Our Response to a Persistent Muslim
This is the third and final installment of responses to Bassam Zawadi regarding Jesus being the Divine Lord of the Sabbath (see 1, 2).
Not being able to refute the exegesis of the texts that we presented regarding the dual natures of the Lord Jesus, Zawadi resorts to posting the same links to specific anti-Trinitarian articles. Here, again, are the links which we have posted before which present the explicit biblical basis for the Trinity and the dual natures of Christ:
These links provide responses, either directly or indirectly, to the claims made by Zawadis sources.
Here is Zawadis response to Jesus claiming to be the Lord of the Sabbath and greater than the temple:
Secondly, when you read the context of the verse it does not have to necessarily imply that the term "son of man" is only specifically referring to Jesus. Let us read the passage...
23One Sabbath Jesus was going through the grainfields, and as his disciples walked along, they began to pick some heads of grain. 24The Pharisees said to him, "Look, why are they doing what is unlawful on the Sabbath?" 25He answered, "Have you never read what David did when he and his companions were hungry and in need? 26In the days of Abiathar the high priest, he entered the house of God and ate the consecrated bread, which is lawful only for priests to eat. And he also gave some to his companions." 27Then he said to them, "The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. 28So the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath."
Notice what verse 27 says...
The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath
The verse is said in a way which shows that man is basically in control of the Sabbath and not the Sabbath being in control of him. So then when Jesus continues to say that the son of man is lord even of the Sabbath the term "son of man" could possibly refer to all man. It could be understood this way by just simply reading the context.
Zawadi has apparently misunderstood (or distorted) the text since Jesus did not say that man is in control of the Sabbath, but rather that he as the Son of Man is. The Hebrew Bible expressly teaches that God instituted the Sabbath for his people to observe and clearly warned that anyone found working on that day would be put to death:
"Then the LORD said to Moses, Say to the Israelites, "You must observe my Sabbaths. This will be a sign between me and you for the generations to come, so you may know that I am the LORD, who makes you holy. Observe the Sabbath, because it is holy to you. Anyone who desecrates it must be put to death; whoever does any work on that day must be cut off from his people. For six days, work is to be done, but the seventh day is a Sabbath of rest, holy to the LORD. Whoever does any work on the Sabbath day must be put to death. The Israelites are to observe the Sabbath, celebrating it for the generations to come as a lasting covenant. It will be a sign between me and the Israelites forever, for in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day he abstained from work and rested."" Exodus 31:12-17
Pay special attention to the fact that God says here that the Sabbaths belong to him, not man, since these are his days.
"While the Israelites were in the desert, a man was found gathering wood on the Sabbath day. Those who found him gathering wood brought him to Moses and Aaron and the whole assembly, and they kept him in custody, because it was not clear what should be done to him. Then the LORD said to Moses, The man must die. The whole assembly must stone him outside the camp. So the assembly took him outside the camp and stoned him to death, as the LORD commanded Moses." Numbers 15:32-36
It is God, not man, who is in control of the Sabbath:
"There are six days when you may work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath of rest, a day of sacred assembly. You are not to do any work; wherever you live, it is a Sabbath to the LORD." Leviticus 23:3
It should be clear from the foregoing that Jesus point wasnt that man could do what he wanted on the Sabbath because he was its ruler. Rather, what Jesus was saying is that the Sabbath was not designed to enslave man but to benefit him by allowing him to refrain from work so as to focus his energies on worshiping God, who is the true source of rest and peace:
"The LORD replied, My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest." Exodus 33:14
"You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand." Psalm 16:11
"Surely you have granted him eternal blessings and made him glad with the joy of your presence." Psalm 21:6
And, as the Divine Son of Man, Christ had the complete authority to define what constituted resting on the Sabbath and what acts violated it.
Furthermore, to show that Jesus was identifying himself as the Son of Man all one needs to do is read the immediate context:
"When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, Son, your sins are forgiven. Now some teachers of the law were sitting there, thinking to themselves, Why does this fellow talk like that? He's blaspheming! Who can forgive sins but God alone? Immediately Jesus knew in his spirit that this was what they were thinking in their hearts, and he said to them, Why are you thinking these things? Which is easier: to say to the paralytic, "Your sins are forgiven," or to say, "Get up, take your mat and walk"? But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins . He said to the paralytic, I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home. He got up, took his mat and walked out in full view of them all. This amazed everyone and they praised God, saying, We have never seen anything like this!" Mark 2:5-12
Jesus as the Son of Man ascribes to himself the Divine prerogative of forgiving sins, showing that he was using the title to refer to himself as One who was both Divine and human and could therefore do things that no other human could do.
