The Lord Jesus Christ –

The Son of God who is Equal with the Father in Essence

Sam Shamoun

According to the blessed Apostle Paul, the Lord Jesus existed in the very nature of God who chose not to cling to his equality with God (the Father) but voluntarily set aside his Divine privileges in order to assume the role of a servant by becoming a man:

"Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality (isa) with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death — even death on a cross!" Philippians 2:5-8

Here is another version which brings out the meaning of the inspired Greek text more clearly:

"Let this same attitude and purpose and [humble] mind be in you which was in Christ Jesus: [Let Him be your example in humility:] Who, although being essentially one with God and in the form of God [possessing the fullness of the attributes which make God God], did not think this equality with God was a thing to be eagerly grasped or retained, But stripped Himself [of all privileges and rightful dignity], so as to assume the guise of a servant (slave), in that He became like men and was born a human being. And after He had appeared in human form, He abased and humbled Himself [still further] and carried His obedience to the extreme of death, even the death of the cross!" The Amplified Bible

The late noted Bible expositor William Barclay explains how this hymn serves as a rather explicit witness to the full Deity of the Lord Jesus:

"… It is not doubtful that Paul thought of Jesus Christ in terms of God. He says of Jesus that he was in the form of God. (Phil. 2:6). He then goes on to say that Jesus was found in human form (Phil. 2:8, RSV), where the AV renders that he was found in fashion as a man. The RSV somewhat misleadingly translates two Greek words by the English word form, whereas the AV correctly distinguishes between them. In the first instance the word is morphe, which means THE UNCHANGING AND UNCHANGEABLE ESSENTIAL NATURE of a thing; the second word is schema, which means the changing and altering external form of a person or a thing. For instance, a man has always the unchanging morphe of manhood; that is what he essentially is; but he will have different schemata, different outward forms, in babyhood, childhood, youth, maturity and old age. A tulip, a rose, a chrysanthemum, a marigold, a daffodil, a delphinium all have the same morphe, the same essential nature, for they are all flowers; but they have very different outward schemata, outward forms. Paul says that Jesus was in the morphe of God; that is to say, the essential nature of Jesus IS THE SAME AS THE ESSENTIAL NATURE OF GOD; but he says that Jesus was found in the schema of a man; that is to say, he temporarily took the form of manhood upon him. The NEB renders the Greek well here. In translating the word morphe it renders the passage: 'The divine nature was his from the first.' In translating the word schema it says that he was 'revealed in human shape.' This passage leaves us IN NO DOUBT that Paul believed that the nature of Jesus is the nature of God." (Barclay, Jesus As They Saw Him [Eerdmans Publishing Company; Grand Rapids MI, rpt. 1998], pp. 27-28; bold and capital emphasis ours)

In this article we would like to quote the words of the Lord Jesus in order to demonstrate that what Paul taught or recited (since some believe that Philippians 2:5-11 is an early Christian hymn which scholars call the Carmen Christi) perfectly agrees with the teachings of Christ himself concerning his own Person and role.

Christ’s Role as the Father’s Servant

In the Gospels one will find Jesus affirming his role as a servant, that he was sent by God to accomplish his will by serving others:

"When the ten heard about this, they became indignant with James and John. Jesus called them together and said, ‘You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.’" Mark 10:41-45

"Also a dispute arose among them as to which of them was considered to be greatest. Jesus said to them, ‘The kings of the Gentiles lord it over them; and those who exercise authority over them call themselves Benefactors. But you are not to be like that. Instead, the greatest among you should be like the youngest, and the one who rules like the one who serves. For who is greater, the one who is at the table or the one who serves? Is it not the one who is at the table? But I am among you as one who serves.’" Luke 22:24-27

