THE EVANGELICAL JESUS CHRIST
THE LORD JESUS CHRIST AND THE RIGHT RECOGNITION OF HIM
The Lord Jesus Christ is a misunderstood personality in the realm of ‘Christianity’. Majority of Christians believe Him to be the Second Person of God, was God in the beginning who became God-man on earth and either the same now in heaven or just God The Son who is now co-located, co-dominator and co-equal with God The Father. This is very confusing, and this is the biggest reason why the Catholic Church declared the trinitarian doctrine a mystery – something that could never be understood. However, there is a need to fully understand Christ for herein lies people’s chance of attaining eternal life on the day that He returns.
Who is the Lord Jesus Christ and how should we recognize Him?
(John 3:16-18 NKJV in all verses unless otherwise noted)
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.
“He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
The Lord Jesus Christ is the only begotten Son of God. We ought to believe in Him as The Savior sent to save the world from its impending end as already decreed by God, The Almighty Father. Anyone who fails to believe in Lord Jesus is already condemned and will go down with the world in its end.
THE WORD THAT WAS MADE A SON
How did The Lord Jesus Christ become God’s only begotten Son? When did He begin to exist?
“But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah,
Though you are little among the thousands of Judah,
Yet out of you shall come forth to Me
The One to be Ruler in Israel,
Whose goings forth are from of old,
The prophet Micah prophesied about "The One to be Ruler in Israel" or The Christ whose goings forth or origins (ibid, Orthodox Jewish Bible) are from everlasting. How is it that The Christ's origins are form everlasting?
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made.
That God is from everlasting is a fact, and so it is also true with His Word. The Son of God, Jesus Christ, originated from The Word and was already with God since everlasting. In fact, through Him God created everything. However, was the sonship of The Word also from everlasting? No it is not. There was a definite time when God made The Word to be His Son:
“I will declare the decree:
The Lord has said to Me,
‘You are My Son,
Today I have begotten You.
The sonship of The Word began when God made Him His Son. How so? There was a day when God said “Today I have begotten You.” When was that day? Only God knows, however it is certain to be before the creation of the world. Why are we sure?
And now, O Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with You before the world was.
The fact that The Lord Jesus remembered the glory that He shared with The Father even before the world was created only proves that He was already made God's beloved Son at that time, with His own intellect and emotions, otherwise how could He remember? This truth is further strengthened by the fact that God sent His Son to the world (John 3:16 / 6:38), The Son who was and remained to be His Word (John 1:1 / Revelation 19:13).
Since The Son already existed even before the creation of the world, what was His form or state of being? He was at that time in spirit form since man was not yet created. He became a human being when He was commissioned to the world to be with mankind; by virtue of His spiritual conception with His earthly mother, Mary (Luke 1:35 / John 1:1).
IGLESIA NI CRISTO’S (MCMXIV) MISUNDERSTANDING ABOUT CHRIST’S BEGINNING
Although the Iglesia ni Cristo (MCMXIV) is correct with their understanding that only The Father is God as taught by Lord Jesus himself (Jn 17:1,3), and that Lord Jesus (at present time) is man in nature, they are mistaken in their denial of His existence before His conception by Mary. They would readily express that The Son did not exist in the beginning, but was rather, just a plan or a thought that emanates from God. They would then try to counter the biblical soundness of the verse in Micah 5:2 and John 1:1 by citing the testimony of Apostle Peter:
(1 Peter 1:20)
He indeed was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you…
They truly MISUNDERSTOOD this verse! How could The Son of God, who would be revealed later as The Lord Jesus Christ, be FOREORDAINED or appointed in advance (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/foreordain) if He was not yet in existence? The FOREORDINATION only proves that He already existed! It was the world (and not The Son) that was not yet in existence, thus the need to ordain Him (who already existed) in advance.
