Christmas is less than a week away and billions of people around the world are celebrating the birth of Jesus. There is also debate around the world regarding who Jesus is and who He was. Different people can say they believe in Jesus and mean completely different things.
Christians proclaim Jesus to be the only begotten Son of God. Mormons would say Jesus is Lucifer’s brother (1). Muslims would say Jesus was a prophet and born of a virgin (2). Atheists would say Jesus was a teacher. Jehovah’s Witnesses would say Jesus was divine, but not God Himself (3).
If you believe what the Bible says and profess Christianity, then you believe that Jesus has always been, and will always be fully God. He has never stopped being God, from the beginning of eternity, to being born in a manger, to being crucified and raised from the dead, Jesus had never once not been God.
Jesus is seen in the Old Testament and written about in the Old Testament over 300 times in what are called Messianic prophecies. Some of these prophecies are vague and some are very specific, from where Jesus would be born (Micah 5:2, to how many coins Judas would use to betray Him (Zechariah 11:12-13). Jesus is seen on Earth in Daniel 3, and Ezekiel 1. One of the most common Christmas scriptures is from the Old Testament prophet Isaiah.
For unto us a Child is born,
Unto us a Son is given;
And the government will be upon His shoulder.
And His name will be called
Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Notice something important here is that Jesus is known as the Everlasting Father and Mighty God. Not the mighty prophet or partial God, partial human.
Before Jesus came to Earth He was God. While Jesus was here on Earth He was fully human and fully God. Now Jesus is still fully God and not fully human. So while Jesus walked on Earth people saw God, people touched God, they heard God speak, they saw God do miracles. God is not invisible. People have seen God and we will all see God when we pass away from this Earth.
Right now Jesus is not the same Jesus that we read about in the Gospels. In the Gospels Jesus is the representation of God the Father. Jesus explained this to Phillip in John 14. The people who saw Jesus here on Earth saw the Father.
It’s not until Revelation 1 that John saw what Jesus looks like now. That is the Jesus we will see in Heaven. He has white hair and eyes that are like blazing fire. He is the Everlasting One that was dead and now lives forever!
Jesus proclaims that He is the great I AM in John 8. The same I AM that God told Moses He was. That is why the Pharisees immediately picked up stones to kill Him. How could Jesus claim to be God? Yet people still say that Jesus never claimed to be God, of course He did! This was an issue for the Pharisees because Jesus looked like a human, because He was a human.
God came from Heaven Himself to show us and model to us how we should live as His sons and daughters. Jesus is the Son because we needed to see how to become His children. He is the perfect model and example for us to follow.
Jesus says that the Father is greater than Him because while Jesus was here on Earth He was limited to His human body. He could not be omnipresent, He was tempted by sin, He could, and was injured and experienced excruciating pain. Jesus never said that He was not fully God, He did say that His humanness was a sacrifice that He made for us.
So this Christmas let’s celebrate Jesus for who He truly was and is! Do not diminish His power, His glory, or water down who He is!