Objections Against Christ's Deity

List of objections & the response

1) Jesus never claimed “I am God”?

It is charged by both Muslims and Jehovah Witness’s alike that Christ never claimed, “I am God”. Jesus was “in [the] beginning …with God” (John 1:1) and Jesus said the scriptures “bear witness about” him (John 5:39). Didn't Jesus claim "I am God" in the scriptures? He did! Let us see Gen 31.

Gen. 31:11-13 Then the angel of the [true] God said to me in the dream, ‘Jacob!’ to which I said, ‘Here I am.’ 12 And he continued, ‘Raise your eyes, please, and see all the he-goats springing upon the flock are striped, speckled and spotty, for I have seen all that La´ban is doing to you. 13 I am the [true] God of Beth´el, where you anointed a pillar and where you vowed a vow to me. Now get up, go out of this land and return to the land of your birth.’”

Note: The Hebrew word for "angel" is mal'ak which means Messenger. Notice in the above verse, it was the “Messenger” of the true God who claims, “I am the [true] God". This Messenger is sent by God in Ex 23:20 - “Here I am sending an angel ahead of you”. Therefore this Messenger is a separate person from God. This Messenger can forgive sins. Forgiving sins is an attribute of God -Mark2:7. And further, God says “my name is within him”(Ex. 23:21). If God's name is Jehovah, this messenger must be Jehovah too.

It was the messenger “of the [true] God who was going ahead of the camp of Israel in a pillar of cloud” (Ex. 14:19, 24). But Ex. 13:21 says it was none other than "Jehovah [who] was going ahead of them in the daytime in a pillar of cloud to lead them". This messenger is also identifed as Jehovah himself. See -An Angel called Jehovah. Who is this messenger? Is He Christ?

1 Corinthians 1-4 Now I do not want YOU to be ignorant, brothers, that our forefathers were all under the cloud and all passed through the sea 2 and all got baptized into Moses by means of the cloud and of the sea; 3 and all ate the same spiritual food 4 and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they used to drink from the spiritual rock-mass that followed them, and that rock-mass meant the Christ. See also: ANGEL of Jehovah not Jehovah?, Jesus is the Almighty God, How bibilical is Godhead?

2) Jesus said that the Father is the “only true God” (John 17:3)?

Jesus is referred to as the “only Lord” in Jude 4. However Jesus is not the “only” Lord, the Father is also “Lord” (See: Matt 11:25;Deut 10:17). Jesus claims, “I am the true God” in Gen 31:13 (See answer to Objection 1). Therefore, the Father is not the only true God, Jesus is also true God.

1 Cor 8:6 says “there is one Lord”.

1 Cor. 8:6 There is actually to us one God the Father, out of whom all things are, and we for him; and there is one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things are, and we through him.

Here again, Jesus is not the one and only Lord, Father is also (see above). The terms "one and only" does not exclude the other members of the Godhead, but rather confirms unity in Godhead. See How bibilical is Godhead?.

3) Why did He say, "Why call me good, only God is good?"

Luke 18:19 Jesus said to him: “Why do you call me good? Nobody is good, except one, God.

A closer look at the text will reveal that Jesus never said he was not good. He challenged the man to think “WHY He called Jesus good”. Jesus was helping the rich ruler recognize that the attribute of “goodness” which the ruler had applied to Him was a quality that only God possesses. Thus, Jesus was forcing the ruler to recognize that either He is “good” and is therefore God, or He is bad and is therefore only a man.

4) Jesus is not the Almighty God in the Old Testament?

Who was it that appeared in Gen. 17:1?

Gen 17:1 When A´bram got to be ninety-nine years old, then Jehovah appeared to A´bram and said to him: “I am God Almighty. Walk before me and prove yourself faultless.

Is it God the Father who appeared in Gen. 17:1? The answer is no!!! It is not God (I John 4:12) the Father (John 6:46)! because "the Father who sent [Jesus]...YOU have neither heard his voice at any time nor seen his figure" John 5:37. Therefore the God who appeared to Abraham as Almighty is none other than God the Son. See No man has seen God the Father.

5) Didn’t Jesus say, “the head of Christ is God” 1 Cor 11:3?

1 Corinthians 11:3 But I want YOU to know that the head of every man is the Christ; in turn the head of a woman is the man; in turn the head of the Christ is God.

If you notice, the text also says, the head of a woman is man. Now does this mean that the husband is a superior being to his wife? No at all! The husband is greater than his wife by way of position but not by nature. The same applies to the Father and the Son.

6) Jesus said, “The Father is greater than I am” John 14:28

John 14:28 YOU heard that I said to YOU, I am going away and I am coming [back] to YOU. If YOU loved me, YOU would rejoice that I am going my way to the Father, because the Father is greater than I am.

