Listen to Nancy’s answer recorded live on Moody radio, here:
In the first sentence in the Bible, Genesis 1:1, God identifies Himself as the Triune God, God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. The Hebrew name for God is Elohim, a masculine noun that is plural in the definition.
Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.”
Genesis 1:26, “Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.”
We see confirmation in the New Testament of the deity of Jesus in John 1:1-5, confirming that Jesus has always been God. “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. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.”
There was never a question with Jesus that He knew that He was God. As God, He willingly gave up His seat next to God the Father in Heaven and came to earth as our Savior. That did not make Jesus less than God; He took on the form of man and, in essence, became God/man.
Mary knew that she had given birth to the Son of God. The angel of the Lord came to her and said, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”
Jesus also knew as a young boy. When He was 12, He went with His family to Jerusalem to celebrate the Feast of the Passover. When the Feast was over, His family and friends started back to their home, but Jesus stayed behind. When they realized that He was missing, they went back to find Him. “After three days they found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. And all who heard him were amazed at his understanding and his answers. And when his parents saw him, they were astonished. And his mother said to him, “Son, why have you treated us so? Behold, your father and I have been searching for you in great distress.” And he said to them, “Why were you looking for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?” (Luke 2:46-49)
As a man, Jesus claimed to be God to the Jews who, at that point, wanted to kill Him. “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am.” So they picked up stones to throw at him, but Jesus hid himself and went out of the temple” (John 8:58-59).
Jesus claimed that God guided both his words and deeds. This does not make Him less than God. “I tell you the truth, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does. For the Father loves the Son and shows him all he does. Yes, to your amazement he will show him even greater things than these” (John 5:19,20).
“Jesus said. But if I do it, even though you do not believe me, believe the miracles, that you may know and understand that the Father is in me, and I in the Father” (John 10:38).
The apostle John noted, “I have seen and have borne witness that this is the Son of God” (John 1:34).
There is no question that Jesus’ life on earth was different from when He sat at the right hand of God the Father in Heaven. He slept and ate food and was showing us how to love and obey God. He displayed a heart of compassion, love, and sacrifice. None of these things compromised His Godhood.
“Just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve and to give his life a ransom for many” (Matthew 20:28)
From His first breath as an infant to his last breath on the cross, to his ascension into Heaven, Jesus was entirely God. His righteousness and sinlessness made Him the perfect sacrifice needed to pay for the sins of all humanity, past, present, and future. Because of the holiness of God the Father, the sacrifice had to be one without sin. So God, because he so deeply loved all He created, gave up the only one who would qualify as a holy sacrifice to pay the price for humanity’s sin, His Son. Without such a sacrifice, there would be no hope of ever having a personal relationship with God and live forever with Him in Heaven.
“And they said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household” (Acts 16:31).
“Repent therefore, and turn back, that your sins may be blotted out” (Acts 3:19).
“But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God” (John 1:12).