For roughly 2,000 years, people have been asking, debating and even killing over the question of if Jesus is God. Even within Christianity, there are those that cannot agree upon Jesus’ true identity. Some Christians say that he is a literal son of God, the same as a man is a son of his father. There are those Christians that say Jesus was the first thing that God created. These Christians see no difference between Jesus and the angels. Additionally, there are the Christians that say that Jesus is part of what is known as the Trinity, and that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are all the same one God. Outside of Christianity, there are those that believe Jesus was nothing more than a myth or legend.
If a person believes that Jesus was nothing more than a myth, it can be said it would be reasonable to assume there was never a historical person that we call Jesus. However, there are writings other than Biblical that make reference to a historical Jesus and Christians. People such as Thallus, Phlegon, Suetonius, Celsus and Clement of Rome all mentioned Jesus and/or Christians in their writings. Gaius Caecilius, better known as Pliny the Younger, was not only the first to acknowledge Christianity as separate from Judaism, but it can be said that he was responsible for the persecution of Christians that took place in the second and third centuries. Lucian who lived between 120 and 180 AD, was a Greek that was known for speaking scornfully when it came to Christ and Christians. It can be said this affirms both Jesus and Christians were real, historical people, and not fictional characters.
When it comes to the Bible, there are various verses that can be used to support the belief that Jesus was God. The book of John starts out by saying, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men.” Further on in chapter one, John writes, “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.” Verses 18 and 19 in chapter one reads, “For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father’s side, he has made him known.”
In regarding if Jesus is the Christ, it is written in the book of John: So the Jews gathered around him and said to him, “How long will you keep us in suspense? If you are the Christ, tell us plainly.” Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in my Father’s name bear witness about me, but you do not believe because you are not among my sheep. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. I and the Father are one.” The Jews picked up stones again to stone him. Jesus answered them, “I have shown you many good works from the Father; for which of them are you going to stone me?” The Jews answered him, “It is not for a good work that we are going to stone you but for blasphemy, because you, being a man, make yourself God.” Jesus answered them, “Is it not written in your Law, ‘I said, you are gods’? If he called them gods to whom the word of God came—and Scripture cannot be broken— do you say of him whom the Father consecrated and sent into the world, ‘You are blaspheming,’ because I said, ‘I am the Son of God’? If I am not doing the works of my Father, then do not believe me; but if I do them, even though you do not believe me, believe the works, that you may know and understand that the Father is in me and I am in the Father.
Matthew wrote in his book: And behold, some of the scribes said to themselves, “This man is blaspheming.” But Jesus, knowing their thoughts, said, “Why do you think evil in your hearts? For which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Rise and walk’? But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins” —he then said to the paralytic— “Rise, pick up your bed and go home.” And he rose and went home. When the crowds saw it, they were afraid, and they glorified God, who had given such authority to men.
It is without saying a person can find verses to use as support that person’s belief system. That is why it is so important not only to read the Bible, but get to know the proper context of what was written. It is good to know who was the author, who the author was addressing and the what was the subject. It is also good to know if what was written was historical, poetic, a letter, or a prophecy. It is my own personal belief that it is beyond our capability as humans to be able to fully make sense of God. We are finite, thus our thinking is the same. With that said, God is infinite. Therefore, our finite minds are not able to fully comprehend the vastness that encompasses all in which is God.