Examining Lucas’ Blunders Concerning John 1:1

Lucas Bashir Samson wrote an article concerning the deity of Jesus Christ portrayed in John 1:1. Looking at the fact that Lucas has no training in Biblical Greek at all, it somehow sound strange that he started to blast the Bible Scholars (who are specially trained in Biblical Greek) as liars! Well, a quick glance at the article inspired me to join Anthony Rogers in the “Muslim Apologists say the dumbest things” series. I guess this is Lucas edition of the series.

Let us hear from Lucas himself:

It is the behaviour of Trinitarian Christians to unhesitatingly quote John 1:1 to prove Jesus is God. Unfortunately, the Greek texts disprove this claim and the translation of the KJV is in discordance with the Greek texts. The NWT gives the translation as “In the beginning was the word, the word was with God and the word was a god”… This is the correct translation though many do not want the ‘Jesus-Is-God’ illusion they had created for themselves to be destroyed. Before dealing with the texts itself, I would like to firstly use reasoning to annul the claim the word is God.

Response

Running to the Jehovah Witness will not help your case at all. Let us look at the NWT rendering of the Greek text:

“In the beginning was the word, the word was with God and the word was a god”

John 1:1 New World Translation

This is a perversion of the Biblical monotheism! I am very sure that Apostle John will be very furious if he was shown the vision of the Jehovah Witness perversion of the Greek text. After all the OT is very clear:

Fear all of you not, neither be afraid: have not I told you from that time, and have declared it? all of you are even my witnesses. Is there a God beside me? yea, there is no God; I know not any. – Isaiah 44:8

“SEE now that I-I am he And there are no gods together with me.” – Deuteronomy 32:39

After all, Apostle John was very clear when he reported:

And this is life eternal, that they might know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. – John 17:3

And we know that the Son of God has come, and has given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life. – 1 John 5:20

More concerning the Greek of John 1:1 will follow shortly.

Do you even know the interesting aspect? Lucas raised an objection which was the answer to his main article! He said:

For instance, consider that John states that the Word was “with God.” But how can an individual be with someone and at the same time be that person? John 1:1 clearly phrases God as a separate person from the Word (Jesus).

Response

Exactly! Jesus is not the Father but he is in the same nature as God. That is the reason the blessed Apostle made a distinction between the first and second ‘theos’. Before going farther on this issue, let us check the remaining article of Lucas so that we can shed light on this particular objection.

And since Jesus is written and identified in John 1:1 as a separate person from God (not just the Father), then that would positively exclude him as being God! Moreover, as recorded in John 17:3, Jesus makes a clear distinction between himself and his heavenly Father. He calls his Father “the only true God.” And toward the end of his Gospel, John sums up matters by saying: “These have been written down that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ the Son of God.” (John 20:31) Notice that Jesus is called, not God, but the Son of God. This additional information provided in the Gospel of John shows how John 1:1 should be understood.

Response

Just because Jesus is a separate person from the Father does not means that He is not equal in nature to His Father. Lucas is arguing from a Unitarian stance which is wrong since the Bible teaches that Yahweh is a multi-personal Deity not a despotic monad like Allah.

Second, John 17:3 does not refute the deity of Christ since Jesus later went on in verse 5 to ask the Father to bring Him back into the glory they had shared before the world began. Yahweh in the OT does not share His Glory with another and reading Jesus claims in its context proved that Jesus is not ANOTHER God apart from the Father. Hence, He decided to establish the True Deity of the Father and later went on to include Himself in His Father’s Deity.

Third, the overall thesis of John’s Gospel, Epistles and Apocalypse is very clear that Jesus is God (not God the Father). The term “Son of God” inferred that Christ is distinct from God (The Father). However, the Greek word “Theos” when used for Christ is used to prove that Jesus is of the same substance and nature as God (The Father).

For you to capture my explanation clearly, look at these two statements:

  1. Eve is Adam
  2. Eve is not Adam

Which of the two is correct? Actually both are correct.

So God created man (adam) in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. – Genesis 1:27

Again, look at this verse:

And the LORD said, I will destroy man (adam) whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repents me that I have made them. – Genesis 6:7

God said that He will destroy man. Does that mean that women are exception? No!

Look at another verse:

Whoso sheds man’s blood, by man (adam) shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man (adam). – Genesis 9:6

No one will say that God approved the killing of women!