Here are valid arguments and critical logic that the INC (MCMXIV) group cannot reconcile with their non-acceptance of the existence of Lord Jesus Christ before His existence as a man:
1. If The Son did not exist before the creation of the world, how could He share with God’s glory? If His existence was just as a thought or plan of God without His own intellect, feelings and emotions, how could He remember the elated feeling of being glorified while He was The Word in the beginning (Jn 17:5)?
2. How could He come down from heaven if He was not yet in existence (Jn 3:13; 6:38, 62)?
3. Who was sent, merely a plan about The Son or The Son Himself (Jn 3:17)?
It is very clear that The Lord Jesus Christ existed as God’s beloved Son even before He became a man basing on His own testimonies. However, His existence in the beginning as The Word does not prove the teaching that He is God.
AND THE WORD WAS GOD
The last clause of John 1:1 which reads, “and The Word was God”, became the cornerstone of the Christ-God teaching. They understood this to be stating what they believe as fact that The Lord Jesus Christ is God. But wait, why does it say 'and The Word WAS GOD' and not 'IS GOD'? Could it mean that He was God but ceased to be God at one point? Of course not, God is the same and does not change (Psalm 102:27 / Malachi 3:6). The clause 'and the Word was God' simply implies that The Word possessed the powerful trait of God, being the source or speaker of The Word (Isa 46:11; Luk 1:37). This is of the same logic when God once called His people the Israelites as ‘gods’ but not to recognize them as other Gods for it is He Himself who does not recognize any other God like Him (Isa 44:6, 8). He called them 'gods' only to refer to them as “to whom the word of God came” (Jn 10:34-35).
In the relationship between The Father and The Son, or The Speaker and The Word, there is only one God. He is The Father, the same speaker of The Word.
CHRIST DOES NOT POSSESS GOD’S ATTRIBUTES
Despite this biblical truth, many people continue to claim that Christ is God – in fact for them, He is both God and man. How are they proven wrong by the gospel? How does Christ differ from God?
To fully satisfy the questions and doubt of those who are not yet enlightened with the above quoted testimony from The Savior Himself, let us continue our study and find out if The Lord Jesus possesses the unique and special attributes of God of being Almighty (Omnipotent), Present Anywhere (Omnipresent) and All-Knowing (Omniscient). Any individual entity can never be the true God without possessing these three God specific attributes.
Is The Lord Jesus Christ Almighty (Omnipotent) like God The Father?
I can of Myself do nothing. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is righteous, because I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me.
Based on the pronouncement of Christ, He cannot do anything by His own capacity. If He is powerless by Himself, then He is NOT Almighty! How else did He prove that He is not (The) Almighty?
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.
The very fact that The Father, or God, is greater than Christ seals the fact that He is not Almighty like God.
How about the second attribute of God of being Present Anywhere (Omnipresent), does Christ possess that attribute? From the same verse just quoted above, the answer is laid out:
…‘I am going away and coming back to you.’… ‘I am going to the Father,’ …
If The Lord Jesus Christ needs to come back to the world after He left to go to The Father, then does it not only mean that He is not in the world and thus, not Present Anywhere?
With two out of three of God’s attributes not possessed by Christ, we can already arrive at an unquestionable conclusion that Christ is not and cannot be God. But, for the sake of complete clarification and to eliminate any remaining doubt in anyone, let us also find out, does Christ know everything or All-Knowing (Omniscient)?
(Matthew 24:36, NIV)
But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.
Here is another admittance of The Lord Jesus - that He does not know the day or hour of His second coming or day of judgment. This only proves yet another fact that He does not possess God’s attribute of being All-Knowing (Omniscient).
The Lord Jesus Christ does not posses any of the three attributes or qualities of God, therefore He is not God! Those three specific attributes are only possessed by The Father, for He is the one introduced by Christ as the ONLY TRUE GOD (John 17:1, 3). Therefore, the world’s acceptance of Christ as also another God should be rejected for good, that we may remain inclined with the truth of Christ.
