Rebuttal to Christadelphian Booklet: “Did Jesus Christ really come down from Heaven?” — Contents

Rebuttal to Christadelphian Booklet: “Did Jesus Christ really come down from Heaven?”

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Last edited on 25/Jan/2021

1. Introduction: the Bible Affirms the Pre-existence and Deity of Jesus Christ

The Bible teaches that Jesus Christ pre-existed before he was born of the virgin Mary on Earth. This is undebatable within Christianity, because Christians believe that Jesus is both true God and true man (Please see Is Jesus God? and What Is the Holy Trinity? for more information). However, Christian-based cults such as the Christadelphians and Biblical Unitarians deny Christ’s pre-existence, claiming that he only started existing when he was born on Earth (thus they believe he was created). But this is clearly false as this Bible-based article is about to show.

One of the most clear testimonies that bears witness to Christ’s pre-existence is what Jesus himself says in the Gospel of John:

For I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will but the will of him who sent me. — Jesus Christ (John 6:38)

Jesus explicitly said that he came down from Heaven. It can’t get any simpler and clearer than that. This means that Jesus could not have started existing only in Mary’s womb. The Bible’s testimony is that Jesus pre-existed before he was born and dwelt in Heaven with his Heavenly Father and the Holy Spirit. No one had ascended into Heaven at that time except for Jesus, who descended from heaven:

No one has ascended into heaven except he who descended from heaven, the Son of Man. — Jesus Christ (John 3:13)

Therefore, humans do not have a heavenly dwelling before life on Earth, nor did people of Old Testament times (they did after the Lord’s resurrection, though). Jesus was unique, therefore, in that before he became flesh, according to John 1:14 (notice how it says “became flesh” and not “created”; Jesus was not created), he pre-existed, unlike anyone else. Another thing we know about Christ’s pre-existence was that because Jesus came from above (Heaven), he is above all and does not speak in an earthly way:

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

Thus we can see why Jesus was so set apart from us in holiness and conduct: he came from Heaven, God’s abode of sinless, untainted perfection. He pre-existed as God Almighty. Genesis tells us that in the beginning, God the Father and the Holy Spirit were involved in the creation of the world:

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. 2 The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. (Genesis 1:1–2)

In the New Testament, we are told that Jesus Christ was there in the beginning with the Father and the Holy Spirit, and that he was the one who laid the foundation of the Earth, and created the heavens:

But of the Son he says … “You, Lord, laid the foundation of the earth in the beginning, and the heavens are the work of your hands; (Hebrews 1:8–10)

We know from the Bible that people other than the biblical authors testified to Jesus’ pre-existence, such as John the Baptist, who said that Jesus was (existed) before him:

The next day he saw Jesus coming towards him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! 30 This is he of whom I said, ‘After me comes a man who ranks before me, because he was before me.’ (John 1:29–30)

Finally, the Bible tells us that as part of Jesus’ pre-existence, he appeared at different points in the Old Testament era. Here, the Bible tells us that Jesus is the God of Israel, who saved the Hebrews from slavery in Egypt:

Now I want to remind you, although you once fully knew it, that Jesus, who saved a people out of the land of Egypt, afterwards destroyed those who did not believe. (Jude 5)

Compare this with Exodus 20:1–2:

And God spoke all these words, saying, 2 “I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery. (Exodus 20:1–2)

Some translations say “Lord” instead of “Jesus” in Jude 5, but there is strong (basically undeniable) evidence to support the “Jesus” translation. The Authorised (King James) Version says:

4 For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ. 5 I will therefore put you in remembrance, though ye once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed them that believed not. (Jude 4–5, AV)

From this, since both God the Father and Jesus Christ are called Lord in the previous verse, it would seem like Lord could refer both to the Father or to Jesus, right? Not so if you look at the Greek of the passage. In verse 4, two different words for Lord are used; “despotes” is used for God the Father and “kyrios” is used for Jesus Christ.³ We can be sure that the Lord of verse 5 refers to Jesus, because the Greek word for Lord in that passage is not “despotes”, which was used for the Father, but actually “kyrios”, which was used for Jesus.³ Therefore, the translation that says “Jesus, who saved a people out of the land of Egypt“, from the English Standard Version, is actually more accurate and should be preferable over any others that just say Lord.

There are many more passages that testify to Christ’s pre-existence, most of them coming from the Gospel of John, such as:

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. … No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father’s side, he has made him known. (John 1:1, 18)  (Note: While some manuscripts say “only Son” instead of “only God”, the vast majority say “only God”.)

Jesus then said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, it was not Moses who gave you the bread from heaven, but my Father gives you the true bread from heaven. 33 For the bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.” 34 They said to him, “Sir, give us this bread always.” 35 Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst. (John 6:32–35)

So the Jews grumbled about him, because he said, “I am the bread that came down from heaven.” 42 They said, “Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How does he now say, ‘I have come down from heaven’?” (John 6:41–42)

It is written in the Prophets, ‘And they will all be taught by God.’ Everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to me— 46 not that anyone has seen the Father except he who is from God; he has seen the Father. (John 6:45–46)

I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live for ever. And the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.” (John 6:51

But Jesus, knowing in himself that his disciples were grumbling about this, said to them, “Do you take offence at this? 62 Then what if you were to see the Son of Man ascending to where he was before? (John 6:61–62)

So Jesus proclaimed, as he taught in the temple, “You know me, and you know where I come from? But I have not come of my own accord. He who sent me is true, and him you do not know. 29 I know him, for I come from him, and he sent me.” (John 7:28–29)

Your father Abraham rejoiced that he would see my day. He saw it and was glad.” 57 So the Jews said to him, “You are not yet fifty years old, and have you seen Abraham?” 58 Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am.” 59 So they picked up stones to throw at him, but Jesus hid himself and went out of the temple. (John 8:56–59)

Isaiah said these things because he saw his glory and spoke of him. 42 Nevertheless, many even of the authorities believed in him, but for fear of the Pharisees they did not confess it, so that they would not be put out of the synagogue; (John 12:41–42) (Note: Isaiah saw the glory of the pre-incarnate Jesus in Isaiah 6:1, who is God Almighty.)

