Presentation on theme: "Session 1 – Who is God? In this first session we will look at the foundation to every religion out there, who do they believe God is We will look at the."— Presentation transcript:
Session 1 – Who is God? In this first session we will look at the foundation to every religion out there, who do they believe God is We will look at the overwhelming Biblical evidence for the Deity of Jesus Christ and the Triune God
The Trinity The doctrine of the Trinity is simply that there is one eternal being of God - indivisible, infinite. This one being of God is shared by three co- equal, co-eternal persons, the Father, the Son, and the Spirit.
We are not saying that the Father is the Son, or the Son the Spirit, or the Spirit the Father. Too many passages show us they are not the same person Jesus prays to the Father Jesus goes to the Father The Father and Son send the Spirit That is called Modalism
Nothing is more fundamental to the Christian faith than the nature of God Why believe in the Trinity? Because the Bible reveals a Triune God “I am the LORD, and there is none else, there is no God beside me: I girded thee, though thou hast not known me:” - Isaiah 45:5 First we see the Bible says there is only one God, period!
“Ye are my witnesses, saith the LORD, and my servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.” - Isaiah 43:10 Scripture is clear, one God… But as we look at scripture as a whole, we have a clear teaching that the one being God is shared by three persons, the Father, Son, and Spirit
God the Father Romans 1:7: “To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.” Most people don’t have a hard problem with Father God as seen in the Bible, if they deny the Trinity they tend to believe God the Father is God, not Jesus or the Holy Spirit
God the Son (Jesus Christ) What did the early church believe about Jesus? Some people say that they didn’t believe that he was God Ignatius (Epistle to the Romans) “For our God Jesus Christ, being in the Father, is the more plainly visible.” Nothing could be further from the truth
Polycarp said: “Now may the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the eternal High Priest himself, the Son of God Jesus Christ, build you up in faith and truth and in all gentleness and in all freedom from anger and forbearance and steadfastness and patient endurance and purity, and may he give to you a share and a place among his saints, and to us with you, and to all those under heaven who will yet believe in our Lord and God Jesus Christ and in his Father who raised him from the dead.”
John 20:28 “And Thomas answered and said unto him, My LORD and my God.” What does the Bible say about the deity of Christ? Is Jesus God? Jesus existed before Creation John 17:5: “ Now, Father, glorify Me in Your presence with that glory I had with You before the world existed.” Some say Jesus was a created being, but that doesn’t make sense in light of scripture
Colossians 1:16-17: “ For by Him 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. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist.” The Bible is very clear that everything besides God was created (including Angels and Heaven) Jesus has to be God
Revelations 1:8: “I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.” Revelation 21:6: “And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.” Jesus is identified as being eternal over and over in the Bible
Rev 1:17:18: “And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last… (But wait there’s more) I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death. Rev 22:13: “I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.”
Isaiah 44:6: "Thus says the LORD, the King of Israel and his Redeemer, the LORD of hosts: 'I am the first and I am the last, And there is no God besides Me.” But the problem get’s even worse if you reject the Biblical teaching of Christ’s deity The title given to Jesus in the New Testament of the First and the Last is not a new title in the book of revelation, that title has been used before in the Old Testament
Christophanies in the Old Testament Gen 18: 1 “Then the L ORD appeared to him by the terebinth trees of Mamre, as he was sitting in the tent door in the heat of the day.” John 1:18: “No one has ever seen God. The One and Only Son the One who is at the Father’s side He has revealed Him.” The Lord and two angels, they eat with Abraham, and then the angels then go down to Sodom,
This cannot be God the father, it only can be explained by Jesus Christ appearing throughout the Old Testament Joshua 5:13-15: “When Joshua was by Jericho, he lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, a man was standing before him with his drawn sword in his hand. And Joshua went to him and said to him, “Are you for us, or for our adversaries?” 14 And he said, “No; but I am the commander of the army of the L ORD. Now I have come.”
…And Joshua fell on his face to the earth and worshiped and said to him, “What does my lord say to his servant?” 15 And the commander of the L ORD 's army said to Joshua, “Take off your sandals from your feet, for the place where you are standing is holy.” And Joshua did so.” Who is the Angel of the Lord? This isn’t the only time we see him in the OT, we know exactly who this is
Exodus 3:2-6: “And the angel of the L ORD appeared to him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush. He looked, and behold, the bush was burning, yet it was not consumed. 3 And Moses said, “I will turn aside to see this great sight, why the bush is not burned.” 4 When the L ORD saw that he turned aside to see, God called to him out of the bush, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.” 5 Then he said, “Do not come near; take your sandals off your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.”
It’s very clear that whoever appeared to Joshua is also the voice who spoke to Moses from the burning bush, and the voice at the burning bush is identified as God John 8:58: “Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am.” God takes on the title “I am” at the burning bush when talking to Moses And the pick up stones to stone Him
John 19:7: “ The Jews answered him, “We have a law, and according to our law He ought to die, because He made Himself the Son of God.” There was no law against making yourself out to be a prophet or agent or representative of God… only to claim to be God himself. The Jews understood Jesus’ claims, they tried to stone him more than once
Isaiah 45:22-23: “Look to Me, and be saved, All you ends of the earth! For I am God, and there is no other. I have sworn by Myself; The word has gone out of My mouth in righteousness, And shall not return, That to Me every knee shall bow, Every tongue shall take an oath.” Is Jesus the God of the Old Testament? Many people see Jesus as the God of the New Testament and the Father as the God of the Old Testament, that’s not correct.