Just like in 1 cor 11:3, the term greater refers to position, not nature. The term better refers to nature. If Jesus wanted to say He was inferior to God in nature, He would have said, "The Father is better than I." Speaking of Jesus, it reads in Hebrews 1:4 “So he has become better than the angels”.

At John 14:12, Christians are said to do “greater” works than Jesus. Does this mean that our works are “better” than Jesus’ works? An “elder” is in a “greater” position than a “ministerial servant,” does this mean that the “elder” has a “better” human nature?

We can see how “as touching his Manhood”, Jesus is “inferior to the Father” as the Father was in a “greater” position (being in Heaven) than Jesus was here on earth. But this does not prove that Jesus was an “inferior” God simply because the Father is in a “greater” position of authority while Jesus was here on earth.

Therefore the term greater refers to position, not nature. The term better refers to nature.

7) If Jesus is "subject" to the Father, He can't be God 1 Cor. 15:28?

1 Cor 15: 28 But when all things will have been subjected to him, then the Son himself will also subject himself to the One who subjected all things to him, that God may be all things to everyone.

The same principle of 'headship' between a husband and a wife applies when it says “the son himself will also be subject to” the Father in 1 Cor 15:27,28.

In luke 2:51 Jesus was subject to his parents:

Luke 2: 51 And he went down with them and came to Naz´a·reth, and he continued subject to them. Also, his mother carefully kept all these sayings in her heart.

No one would say that Jesus was inferior BY NATURE to Joseph and Mary. Likewise, Jesus is NOT inferior BY NATURE to the Father.

8) Jesus can't be God, because He said that the Father was His God in Jn. 20:17?

Jesus calls the Father "My God" because He is still a man as well as God. But note that the Father calls the Son, “My Son”.

Matt 3:17 "Look! Also, there was a voice from the heavens that said: “This is my Son, the beloved, whom I have approved.”

The Son claims “I am the true God” in Gen. 31:13 and God claims the Son has his "name" Jehovah Ex. 23:21. Also, why was Jesus always so careful to distinguish His relationship with the Father from the relationship that His followers have with the Father? Why did He say, “I go to My Father and your Father” instead of saying, “I go to our Father”? Jesus is God’s Son by nature, whereas we are God’s sons by adoption (John 1:12).

See An Angel called Jehovah, How bibilical is Godhead?, ANGEL of Jehovah not Jehovah?

9) Jesus said “who will sit in the kingdom” is not mine to give (Matt 20: 23)?

Matt. 20:20-23 Then the mother of the sons of Zeb´e·dee approached him with her sons, doing obeisance and asking for something from him. 21 He said to her: “What do you want?” She said to him: “Give the word that these my two sons may sit down, one at your right hand and one at your left, in your kingdom.” 22 Jesus said in answer: “YOU men do not know what YOU are asking for. Can YOU drink the cup that I am about to drink?” They said to him: “We can.” 23 He said to them: “YOU will indeed drink my cup, but this sitting down at my right hand and at my left is not mine to give, but it belongs to those for whom it has been prepared by my Father.”

Matt. 20:23 is not addressing the issue of who is saved, but rather a position of honor in the heavenly kingdom. That Jesus defers to the will of the Father does not detract from or negate the deity of the Son. Jesus himself grants the thief on the cross, salvation.

Luke 23:42 And he went on to say: “Jesus, remember me when you get into your kingdom.” 43 And he said to him: “Truly I tell you today, You will be with me in Paradise.”

10) If Jesus is God, then why did He not know the time of His return? Mk. 13:32

Mark 13:32 “Concerning that day or the hour nobody knows, neither the angels in heaven nor the Son, but the Father.

This text can be explained by His voluntarily choice to not to know the hour. Does the Watchtower also teach that the Father chooses not to know some things about the future?

The Watchtower says in the Feb. 15, 1995 Watchtower on pages 5 & 6 "...in many cases, he has chosen not to use his foreknowledge. Because God is almighty, he is free to exercise his abilities as he wishes, not according to the wishes of imperfect humans." Watchtower is saying that the Father is God even though they teach that he can choose to not know or use certain things. Yet at the same time they try to prove that Jesus is not God because he chose to limit his knowledge when he was a man.

But was Christ really ignorant of the day or the hour?

The Greek word used in the passage is "eido" which is translated as "know". The main definition of the greek word “eido” was understood to mean “cannot tell”. Lets see the usage of the same word else where in scriptures.

Paul speaking in 1 Corinthians 2:2 says:

1 Corinthians 2:2 For I decided not to know (eido) anything among YOU except Jesus Christ, and him impaled.

In this verse, Paul is saying that his only desire is to make known or tell of, Jesus.

