...thoughts expressed here are not necessarily final.

May 30, 2005 Happy Memorial Day

Someone has sais that Memorial day is the most holy of the civil holidays. I think that may be true if one considers the complex issues associated with war and death and faith. No matter where you are coming from, we must leave the motivations of hearts to the discernment of God alone. We are left to honor our dead who died in the pursuit of righteousness and justice, whether that is or is no longer the American Way. Lest we forget, freedom is the most costly commodity next to responsibility.

We shall see Him as He is

Seraphim shall veil their faces
But we shall see him as he is
Cherubim will cry their praises
But we shall see him as he is
Joining elders with one voice
But we shall see him as he is
In adoration all rejoice.
And we shall see him as he is

(background vocals)
Holy Holy Holy
Holy Holy Holy
Holy Holy Holy
Holy Holy Holy

He is the light of heaven and He is the light of earth
Tho in a darkenened mirror we perceive his matchless worth.
We see ever more clearly as we walk in the light
As he is in the light-so our blind hearts gain new sight

A fire, a light, a living way
And we shall see him as he is
Consumes our heart when we obey.
And we shall see him as he is
From glory to glory we proceed
And we shall see him as he is
Abandoned to the Word we heed
And we shall see him as he is.

(background vocals)
Holy Holy Holy
Holy Holy Holy
Holy Holy Holy
Holy Holy Holy

He is the light of heaven and He is the light of earth
Tho in a darkenened mirror we perceive his matchless worth.
We see ever more clearly as we walk in the light
As he is in the light-so our blind hearts gain new sight

June 1, 2005
Anthony Foster

June 1, 2005 The Deity of Christ is being trashed again- so why should today be any different?

Here is an interesting problem, and one that is on many minds these days what with the flourishing of books like Dan Brown's DaVinci Code. The two issues are the Deity of Christ and the rreliability of scripture (the Word). Ultimately we might say the two are one issue..

How would you communicate the Deity of Christ to someone who doesn't believe the Bible attests to this?

The question presupposes that the listener assumes that the scriptures have something true to say, which makes the task of presenting the scriptural evidence for the Deity of Christ viable. Typically I find that the task of establishing the authority of scripture with postmoderns is a more daunting task. Once the authority of scripture is established, scripture speaks plainly and is unequivocating in its assertation that Christ is God. So this is just one side of the coin.

I have for years used mnemonic devices of my own construction and have accordingly marked my Bible to present the case for the deity of Christ: the P’s of Christ and the Witnesses to Christ to first present Christ’s claims to deity and then the witness of scripture to affirm His deity. The memorization of these texts have done more to enable me to be a faithful witness to the all surpassing glory of God in the face of Christ Jesus than anything else I can think of. The best thing this side of heaven is having the scriptures issue forth from your soul in love in such a situation.

The Deity of Christ Revealed in Scripture

Many people try to say that Christ is a good man, a great teacher, but C. S. Lewis’s argument attains- one can NOT say that he is a good man if it can be established that he claimed he was God. Either He is far more than a man and is indeed God, or he is a lunatic or a liar and not a good man.

Jesus as he is portrayed in the scriptures is far bigger and compelling than any of his witnesses. His reality is the source of their witness, so I begin with Jesus himself. When one sees Christ as he is portrayed in scripture and from his own words, spiritual light is immediately manifested. The light of the knowledge of the glory of God (2 Cor. 4:6) shows forth and is seen with any who have been given eyes to see.

Power claimed

Jesus identified himself as the Son of Man. In fact this is his most common title for himself- he used it around eighty times of himself. This is the Son of Man of Daniel 7 who approaches the Ancient of Days and receives power:

13"I kept looking in the night visions and behold, with the clouds of heaven
One like a Son of Man was coming, He came up to the Ancient of Days
And was presented before Him. 14"And to Him was given dominion,
Glory and a kingdom That all the peoples, nations and men of every language
Might serve Him His dominion is an everlasting dominion which will not pass away and His kingdom is one which will not be destroyed.

This is the same Son of Man of Revelation 1 who appears to John on Patmos and who is ultimately identified with God in that book. Jesus applied this to himself one final time in Matthew 26:23 which precipitated his death at the hands of the Jewish rulers.
Jesus claimed simultaneity and co-existence with God in John 14:21-23. He accepted Thomas’ worship in John 20:28 and declared himself to be the resurrection and the life in John 11:25. The power over life and death which he claimed in John 5:21 belongs to God alone according to Psalm 119.

