Questions & Answers
Does the New Testament equate Jesus with the Lord (Yahweh) of the Old Testament? If so, where?
Yes to the first question, but let’s see why this is so before we give examples. This question is addressed in our Statement of Faith:
The unique nature and identity of Jesus Christ is further seen in Scripture by the fact that several divine names are used in reference both to the Father and the Son” (This We Believe, p. 18).
The “unique nature” of Jesus is outlined in Statement #2 – The Deity:
The sovereign deity of the universe is God Almighty, who is to be worshipped in spirit and in truth. He is eternal, infinite, holy, self-existent Spirit who created, sustains, rules, redeems, and judges His creation. He is one in nature, essence and being. God is revealed in Scripture as Father and Son (TWB, p. 11).
Jesus Christ is God’s one and only begotten Son. As begotten, not created, He shares the nature, names, and attributes of God with the Father. As Son, not Father, Jesus is subordinate to His Father in rank. From eternity, the Son was with the Father, shared the Father’s glory as the pre-incarnate Word, and with Him created and sustains all things” (TWB, p. 17).
As the Shema confesses, “The Lord our God, the Lord is one!” (Deuteronomy 6:4; 1 Corinthians 8:4). The divine unity (oneness) of the Father and Son is true because they share one “nature, essence and being.” Of Jesus it is said, “For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily”; He is “the brightness of [God’s] glory and the express image of His person” (Colossians 2:9; Hebrews 1:3). It follows that the Only Begotten “shares the . . . names . . . of God with the Father.” Here are a few examples.
In quoting Isaiah 40:3, three Gospels (Matthew 3:3; Mark 1:2, 3; Luke 3:4-6) equate the Old Testament name of God, Yahweh (Lord), with Jesus: “Prepare the way of the Lord; make straight in the desert a highway for our God.”
Paul does the same in Romans 10:8-14, equating the Lord Jesus with the name of the Lord from Joel 2:32 (cf. Acts 21:6-16; 1 Corinthians 1:2). Likewise, Philippians 2:11, attributes to the Lord Jesus the worship that Isaiah 45:22, 23 reserves for God alone: “For I am God, and there is no other. . . . to Me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall take an oath.” Remarkably, 1 Corinthians 8:6 identifies the Lord God of Creation and the Shema with God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
With respect to titles, Jesus in Revelation is referred to as the First and the Last (1:11, 17; 2:8; 22:13), but this title is reserved for Yahweh alone (Isaiah 44:6; 48:12). Other divine titles are true of both Father and Son: Creator (Genesis 1:1; 2:4; John 1:1; Colossians 1:16); Savior (Isaiah 43:3, 11; 45:17, 21; Matthew 1:21; Acts 4:12; Titus 1:4); Judge (Psalm 50:6; 75:7; 2 Timothy 4:1, 8); Lord of lords (Deuteronomy 10:17; Psalm 136:3; Revelation 17:14; 19:16) — to list just a few.
Other examples include Hebrews 1:6 (Deuteronomy 32:43); Hebrews 1:8, 9 (Psalm 45:6, 7); Hebrews 1:10-12 (Psalm 102:25-27); Matthew 3:3 (Isaiah 40:3).
Finally, Jesus is called God at least twelve times in the Bible (Isaiah 9:6; Matthew 1:23; John 1:1; 5:18; 20:28; Romans 9:5; Colossians 2:2, 9; 1 Timothy 3:16; Titus 2:13; Hebrews 1:8; 1 John 5:20).
— Elder Chip Hinds
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