Where Does Jesus Say, "I Am God. Worship Me?"

  Where in the Bible does Jesus say, "I Am God. Worship Me?"

  We have covered in other articles how Jesus applies the Divine Name to Himself in explicit and unmistakable statements of His deity. We have also covered in another article how Jesus was worshiped time and again in the New Testament, and yet never refused the worship. What's more, Jesus never rebukes or corrects the apostle who directly addresses Him as GOD.

  In this article, we will explore another passage in which Jesus yet again sets out some very clear claims to deity and equality with the Almighty God.

  Let's take a look at our context: in John 5, Jesus had just healed a man who had been sick for 38 years on the Sabbath, and this had infuriated the religious Jews who claimed He had broken the law against working on the day of rest. A crime which was punishable by death. 

  And so Jesus begins a dissertation to tell them in no uncertain terms just Who He is. In vv. 19-20, He discusses His dependence upon and unity with the Father, which is completely in line with His mission as Messiah and Obedient Son. 
And then Jesus says (italics mine):

21 "And just as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, so the Son also gives life to anyone He wants to. 

22 The Father, in fact, judges no one but has given all judgment to the Son, 

23 so that all people will honor the Son just as they honor the Father. Anyone who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent Him." John 5

  In verse 21, when Jesus uses the words "just as," He is saying that He does these things in the same way as the Father.


  Jesus repeats the phrase in verse 23:


23 so that all people will honor the Son just as they honor the Father. 


  And does so again in verse 26: 


26 For just as the Father has life in Himself, so also He has granted to the Son to have life in Himself.

  So we see Jesus claiming equal powers with the Father. But equal powers to do what?


  In verse 21, Jesus says He has the power to give life to anyone He wants to


  Since only the Creator God has the power to give life and to raise people from the dead, this is obviously a claim to divine powers which are unavailable to any ordinary man or the mere "messenger" Muslims claim Jesus to be. 


  And since Muslims claim that Jesus only did what miracles He did "by permission from God," they also have to explain how Jesus can say He gives life to anyone He wants to and in the same way that the Father does. This is autonomy and independence that belies their claim of Jesus' need to seek "permission." 


  Verse 22 is just as powerful if not more so, as it shows us a delegation of the Divine authority to judge man for their sins from the Father to the Son. No mere man can claim this authority for at least two reasons that I can think of:


  1) only One Who can see into a man's heart would be capable of such judgement. 

  2) only One Who is sinless has the right to judge others.

  In this discussion with the Jews, Jesus is making just such a claim.

  But He goes even farther in verse 23, when He says that the Father has given Him the position of Divine Judge for one purpose:

23 so that all people will honor the Son just as they honor the Father. 
  
  Jesus is not just claiming equality with the Father, but He is also claiming the same honor for Himself as worshipers give to the Father. 

  As Barnes' Notes on the Bible commentary puts it, 

  "If our Saviour here did not intend to teach that he ought to be "worshipped," and to be esteemed as "equal" with God, it would be difficult to teach it by any language which we could use."
  
  This is the reason why Jesus always accepted the worship that was offered Him.

  The reason why He did not reject or correct Thomas when the apostle  declared to His Master, "You are the Lord of me and the God of me!"

  And the reason why every knee will bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord:
Jesus is God!
   

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