"It was just before the Passover Feast. Jesus knew that the time had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he now showed them the full extent of his love. The evening meal was being served, and the devil had already prompted Judas Iscariot, son of Simon, to betray Jesus. Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God; so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples' feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him. He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, ‘Lord, are you going to wash my feet?’ Jesus replied, ‘You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.’ ‘No,’ said Peter, ‘you shall never wash my feet.’ Jesus answered, ‘Unless I wash you, you have no part with me.’ ‘Then, Lord,’ Simon Peter replied, ‘not just my feet but my hands and my head as well!’ Jesus answered, ‘A person who has had a bath needs only to wash his feet; his whole body is clean. And you are clean, though not every one of you.’ For he knew who was going to betray him, and that was why he said not every one was clean. When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. ‘Do you understand what I have done for you?’ he asked them. ‘You call me "Teacher" and "Lord," and rightly so, for that is what I am. Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another's feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. I tell you the truth, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.’" John 13:1-17

Christ – Consubstantial with the Father

Christ further taught that he is equal with the Father in nature and always works in perfect union with him, being able to do whatever the Father does:

"After these things there was a feast of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. Now there is in Jerusalem by the sheep gate a pool, which is called in Hebrew Bethesda, having five porticoes. In these lay a multitude of those who were sick, blind, lame, and withered… A man was there who had been ill for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he had already been a long time in that condition, He said to him, ‘Do you wish to get well?’ The sick man answered Him, ‘Sir, I have no man to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up, but while I am coming, another steps down before me.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Get up, pick up your pallet and walk.’ Immediately the man became well, and picked up his pallet and began to walk. Now it was the Sabbath on that day. So the Jews were saying to the man who was cured, ‘It is the Sabbath, and it is not permissible for you to carry your pallet.’ But he answered them, ‘He who made me well was the one who said to me, "Pick up your pallet and walk."’ They asked him, ‘Who is the man who said to you, "Pick up your pallet and walk"?’ But the man who was healed did not know who it was, for Jesus had slipped away while there was a crowd in that place. Afterward Jesus found him in the temple and said to him, ‘Behold, you have become well; do not sin anymore, so that nothing worse happens to you.’ The man went away, and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had made him well. For this reason the Jews were persecuting Jesus, because He was doing these things on the Sabbath. But He answered them, ‘My Father is working until now, and I Myself am working.’ For this reason therefore the Jews were seeking all the more to kill Him, because He not only was breaking the Sabbath, but also was calling God His own Father, making Himself equal (ison) with God." John 5:1-3, 5-18

Here, John uses the same word that Paul used in Philippians to denote Jesus’ equality with God, namely the Greek adjective isos, thereby demonstrating that both these inspired authors taught and believed the same thing concerning the nature and work of Christ

The reason why the Jews thought that Jesus was claiming equality with God is because of his bold assertion that he has the same divine right to work on the Sabbath as his Father does, being his Son. Jesus was pretty much saying that, as God’s Son, he could do things which were considered unlawful on this sacred day since he is not bound by the laws and regulations of the Sabbath in the same way that God isn’t bound by them.

Christ was pretty much claiming to be the Lord of the Sabbath, the One who has authority to determine what kind of work can and cannot be done on this holy day. In his own words,

"I tell you, something greater than the temple is here. And if you had known what this means, ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice,’ you would not have condemned the guiltless. For the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath." Matthew 12:6-8; cf. Mark 2:28, Luke 6:5

Not only is Jesus the Sabbath’s Lord he is also greater than the very temple which housed the glory and presence of God himself!

"And he who swears by the temple swears by it and by the one who dwells in it." Mathew 23:21

Jesus went on to confirm the Jews’ suspicion that he was in fact claiming to be equal with God:

"So Jesus said to them, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of his own accord, but only what he sees the Father doing. For WHATEVER the Father does, THAT THE SON DOES LIKEWISE. For the Father loves the Son and shows him all that he himself is doing. And greater works than these will he show him, so that you may marvel. For as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, SO ALSO THE SON GIVES LIFE TO WHOM HE WILL.’" John 5:19-21

Here, Jesus explains what he means that he can do nothing on his own initiative. He cannot act independently from the Father since he is always working in perfect union with him. Yet because Jesus is God in essence he is capable of doing everything that the Father himself does, such as giving life to whomever he desires. Since the Father does what only God can do, for Christ to say he can do everything that the Father does means that Jesus is (or at least is claiming to be) God Almighty!