LORD JESUS CHRIST IS MAN, NOT GOD-MAN
What other biblical fact prove that The Lord Jesus Christ is not God like His Father? First of all, when He introduced God, He introduced The Father as the only true God. But also because of His state of being at present time. What is the state of being of Lord Jesus Christ at present according to Him?
But now you seek to kill Me, a Man who has told you the truth which I heard from God. Abraham did not do this.
But they were terrified and frightened, and supposed they had seen a spirit. And He said to them, “Why are you troubled? And why do doubts arise in your hearts? Behold My hands and My feet, that it is I Myself. Handle Me and see, for a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see I have.”
After The Lord Jesus Christ's commissioning to the world He already introduced Himself to be a man, meaning not a spirit. In fact, after His resurrection from the dead He appeared before His apostles. In this meeting, the apostles were terrified and frightened for they knew He died just three days earlier. They thought they had seen a spirit; they did not believe what they saw to be the same Jesus who was with them for three years. But the risen Christ corrected their misconception, and in the process differentiated Himself from being a spirit like God. He offered His hands and feet for them to touch and witness and to show them that He is the same person, of flesh and bones, to further prove that He was not a spirit.
The Lord Jesus Christ's admittance that He was a man and the fact that He remained a man after resurrection already proves that He is not God. But what kind of a man is He? Is He just like any man? Of course not! He is a special and unique human being because He is God's Son. Apostle Peter declared this about The Lord Jesus Christ:
“Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a Man attested by God to you by miracles, wonders, and signs which God did through Him in your midst, as you yourselves also know— Him, being delivered by the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God, you have taken by lawless hands, have crucified, and put to death...
Although The Lord Jesus Christ is the beloved Son of God He is man in nature. However, He is not just like any man, He is special in such that God performed His miracles, wonders and signs through Him. And, at the end of His earthly deployment He was given all the authorities in heaven and on earth:
And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.
PRESENT DAY CHRIST IN HEAVEN IS MAN
The Lord Jesus Christ is back with The Father in heaven (John 14:28) possessing the authority of God to rule heaven and earth. Could it be that He changed from that of being a man to that of being a spirit or God? Where is He situated in heaven? What remains to be the truth concerning the being of Christ now that He is already in heaven?
After the Lord Jesus had spoken to them, he was taken up into heaven and he sat at the right hand of God.
The Lord Jesus Christ is seating at the right hand of God. What is His state of being?
Let Your hand be upon the man of Your right hand,
Upon the son of man whom You made strong for Yourself.
King David prophesied that the one sitting at the right hand of God is a man. It is undeniable that the one he referred to in this verse is none other than The Lord Jesus Christ for He is 'the Son of man whom God made strong for Himself.
Here is another certainty and proof that The Christ remained to be a man, and will still be a man when He returns:
Now when He had spoken these things, while they watched, He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight. And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as He went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel, who also said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven.”
(1 John 3:2)
Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is.
When The Lord ascended into heaven, two men testified that He will return in the same manner as He was seen going into heaven. This is the same spirit of Apostle John when he declared that we shall see The Lord Jesus Christ when He is revealed on His second coming or judgment day. If He can be seen, then still He is not God!
The teaching that The Lord Jesus Christ is God, and is the supposed second person of the trinity or triune God, is not biblical. The fact that the teaching of the trinity itself is deemed a MYSTERY by the Catholic church – the same church who invented or formulated this dogma - only proves this. Because this doctrine contradicts the will of God who wants people to KNOW AND UNDERSTAND Him:
Thus says the Lord:
“Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom,Let not the mighty man glory in his might,Nor let the rich man glory in his riches; But let him who glories glory in this,That he understands and knows Me,That I am the Lord, exercising loving kindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth.For in these I delight,” says the Lord.
From God’s standpoint, all of 'Christianity' who believe in the trinity - a teaching filled with and bound for confusion; and in the teaching that Christ is Himself God, failed God in His expectation. It is but high time that we open up our hearts and minds and get on track with the truth and correct our understanding about God and His Son by rejecting the teaching that mystifies God and alienate people from Him.