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The Wednesday Word: Was Jesus ever called God?

We, followers of Christ need to be grounded in the truth that the One we are following is the eternal God. Contrary to some popular ideas, Jesus is indeed called God in numerous places of scripture: Take for example,

The Word was God, John 1:1.

Thomas called Jesus Lord and God, John 20.28.

We learn that God was manifest in the flesh, I Timothy 3:16.

And let’s not forget Romans 9:5, “Of whom, as concerning the flesh, Christ came who is over all God blessed forever.”

Away with these mischief makers who say that Jesus is not man and God at the same time. They know nothing of the Dual Nature of Christ.

Jesus is called Jehovah,

We learn in Numbers 21 that the Israelites tempted Jehovah. This is applied to Christ by the apostle in I Corinthians 10:9 when he says, ¨Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed of serpents.

Nor is Christ merely called Jehovah but Jehovah our righteousness (Jeremiah 23:6.) Christ is our righteousness and thus our God (2 Peter 1:1).

The Great God

He is called the great God and Saviour, Titus 2:13

Someone says but that is not speaking of Christ. Excuse me! Read the next verse. This Great God and Saviour gave Himself for our sins (verse 14). Therefore, Jesus is both the great God and Saviour. That’s good news for those of us who have trusted Him.

If language has any meaning, then we must look no further than Christ Jesus to discover God.

Attributes

Not only is Christ called God, but also the attributes of the Godhead are credited to him.

Eternity is ascribed to Him: for he is said to be before Abraham (John 8. 58). This evidently proves that Christ existed before he was born of a virgin.

Jesus is said to be Omniscience: Peter confessed ‘Lord, you know all things.’

He is Omnipresence: Matthew 18:10. Jesus Himself said, “Where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.”

Omnipotence …Divine power is attributed to Him (Hebrews 1:1). He upholds all things by the word of His power.

These things are sufficient to prove that Christ is God. The names of God and the attributes of the Godhead are ascribed to him: But there is more.

Works.

The works which only God can perform, are ascribed to the Lord Jesus. Creation is ascribed to Him. Hebrews 1:10. “Thou, Lord, in the beginning hath laid the foundation of the earth: and the heavens are the works of thine hands.” This is further confirmed in John 1:3, “All things were made by him, and without him was not anything made that was made.”

Additional witness is given in Colossians 1:16. It reads; “By him were all things created that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones or dominions, or principalities or powers; all things were created by him, and for him.”

The Government of the universe is ascribed to him in Hebrews 1:3 where we are told that he is upholding all things by the word of his power.

The work of our Salvation is ascribed fully to Christ (Matthew 1:21). It would be great error to deny it, when it is evident from so many places in the New-Testament. Furthermore,

Redemption is His (Acts 20:28).

Remission of sins is His to give (Matthew.9: 6).

Eternal Life is His to give (John 10:28).

The building of the Church is credited to Him. This again is strong proof that He is God for “He that built all things is God” (Hebrews 3:4).

Jesus is the Lord God. We worship Him (Matthew 28:9) and believe on Him (John 14:1).

And that’s the Gospel Truth!

Miles Mckee

www.milesmckee.com 

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The Wednesday Word: Behold your God!

“He shall feed His flock like a shepherd: He shall gather the lambs with His arm, and carry them in His bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young” (Isaiah 40:11).

Pause a while and think of this verse. It gives us a wonderful picture of the Lord Jesus. Let’s unfold some of its treasures word for word.

‘He’

Who is this ‘He’?

He is the Messiah (Matthew 1:1).

He is Immanuel; God with us (Matthew 1:23).

He is God manifest in the flesh ( I Timothy 3:16).

He is the one Who is revealed in the Word of God under a vast array of titles, names, characters and offices. For example, He is,

Our Hope – 1 Timothy 1:1

Our Peace – Ephesians 2:14

Our Prophet – Hebrews 1:1-3

Our Redeemer – Job 19:25, Galatians 3:13

Our Rock – 1 Corinthians 10:4

Our Sacrifice – 1 John 4:10

Our Saviour – Luke 2:11

The Supreme Creator Over All – 1 Corinthians 1:16-17

The Resurrection and the Life – John 11:25

The Door – John 10:9

The Way – John 14:6

The Eternal Word – John 1:1

The True Vine – John 15:1

The Truth – ” John 8:32

Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace – Isaiah 9:6

‘Shall’ – Without doubt, or fear, or uncertainty.