Another verse:

And the LORD smelled a sweet savour; and the LORD said in his heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man’s sake; for the imagination of man’s (adam) heart is evil from his youth; neither will I again strike any more every thing living, as I have done.

And he humbled you, and suffered you to hunger, and fed you with manna, which you knew not, neither did your fathers know; that he might make you know that man (adam) does not live by bread only, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of the LORD does man live. – Deuteronomy 8:3

Those verses are enough. We see that the word ‘man (adam)’ can either refer to men of the male gender or can also refer to both male and female gender. So, statement 1 is correct. We can say that Eve is Adam. The word Adam here is qualitative.

Now, statement 2 is also correct since Eve is not her husband Adam neither is she of the male gender. The Adam in statement 2 is not qualitative otherwise it is wrong.

With the knowledge of this important point in mind, we can proceed with the examination of Lucas article.

Jesus, the Word, is “a god” in the sense that he has a high position but is not the same as Almighty God. DEALING WITH THE TEXTS… In the King James Version, this Scripture reads: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God [Greek, ton the·on ], and the Word was God [ the·os ].” This verse contains two forms of the Greek noun the·os (god). The first is preceded by ton (the), a form of the Greek definite article, and in this case the word the·on refers to Almighty God. In the second instance, however, the·os has no definite article. Sidwell Mrhabuli Mahlangu after trying fruitlessly to explain from the Greek text sent me a link to read from the Greek text.

Now, to translate in accordance with the Greek texts, we would have…. “In the beginning was the word [LOGOS], and the word was with[pros] GOD (TON THEON] and god [theos] was the word”. It is the KJV and other translators who are trying to make Jesus part of the trinity, mischievously translated TON THEON and THEOS to God whereas TON THEON stands for Almighty God while THEOS for a lesser god.

Response

But before we start dealing with the text, let me point out something from Lucas statement. Lucas said:

… whereas TON THEON stands for Almighty God while THEOS for a lesser god.

This is entirely rubbish and nonsense! “TON THEON” is the accusative form of “HO THEOS”. THEON and THEOS means the same thing but are different forms depending on how they appear in sentences. TON THEOS is in the accusative case while HO THEOS is in the nominative case.

Using Lucas Bashir reasoning that HO THEOS refers to a lesser god will mean that the Father is also a lesser god (God forbid!). So passages like Matt. 3:9; 6:30; 15:4 etc. means the Father is a lesser god! I expect better from someone who is blasting the expert Greek scholars as liars. Let’s take a look at the Greek text of Matthew 3:9,

“and do not suppose that you can say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham for our father’; for I say to you that from these stones God is able to raise up children to Abraham.”

kai mē doxēte legein en heautois Patera ekhomen ton Abraam legō gar humin hoti dunatai HO THEOS ek tōn lithōn toutōn egeirai tekna tō Abraam

Or take a look at this Matthew 6:30,

“But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today exists, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, won’t he much more clothe you, you of little faith?”

ei de ton khorton tou agrou sēmeron onta kai aurion eis klibanon ballomenon HO THEOS houtōs amphiennusin ou pollō mallon humas oligopistoi

The examples presented above are enough to put to rest the ridiculous teaching of Lucas that “Theos” and “Ton Theon” are different. Our first time in Professor Lucas’ Greek class is obviously a miserable one.

Now, let us look at the Greek transliteration of John 1:1 very well:

EN ARCHÊ ÊN hO LOGOS, KAI hO LOGOS ÊN PROS TON THEON, KAI THEOS ÊN hO LOGOS.

The shift from TON THEON to THEOS is a shift in nuance. Apostle John was avoiding the ancient heresy of Modalism. Look at what Lucas said previously:

For instance, consider that John states that the Word was “with God.” But how can an individual be with someone and at the same time be that person? John 1:1 clearly phrases God as a separate person from the Word (Jesus).

By now, it should be very obvious why Apostle John did not use a definite article for latter THEOS. If Apostle John had used it, then we would have something like this:

“In the beginning was the Word, the Word was with God and the Word was THE God” John 1:1

The Word was with who? The God (ton theon) here refers to the Father. John adding a definite article to the latter theos will mean that the Word was the Father. But Apostle John did not do that, he deliberately omitted the definite article in order to make the THEOS a qualitative one.

