‘son of the Most High’.” - Vol. 3, p. 187.

    Some of these (mostly) trinitarian sources which admit that the Bible actually describes men who represent God (judges, Israelite kings, etc.) and God’s angels as gods include:

    1. Young’s Analytical Concordance of the Bible, “Hints and Helps...,” Eerdmans, 1978 reprint;

    2. Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible, #430, Hebrew and Chaldee Dict., Abingdon, 1974;

    3. New Bible Dictionary, p. 1133 (angels, judges), Tyndale House Publ., 1984;

    4. Today’s Dictionary of the Bible, p. 208 (angels, judges), Bethany House Publ., 1982;

    5. Hastings’ A Dictionary of the Bible, p. 217, Vol. 2;

    6. The New Brown-Driver-Briggs-Gesenius Hebrew-English Lexicon, p. 43, Hendrickson publ.,1979;

    7. Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament, #2316 (4.), Thayer, Baker Book House, 1984 printing;

    8. The International Standard Bible Encyclopaedia, p. 132, Vol. 1; and p. 1265, Vol. 2, Eerdmans, 1984;

    9. The NIV Study Bible, footnotes for Ps. 45:6; Ps. 82:1, 6; and Jn 10:34; Zondervan, 1985;

    10. New American Bible, St. Joseph ed., footnote for Ps. 45:7; 82:1; Jn 10:34; 1970 ed.;

    11. A. T. Robertson, Word Pictures, Vol. 5, pp. 188-189;

    12. William G. T. Shedd, Dogmatic Theology, Vol. 1, pp. 317, 324, Nelson Publ., 1980 printing;

    13. Murray J. Harris, Jesus As God, p. 202, (angels, judges, kings) Baker Book House, 1992;

    14. William Barclay, The Gospel of John, V. 2, Daily Study Bible Series, pp. 77, 78, Westminster Press, 1975;

    15. The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible (John 10:34 and Ps. 82:6);

    16. The Fourfold Gospel (Note for John 10:35);

    17. Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Jamieson, Fausset, Brown (John 10:34-36);

    18. Matthew Henry Complete Commentary on the Whole Bible (Ps. 82:6-8 and John 10:35);

    19. John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible (Ps. 82:1).

    20. Theological Dictionary of the New Testament ('Little Kittel'), - p. 328, Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1985.

    21. The Expositor’s Greek Testament, pp. 794-795, Vol. 1, Eerdmans Publishing Co.

    22. The Amplified Bible, Ps. 82:1, 6 and John 10:34, 35, Zondervan Publ., 1965.

    23. Barnes' Notes on the New Testament, John 10:34, 35.

    24. B. W. Johnson's People's New Testament, John 10:34-36.

    25. The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology, Zondervan, 1986, Vol. 3, p. 187.

    26. Fairbairn’s Imperial Standard Bible Encyclopedia, p. 24, vol. III, Zondervan, 1957 reprint.

    27. Theological Dictionary, Rahner and Vorgrimler, p. 20, Herder and Herder, 1965.

    28. Pastor Jon Courson, The Gospel According to John.

    29. Vincent’s New Testament Word Studies, John 10:36.

    30. C. J. Ellicott, John 10:34, Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers.

    (Also John 10:34, 35 - CEV; TEV; GodsWord; The Message; NLT; NIRV)

    And the earliest Christians like the highly respected scholar Origen and others - - including Tertullian; Justin Martyr; Hippolytus; Clement of Alexandria; Theophilus; the writer of “The Epistle to Diognetus”; and even super-trinitarians St. Athanasius and St. Augustine - - also had this understanding for “a god.”

    St. Augustine, for example, showed this understanding of the meaning of “god.” Writing around 410 A.D. and speaking of godly men, he said:

    “For created gods are gods not by virtue of what is in themselves, but by a participation of the True God.” - The City of God, Book XIV, Chapter 13,

    Also see Book IX, Ch. 23, where Augustine says that godly men and angels are gods!

    If all those trinitarian scholars and all those early Christian writers (including trinitarians) can admit that the Bible says men and angels appointed by God are called 'gods,' I see no big problem for JWs to say the same!!
     
    #472 tigger2, Jul 15, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2019
  13. Hockeycowboy

    Hockeycowboy Well-Known Member
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    Yes. "One God, the Father". And Jesus is not the Father. Rather, he is the "one Lord."
     
  14. Oeste

    Oeste Well-Known Member
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    Of course they failed to do it...that's why they were called gods! The prophets of Baal failed too, after Elijah challenged them. Had the judges succeeded they would have been called rulers, judges, kings. Had the prophets of Baal succeeded, we would call Baal rather than Yahweh "God".

    It's not a good thing when scripture refers to someone or something as "a god". Even Moses became "as god" and not "a god" to Pharaoh.

    Lol, that was too funny tigger2! Here's the actual quote:

    “...The Devil would not have begun by an open and obvious sin to tempt man into doing something which God had forbidden, had not man already begun to seek satisfaction in himself and, consequently, to take pleasure in the words: 'You shall be as Gods.' The promise of these words, however, would much more truly have come to pass if, by obedience, Adam and Eve had kept close to the ultimate and true Source of their being and had not, by pride imagined that they were themselves the source of their being. For, created gods are gods not in virtue of their own being but by a participation in the being of the true God. For, whoever seeks to be more than he is becomes less, and while he aspires to be self-sufficing he retires from Him who is truly sufficient for him.”
    The quote was deceptive as it leaves out a few key words.
     
