The Deity of Christ

An Examination of the Verses the Cults Use to
Deny that Jesus is Almighty God

Lecture notes by Charlie Campbell
Director of The Always Be Ready Apologetics Ministry
Twitter: @CharlieABRready

 

Open with me to Matthew 16. I’d like to draw your attention to v. 13 and following…

Matthew 16:13-17
13 When Jesus came into the region of Caesarea Philippi, He asked His disciples, saying, “Who do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?” 14 So they said, “Some say John the Baptist, some Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” 15  He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” 16  Simon Peter answered and said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” 17 Jesus answered and said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven.”

As you can see, there were a wide variety of opinions in Jesus’ day as to who He really was. Some thought that He was John the Baptist, Elijah or some other prophet.

Two thousand years later, not much has changed. Today there are still a variety of views regarding who Jesus was and is.

A VARIETY OF VIEWS AS TO WHO JESUS IS

Muslims believe that Jesus was one of Islam’s many prophets, a good and holy man, but certainly not the Son of God.

Mormons believe that God created Jesus through a relationship with one of His celestial wives. In fact, according to the Mormon publication, Pearl of Great Price, even Satan himself was a son of God, and a brother of Jesus, equal with Jesus in nature. [Book of Moses, Chapter 4, Verses 1-4]

Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that Jesus was, and is, merely an angel who is just one of many “gods” that they say exist. To underscore their belief that Jesus is not Almighty God, they give Jesus the title “god” but with a small “g” in their self-published New World Translation of the Bible (see John 1:1).

Most adherents to the New Age Movement believe that Jesus was a great enlightened teacher who realized that He was God, just like we all can realize we are God.

Hindus believe that Jesus was one of many great and holy men. Many Hindus believe that Jesus was a good teacher and perhaps one of their 330 million avatars. An avatar is an incarnation of the impersonal, supreme being that Hindus believe fills the universe.

Buddhists believe that Jesus was an enlightened man. God? No.

So, there exists today a wide variety of opinions as to who Jesus was and is. Some say He was a great man, others a prophet, an angel, or one of many gods.

WHO DO YOU SAY JESUS IS?

If you believe what Christians down through the centuries have believed, you hold to a much higher view of Jesus. Christians believe that Jesus was and is God Almighty, absolutely equal in nature with the Father and the Holy Spirit (the other two persons in the Trinity).

Why do we believe that? Plain and simple, that’s what the Bible teaches and we believe there are good reasons to trust the Bible.

WHAT THE BIBLE SAYS ABOUT JESUS

Where does the Bible teach that Jesus is God? Lots of places. Here are a few examples:

Paul called Jesus “our great God and Savior” (Titus 2:13)

John called Jesus “God” in the very first verse of his Gospel when he said that “the Word was God” (John 1:1).

Jesus took the name of God revealed to Moses in the burning bush at Exodus 3:14 (“I AM”) and applied it to Himself in John 8:58. In John 5:18, Jesus claimed to be “equal with God.” In John 10:33, He made Himself “out to be God.”

Thomas, one of the twelve disciples, called Jesus: “My Lord and my God!” (John 20:28)

Isaiah, the Old Testament prophet, said that the coming Messiah would be God. Isaiah 9:6 says, “For unto us a Child [a reference to His humanity] is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God [a reference to His deity], Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”

God the Father called Jesus “God.” Hebrews 1:8 says, “But to the Son He [God the Father] says: ‘Your throne, O God, is forever and ever; a scepter of righteousness is the scepter of Your Kingdom.’” [Quoting Psalm 45:6-7]

So this is what the Bible teaches. And as I mentioned a moment ago, we believe there are very good reasons to trust the Bible.

WHY WE BELIEVE THE BIBLE

The Bible not only claims to be God-inspired revelation, it alone proves itself to be trustworthy with hundreds of fulfilled prophecies, its amazing unity, its scientific accuracy and foresight, thousands of archaeological discoveries, etc. (Click here for lots more on evidence for the Bible)

In addition to a wealth of Scripture references that affirm the deity of Christ, the early church fathers––Ignatius, Justin Martyr, Irenaeus and other Christian leaders in the second century––referred to Jesus as God. Click here for more on this.