To put it better, I will quote a scholar:

“So, John is telling us something about the LOGOS – that He is THEOS.  The $64,000 question, then, is what does John mean by this?  Since THEOS is anarthrous, does he mean that the Word was “a god” (indefinite)?  Or does he mean that the Word is God (definite)?  Or does he mean that the Word has all the qualities and attributes of God (qualitative)?  To answer this essential question, we will need to review how several prominent grammarians have viewed this issue.” [1]

Now, recall my earlier explanation about Eve and Adam. Now look at these statements:

“After Yahweh created everything and placed Adam in the garden, Eve was with Adam and Eve was Adam” [1a]

Compare with:

“After Yahweh created everything and placed Adam in the garden, Eve was with Adam and Eve was THE Adam” [1b]

Can you see the difference? 1a is different from 1b. The word “Adam” is qualitative in 1a while it is definite in 1b. A serious blow to the illegal and indiscriminate use of simple arithmetic in logistics is shown here:

Eve is Adam [Eve = Adam] but Adam is not Eve [Adam ≠ Eve]. How come? While the word ‘Adam’ can also refer to women but nowhere does the word ‘woman’ refers to men!

Eve and Adam is not convertible like

Eve = wife of Adam

Wife of Adam = Eve

Someone will ask “hey guy! What are you trying to say?” I am trying to prove that Jesus = God is not 100% convertible!

Jesus = God but God ≠ Jesus

Just as

Eve = Adam but Adam ≠ Eve

And

Jesus = Son of God and Son of God = Jesus

Just as

Eve = Adam’s wife and Adam’s wife = Eve

Moreover, the NWT failed to apply Colwell’s rule. Let us hear this from a trained Biblical scholar:

“In 1933, E.C. Colwell published his now famous study of the use of the article with PNs occurring both before and after the verb.  Colwell began by identifying a number of PNs that he believed were definite by virtue of the context.  He then performed a statistical analysis of their occurrence – either before or after the verb – and with the article or without.  He found that 87% of definite PNs before the verb occurred without the article.  He “tentatively” offers a rule that, in part, stipulates: “Definite predicate nouns which precede the verb usually lack the article” (Colwell, p. 20).  Colwell reasons:

But it is in the realm of translation and interpretation that the data presented here have their most valuable application.  They show that a predicate nominative which precedes the verb cannot be translated as an indefinite or a “qualitative” noun solely because of the absence of the article; if the context suggests that the predicate is definite, it should be translated as a definite noun in spite of the absence of the article (IBID, p. 20).

Thus, Colwell’s study indicates that THEOS in John 1:1c should not be translated as an indefinite noun solely on the basis of the absence of the article.  Colwell, like most grammarians prior to Harner (see below), considered “qualitative” nouns to be more or less equivalent to indefinite nouns.  Recall, though, that Colwell studied only nouns that he had identified as definite based on the context – he did not study all nouns in the New Testament.  Thus, some scholars have questioned Colwell’s further application of his rule:

Loosely speaking, this study may be said to have increased the definiteness of a predicate noun before the verb without the article, and to have decreased the definiteness of a predicate noun after the verb without the article.

… The absence of the article does not make the predicate indefinite or qualitative when it precedes the verb; it is indefinite in this position only when the context demands it.  The context makes no such demand in the Gospel of John, for this statement cannot be regarded as strange in the prologue of the gospel which reaches its climax in the confession of Thomas (IBID, p. 21).” [2]

Lars Wilhelmsson said:

“In the phrase, “God was the Word,” the predicate nominative (God) comes before the verb (was) allowing for (God) to be definite. “Was” is an intransitive verb. Intransitives take no objects but instead predicate nominatives which refer back to the subject (in this case logos or “Word”). There are numerous examples (282 times) where definite predicate nouns precede the verb without an article (Mt 5:9; Lk 1:35,78; 2:40; Jn 1:6, 12-13,18; 3:2, 21; 8:54; 9:33; Ro 1:7, 17-18; 1 Co 15:10; 2 Co 5:19; Php 2:11; Titus 1:1; etc.).

The shift from ton theon (the accusative form of ho theos) to the anarthrous theos in John 1:1 only indicates a shift in nuance, not a shift of substance. This means that logos (the Word) is called “God” in the fullest sense even though logos should not be identified with the person of God the Father. Such a shift from ho theos (the God) to theos (God) in a short space in Scripture normally does not indicate a major change of meaning. This is evident by the following examples:

“[Jesus] knowing . . . that He came from God [apo theou] and was returning to God [pros ton theon] . . .” (Jn 13:3).