Even the claim that he can do nothing on his own is an astonishing statement in itself. Finite, imperfect creatures can never make such a claim since it is rather obvious that we humans do a lot of things that God wouldn’t do nor desires for us to do, i.e. lying, stealing, murder etc. Nor can any creature say he can only do whatever God does.

As if this wasn’t amazing enough, Jesus says that he will personally resurrect the dead, both spiritually and physically, by the power of his voice!

"Truly, truly, I say to you, an hour is coming, and is now here, when the dead will hear THE VOICE OF THE SON OF GOD, and those who hear will live. For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted THE SON ALSO TO HAVE LIFE IN HIMSELF… Do not marvel at this, for an hour is coming when all who are in the graves will hear HIS VOICE and come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment." John 5:28-29

Nor is the only time where Christ says that he will resurrect the dead:

"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.’" John 6:35-40

"Jesus said to her, ‘Your brother will rise again.’ Martha answered, ‘I know he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.’ Jesus said to her, ‘I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?’ ‘Yes, Lord,’ she told him, ‘I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, who was to come into the world.’ … So they took away the stone. Then Jesus looked up and said, ‘Father, I thank you that you have heard me. I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here, that they may believe that you sent me.’ When he had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice, ‘Lazarus, come out!" The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face. Jesus said to them, ‘Take off the grave clothes and let him go.’" John 11:23-27, 41-44

Here is the other text where the Lord Jesus claims to be equal with the Father:

"My sheep listen to MY VOICE; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father's hand. I and the Father are one (ego kai ho pater hen esmen).’" John 10:27-30

By using both the neuter form of heis along with the plural verb form of eimi (esmen, lit. "we are") John dispels any attempt of trying to turn the Father and the Son into a single Person. John’s use of hen, instead of heis, clearly demonstrates that their unity is not in terms of Personhood but in respect to their essence, e.g. they are not the same Person but two distinct Persons that share the same essence fully and equally.

Jesus further asserts that he is one with the Father right after stating that the latter is greater than all, which in the context refers to those who would try to pluck believers from the Father’s all-powerful hand.

To more fully appreciate the implications of these statements keep in mind that Jesus’ point is that there is no person who can prevent God from protecting his flock since there is no being that is as powerful as God who can thereby thwart his purposes in saving his sheep. Yet the Lord Jesus places himself in a unique category since he actually believes that he is his Father’s equal, being one with him in ability and power which is completely unlike anyone else!

After all, Christ says that he is one with the Father in the context of preserving and giving believers eternal life, all of which are Divine functions according to the Hebrew Scriptures.

"See now that I myself am He! There is no god besides me. I put to death and I bring to life, I have wounded and I will heal, and no one can deliver out of my hand." Deuteronomy 32:39

"There is no one holy like the LORD; there is no one besides you; there is no Rock like our God… The LORD brings death and makes alive; he brings down to the grave and raises up." 1 Samuel 2:2, 6

"For he is our God, and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand. Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts, as at Meribah, as on the day at Massah in the wilderness," Psalm 95:7-8 ESV

"Yes, and from ancient days I am he. No one can deliver out of my hand. When I act, who can reverse it?" Isaiah 43:13

Amazingly, Jesus ascribes to his own Person everything which these Scriptures attribute to Yahweh, such as:

Moreover, the OT says that there is no person who can perform works in the same way that Yahweh does:

"Among the gods there is none like you, O Lord; no deeds can compare with yours. All the nations you have made will come and worship before you, O Lord; they will bring glory to your name. For you are great and do marvelous deeds; you alone are God." Psalm 86:8