  15. Oeste

    Oeste Well-Known Member
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    We call God Lord, and we call the Lord our God.

    Now one of the scribes had come up and heard their debate. Noticing how well Jesus had answered them, he asked Him, “Which commandment is the most important of all?” Jesus replied "This is the most important: 'Hear O Israel, the Lord our God is One Lord," (Mark 12:29)
    Notice, it's One Lord, not two Lords.
     
  16. tigger2

    tigger2 Member

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    Thanks for ignoring 95% of the sources gave you.

    "The devil, then, would not have ensnared man in the open and manifest sin of doing what God had forbidden, had man not already begun to live for himself. It was this that made him listen with pleasure to the words, You shall be as gods, Genesis 3:5 which they would much more readily have accomplished by obediently adhering to their supreme and true end than by proudly living to themselves. For created gods are gods not by virtue of what is in themselves, but by a participation of the true God. By craving to be more, man becomes less; and by aspiring to be self-sufficing, he fell away from Him who truly suffices him." - Church Fathers: City of God, Book XIV, Ch. 13. http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/120114.htm

    I don't appreciate being called one who is deceptive in his quoting! Nothing changes with the full quote (which differs from yours). The meaning is still the same. Created gods (faithful men) are not so because of themselves, but by the will of the true God. If Adam and Eve had remained faithful they would have received this from God.

    Where did you get your translation from?
     
    #476 tigger2, Jul 16, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2019
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  17. Hockeycowboy

    Hockeycowboy Well-Known Member
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    Then explain Psalms 110:1.

    Who 'gave' Jesus all authority in Matthew 18:18, which made him Lord?
     
  18. Oeste

    Oeste Well-Known Member
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    That sounds like a good question @Hockeycowboy!

    Sorry I’ve been very busy. I have a LOT of catch up to do on this thread. Besides, look at what @tigger2 posted:

    I'm afraid if I devote much time to answering your question now @tigger2 will feel ignored and its unfair to leave him feeling neglected.

    However, I’m sure @74x12, @Muffled, or @SugarOcean would be able to answer this question for you, and while it may not be exactly how I would have answered at least you’ll have a response until I’m able to get up to speed.
     
  19. Oeste

    Oeste Well-Known Member
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    This was directed @74x12 but I think you're making a supposition about the posters here.

    Can you show us where he or any one else on this thread claimed "ho theos" meant otherwise?

    What exactly were you trying to show or prove? Admittedly I've perused the last few pages of posts rather quickly, but It sounds like you're preaching to the choir.
     
  20. Oeste

    Oeste Well-Known Member
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    THEON study…DEF study??? Given the high aspirations listed in its initial Forward, I agree with Countess and (later) Bowman that the NWT must stand on its own. Nowhere in the appendix or footnotes does it tell us to look to THEON, DEF studies, or Tigger2 for additional clarification, updates or exceptions. Countess correctly addresses what he found in the NWT and the WT specifically discourages anyone from referencing anything or anyone outside their official publications.

    In other words, communication flows from God to the uninspired (except when they are inspired) “discreet slave”, who in turn distributes food at the “proper time”, all of which can be found on JW.org and their publications. No other source is welcomed or necessary unless such exception is noted by the WT.

    Let’s look at what the Watchtower says on the subject:

    Noticeably, there have been a number of individuals who have created Web sites ostensibly to preach the good news. Many of these sites are sponsored by indiscreet brothers. Other sites may be sponsored by apostates who wish to lure unsuspecting ones. (2 John 9-11) Commenting on whether there is a need for our brothers to create such Web sites, Our Kingdom Ministry, November 1997, page 3, stated: “There is no need for any individual to prepare Internet pages about Jehovah’s Witnesses, our activities, or our beliefs. Our official site [www.watchtower.org*] presents accurate information for any who want it.”

    *now JW.ORG​

    Obviously the WT would never have written or even suggested such a thing if the spiritual food being provided was somehow insufficient:

    Jesus said to her, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again. But whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a fount of water springing up to eternal life.” (John 4:13-14)​

    As such we must rely on what the WT actually wrote and/or what the NWT actually states for the official position of the WT, so there’s no need to review Theon, DEF or any other study not posted at JW.Org because the WT counsels against it and could lead to a stumbling of those who read it.

    If the WT believed there were important exceptions to their newly stated rule then it was simply (a) sloppy scholarship to leave any such exception out or (b) something they specifically did not want to include or (c) something they did not support or believe.

    Of course he’s going to list all uses of theos. I find strange any charge that Countess was simply too thorough or exhaustive with his documentation.

    You're asking us to share an extremely myopic view of John 1:1. You're looking only at the phrase and ignoring the context. John 1:1 is not without preposition and John 1:1c is not translated alone, by itself, enclosed in a vacuum.

    Agreed. Only from context. We can't forget the first two clauses.

    But that's boring and we'll probably put anyone reading this to sleep (perhaps with the exception of @Clear). We'll look at a much more broader context tomorrow (again it's nearly 2 am!).
     
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