“. . . although they knew God [ton theon], they did not glorify Him as God [theon] . . .” (Ro 1:21)

“. . . how you turned to God [pros ton theon] from idols to serve the living and true God [theon]” (1 Th 1:9)

“. . . how much more will the blood of Christ, who through an everlasting spirit offered Himself without blemish to God [to theo], cleanse our consciences from dead works that we may render sacred service to [the] living God [theo]?”

“If anyone speaks, [let him speak] as it were [the] sacred pronouncements of God [theou]; if anyone ministers, [let him minister] as dependent on the strength which God [ho theos] supplies; so that in all things God [ho theos] may be glorified through Jesus Christ . . .” (1 Peter 4:11-12).

These examples, then, give evidence that a shift from ho theos to theos does not indicate a change in the meaning of the word.

Jehovah’s Witnesses translators who render John 1:1 to read “a god” translate the exact same phrase as “God” in 94 percent of the other 281 instances. To be consistent, these should say “a god.” THIS THEY FAIL TO DO IN NUMEROUS PASSAGES (Mt 5:9; 6:24; Lk 1:35, 78; Jn 1:6,12-13,18; Ro 1:7,17). This construction occurs 20 times in the gospel of John alone. Should John 1:18, then, be translated, “No one has seen a god at any time”? If the verse were to be translated “a god” then we would be faced with polytheism which is totally foreign to anything of the Christian faith.

If Jesus is “a god,” then there must be others. Calling Jesus “a god” among other gods would have been as unacceptable to the first-century reader as it is to the 20th century theist.

John’s contemporaries were thoroughly schooled in monotheism, and any departure from that well-established doctrine would have been rejected outright.

Because “God” is definite in this instance in John 1:1, the God who was with the Word is the God who is the Word.”[3]

With that in mind, we can now start bringing expert Biblical scholars into this discussion:

B.F. Westcott, considered by most to be the textual scholar in the world, and whose Greek text the Jehovah’s Witnesses Kingdom Interlinear use, forcefully contradicts the interpretation and thus translation of John 1:1 by the Watchtower Society:

“The predicate (God) stands emphatically first, as in 4:24. It is necessarily without the article . . . No idea of inferiority of nature is suggested by the form of expression, which simply affirms the true Deity of the Word . . . in the third clause ‘the Word’ is declared to be ‘God’ and so included in the unity of the Godhead.” [4]

Bruce Metzger, former professor of New Testament language and literature at Princeton Theological Seminary and author of The Text of the New Testament and many other scholarly works, observes,

“The Jehovah’s Witnesses have incorporated in their translation of the New Testament several quite erroneous renderings of the Greek. . . . Far more pernicious in this same verse is the rendering, ‘and the Word was a god,’ with the following footnotes:

‘A god,’ in contrast with ‘the God.’ It must be stated quite frankly that, if the Jehovah’s Witnesses take this translation seriously, they are polytheists. In view of the additional light which is available during this age of Grace, such a representation is even more reprehensible than were the heathenish, polytheistic errors into which ancient Israel was so prone to fall. As a matter of solid fact, however, such a rendering is a frightful mistranslation. It overlooks entirely an established rule of Greek Grammar which necessitates the rendering, “… and the Word was God” [5]

Robert Countess wrote his Ph.D. dissertation in Greek on the New World Translation. He concluded:

“. . . has been sharply unsuccessful in keeping doctrinal considerations from influencing the actual translation. . . . It must be viewed as a radically biased piece of work. At some points it is actually dishonest. At others it is neither modern nor scholarly. And interwoven throughout its fabric is inconsistent application of its own principles enunciated in the Foreword and Appendix.” [6]

British scholar H. H. Rowley asserts,

“From beginning to end this volume is a shining example of how the Bible should not be translated. . . it is an insult to the Word of God.” [7]

Julius Mantey, co-author with H. E. Dana of, A Manual Grammar of the Greek New Testament, calls the Watchtower translation of John 1:1:

“I have never read any New Testament so badly translated as The Kingdom Interlinear Translation of The Greek Scriptures… It is a distortion of the New Testament. The translators used what J.B. Rotherham had translated in 1893, in modern speech, and changed the readings in scores of passages to state what Jehovah’ Witnesses believe and teach. That is a distortion not a translation” [8]

F.F. Bruce, who before his death was Rylands Professor of Biblical Criticism and Exegesis in the University of Manchester, England, stated:

“Much is made by Arian amateur grammarians of the omission of the definite article with ‘God’ in the phrase ‘And the Word was God’. Such an omission is common with nouns in a predicate construction. ‘A god’ would be totally indefensible.”