"For who in the skies above can compare with the LORD? Who is like the LORD among the heavenly beings? In the council of the holy ones God is greatly feared; he is more awesome than all who surround him. O LORD God Almighty, who is like you? You are mighty, O LORD, and your faithfulness surrounds you." Psalm 89:6-8

And yet in both John 5 and 10 Jesus claims to be able to do whatever the Father does and which the OT expressly says that only Yahweh can do! The reason why he can? Because he is Yahweh God the Son. To put this in the form of a syllogism:

  1. No one can do the works that God performs, especially in the manner in which Yahweh performs them.
  2. Jesus does whatever work can God do, and performs such works in exactly the same way.
  3. Therefore, Jesus is Yahweh God (but not the Father or the Holy Spirit).

Evangelical NT scholar Murray J. Harris helps put this in perspective:

"Similarly, when Jesus declared ‘I and the Father are one’ (John 10:30), he was not claiming that he and the Father were personally identical, for John uses the neuter for ‘one’ (hen), not the masculine (heis). Nor is Jesus simply affirming a unity of will or purpose or action between him and his Father, so what the Father wishes, he also wishes and performs. In the context Jesus has just declared that no person will be able to snatch his sheep out of his hand (10:28) or out of his Father's hand (10:29). Such equality of divine power points to unity of divine essence: ‘I and the Father are one.’" (Murray J. Harris, 3 Crucial Questions about Jesus [Baker Books, Grand Rapids, MI 1994], Chapter 3: Is Jesus God?, fn. 14, p. 119; bold and underline emphasis ours)

No wonder the Jews thought that Jesus was blaspheming. They could clearly see that Christ was claiming to be God for believing that he could do things that only Yahweh could do and for actually thinking that he was just as powerful as the Father!

Christ – The Son who receives equal honors with the Father

In light of Christ’s Divine claims it should not come as a surprise that he further demands to be given the same honor that one gives to the Father:

"The Father judges no one, but has given all judgment to the Son, that all may honor the Son, JUST AS they honor the Father. Whoever does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent him… And he has given him authority to execute judgment, because he is the Son of Man." John 5:22-23, 27

The Lord Jesus, in this text, refers to himself as both the Son of Man and Judge of all. Christ is obviously identifying himself as that Son of Man whom the prophet Daniel had seen by revelation:

"I saw in the night visions, and behold, with the clouds of heaven there came one like a Son of Man, and he came to the Ancient of Days and was presented before him. And to him was given dominion and glory and a kingdom, that all peoples, nations, and languages should serve him; his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom one that shall not be destroyed." Daniel 7:13-14

Thus, Jesus is the Son of Man who rules over all creation in an eternal kingdom, and is the One who determines the eternal destiny of every creature on the Day of Judgment. Yet according to the Hebrew Bible it is Yahweh who judges the nations:

"For behold, in those days and at that time, when I restore the fortunes of Judah and Jerusalem, I will gather all the nations and bring them down to the Valley of Jehoshaphat (literally, "Yahweh judges"). And I will enter into judgment with them there, on behalf of my people and my heritage Israel, because they have scattered them among the nations and have divided up my land, and have cast lots for my people, and have traded a boy for a prostitute, and have sold a girl for wine and have drunk it… Hasten and come, all you surrounding nations, and gather yourselves there. Bring down your warriors, O LORD. Let the nations stir themselves up and come up to the Valley of Jehoshaphat; for there I will sit to judge all the surrounding nations." Joel 3:1-3, 11-12

Notice that, once again, Jesus does what the OT prophets say Yahweh will do, which further shows that Jesus is identifying himself as Yahweh God!