So a strong case can be made for the deity of Christ. But, rather than continue to build a case for Jesus’ deity by looking at the verses that I think make this clear, I’d like to do something different this evening. I want to examine the verses that the cults use––the Jehovah’s Witnesses in particular––to try and support their erroneous views of Christ. Because not only do Jehovah’s Witnesses deny the Biblical teaching regarding the deity of Christ, they seek to prove from the Bible that Jesus is an inferior, created being, not worthy of our worship. And they can be very persuasive!

Those are the verses I want to look at tonight. My hope is that you will leave here when we are done with…

1. A better grasp on what the Bible teaches

2. Inoculated against the cults’ mishandling of God’s Word

3. Better prepared to share the truth with people who have been confused about this issue

THE VERSES THE CULTS USE TO DISPROVE JESUS' DEITY

The first verse I want us to look at is found in…

COLOSSIANS 1:15 ~ FIRSTBORN


Why don’t you turn over there with me. I’ll purposely be reading out of the New King James Version, rather than the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ New World translation. I’ll do this because I want you to see that they can actually use a standard Bible translation to build their case.

Colossians 1:15
“He [Jesus] is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.”

The firstborn! Ahh, so the Jehovah’s Witness on your porch will typically say something like:

Jehovah Witness: “Look at that. Paul says that Jesus is the “first-born” of all “creation.” The Bible is saying that Jesus was the very first of all of God’s creations. He was created. He was brought into being. So because that is the case, obviously Jesus can’t be the eternal, Almighty God.”

That could sound pretty confusing for people who haven’t studied this. So, how do we respond to that? Is that what this verse is teaching? (That Jesus was the first created being that God made?) No.

That word “firstborn,” there in Colossians 1:15, is the Greek word “prototokos.” It does NOT mean first created as Jehovah’s Witnesses have been taught by the Watchtower Society. There’s another Greek word for ‘first created’ (protoktistos) and Paul did not use that word.

Greek scholars agree that the word Paul uses here in Colossians 1:15 (prototokos) means:

     1. Superior
     2. Preeminent in rank
     3. Above

That’s what Paul, who wrote this epistle, was saying about Jesus (that He is preeminent in rank, superior to, and above all creation).

Why
is Jesus superior over all creation? Well, the very next verse explains. Notice the flow. Paul says:

 Colossians 1:16-17
16 “For by Him [Jesus] all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. 17 And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist.”

That’s why Jesus is superior to everything. He is the One who made everything!

To deal with the implications of these two verses (Col. 1:16–17) the Watchtower Society added four words into their translation that are not in the original Greek to give people the impression that Jesus only made some things, not ALL things.

Well, this is an appalling way to treat God’s Word. We don’t tamper with it to conform it to our liking. We’re to bend to what IT says!

And this passage (Col. 1:16-17) clearly portrays Jesus as the Creator of all things. It even tells us in v. 17 that He existed before all things came into existence.

Brothers and sisters, He is the eternal God!

So, when a Jehovah’s Witness tries to tell you that the term “firstborn,” means that Jesus was the “first created being that God made,” lovingly tell them that they are mistaken, and that the passage is actually teaching that Jesus is superior or above creation.

That
is who Jesus is.

All right, moving along, let’s look next at a verse most of us are familiar with:

JOHN 3:16 ~ BEGOTTEN

Jesus, speaking to a Pharisee by the name of Nicodemus, says:

“For God [speaking of the Father] so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).


Jehovah Witness:
“Ahh! Look at that! Jesus says he was begotten! So even if the word “firstborn” doesn’t mean first created, this verse surely indicates that he was created and therefore not the eternal God.”

Sadly, the Watchtower Society has taught its members that this phrase “only begotten” (monogenes in the Greek) means “created.” Well, they’re wrong again. The word does not mean that. And a wealth of Greek scholars and lexicons back me up on this.

The Greek word monogenes comes from two Greek terms: monos meaning “one” and the noun genes which means “kind” or “type.” So you put these two words together and you have monogenes which means: “unique,” “only” or “one of its kind.”

That’s what Jesus is talking about in John 3:16. He is not saying that God the Father created Him. He’s saying that God so loved the world He sent His only, unique, one of a kind Savior!

