The Divinity of Christ, part 20: Conclusion
A most magnificent truth-proof of the deity of Christ
This is the final blog in our Divinity of Christ series. First, I will share with you four witnesses to the same truth that Jesus IS God. After that, I will conclude this series with an astounding proof of why Jesus has to be God, or our faith is meaningless (and powerless). This first passage is another one of those proofs that, just by itself, should be a clincher to anyone, unless they deny the plain meanings of the words.
Exodus 15:2 The LORD [Yahweh] is my strength and song, and he [Yahweh] is become my salvation: he is my God, and I will prepare him an habitation; my father's God, and I will exalt him.
We will parse this verse, and then as we examine the other three witnesses, the parsing will not be necessary. So, in this verse, we notice first that “LORD” is in all caps; therefore, it should read:
“Yahweh is my strength and song, …” And let’s put the noun back in place of the pronoun in the next phrase, so instead of saying, “…and he,” we will say:
“Yahweh is my strength and song, and Yahweh is/has become my salvation: he is my God,” etc.
Alright, the average Bible reader at this point will notice nothing unusual. No great revelation there. All it says is that Yahweh is my God. We know that! Ah, but do you know what the Hebrew word is which is translated “salvation?” It is the word Yahshua (variant spelling: Yeshua)! It is the Savior’s name! In the Hebrew, it is a play-on-words in which the word, Yahshua, means both “salvation” and it is the name of the Messiah. So what it is really saying is …
“Yahweh is my strength and song, and Yahweh has become Yahshua: he is my God,” etc. Isn’t that what happened when Mary gave birth in Bethlehem? God became Jesus!! Jesus is God manifested in the flesh!
Look now to Psalm 118. The Bible says that at the mouth of two or three witnesses, let every matter be established. I think it would be significant, and give us some idea of the importance of the doctrine of the divinity of Christ, if we have four witnesses to this fact.
Psalm 118:14 The LORD [Yahweh] is my strength and song, and is become my salvation
We don’t need to parse these words because they say the same thing: God has become Jesus. In this same psalm, we find it repeated in verse 21.
Psalm 118:21 I will praise thee: for thou hast heard me, and art become my salvation [Yahshua/Jesus].
When we turn to Isaiah 12, we find it one more time. Moreover, in this verse we will find it twice, a double witness within this one verse alone.
Isaiah 12:2 Behold, God is my salvation [Yahshua]; [or we could say “God is Jesus,” or “Jesus is God.”] I will trust, and not be afraid: for the LORD JEHOVAH…
We will pause here to note that “the LORD JEHOVAH” is a peculiar construction which is not found very often in the Scriptures. You will notice that it has “lord” in all caps, and then the word “Jehovah” following that. “Jehovah” is a corruption of the name “Yahweh” combined with “Adonai,” which means “lord.” We won’t get into that any deeper, but what it is actually giving is a repetition of the holy name; first the shortened form, Yah, followed by the full name, Yahweh. So it reads (picking it up in mid-verse):
For Yah-Yahweh is my strength and my song; he also has become my salvation. Or to put it very clearly: “Yah, even Yahweh,…has become Jesus.” This is not difficult to understand. Once we learn that the Hebrew word for “salvation” is “yahshua,” then the double meaning of the verse is crystal clear, isn’t it? Yahweh has become Jesus; or, Jesus…is…God!
I could go on in this blog series for many more posts, piling up proof after proof after proof, but I believe that what has been set forth in these 20 essay-blogs ought to be more than sufficient to demonstrate from the Scriptures the deity of Christ.
As I bring this long study to a close, I want to share just one more magnificent reason why Jesus is God. This one will require that I provide some considerable background exposition. The background is necessary so that we see it in all its staggering profundity. Matthew 13 is where many of the kingdom parables of Jesus are found. We want to focus on that one-verse parable found in verse 44.
Matthew 13:44 Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field; the which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field.
I quote this parable just to open the scene because I think that many in my audience have heard me expound this parable before. (In fact, I will do so again very soon, because in my monthly Bible lecture series available through our CD Ministry (Print out page 10 on the Order Form), I am currently teaching on the parables of Matthew 13. Therefore, I am not going to provide all the details of the interpretation of this parable at this time, but here I will just give you the bottom line.
