Islamathon!

The following is a long ongoing discussion I am having with an Islamic opposer of Christ’s deity on Alpha and Omega Ministries’ Facebook page. Setting oneself up against Christ’s deity ipso facto sets oneself up against God’s whole revelation as revealed by the Prophets, Apostles, and Jesus Christ Himself. (John 5:46; 8:24,42,44; Hebrews 1:1-3) . I will continue to update the conversation as he responds to me.

“Jews also like Muslims don’t believe in the Trinity dose that mean thay are worshiping a different God to Christians or rather they have a different concept about God?”

yes Jesus said many times that the Jews did not know the Father, for if they did they would accept the Son. He probably said this a few dozen times in John.

My reading of that Exodus passage is that the Jews did not worship the calf as YHWH but as another god besides YHWH. However today and in the time of Jesus they worship YHWH. The evidence is Jesus says in John (ch.4:21) “We [Jews] know what… we worship for salvation is for the Jews”. Jews never in the time of Jesus or today believe that God is a Trinity. In this both Muslims and Jews agree but Christians believe that God is not just one person but he is also the Son and the H.Spirit. I agree with you that Jews and Christians have a different God if you mean God is Jesus but I disagree if you refer to God as the Father.

No, Jesus was explaining to her that The Father will be worshiped in Spirit and in Truth. Not in Synagogues or sacrifices as before. Salvation is from *from* the Jewish people, because until Christ, people would have to follow the Temple Ceremonies that pointed to Christ, and that would be the means of grace. The Jews who reject Jesus rejected the Father, as Jesus makes plain in John 14:6.

Justin, Jesus says in John (4:21) the Jews know who God was because they knew what they worshiped and salvation was for the Jews and not the Samritans, i.e. the Gentiles.

A Rabbi comes up to Jesus and says to him, “you are right teacher ther…e is only one God and besides him there is no other”. And Jesus praised this Jewish man for his correct thinking (Mk 12:28-34)

The Jews did know who God was and at no time did Jesus rebuke or corrected their understanding. He rebuke them for many other things but not who they worshiped.

Justine, fine Jesus corrected the Jews for their concept of worship but not whom they worship or their concept of God.

On a side note it says in Ezekiel (43:21:25) that the traditional sacrifices will be brought back by the Messiah along with the temple ceremonies.

Notice how Jesus says “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” as it is only part of Christian belief, but not all the way there.

Also you keep repeating Salvation is for the Jews and not the Gentiles yet Jesus said in the verse you are quoting
“”You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, for salvation is *from* the Jews.
But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him.
God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.”

1) He says that salvation is *from* the Jews not for as you keep erroneously repeating

2) Jesus said we would worship in spirit in Truth. Truth is the complete revelation of God, which is ultimately the only Begotten Son of God. (See Hebrews Chapters 1 and 2)

3) Jesus says in the last verse that those who worship God must do so in Spirit and in Truth. If not They die in their sins (John 3:16, John 8:24, John 10:7-11)

No one has any doubts that The Lord God is One. One Being consisting of three persons, equal in power and glory. Jesus says in John 8:24 “I told you that you would die in your sins, for unless you believe that I am he you will die in your sins.”

and further down in verse 58 he proclaims “I AM” which is the name that YHWH told Moses to tell Israel. The Jews knew what He was saying so that wanted to stone Him. Jesus made it clear that unless you believed that He was God you would die in your sins. This is because God is the One who Justifies man from his unrighteousness. But Justice had to be carried out on our behalf. So the Son was crushed by the Father, and He bore our iniquities, and suffered death.

Just simply believing that God is One is no golden ticket for Jews or Muslims for that matter. James the Brother of Jesus and former non Christian, Jew said in James 2:19 “You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder!”

Justine, all I am saying is having a different concept about a person or thing dose not mean two different persons or two different things. The Jews in the time of Jesus believe that God was one person and not three person. Jesus did not believe that Christians and Jews had a different God for he said “we [Jews] know what we worship” applying that Christians and Jews worship the same God even if they had a different concept of One or even if one worship him truth and spirit and the other did not. My point is only that having a different CONCEPT of God dose not mean both parties believe in two different gods.