All right, let’s consider another verse Jehovah’s Witnesses like to cite:

REVELATION 3:14 ~ BEGINNING OF CREATION


Why don’t you turn over there. Here in v. 14, Jesus refers to Himself with a few different titles, but there’s one in particular that the Jehovah’s Witnesses focus on. Let’s read it:

Revelation 3:14
“And to the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write, “These things says the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God…”

Jehovah Witness:
“Well, here we have another reference to the fact that Jesus had a beginning. Jesus calls himself the “Beginning of the creation of God.” Notice that! He says very plainly here that he is part of the creation of God. If Jesus had a beginning or if he is part of the creation of God, he surely cannot be Almighty God.”

Jehovah’s Witnesses love to point this verse out to people. How can we respond to their interpretation of this verse? Was Jesus saying that He had a beginning, confirming that He was a created creature? No.

The Greek word here for “Beginning” (Rev. 3:14) is the word “arche.” It’s the word from which we get our English word architect. It doesn’t imply in the slightest that Jesus had a beginning (as the Watchtower Society teaches).

Greek scholars say that this word (“arche”) can be properly interpreted as: Origin, Source, Designer, Supervisor, First Cause, Ruler. This is why God the Father can also refer to Himself with the very same word in Revelation 21:6! In fact, Revelation 21:6 is a great cross-reference to write in the margin of your Bible at Revelation 3:14. Notice what Revelation 21:6 says. I’ll start in v. 5 for context:

Revelation 21:5-6
5 “Then He who sat on the throne said, “Behold, I make all things new.” And He said to me, “Write, for these words are true and faithful.” 6 And He said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning [arche] and the End. I will give of the fountain of the water of life freely to him who thirsts.”

So notice that, God the Father refers to Himself with the very same title, the arche, the Beginning.

So back to our verse in question (Rev. 3:14); Jesus is not saying that He had a beginning or that He is the first thing that God made. He is saying that He is the One who began all of creation, that He is the designer, origin, the first cause or ruler of all creation!

And this is exactly what other passages in the Bible teach about Jesus. For example, in the Gospel of John, John says in chapter one, verse 2: “All things came into being [How?] through Him.” Through Jesus. He’s the designer. He’s the architect.

Speaking of all things coming into being through Jesus, a good question to ask Jehovah’s Witnesses is this: Is Jesus the creator?

Jehovah Witness: “Well, we believe that Jesus is a creator in a sense. After God created Jesus, Jesus helped God create the other things.”

When a Jehovah’s Witness tells you this, you might them to Isaiah 44:24. Notice what it says:

Isaiah 44:24
“Thus says the LORD, your Redeemer, and the one who formed you from the womb, “I, the LORD [YHWH], am the maker of all things, stretching out the heavens [How? With someone else’s help? No.] by Myself, and spreading out the earth [with help? No.] all alone."

This verse can have a powerful impact on a Jehovah’s Witness. I have seen Jehovah’s Witnesses completely baffled, utterly stunned, after reading this verse. If Jesus created “all things” as the Bible clearly teaches (Jn. 1:3, Col.1:16-17) and yet God in the Old Testament says that He created everything “all alone” (Isa. 44:24) you have to conclude that Jesus must be that God.

JOHN 5:25 ~ THE SON OF GOD


Jehovah Witness:
“All right Charlie, but what about all the verses in the Bible, where Jesus is called the “Son” of God? If you’re the Son of God, surely you can’t be the eternal Almighty God.”

This is a common objection to the deity of Christ that the Jehovah’s Witnesses and others bring up. They believe the title “Son of God” somehow means that Jesus is inferior to the Father. Well, they’re mistaken. Let’s turn over to John 5:25. Jesus is speaking here to some of His critics. He says:

John 5:25
“Most assuredly, I say to you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God; and those who hear will live.” NKJV

Here in this verse, as you can see, Jesus referred to Himself as the Son of God. This is one of many places in the Gospels where Jesus is referred to with this title.

What did Jesus mean when He said that He was “the Son of God”?

Was this a way of saying that He was less than God, as Jehovah’s Witnesses contend? Not at all. In fact it was actually a claim to deity (equality with God).

Let’s examine the context by backing up a few verses and looking at verse 18. We’ll see that Jesus’ original listeners knew exactly what Jesus was saying. In John 5:18, John writes:

John 5:18
“Therefore the Jews sought all the more to kill Him, [Why?] because He not only broke the Sabbath, but also said that God was His Father [implying that He was the Son of God], making Himself [What?] equal with God.” NKJV

Referring to God as His Father, referring to Himself as the Son of God, was the equivalent of making Himself “equal with God.”