‘Feed’ – Nourish, provide for, sustain.

‘His Flock’ ––His own, peculiar, personal, property. The Flock is given by the Father (John 6:37), redeemed by the Son (Ephesians 1:7) and brought alive by the Holy Spirit (Titus 3:5; Ephesians 2:1); therefore, the flock is ‘His’ by gift – by purchase and by the conquest of grace.

‘Like a Shepherd’ In verse 10 it says, “Behold your God who shall come.” Do you really want to see what God is like? The 11th verse gives us the answer. Did you notice it? Look at the 11th verse. It says, “He shall feed His flock like a shepherd:” He’s a shepherd. This is our God. This is His portrait. He goes before His sheep, removing hindrances and difficulties; to shield us from danger and protect us from enemies. He seeks us when we go astray and provides the best pasture for us.

‘He shall Gather.’ That’s what a shepherd does. He gathers. He doesn’t scatter. No ‘shape up or ship out’ message comes from His lips.

‘The Lambs’ – He gathers the lambs in His arms and carries them in his bosom; these are strong arms. Verse 10 says ‘The Lord will come with strong hand and His arm shall rule for Him.’ The Father’s arms neither grow tired nor weary carrying His children.

“What have I to dread,

What have I to fear,

Leaning on the everlasting arms?

I have blessed peace

With my Lord so near,

Leaning on the everlasting arms.”

Leaning, Leaning,

Safe and secure from all alarms

Leaning, leaning,

Leaning on the everlasting arms.”

Remember how Jesus told it? He said, “I am the Good Shepherd. The Good Shepherd gives His life for the sheep” (John 10:11). He also declared, “I am the door. By Me if any man enters in, he shall be saved and shall go in and out and find pasture” (John 10:9). He is also the Great Shepherd. That is why we read in Hebrews 13:20, “Now the God of peace who brought again from the dead, that Great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant.”

Our Lord is the Good, Chief and Great Shepherd.

Behold your God!

He is pictured as a shepherd with little lambs in his arms.

Behold your God!

He is the shepherd with lambs in his bosom.

Behold your God!

He gently leads those that are with young.

Behold your God!

Our God is our Shepherd. What a Shepherd! He encircles His flock with tender care and love. He loses none of us. I want to shout, Hallelujah! This is our God. He is the God who comes as a shepherd with the lambs in His arm.

And that’s the Gospel Truth!

Miles Mckee

www.milesmckee.com 

The Wednesday Word: Jesus, the Unabridged Version of God

One of the reasons God became a man was to destroy Satan and open the way to eternal life. Nobody but God was qualified for this task because none but the Almighty was strong or wise enough to accomplish such a feat.

The Mighty God, our Redeemer, came to undo and destroy the shocking distress that Satan had exacted upon us … and did so by becoming human.

Why human? Why did He not become a super angel?

He became human because it was the human race that Satan had destroyed in the Fall. It was thus, as a true human, the eternal Word was born. In His doing and dying, He received the full onslaught of Satan and put him away by His great sacrifice at Calvary (Colossians 2:15).

To paraphrase Anselm (AD 1033-AD 1109),

“And so also was it proper that the devil, who was man’s tempter, and had conquered him when he ate of the tree, should be conquered by another man as he suffered on the tree.”

Anselm: Cur Deus Homo: Chapter 3

May we always be thrilled the boundless Gospel truth of the incarnation.

‘He left His heavenly crown,

His glory laid aside.

On wings of love came down,

And wept, and bled, and died.

What He endured no tongue can tell,

To save our souls from death and hell’.

As true believers we hold, defend and propagate the truth of the full revelation of the Almighty God in Christ alone.

From all eternity the Lord Jesus Christ is the eternally, self-existent One who was and is and is to come. He is Yahweh, the great I Am, the Alpha and the Omega, the Word made flesh. He was and is God. His divine nature was unborrowed, underived, andunconferred.

It is Jesus, the Lord from heaven, who is above all (John 3:31).

He has the fullness of the Godhead bodily (Colossians 2:9).

He has and is both the wisdom and the power of God (1 Corinthians 1:24)

In Him are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge (Colossians 2:3).

