We are talking about the arguments Muslim use against Christianity. One of the most clear teachings of the Bible is that God took on flesh and dwelt among us. He laid down His life as the Lamb of God, as the perfect atonement for man’s sin. He did this in the person of Jesus Christ.
The Bible teaches that God is one God, yet He is three persons. One of Islam’s greatest attacks on Christianity is the attack on the Trinity and the deity of Christ. Muslims not only deny Christ’s deity, they also deny that God is the Father. It is the only religion in the world that does this. There are those, like the Jehovah Witnesses, who deny the deity of Jesus Christ, but they do accept God being a Father. This is why I call Islam the Antichrist Religion. It is the only religion that fits with the five times the word “antichrist” is used in the Bible. All of them are in First and Second John.
Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son. (1 John 2:22)
The Antichrist Religion not only denies the deity of Christ, it also denies the Father.
Let’s get back into the charges against the deity of Christ we started yesterday.
Muslims are starting to get a little more sophisticated in their arguments. They are learning from those who deny the deity of Christ in other religions. Sadly, most Christians don’t know how to answer these attacks. If the Christians don’t have the answers, Muslim believe they have the winning arguments and that their religion is superior.
Yesterday I tried to cover more ground that I had time to explain well. Today I want to break it down a little better.
God is a Spirit and Jesus had a body and not a Spirit.
They ask, how can Jesus be God if God is a spirit and Jesus had a physical body? They quote the following passages:
God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth. (John 4:24)
Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have. And when he had thus spoken, he shewed them his hands and his feet. And while they yet believed not for joy, and wondered, he said unto them, Have ye here any meat? And they gave him a piece of a broiled fish, and of an honeycomb. (Luke 24:39-42)
It is true that God is a spirit, and it is also true that God took on flesh. They have a one dimensional view of God.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. (Isaiah 55:9)
We must look at the context of Luke 24 to properly understand it. When Jesus showed up in the room, the disciples thought He was a spirit because He just appeared in the middle of them.
And as they thus spake, Jesus himself stood in the midst of them, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you. But they were terrified and affrighted, and supposed that they had seen a spirit. (Luke 24:36-37)
We get another picture of this in the Gospel of John.
Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you. (John 20:19)
The disciples had closed themselves up in a room for fear of the Jews. This helps understand why they thought what they thought in Luke. The door was shut, so how did Jesus get in? They thought He was a spirit because He didn’t come through the door.
How does as man that has flesh and blood just appear in the room unless he has the supernatural ability to transcend the physical barriers that you and I are subject to? Jesus, being flesh and blood which they could touch, and even eating with them, was able to pass through walls of that room. He was able to do this because He is more than just a man. He is not bound to the physical boundaries that we are bound to.
When Muslims want to quote our Scriptures to us, we should take it as an opportunity get them into the Bible.
So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. (Romans 10:17)
Remember, Muslims are supposed to believe in the Gospels. The Qur’an teaches that they are from their god and were given to Jesus.
They don’t know what the Gospel is. They don’t know it is the good news that Christ died for our sins, but they do, or are at least supposed to, believe that Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John are revelations from God. The Gospel message has three very important parts; God became flesh and dwelt among us in Jesus Christ, He offered Himself as a sacrifice for the sins of mankind on Calvary’s tree, and He rose again the third day for our justification. All those who trust in the Gospel, and accept it as being the full payment for their sins, without any work or merit on their part, they will be saved. Along with our salvation, we have the promise of our own resurrection to spend eternity with Him in glory.
When they try to use our Scriptures to prove our error, it is an opportunity to show them what the Bible really says and to show them the fullness of the Gospel. Our goal is not to win an argument, but to bring them to Christ for salvation.
Since the Bible teaches the doctrine of the Trinity, we have no problem with God being a spirit, and still having flesh and blood.
God is Greater than Jesus since Jesus was a mere man
Muslims will use the two following verses to try and show that Jesus is not God because God is greater than He is.
Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I. (John 14:28)
My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand. (John 10:29)
They say that Jesus said God was greater than Him, why didn’t He say they are equal if His is God?
Yesterday we quoted Philippians 2:6-8:
Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. (Philippians 2:6-8)
Here we learn that Jesus did not think it was robbery to be equal with God, but took on the form of a servant. He voluntarily submitted Himself to the Father for the time He was on earth.
Muslims willfully misunderstand the ‘roles’ each member of the Trinity plays. Their role exhibits to man the perfect relationship between the Father and a Son. The Father is the Head showing leadership, guidance, wisdom, and love to his Son. The Son’s role perfectly illustrates obedience, love, and service to the Father.
It is not an issue of who is superior or inferior. It is like man and woman, both are created equal in their essence and substance, but there is an order of authority.
But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God. (1 Corinthians 11:3)
There woman is called the weaker vessel and she is to submit to her husband. This does not mean she is inferior to man. It simply means that God has established an order of authority between the man and the woman. There is a difference in the God ordained roles of men and women, but both are equal. God illustrates this by showing Christ to be subject to the headship of God the Father while, in essence, they are equal.
If the issue of submission was to say that one is superior to the other, we would be saying that, in the Trinity, the Father is superior to the Son. The Bible clearly teaches that all three members of the Trinity are co-equal because the three are one.
For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. (1 John 5:7)
The fact that Jesus said that the Father is greater than He, and that the Father is greater than all, is not about superiority or inferiority, it is about the role of each party the the carrying out of the mission of redemption.
We will continue with the arguments against the Muslim attack on the deity of Christ tomorrow.