Have you heard it said, ‘Jesus is not God because He was made by God?’ That is Jesus did not exist prior to being brought into this world by God the Father, and through his life of sinlessness then attained the status of great prophet. There are quite a few religions and people with this mindset, and their entitled to believe as they see fit.
To Err Is Human:
However I would like to touch on how this thinking results. Let’s take a classic example like Hebrews 1:4, “Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they”. It is easy to read this verse and then infer that Jesus was created by God and thus by that thought; deduce that Jesus was not God (who has always existed). How can someone be God, if they were created by God? Sounds pretty reasonable and valid assumption to me.
However could it be that we missing an intricate piece of the puzzle? Consider these three principles which could better guide us to the right answer about these words “Being made”.
Principle #1: When the alarm bells ring take action
Firstly it is natural to come to a portion of scripture, and then read it and come away potentially having concerns about God and the Bible. Why do these two portions say different things? Or how could the bible even say that? The thing to recognize and accept is that we are human. Prone to quick judgements and assumptions. However when we do feel this way the worst action we can take is to do nothing. The best course of action would rather be to resolve it immediately. Pray it through. Study it out. Speak to someone who is strong in the faith. Google it. Any one of these will do, so long as you do something to bring it to bed.
Principle #2: Ask yourself, is there a higher biblical principal being violated here?
The words “Being made”, speak to something being formed by materials or created. And this is the part that is causing the discomfort and the alarm bells to go off. Why? Because it is clashing with our current biblical principle that Jesus Christ is God. So when something is clashing, let’s apply the train of thought to it’s full conclusion. Test it!
Principle #3: Test the reasoning
If Jesus Christ is not God, then large portions of the Bible would be invalid (Matthew 1:23, Isaiah 9:6, Isaiah 40:10,11, Revelation 1:7-18; Revelation 2:8, John 1:1-3; John 5:17-18; Colossians 2:9; Philippians 2:5-7 and much more). It’s not sound reasoning to look at a complex commonly misunderstood verse and weigh it up against a whole subset of plain and simple verses and then deduce a new principle or fundamental from it.
Secondly, if we read Hebrews 2:9-10; “But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man. For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.”. If Jesus was an ordinary man, and he died to atone for our sins, how would that even be possible? How could a man by the goodness of his life atone for thousands of years of men’s sin? The simple answer – he can’t. For our salvation to be perfect as described in verse 10; we needed God to manifest Himself as a man. Thus an eternal God crucified, pays a sufficiently high and eternal price for the sins of the world.
Our reasoning here has clearly failed. It thus must be that Jesus is God and was God. But then how do we explain “Being made”. Simply, that it speaks to the timeframe on earth where Jesus Christ was created, born of Mary by immaculate conception. The confusion was brought about by a natural comparison being made in verse 4, where Jesus is being compared to the angels, and thus our minds naturally assumed the timeframe and location to heavenly.
The initial assumption based on verse 4 may have been over-simplistic…..but in this simplicity we were able to see how easily it is to open up ourselves to the wrong kind of thinking. We were also able to derive some principles for the future that could steer and guide us.
I hope you were blessed.