Friday 7 March 2014

False Dilemma of the Eranoites

A false dilemma that has recently been presented which is easy to address is would being the prophet like Moses refute Jesus being God or vice versa, The answer is a categorical NO.

In Acts 3, let us read the following:
"11 While the man held on to Peter and John, all the people were astonished and came running to them in the place called Solomon’s Colonnade. 12 When Peter saw this, he said to them: “Fellow Israelites, why does this surprise you? Why do you stare at us as if by our own power or godliness we had made this man walk? 13 The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of our fathers, has glorified his servant Jesus. You handed him over to be killed, and you disowned him before Pilate, though he had decided to let him go. 14 You disowned the Holy and Righteous One and asked that a murderer be released to you. 15 You killed the author of life, but God raised him from the dead. We are witnesses of this. 16 By faith in the name of Jesus, this man whom you see and know was made strong. It is Jesus’ name and the faith that comes through him that has completely healed him, as you can all see.

17 “Now, fellow Israelites, I know that you acted in ignorance, as did your leaders. 18 But this is how God fulfilled what he had foretold through all the prophets, saying that his Messiah would suffer. 19 Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord, 20 and that he may send the Messiah, who has been appointed for you—even Jesus. 21 Heaven must receive him until the time comes for God to restore everything, as he promised long ago through his holy prophets. 22 For Moses said, ‘The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among your own people; you must listen to everything he tells you. 23 Anyone who does not listen to him will be completely cut off from their people.’[a]

24 “Indeed, beginning with Samuel, all the prophets who have spoken have foretold these days. 25 And you are heirs of the prophets and of the covenant God made with your fathers. He said to Abraham, ‘Through your offspring all peoples on earth will be blessed.’[b] 26 When God raised up his servant, he sent him first to you to bless you by turning each of you from your wicked ways.”"

There are a number of things raised in the following passage:
1. Jesus is God by virtue of being the AUTHOR OF LIFE, which is not a title you can give to an ordinary man.
2. Jesus, despite being God is not the Father in heaven.
3. Jesus is also fully man as well as fully God and in light of his "taking the form of a slave" as Philippians 2:5-11 affirms, he is subservient to the Father in terms of rank and status, not in essence and nature.
4. Because Jesus is fully a man, he can be the prophet like Moses and be YHWH God at the same time.

Lest the Eranoites may object and say "Well what about Numbers 23:19, 1 Samuel 15:29 and Hosea 11:9?" Well let's read:
"Numbers 23:19 God is not human, that he should lie,
    not a human being, that he should change his mind.
Does he speak and then not act?
    Does he promise and not fulfill?"

"1 Samuel 15:29 He who is the Glory of Israel does not lie or change his mind; for he is not a human being, that he should change his mind.”"

"Hosea 11:9 I will not carry out my fierce anger,
    nor will I devastate Ephraim again.
For I am God, and not a man—
    the Holy One among you.
    I will not come against their cities."

Most assume that this passage would negate Jesus being God, some even go as far as saying "If God became a man, then God is not God any more".

The passage doesn't say that God cannot become a man and cease being God, The passage speaks on God's trustworthiness, that he will never lie to anyone.

The passages speak in a context when the incarnation had not yet taken place. Jesus being God is not one of the criteria of being the prophet like Moses.

As I have stated in the past:
"Additionally, the prophet like Moses is not limited to one individual and it culminates in Christ being the ultimate fulfillment of the prophecy, not some Gentile from a distant land who is centuries removed from the time of Christ. Wow, sounds familiar that last bit, it reminds me of a similar idea with the Muslim people. Though Rabbinic Jews and Christians disagree on the subject of Jesus being the prophet like Moses, both will a agree that the prophet like Moses refers to the prophetic office of Israel and that several prophets come after Moses and Christians believe that it culminated in Jesus Christ’s coming."

Jesus being God would not refute him being the prophet like Moses, in light of the fact that as a Man he is prophet, priest and king, which the same NT Erano quotes from in his writings affirms:

Luke 24:19 “What things?” he asked.

“About Jesus of Nazareth,” they replied. “He was a prophet, powerful in word and deed before God and all the people. 20 The chief priests and our rulers handed him over to be sentenced to death, and they crucified him; 21 but we had hoped that he was the one who was going to redeem Israel. And what is more, it is the third day since all this took place. 22 In addition, some of our women amazed us. They went to the tomb early this morning 23 but didn’t find his body. They came and told us that they had seen a vision of angels, who said he was alive. 24 Then some of our companions went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said, but they did not see Jesus.”

25 He said to them, “How foolish you are, and how slow to believe all that the prophets have spoken! 26 Did not the Messiah have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?” 27 And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.

There is NO dilemma being presented, there is no either or, Jesus is BOTH the prophet like Moses who speaks on God's behalf and he is YHWH God, although he is NOT the Father in heaven.

Answering Judaism.

1 comment:

  1. I had said the objection was, if God becomes man, then God is not a man anymore, that was a mistake and I have corrected it to what it should say.