As Gospel-centered believers, it is our privilege to propagate the message that the Lord Jesus possesses all that God is. If we want to know how God acts, then we study Jesus and see what He has done. Jesus is the unabridged version of God: He is the very mystery of God! Jesus is the full and accurate interpretation of the mind of God. To meet Him is to meet God. To be saved by Him is to be saved by God. He is the final word from God to man (Hebrews 1:1-3).

It should be of no surprise, therefore, that Christ is still despised and rejected by men.

The radical Muslims, as they vie for world domination,witness against His deity.

The radical Hindus think nothing of attacking Christ’s followers in India, Nepal and other places.

The Mormons and Jehovah Witnesses deny that He is the Mighty God.

Even, in many Christian circles, Christ’s true identity has become blurred.

Who then will stand up for Jesus in this generation?

Will we?

Will you?

As for me and my house, we intend to make more than much of Jesus. We appreciate what John Newton stated; He said,

“I am well satisfied it will not be a burden to me at the hour of death, nor be laid to my charge at the day of judgment, that I have thought too highly of Jesus, expected too much from him myself, or labored too much in commending and setting him forth to others, as the Alpha and Omega, the true God and eternal life.

– John Newton (1725-1807), English minister & author of the hymn “Amazing Grace”

And that’s the Gospel Truth!

Miles Mckee

www.milesmckee.com 

The Wednesday Word: The Man Who Walked on Water

December 19, 2018 Leave a comment

God moves in a mysterious way

His wonders to perform;

He plants His footsteps in the sea

And rides upon the storm.

William Cowper

Matthew 14: 25-27

Some years ago in India, a noted exponent of yoga claimed he would walk upon water. Six hundred spectators came to observe him perform this feat and paid good money just to watch.

The Yogi warmed up by swallowing what he said were tacks and nitric acid. And then in order to warm his feet, walked over some hot embers. Then he climbed to the top of a steel tank filled with water, tried to stand on top of the water and sank immediately to the bottom.

Walking on water? Impossible!!..well almost.

Do you remember the story of Matthew 14?

Christ’s disciples were out on the lake struggling in the midst of a tempest. The once calm sea had turned to a boiling cauldron. They were in distress, and here comes the Master to their rescue.

Look at Him, Master of Land and Sea … Here He comes, walking on the waves. Look at him. Observe His regal bearing. Look at Him with the wind in His hair. Look at Him planting His footsteps on the water. Look at Him, His garments billowing back, …What majesty!

What a demonstration of Deity.

Some hours before these events transpired, Jesus had sent His disciples across the lake in a boat while He retired to pray. But when the disciples were in the middle of the sea, a storm broke out. The disciples were in deep, deep trouble and Jesus came walking to them.

This is amazing … how did He know the disciple’s location? It was pitch black. There would have been no visibility. It was the Fourth Watch…after 3 AM. Despite this, Jesus walked straight out to them, in the middle of the lake, in complete darkness.

Not surprisingly, the disciples are in shock and horror. They think they are seeing a ghost. But their horror soon turns to Hallelujahs when they hear the Master say, “It is I; be not afraid.”

What Jesus literally said is, “Don’t be afraid, I Am.” He used the name for Yahweh. He claimed to be the ‘I Am’ to identify Himself. What He told them was, ‘I am GOD the Most Holy and Only One.’

Walking on water is spectacular but that’s not the point we want to take away from this. The point is that it is the divine prerogative of Yahweh alone to walk on water. Job 9:8 says; “He alone spreads out the heavens and treads upon the waves of the sea.”

Yahweh alone treads upon the sea.

Jesus walked on water.

Therefore, Jesus is Yahweh!

Think about it, when’s the last time you saw anyone walk on water that wasn’t frozen? Indeed, the possibility of such a thing as a person walking on waster is non-existent. I’ve read that the Egyptian hieroglyphic for ‘impossibility’ is a man walking on waves. Even Neptune, the Roman God of the Sea, was never depicted as walking on water. This would have been too great a feat for Him so instead of walking, he swam.

Many of us who have grown up knowing about the events in Christ’s life can easily miss their significance. We are not surprised when we see Jesus demonstrating His power and majesty because, after all, that’s the kind of thing He does. However, one of the reasons He did these wonderful things was to demonstrate that He was God in flesh appearing!