Phil 2:8-13: “He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death— even to death on a cross. For this reason God highly exalted Him and gave Him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow— of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth—and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” Sound Familiar to You?
Isaiah's Prophecy fulfilled by Jesus Isaiah 53:1: “Who has believed our report? And to whom has the arm of the L ORD (YHWH) been revealed?” Isaiah 6:9-13: “ And He replied: Go! Say to these people: Keep listening, but do not understand; keep looking, but do not perceive. Dull the minds of these people; deafen their ears and blind their eyes;
otherwise they might see with their eyes and hear with their ears, understand with their minds, turn back, and be healed. Then I said, “Until when, Lord?” And He replied: Until cities lie in ruins without inhabitants, houses are without people, the land is ruined and desolate, and the L ORD drives the people far away, leaving great emptiness in the land. Though a tenth will remain in the land, it will be burned again. Like the terebinth or the oak that leaves a stump when felled, the holy seed is the stump.”
John 12:37-42: “But although He had done so many signs before them, they did not believe in Him, that the word of Isaiah the prophet might be fulfilled, which he spoke: “Lord, who has believed our report? And to whom has the arm of the L ORD been revealed?” Therefore they could not believe, because Isaiah said again… We have a direct fulfillment of those verses in the book of John which shows that Jesus is God (YWHW) of the Old Testament
“He has blinded their eyes and hardened their hearts, Lest they should see with their eyes, Lest they should understand with their hearts and turn, So that I should heal them.” These things Isaiah said when he saw His glory and spoke of Him. There is example after example of this Hebrews 1:13: “ But to which of the angels has He ever said: “Sit at My right hand, Till I make Your enemies Your footstool”?
Psalms 110:1: “The L ORD said to my Lord, “Sit at My right hand, Till I make Your enemies Your footstool.” The L ORD shall send the rod of Your strength out of Zion. Rule in the midst of Your enemies!” How do they try to get around this? They claim the First Lord = YHWH, Second Lord = Adoni Turns out this is a grammatical error, and the oldest texts don’t have a difference
Jesus was and should be worshipped Matthew 14:33 “Then they that were in the ship came and worshipped him, saying, Of a truth thou art the Son of God.” Revelation 5:13 “ I heard every creature in heaven, on earth, under the earth, on the sea, and everything in them say: Blessing and honor and glory and dominion to the One seated on the throne, and to the Lamb, forever and ever!”
Revelation 22:9: “ Then he said to me, “See that you do not do that. For I am your fellow servant, and of your brethren the prophets, and of those who keep the words of this book. Worship God.” Only God can be worshipped Different words for worship? The fact that two Greek words are translated worship doesn’t help (at all) their case
John 1:1-3: “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.” The classic example of Jesus as God “In the beginning was the Word” The word used here is a timeless verb to describe the Word
“and the Word was God” Face to face with God John 1:14: “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.” It means “Pitched His tent among us” God (Jesus) Pitched his tent among us The Word (Jesus) has exegeted the father (Made him known)
Jesus died, how can God die? Jesus died as a sacrifice for our sins, read the Old Testament, the sacrifice was a physical thing Jesus did not spiritually die, he told the thief on the cross that today he would be with him in paradise Luke 23:43: “ And Jesus said to him, “Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.”
The Bible is very clear that God will redeem us from sin, not create some creature or being to do it for him. The argument doesn’t even make sense if he’s a human, because our bodies are all that die too when we are killed The Bible is transparently clear that Jesus is God
The Holy Spirit is God Acts 5:3-4 “But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of the price of the land? Whiles it remained, was it not thine own? and after it was sold, was it not in thine own power? why hast thou conceived this thing in thine heart? thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God.” How do we know the Holy Spirit is a person and not just a force?
1 Cor 12:11: “All these are empowered by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one individually as he wills.” More examples: John 14:26: “But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.” The Spirit Intercedes (Romans 8:26)
We see them together in scripture Matthew 3:16-17 “When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him. And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”
But how can three refer to one? When dealing with God we are dealing with the infinite, there isn’t a problem with the being of God being shared by three persons We often give examples of things to explain this (water, light, humans) But they all fall short to some degree
But why the Trinity? Some people object to the Trinity, and say it doesn’t add anything important to Christian doctrine Many don’t realize how beautiful the doctrine of the Trinity really is A God of Love 1 John 4:8: “He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.”
Love is an action and expression of a person The question is, how can an eternal God be (by nature) love, if there isn’t anyone to love Who did God love for eternity? Before mankind existed, who was that expressed to? The Trinity shows us how, within the Godhead, there is a community that love can be expressed in
The Father loves the Son, who loves the Spirit, who loves the Father God is complete within himself, God wasn’t sitting around for eternity lonely wishing someone else existed God doesn’t need us to love Him in order to be complete, he is sufficient without us God speaks according to the Bible, who was He speaking to for eternity?
All humans desire and want community The Bible tells us that we are created in the image of God Gen 1:27: “So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” It makes sense why we desire community and relationship so much, we’re created in the image of God, and he is a community and has relationship within the Godhead
Mankind has searched for unity within diversity for a long time Our dollar bill E Pluribus Unum Out of Many, One We have universities, and the idea behind that is finding unity in diversity We live in the effect (God is the cause) and the only way to have united within diversity in the effect is if you have it in the cause
Only in Christianity does love, community, and relationship precede life, if you don’t have the Trinity life precedes those things, which means we end up defining love on our own terms, not on an eternal standard A God who is incomplete within himself cannot be all powerful “If love is the heart of existence, and God is love, it is within the Trinity itself that we hunger for relationships”- Ravi Zacharias
Memory Verse John 8:58: “Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am.”