Eugene Nida, head of the Translation Department of the American Bible Society Translators of the GOOD NEWS BIBLE, makes the serious accusation:

“With regard to John 1:1 there is, of course, a complication simply because the New World Translation was apparently done by persons who did not take seriously the syntax of the Greek.” [9]

William Barclay, who before his death was professor of divinity and Biblical Criticism at Glasgow University in Scotland, stated:

“The deliberate distortion of truth by this sect is seen in their New Testament translations. John 1:1 is translated: ‘. . . the Word was a god,’ a translation which is grammatically impossible. It is abundantly clear that a sect which can translate the New Testament like that is intellectually dishonest.” [10]

Harry Sturz, Chairman of the Language Department and professor of Greek at Biola University in California, claims:

“Therefore, the NWT rendering: ‘the Word was a god’ is not a ‘literal’ but an ungrammatical and tendential translation. A literal translation in English can be nothing other than: ‘the Word was God.” [11]

With the foregoing in perspective, let us examine how other translations have translated John 1:1:

New International Version
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

New Living Translation
In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God.

English Standard Version
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Berean Study Bible
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Berean Literal Bible
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

New American Standard Bible 
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

King James Bible
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

International Standard Version
In the beginning, the Word existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God.

NET Bible
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was fully God.

New Heart English Bible
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
In the origin The Word had been existing and That Word had been existing with God and That Word was himself God.

GOD’S WORD® Translation
In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God.

New American Standard 1977 
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Jubilee Bible 2000
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with the God, and the Word was God.

King James 2000 Bible
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

American King James Version
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

American Standard Version
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Douay-Rheims Bible
IN the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Darby Bible Translation
In [the] beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

English Revised Version
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Webster’s Bible Translation
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Weymouth New Testament
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

World English Bible
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Young’s Literal Translation
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God;

And these translations tried to explain John 1:1 very well:

“Before the world was created, the Word already existed; he was with God, and he was the same as God.” TEV

“In the beginning was the one who is called the Word. The Word was with God and was truly God.” CEV

By now, the issue of John 1:1 being mistranslated by Trinitarians has been settled.

Here is where we come to the concluding part of the rebuttal series.

Lucas said:

Bible verses in the Greek language that have a construction similar to that of John 1:1 use the expression “a god.” For example, when referring to Herod Agrippa I, the crowds shouted: ‘It is a god speaking’. And when Paul survived a bite by a poisonous snake, the people said: “He is a god.” (Acts 12:22; 28:3-6)

Response

As usual, Lucas did not give us the complete picture of the story. What happened to the Herod? He was struck down by an angel. The disapproval of God is obviously demonstrated here.

And the people gave a shout, saying, It is the voice of a god, and not of a man.
And immediately the angel of the Lord stroke him, because he gave not God the glory: and he was eaten of worms, and gave up the spirit. Acts 12:22-23

Second, the people who called Paul a god were the pagan polytheists and Paul did not approve that he should be called a god. This is brought out clearly in this scene:

At Lystra a certain man sat, impotent in his feet, a cripple from his mother’s womb, who never had walked.

He was listening to Paul speaking, who, fastening eyes on him, and seeing that he had faith to be made whole,

said with a loud voice, “Stand upright on your feet!” He leaped up and walked.

When the multitude saw what Paul had done, they lifted up their voice, saying in the language of Lycaonia, “The gods have come down to us in the likeness of men!”

They called Barnabas “Jupiter”, and Paul “Mercury”, because he was the chief speaker.

The priest of Jupiter, whose temple was in front of their city, brought oxen and garlands to the gates, and would have made a sacrifice along with the multitudes.

But when the apostles, Barnabas and Paul, heard of it, they tore their clothes, and sprang into the multitude, crying out,

Men, why are you doing these things? We also are men of like passions with you, and bring you good news, that you should turn from these vain things to the living God, who made the sky and the earth and the sea, and all that is in them;

who in the generations gone by allowed all the nations to walk in their own ways.

