Jehovah’s Witnesses Misrepresent Jesus Christ
By: The John Ankerberg Show
|By: Lorri MacGregor; ©July 2000|
|According to the Jehovah’s Witnesses Jesus is secondary god, created, rather than the Creator, the archangel Michael, who on earth was no more than a “good man.” Lorri MacGregor examines the Scriptures which show these ideas are wrong.|
Jehovah’s Witnesses present Jesus Christ as a secondary “god,” created, not eternal, the Archangel Michael in heaven, and a good man on earth. As discussed in previous articles Jesus Christ is, in fact, Almighty God manifest in the flesh.
Sometimes it is beneficial when dealing with a misled Jehovah’s Witness to use one of their own publications called the Kingdom Interlinear Translation. In the Kingdom Interlinear Translation, English words appear under the Greek on the left side of the page.
“Ho Theos” means “The God” in Greek, and Jehovah’s Witnesses claim this can only be Jehovah God. Refer them to the following Scriptures, and ask them to check them out in their Kingdom Interlinear Translation. In each case Jesus Christ is called “Ho Theos,” “The God.”
- Prophecy called Jesus “The God”—Matthew 1:23.
- The Disciples called Jesus “The God”— John 20:25-28.
- The Father called Jesus “The God”—Hebrews 1:8
We are driven to the conclusion, if we believe Greek grammar, that Jesus is “the God.” He is also called Almighty God (Revelation 1:8), The God (Scriptures above), the True God (1 John 5:20), and finally, the Only God.
1 Timothy 1:16,17 reads, “And yet for this reason I found mercy, in order that in me as the foremost, JESUS CHRIST might demonstrate His perfect patience, as an example for those who would believe in Him for eternal life. Now to the King ETERNAL, immortal, invisible, THE ONLY GOD, be honor and glory forever and ever, Amen” (NAS, emphasis ours).
Yes, Jesus Christ is Eternal (not created, as Jehovah’s Witnesses teach), and He is called “The Only God.” Point out the location of the “Amen” in these scriptures. Jehovah’s Witnesses would like verse 16 to be Jesus, but verse 17 to be Jehovah. Not possible. There were no chapter and verse divisions in the early manuscripts, and the “Amen” closes the thought. Furthermore, the subject is Jesus Christ.
There is only one true God in scripture. He has revealed Himself in the person of the Father, YHWH (mistranslated “Jehovah”), and in the person of the Son, Jesus Christ. He has also revealed Himself in the person of the Holy Spirit, but we are not dealing with that subject at this time, but with the Deity of Jesus Christ.
UNDERSTANDING JESUS’ HUMANITY AS WELL AS HIS DEITY
Jesus is truly God, but He is also truly man. It is the scriptures dealing with His humanity that cause the most distortions in the cult doctrines. Therefore, let’s understand them, and be ready to explain them in context.
John 1:14 says “And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us….”
Yes, the Word who was God came down to this earth—why?—and for how long?
Hebrews 2:9 answers, “But we do see Him who has been made for a little while lower than the angels, namely, Jesus, because of the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that by the grace of God He might taste death for everyone.”
So this humanity, this humility of Jesus was to be “for a little while,” and He would “taste death for everyone.”
JESUS’ HUMANITY EXPLAINED IN PHILIPPIANS
Verses 5 and 6 of Philippians, chapter two, begin regarding the humanity of Jesus: “Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped” (NAS).
The phrase “existed in the form of God” means literally in the Greek, He “never ceased being in the form of God.” Remembering this point, we continue to the phrase “[He] did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped.” The cults love to disregard the first phrase and seize on the second, to try to “prove” Jesus inferior. However, in context, Jesus Christ never ceased being God, but rather than grasping after the equality that was His, He chose a course of humanity and humility. Verses 7 and 8 of Philippians, chapter two continues on, “But emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men, and being found in appearance AS A MAN, he humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross” (NAS, emphasis ours).
AS A MAN, DID JESUS LOSE HIS DEITY?
The answer to the above question is “Never!” Jesus Christ was not just a good man as some cults teach, He was God manifest in the flesh. He did function totally as a man while on earth, but He was always God. Colossians 2:8,9 warns that false teachers would deceive people on this very point, as do the Jehovah’s Witnesses: “See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the elementary principles of the world rather than according to Christ. For in HIM ALL THE FULLNESS OF DEITY DWELLS IN BODILY FORM” (NAS, emphasis ours).
All is all, and full is full, and “all the fullness of Deity” (Godhead, Godship), is dwelling in Christ “IN THE FLESH.”
So in Jesus Christ we see two sides, His Deity and His humanity. Both are necessary to understand in order to present correct teaching on this most important subject. After all, if you have the right Jesus Christ, you are right for all eternity, but if you have the wrong Jesus Christ, then you are wrong for all eternity! Next time we will discuss why Jesus functioned as a man during His time on earth.