In the book of Revelation the Alpha and Omega is identified first as God in Revelation 1:18 "I am the Alpha and the Omega," says the Lord God, "who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty" and then as “I, Jesus” in Revelation 22 where we are told to worship God at the throne of God and the lamb, who receives the worship of the hosts of heaven and is worthy to sit upon the throne. This is an amazing correlation, and is ultimately to be included in Jesus’ witness to himself, as the closing statements of the book of Revelation demand. It is the revelation of Jesus Christ, not the “revelations of John” as popularly conceived.

Preexistence claimed

In John 3:13 Jesus claimed to be from heaven, saying that no one had come from heaven but Him. In John 8:58 Jesus says "before Abraham was, I AM," echoing Exodus 2:14-15. These were astounding claims.

Privileges claimed

Jesus claimed to have a relationship to God that is available only to God Himself within the Trinity. In John 10:30 he says “ I and the Father are One", and that to know and see himself was to know and see the Father in John 14:7-9.

Possessions claimed

Jesus made claims to possess things that belong to God. If he is less than God, these claims would be blasphemous. He claimed to possess the angels in Matthew 13 :41 and Luke 12:8-9. These angels are said to belong to God in Luke 15:10. Jesus also claimed that the Kingdom belonged to Him in Luke 22:29-30 and to Pilate in John 18:36; the thief on the cross acknowledged this. In Revelation 11 and 12 the multitudes of heaven echo this assertion.

Prerogatives claimed

Jesus claimed authority that would be impossible for anyone less than God. He claimed to have authority to forgive sins in Mark 2:5-9 and Matthew 9 and Luke 5 when he healed the paralytic. This caused the scribes to say that only God alone can forgive sins and declared Jesus a blasphemer. They were half right; the Psalms are replete with the witness that God alone forgives sins. In these same passages the scripture tells us Jesus knew the spiritual condition of men’s hearts in Mark 2:8 and Luke 5:22.

Jesus claimed to be the judge of the world. In Matthew 25:31-46 Jesus who identified himself to be the son of man, separates the sheep from the goats. It is he who determines eternal destiny.

Jesus claimed to have the authority to redefine the status of God’s law. In Mark 2:27-28 he determines the Sabbath and claimed to be the fulfillment of the law. On several occasions he said, “You have heard it said, but I say”, where he places his words on the level of the Old Testament scriptures. He never claimed “the word of the Lord came to me saying” as did the prophets.

Presuppositions of Christ

Jesus never denied the charges leveled against Him by the Pharisees that he claimed to be God. He accepted Peter’s estimation of Him as the “Christ, the Son of the living God” and linked his will to that of the Father’s in John 5:2-18.
Many more examples could be cited but within the constraints of this essay, I will move on to the witness to the Christ from scripture.

The witnesses’ Testimony to the Deity of Christ

The witnesses who wrote the New Testament by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit are trustworthy. Their writings manifest a clear headedness and intelligence that is as compelling as their moral vision. They have distinctive stories to tell, but are unified in their one contention that Christ is God incarnate.

The witness of the Old Testament

Old Testament messianic prophecies and statements about God find stunning fulfillment in the life of Christ. The incredible detail in which Jesus fulfilled dozens of Old Testament prophecies is mind boggling. The quickest place to take skeptics is to the book of Hebrews which coherently links the nature of the Messiah and the deity of the Son of God. He is the servant son of Isaiah 52-53 and Romans 8:26-38. Jesus alone supernaturally fulfills the Old Testament offices of prophet, priest and king. He alone fulfills the typology of scripture, and he alone is the central figure of God’s redemptive plan throughout history to restore God’s image in man and thus secure man’s relationship to himself by bearing His own wrath. Once the scriptural data is established, another conversation can establish the theological necessity of the dual nature of the God-Man.

The witness of John

In John 1 we learn that the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us and that the Word was with God and the Word WAS God. This same Word is identified as Jesus here and in 1 John 1. John reports on Jesus’ witness to himself in the book of Revelation as noted above. In fact John evidences a focus on the deity of Christ in all of his writings, and wrote of it so our joy might be complete.