But I say unto you, That in this place is one greater than the temple--or rather, according to the reading which is best supported, "something greater." The argument stands thus: "The ordinary rules for the observance of the sabbath give way before the requirements of the temple; but there are rights here before which the temple itself must give way." Thus indirectly, but not the less decidedly, does our Lord put in His own claims to consideration in this question--claims to be presently put in even more nakedly. (Jamieson, Faussett, and Brown, Commentary on Matthew 12:6, Source)
But I say unto you, that in this place is one greater than the temple. The thought is: If priests in the service of the temple can break the letter of the law and be blameless, how much more can the disciples of him who is the Lord of the temple do so in his service and by his authority? (B. W. Johnson's Bible Commentary, Commentary on Matthew 12:6, Source)
Basically when Jesus said that "something greater than the temple is here" it could possibly mean the the specific emergency situation that the disciples were in justified the breaking of the Sabbath even more than did the requirements of the temple did. Basically if working in the temple justified breaking the Sabbath then the specific situation that the disciples were in especially since they were given permission by Jesus was more justifiable.
On the contrary, Jesus was not referring to the emergency situation of his disciples but to his being the One who could grant his disciples the right to do on the Sabbath what others viewed as being a violation of it. As one commentator accurately noted:
8. For the Son of man is Lord of the Sabbath day. Because the Sabbath is made for humanity, the Lord of humanity is the Lord of the Sabbath. Observe, is the Lord of the Sabbath. He does not, then, abolish it, but has the right to make any change in it, in the interest of mankind, that seems to him wise. Neither Moses, nor any other mortal, ever claimed to be Lord of the Sabbath. This is a declaration of Divinity. (B. W. Johnson's Bible Commentary; source)
Here is what Johnson wrote regarding Mark 2:28:
28. The Son of man is Lord also of the sabbath. This affirms the Divine nature of Jesus. None but the Divine is Lord of a divine institution. Since Christ is Lord of the Sabbath day, he has the right to modify it, to adapt it to the new dispensation, and to change the time of its observance from the last day of the week to the first, so as to make it the memorial of the beginning of the New Creation, instead of commemorating the rest from the first creation. (Source)
And since Zawadi is keen on quoting commentaries when it suits his purpose note carefully what these Bible expositors have to say regarding Matthew 12:6 and 8:
Verse 6. In this place is one greater than the temple.
Does not our Lord refer here to Malachi 3:1? Compare this with Hebrews 3:3. The Jews esteemed nothing greater than the temple, except that God who was worshipped in it. Christ, by asserting he was greater than the temple, asserts that he was God; and this he does, in still more direct terms, Matthew 12:8, The Son of man is Lord of the Sabbath-is Institutor and Governor of it. Compare this with Genesis 2:3, and see the notes there. (The Adam Clarke Commentary; source; bold and underline emphasis ours)
Another renowned exegete wrote:
Verse 6. One greater than the temple. Here he refers to himself, and to his own dignity and power. "I have power over the laws: I can grant to my disciples a dispensation from the Jewish laws. An act which I command or permit them to do, is therefore right." This proves that he was Divine. None but God can authorize men to do a thing contrary to the Divine laws. He refers them again to a passage he had before quoted, See Barnes "Matthew 9:13" showing that God preferred acts of righteousness, rather than a precise observance of a ceremonial law.
Mark adds, Mark 2:27 "the Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath." That is, the Sabbath was intended for the welfare of man; designed to promote his happiness; and not to produce misery, by harsh, unfeeling requirements. It is not to be so Interpreted as to produce suffering, by making the necessary supply of wants unlawful. Man was not made for the Sabbath. Man was created first, and then the Sabbath was appointed for his happiness, Genesis 2:1-3. His necessities, his real comforts and wants, are not to bend to that which was made for him. The laws are to be interpreted favourably to his real wants and comforts. This authorizes works only of real necessity, not of imaginary wants, or amusement, or common business, and worldly employments.
To crown all, Christ says that he was Lord of the Sabbath. He had a right to direct the manner of its observance--undoubted proof that he is Divine. (Albert Barnes Notes on the New Testament; source; bold and underline emphasis ours)
Bible expositor James Coffman says:
But I say unto you, that one greater than the temple is here.
