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Jesus: Avatar or God?

• Greg Boyd

Our American culture seems to have grown more open to spiritual things in recent history. In general this openness is good—but there is also the danger of losing the uniqueness of what we believe as Christians—that Jesus IS God and not merely one of many ways that God is expressed in the world.

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Our American culture seems to have grown more open to spiritual things in recent history. Globalization has helped us gain access to other ways of living, thinking and making sense of the world around us. While there is much to gain from this, there is also the danger of losing the uniqueness of what we believe as Christians: that Jesus IS God and not merely one of many ways that God is expressed in the world.

Greg did a survey of many biblical texts that support the claim that Jesus is Lord in a way unlike any other claims to authority or deity. This is in stark contrast to faiths like the Jehovah’s Witnesses and others who see Jesus as one of many prophets or one of many spiritual leaders, or one of many “avatars” or manifestations of God in the world.

The texts Greg took us to focused on three ways of establishing Jesus as uniquely God from the Bible. Jesus was referred to as God. Jesus speaks with the authority of God, and Jesus was worshiped like God. If Jesus did any of these things but was not God, then he would be a fraud and a blasphemer. By doing these things, Jesus forces us to make a decision about his divinity. We can either accept it in faith and submit our lives to him or we can take offense as the audacity of a human being to make such claims and reject him as a fraud or a delusional egomaniac.

As Christians, its important that we all make ourselves familiar with what Jesus actually said and did so we can represent that truth to the world around us.

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Topics: Defense of Christian Faith, Evangelism


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Focus Scripture:

  • Luke 20:41-44

    Then Jesus said to them, “Why is it said that the Messiah is the son of David? David himself declares in the Book of Psalms:
    “ 'The Lord said to my Lord:
    “Sit at my right hand
    until I make your enemies
    a footstool for your feet.” ' [a]
    David calls him 'Lord.' How then can he be his son?”

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