And now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had with you before the world existed. (John 17:5

For I want you to know, brothers, that our fathers were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea, 2 and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, 3 and all ate the same spiritual food, 4 and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank from the spiritual Rock that followed them, and the Rock was Christ. (1 Corinthians 10:1–4

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. 8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. (Philippians 2:58)

As shown clearly, the Bible teaches that Jesus pre-existed in Heaven before his birth on Earth. Jesus is not a created being as some erroneously suggest.

2. Was Jesus Being Literal or Figurative in John 6:38?

For I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will but the will of him who sent me. — Jesus Christ (John 6:38)

Note: From now on, whenever text is quoted in italics “like this”, it is a quote from Alan Hayward’s Christadelphian booklet: “Did Jesus Christ really come down from Heaven?”

But some have argued that Jesus did not live in Heaven personally, and that these verses (referring to the ones in John 6) must be taken figuratively, not literally. This is the view of Christadelphianism. Please understand that it is not the intention of this article to disrespect Christadelphians or their beliefs. The sole purpose is to compare their beliefs with the teachings of the Bible, and to come to a logical and honest conclusion based on the results found. Mr. Hayward argues in his booklet, “Did Jesus Christ really come down from Heaven?” that because Jesus is just a man, he can’t have literally meant that he came down from Heaven, and so what he really meant was that “his life began when the God of heaven reached down to earth and worked a mighty miracle on his mother, Mary.”

To show this, Mr. Hayward first points to John 6:53–54:

So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54 Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day. (John 6:53–54)

He commented “This is figurative language. It does not mean what it appears to say; instead, it carries a deeper meaning. … As a matter of fact the unbelieving Jews did misunderstand this and similar sayings of Jesus. They said, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?” Perhaps they thought Jesus was preaching cannibalism!”  Mr. Hayward then quoted John 6:31:

Our fathers ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written, ‘He gave them bread from heaven to eat.’” (John 6:31)

He claimed that “This is obviously figurative. This miraculous bread was not baked in heaven and then delivered to the earth. The statement that it came from heaven informs us that the God of heaven created it on earth.”

Finally, Mr. Hayward mentioned a Bible-based hymn which is commonly sung during harvest time. The chorus of the hymn starts as: “All good gifts around us are sent from heaven above.” He then noted that this is quoted from James 1:17:

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. (James 1:17)

“When farmers sing that hymn, they do not imagine that their crops literally come down “from heaven above.” They simply mean that God gives us our harvests.”

2 a. John 6:53–54

However, the first thing we must realise is that the Bible is to be taken literally all the time (In other words, it means exactly what it says), unless it is clearly stated or specified otherwise based on the context. Unless we follow this rule, anyone can say whatever they want about any Bible passage. What must be understood is that in John 6:53–54, Jesus clearly explained this as being figurative, because he was using this metaphor to explain his sacrifice for humanity (in the previous passage):

I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live for ever. And the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh. (John 6:51)

Here, Jesus was speaking about his sacrifice on the cross. In metaphorical terms, Jesus said whoever feeds on his flesh and blood, that is, those who have faith in what he did on the cross, will have eternal life. We know both from a practical and common sense basis that Jesus was not talking about literally eating or drinking his flesh and blood: firstly, because Jesus did not teach cannibalism, secondly, because his disciples did not teach or practise such things, and thirdly, because Jesus already explained earlier that “coming to him” and “belief” in him were the intended meanings of his message:

Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst. (John 6:35)

Jesus used metaphors of food to say that he is the only one who perfectly satisfies our spiritual hunger and thirst. Clearly, this is very different from Jesus’ very literal and explicit claims of him coming from Heaven. Remember, the Bible is to be taken literally unless clearly specified otherwise (Jesus clearly specified that his “flesh” and “blood” were symbolic of his sacrifice), otherwise, anyone can manipulate any Bible passage to fit their own desires.

2 b. John 6:31

With regards to John 6:31, in which the Jews said that God gave their ancestors bread from Heaven to eat, that account is found in Exodus 16:

Then the LORD said to Moses, “Behold, I am about to rain bread from heaven for you, and the people shall go out and gather a day’s portion every day, that I may test them, whether they will walk in my law or not. … 11 And the LORD said to Moses, 12 “I have heard the grumbling of the people of Israel. Say to them, ‘At twilight you shall eat meat, and in the morning you shall be filled with bread. Then you shall know that I am the LORD your God.’” (Exodus 16:4, 11–12)

In the evening quail came up and covered the camp, and in the morning dew lay around the camp. 14 And when the dew had gone up, there was on the face of the wilderness a fine, flake-like thing, fine as frost on the ground. 15 When the people of Israel saw it, they said to one another, “What is it?” For they did not know what it was. And Moses said to them, “It is the bread that the LORD has given you to eat. (Exodus 16:13-15)

There is no reason to disbelieve that God rained bread from Heaven for the Jews, as he clearly said he did. He may not have “baked it in heaven”, but he still rained it down from Heaven, just like he did with the quail, and they both “covered” and “lay around the camp”. To say that this is just figurative is to deny God’s Word, because nothing figurative is implied, just like Jesus’ claims of coming from Heaven.