The bottom line is that this parable is about a love story. A love story between God and Israel. The treasure symbolizes Israel. The field is the world. God found Israel in the world, and then He hid Israel, isn’t that what it says?
We recognize the peculiarity there because it is unusual for someone to find something and then immediately hide it—except… It is not so odd when we remember that it is a treasure. Someone who finds a treasure might very well want to hide his treasure, to keep thieves from stealing it, to keep wicked criminals from destroying the treasure, or whatever.
This truth is exactly what history has demonstrated for many centuries. True Israel’s identity is even to this day still hidden from the masses. Because, almost everybody in the world points to the Jewish people and identifies them as Israel. But some of us have come to know that the vast majority of the modern Jewish people are not descended from Jacob-Israel. This is admitted in many sources written by Jews themselves. The best that can be said is that a small remnant of Jews might have some ancestry from the tribe of Judah or Levi. We are speaking merely on the physical ancestry level here.
Continuing to briefly interpret the parable, God sells all that He has in order to buy the field, which—to repeat—represents the world. In what currency did God pay for the world? He paid in blood. How much did He pay for the field? The answer to that is found in the most famous verse in all Christendom today, John 3:16.
John 3:16 For God so loved the world [the field], that he gave his only begotten Son, …
By the way, when God gave Himself in the form of His Son to die in order to purchase the world to get the treasure in the world, it does not mean that He wanted only the treasure, and that therefore, the rest of the world could go to hell (literally). Yet, that is what many people believe. In my view, the gospel, the good news, is better than that….much better! We won’t get off on that tangent here.
Back to Exodus 19 now. This love story is more clearly seen with the help of this passage. You see, God not only chose Israel to be a special people, but God actually married the Israel nation at Mt. Sinai. Moses acted as the minister-officiant at the wedding ceremony. He conveyed the words of the Husband to the representatives of the people of Israel, asking her if she would be an obedient wife to her Husband.
Exodus 19:5 Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine:
Two points here: one, this is one of the places which identifies Israel as God’s special treasure in the parable. Number two, we notice that God says all the earth is mine. Since He makes that forceful statement about owning the field, it would seem odd indeed if He were to purchase the world with His own blood, and then turn around and discard it. I think He has other plans for the world other than to let it go to hell, don’t you?
As it turned out, the marriage between God and Israel was rocky from the very beginning. The wife was constantly worshiping other gods, which constituted adultery in the eyes of God. According to God’s law, the penalty for adultery is death. And so, after centuries of Israel’s disobedience, with His wife running around and committing idolatry-adultery, the Husband finally divorced His wife. Divorced? What about the death penalty? That comes later. For now (i.e., ca. 745-721 B.C.), Yahweh simple divorced Israel. We find that verified in…
Jeremiah 3:8 And I saw, when for all the causes whereby backsliding Israel committed adultery I had put her away, and given her a bill of divorce; yet her treacherous sister Judah feared not, but went and played the harlot also.
We don’t want to get too far afield here, but it is important to realize that in the Bible, the terms “put away” and “divorce” are two different things. Generally speaking, “put away” refers only to what we today call a marital “separation.”
Spouses are not legally divorced until a document called a bill of divorce or writ of divorce is actually decreed and given into the hand of the one being divorced. It is also now obvious that divorce is not a sin; otherwise, God would have sinned. I examined the details of God’s laws on divorce in a two-part lecture which I did nearly 30 years ago. The audio quality is not up to par, so I hope to get those re-recorded before long, and will announce their availability then.
The next part of this eons-long love story involves the fact that God still loves Israel. Oh yes, God loves the world alright, but He loves Israel with a very special love. You see, even after He divorced her, He still wants to be her Husband. But there is a legal problem here. His own law seems to preclude that possibility. Let’s read the law.
Deuteronomy 24:1 When a man hath taken a wife, and married her, and it come to pass that she find no favour in his eyes, because he hath found some uncleanness in her: then let him write her a bill of divorcement, and give it in her hand, and send her out of his house.