As for believing in Jesus as the son of God.
In the years after Jesus was taken up to God, the early church spread quickly in the Greek-speaking (i.e. non-Jewish) world.

When we examine the term “son of God” in its original ‘context of meaning’ we make an interesting discovery. In Hebrew or Aramaic “son of God” is always used figuratively as a metaphor for a child of God, whereas in Greek addressed to Gentile Christians, brought up in a religious culture filled with gods, sons of gods and demigods, the NT expression tended to be understood literally as ‘Son of God’ (with a capital letter): in other words as someone possessing the same nature as God.
Later generations of Gentile (non-Jewish) Christians would completely alter the meaning of the term son of God.

Yes but in John 3:16, Jesus refers to Himself as the “Only Begotten Son” . Who was miraculous Conceived by the Holy Spirit. The word monogenés makes a strong distinction between Only Begotten Son of God, and son of God as referring to others. So this objection fails

( RazorsKiss also followed up on my comment right here and I will put what he said in bold italics)

“Justin: in fact, Dr. White makes a strong case that it should be understood as the “unique Son”, in which case the objection falls even more strongly. ~RK”

(From here I continue on in Isaiah)

Here is what Isaiah has to say about Him “For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given;
and the government shall be upon his shoulder,
and his name shall be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
…Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6

“Isiah 9:6 is not a prophecy examine the tenses closely, “For unto us a child IS born unto us, a son IS given:” It doesn’t say “a child WILL be born” or “a child WILL be given”. In other words it refers to a child in Isiah’s day not to a Messiah who is yet to be born.

Also if you examine the titles of this child none of them were given to Jesus during his lifetime. For eg; ‘Prince of Peace” ‘Everlasting Father’. Jesus said he came not to bring peace upon earth (Mt 10:34) and he said he is not the Father (Mt 23:9)

Furthermore, the government was never upon Jesus’ shoulders nor did Jesus ever reign on David’s throne. If you say that in his second coming he will fulfill all of this. Then he still doesn’t fulfill this passage because we have to wait and see if he comes back. Thus, you cannot quote something that he hasn’t fulfilled and then expect us to believe in it.”

The passage is not saying that Jesus is the eternal Father, but that he has the characteristics of God. In other words, Jesus has all the attributes of God, including eternality. In the ancient Jewish culture, these names had meanings behind them. So, when Isaiah is speaking of the name of the coming Messiah and says his name will be Mighty God, Eternal Father, etc., it is telling us about the characteristics of the Messiah to come in a prophetic manner.

The text speaks of a name, yet has four things revealed in the name. Again, this shows us that it is the characteristics of the then-coming Messiah. The fact that the Messiah would be divine is verified in Heb. 1:3, when it says, “And He [Jesus] is the radiance of His [God] glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power…” This also explains why Jesus said, “…He who has seen Me has seen the Father,” (John 14:9). It was because Jesus so precisely represented God the Father as His prophesied name reveals.

The Muslim would not be able to deal with this text in any meaningful matter, as the Muslim presupposes that God is not a Trinity and The Son did not take on human flesh. Yet many Old Testament text speak of His coming. The Muslim who accepts the Quran has to deal with the NT text that speak of Jesus deity as well as the OT text that speak of the coming Messiah’s deity. But cannot meaningfully explain them due to their errant presuppositions about Christianity as revealed in the Old and New Testaments and ultimately in Christ

The Isiah 9:6 says he will be called by these titles not that he will have the characteristic of these titles. Jesus was clearly not called the eternal father by anyone and he even said in Matthew 23:9 do not call anyone “your father” for you have only one Father and he is in heaven.

Jesus also did not have the characteristics of the Father for in Mark 13:32 he said of that day and hour no one knows, including himself, except the Father alone. Jesus therefore did not have the characteristics of the Father of knowledge of the final hour.