Yet he didn’t leave himself without witness, in that he did good and gave you rains from the sky and fruitful seasons, filling our hearts with food and gladness.”

Even saying these things, they hardly stopped the multitudes from making a sacrifice to them. – Acts 14:8-18

Then Lucas went on to write:

It is in harmony with both Greek grammar and Bible teaching to speak of the Word as, not God, but “a god.”—John 1:1. Study the two pics carefully, I placed John 1:1 and 2 Corinthians 4:4 side by side with the Greek texts and translation making the capital letter “G” fraud vivid. 2 Corinthians 4:4 referred to Satan as the god [theos] of this world…. Now, if John 1:1 says the word was THEOS and 2Corinthians says the devil is the THEOS of this world; Why was THEOS translated as ‘G’od in John 1 :1 and as ‘god’ in 2Corinthians 4:4???

Response

Harmony with what? Your own Greek Grammar? Or the Biblical Greek Grammar? I have already proven that the Greek Grammar does not support the NWT & co. distortion of Greek text of John 1:1.

Second, as for 2 Corinthians 4:4, it is disputed whether the ‘theos’ here refers to Satan or God. Please the readers can consult Sam Shamoun’s exegesis of the text here.

The idea of “Theos” meaning a lesser god while “Ton Theon” meaning “Almighty God” is a foreign concept in Greek Grammar and something every Greek student will dismiss with a wild laughter. It is in English language that we differentiate between ‘God’ and ‘god’ by using the uppercase “G” in the former. This does not apply in Greek Grammar (or in Hebrew for that matter). It is the context that determines whether the “theos” and its other forms and cases should be translated as “god” as in pagan deities  or as “God” as in the only true Almighty God.

The context of the prologue of John is very clear that Jesus is God in the sense that His Father is God.

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

 The same was in the beginning with God.

All things were made through him. Without him was not anything made that has been made.

In him was life, and the life was the light of men.

The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness hasn’t overcome a it.

There came a man, sent from God, whose name was John.

The same came as a witness, that he might testify about the light, that all might believe through him.

He was not the light, but was sent that he might testify about the light.

The true light that enlightens everyone was coming into the world.

He was in the world, and the world was made through him, and the world didn’t recognize him.

He came to his own, and those who were his own didn’t receive him.

But as many as received him, to them he gave the right to become God’s children, to those who believe in his name:

who were born not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.

The Word became flesh, and lived among us. We saw his glory, such glory as of the one and only Son of the Father, full of grace and truth.

John testified about him. He cried out, saying, “This was he of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me has surpassed me, for he was before me.’”
From his fullness we all received grace upon grace.

For the law was given through Moses. Grace and truth were realized through Jesus Christ.

No one has seen God at any time. The one and only Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, he has declared him. – John 1:1-18

That the Word was in the beginning with God and that through Him were ALL things made, for Apostle John, demonstrates that this is His own interpretation (as enabled by the Holy Spirit) of Genesis 1. In creation account in Genesis, we have God speaking out His Word and all things coming into existence. The inspired Psalmist inspired by this creation account remarked,

By the WORD OF THE LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of His mouth. (Psalm 33:6 JPS)

In fact, the Second Temple Jews believed that the Memra (Word) of Yahweh is the visible representation of Yahweh and that He possesses the full divine attributes of Yahweh. This scholar remarked:

“In contrast, after his discovery of the first complete manuscript of the Palestinian Targum, and slightly before McNamara, Alejandro Diez Macho had argued for the close connection of the Memra so widely occurring in this text with the Logos of the Fourth Gospel. In all of the Palestinian Aramaic translations of the Bible, the term Memra-as a translation of various terms which in the Hebrew either simply mean God or are names of God-is legion and theologically highly significant, because these usages parallel nearly exactly the functions of the Logos, the deuteros theos in Logos theology.” [12]

Then the Jewish Scholar Daniel Boyarin went on to cite examples where the actions of Yahweh was attributed to His Memra (Word)

“We find the Memra working as the Logos works in the following ways:

CREATING: Gen 1:3: “And the Memra of H’ said Let there be light and there was Light by his Memra.” In all of the following verses, it is the Memra that performs all of the creative actions.

SPEAKING TO HUMANS: Gen 3:8ff: “And they heard the voice of the Memra of H’…. And the Memra of H’ called out to the Man.”