When it came to crossing the Red Sea, God opened the water for Moses.

When it came to crossing the Jordan River, God opened the waters for Joshua.

But when it came to Himself, God just walked over the water like it was a paved road. If Jesus had split the water, we would have seen that he was a great prophet but since he walked on water, we see that He, in fact, is God.

And that’s the Gospel Truth!

Miles Mckee

www.milesmckee.com

The Wednesday Word: More about the Mystery of Christ

Colossians 2:9, “For the fullness of the Godhead dwells bodily in Him.”

Sadhu Sundar Singh, an Indian preacher of another generation, used to illustrate the incarnation mystery in this way. A simple countryman was being shown a red glass bottle. They told him it was full of milk. The countryman couldn’t believe it was filled with white liquid till he saw the beverage poured out from it. The redness of the bottle had hidden the colour of the contents of the bottle.

Sadhu said, so it was and is with our Lord’s humanity. Man saw Him tired, hungry, suffering, weeping and thought He was only man. ‘He was made in the likeness of men,’ yet He ever is ‘God over all, blessed forever.

The red milk bottle is a good illustration but there is an even better one and that is the Tabernacle in the days of Moses. It looked plain and ordinary on the outside, but inside it housed the very glory and presence of God. What a glorious picture of Christ! He looked just like an ordinary man, but the fulness of the Godhead dwelt in Him.

In Colossians 2:9, we see our New Testament Tabernacle. We see once more that Jesus is both human and divine. Of course, Christ’s enemies say that here the word ‘Godhead’ does not actually mean Godhead or they say that this verse means that it was merely the power of God which dwelt in Christ. It is astonishing to discover the hatred that men still harbour towards Jesus and the truth of His deity. However, the Bible cannot be clearer on Christ’s identity than it is in this verse. This verse, according to Calvin,

“ … means simply, that God is wholly found in him (Christ), so that he who is not content with Christ alone, desires something better and more excellent than God. The sum is this, that God has manifested himself to us fully and perfectly in Christ.”

Calvin’s Commentaries.

In Isaiah 11:2-5, we are given a prophetic picture of the Lord Jesus which conveys something of this fullness. There we read,

“..and the Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon Him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord; and shall make Him of quick understanding in the fear of the Lord: and He shall not judge after the sight of His eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of His ears: but with righteousness shall He judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and He shall smite the earth with the rod of His mouth, and with the breath of His lips shall He slay the wicked. And righteousness shall be the girdle of His loins, and faithfulness the girdle of His reins.

Notice how Christ demonstrates the sevenfold Spirit of God!

The Spirit of the Lord.

The Spirit of Wisdom.

The Spirit of Understanding.

The Spirit of Counsel.

The Spirit of Might.

The Spirit of Knowledge.

The Spirit of the Fear of the Lord.

The fullness and perfections of the Godhead were and are truly manifest in the Lord Jesus. The foundation of our faith then is that He who died on the cross was God incarnate. When we meet Christ Jesus, we meet with God in His fullness. This is the foundation upon which we can build our life and eternal destiny.

“Mortals with joy beheld his face,

Th’ eternal Father’s only Son;

How full of truth! how full of grace!

When through his eyes the Godhead shone.”

Isaac Watts

And that’s the Gospel Truth!

Miles Mckee

www.milesmckee.com 

The Wednesday Word: Yes Indeed, He Must be God!

“Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ” (Titus 2:13).

When the first missionaries arrived in Japan they encountered a young Japanese man who wanted to improve his knowledge of English. So they gave him the Gospel of John to translate. In a short time, the would-be learner became very restless and agitated. At last, he gushed out with the question, “Who is this Man about whom I have been reading, this Jesus? You call him a man, but He must be God.”

Yes indeed, He must be God!

But, not only can we say, He must be God, we can, with certainty, declare that He is, in fact, God. Notice how His deity is spoken of loudly and clearly in Titus 2:13. Observe how Jesus is clearly and plainly designated as the ‘great God.’

There can be no ambiguity about His deity. This passage is unmistakably about Christ.