Those listening to Him understood that a son is of the same nature, the same species, the same essence, as his father. And so they immediately understood what Jesus was saying by referring to Himself as the Son of God. And they sought to kill Jesus for making Himself equal with God. So, this title “Son of God” actually helps to verify Jesus’ deity rather than overthrow it.

JOHN 14:28 ~ THE FATHER GREATER


Why don’t you turn over there. Jesus here is speaking to His disciples on the eve of His crucifixion…

John 14:28
“You have heard Me say to you, ‘I am going away and coming back to you.’ If you loved Me, you would rejoice because I said, ‘I am going to the Father,’ for My Father is greater than I.”

Jehovah Witness: “Look at that Charlie! Jesus says right here that his Father is “greater” than him (Jn. 14:28). You keep saying that Jesus is equal in nature with the Father; but that contradicts what Jesus himself said!”

Ahh yes…This is a verse the cults are fond of quoting. Well, once again we need to look a bit more closely at the word in question in the original Greek (there in v. 28). The Greek word for “greater” in John 14:28 is the word meizon. This word is a quantitative term, not a qualitative term. Let me explain. A quantitative term describes quantities, levels, positions, etc. A qualitative term describes qualities, character, nature.

When I say, “The amount of water in this glass is greater than the water in that glass,” I’m speaking quantitatively. I’m not saying that the water in this glass is better than the water in that glass.

When Jesus spoke of His Father being “greater” than Him, He was speaking quantitatively (as the word meizon implies). Jesus was referring to His Father’s position, not His nature. He was not saying His Father was better than Him or more worthy of worship. That would contradict what the Bible says elsewhere.

For instance, notice what Hebrews 1:3 says. Speaking of Jesus, it says:

Hebrews 1:3
“He [Jesus] is the radiance of His glory [God the Father’s] and the exact representation of His nature."

Jesus is absolutely equal in nature to God the Father. But in John 14:28, while Jesus was here on the Earth having “emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant” (Phil. 2:7), having been made for “a little while lower than the angels” (Heb. 2:9), it was completely appropriate to speak of His Father being greater than Him.

He was not saying that the Father was better than Him in character or in nature. Here’s an analogy that might help. The President of the United States is greater than us in position of authority. But in nature he is absolutely equal with us, isn’t he? We are all 100% homosapien. When it comes to Jesus and the Father’s nature, Jesus said: “I and the Father are one” (John 10:30)

Here’s another analogy. Children are absolutely equal in nature with their parents (we’re all homosapiens). But children can rightly speak of their parents, holding a higher office. The fact that the parents are greater in their position of authority does nothing to negate the fact that their children are perfectly equal to them in nature.

And the same is true with Jesus’ statement there in John 14:28.

All right, moving along. Another verse Jehovah’s Witness and other cults like to point out is:

MATTHEW 19:16-17 ~ JESUS NOT GOOD?

Let’s look at it:

Matthew 19:16–17
16 Now behold, one came and said to Him, “Good Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may have eternal life?” 17   So He said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. But if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments.” NKJV

Jehovah Witness: “So look at that Charlie. Jesus says, no one is good but God! Jesus was saying, in effect, ‘Whoa, watch who you are calling good. Don’t call me good!’ This a clear denial that Jesus is equal with Almighty God.’”

Well, hold on a second here. Was that what Jesus was saying to this man? Not at all.

I like to ask Jehovah’s Witnesses two questions when they bring up this verse to help them see that the Watchtower Society, their religious authority, has erred in their interpretation.

Two Key Questions:

1. Is it true, according to the Scriptures, that God alone truly is good?

Now, brothers and sisters, what do you think the answer is to that question? Is it true, according to the Scriptures, that God alone truly is good? The answer is Yes.

The Bible makes it clear that the hearts of men are desperately wicked (Jeremiah 17:9), all of mankind like sheep have gone astray (Isaiah 53:6), there is “none righteous; no not one” (Romans 3:10) and Jesus even called His own disciples evil: “If you then, being evil…” (Luke 11:13).

And Jesus Himself just said, “No one is good but One, that is, God,” here in the verse that the Jehovah’s Witnesses bring up (Matt. 19:17).