The witness of the writer of Hebrews

The scripture tells us that Jesus is the exact representation of the invisible God in Hebrews 1:3 and that God created the world through Him. He upholds all things by the word of His power and in verse 8 the Son is addressed as God. Hebrews goes on to delineate his superiority to angels, men and High priests. He is God, the architect of the very household Moses served in.

The witness of Paul

Christ’s deity is declared: Colossians 1:15- 20 is a key passage that declares the Son is the express image of God and that in Him all things in the universe hold together. In Him the pleroma of the Godhead dwells bodily (Col 2:9).

Christ’s deity is confirmed: the claims Christ made in Matthew 25 (see above) are confirmed by Paul in 2 Timothy 4:1-2 and 2 Corinthians 5 where the judgment seat “of Christ” is spoken of. Genesis 18:25 and Joel 3:12 declare explicitly from the Old Testament that God is the judge of the earth and of all the nations. Paul also confirms Christ’s claims in Philippians 2 5-11 where he is declared the form of God; all that is the essence of God. That passage also affirms the preexistence of Christ in verse 6.

The witness from general argument

There are other references to Christ with the title Lord where Old Testament passages that clearly refer to God are applied to Jesus. Peter does this when he quotes Isaiah 8:13 in 1 Peter 3:15 and Paul does it in quoting Joel 2:31-32 in Romans 10:13. I can cite other references where this use of kurios is applied both to the Father and the Son interchangeably throughout the New Testament. Even the demons witness to the identity of Jesus in Luke 4:34 when they beg Him not to destroy them!

The witness of the resurrection

The most powerful witness that validates Christ’s claims to deity is the resurrection itself. The resurrection was evidence that God validated the earthly ministry of Christ. It validated his claim to the title Son of Man, the one who rules forever. It validates his perfect life which is only possible for God Himself. It validates his claim in John 2 and 10, Mark 8, Mark 10 and elsewhere to be able to lay down his own life and take it up again.

The Jews did not attempt to deny the empty tomb, and they would have given anything to produce a corpse. According to 1 Corinthians 15:6, 500 witnesses attested to his post resurrection appearances. Eyewitness accounts were there to match up to the claims of the early church, whose very lives were on the line. No one has ever explained away the empty tomb.


To conclude, the central figure of the whole Bible, the book of God, is Jesus Christ. The Bible’s presentation of Jesus is comprehensive. He is prefigured in every book of the Old Testament in God’s dealings with man in the history of redemption. He is the agent of creation. He is the true intercessor and mediator between God and man in the beginning as at the end. He is the promised seed of the woman preserved through many toils and dangers. He is truly Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the one who was before Abraham, the one Moses wrote of. We see him revealed in the types and Christophanies, the scarlet thread, the servant son who will be David’s greater son, the true vine and Israel of God. He is the righteousness of Yahweh., the eternal warrior- breaker-king and the glory of God in the pillar of cloud and fire. He is the One enthroned above the cherubim in Isaiah 37 and is the same mercy seat (propitiation) in Romans 3:25. He is revealed in the ark of Noah and the ark of covenant, the law and the offices, and he is seen in the tabernacle and temple. He is I AM.

As the prophet Isaiah said in Isaiah 40 of the shepherding Lord who sits upon the circle of the earth, “Behold your God!” As the angel says at the close of the book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ, “Worship God!” When we see and believe the glory of God in the face of Christ Jesus, who alone is God (Mark 10:18), the assurance of the hope awakened in us by all the evidences we see in scripture will never disappoint us.

Anthony Foster


On our faces- lost in wonder
We are undone and torn asunder
Now we tremble- now we gaze
In your presence-we are amazed
Shaken in our inward parts
Devastated in our hearts
Dare we stay here in this place
Yes, we dare to stand by grace.

When we bow down, when we fall
On our knees to praise and call
On the name above all names
We will never be the same.
Place upon our lips your coals
Be the purging of our souls
You will sear and purify
Dying we live, living we die.

In the rending of our veil
Comprehending we prevail
All our hopes are placed above
In the light of Holy love.
Holy justice, holy wrath
Holy light to light the path
Holy mercy builds this place
We trust wholly in your grace.

June 2, 2005
Anthony Foster

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From the personal weblog of Anthony Foster @http://anthonyfoster.com/blog/