The word translated “God” in Isaiah 9:6 can be used of powerful earthly rulers is Ezekiel 31:11, referring to the Babylonian king. The Trinitarian bias of most translators can be clearly seen by comparing Isaiah 9:6 (el = “God”) with Ezekiel 31:11 (el = “ruler”). If calling the Messiah el made him God, then the Babylonian king would be God also. Isaiah is speaking of God’s Messiah and calling him a mighty ruler, which of course he will be.

Even if you don’t accept this interpretation of Isiah my other point still remains unanswered, which was that this passage is not prophecy about Jesus but refers to a child who was born during the lifetime of Isiah. Check the tenses “a child IS born, a child IS given” (present tense) If it was a prophesy it would have said in the future tense “a child will be born, and will be given”.

“In John 14:9 Jesus is quoted as saying: “Whoever has seen me has seen the Father.” This is often misunderstood to mean that Jesus is God. But Jesus clearly said that no one has seen God at any time (John 5:37). Those who say that Jesus is God, are disagreeing with what Jesus himself said. If Jesus was God why would he say to the people looking at him that they never saw God? And why would the author of the 1st Letter of John in the Bible, writing some seventy years after Jesus was taken up, say that no one had ever seen God (1John 4:12) although he knew that multitudes had already seen Jesus? The meaning of John 14:9 is not that Jesus is God, but that by knowing Jesus, one gets to know God, since Jesus teaches about God. This meaning is confirmed by John 1:18 where the writer says that no one had ever seen God, but Jesus had made God known to the people. In the 17th Chapter of the same Gospel, Jesus declared that eternal life means knowing that the Father whom Jesus worshipped is the only true God and that Jesus is the Messiah who was sent by God.”

a) Nope, they meant He would have the Characteristics. You are sidestepping my argumentation and just repeating yours. Jesus was the image of the invisible God as indicated in Col 1:18 and Hebrews 1 and 2. Please read the NT as a whole

b) Muslims enjoy bringing this text up (Mark 12:32) but they don’t take into account that when Jesus humbled Himself and was born into human flesh, He had to grow in wisdom and stature as indicated by Luke 2:52. This isn’t to say that He wasn’t divine, just that in His humanity, He only knew what He learned from the Father. But He indeed knew before His humility, and and after His glorification to the right hand of God.

(from here I deal with his objections to the prophecy of Isaiah)

1) No one denies this is referring to the coming Messiah.

2) Your objection that it is instead talking about rulers and the Babylonian king falls apart this way, El in Isaiah is always in reference to Yahweh, and it isn’t used in any other way.

3) Lets follow Isaiah’s thinking in the next chapter,

“In that day the remnant of Israel and the survivors of the house of Jacob will no more lean on him who struck them, but will lean on the LORD, the Holy One of Israel, in truth. A remnant will return, the remnant of Jacob, to the mighty God.” (Isaiah 10:20-21)

We can see here that he is indubitably making reference to YHWH.

Just as Isaiah says in 7:14 “Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”

He was indeed God with us. Isaiah 9:6 is making strict reference to Jesus and not any other.

(I move on to his third objection to Isaiah in his essay of doom)

1) How would that be a prophecy if it had already happened?

2) You are starting to get desperate and make up arguments to shove into the text, this is called eisegesis. You are doing this because you have presuppositions that don’t run smoothly with the text we are discussing, as I pointed out earlier. Let Isaiah define his own terms please. Inconsistency is a sign of a failed argument.

(From here I answer his objections to John)

1) First of all Jesus was very clear that No one has seen The Father except the Son as indicated in( John 1:18, 6:46)
“No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father’s side, he has made him known. ” (John 1:18)
“not that anyone has seen the Father except he who is from God; he has seen the Father.” (John 6:46)

2) As Jesus indicated earlier in John 6:38 “For I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will but the will of him who sent me.”

Jesus came down from heaven, HE made God known because He is the only One who has seen God.

A) The Muslim disagrees with Jesus, not the Christian. For the Muslim doesn’t read John as a whole yet shoves his interpretation of the Quran back into the Old and NT.

You also said this
“The meaning of John 14:9 is not that Jesus is God, but that by knowing Jesus, one gets to know God, since Jesus teaches about God. This meaning is confirmed by John 1:18 where the writer says that no one had ever seen God, but Jesus had made God known to the people.”