So, ask the JW this question. Help them to think through this. They should have no qualms about answering Yes. It is true that God alone is good. Then ask the second question:

2. Was Jesus good?

What’s the answer to this one? YES. Uh oh. The Jehovah’s Witness is trapped! Why?
If God alone is good, as Jesus Himself said (here in Matthew 19:17) and Jesus is good, that means: Jesus is God.

Now, rather than concede that their beliefs about Jesus don’t correspond with the Bible, Jehovah’s Witnesses will often resort to saying something like:

Jehovah Witness: “Well then, maybe Jesus wasn’t good!!”

If they say something like this, you’ll want to have two verse references handy. I encourage you to write these down in the margin of your Bible right there at Matthew 19:16-17:

Hebrews 7:26
John 10:11

Notice Hebrews 7:26, speaking of Jesus, it says:

Hebrews 7:26
“For it was fitting that we should have such a high priest, holy, innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens.”

Holy? Innocent? Undefiled? That’s pretty good! That’s better than good. That’s perfect! And next, notice this, in John 10:11, Jesus even calls Himself good:

John 10:11
“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep.”

So again, if God alone is good and Jesus is good, that means: Jesus is God. See how that works? So then why would Jesus challenge this man (Matt. 19:17) with the question: “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God.”

I, along with numerous Bible commentators, believe it was because Jesus wanted the man to examine the implications of what he was saying when he called Jesus “good.”

Jesus was, in effect, asking him, “Do you realize who you are saying I am when you call Me good? Are you saying that I am God?”

So Matthew 19:17 in no way diminishes the goodness or the deity of Christ. In fact, it actually helps to affirm those qualities.

Moving along. The next verse Jehovah’s Witnesses are fond of quoting is found in…


JOHN 17 ~ JESUS PRAYING TO HIMSELF?


Here in this passage Jesus prays to the Father. Let’s read the first couple of verses to get a sense of what happens here…

John 17:1–2
1 Jesus spoke these words, lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said: “Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son, that Your Son also may glorify You, 2 as You have given Him authority over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as you have given Him."

…and of course Jesus continues. I think most of you are familiar with this passage. Jehovah’s Witnesses point to this passage (this prayer) and say…


Jehovah Witness: “How can you say that Jesus is Almighty God? Why would He pray if He was God? What? Is he talking to himself?”

No. He’s not talking to Himself. Once again, Jehovah’s Witnesses fail to understand the traditional orthodox Christian doctrine relating to the nature of God. We believe there is one God (Deut. 6:4, 1 Cor. 8:4), who coexists in three eternal, coequal persons, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.


And so there’s no dilemma here for us in John 17. He wasn’t talking to Himself. He was talking to God the Father in Heaven.

Jehovah Witness: “But if Jesus was God the Son (as you’re saying) he wouldn’t have had to pray! God doesn’t need to pray.”

You’re right. God doesn’t have to pray. But apparently Jesus wanted to pray. True Christianity is not about “having to pray.” It’s a joy to pray. I’m not sure how it is with Jehovah’s Witnesses, but we love God want to talk to Him. Amen?

So Jesus talked to the Father. They had fellowship. We have no problem with that. All right, another verse JW’s like to quote is found in Mark 13…

MARK 13:31-32 ~ JESUS DOESN'T KNOW THE DAY OR HOUR


Mark 13:31-32
“Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away. But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.” NKJV

Jehovah Witness: “Well, look at that Charlie! Do you believe Almighty God knows all things? [Yes.] Well, then Jesus certainly cannot be that God, for he plainly states here that there are certain things he doesn’t know!”

This is a common verse cited by Jehovah’s Witnesses. Well, what’s the solution to this? It’s not complicated.

Although Jesus was God and is God, at the incarnation Jesus took on a human nature. He had two natures. He was both God and man.

As a man, Jesus cooperated with the limitations of being a man; He often chose to experience the normal limitations of human knowledge (Mark 13:32), He experienced hunger (Luke 4:2), weariness (John 4:6), and the need for sleep (Luke 8:23). We read in Luke’s Gospel that He grew in wisdom (2:40, 52) and that He “learned obedience” through His sufferings in Hebrews 5:8.

So we have no problem here in Mark 13 with Jesus, speaking from the vantage point of His humanity, saying He knew not of a certain day or hour.