Who but God Himself could be greater than the temple God ordained? Christ again made a statement fixing a gulf between himself and all ordinary men. This is a dramatic reference to the analogy between Christ and the temple, mentioned under the preceding verse, and makes it crystal clear that Jesus' disciples were totally within the law, and were, like the temple priests, GUILTLESS! Those expositors who assume the charge of the Pharisees to have been correct, making Jesus' justification of his disciples to be merely that "David did it too," appear totally to have misunderstood this portion of God's word. And then, to go forward and formulate a law authorizing in prescribed circumstances the breaking of God's laws, is to forget that Jesus said, "Whosoever, therefore, shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven" (Matthew 5:19). (James Burton Coffman's Commentaries: Whole Bible; source)
He also states in reference to Mark 2:28:
Lord of the sabbath ...
Wholly apart from the fact that no violation of God's sabbath law had happened, there was the additional truth that Jesus' disciples were exempted from God's true sabbath laws, due to their being in the service of Jesus Christ. Matthew's record emphasizes this. The Pharisees themselves "profaned the sabbath and were guiltless"; because the sabbath law did not apply to servants of the temple, who every sabbath day continually did things which in any other service would have been sabbath-violations. After pointing this out, Jesus said that "One greater than the temple is here," the same being a reference to himself. Therefore, the apostles in his service were even more entitled to exemption from the true sabbath restrictions than were the Pharisees who served in their temple, inasmuch as Christ was the greater temple (Matthew 12:5,6).
Furthermore, Jesus' lordship over the sabbath derived from his oneness and equality with God. He was in the process of abolishing the sabbath institution altogether. He would nail it to his cross, abolishing it totally and completely; and his words here were a prophecy of that very thing. (source)
Finally, the late great Matthew Henry claimed:
[1.] In this place is one greater than the temple, Matthew 12:6. If the temple-service would justify what the priests did in their ministration, the service of Christ would much more justify the disciples in what they did in their attendance upon him. The Jews had an extreme veneration for the temple: it sanctified the gold; Stephen was accused for blaspheming that holy place (Acts 6:13); but Christ, in a corn-field, was greater than the temple, for in him dwelt not the presence of God symbolically, but all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. Note, If whatever we do, we do it in the name of Christ, and as unto him, it shall be graciously accepted of God, however it may be censured and cavilled at by men [3.] The Son of man is Lord even of the sabbath day, Matthew 12:8. That law, as all the rest, is put into the hand of Christ, to be altered, enforced, or dispensed with, as he sees good. It was by the Son that God made the world, and by him he instituted the sabbath in innocency; by him he gave the ten commandments at mount Sinai, and as Mediator he is entrusted with the institution of ordinances, and to make what changes he thought fit; and particularly, as being Lord of the sabbath, he was authorized to make such an alteration of that day, as that it should become the Lord's day, the Lord Christ's day. And if Christ be the Lord of the sabbath, it is fit the day and all the work of it should be dedicated to him. By virtue of this power Christ here enacts, that works of necessity, if they be really such, and not a pretended and self-created necessity, are lawful on the sabbath day; and this explication of the law plainly shows that it was to be perpetual. Exceptio firmat regulam--The exception confirms the rule. (Matthew Henry Complete Commentary on the Whole Bible; source)
Moreover, the immediate context provides additional support that Jesus was referring to himself as being greater than the temple since he says something similar in reference to Jonah and Solomon:
"The men of Nineveh will rise up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for they repented at the preaching of Jonah, and behold, something greater than Jonah is here. The queen of the South will rise up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon, and behold, something greater than Solomon is here." Matthew 12:41-42
It is clear that Jesus was claiming to be greater than both Jonah and Solomon, which makes it all the more obvious that he was referring to himself as that which was greater than the temple.
And here, again, are the commentators beginning with Adam Clarke:
A greater than Jonas is here.
