Proving that Jesus is God from Old Testament Scripture

This article is also available in Urdu.

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When reading the New Testament it seems so obvious at times that Jesus is God and equal with the Father.[1]  But in other passages Jesus’ full divinity is more ambiguous.  I believe that conclusive proof of Jesus’ full divinity can be seen when we compare certain Old Testament verses with corresponding New Testament verses.  The key to this is recognising God’s Name in Scripture.

There is only one true, supreme God – the  God of the Bible – and his Name is YHWH.  YHWH is usually translated as LORD (all capital letters) in English translations of the Old Testament.  Most good Bible versions explain this translation in their preface. Check it out.

Out of reverence for the holiness of God, the Jews stopped saying God’s Name a couple of hundred years BC, so the correct pronunciation of YHWH is uncertain.[2]  The Hebrew language does not contain vowels, but we can ascertain that the first syllable of God’s Name is probably pronounced “Yah” because it is found in the word Hallelujah (or Halleluyah).  Hallelujah means “Praise the LORD” or, more correctly, “Praise YHWH”.  Some Christians pronounce YHWH as “Yahweh”.[3]

Yahweh means: “I Am who I Am.”  God explained his Name to Moses during the burning bush encounter when God commissioned Moses to free Israel from Egyptian bondage (Exodus 3:13-15).  God’s Name, the “I Am”, gives a sense of the enigmatic, transcendent and eternal nature of God (Cf Revelation 1:8).

Three infinite and eternal persons belong to this Godhead called Yahweh: (1) the Father, (2) the Son, Jesus Christ, and (3) the Holy Spirit. These three persons are bound closely together in unity of power and purpose and are often referred to as the Trinity.  Yahweh is one God made up of three persons.

The fact that Jesus Christ is Yahweh can be determined by comparing the following Old Testament verses with the corresponding New Testament verses.

Isaiah 40:3 speaks about preparing the way for the LORD (Yahweh).  When we compare this verse with Mark 1:3 we see that Jesus is the LORD who had the way prepared for him by John the Baptist.

In Joel 2:32a it says that whoever calls upon the Name of the LORD (Yahweh) will be saved.  This verse is quoted by Peter in Acts 2:21, and by Paul in Romans 10:13.  Both apostles are clearly referring to Jesus as the LORD.

In Isaiah 6:1-10 we read about the marvelous vision that Isaiah had revealing the glory of the LORD (Yahweh).  John tells us in John 12:40-41 that this vision revealed the glory of Jesus.

In Isaiah 44:6, the LORD (Yahweh) refers to himself as “the First and the Last”.  In Revelation 1:8 and 17, Jesus similarly refers to himself as “the Alpha and the Omega” and “the First and the Last”.

In Zechariah 12:10 the LORD (Yahweh) is speaking and says that, “they will look on Me whom they have pierced.”[4] This is obviously Jesus speaking (Psalm 22:16; John 19:34).  This passage from Zechariah appears again in Revelation 1:7b and is clearly about Jesus Christ.

As Yahweh (along with the Father and the Holy Spirit) Jesus is eternal, having all the qualities and attributes of God.  Even on earth, in human form, Jesus was the image of the invisible God, and the exact representation of God’s nature (Colossians 1:15; Hebrews 1:3).  Jesus is not some sort of demigod; rather, the fullness of deity (“God-ness”) dwells in him  in bodily form (Colossians 2:9).  Jesus Christ, born of the virgin Mary, was fully man and fully God, having both a human and divine nature at the same time.

As eternal God, Jesus Christ existed before he came to earth as a human baby.  He existed before the creation of the earth.  In fact, Jesus was instrumental in its creation.  The Bible says that all things were created by Him, and that nothing was made without Him (John 1:1-3; Colossians 1:16-17; Hebrews 1:2).   Jesus is not a created being himself.

The Scriptures teach us that there is only one God and we are commanded that we should worship no other gods (Exodus 20:3).  From Scripture we can see that Jesus Christ is worshipped eternally, further proving his deity and place in the Godhead (Philippians 2:10-11; Revelation 5:9-14).

As wonderful as Yahweh’s Name is,[5] there is a name which has even greater significance and importance:

Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him a name which is above every name; that at the name of Jesus  every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father.  Philippians 2:9-11.

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Endnotes

[1] Jesus’ disciples, those closest to him, testified that Jesus is God. Peter writes “our God and Saviour, Jesus Christ” in 2 Peter 1:1; Thomas addresses Jesus as “My Lord and my God!” in John 20:28; and  John called the Word/Jesus, “God” in John 1:1.  Also, the apostle Paul calls Jesus “the great God and Saviour” in Titus 2:13

[2] King David had no problem with declaring the Name of God.  He uses it frequently in his Psalms.  In Psalm 8:1 & 9 he says (sings), “O Yahweh, our Lord, how majestic is your Name in all the earth!”
Instead of saying God’s Name, many Jews replace YHWH with “Ha’Shem” when reading from Hebrew scripture aloud.  Ha’Shem means “the Name” in Hebrew.

[3] “Jehovah” is another way of saying God’s Name and appeared in old English translations of the Old Testament; but this pronunciation has fallen out of favour because it is considered inaccurate by some.

[4] Some paraphrases, such as the Good News Bible and the Living Bible, do not translate this verse accurately.

[5] “O LORD (Yahweh), our Lord (Adonai), how majestic is your Name in all the earth!”  Psalm 8:1 & 9.

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Posted July 17th, 2009 . Categories/Tags: Christian Theology, Christology, , , , , , , , ,

53 comments on “Proving that Jesus is God from Old Testament Scripture

  1. Heath says:

    Thank you Anthony

    deuteronomy 6:4 Hear O Israel the LORD (capitals) our god the LORD (capitals again) is one.

    Timothy 3:16 God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.
    (like water,ice steam, same thing but manifested differently)

    When I read the bible I see that it takes a name(singular) no were in the bible does it say names.

    as for the name jesus its only 400 years old,and yes your right it does not say jesus in the OT.

    2 chronicles 7;14
    if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves,and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then i will hear from heaven.

    our father in heaven hallowed be thy name (what name)

    bless you anthony, and keep studying your bible.

  2. Anthony says:

    Heath thanks for your response. I would like to ask you some question if u don’t mind to see if your stance holds up against God’s word. 1. Why is it no where in script is God called or seen as a Unitarian? 2. If God is Unitarian the explain Gen.19:24 where Yahweh(Lord) rained brimstone and fire from Yahweh out of heaven? 3.if God is Unitarian why do we see the Father,Son, and Holy Spirit clearly distinguished from each other in the same verse? In the NT Jesus is referred to as “the Son” over 200 times . I see many plural description look at Isa 54:5

  3. Marg says:

    Heath, Judging by your comments it seems that you have not read the article or have not understood it.

    Please read the article and it may answer some of your questions.

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