2 c. James 1:17

Now with regards to James 1:17, of course good and perfect gifts don’t literally fly down from Heaven. Like with John 6:53–54, we can use common sense and logic to know this. The apostles and early Christians did not wait expectedly for things to fall down from the sky in answer to their prayers. The passage clearly specified that it was figurative, which is in harmony with the Bible needing to be taken literally unless specified otherwise. However, is it reasonable and biblical to believe that therefore Jesus cannot come down from Heaven? Absolutely not. Consider the following examples. Here, 40 days after his resurrection from the dead, Jesus was lifted up to Heaven:

While he blessed them, he parted from them and was carried up into heaven. (Luke 24:51)

And when he had said these things, as they were looking on, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. (Acts 1:9)

Furthermore, Jesus said that when he will come again to judge the living and the dead, he will return from Heaven on clouds, with power and glory:

Then will appear in heaven the sign of the Son of Man, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. (Matthew 24:30)

These are literal passages that apply to Jesus. He had divine powers unlike anyone else, and used them in miraculous ways throughout his life. This is different from gifts coming down from Heaven. As we can see, clearly it is not impossible for Jesus to do something as supernatural as to come down from Heaven. In the book of James, the apostle was telling us that all good gifts come from Heaven, where God the Father dwells. In the book of John, the apostle was telling his audience that Jesus came down from Heaven to do the will of his Father, and to bring as many people to salvation as possible through his sinless life, death, and resurrection.

2 d. John 6:38 Is Not Figurative, Summary, and Noteworthy Questions

To sum everything up so far, Mr. Hayward has not really proven anything to suggest that John 6:31 (and the other passages) are figurative and not literal. He has only given his opinions about certain Bible passages. Jesus made it clear that his “flesh” and “blood” were metaphors for his future sacrifice. The “bread from heaven” clearly did rain down from Heaven, just as the Bible says. James is a different book of the Bible, has a different context than John, and referred to gifts coming down from Heaven, not a person or living being. These do not affect whether Jesus’ claims on him coming from Heaven were literal or not. Let us now observe the context of the passage at hand:

Our fathers ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written, ‘He gave them bread from heaven to eat.’” 32 Jesus then said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, it was not Moses who gave you the bread from heaven, but my Father gives you the true bread from heaven. 33 For the bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.” 34 They said to him, “Sir, give us this bread always.” 35 Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst. 36 But I said to you that you have seen me and yet do not believe. 37 All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out. 38 For I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will but the will of him who sent me. 39 And this is the will of him who sent me, that I should lose nothing of all that he has given me, but raise it up on the last day. 40 For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.” (John 6:31–40)

What is so figurative here? We are told that Jesus is the bread of life because he is the true bread from Heaven, sent from the Father, because he gives life to the world, and also because he alone perfectly satisfies our spiritual hunger and thirst, unlike the manna from Heaven in the wilderness which did not give eternal life. We are told that everyone who comes to Jesus from the Father will never be cast out. We are told that Jesus came down from Heaven to do the will of his Father, that he should lose none of whom the Father has given him, and that he gives them eternal life. We are told that whoever believes in Jesus will have eternal life and that he will resurrect them from the dead.

If Jesus’ “coming down from Heaven” is figurative, then is him doing the will of his Father figurative too? Is believing in him for eternal life figurative too? Is Jesus raising people from the dead figurative too? Is Jesus giving life to the world figurative too? Is the Father giving life to those who will believe in Jesus figurative too? Clearly not. Therefore, Jesus coming down from Heaven is not figurative either. As stated before, the Bible is to be taken literally unless the context clearly specifies a symbolic meaning, otherwise, anyone can manipulate any Bible passage to fit their own desires.

3. The Real Argument of Mr. Hayward

In fact, the real reason why Mr. Hayward believes that the passages about Jesus coming down from Heaven are purely figurative is because, as he stated in his booklet, “In the light of all the plain teaching we have looked at” (after he tried to give evidence that Jesus was not God) “we can be certain that Jesus was a real man. That being so, his words about “coming down from heaven” simply must have been figurative”. Therefore, Mr. Hayward’s denial of Jesus’ deity is what he based his whole argument on. In summary, his argument is: “Jesus is not God, therefore, he can’t have been speaking literally about coming down from Heaven.” This now makes a lot more sense as to how he came to his conclusion. But this is also not biblical.

3 a. The Logical Problems of Such an Argument

Imagine if a Docetist (one who denies that Jesus had a natural or real body during his life on Earth) were to say, “Jesus is God”, show many proofs for this from the Bible, and then declare that because of this, the Bible can’t have been speaking literally when it says “And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus” (Luke 1:31). Imagine if they were to say that this passage is only metaphorical, because when it says that the virgin gave birth, what it really means is that Jesus’ coming to Earth was one of humility. Imagine if they then pointed to Luke 1:69 and told the audience to notice the figurative use of the “horn of salvation” in the same chapter to give weight to their argument. Finally, imagine if they were to also say that clearly Jesus was only Mary’s son in a figurative way, because the Bible sometimes uses the phrase “son(s) of” something (e.g. “sons of light” in John 12:36) in a figurative way that carries a much deeper meaning than the literal understanding. Their argument would be: “Jesus is God, therefore, the Bible can’t have been literal when it says that he was born of the virgin Mary.” You see, this is really no different from the essence of Mr. Hayward’s argument, and it just doesn’t work.

Another question worth asking is what about the other miracles of Jesus? What about when Jesus walked on water in the same chapter in which he said he came down from Heaven (John 6:19)? Or when Jesus fed the 5,000 with five barley loaves and two fish (John 6:513)? Were they just figurative too, just because it is hard to imagine a man doing such things? The answer by now should be clear: no, they were not figurative. Therefore, there is no reason to believe that Jesus was being figurative when he said that he came down from Heaven, just because it may be hard for some people to believe.