So as you can see, from 1:18 If you would actually READ it.

That “God makes God known”. Jesus was the Son of God, and knows God the Father truly, and is the only One who can make Him known.

John 17:5 says “And now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had with you before the world existed”.

A human prophet could not say “glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had with you before the world began”. This would be considered blasphemy. So Jesus wasn’t *just* a prophet. He is God. He distinguished Himself from the Father, because He is the Son. They are two different persons, that share in the same being and glory and power as this text also indicates.

“How do you jump from, he will be called, to, he will have the characteristics?:

Because the apostles made those distinction in texts you obviously keep ignoring. Rather you are hung up on choice words instead of letting Isaiah be Isaiah in  describing the coming Messiah.

“But even if we go by your reading then clearly Jesus dose not have all the characteristics of the everlasting Father. According to Mark 13:32 Jesus did not know the final hour but this is one of the characteristics of God the Father. Your reply to this was to explain why Jesus wasn’t like the Father because he was both man and God at the same time. But the point still remains Jesus did not have the characteristics of the Father and yet this child mention in Isiah was to have the characteristics of God the Father base on your reading of the Isiah passage. “

Why do you keep ignoring what I write? I specifically said:

1) Jesus in His humiliation did not know when the last day would be. It doesn’t therefore follow that He isn’t God as you keep asserting over and over

2) Jesus in His humiliation had to grow in wisdom and stature, But He was still in perfect communion with His Father, so He knew what The Father told Him, and could see into the hearts of man.

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 was not any thing made that was made.” (John 1:1-3)

God the Son taking on flesh did not change the fact that He is still the Creator of the Universe, and it did not change the fact that He was *everlasting* such as His Father is. That is why he said to the Jews “I Am He”(John 8:24,58; John 13:19) This indicates His eternality. Just as the Father says “I Am”

“You are my witnesses, declares the LORD,and my servant whom I have chosen,that you may know and believe me
and understand that I Am He.” (Isaiah 43:10)

“I am telling you this now, before it takes place, that when it does take place you may believe that *I Am He*. Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever receives the one I send receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me. ” (John 13:19-20)

Jesus intentionally made this parallel. Either He is God or a Blasphemer. But He isn’t simply *just* a prophet, this is an error.

“Although the prophecy in Isiah 7:14 is taken, in Matthew 1:23 to refer indirectly to Jesus, the prophecy actually refers directly to a child born during the lifetime of the prophet Isaiah. That child was called “Immanuel”, meaning “God is with us,” and he was God’s sign given to King Ahaz that God will help King Ahaz and his people. God’s promise to King Ahaz, in the 7th chapter of Isaiah, is that before the child is old enough to distinguish right from wrong the enemy kings will be defeated by God’s help. That child was indeed born, and God called him Immanuel (Isaiah 8:8). If King Ahaz had to wait seven hundred years for Jesus to be born before God’s help comes, he and his people would be long dead before God’s help comes. What, then, will be the significance of such a promise? The promise had a timely fulfillment. The prophecy referred not to Jesus who was to be born hundreds of years later, but to a child who was born in the time of King Ahaz.”

Jews constantly make this error, in thinking that just because God made a promise in one man’s life, it must therefore follow that the promise must be fulfilled in the man’s lifetime. If you read the context of the whole passage Ahaz *rejected* God’s sign to him. Isaiah strove to remind Ahaz of the foundation of the Covenant. The Messiah would have to be born; and this was expected by all, because the salvation of the whole nation depended on it. But in saying ” will give you a sign” He was not referring specifically to Ahaz, but to the ones who had been adopted by God, The Covenant keepers, The Elect. There is no evidence whatsoever that this promise was even fulfilled to Ahaz in the first place. This is just an assertion made my Jews and borrowed by Muslims to reject Jesus as Immanuel. Even though in the Quranic texts speak of Jesus as Messiah. How inconsistent.