REVEALING HIMSELF: Gen 18:1: “And was revealed to him the Memra of H’.”

PUNISHING THE WICKED: Gen 19:24 “And the Memra of H’ rained down on Sodom and Gomorrah.

SAVING: Exod 17:21: “And the Memra of H’ was leading them during the day in

a pillar of cloud.”

REDEEMING: Deut 32:39: “When the Memra of H’ shall be revealed to redeem

his people.” [13]

Time would not allow us to delve fully into the testimony of the Second Temple Judaism to the theology of the Memra of Yahweh and how it shapes the Christology of the early church.

The Hebrew scriptures is very clear that there is no god beside Yahweh. If we are to abide by the Jehovah Witness translation of John, this will be a violation of Deuteronomy 32:39 which says:

SEE now that I-I am he And there are no gods together with me. – Deut 32:39

The Septuagint puts this verse in the following manner:

“idete idete oti egō eimi kai OUK ESTIN THEOS plēn emou egō apoktenō kai zēn poiēsō pataxō kagō iasomai kai ouk estin OS EXELEITAI EK TŌN KHEIRŌN MOU

“Behold, behold that I am [he], and there is no god beside me (ouk estin theos): I kill, and I will make to live: I will smite, and I will heal; and there is none who shall deliver out of my hands (ouk estin os exeleitai ek ton kheiron mou).”

Something which the Lord Jesus claims to be able to do in conjunction with His Father:

“kagō didōmi autois zōēn aiōnion kai ou mē apolōntai eis ton aiōna KAI OUKH HARPASEI TIS AUTA EK TĒS KHEIROS mou ho patēr mou ho dedōken moi pantōn meizon estin KAI OUDEIS DUNATAI HARPAZEIN EK TĒS KHEIROS TOU PATROS” John 10:28-29

AND I GIVE THEM EVERLASTING LIFE, and they will by no means ever be destroyed, and no one will snatch them out of my hand (kai oukh aptasei tis auta ek tes kheiros mou). What my Father has given me is greater than all other things, and no one can snatch them out of the hand of the Father (kai oudeis dunatai aptazein ek tes kheiros tou patros)” John 10:28-29

There are many passages throughout the written works of John that prove that Jesus is God in the same sense His Father was.

Hence, this provides evidence that Jesus cannot be just “a god,” but is the true God who is distinct from both the Father and the Holy Spirit.

After beating his chest in boast, Lucas feels so proud of his intellectualism that he has the temerity to say:

Next time a Christian tells you John 1:1 says Jesus is God, slap the Christian’s face intellectually with this…

Response

After having the basic message of this article of mine, a Muslim came to you and slap you with Lucas “intellectual” article, just ensure you send him back weeping in the laps of his Greek Professor.

Despite the “intellectual” article of Lucas Bashir Samson, the positive testimony of John 1:1 to the deity of our Lord Jesus Christ still stands unshaken.

And now to the Eternal Lord and King of Glory, our Lord Jesus Christ, be the glory and honour and praise, forever and ever, Amen!

In the Risen Lord,

NOTES

  1. SOURCE
  2. ibid.
  3. Lars Wilhelmsson, HERESIES: CULTS AND SECTS. Pg. 161-162
  4. Dr B.F. Westcott (1953), The Gospel According to St. John, Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., Grand Rapids. Pg. 3
  5. Bruce M. Metzger (1953), The Jehovah’s Witnesses and Jesus: A Biblical and Theological Appraisal, pg. 75
  6. Robert Countess (1983), The Jehovah’s Witness New Testament, Phillipsburg, NJ: Presbyterian and Reformed. Pg. 91, 93
  7. H. H. Rowley, as quoted on “Martin and Julius Mantey on The New World Translation” tape
  8. Julius Mantey (1980), Depth Exploration in The New Testament, N.Y.: Vantage Press. Pg. 136-137
  9. Eugene Nida, as quoted in Questions for Jehovah’s Witnesses by William and Joan Cetnar. Pg. 55
  10. Dr William Barclay (1985), THE EXPOSITORY TIMES, November 1985
  11. Dr Harry Sturz (1971), THE BIBLE COLLECTOR, July-December, 1971. Pg. 12
  12. Daniel Boyarin (2001), The Gospel of the Memra: Jewish Binitarianism and the Prologue to John, pp. 15
  13. ibid. pp.15-16