4. Was Jesus Being Literal or Figurative in John 17:5?

As quoted before, John 17:5 is another Bible passage which testifies to the pre-existence of Jesus. Jesus said that he shared glory with the Father before the world existed:

And now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had with you before the world existed. (John 17:5)

This is very clearly teaching his pre-existence. You cannot share glory with someone, let alone anything with anyone, and not exist at the same time. However, Mr. Hayward also argues that John 17:5 must be figurative as well, because he believes that Jesus is just a man and not God. To do this, he quotes from Romans 4:17, which says:

as it is written, “I have made you the father of many nations”—in the presence of the God in whom he believed, who gives life to the dead and calls into existence the things that do not exist. (Romans 4:17)

“To us the future is unknown: we can only guess what will happen tomorrow. But God knows the future; tomorrow is as real to Him as today is to us. … Note that word, ‘have”. Not, “I will make you,” but, “I have made you”. At that time Abraham had only one child. But when God promises something, that promise is certain. The thing is as good as done.” Mr. Hayward then concluded that God can declare a future event as if it had already happened and said that this happened in the following three examples:

Now the word of the LORD came to me, saying, 5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.” (Jeremiah 1:4–5)

“So God knew Jeremiah before the man was born! Obviously, this is figurative language. It does not mean that Jeremiah really existed before his birth. It means that God could look into the future and see Jeremiah before he was born. To express it another way, before Jeremiah was born he existed in the mind of God.”

“Even before the world was made, God had already chosen us to be his through our union with Christ, so that we would be holy and without fault before him. Because of his love 5 God had already decided that through Jesus Christ he would make us his children—this was his pleasure and purpose.” (Ephesians 1:45, GNT)

“He was destined before the foundation of the world but was made manifest at the end of the times for your sake.” (1 Peter 1:20, RSV)

“The verse quoted above, then, tells us that God knew all about Jesus before He created the world. … Jeremiah, the early church, and the Lord Jesus Christ. They were all there, in the mind of God, from the beginning of time.”

4 a. Jeremiah 1:4–5, Ephesians 1:4–5

As Mr. Hayward correctly pointed out, God does know the future, he can declare in the present what will happen in the future, and he did know Jeremiah before he was born because he can see into the future. He is also correct about true Christians being known by God before their existence. However, he is wrong in saying that Jesus was known before he existed. But for now, we will focus on Jeremiah 1:4–5 and Ephesians 1:4–5 first.

Notice how these passages just say that God knew them, and not vice versa. This is because like Jeremiah, and all Christians, no human pre-existed, and therefore we could not know God. But this is very different with Jesus. Consider the following passages from the Bible. The Bible tells us that:

Jesus has seen the Father in his pre-existence (“he who is from God”):

It is written in the Prophets, ‘And they will all be taught by God.’ Everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to me— 46 not that anyone has seen the Father except he who is from God; he has seen the Father. (John 6:45–46)

Jesus has seen things with the Father in his pre-existence:

I speak of what I have seen with my Father, and you do what you have heard from your father.” (John 8:38)

Jesus has seen Abraham in his pre-existence:

Your father Abraham rejoiced that he would see my day. He saw it and was glad.” 57 So the Jews said to him, “You are not yet fifty years old, and have you seen Abraham?” 58 Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am.” 59 So they picked up stones to throw at him, but Jesus hid himself and went out of the temple. (John 8:56–59)

Jesus and the Father knew each other in Jesus’ pre-existence (“for I come from him”; also no one knows Jesus but the Father nor the Father but Jesus and those to whom he chooses to reveal him):

I know him, for I come from him, and he sent me.” (John 7:29)

All things have been handed over to me by my Father, and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal him. (Matthew 11:27)

I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, 15 just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep. (John 10:14–15)

Jesus heard from the Father in his pre-existence (note the past tense and him being sent into the world):

I have much to say about you and much to judge, but he who sent me is true, and I declare to the world what I have heard from him.” (John 8:26)

No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you. (John 15:15)

 Jesus knows where he came from (notice how he says “where”, not “who”):

Jesus answered, “Even if I do bear witness about myself, my testimony is true, for I know where I came from and where I am going, but you do not know where I come from or where I am going. (John 8:14)

Jesus knows what is in his Father’s house:

In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. (John 14:2–3)

Jesus was at the Father’s side in his pre-existence:

No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father’s side, he has made him known. (John 1:18) (Note: Further down Mr. Hayward’s claim that the Word does not refer to Jesus will be refuted.)

Jesus was in the beginning with God the Father and the Holy Spirit, and was involved in creating all things in his pre-existence:

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

But of the Son he says … “You, Lord, laid the foundation of the earth in the beginning, and the heavens are the work of your hands; (Hebrews 1:8-10)

These passages make it clear that Jesus’ pre-existence was a personal one. The fact that before Jesus was born he saw, knew, heard, and was at the side of God, and the fact that he saw things with God, including Abraham, shared glory with God, knew about his kingdom, and was involved in the creation of all things, clearly indicate so. This is very different from Jeremiah and all Christians throughout the centuries, who did not exist before they were born, and who couldn’t see, know, hear, or be at the side of God, and share glory with him, see things with him, or create things with him before they were born. Therefore, there is no justification for saying that John 17:5 is figurative. Remember, unless the Bible clearly specifies otherwise, everything is to be taken literally. Jesus lived and shared glory with the Father before the world existed in a very real sense.

4 b. 1 Peter 1:20

This Bible passage here also does not contradict the fact that Jesus pre-existed. It simply says that he was destined (the English Standard Version says “fore-known”), and was manifested in the last days for our sake. This means that God knew all along that one day Jesus would come to the Earth to suffer and die for our sins on the cross, and be raised on the third day, to bring about redemption, forgiveness, and reconciliation. In fact, Jesus also knew about this all along, and he went on this mission voluntarily because he has both the authority to lay down his life and also to take it back up again:

For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life that I may take it up again. 18 No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This charge I have received from my Father.” (John 10:17–18)

As we can see, there is no biblical justification to teach that Jesus did not pre-exist. This false teaching comes as a result of people making incorrect assumptions, which lead to them misinterpreting the Word of God.