His statement in Mark 13:32 is not a denial of His being God, but a confirmation of Him being man.

Jehovah Witness: “All right Charlie, I have one more question about Proverbs 8. We’ve been told by the Watchtower that this is about Jesus, and it clearly seems to indicate that He was created.”

All right. Let’s look at it.

PROVERBS 8:22-30 ~ JESUS BROUGHT FORTH?


Proverbs 8:22-30

22 “The LORD possessed me [Jehovah Witness: Jesus] at the beginning of His way, before His works of old.
23 I have been established from everlasting, from the beginning, before there was ever an Earth. 24 When there were no depths I was brought forth [JW: Created!], when there were no fountains abounding with water.

[Skip down to v.29]

29 “When He assigned to the sea its limit, so that the waters would not transgress His command, when He marked out the foundations of the earth,
30   then I was beside Him as a master craftsman; and I was daily His delight, rejoicing always before Him.” NKJV


Jehovah Witness:
“So Charlie, here in Proverbs 8 we have an Old Testament text wherein the Messiah who was to come (Jesus) tells us that He was brought forth (v. 24) or created by God.”

Sadly, the Watchtower Society has taught its members that Jesus is the one speaking here in Proverbs 8.

Well, there’s a huge problem with that. Let’s back up and look at verse 12. (It’s always good to examine the context!) Solomon, the author of this Proverb, tells us here who’s speaking:

Proverbs 8:12
“I, [Jesus? No. Messiah? No.] wisdom, dwell with prudence, and find out knowledge and discretion.” NKJV

Solomon was using a common literary device called personification. To personify means to give human-like characteristics to an inanimate object.In this passage (Prov. 8), Solomon was not personifying Jesus; he was personifying the inanimate virtue of “wisdom” (v. 1).

Solomon was making wisdom to come alive, as if it were a person, and address the reader about how wise God is.

To further verify that Solomon was not talking about Jesus (the Messiah who would come), notice with me in verses 1-3 that the word “wisdom” is personified as being a female! This is hardly applicable to a male Messiah!

Proverbs 8:1-3
1 “Does not wisdom cry out, and understanding lift up her voice? 2 She takes her stand on the top of the high hill, beside the way, where the paths meet. 3 She cries out by the gates, at the entry of the city, at the entrance of the doors:” NKJV

So, you can be absolutely confident that this is not about Jesus as the Watchtower Society would like us to believe.

CONCLUSION

So, as we’ve seen, all of the verses that the Jehovah’s Witnesses use to deny the deity of Christ fall by the way side with some careful thought and investigation. And not only do they fall by the way side, but the more we look into them the more clearly we see why Christians for 2,000 years have held the views that they have!


Brothers and sisters….Jesus was, and is, Almighty God.

This means that what He said about life and death, sin and salvation, Heaven and Hell, how to live an abundant joyful life, everything must be true. His words were not merely the speculation of some philosopher, good teacher or self-proclaimed prophet but the very words of our Creator.

How important then to read them!

If Jesus was God then this also means that God did not send one of the angels to die there on the cross for your sins, but that He HIMSELF came.

Think of that!

God Himself left the comforts and glory of Heaven so that YOU could be saved and enjoy eternal life with Him. This means that it was God who endured the scourgings, the mocking, the spitting, the punches, the lies, the trials, and the agonies of the crucifixion. He came Himself to save you.

Acts 20:28 says, “God…purchased [the church] with His own blood.”

Romans 5:8 says, “God [not an angel, or some man] demonstrated His own love towards us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”

He absorbed the holy wrath of God towards your sin, so that you could be forgiven. He rose from the grave three days later and today He’s offering all of humanity the free gift of everlasting life and the forgiveness of sins to all who will place their faith in Him.

What awesome love God has shown you and me!

• How could you possibly not want to love Him back?

• How could you not want to know Him better?

• How could you not want to serve Him?

Oh my friends, I exhort you to live for the Lord, serve Him, know Him, worship Him. He is worthy! Amen?

