Notes on Jesus and Monotheism

By Ken Allen, D.D.

First, we need to make it clear that the Holy Scriptures, both the Old and New Testament, are the only sufficient rule of faith and practice, and that it is from them that all doctrine should be derived. Anything that is not clearly revealed in the Holy Scriptures is open to misunderstanding and is a matter of individual, or group, interpretation, or is tradition derived from other sources than the Holy Scriptures. Definitions of words and concepts need to be understood as to the meaning they had to the original penmen, and to the original readers, of the Holy Scriptures.

John 1:1ff

Word [Logos] = God's utterance, means (action, power) of interaction, communicating his message [spoken, written, seen, etc.]

Attribute = An inherent characteristic, or, a characteristic that has always been present.

"In the beginning was the Word"....

What does this "beginning" refer to? Not, God, of course, since He has no beginning. So, it must refer to His beginning of creation of anything, not just our solar system, but, the things and beings of the heavenly (spiritual) sphere. Actually, the "Word" was already in existence before the beginning referred to in this verse. This statement simply means that the "Word" was present at the time of this beginning. The "Word" had no beginning because God has always had the means [ability, attribute] of communication.

"and the Word was with God"....

Just as a person's word (means of communication) is "with', or, "an attribute" of that person, so God's Word was "with" or "an attribute" of God.

"and the Word was God [Divine]."....

In human terms, it might be said of a creature, "and the creature was human". This does not mean that all of humanity was in that creature, but, the characteristics (attributes) that make a human being human were present in the creature. There may even be other humans that are more human, greater (e.g. have more human attributes) than this creature, but this creature is still considered human. In the same way that a person's characteristics (attributes) constitute (establish, make up, compose, are the same as) that person, so the "Word" is the same as God as far as it being divine. Not all the essence of God, but complete in all that there is as being divine. We might say of a person, "he is as good as his word", or, "he is his word".

John 1:14
"And the Word became flesh"....

Notice that it says "the Word [God's utterance, means of communication or interacting]", not God the Father, "became flesh". God's means of interaction and communication with mankind became a human being (Jesus), the Son of God, born of a virgin at a certain time and place in the history of mankind. So, did Jesus pre-exist his birth as a human being? No, not as a human being, but, as the "Word", as God's means of interacting and communicating with mankind. Is Jesus the Almighty God? No, not in the sense of being the same person as Almighty God (Who is the Father), but, Jesus is the "express image of His (the Father's) person". In this way, Jesus is the same as His Father, in the same way we would say of a human father and his son, "he is just like, or, the same as his father". "When you see him (the human son), you see his father." They are not the same person, but, the way the son acts, the things he does, are the same things his father does, even though it may not be to the same capacity in all aspects. They are one, in complete union (agreement), in what they do.

Col. 1:19, states "For it pleased the Father that in Him [Jesus] all fullness should dwell".

Col. 2:9, says "For in Him [Jesus] dwells all the fullness of the Godhead [deity] bodily".

Then, look at what Eph. 3:19 says, "to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you [humans, Christians] may be filled with all the fullness of God".

We see it stated that Jesus had "all the fullness" and also, that Christians may be filled with "all the fullness". How can "all the fullness" be in more than one being? The fact is that these Scriptures are talking about the "quality" of what is able to be there, and not "quantity".

Therefore when John says "the Word was God" and "the Word became flesh", this too, has to be referring to "quality" and not to "quantity", otherwise, a Christian would be all of God that there is to the exclusion of all other beings making Christians all there is of God.

Now, in 1 Cor. 8:6, Paul says "But for us there is only one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we for Him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by Him."

Also, in 1 Tim. 2:5 Paul writes, "There is one God [the Father], and one mediator between God [the Father] and men, the Man Christ Jesus".

From the above and other Scripture, we begin to get the impression that there is only one being that is God, the Father, and a different being that is called Jesus, the Christ, the Son of God, and that they are completely different beings, but one in unity of purpose.

Some other Scriptures for consideration of what is stated above are:

Mark 13:32 - [Jesus does not know everything the Father knows] - "But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father."

John 10:29 - "MY FATHER, which gave them me, IS GREATER THAN ALL; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand."

John 14:28 - "Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: FOR MY FATHER IS GREATER THAN I."

John 20:17 - "Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto MY FATHER AND YOUR FATHER; and to MY GOD, AND YOUR GOD."

John 17:3 - [Jesus is speaking to the Father] - "And this is life eternal, that they might know THEE THE ONLY TRUE GOD and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent."

Romans 15:6 - "That ye may with one mind and one mouth glorify GOD, EVEN THE FATHER OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST."

1 Cor. 3:23 - "And ye are Christ's; and CHRIST IS GOD'S."

1 Cor. 11:3 - "But I would have you know that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and THE HEAD OF CHRIST IS GOD."

1 Cor 15:24-28 - "Then cometh the end, when he [Jesus] shall have delivered up the kingdom to GOD; EVEN THE FATHER; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power. For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death. For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him. And when all things shall be subdued unto him, THEN SHALL THE SON ALSO HIMSELF BE SUBJECT UNTO HIM THAT PUT ALL THINGS UNDER HIM, THAT GOD MAY BE ALL IN ALL."

2 Cor 1:3 - Blessed be GOD, EVEN THE FATHER OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort;"

2 Cor 11:31 - "The GOD AND FATHER OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, which is blessed for evermore, knoweth that I lie not."

Eph 1:3 - "Blessed be the GOD AND FATHER OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ;

Eph 1:17 - "that the GOD OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, THE FATHER OF GLORY, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him:"

Eph 4:4-6 - "There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism, ONE GOD AND FATHER OF ALL, WHO IS ABOVE ALL, and through all, and in you all."

1 Thes 3:13 - "to the end he may stablish your hearts unblameable in holiness before GOD, EVEN OUR FATHER, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints."

2 Thes 2:16 - "Now our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and GOD, EVEN OUR FATHER, which hath loved us, and hath given us everlasting consolation and good hope through grace,"

James 3:9 - "Therewith bless we GOD, EVEN THE FATHER; and therewith curse we men which are made after the similitude of God."

1 Pet 1:2-3 - "Elect according to the forknowledge of GOD THE FATHER, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied. Blessed be THE GOD AND FATHER OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,"

2 John 3 - "Grace be with you, mercy, and peace, from GOD THE FATHER, AND FROM THE LORD JESUS CHRIST, THE SON OF THE FATHER, in truth and love."

Do you believe the Holy Scriptures are the only sufficient rule of faith and practice, and that from the Scriptures all doctrine should come? if so, then you have a decision to make. Will you believe the Scriptures, or the traditions of men that read their traditions into the Scriptures instead of reading their doctrines out of the Scriptures?