In verse 11, He is called the ‘grace of God’, and in verse 13, He is designated as the ‘great God.’ Then, in verse 14, this same one who is termed the ‘grace of God’ and the ‘great God’ is said to be the one who has redeemed His people from all iniquity. It doesn’t get plainer than that.

Those who deny the deity of Christ try to argue that this verse says both the Father and the Son will appear at the blessed hope. However, nowhere in Paul’s epistles is the Father said to ‘appear.’ The word ‘appear,’ on the other hand, is used continuously of Christ. He is the revelation of the one True and Living God. He ‘appeared,’ as already mentioned, in verse 11 of this chapter. In 1 Timothy 6:14 we are told to, “keep this commandment without spot, unrebukable, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ.” And we are informed He shall “judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom;” 2 Timothy 4:1.

The One who will appear is both the great God and our Saviour. What a stunning and humbling thought this is, that the man who suffered and shed His blood for us is none other than the great God whom the Old Testament declares to be;

“God of gods, and Lord of lords, a great God, a mighty, and a terrible, which regards not persons, nor takes reward:” (Deuteronomy 10:17).

This same great God who died for His people and rose again from the dead will appear a second time. For;

“Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto those that look for him will he appear the second time, without sin, unto salvation, (Hebrews 9:28).

So, when we read that we are, “Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;” (Titus 2:13), we know that, contrary to the JW (Jehovah Witness) teaching, Christ is in no way to be considered the little God, but the great one.

And that’s the Gospel Truth!

Miles Mckee

www.milesmckee.com 

The Wednesday Word – Jesus, God over All

Romans 9:5. “Of whom as concerning the flesh Christ came, who is God over all, blessed for ever. Amen” (ESV)

God became a man. He became a member of the human race. He became flesh and blood.

Stunning!

Although He became human, He remained entirely and thoroughly the Lord God from Heaven.

Even more stunning!

He was and is the Mighty God, the eternal, self-existent one who was and is and is to come.

He is ‘over all.’

That means,

There is no one above Him.

He is over all angels.

He is above all created beings.

He governs all.

What exceedingly good news! It was the Lord of Glory Himself who came to redeem us. We were helpless, and God Himself loved us enough to come to the rescue.

The God of the Arians (Jehovah Witnesses and others) didn’t love us enough to come here to save us. He, according to their teaching, created and sent someone else to do the job for him.

Perhaps their god didn’t want to get his hands dirty? Or maybe it was because he didn’t like the idea of pain, suffering, rejection and humiliation? Or perhaps he was occupied with more pressing matters? But whatever the reason, he, according to them, stayed in Heaven and sent a substitute to represent Him. He can, therefore, be likened to a man who while walking over a bridge with his son spies someone drowning in the river below. His heart is so smitten with concern that he asks his son to jump over the side to rescue and save the drowning man. But, not so the God of the Bible! He laid down the vestiges of royalty, wrapped himself with humanity and came here Himself to rescue and save us from the river of death by bearing our sins on the cross. Jesus was man’s substitute, not God’s. As Bonar said,

‘Turn your eye to the cross and see these two things, – the Crucifiers and the Crucified——-See the Crucified. It is God himself; incarnate love. It is the God who made you, suffering, dying for the ungodly. Can you suspect his grace? Can you cherish evil thoughts of him? Can you ask anything farther to awaken in you the fullest and most unreserved confidence? Will you misinterpret that agony and death by saying that they do not mean grace, or that the grace which they mean is not for you? Call to mind that which is written, – “Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us” 1 John 3:16.

Horatius Bonar: Christ Died for the Ungodly.

In the scheme which denies Christ’s Deity, we are presented with a god who was either unwilling or unable to come here himself and rescue us. We must then ask, had their god become too frail to undertake the mission? Did he need someone more energetic and youthful to complete the task? Candidly speaking, this business of God creating some super-angel to do His redeeming work leaves God looking somewhat suspect in His commitment to us. Frankly, I’m not impressed with a god who wouldn’t come here Himself to rescue me! A god who stayed in heaven while I was utterly ruined cannot melt my heart. A god who delegates my redemption to another cannot command my loyalty. On this matter, I take my stand with Luther who said,

“Wherefore, he that preaches a God to me that died not for me the death on the cross, that God will I not receive.”

Martin Luther: Smalcald Articles.

And that’s the Gospel Truth!

Miles Mckee

www.milesmckee.com