πλειον for τιπλειον, something more. The evidence offered by Jonah sufficed to convince and lead the Ninevites to repentance; but here was more evidence, and a greater person; and yet so obstinate are the Jews that all is ineffectual. 1. Christ, who preached to the Jews, was infinitely greater than Jonah, in his nature, person, and mission. 2. Jonah preached repentance in Nineveh only forty days, and Christ preached among the Jews for several years. 3. Jonah wrought no miracles to authorize his preaching; but Christ wrought miracles every day, in every place where he went, and of every kind. And 4. Notwithstanding all this, the people of Judea did not repent, though the people of Nineveh did. (The Adam Clarke Commentary; source; bold and underline emphasis ours)
James B. Coffman:
Christ's being greater than Jonah is seen in the contrast between the messages, one secular, the other spiritual; between the messengers, one true, the other untrue; and between the miracles that certified each, one disgorged by a sea-monster, the other raised from the dead. See also Matt. 8:25 Christ as "greater than Solomon" was expounded by James H. Childress as follows: (1) Christ was greater in his birth, (2) his wisdom, (3) his temple, (4) his throne, (5) his prayers, (6) in his mansions, and (7) in the sacrifice Christ offered. As one example, Solomon offered at the dedication of the temple "twenty-two thousand oxen, and a hundred twenty thousand sheep" (2 Chronicles 7:5). Christ offered his own blood within the holiest place of all for the sins of all men (Hebrews 9:14). (James Burton Coffman's Commentaries: Whole Bible; source)
and behold, a greater than Jonas is here;
meaning himself, who was greater in person, office, doctrine, miracles, life, obedience, sufferings, death, and resurrection from the dead. The Ninevites, though a Heathenish people, having but forty days allowed them to repent in, upon Jonas's preaching, repented immediately; whereas the Jews, though God's: professing people, and having forty years, from Christ's resurrection, allowed them to repent in, yet did not at all; and though the repentance of the Ninevites was but an external one, in dust and ashes, yet it was what secured them from temporal ruin; as the Jews would have been saved from the destruction that came upon their temple, city, and nation, had they repented but as they did. (Gills Exposition of the Bible; source; underline emphasis ours)
And behold, a greater than Solomon is here;
one that was infinitely greater than Solomon was, in everything; so particularly in that, in which he excelled others, and on the account of which the queen of the south came unto him, namely, wisdom: for he is the wisdom of God, in whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. The Jews themselves own, that the king, meaning the Messiah, that shall be raised up of the seed of David, (hmlvm rty hyhy hmkx leb), "shall be a greater master of wisdom", or "wiser than Solomon". Now what an aggravation of the condemnation of the Jews will this be another day, that a Gentile woman, living in a foreign and distant land, should, upon the fame of the wisdom of Solomon, leave her own kingdom and country, and come to Jerusalem, to hear his wise discourses about things natural, civil, and moral; and yet the Jews, who had a greater than Solomon in the midst of them, and had no need to take much pains to come to the sight and hearing of him, yet rejected him as the Messiah, blasphemed his miracles, and despised his ministry; though it was concerned about things of a spiritual and evangelic nature, and the eternal welfare of immortal souls. (Gills Exposition of the Bible; source; underline emphasis ours)
As a generation that would be condemned by the men of Nineveh, whose repenting at the preaching of Jonas would rise up in judgment against them, Matthew 12:41. Christ's resurrection will be the sign of the prophet Jonas to them: but it will not have so happy an effect upon them, as that of Jonas had upon the Ninevites, for they were by it brought to such a repentance as prevented their ruin; but the Jews will be hardened in an unbelief that shall hasten their ruin; and in the day of judgment, the repentance of the Ninevites will be mentioned as an aggravation of the sin, and consequently the condemnation of those to whom Christ preached then, and of those to whom Christ is preached now; for this reason, because Christ is greater than Jonah. [1.] Jonah was but a man, subject to like passions, to like sinful passions, as we are; but Christ is the Son of God. [2.] Jonah was a stranger in Nineveh, he came among the strangers that were prejudiced against his country; but Christ came to his own, when he preached to the Jews, and much more when he is preached among professing Christians, that are called by his name. [3.] Jonah preached but one short sermon, and that with no great solemnity, but as he passed along the streets; Christ renews his calls, sat and taught, taught in the synagogues. [4.] Jonah preached nothing but wrath and ruin within forty days, gave no instructions, directions, or encouragements, to repent: but Christ, besides the warning given us of our danger, has shown wherein we must repent, and assured us of acceptance upon our repentance, because the kingdom of heaven is at hand. [5.] Jonah wrought no miracle to confirm his doctrine, showed no good will to the Ninevites; but Christ wrought abundance of miracles, and all miracles of mercy: yet the Ninevites repented at the preaching of Jonas, but the Jews were not wrought upon by Christ's preaching. Note, The goodness of some, who have less helps and advantages for their souls, will aggravate the badness of those who have much greater. Those who by the twilight discover the things that belong to their peace, will shame those who grope at noon-day.