5. Does John 1:1–18 Refer to a Divine Person or Not?

John 1:1–18 reveals that Jesus is the “Word” near the end of the prologue, who existed with God in the beginning, who was God, and through whom the world was created (John 1:1–3). This language mirrors that of Genesis 1:1, and is an explicit teaching of Jesus’ deity. The rest of the passage reveals that Jesus is the Word in whom there is life (Jesus taught that he is the resurrection and the life, see John 11:25–26), who is the true light (Jesus claimed to be the light of the world, see John 8:12), who gave Christians the right to become children of God through faith, who was full of grace and truth, and who became flesh and dwelt among us (John 1:4–17). Also, no one has ever seen God except for Jesus, who is at the Father’s side, and only he has made God known (John 1:18). The full passage says:

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. 4 In him was life, and the life was the light of men. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. 

6 There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7 He came as a witness, to bear witness about the light, that all might believe through him. 8 He was not the light, but came to bear witness about the light. 

9 The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. 11 He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. 12 But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. 

14 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. 15 (John bore witness about him, and cried out, “This was he of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me ranks before me, because he was before me.’”) 16 And from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. 17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father’s side, he has made him known.” (John 1:1–18)

However, despite the fact that John 1 describes the Word as a divine person, Jesus, the Christadelphians disbelieve this. Instead, Mr. Hayward believes that the Word refers to “God’s plan.” He said “The Old Testament had a name for God’s plan. It called it God’s “Wisdom” and he then quotes from Proverbs 8:1–23:

The LORD created me at the beginning of his work, the first of his acts of old. Ages ago I was set up, at the first, before the beginning of the earth. (Proverbs 8:22–23, RSV) (Note: In this passage Wisdom is speaking.)

Commenting on this passage, Mr. Hayward said “In other words, before God started work on this world He drew up His Plan -Wisdom, as the Jews called it.” He then commented on the Greek meaning of the word: “The Greeks – who believed in a god or gods, although not the God of the Bible – gave it a different name. They called it God’s “Word.” The New Bible Dictionary definition of the Greek word for “word” is then given, which says: “both God’s plan and God’s power of creation.”

“John seems to have combined the Greek idea of God’s Word with the Jewish idea of God’s Wisdom.” Mr. Hayward said he believes that to consider the Word to be a living being is a misinterpretation, and that the reason why “he” is used instead of “it” to refer to the “Word”, is because the translators believed he was a living being. “Now if we think of God’s “Plan” instead of His “Word”, and use “it” instead of “he”, this is what we learn from John 1:”

In the beginning was the Plan, and the Plan was with God, and the Plan was God. It was in the beginning with God; all things were made through it, and without it was not anything made that was made. In it was life, and the life was the light of men. . . . And the Plan became flesh and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth; we have beheld his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father.

“These words of John’s summarise the Bible’s teaching beautifully. Jesus did exist in heaven from the beginning, but not as a person. He existed as a great idea in God’s mind, as the very centre of God’s Plan. He did not exist as a person until he was born in Bethlehem. Then, in John’s phrase, “the Plan became flesh.”

5 a. John 1:1–18

Mr. Hayward is right in saying that to the Jews and Greeks, the term “Word” carried different meanings. The “Word” is translated from “Logos” in Greek. The logos was widely used in Greek literature and among the Stoics in a way to describe the principle of divine reason, which caused the natural creation to grow.² It was also developed by Philo of Alexandria’s writings, and understood as the instrument by which the world was created.² However, John’s use of the Word is different; while Philo never thought of the word as a person, denied its pre-existence, and denied its incarnation, John affirmed that he was a person, that he pre-existed, and that he became flesh.² There are also more similarities with the Jewish thought of the Word. According to Jewish thought in Wisdom literature, the Word signified the creative activity of God through his Word of Wisdom (Proverbs 8), and there is also a rabbinic practice of attributing the Torah some agency in creation.²

While it is good to know the different meanings of biblical words, what we must understand is that John used “Logos” in a Christian way, not in a Jewish or Greek way. We should understand this passage in light of the gospel, not Jewish or Greek thought. John brought in this term so that the familiar imagery of the principle of divine reason, which caused the natural creation to grow, could be invoked in the Greeks, and so that in the Jews familiar images of the creative activity of God through his Word of Wisdom could be invoked. However, John then reinterpreted these ideas in a different way to which they were used to, in order to introduce them to Jesus, who is the Creator of all things. He was appealing to what they were used to in order to get their attention and then told them the truth about it and how Jesus fits in.

In all honesty, to rewrite the passages to replace the “Word” with the “Plan” and to replace “he” with “it” makes a dishonest and unreliable translation. Notice how Mr. Hayward did not quote John 1:9–13, which talks about Jesus coming into the world and giving those who believe in him the right to become children of God. If we were to re-write that part in the same way that he did for the others passages, notice what it would say:

The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world. 10 It was in the world, and the world was made through it, yet the world did not know it. 11 It came to its own, and its own people did not receive it. 12 But to all who did receive it, who believed in its name, it gave the right to become children of God, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

Did you notice how this does not make sense? How can the non-personal plan be in the world, and how could the world not have known it? How can the non-personal plan come to its own people, and not be received by them? How can people believe in the non-personal plan’s name or receive it? Finally, how can the non-personal plan give the right for people to become children of God? As you can see, such a reading makes no sense at all.

What does make sense is to believe that the Word is a divine person, just as the Bible says it is—Jesus Christ himself. Jesus is the true light who enlightens everyone. Jesus lived in the world and dwelt among us. The world was made through Jesus, yet many people did not know or recognise him as their Creator. Jesus came to his own people but they did not receive him. He faced trials and was often persecuted and ridiculed. Yet to all who did receive Jesus and who believed in his name, he gave them the right to be children of God, and took their sins upon himself on the cross, thereby cancelling them out.