God had provided a house for his national wife, Israel, in the land formerly known as the land of Canaan. But, beginning in about 745 B.C., He sent her out of their house. He caused the Assyrian armies to invade and deport millions upon millions of Israelites to the areas south of the Caucasus mountains.
The Bible and history both confirm that those multiplied millions of people never came back to that old land. Instead, over the centuries, they migrated in all directions. But chiefly, they migrated in a northwesterly direction and became known as the Caucasian people of Europe. Many of you who are reading this are of those people; in other words, you are Israelites!
We will pause the discussion of the national fulfillment of the divorce at this point to discuss the individual level.
2 And when she is departed out of his house, she may go and be another man's wife.
Some churches teach that a husband and wife can never divorce for any reason. I was brought up in the Roman Catholic religion and that was the doctrine. No divorce, ever! Other denominations teach that a couple can divorce but only because of adultery. (I am using that word adultery here in the sense that the churches use it.) But how can that be, since the law states that the penalty for adultery is death, not divorce. Still other churches teach that if one does divorce, that he or she cannot remarry.
All of that is based on their ignorance of this law—and their misunderstanding and misinterpretation of Jesus’ and Paul’s statements in the New Testament, all of which I had clarified in my aforementioned lectures on the subject. God’s law in verse 2 clearly states that a divorcee may remarry. But now notice this further statute of the law.
Deuteronomy 24:3 And if the latter husband hate her, and write her a bill of divorcement, and giveth it in her hand, and sendeth her out of his house; or if the latter husband die, which took her to be his wife;
4 Her former husband, which sent her away, may not take her again to be his wife, after that she is defiled; for that is abomination before the LORD: and thou shalt not cause the land to sin, which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance.
To restate it: In a situation where a woman is divorced, and she re-marries, and then the second husband either divorces her also, or he dies; God’s law states that she may not re-marry her first husband. So, do you see God’s predicament as the Husband? And yet not only did God desire to remarry Israel, He came right out and predicted that He would remarry her? This is found in the book of Hosea.
Hosea 2:1 Say ye unto your brethren, Ammi; and to your sisters, Ruhamah.
2 Plead with your mother, plead: for she is not my wife, neither am I her husband: let her therefore put away her whoredoms out of her sight, and her adulteries from between her breasts;
Remember, Deuteronomy 24:4 said that… “Her former husband, which sent her away, may not take her again to be his wife, after that she is defiled;”
Was Israel defiled after He sent her away? Absolutely! She whored around with all kinds of heathen gods. God goes on listing all the wickedness of his ex-wife all the way down through the centuries which takes us through verse 13, and then comes the good news. The prophecy here is that after many centuries that God would…
14 Therefore, behold, I will allure her, and bring her into the wilderness, and speak comfortably unto her.
15 And I will give her her vineyards from thence, and the valley of Achor for a door of hope: and she shall sing there, as in the days of her youth, and as in the day when she came up out of the land of Egypt.
16 And it shall be at that day, saith the LORD [Yahweh], that thou shalt call me Ishi; and shalt call me no more Baali.
Do you know the meaning of those two names: Ishi and Baali? God predicts that at some future time, Israel would call Him “Ishi,” “my Husband,” and no longer would she call her God Baali,” “Lord.” The use of the word Baali is another Hebrew play-on-words because Israel had worshiped many false gods, who were collectively called Baalim, which is the Hebrew plural for “Baal,” “Lord.”
So if Israel will one day again call God her husband, then apparently somehow God is going to do the seemingly impossible according to the part of His law which states that “Her former husband, which sent her away, may not take her again to be his wife.”
17 For I will take away the names of Baalim out of her mouth, and they shall no more be remembered by their name.
18 And in that day will I make a covenant for them with the beasts of the field, and with the fowls of heaven, and with the creeping things of the ground: and I will break the bow and the sword and the battle out of the earth, and will make them to lie down safely.
19 And I will betroth thee unto me for ever; yea, I will betroth thee unto me in righteousness, and in judgment, and in lovingkindness, and in mercies.