(2.) As a generation that would be condemned by the queen of the south, the queen of Sheba, Matthew 12:42. The Ninevites would shame them for not repenting, the queen of Sheba for not believing in Christ. She came from a far country to hear the wisdom of Solomon; yet people will not be persuaded to come and hear the wisdom of Christ, though he is in every thing greater than Solomon. [1.] The queen of Sheba had no invitation to come to Solomon, nor any promise of being welcome; but we are invited to Christ, to sit at his feet and hear his word. [2.] Solomon was but a wise man, but Christ is wisdom itself, in whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom. [3.] The queen of Sheba had many difficulties to break through; she was a woman, unfit for travel, the journey long and perilous; she was a queen, and what would become of her own country in her absence? We have no such cares to hinder us. [4.] She could not be sure that it would be worth her while to go so far on this errand; fame uses to flatter men, and perhaps she might have in her own country or court wise men sufficient to instruct her; yet, having heard of Solomon's fame, she would see him; but we come not to Christ upon such uncertainties. [5.] She came from the uttermost parts of the earth, but we have Christ among us, and his word nigh us: Behold he stands at the door, and knocks. [6.] It should seem the wisdom the queen of Sheba came for was only philosophy and politics; but the wisdom that is to be had with Christ is wisdom to salvation. [7.] She could only hear Solomon's wisdom; he could not give her wisdom: but Christ will give wisdom to those who come to him; nay, he will himself be made of God to them Wisdom; so that, upon all these accounts, if we do not hear the wisdom of Christ, the forwardness of the queen of Sheba to come and hear the wisdom of Solomon will rise up in judgment against us and condemn us; for Jesus Christ is greater than Solomon. (Matthew Henry Complete Commentary on the Whole Bible; source)
What makes this so ironic is that Zawadi basically agrees with our exegesis even though he has been trying to refute it:
Jesus was not here to come and take control over the Law. Jesus came to explain the Law better to the Jews. He even gives the example of how David in the past broke the Sabbath because of necessity and this was the very reason why Jesus also allowed the disciples to break it. THAT IS ALL. Jesus did not come and break the Sabbath completely. He came to explain to them what the true meaning of the Sabbath was. Upholding the Sabbath is one of the ten commandments. Now Jesus didn't come to break the commandments, which he asked his people to uphold (John 14:15). He came to explain it to them properly.(Underline emphasis ours)
How ironic that Zawadi cant see the implication of his own words, since they actually prove the point that Christ, as the Divine Son of Man, could permit his followers to do what they did because of his having the Sovereign authority to define what was and what wasnt permissible on the Sabbath.
Moreover, Davids example doesnt prove that men could break the Sabbath but that God didnt intend the Sabbath to override the needs of his servants. Jesus was saying that it is lawful to do work on the Sabbath provided that its purpose is to save and preserve life, just as Davids example proves. Since David and his men hadnt eaten what they did wasnt a violation of Gods command, but served to exemplify the true meaning and purpose of the Sabbath.
Again, because Jesus is the Divine Son he could explain the real meaning of Sabbath and correct all the gross misinterpretations of what it meant to work or not to work on that holy day.
Finally, John 14:15 doesnt refer to the disciples having to observe the Law of Moses, but to obeying Jesus commands and explanation of that Law:
"If you love me, you will obey what I command Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him. Then Judas (not Judas Iscariot) said, But, Lord, why do you intend to show yourself to us and not to the world? Jesus replied, If anyone loves me, he will obey my teaching. My Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him. He who does not love me will not obey my teaching. These words you hear are not my own; they belong to the Father who sent me." John 14:15, 21-24
We now turn our attention to Zawadis straw man:
So Jesus did not go around claiming he was greater than God. How could he if he said that the Father is greater than him (John 14:28)? So at the end of the day there is someone greater than Jesus and therefore he is not God. This verse put forth by Sam proves nothing.
It is vital that we correct Zawadis misunderstanding and/or deliberate distortion of the argument being made. Jesus being greater than the temple doesnt make him greater than God, but rather proves that he is God. Only God is greater than his own temple which means that for Jesus to be greater than the temple he must be God, not greater than God.
