Friday, June 26, 2009


Ken Silva provides a very detailed examination of Philippians 2:5-6

Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped. (Philippians 2:5-6)

What The Scripture Says

How Can We Know For Sure What Is True?

If they do not speak according to this Word, they have no light (Isaiah 8:20).

Do not listen to what the prophets are prophesying to you; they fill you with false hopes. They speak visions from their own minds, not from the mouth of the Lord (Jeremiah 23:16).

Test everything. Hold on to what is good (1 Thessalonians 5:21).

Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true (Acts 17:11).

Christ Is The Very Essence of God

(Phil. 2:6) in very nature God is “affirming” that Jesus is fully God.” And further, the word “nature” here (morphe in the Greek) is “the sum of those qualities that make God specifically God”

Ontologically, what we are saying is, that in this verse of Holy Scripture the Bible is unmistakably teaching that Jesus of Nazareth by being in very nature God is literally made of the same essence that makes God Who He is.
Silva provides an illustration:

Now, you and I are human beings in our nature. Are we not? And as such we are made up of all of the stuff (essence) that comprises a human being.

Christ Was Already Living Before He Lived On Earth

The Deity of Christ Is Not A Human Invention

What The Bible Tells Us About The Historic Person Jesus Of Nazareth

John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God. Here it is again broken down in the original Greek. En arche. In the beginning — before anything originated and began to exist. En ho Logoswas the Word. The Word already was existing. Do you see how this agrees with what Paul wrote in Philippians 2:6? Now John himself is also telling us the Word—Christ Jesus—was already existing.

Colossians 2:9. Here the Apostle Paul tells us — For in Christ pleroma tes Theotes somotikos — in the Greek. This means — “everything that makes God Who He is” lives in the Man Jesus of Nazareth.
Hebrews 1:3 The Son [Jesus] is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of His — [the Father’s] — being. Charakter hautou hupostasis — in the original. The substance—or essence—of God’s exact nature—Deity. Once again we learn here that the Father and the Son are identical in their nature, which is what makes them Who they are—and that is Deity—God. And so Christ Jesus really could say — “He who has seen Me has seen the Father” (John 14:9).

As Dr. Robert Lightner informs us:

The term translated nature morphe in verses 6 and 7 is a critical term in this passage. This word (trans. form in the KJV and NASB) stresses the inner essence or reality of that with which it is associated (cf. Mark 16:12). Christ Jesus, Paul said, is of the very essence (morphe) of God, and in His incarnation He embraced perfect humanity. His complete and absolute deity is here stressed by the apostle
(The Bible Knowledge Commentary, NT, 653,654).

What was Jesus claiming that made His adversaries so mad:

The Savior’s claim to deity infuriated the Jewish leaders (John 5:18) and caused them to accuse Him of blasphemy (John 10:33)” (ibid.). Which you will recall, is the very crime for which Jesus Christ of Nazareth was crucified.

The Deity of Christ Is A Crucial Issue

We need to remember that the Bible tells us to have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them (Ephesians 5:11). We also must understand that the Deity of Christ is Satan’s prime target of attack. And here’s why. In the Gospel of John 8:24 our Lord says something that cuts to the very heart of all that we have been talking about. Jesus of Nazareth, the Lord of Glory, and the only Savior of this lost world is quoted by the Apostle John who is an eyewitness to this event.

But What Does The Watchtower Say To Jehovah’s Witnesses?

Finally Dr. Walter Martin (1928-1989) gives us the benefit of his wisdom in this critical area of the classic historic orthodox Christian faith. From his classic text book The Kingdom of the Cults we read:

No treatment of the deity of Christ would be complete without mentioning the greatest single testimony recorded in the Scriptures. John 20:28 presents that testimony… Following through the sequence of events in verses 26 and 27, we learn that the Lord appeared to Thomas together with the other disciples and presented His body bearing the wounds of Calvary to Thomas for his inspection.

This was no spirit or phantom, no “form” assumed for the occasion, as Jehovah’s Witnesses maintain. This was the very body of Christ that bore the horrible imprints of excruciating torture and the pangs of an ignominious death. Here before the eyes of the unbelieving disciple was the evidence that compelled him by the sheer power of its existence to adore the One who manifested the essence of Deity. “Thomas answered and said unto him, My lord and my God.” This was the only answer Thomas could honestly give; Christ had proved His identity; He was truly “the Lord God.” Let us substantiate this beyond doubt…

The picture is clear. Thomas adored Christ as the risen incarnation of the Deity (Jehovah); John declared that Deity was His from all eternity (John 1:1); and Christ affirmed it irrefutably: “If ye believe not that I am he [Jehovah], ye shall die in your sins.” (John 8:24, cf. Exodus 3:14, bracketed mine). All of the pseudo-scholastic and elusive tactics ever utilized can ever change the plain declarations of God’s Word. Jesus Christ is Lord of all; and like it or not, Jehovah’s Witnesses will never destroy or remove that truth. Regardless of what is done to God’s Word on earth, it remains eternal in the glory, as it is written, “For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven” (Psalm 119:89).

So, Who Are You Going To Believe?

The problem we run into immediately is that none of this agrees with the historic record of the actual Person of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, which we read about in the Bible—the true history of our Lord and Savior—Christ Jesus. This would mean then, according to Holy Scripture, that all people who believe the things that we just read, and who deny His full Deity remain condemned to Hell (see—John 3:36).

You’ll recall that the Apostle John, in his eyewitness deposition we call the Gospel of John, records the real Jesus as saying — “I told you that you would die in your sins; if you do not believe that I Am — [the eternal God Himself come in human flesh] — you will indeed die in your sins.” And so, clearly, we are not dealing with some minor issue here. But rather, this is the heart of the very Gospel of Jesus Christ itself!

We should now be able to see that many who would claim to be Christian really have little idea about what the Bible actually says concerning our great God and Savior Jesus Christ (see—Roman 9:5; Titus 2:13).

The Bible tells us that Jesus went to that grisly death for the joy set before Him (Hebrews 12:2). And what was that joy set before Him? His unfathomable love for —you. Do you see it? God doesn’t just talk about His love for us. No; the Bible says God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us (Romans 5:8).

It Was God Upon That Cross

As has been asked elsewhere: Do you realize that when the very Creator of the universe came into His world there was no room in His world for Him? So, the next time you look at a nativity scene, just think about it. God became man, born as a tiny, helpless, infant making Himself vulnerable to His rebellious creatures. Why? So that He might demonstrate to us what He had said all along in Holy Scripture — the LORD your God goes with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you (Deuteronomy 31:6).

And Now The Rest Is Up To You

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