Absolute Power and Authority
The founder and leader of Christianity wields absolute power and authority over everything including everlasting life. “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).
Yes, Jesus has an exclusive monopoly over salvation and he emphatically states this claim in John 14:6. “I am way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me”.
This is a verified truism that no religious leaders had ever and will ever make such an emphatic statement except Jesus Christ. His utterances were very provocative to both Jewish and Roman authorities. Why could such a statement be made by the first born of Joseph and Mary? The answer is simple. It is only somebody with an exclusively divine birth like Jesus Christ who can make such unequalled statements. It is in this sense that Jesus made His claim of sonship of man and also of God. Bible records the following claims that Jesus made to which nobody has ever been able to establish the contrary.
“I tell you the truth, Jesus answered, before Abraham was born, I am” (John 8:58 NIV)
“I and my father are one” (John 10:30 KJV).
But Jesus replied, “My Father is always working, and so am I. So the Jewish leaders tried the harder to find a way to kill him. For he not only broke the Sabbath, he called God his Father, hereby making himself equal with God” (John 5:17-19 NLT).
Jesus said, “I AM. And you will see the Son of man seated in the place of power at God’s right hand and coming in clouds of heaven” (Mark 14:62NLT)
As if this provocation is not enough Jesus exhibited his supreme authority to the extent that He could delegate his authority to His disciples. There had never been anyone like him; neither will there ever be one. Never has there been a man of authority who could transform the sexually immoral, idolaters, adulterers, male or female prostitutes, homosexuals, thieves, the greedy, drunkards, slanderers, swindlers, demon possessed into saints. In His name and by the spirit of God, sinners are washed, sanctified and justified.
“And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God” (1 Cor. 6:11 KJV).
By the supreme authority of Jesus all those who believe and dwell in Him are granted the privilege to become the children of God; becoming new creations.
“But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name….Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new” (John 1:12, 13; 2Cor 5:17 KJV).
To buttress the fact that Jesus Christ is the only religious leader who has ever claimed to be deity and the only individual ever who has convinced a greater portion of the world that He is God, take notice of the following also.
- His pre-existence was affirmed in the Old Testament: “Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: the virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel” (Isaiah 7:14 NIV).
“For us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6 NIV).
- Jesus himself confirmed his pre-existence:“Jesus said to them, ‘Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM” (John 8:58 NKJV).
- The Apostles proclaimed his pre-existence: “He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist” (Colossians 1:15-17 NKJV).
- He received honour due to God: “They (wise men from the east) entered the house and saw the child with his mother, Mary, and they bowed and worshipped him” (Matthew 2:11 NLT).
“And behold, a leper came and worshipped him, saying “Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean” (Matthew 8:2 NKJV)
“When Jesus heard what had happened, he found the man and asked, “Do you believe in the Son of Man?” The man answered “Who is he, sir? I want to believe in him” You have seen him, Jesus said, and he is speaking to you! Yes, Lord, I believe, the man said. And he worshipped Jesus”. (John 9:35-38 NLT).
“When they climbed back into the boat, the wind stopped. Then the disciples worshipped him, ‘You really are the Son of God!”(Matthew 14:33 NLT).
Jesus in his encounter with Satan made this statement, “Away Satan! For it written; “Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only” (Matthew 4:10, Luke 4:8). If he who gave this instruction could allow and accept worship then he must be God. There is no contradiction.
- He had power to forgive sins.
“When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “Son, your sins are forgiven” (Mark 2:5 NIV).
“Then Jesus said to her, “Your sins are forgiven” (Luke 7:48 NIV).
- He had the title of deity
“We are not stoning you for any of these, replied the Jews, but for blasphemy, because you, a mere man, claim to be God……………… Why then do you accuse me of blasphemy because I said, ‘I am the Son of God’? Do not believe me unless I do what my Father does. But if I do it, even though you do not believe me, believe the miracles, that you may know and understand that the Father is in me, and I in the Father” (John 10:33-38 NIV).
“Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God”. Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by man, but by my Father in heaven” (Matthew 16:16 NIV).
- Besides the claim of being the Son of God, Jesus asserted that He is the Son of Man.
“Knowing their thoughts, Jesus said, ‘Why do you entertain evil thoughts in your hearts? Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven’, or to say, ‘Get up and walk’? But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins …. Then he said to the paralytic ‘Get up, take your mat and go home.’ And the man got up and went home” (Matthew 9:4-6 NIV).
“As they were coming down the mountain, Jesus instructed them, Don’t tell anyone what you have seen, until the Son of Man has been raised from the dead” (Matthew 17:9 NIV).
“However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?” (Luke 18:8 NIV)
- He has authority to execute judgment
“In addition, the Father judges no one. Instead he has given the Son absolute authority to judge, so that everyone will honour the Son, just as they honour the Father” (John 5:22-23 NLT).
“I can do nothing on my own. I judge as God tells me. Therefore my judgment is just, because I carry out the will of the one who sent me, not my own will” (John 5:30 NLT).
- This message is culled out of the soon to be published book “Why I am a Christian” authored by Ps. K. Amewuga Adzei.