Moreover, citing John 14:28 does absolutely nothing to refute the fact that Jesus expressly affirmed his absolute Deity here. Zawadi erroneously assumes (despite being aware that this point has been thoroughly addressed) that there is only one sense in which the Father could be greater than the Son, specifically in terms of his nature and Being. Zawadi has presumed that this statement proves that Jesus is an inferior Being to the Father, whereas a careful examination of the immediate context conclusively shows that Jesus meaning wasnt that the Father was superior in essence. Christ was saying that at that point in time the Father happened to be greater than him in rank and honor due to the status he assumed while on earth, having become a humble servant of God. For more on this issue please read the following article: http://answering-islam.org/Shamoun/q_father_greater.htm
Zawadi proceeds with more of his fallacious arguments:
Calling God your own Father does not make you equal to God. See this article.http://wings.buffalo.edu/sa/muslim/library/jesus-say/ch184.108.40.206.html
Zawadi links to a chapter from Mishaal Ibn Abdullah al-Kadhis book, "What Did Jesus Really Say?", a work has been responded to here. And this specific article is addressed here: http://answering-islam.org/Responses/Al-Kadhi/r01.2.3.03.html
Al-Kadhi quotes a text where others are called sons of God. A couple of responses to this erroneous argumentation are necessary. First, Zawadi and al-Kadhi do not realize that these references actually prove that the God of the Holy Bible is not the god preached by Muhammad and proclaimed in the Quran. The Quran says that Allah isnt a father and has no children and that his relationship to believers is one of master and slave:
And they say: "The Most Beneficent (Allah) has begotten a son (or offspring or children) [as the Jews say: Uzair (Ezra) is the son of Allah, and the Christians say that He has begotten a son [Iesa (Christ)], and the pagan Arabs say that He has begotten daughters (angels, etc.)]." Indeed you have brought forth (said) a terrible evil thing. Whereby the heavens are almost torn, and the earth is split asunder, and the mountains fall in ruins, That they ascribe a son (or offspring or children) to the Most Beneficent (Allah). But it is not suitable for (the Majesty of) the Most Beneficent (Allah) that He should beget a son (or offspring or children). There is none in the heavens and the earth but comes unto the Most Beneficent (Allah) as a slave. S. 19:88-93 Hilali-Khan
Yet Gods spiritual Fatherhood is an essential part of his eternal nature according to the Holy Bible:
"For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom his whole family in heaven and on earth derives its name." Ephesians 3:14-15
Second, Jesus is not merely a son of God like the others, but the one and only Son of his kind, the unique Son (the literal meaning of the Greek word monogenes):
"The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the unique Son, who came from the Father (doxan hos monogenous para patros), full of grace and truth." John 1:14
As the unique Son of God Christ is the only Person who can perfectly reveal God to man due to his intimate communion and closeness to the Father:
"All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows who the Son is except the Father, and no one knows who the Father is except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him." Luke 10:22
"No one has ever seen God, but the unique Son, God (monogenes theos), who is in the Fathers bosom, has made him known." John 1:18
Moreover, Jesus Sonship is unique because he, unlike the others, came forth from the Father in heaven to save mankind and to grant them the right of adoption:
"He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God." John 1:10-13
"For God so loved the world that he gave his unique Son (ton huion ton monogenee), that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's unique Son (tou monogenous huiou tou theou)." John 3:16-18
"Then Jesus declared, I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty. But as I told you, you have seen me and still you do not believe. All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away. For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me. And this is the will of him who sent me, that I shall lose none of all that he has given me, but raise them up at the last day. For my Father's will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. At this the Jews began to grumble about him because he said, I am the bread that came down from heaven. They said, Is this not Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How can he now say, "I came down from heaven"?" John 6:35-42
"But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, Abba! Father! So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God." Galatians 4:4-7
"This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his unique Son (ton huion autou ton monogenee) into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world." 1 John 4:9-10, 14
Finally, being Gods unique Son he is also the Agent and Heir of creation:
"For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together." Colossians 1:13-17
"In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the universe. The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven. Hebrews 1:1-3
In light of the foregoing, it is evident that both Zawadi and al-Kadhi are guilty of a false analogy, comparing apples with oranges, since they erroneously assume that Jesus is a son in the same sense as the rest, all the while ignoring the overwhelming data which refutes such an assertion.
We now come to the conclusion of our rebuttals and must say that Zawadi wasnt able to refute the fact that Jesus did indeed claim to be God when he identified himself as the Lord of the Sabbath and as the One who was greater than Gods temple.
In the service of Jesus Christ, the Divine Son of Man and the immortal Lord of the Sabbath, forever and ever. Amen. Come risen Lord, come. We will always love you and, by your sovereign grace, continue to be your slaves forever.
Rebuttals to Answering-Christianity
Articles by Sam Shamoun
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