The Lord Jesus claims that the reason why all judgment has been given to him is so that everyone may honor him just as they honor the Father, a truly remarkable claim. The implication of Jesus’ words is that all must worship him as God since the way in which true believers honor the Father is by giving him the worship which God alone deserves:

"But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him. God is Spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth." John 4:23-24

With the foregoing in view, pay attention to Jesus’ words again since he does not say to honor him as a prophet, or to give him the honor that one would give to parents etc. He says that men must give him the very same honor that they give to the Father, an honor which God alone deserves and which no creature can ever receive. Christ again makes a rather explicit claim to Deity, e.g. being the Divine Son who is consubstantial with the Father he deserves the very same worship and reverence that God alone receives.(1)

And this is precisely what we find is taking place in heaven and which will eventually occur universally when the Son returns from heaven to be glorified by everyone since every creature will be forced to render unto him the honor and worship he deserves:

"Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father." Philippians 2:9-11

"And when he had taken it, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb. Each one had a harp and they were holding golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints. And they sang a new song: ‘You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased men for God from every tribe and language and people and nation. You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth.’ Then I looked and heard the voice of many angels, numbering thousands upon thousands, and ten thousand times ten thousand. They encircled the throne and the living creatures and the elders. In a loud voice they sang: ‘Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and praise!’" Revelation 5:8-12

In these examples the Lord Jesus is receiving the same honor, praise and worship that faithful followers render to the one true God, in fulfillment of the Lord’s own words that all will honor him JUST AS they honor his Father:

"David praised the LORD in the presence of the whole assembly, saying, ‘Praise be to you, O LORD, God of our father Israel, from everlasting to everlasting. Yours, O LORD, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendor, for everything in heaven and earth is yours. Yours, O LORD, is the kingdom; you are exalted as head over all. Wealth and honor come from you; you are the ruler of all things. In your hands are strength and power to exalt and give strength to all. Now, our God, we give you thanks, and praise your glorious name.’" 1 Chronicles 29:10-13

"Declare what is to be, present it— let them take counsel together. Who foretold this long ago, who declared it from the distant past? Was it not I, the LORD? And there is no God apart from me, a righteous God and a Savior; there is none but me. Turn to me and be saved, all you ends of the earth; for I am God, and there is no other. By myself I have sworn, my mouth has uttered in all integrity a word that will not be revoked: Before me every knee will bow; by me every tongue will swear." Isaiah 45:21-23

"Also before the throne there was what looked like a sea of glass, clear as crystal. In the center, around the throne, were four living creatures, and they were covered with eyes, in front and in back. The first living creature was like a lion, the second was like an ox, the third had a face like a man, the fourth was like a flying eagle. Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under his wings. Day and night they never stop saying: ‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come.’ Whenever the living creatures give glory, honor and thanks to him who sits on the throne and who lives for ever and ever, the twenty-four elders fall down before him who sits on the throne, and worship him who lives for ever and ever. They lay their crowns before the throne and say: ‘You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being.’" Revelation 4:3-11

"Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, singing: ‘To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power, for ever and ever!’ The four living creatures said, ‘Amen,’ and the elders fell down and worshiped." Revelation 5:13-14

Our examination leads us to the conclusion that both Jesus and his blessed Apostle taught the same truth concerning the nature of the risen and exalted Lord (which shouldn’t surprise us seeing that Paul is Christ’s spokesperson). They plainly taught that Christ is the Son of God who is consubstantial or co-equal with the Father in essence and nature. In the words of the Nicene Creed:

We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,
the only Son of God,
eternally begotten of the Father,
God from God, Light from Light,
true God from true God,
begotten, not made,
of one Being with the Father.
Through him all things were made.
For us and for our salvation
he came down from heaven:
by the power of the Holy Spirit
he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary,
and was made man.
For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;
he suffered death and was buried.
On the third day he rose again
in accordance with the Scriptures;
he ascended into heaven
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead,
and his kingdom will have no end
(1, 2, 3)

Amen. We confess that you, O Lord, are the Father’s consubstantial Son, the risen Savior whom we love and worship as we eagerly wait for your second coming! Come Lord Jesus, come! Amen.


