Is Jesus Omnipotent (All-powerful)?

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on whatsapp
Share on email
Segment of "Jesus Tempted" by Carl Heinrich Bloch (19th century)

Last edited on 24/Dec/2019

Introduction

The Bible’s answer to this question is yes; Jesus Christ is omnipotent, the most powerful being in existence. The Bible tells us in many passages that Jesus is God (eg. John 1:1, 14; John 20:28; Hebrews 1:8; Revelation 1:17). By definition, God is all-powerful. For God to be God, there cannot be anything above him in power, otherwise the more powerful thing would be God. Since the Bible calls Jesus God, this demands, then, that he must be all-powerful.

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” (John 1:1

“And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:14)

“Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!” 29 Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” (John 20:28-29)

However, opponents of the Bible and Christianity usually do not accept this argument. Most of them already know about the Scriptures which plainly call Christ God, but they are not convinced by them, since their man-made theological systems demand that they deny these Scriptures, and put their own twists on them. One way to go about this, could be to examine their twists on these Scriptures, and using sound biblical reasoning, refute them one by one. Or, we could point to other Scriptures which indicate that Christ is indeed all-powerful. Because there wouldn’t be enough time to cover all the non-Christian arguments against these Scriptures, in this article, we will do the latter.

Jesus Is the Creator

Apart from all the Scriptures which call Jesus God, Christ’s omnipotence is seen most clearly in the fact that he is the Creator of all things in existence. The Bible teaches this in the following Scriptures:

“All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made.” (John 1:3)

“For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him.” (Colossians 1:16)

“And, “You, Lord, laid the foundation of the earth in the beginning, and the heavens are the work of your hands;” (Hebrews 1:10)

Causes, by definition, must always be greater than the effects they produce; otherwise, they could not produce anything. Since, therefore, Jesus is the Creator, hence cause, of all things that have been made, he therefore must be more powerful than anything in creation.

Some might retort: “Then who caused Jesus?” The answer could go like this:

  • 1. The Bible calls Jesus God, and by definition, God is the uncaused cause. If God were caused, he would not be God; the thing that caused him would be God instead.
  • 2. The question “Who caused God?” is misleading, because it changes the definition of who God actually is.

Still, others may retort: “Jesus only created everything after God the Father first created him”. The answer to this objection could be as follows:

  • 1. Jesus is God, so he was not created by the Father. God cannot, by definition, be caused.
  • 2. There are no Scriptures which teach that Jesus was created, or that he is the Father’s first creation, so to say he was created is making an unbiblical assertion.
  • 3. If Jesus himself were caused, then he would not actually be the Creator of “all things”, which is the exact phrase that two of the above passages use, but would instead be “a creation who created all things other than himself”.
  • 4. John does a masterful job of refuting this false doctrine by declaring: “without him was not any thing made that was made”; in other words, all things that have been created were created by Christ himself. And, it should be obvious to any reasonable person that Christ did not make himself.

Other Bible Passages

In addition to Jesus being the uncreated Creator, there are several other Bible passages which teach that Jesus does certain things that would only be possible if he were all-powerful. Here are just a few examples:

1. All things are held together in Jesus:

“And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together.” (Colossians 1:17)

2. Jesus upholds the universe by the word of his power:

“He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high,” (Hebrews 1:3)

3. Jesus’ power enables him to subject all things to himself:

“But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ, 21 who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself.” (Philippians 3:20-21)

If you think about it, it would be absurd to say that someone who is powerful enough to hold all things in the universe together within himself, who is powerful enough to uphold the universe itself simply by speaking, and who is powerful enough to subject everything in existence to himself, is anything other than omnipotent. All of the above passages speak of powers that go beyond anything the human mind can possibly comprehend; powers that are so astronomical and otherworldly that there is nothing in all creation that could possess them save God alone, with whom nothing is impossible. To top this all off, the Bible tells us that Jesus holds positions that he could only hold if he were all-powerful, namely:

5. Jesus is equal with God the Father:

“Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, 6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.” (Philippians 2:5-7)

6. Jesus is above all:

“He who comes from above is above all. He who is of the earth belongs to the earth and speaks in an earthly way. He who comes from heaven is above all.” (John 3:31)

How could someone who is equal with God the Father himself, and who is above everything in creation, be anything other than omnipotent? Again, to say otherwise would be absurd. The Bible is very clear that Jesus is omnipotent; so clear, in fact, that there is absolutely no excuse for anyone who carefully and honestly reads the Bible to deny it. It is important that we recognise Jesus’ omnipotence because it’s directly related to his deity, an essential doctrine according to Scripture (John 8:24; 1 John 4:2-3). These two points go hand in hand, for one cannot be true without the other being true. Those who deny one or the other are guilty of trampling upon the blood of Christ, and will be held accountable for it by God on the last day.

Jesus’ Earthly Life

And still, some might ask: “But how could Jesus be all-powerful if he showed signs of weakness while on the earth?” This is a good question. There are instances throughout the Gospels when we see that Jesus did in fact share some of our human weaknesses.

But this is simply because when he came to the earth, Jesus did not just have a divine nature (that which makes him God); he had a human nature, too. Jesus is fully God and fully man (Colossians 2:9). In order to truly live as a human being just like us, Jesus had to take upon himself all the weaknesses and limitations that came with it (Hebrews 2:917).

But Jesus did not cease being God or omnipotent according to his divine nature while on the earth. For example, if he wanted to, Jesus could have summoned a legion of angels to save him from his enemies (Matthew 26:53-54). He simply chose not to use these powers and his equality with the Father in such a way that would make life easier for him or obstruct his role as the Messiah that would ultimately lead to the cross (Philippians 2:6). Jesus was a human just like us, except unlike us, he never sinned (Hebrews 4:16), and so the Father never left him (John 8:29).

Jesus decided to become a perfect human being so that he could live as the Last Adam, our perfect substitute (1 Corinthians 15:45). Just as sin and death came to all humans through the First Adam’s transgression, life and salvation comes to all who trust in the Last Adam’s righteousness, because he fulfilled the Law on our behalf, and died for the sins of the world (Romans 5:17-19). Once Jesus was raised from death, and ascended back to heaven, all his human limitations were lifted, and he regained all the divine privileges that he had temporarily set aside in the incarnation (John 17:5Matthew 28:18).

Since, therefore, Jesus did not cease being God when he became a man, and simply chose not to use his omnipotence to his own advantage while on the earth, this question poses no problem for Christians or the Bible.

Conclusion

Jesus’ omnipotence is taught in the Bible. He is all-powerful, and can do whatever he pleases. In the beginning, he created all things. Today, he continues to uphold all of creation within himself, and by the word of his power. His omnipotence goes hand-in-hand with his deity, because one necessitates the other. Because Jesus’ deity is an essential doctrine according to Scripture, this means that his omnipotence is, too. To deny Christ’s omnipotence or deity is the equivalent of trampling upon his blood and blaspheming his holy name. Those who do so will be held accountable for it by God on the day of judgement. As Christians, we should always be ready to defend Jesus for who the Bible says he is, for the sake of those who do not know him.

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on whatsapp
Share on email