We know for sure that the “Word” refers to Jesus because the Bible says:

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

As the Bible says, the Word became flesh. This shows us that the Word is a living being. People also beheld the Word’s glory “as of the only Son from the Father.” Jesus is the only Son from the Father. Further confirmation of this can be found in the next verse:

(John bore witness to him, and cried, “This was he of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me ranks before me, for he was before me.’”) (John 1:15, RSV)

As it is written, the Word is “he of whom I [John the Baptist] said, ‘He who comes after me ranks before me, for he was before me.” Further on in the same chapter, the Bible says:

The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! 30 This is he of whom I said, ‘After me comes a man who ranks before me, for he was before me.’ (John 1:29–30, RSV)

As we can see, the Word whom John bore witness to was Jesus Christ, the one who ranks before him because Jesus was before him. In light of all this biblical evidence, it is clear that the Word of John 1 is a living being who is none other than Jesus Christ.

6. Arguments Against Jesus’ Deity

A. Because Jesus Is “a Real Man,” He Can’t Be God

Now let’s address Mr. Hayward’s claim that Jesus is not God, which is the very foundation of his whole argument against Jesus’ pre-existence in his booklet. He writes “Jesus was not an ordinary, sinful man. Let us make no mistake about that. He was a unique man. He was the Son of God. Nevertheless, in a very real sense he was a man and not God Almighty. This does not mean that he ceased to be a man as soon as he went bodily to heaven. The Bible teaches us to think of him as a man, even now. Long after Jesus had risen from the dead and ascended to heaven, the New Testament was making statements like this:”

God’s grace is much greater, and so is his free gift to so many men through the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ…. How much greater is the result of what was done by the one man, Jesus Christ… many will be put right with God as the result of the obedience of the one man. (Romans 5:15–19, Today’s English Version) 

There is one God, and there is one mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus. (1 Timothy 2:5, Today’s English Version)

“So Jesus really is a man.” Afterwards, he quotes from a book by a former Bishop of Woolwich, Dr. Robinson, who spoke about how (supposedly) most Christians view Jesus: “Jesus was not a man born and bred, he was God for a limited period taking part in a charade. He looked like a man, but underneath he was God dressed up – like Father Christmas.” Mr. Hayward commented that while most Christians would find this offensive, Christians would still believe it is a fair statement on church teaching, and then concluded: “If Jesus was really God … then he was never a real man, but a Divine Person dressed up in human flesh. But the New Testament disagrees. It describes Jesus as a man.”

Biblical Response

While it is true that Jesus is in a real sense a man, he is also in a real sense God Almighty. Colossians 2:9 tells us:

For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily, (Colossians 2:9)

This passage teaches that Jesus is deity in bodily form. What we see here are the two natures of Jesus: God and man. “The whole fullness of deity” means that Jesus is 100% God, not 50%, or any other percentage. He is fully man and fully God. Therefore, Jesus never stopped being God when he came to Earth. Jesus has always been God, but when the right time came, he became flesh and took on a human body to take upon himself the sins of the whole world for our salvation. Philippians 2:5–8 sums this up brilliantly:

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. 8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. (Philippians 2:5–8)

This passage tells us a lot about Jesus. Firstly, Jesus “was in the form of God.” This means that he is, in fact, God Almighty. This is clear from the fact that Jesus took “the form of a servant“, which obviously means he became a servant, and was then found “in human form“, which again, obviously means that he became a human. Therefore, clearly to be in “the form of God” means to be God. We are also told that this is not figurative, or that it is simply referring to the “disposition of Jesus’ mind”, as Mr. Hayward erroneously argues in his booklet, because it is talking about the very real, voluntary decision that Jesus made in not counting “equality with God a thing to be grasped“, so that he could make “himself nothing” for our sake, to “humble himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross” for our salvation. Here, Paul is clearly using a real example to show us Jesus’ true humility, and he calls us to “Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus.” The greatest example of humility is God becoming flesh to die for our sins to save us. This was what Paul was showing us here.

In Old Testament times, the prophet Joel said:

And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved. For in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be those who escape, as the LORD has said, and among the survivors shall be those whom the LORD calls. (Joel 2:32)

Joel was talking about God Almighty, and used his personal name here, Yahweh (This is what “the LORD” means in this context). Because of Israel’s many sins against Yahweh, and because they abandoned him, a plague of locusts was sent to their land as punishment, so that the people of Israel could repent of their sins, and then turn back to the Lord their God, and call upon him, who alone can save them. Paul reflected on this thought and mentioned it in his epistle to the Romans, while he was writing about Jesus:

because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. 11 For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.” 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. 13 For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” (Romans 10:9–13)

As shown, at the end Paul directly quoted Joel 2:32 and applied it to Jesus. This is wonderful news. In these last days, Yahweh, God Almighty has now revealed himself to us as Jesus Christ, on whom we all call for salvation, and who graciously bestows his riches on all who call on him. Jesus is the same God Almighty who has always been called upon and who continues to be called upon today for salvation.

B. Because Jesus was Born, He Can’t Be God

Mr. Hayward then argues that because Jesus’ birth describes the beginning of a new human life (Luke 1:30–35), he cannot have come to Earth as a Divine Person. He also argues that if Jesus were a Divine Person, millions of years older than Mary, that he can’t have truly been her son.

Biblical Response

As we have seen in the Bible passages above, Jesus is very clearly God in human flesh. Therefore, we must understand the Bible by looking at the Bible’s teachings as a whole, and not base it on human reasoning. The Bible tells us that Jesus is the Word who was God (John 1:1), who became flesh and dwelt among us (John 1:14), and that the way in which Jesus was sent to Earth from Heaven (John 6:38) was through his mother, Mary. Mary really was the mother of Jesus. But Jesus’ birth was special: he was not conceived by natural means, but by the Holy Spirit. In other words, Jesus was not the product of his parents’ DNA like other human children, but he was placed in Mary’s womb by the power of the Holy Spirit, and then grew up like any other child, except he was holy (set apart and sinless) unlike other children (Luke 1:35). Also, just because Jesus eternally pre-existed as God Almighty doesn’t mean that Mary can’t have been his mother. It simply means that while he dwelt among us on Earth, Jesus had a mother who gave birth to him and took care of him throughout his life.