(1) Muslim amateur apologist and neophyte Sami Zaatari thinks he has come up with an answer to refute the orthodox interpretation of John 5:23. In recent debates that he has had concerning the Deity of the Lord Jesus this amateur tries to argue that the Greek word "just as" in John 5:23, kathos, can mean that Jesus was either telling people to honor him exactly like the Father or in a similar proportion to the honor that the Father receives. He then appeals to the Lord’s Prayer (cf. Matthew 6:9-13) to show that Jesus told people to pray to the Father which somehow proves that Christ wasn’t saying to give him exactly the same honor.

In the first place, it simply doesn’t follow that Jesus wasn’t demanding from his followers to worship him in the same way they worship the Father solely because elsewhere he told them to pray to the Father. After all, if we use this erroneous logic consistently then this means that the Father’s command to listen to Jesus:

"While he was still speaking, a bright cloud enveloped them, and a voice from the cloud said, ‘This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased. Listen to him!’" Matthew 17:5

Implies that believers should not also listen to him. Or that the Father commanding the angels to worship Jesus:

"And again, when God brings his firstborn into the world, he says, ‘Let all God's angels worship him.’" Hebrews 1:6

Means that we should not worship the Father.

Furthermore, the Lord Jesus himself told his followers that they could pray to him directly, as well as praying to the Father in his name:

"I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. You may ask ME for anything in my name, and I will do it." John 14:12-14

Christ explains here that the reason why the disciples will be able to do greater number of works than himself is because he is going to the Father from where he will personally answer all their prayers! And:

You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit — fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name." John 15:16

"In that day you will no longer ask me anything. I tell you the truth, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name." John 16:23

In fact, we even have examples of the early Church praying to Jesus and calling on his name:

"While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, ‘Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.’ Then he fell on his knees and cried out, ‘Lord, do not hold this sin against them.’ When he had said this, he fell asleep." Acts 7:59-60

"In Damascus there was a disciple named Ananias. The Lord called to him in a vision, ‘Ananias!’ ‘Yes, Lord,’ he answered. The Lord told him, ‘Go to the house of Judas on Straight Street and ask for a man from Tarsus named Saul, for he is praying. In a vision he has seen a man named Ananias come and place his hands on him to restore his sight.’ ‘Lord,’ Ananias answered, ‘I have heard many reports about this man and all the harm he has done to your saints in Jerusalem. And he has come here with authority from the chief priests to arrest all who call on your name.’ But the Lord said to Ananias, ‘Go! This man is my chosen instrument to carry my name before the Gentiles and their kings and before the people of Israel. I will show him how much he must suffer for my name.’ Then Ananias went to the house and entered it. Placing his hands on Saul, he said, ‘Brother Saul, the Lord—Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you were coming here—has sent me so that you may see again and be filled with the Holy Spirit.’ Immediately, something like scales fell from Saul's eyes, and he could see again. He got up and was baptized, and after taking some food, he regained his strength. Saul spent several days with the disciples in Damascus. At once he began to preach in the synagogues that Jesus is the Son of God. All those who heard him were astonished and asked, ‘Isn't he the man who raised havoc in Jerusalem among those who call on this name? And hasn't he come here to take them as prisoners to the chief priests?’" Acts 9:10-21

"To the church of God in Corinth, to those sanctified in Christ Jesus and called to be holy, together with all those everywhere who call on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ—their Lord and ours:" 1 Corinthians 1:2

This, again, exposes the utter desperation of Zaatari since it shows that Jesus’ command to pray to the Father doesn’t rule out praying to him as well nor does it negate the fact he is to receive the same kind of worship that the Father does. After all, the specific examples that we cited of people praying to and worshiping Jesus clearly proves that kathos in John 5:23 means that everyone must honor the Son in the same way that they honor the Father.

In light of the foregoing the reader can see why Zaatari’s argument is simply absurd and is nothing more than a desperate attempt of denying the plain, consistent teaching of God’s true Word that Jesus Christ is God’s beloved Son who is equal with the Father in essence.

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