Therefore Mark 13:32 can be appropriately read as:

"Concerning that day or the hour nobody will make known, neither the angels in heaven nor the Son, but the Father.

Jesus is not saying that He’s ignorant of the hour of His second coming, but rather, He simply will not reveal it - neither will the angels.

In the ancient Jewish wedding custom, the groom's father arranges the wedding. During a period of betrothal, the groom prepares a bridal chamber at his father's house while the bride waits at her house. It is only when the groom's father is satisfied with his son's preparations, that he gives his permission to his son to go and get the bride, and bring her to the bridal chamber.

With this understanding, Jesus is not saying He is ignorant of the hour of the second coming, but rather, He cannot reveal it, neither can angels, because according to the wedding protocol, it is reserved for the Father only to announce that the preparations of his son are complete, and the time for the wedding has come. Jesus alludes to these wedding customs in John 14:2.

11) Jesus said, "The Son cannot do a single thing of his own initiative" (John 5:19)

John 5:19 Therefore, in answer, Jesus went on to say to them: “Most truly I say to YOU, The Son cannot do a single thing of his own initiative, but only what he beholds the Father doing. For whatever things that One does, these things the Son also does in like manner.

This is a very interesting text and it actually proves the deity of Christ. The first part of the text says that the Son cannot do a single thing. This is because “as a man he humbled himself” (Philippians 2:9) and depended upon God. The second part of the verse says Christ can do whatever the thing that the Father does. Now who can do the same things that God the Father can do? Could a man or an angel? Not at all!

12) Just before being stoned to death, the martyr Stephen "gazed into heaven and caught sight of God's glory and of Jesus standing at God's right hand." (Acts 7:55) Clearly, he saw two separate individuals—but no holy spirit. Therefore Holy Spirit is not a person and no Godhead?

I am going to Mary, Martha and Lazarus’ home to study the Bible.” That would lead you to think that there were three people who lived there. Later I mention that I went to Lazarus’ home and ate supper with Lazarus and Mary. Does that mean that Martha do not exist? This is just a brief report of what happened. Spirit has been already identified as a person who “pleads with God” just like the person Jesus Christ.

13) The triadic passages mentioned are based upon the assumption that the doctrine of a triune Godhead is true. The mere mention of these would not conclude that they are evidence of the trinity. One would also conclude that Peter, James and John also had some type of trine nature. Peter and James and John are mentioned together in: Mk 13:33 and Lk 9:28.

There are three persons's in the bible and the three are God in nature. They are one in UNITY. With regard to triadic pasages, there are in fact 8 "triadic passages" that establish a clear pattern of meaning for PJJ (Peter, James and John). The PJJ triadic passages, do not prove PJJ are God, they only prove there is a reason behind why they are always grouped in sets of three. Triadic passages are powerful, because they prove, by way of pattern, that the three persons have a special and unique working arrangement. The triadic passages prove that each member is also a person. ( See also Triadic Passages in bible.ca)

14) Christ did not have life in himself based on John 5:26?

(Note: This answer is sourced from remnantofgod.org; click on the link to go to the orginal article)

The following has been placed at the forefront as a passage that can be used to proclaim Christ non-existent at one time in time.

John 5:26, "For just as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted also to the Son to have life in himself"

In STRONG'S Concordance we see the word "HAVE or granted" (#2192) can be translated as, "to hold" "keep" or even "possess." If any of these definitions are used, STRONG'S stresses the point further by stating it is, "used of those joined to any one by the bonds of natural blood or marriage or friendship or duty or law etc, of attendance or companionship " This leads me to ask the question... Are not the Father and Son in agreement and joined as "natural blood" or a as a "friendship, duty, law, or companionship?" In other words, would it not be better understood to say the Father is in agreement that Jesus will use the life already within Himself as a Creator God to bring His children from the grave on that great and dreadful day? If we read just a verse preceding the passage we see this to be the context...

John 5:25-26, "Most truly I say to YOU, The hour is coming, and it is now, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God and those who have given heed will live. For just as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted also to the Son to have life in himself ;"

The Word clearly says the dead in Christ will come to a day where they will actually hear the voice of the Creator, (Jesus) and what happens when they hear this wonderful voice? The Word says they "will live" does it not? And then it goes on to say that they live because the Father is already in agreement with His Son that by the sound of His voice they shall live. What else can they do but respond to such a voice that created them on day one anyway. This is why this wonderful Saviour called Lazarus BY NAME on that day. Had Jesus just said "come forth" ALL the graves would have ripped open because He is the source of all life on earth!

Another way to translate the passage using the Greek would be to say, "For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to be the source of life in himself." This is more plausible to embrace because the context of the preceding and following verses makes better sense when stated in this way.