Recorded in the gospel according to John is Jesus plainly stating to the Jews, “I and my Father are one” (John 10:30). By this point in time, Jesus had been performing all kinds of miracles and healing those who were in need of healing. Jesus had been ministering throughout the land – so He was known of. However, the Jews were uncertain of who exactly this Man was and how He could do the things He was doing (Luke 11:14-23). In John, it is recorded that the Jews said to Jesus, “how long will you make us doubt? If you are the Christ (Messiah), tell us plainly! (John 10:24)”
The Jews wanted answers and Jesus tells them plainly that He and God are one. There are many people who still question today, how can Jesus be God? I actually wrote a bible study last year on this very subject to answer the question about how Jesus was conceived. In this week’s bible study, I want to take another look at this topic as we close in on Christmas. What does it mean when Jesus says, “I and my Father are one”?
“Jesus can’t be God”
This is what some people say. I guarantee you that you know somebody that believes and says this. They say – “Jesus cannot be God”. The Jews, when Jesus tells them who He is, got angry and said this:
33 The Jews answered Him, saying, “For a good work we do not stone You, but for blasphemy, and because You, being a Man, make Yourself God.”John 10:33 NKJV
To this day, the fact that Jesus was living flesh and blood is a stumbling block for many people. The very idea that God could “become human” seemingly blows people away. I often chuckle at this because we write stories and even make movies and TV shows where god-like characters become human and interact with humans. So, why is it that the very idea of God becoming human so confusing and a stumbling block for many?
I believe the answer to the confusion lies within. You see, deep down inside of us, we know that we’re not good people. We have some very wicked and terrible thoughts, right? We also have some very wicked and terrible deeds, right? So, the idea that the Lord would lower Himself into becoming a human sound crazy to us. After all, why would God want to be human when He is so much better than us?
This is the struggle that many people have with the idea that God became human. People wonder, why would God care about us (me) so much? If you have ever had that thought, trust me, you are not alone. There are several times where I have that thought, but because of my faith, I smile and am very thankful that He does care about me (us).
I am going to share with you the response that Jesus gave the Jews:
34 Jesus answered them, “Is it not written in your law, ‘I said, “You are gods” ’?John 10:34 NKJV
Jesus quotes Psalm 82:6 to this group of Jews. So, let’s consider the Jews accusation of Jesus from Jesus’ standpoint.
The Israelites were commanded to keep the Law given to them from the Lord. In keeping the Law, the children of Israel would become the children of God. Application for Christians: if you strive to live like Christ (become the children of God), then you are also trying to be like God. This is true because Jesus and God are one. As genuine believers, people should see God when they see you! People will let you know what they see by your actions, and nowadays, they will let you know when they don’t see God in you.
What Jesus says to the Jews by asking them this question is, “are you not supposed to be like God yourselves?” They had been given the Law so they too should have been able to say, “I and my Father are one”. We as true worshipers and genuine believers should also be able to proclaim the same thing as well!
Let’s continue one:
35 If He called them gods, to whom the word of God came (and the Scripture cannot be broken),John 10:35 NKJV
Those in the Old Testament days who received the Law, and were of genuine faith in the Lord and keeping the Law, were called gods. Notice that they were called gods by God! Notice that it was the word of God that came to them and that their faith in that word is what made them the children of God. Jesus says to these Jews, “God called your ancestors ‘gods’ and the Lord’s word cannot be broken”. We should understand that the Lord considers those, of our time, who are of genuine faith in Him, gods as well.
36 do you say of Him whom the Father sanctified and sent into the world, ‘You are blaspheming,’ because I said, ‘I am the Son of God’?John 10:36 NKJV
The difference between Jesus, the Jews, and we of faith today is that Jesus was sanctified (separated) of this world before He entered into this world. You see, God is already sanctified and righteous. Jesus came from the Lord, He is a part of Him, so He was already sanctified before entering into this world. For us, we are not sanctified until we are of genuine faith in Christ our Lord and have been covered by His blood.
37 If I do not do the works of My Father, do not believe Me; 38 but if I do, though you do not believe Me, believe the works, that you may know and believe that the Father is in Me, and I in Him.”John 10:37-38 NKJV
Jesus challenges them: “do you believe the work that I am doing is good?” Jesus says to them, “If you believe I am doing the work of God,
Jesus says, “I and my Father are one,” and people seek for Him or those of faith to prove that He is God. Essentially Jesus says, “believe or do not believe.”