C. Because Jesus Grew Wiser, He Can’t Be God

Mr. Hayward then argues that because in Jesus’ childhood Luke explains that he “increased in wisdom and in stature, and in favour with God and man” (Luke 2:52), this means he can’t be God. After all, how can God grow wiser and increase in favour with himself? he asks.

Biblical Response

We need to remember that although Jesus was in the form of God, which means that he is God, there was a point in time in which Jesus decided that he would not use his equality with God to his own advantage and made himself nothing, coming down to Earth in the form of a servant and a human (Philippians 2:5–7). This transition involved Jesus being born of a woman, under the Law (Galatians 4:4–5). Therefore, while Jesus was still divine, he willingly put upon himself human limitations temporarily so that he could live as a true human. This was why Jesus, as a real child, had to grow in wisdom and stature. He voluntarily allowed this.

Jesus did this because in order to be our merciful High Priest, and in order to be the propitiation (the offering to satisfy the righteous wrath of God against sinners) for the sins of the world, he had to become like us in every respect (Hebrews 2:14–17), except for the fact that he was still sinless, set apart, and holy (Hebrews 4:15). Also, Jesus did not increase in favour with himself, but with his Father in Heaven. As John 1:1 teaches, although the Word was with God (the Father), the Word was God (of God’s essence), so there is a distinction between the Persons in the Holy Trinity.

D. Because Jesus Was Tempted, He Can’t Be God

Mr. Hayward then argues that because “God cannot be tempted with evil” (James 1:13), and because Jesus was “in every respect … tempted as we are” (Hebrews 4:15), that Jesus can’t be God. He also argues that because Jesus had to pray “Not my will, but yours, be done” (Luke 22:42), it cannot make sense for him to be God.

Biblical Response

We need to be aware that although the Bible does say that God cannot be tempted with evil, Psalm 106:13–14 records an instance of when the Jews tempted God in the wilderness:

They soon forgat his works; they waited not for his counsel: 14 but lusted exceedingly in the wilderness, and tempted God in the desert. (Psalm 106:13–14, AV)

Therefore, we need to distinguish between the ways in which humans are tempted, and the way in which God and Jesus were tempted. James 1:13–15 says that for ordinary people, temptations come as a result of people being lured and enticed by their own desires, and that desire, when it has conceived, gives birth to sin, and that when sin is fully grown it brings forth death. This was not the way in which God the Father and Jesus were tempted. Jesus and God the Father are incapable of sinning, and so when they were “put to the test”, which is another way of saying “tempted”, they were not able to give in. Clearly, then, when James said that God cannot be tempted with evil, he meant that God cannot give in to evil temptations presented to him from sinful beings. In the case of Jesus, in his years on Earth he could not give in to evil, not only because he is God in flesh, but also because he had the Holy Spirit within him, and it was through the Spirit that Jesus offered himself without blemish to God (Hebrews 9:14). Although Satan made Jesus suffer by tempting him (Hebrews 2:18), he still had no claim on him (John 14:30–31).

We can expect that Jesus, who in his pre-existent state decided to make himself nothing by taking human and servant form (Philippians 2:5–7), was afraid of torture and death on the cross. As we have established earlier, although Jesus is God, he is at the same time distinct from the Father in personhood, but not in nature or essence. Jesus, who was born of a woman and under the Law, could therefore pray to his Father in Heaven (Galatians 4:4–5), for that is good according to the Law.

E. Because Jesus Became Perfect, He Can’t Be God

Mr. Hayward then argues that because Jesus “learned obedience through what he suffered“, was “made perfect” (Hebrews 5:8–9) and made “perfect through suffering” (Hebrews 2:10), he cannot be God.

Biblical Response

These verses are talking about salvation. Being a man, Jesus had his limitations. There were times when he did offer up tearful prayers to God because he suffered (Hebrews 5:7). The context of Hebrews 2:10 says:

But we see him who for a little while was made lower than the angels, namely Jesus, crowned with glory and honour because of the suffering of death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone. 10 For it was fitting that he, for whom and by whom all things exist, in bringing many sons to glory, should make the founder of their salvation perfect through suffering. (Hebrews 2:9–10)

The context of the passage is that Jesus was crowned with glory and honour because he suffered death, and has become the founder of salvation. This is the sense in which Jesus had to be made perfect. Jesus could only be the perfect founder of salvation for all people through his suffering and death on the cross, whereon he took upon himself the sins of the world (1 Peter 2:24, NASB). If we look at Hebrews 5:8–9, we see the same theme:

Although he was a son, he learned obedience through what he suffered. 9 And being made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey him, (Hebrews 5:8–9)

As a man, with the help of the Holy Spirit, Jesus learned to remain obedient to God the Father’s plan of salvation throughout the many trials he faced, which were all there to prepare him for the cross. Because Jesus was made perfect after all those trials and his final trial: death on the cross, Jesus became the source of eternal salvation, and consequently, he was highly exalted and given the name above every name (Philippians 2:911). Thus the perfection here is referring to his sacrifice for humanity upon the cross as our Saviour, not his nature or character.

F. Because Jesus Died, He Can’t Be God

Mr. Hayward then argues that because God cannot die (Daniel 12:71 Timothy 6:16), and because Jesus died (John 19:30), and poured out his soul to death (Isaiah 53:12), this means that Jesus cannot be God.

