UPDATED 05 MAY, 2006
Does your ministry believe that Yeshua the Messiah is Divine, meaning God in the flesh?
Yes, we absolutely believe that Yeshua the Messiah is Divine, and are aware of the fact that this foundational truth is being denied by some in the Messianic community. We seldom employ the word “heresy” in regard to somebody’s beliefs or teachings, but are of the firm position that those who deny the Messiah’s Divinity are such heretics. There are those who believe that Yeshua was just a human man, and He had some kind of special relationship with God and was quite possibly even empowered by God, but never God in the flesh. There are those who are confused and do not know what to believe. While we cannot fully understand our Creator, nor can we fully understand His ways as mortal human beings, the Scriptures do tell us some important things about the Lord.
In Isaiah 43:3a, He tells us, “For I am the LORD your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.” He follows up this statement with, “I, even I, am the LORD, and there is no savior besides Me” (Isaiah 43:11). He challenges the “fugitives of the nations” (Isaiah 45:20), “I will feed your oppressors with their own flesh, and they will become drunk with their own blood as with sweet wine; and all flesh will know that I, the LORD, am your Savior and your Redeemer, the Mighty One of Jacob” (Isaiah 49:26). These verses from the Tanach (Old Testament) attest to the fact that the Lord, God Himself, is our only Savior and Redeemer. The process of being redeemed and being saved are unmistakenly connected together, and they are directly related to our Creator Himself. The key in properly dealing with the Divinity of Messiah issue is directly related to how we become saved.
The Apostolic Scriptures (New Testament) tell us some things about our salvation as well. The angels proclaimed at Yeshua’s birth, “for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Messiah the Lord” (Luke 2:11). The Apostle Paul writes in Philippians 3:20, “For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Yeshua the Messiah.” Paul also writes about “the redemption which is in Messiah Yeshua” (Romans 3:24). We are told, “In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace” (Ephesians 1:7). Yeshua the Messiah is the One “in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins” (Colossians 1:14). Four times in the epistle of 2 Peter, Yeshua is called “our Lord and Savior” (1:11; 2:20; 3:2, 18). This seems to be a contradiction. If the LORD God is our only Savior and Redeemer, then why is Yeshua referred to as the One saving us and redeeming us? Is not this something that can be done by only God alone?
The truth of the matter is that one being saved, forgiven of his or her sins, and being spiritually regenerated, are all directly connected to whether or not Yeshua the Messiah is Divine. Consider the Scriptures from the Tanach that clearly tell us that God Himself is our only Savior and Redeemer. Consider the Scriptures which tell us that Yeshua is only the One in whom we have salvation and redemption. What is being communicated here? Is there a Divine connection between the Father and Son? Yes!
For a further discussion of these issues, consult the editor’s article “Answering the ‘Frequently Avoided Questions’ About the Divinity of Yeshua.”