Back to the Word
I want to also focus on the part of the scripture (John 10:35) where Jesus mentions “the word came to them.” It is hard to talk about this subject of Jesus being God without acknowledging what John wrote in the very first chapter of His gospel.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was GodJohn 1:1 NKJV
Let us remember what Jesus said in John 10:35 about the word of God coming to those in the Old Testament. The phrase (the word of God) appears in the Old Testament over 1,200 times! So, certainly, there is great significance to this phrase. The word of God is often thought of simply as scripture but we will see it has even more meaning.
Notice that Jesus likened Himself to the word of God (John 10:35). Jesus spoke and taught of His deity to the apostles on multiple occasions recorded in scripture. (Matthew 16:13-20) Jesus asked the disciples, “who do people say I am?” The disciple’s response was, “one of the prophets” and they even named a few of the prophets. Peter, however, responded, “You are the Christ, the Son of God.” To this response, you will notice that Jesus didn’t argue or say that Peter was wrong but confirmed this to be true and commanded the disciples to tell nobody (Matthew 16:20).
On another occasion (Luke 9:28-36), Jesus took Peter, John, and James into the mountain to pray. While Jesus prayed, His face changed, His appearance changed, His robe turned white and was glistening – this is the Transfiguration. Appearing next to Jesus was Moses and the prophet Elijah and the disciples saw Jesus in His glory. They heard a voice from overhead, out of a cloud, that said (Luke 9:35), “This is My Son. Hear Him!” We recall from the gospels that on another occasion, something similar happened when John the Baptist baptized Jesus (Matthew 3:17). After Jesus was baptized, the people heard a voice saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”
John, you should understand, had a great understanding of the deity of Jesus. In his gospel, you read about the life of Jesus from a perspective of a man that wanted you to see the deity of Christ. So John takes the phrase, “the word of God” and tells us that the Word of God was there in the beginning. John personifies the word of God onto Jesus because Jesus had taught and likened Himself to that word of God that came in the form of the Law.
So now instead of the word of God (Old Testament), we have the Word of God (Jesus – New Testament). This again speaks to the deity of Jesus. John says that the Word was with God, even in the beginning; this also shows the relationship and fellowship of both the Father and the Son. John then says to us that the Word is God! This, of course, has to be true because it came from God.
We must understand that the word of God, in the Old Testament (the Law), since it came from the Lord was God as well. I believe that this is acceptable and easy to understand, right? If that is the case, Jesus tells us that He is the physical manifestation of the word of God. If the Law was God, then Jesus must also be God as well!
John then wrote one of my favorite scriptures in the Bible:
14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.John 1:14 NKJV
Who can prove He is not God?
I understand that it is a struggle for some to believe that Jesus is God in the flesh; it was certainly a struggle for the Jews. They wanted Jesus to prove who He was badly. They even sought for somebody that could testify as His witness. They said to Jesus (John 8:13), “you bear witness of Yourself, but your witness is not true!” This is to say, “who else can testify of what you are saying because we don’t believe you.”
I say to you that faith is required because who is going to prove Jesus/God is a liar? There was no such thing as a DNA test back then and there’s no way that we can do such a test now.
We will take a look at Jesus’ response to the Jews and close our study off of His response. This response, though it happens earlier in John’s gospel still serves as a point to our study.
14 Jesus answered and said to them, “Even if I bear witness of Myself, My witness is true, for I know where I came from and where I amJohn 8:14 NKJV
going;but you do not know where I come from and where I am going.
It’s like when you tell somebody who you are, but they doubt you, and you say to them, “that’s OK – I know who I am”. We could actually end with this scripture but I want you to see more of what Jesus said in this response.
16 And yet if I do judge, My judgment is true; for I am not alone, but I am with the Father who sent Me. 17 It is also written in your law that the testimony of two men is true. 18 I am One who bears witness of Myself, and the Father who sent Me bears witness of Me.”John 8:16-19 NKJV
19 Then they said to Him, “Where is Your Father?”
Jesus answered, “You know neither Me nor My Father. If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also.”
We opened this study with John 10:30. Now, if you go back to John 10 and read that chapter, you’ll see that Jesus was talking about being the True Good Shepherd.
Jesus talked about how sheep will hear the voice of their shepherd and follow his voice (John 10:3-4). However, strangers are unable to lead the sheep because they will flee the voice of a stranger (John 10:5). I mention this because, Jesus’ sheep recognize Him, His voice, His power, and His deity. We, the true followers of Christ understand that He and the Father are one and have nothing to prove to anybody.
Mankind must choose to accept this truth or disregard this truth. We must decide whether we believe what is recorded in scripture. Do we believe what the apostles shared with us in the New Testament of the man named Jesus? I choose to believe what they have shared. There is nothing out there that fills my soul the way that the name of Jesus does. I believe that He is Lord, and I believe that I am a child of His.
I hope that you enjoyed this study and that you will share this study with somebody somewhere. May God continue to keep and bless all of you.