Biblical Response

As Mr. Hayward has correctly pointed out, part of God’s divine nature is immortality, and as common sense tells us, humans do not possess immortality. However, Jesus is different from humans in many different ways. As we have established, the Bible calls Jesus God (eg. Romans 10:9–13Philippians 2:5–8John 1:1, 14). However, the Bible also calls Jesus a man (1 Timothy 2:5). What we see, therefore, is that Jesus has two natures: he has a divine and human nature. He is truly God and truly man. Hebrews 1:3 tells us that Jesus has the exact imprint of God’s nature (Hebrews 1:3). This clearly tells us that Jesus has a divine nature. Colossians 2:9 tells us that in Jesus the fullness of deity dwells bodily (Colossians 2:9). The two natures of Jesus co-exist within him. When Jesus died upon the cross, his human nature died, but his divine nature did not. Jesus’ divine nature continued on living apart from his body, which was dead, and went to the spirits in prison who did not obey God in Noah’s time, to proclaim his victory over death (1 Peter 3:18–20).

G. Because Jesus Became Great After His Death and Resurrection, He Can’t Be God

The last argument that Mr. Hayward puts forth against the deity of Christ is that because Jesus became great after his life on Earth, i.e. he now sits at the right hand of God (Psalm 110:1Hebrews 1:13), he can’t have been great before, and that God only made him great because he deserved it (Hebrews 2:9Psalm 91:14Psalm 45:7Philippians 2:8–9). Therefore, they reason, Jesus is just a special man, but not God.

Biblical Response

It is not true to say that Jesus only became great after his life on Earth. In Philippians 2:5–8 we are told that although Jesus is in the fullest sense God Almighty, he voluntarily decided to humble himself, by taking on an earthly body, in order to fulfill the plan of salvation, by dying for our sins on the cross and being raised again (Philippians 2:5–8). Because Jesus did this, God the Father rightfully bestowed upon him the highest honour and exalted him to his previous position, only this time the name of Jesus is now above every name (Philippians 2:9–11). However, there are more passages which testify to Jesus’ greatness while he dwelt among us.

In his earthly ministry, Jesus was worshipped on multiple occasions, e.g. he was worshipped by the wise men when he was born (Matthew 2:11), by the disciples in a boat after he walked on water (Matthew 14:33), by a man who was formerly blind (John 9:3738), by the disciples again before he ascended back to Heaven (Matthew 28:16–17), etc. When Satan tried to tempt Jesus into worshipping him for the riches of the world, Jesus answered him that God alone is to be worshipped (Luke 4:7–8). Clearly, then, because Jesus allowed himself to be worshipped, he was claiming to be God. When Cornelius fell down at Peter the apostle’s feet to worship him, Peter would not allow it: “Stand up; I too am a man” he said (Acts 10:25–26). When John fell down at an angel’s feet to worship him, he replied: “You must not do that! I am a fellow servant with you and your brothers who hold to the testimony of Jesus. Worship God.” (Revelation 19:9–10) Clearly, then, Jesus was more than just a man; he was a divine man. Jesus is God Almighty.

During his earthly ministry, Jesus said that the Father was with him, and had never left him alone, because he always does the things that are pleasing to him (John 8:29). Jesus is so great, so perfect, and so holy, that God the Father has never once left him alone or punished him for wrongdoing, even during his earthly ministry. When Jesus was baptised, Heaven was opened, the Holy Spirit descended upon him, and God the Father announced that Jesus is his beloved Son, with whom he is well pleased (Mark 1:9–11). During his earthly ministry, Jesus was transfigured before Peter, James, and his brother John, on a mountain, where his face shone like the sun, his clothes became white as light, where Elijah and Moses appeared and spoke with him, and where God the Father said: “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him.” These events explicitly display Jesus’ greatness even before he ascended back into Heaven at the right hand of God.

When Jesus was riding to Jerusalem on a colt, the crowds spread cloaks and leafy branches on the road, praised God, and rejoiced, saying (concerning Jesus): “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!” (Mark 1:1–20Matthew 21:1–10Luke 19:28–40). The crowds clearly held Jesus in a very high regard, because they were singing praises to him. This definitely shows his greatness. When Jesus prayed that the Father would glorify his name, he was publicly answered (John 12:28–30). Lastly, Jesus claimed while on Earth, that the Father has given all judgement to him, so that everyone may honour him in the same way that they honour the Father (John 5:22–23). The very fact that Jesus is honoured the same way as God the Father is honoured is simply astounding. In summary, the Bible does teach the greatness of Jesus even before he was resurrected and ascended to the right hand of God. The Bible clearly teaches the deity of Christ.

7. Conclusion

The Bible’s testimony is clear: Jesus is both true God and true man, who came down from Heaven. Mr. Hayward’s and the Christadelphians’ claims that because Jesus is really a man, he can’t be God nor could he have come down from Heaven, are false according to the Bible. Because this has been established, Mr. Hayward’s argument has now fallen apart. This was the very foundation of why he wrongly said that Jesus’ words were figurative about his and the Bible’s claims of him coming down from Heaven in the first place. Redemption of Humanity doesn’t doubt that Mr. Hayward and the Christadelphians sincerely want to honour Jesus and worship God properly. Unfortunately, though, their unbiblical presuppositions have led them to denying crucial, essential biblical teachings. Jesus definitely did come from Heaven as he really said. It all comes down to whether you choose to believe him or not.

Rebuttal to the Following Christadelphian Booklet

1. Hayward, A 1975, God So Loved the World, accessed 6 March 2017, <http://www.god-so-loved-the-world.org/english/hayward_didjesusreallycomedownfromheaven.htm>

Reference List

2. Carson, D A, France, R T, Motyer, J A, Wenham, G J (eds) 1953, New Bible Commentary, Inter-Varsity Press, Nottingham

3. Blue Letter Bible, accessed 7 March 2017, <https://www.blueletterbible.org/kjv/jde/1/1/s_1167001>

All scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers unless specified otherwise.

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