Some years back I read that someone said that Jesus Christ never claimed to be God. I was astounded that anyone would say or think that. Sure, He never stood on a mountaintop and said, “I am God” in those exact words. But He did proclaim His Deity. The next time I read through the New Testament, I put a “C” (for “claim”) next to every verse I found where Christ claimed something about Himself. Here’s what I found:
1) When the devil tempted Him to throw Himself off the pinacle of the temple if He was the Son of God, Jesus answered, “Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.” I think He was referring not only to the situation of doing something foolish and expecting God to intervene, but I think He was also referring to Himself as God who should not be tempted. (Matthew 4:5-7)
2) He claimed the authority and the ability to forgive sins.
Matthew 9:6: But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins, (then saith he to the sick of the palsy,) Arise, take up thy bed, and go unto thine house. (In Mark 2:5-11 and Luke 5:18-25, those listening to that claim acknowledged that only God can forgive sins, but they did not accept that Jesus was God: they thought He was blaspheming. His subsequent healing of the man was to give them something they could see that demonstrated Who He was.)
3) He claimed to be greater than the temple.
Matthew 12:6: But I say unto you, That in this place is one greater than the temple.
4) He claimed to be greater than Jonah.
Matthew 12:41: The men of Nineveh shall rise in judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: because they repented at the preaching of Jonas; and, behold, a greater than Jonas is here.
5) He claimed to be greater than Solomon.
Matthew 12:42: The queen of the south shall rise up in the judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: for she came from the uttermost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and, behold, a greater than Solomon is here.
6) He confirmed that Peter’s proclamation of Him as the Christ, the Son of God, was revealed to Peter by the Father.
Matthew 16:15: He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am?
16 And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.
17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.
7) He claimed to be the Lord of the Sabbath (in response to the Pharisees fussing about his activities on the Sabbath).
Mark 2:29: Therefore the Son of man is Lord also of the sabbath.
8 ) He proclaimed His purpose in coming was to give Himself as a ransom.
Mark 10:45: For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.
9) He claimed to be the Christ.*
Mark 14: 61 But he held his peace, and answered nothing. Again the high priest asked him, and said unto him, Art thou the Christ, the Son of the Blessed?
62 And Jesus said, I am: and ye shall see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.
63 Then the high priest rent his clothes, and saith, What need we any further witnesses?
10) He claimed to be the One whom Moses, the prophets, and the Psalms foretold and the One in whose name repentance and remission of sins should be preached.
Luke 24: 44-47: And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me.
Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures, And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behooved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.
11) He claimed to be in heaven even while He was speaking to someone on earth, indicating omnipresence.
John 3:13: And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.
12) He claimed that whoever believed in Him would not perish but have everlasting life.
John 3:14-16: And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up. That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
(Also John 6:47; 10:28-29)
13) He claimed to give “living water.”
John 4:10, 13-14: Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water….Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.
John 7:37-39: In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)
14) He claimed to be the Messiah.*
John 4: 25-26: The woman saith unto him, I know that Messias cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come, he will tell us all things. Jesus saith unto her, I that speak unto thee am he.
15) He claimed to be the Son of God many times over: here are two examples:
John 5: 17 But Jesus answered them, My Father worketh hitherto, and I work.
18 Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he not only had broken the sabbath, but said also that God was his Father, making himself equal with God.
(The reaction He got indicates they understood what He meant in claiming to be the Son of God.)
John 9: 35 Jesus heard that they had cast him out; and when he had found him, he said unto him, Dost thou believe on the Son of God?
36 He answered and said, Who is he, Lord, that I might believe on him?
37 And Jesus said unto him, Thou hast both seen him, and it is he that talketh with thee.
38 And he said, Lord, I believe. And he worshipped him.
(See also John 10:36)
16) He claimed that whoever heard His word and believed on Him that sent Him would not come into condemnation, but would pass from death unto life.
John 5:24: Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.
17) He claimed that the Scriptures testified of Him.
John 5:39: Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.
18 ) He claimed to be the bread of life.
John 6:35: And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.
John 6:48: I am that bread of life.
John 6:51: I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.
19) He claimed He would raise up those who believe on Him at the last day.
John 6:39-40: And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day. And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.
20) He claimed to be the light of the world.
John 8:12: Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.
(Also John 9:5)
21) He claimed to be from above and not of this world.
John 8:23: And he said unto them, Ye are from beneath; I am from above: ye are of this world; I am not of this world.
22) He claimed that if whoever does not believe in Him would die in their sins.
John 8: 24: I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins.
23) He claimed to be not only before Abraham but to be the “I am” who spoke to Moses (Exodus 3:13-14):
John 8:58: Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.
(The reaction to this statement shows they knew exactly what He meant [though they did not accept it] and to me this statement is one of the strongest proofs of Christ’s deity.)
24) He claimed to be the door of the sheep.
John 10: 7-9: Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep. All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.
25) He claimed He came that we might have life, and have it more abundantly.
John 10:10: The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
26) He claimed He is the good shepherd.
John 10: 11, 14: I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep. I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine.
27) He claimed to be one with the Father.
John 10:30: I and my Father are one.
28 ) He foretold His betrayal so that when it happened they would know who He was.
John 13:18-19: I speak not of you all: I know whom I have chosen: but that the scripture may be fulfilled, He that eateth bread with me hath lifted up his heel against me. Now I tell you before it come, that, when it is come to pass, ye may believe that I am he.
29) He claimed to be the true vine without Whom we can do nothing.
John 15: 1, 5-6: I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman. I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.
30) He claimed that we have peace in Him and that He had overcome the world.
John 16: 33: These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.
31) He claimed that eternal life is knowing the Father and Himself.
John 17:3: And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.
*For an explanation of what is meant by the terms “Messiah” or “Christ,” please go here and put the term “Messiah” in the search box. (I couldn’t get the direct link to the definition to work.)
Well, I think that adds up, don’t you? If I have overlooked any, please let me know in your comments. Some of these make more sense and have greater meaning in context. There are other things that attest to Christ’s Deity: the fulfillment of prophecy (something I did at the same time as this study was to also put a “P” in the margin beside every verse in the gospels and the first few chapters of Acts which spoke of some prophecy being fulfilled), His works, the testimony of others, the testimony of the Father (”This is my beloved Son in Whom I am well-pleased.” )
I hope and pray that any of you who have not recognized Him as Lord and Saviour would believe on Him even today, and I hope that the faith of believers will be strengthened by these truths.
(I am submitting this to Thursday Thirteen for the day though there are more than thirteen claims.)