20 I will even betroth thee unto me in faithfulness: and thou shalt know the LORD [Yahweh].
Betrothal. It is pretty clear that somehow God and Israel will be husband and wife again.
21 And it shall come to pass in that day, I will hear, saith the LORD, I will hear the heavens, and they shall hear the earth;
22 And the earth shall hear the corn, and the wine, and the oil; and they shall hear Jezreel.
23 And I will sow her unto me in the earth; and I will have mercy upon her that had not obtained mercy; and I will say to them which were not my people, Thou art my people; and they shall say, Thou art my God.
So now we have shown not only that God desired to remarry Israel, but He came right out and predicted that He would remarry her. But how can He do it in a lawful manner? There is only one way it could be done. In Romans, chapter 7, Paul comments on this passage in Deuteronomy, the laws of divorce. Here we will find the answer, the sacred secret, if you will, of how God can lawfully remarry Israel.
Romans 7:1 Know ye not, brethren, (for I speak to them that know the law,) how that the law hath dominion over a man as long as he liveth?
2 For the woman which hath an husband is bound by the law to her husband so long as he liveth; but if the husband be dead, she is loosed from the law of her husband.
3 So then if, while her husband liveth, she be married to another man, she shall be called an adulteress: but if her husband be dead, she is free from that law; so that she is no adulteress, though she be married to another man.
Let’s stop there and analyze this. In verse one, Paul states the obvious: and in this case, it doesn’t matter if one is talking about Mosaic law, or Roman law, or British law, or American laws, they apply only to the living. Law has no dominion over a dead person. Of course, someone will bring up the idea of probating a will or something like that, but that is failing to see the point; namely, that Paul is speaking in generalities here. In general, laws have no power over you once you are dead.
In verses 2 and 3, Paul gives the example of a woman who is married to another man while her first husband still lives. She is an adulteress, Paul says. Was Paul contradicting the law in Deuteronomy? No, because, obviously, what he means in this example, is that the woman was not properly divorced before marrying the second husband.
And from that law in Deuteronomy, we know that even if she were lawfully divorced, and then she married another, she is still bound by law to the first husband in the sense that if her second husband died, she could not go back and remarry the first husband.
Why not? Because it’s the law! Do you see that? In other words, even though she is no longer married to him, the law regarding remarrying the first husband still has dominion over her as long as he still lives.
So, I am sure that many of you now understand the sacred secret of the only way that God could remarry Israel would be if He died and then resurrected. And so, two thousand years ago, that is what He did!
This is an astounding revelation of the Scriptures, and it is a revelation which, alas, most church-goers will never perceive in their lifetime. But if you see this revelation, then you understand that Jesus had to be God or else the whole idea of remarrying Israel would be an abomination! I believe this is one of the deep things of Scripture. And when you see it, it is also one of the most powerful proofs of the deity of Jesus Christ.
Furthermore, when God became a new person—lawfully speaking—and He was eligible to marry Israel again, it is no surprise that He would not want to marry some whore. He wants to marry a virgin! And by God, that is what He will have in each and every one of us—spiritual virginity! That is why Paul goes on to say in verse 4…
4 Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God.
And that is why Paul said in…
2 Corinthians 11:2 For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ.
How did we become spiritual chaste virgins? Well, that is why Paul said in…
2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
You see, my brothers and sisters, even though He had divorced his adulterous wife, God loved her so much that He volunteered to pay the death penalty for her. In so doing, God Himself became eligible to remarry His true love, Israel! We, as individual Israelites, by our faith in what Jesus did for us, are also considered (by God) to have died, and through baptism, we are raised in newness of life and we have become as chaste virgins.
We are then fit to have spiritual intercourse or union with our Husband resulting in our bringing forth much fruit both now and later. Fruit now, in terms of the fruits of the Spirit manifesting in our lives—love, joy, peace, kindness, forgiveness, etc.
But later and ultimately, our spiritual intercourse with our Husband-God will result in each of us bringing forth the Manchild, which is the Christ in you being fully formed and coming forth into a glorified body! That is, into immortality and incorruption! Hallelujah that Jesus… is…God! Because otherwise, all of that would not be possible. Amen!
END OF SERIES