“A further point to notice is that the child spoken of in Isaiah will at first not be able to differentiate between good and evil. Those who say that Jesus was that child should not turn around and say that Jesus is God, because there has never been (and will never be) a time when God does not know the difference between good and evil.”

The text specifically says ‘He shall eat curds and honey when he knows how to refuse the evil and choose the good.’

Let me remind you of Luke 2:52 which I have already discussed a few times now that Jesus grew in Wisdom in Stature.

John Calvin says in his commentary:
.

” He therefore means understanding and judgment, such as is obtained when the period of childhood is past. Thus we see how far the Son of God condescended on our account, so that he not only was willing to be fed on our food, but also, for a time, to be deprived of understanding, and to endure all our weaknesses. (Hebrews 2:14.) This relates to his human nature, for it cannot apply to his Divinity. Of this state of ignorance, in which Christ was for a time, Luke testifies when he says,

And he grew in wisdom, and in stature,
and in favor with God and with man. (Luke 2:52.)

If Luke had merely said that Christ grew, he might have been supposed to mean with men; but he expressly adds, with God. Christ must therefore have been, for a time, like little children, so that, so far as relates to his human nature, he was deficient in understanding.”

“BTW, inconsistency is not always a sign of a failed argument. A person maybe inconsistent in his behavior but his argument may still be true. “

By what standard?

Justine, which apostles made this distinction in the texts, where is the evidence?

“He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purificati…on for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high,” (Hebrews 1:3)

“He is the image of the invisible God…” (Colossians 1:15)

” I and the Father are one. ” (John 10:30)

“And now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had with you before the world existed. ” (John 17:5)

“By the standard of your God giving intelligence and reason.

I’ve not been able to respond to everything due to time but will do so later on in the day.

Yes but our intelligence and reason was meant to be submissive to God’s revelation. Yet man tries to reason autonomously via worldly reason and start from himself as a standard which is in direct opposition to God.
“no one understands;no one seeks for God.” (Romans 3:11)
“You adulterous people! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.” (James 4:4)

Humanity cannot make intelligible sense out of anything without the Triune God of the scripture. As shown above, you are trying to reason through the scriptures with Quranic presuppositions, instead of presupposing the Triune God of the Bible.

The bible the Christian’s standard of truth :

“All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness,” (2 Timothy 3:16)
“For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” (Hebrews 4:12)

So reasoning apart from it would be setting ourselves against God.

This is the Christian’s standard of consistency. Meaning, that if you are being inconsistent with God’s revelation, you are wrong.

One cannot start from the Quran and reason back to the Bible, in doing so, you are not starting with the Triune God of Scripture. If you don’t start with the Triune God of Scripture you are:

1) reasoning in vein
2) not going to be able to make intelligible sense out of anything especially the Scriptures

Because it is the Son:

” in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.” (Colossians 2:3)
“but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world.” (Hebrews 1:2)

When I ask you which apostles made this distinction that “he shall be called” dose not literally mean he shall be called by these titles but only posses the characteristics of these titles, I meant the text of Isaiah 9:6. To put it …in other words, I want an apostles of Jesus quoting this specific verse and then interpreting it in the way you have done. I think this is only reasonable or otherwise we can quote the Bible and make it mean in anyway we want it to mean.

Matthew designates this verse to Jesus in Matt 1:23. That is all that needed to be done. The scripture I provided explains the “prophetic language” of Isaiah”

You constantly accuse me of not allowing Isaiah to be Isaiah and that I am simply reading my theology back into the text. However, I am the one who is taking the verse in question literally whereas you are the one who is not taking the passage literally by saying that “he shall be called” dose not literally mean he shall be called by these titles. “

So when you take the verse “Literally” instead of as the author Isaiah intended, when it says “and the government shall be upon his shoulder,” should we take this literally as well to mean that all of the governments past, present, and future, are being literally carried on His shoulders, such as if a parent literally carries his child on his shoulders? This is what I mean when you aren’t reading Isaiah properly. I repeat for the last time, Isaiah was writing in “Prophetic Language”. If you wish to keep reading the text in erroneously then by all means, go ahead. But don’t say it hasn’t been explained to you.

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