LIMITED BIBLIOGRAPHY & RECOMMENDED READING:

Putting Jesus in His Place: The Case for the Deity of Christ
by Robert Bowman Jr. and J. Ed Komoszewski


The Kingdom of the Cults: Updated Edition
by Walter Martin, edited by Ravi Zacharias

Reasoning from the Scriptures with the Jehovah's Witnesses
by Ron Rhodes

Answering Jehovah's Witnesses Verse by Verse

by David Reed

Answering Jehovah's Witnesses Subject by Subject
by David Reed


charlie_campbell
       


About Charlie Campbell:

Charlie Campbell is the Director of the Always Be Ready Apologetics Ministry and a popular guest speaker at churches and conferences. He is the author of three books:

•  One Minute Answers to Skeptics
•  Archaeological Evidence for the Bible 
•  Teaching and Preaching God's Word

His DVDs and books have been endorsed by:

•  Norman Geisler
•  Charles Colson
•  Chuck Smith
•  Ed Hindson
•  Nancy Leigh DeMoss
•  Jeremy Camp

He resides in southern California with his wife and five children.

Scheduling Charlie to Teach:

Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or click here for further details.

Additional Resources by Charlie Campbell

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Quick Responses to Skeptics:
by Charlie Campbell (Director of ABR Apologetics Ministry)

Q. What evidence do you have that God exists?"

CHRISTIAN: I think the cosmos itself is evidence that God exists. Think of all the billions of galaxies, stars, planets, and moons. How did they come to exist? Philosophers and thinkers down through the ages have narrowed the explanations into three broad options:

1. The cosmos is eternal—and if that's the case, there's no need for a creator because the universe has just always been.
2. The cosmos created itself—again, no need for God. It brought itself into existence.
3. The cosmos was created by someone or something outside of itself—God.

So, let's consider which is the most reasonable explanation. The first option, that the universe is eternal, has been utterly rejected by the scientific community. Why? Astronomers are pointing to things like the background radiation echo, the motion of the galaxies, the second law of thermodynamics, and other evidences all of which have led them to conclude that the universe had a beginning. Well, that eliminates option one. Option two, that the universe created itself, is philosophically impossible—even logically absurd. Of course, before the universe existed it would not have been around to do the creating. Obviously, a non-existent universe could not have done anything! It did not exist. So, option one and two can be thrown out purely on scientific and philosophical grounds. Option three, that something or someone outside of the universe created the universe, is the option that both reason and the evidence point to.


SKEPTIC:  But if the universe demands a creator, then God requires a maker. So, who made God?

CHRISTIAN: Nobody made God. Unlike the finite universe (a universe that began to exist) that demands a creator, God does not need a creator.

SKEPTIC:
Why?

CHRISTIAN:
Because He is eternal. Someone who has always existed does not need a creator or someone to have brought Him into existence. But the universe falls into an entirely different category. As the scientific discoveries
have shown, it has not always existed. And anything that begins to exist requires a cause or maker. Things don’t just pop into existence all on their own. Nothing does not produce something.

SKEPTCI: You really believe that God has just always existed?

CHRISTIAN:
Yes.

SKEPTIC:
Impossible!

CHRISTIAN:
Well, before you scoff at the notion of God having always existed, keep this in mind: something must have always existed. Do you realize that?

SKEPTIC:
Why do you think that?

CHRISTIAN:
Well, think through this with me: if nothing cannot produce something, and yet something exists, then it follows necessarily that something has always existed (in order to bring the something into existence). Think of it this way:

1. If there ever was a time that absolutely nothing existed, nothing would exist now.
2. Something exists now.
3. Therefore, there was never a time that absolutely nothing existed.

So, to answer the question, Who made God? No one. God is eternal and does not need a maker. The universe is not eternal and does require a maker.

SKEPTIC: I hear what you're saying, but I still have a hard time believing in a God I can't see.

CHRISTIAN: I understand that struggle. Let me help you think through this. When you see a painting, what proof do you need to conclude that a painter exists? Nothing else besides the painting. The painting, all on its own, is proof there was a painter. You do not need to see the painter to believe that he or she exists. The painting is all the evidence you need. It wouldn't be there if the painter did not exist. And so it is with the universe and God. The universe, all on its own, is compelling evidence for a creator.


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If you like to have short concise answers ready for conversations with nonbelievers, you'll love Charlie Campbell's book: One Minute Answers to Skeptics: Concise Answers to the Top Forty Questions, endorsed by Charles Colson, Norman Geisler and Nancy Leigh DeMoss.