The following are quotes from New Testament Writers Teaching Jesus is the Creator, and the Word of God (The Father’s regent, mouthpiece, miracle performer and redeemer).
These verses are confirmation of the Jewish Binitarianism taught during the time period before and after Jesus, until about 200AD. This ancient theology taught that there were two entities in the Bible who used the Divine Name.
The 1st is God the Father, the other is the Word of God.
The New Testament author’s used this preexisting theology to preach the Gospel throughout the New Testament by applying the name and duties of The Word to Jesus.
1 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,[a] 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 gives light to 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,[b] and his own people[c] 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[d] from the Father, full of grace and truth.
Most people do not realize that the Apostle John was actually using terminology familiar to 1st Century Jewish people. It was familiar, because it was language read in the Targums in the Synagogue every week. What John was doing by stating his first sentence in the manner was very similar to the technique used at the time (and today in some Orthodox Jewish sects), whereby one person would recite the first verse of a Psalm, for example, and the students (or members of the Synagogue), would begin to recite the rest of the Psalm.
Jesus did this as is recorded in the New Testament. The hearers should have understood to recite the entirety of Psalm 22 in response, “And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, ‘Eli, Eli, lama sabachtani?” that is, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?'” Matthew 27:46
Using this technique, John the Apostle, was calling on Jewish familiarity with the Aramaic Tagums and calling them to apply what they learned from the Targums about The Word of the Lord, to Yeshua/Jesus himself. John was clearly referring to passages that would have been read in the Synagogue throughout the course of a year in 1st Century Judaism, calling attention to the passages mentioning The Word of the Lord. Jewish theology of the period understood that The Word of the Lord was a “lesser Yahweh”. In other words, Yeshua/Jesus was the God of Israel who interacted with humanity and creation directly, performing miracles, signs and wonders and simply speaking to humans.
The “Greater Yahweh” was understood to be an INVISIBLE SPIRIT that exists only in the Heaven. The “lesser Yahweh” did the will of and spoke the words of the “Greater Yahweh, representing Him on Earth..
Jesus’ half-brother Judah did something similar to this technique i mentioned when he said:
Now I want to remind you, although you once fully knew it, that Jesus, who saved a people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe.
The Apostle Paul did something similar when he called he called his listeners to remind themselves of Israel’s Exodus story by saying:
1 Corinthians 10:1-10
For I do not want you to be unaware, brothers,[a] 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 Messiah.
5 Nevertheless, with most of them God was not pleased, for they were overthrown[b] in the wilderness.
6 Now these things took place as examples for us, that we might not desire evil as they did. 7 Do not be idolaters as some of them were; as it is written, “The people sat down to eat and drink and rose up to play.” 8 We must not indulge in sexual immorality as some of them did, and twenty-three thousand fell in a single day.
9 We m ust not put Messiah[c] to the test, as some of them did and were destroyed by serpents, 10 nor grumble, as some of them did and were destroyed by the Destroyer.
Paul doubles down on his position that Jesus is active as the God figure and Messiah in the Old Testament when he said:
13 He (God) has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
15 He (Jesus) is the image of the Invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16 For by[f]him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. 17 And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. 19 For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell…
And in case we were still having trouble comprehending that Jesus as the Word of God, being God, acting as God was involved directly with creation, Paul says it more clearly along with Old Testament quotes in:
Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, 2 but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world.3 He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high,4 having become as much superior to angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs.
5 For to which of the angels did God ever say,
“You are my Son,
today I have begotten you”?
“I will be to him a father,
and he shall be to me a son”?
6 And again, when he brings the firstborn into the world, he says,
“Let all God’s angels worship him.”
7 Of the angels he says,
“He makes his angels winds,
and his ministers a flame of fire.”
8 But of the Son he says,
“Your throne, O God, is forever and ever,
the scepter of uprightness is the scepter of your kingdom.
9 You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness;
therefore God, your God, has anointed you
with the oil of gladness beyond your companions.”
“You, Lord, laid the foundation of the earth in the beginning,
and the heavens are the work of your hands;
11 they will perish, but you remain;
they will all wear out like a garment,
12 like a robe you will roll them up,
like a garment they will be changed.[a]
But you are the same,
and your years will have no end.”
13 And to which of the angels has he ever said,
“Sit at my right hand
until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet”?
This is the theological and social context of the 1st Century Jewish mind that first encountered the Apostle John, Paul and Jude’s words.
The Targumim (that’s plural for more than one Targum), are authoritative Aramaic translations of the books of the Bible. They were read in the synagogue along with the official scrolls of the Hebrew Bible, known as the Torah (The Book of Moses / Pentateuch / Genesis – Deuteronomy) and Häf-tôräh (Selected Readings from the Prophets & Writings). There have been fragments of Targumim found among in the Dead Sea Scrolls, meaning they were used in pre-Christian times.
In the days of Jesus and his Apostles, the Targums were read in the synagogue right alongside the Hebrew Bible everywhere in the world where there were Jewish people. Those Jewish people and then the Non-Jewish people who became followers of Jesus and went to regular synagogue- – all heard the Targum read, then the Hebrew Bible read, then Heard the Targum passages read again in every service!
Here are some English translations of some of the Targum passages they heard, and to which John, Paul and Jude were all saying Jesus fulfilled:
Micah 5:2, this is what it says in Targum Jonathan:
“And You Bethlehem Ephrata, you who were too small to be numbered among the thousands of the house of Judah, From you shall come forth before Me The Messiah.”
Targum Neofiti I on Genesis 1:1
“From the beginning by means of the first born Son God created and perfected the heavens and the earth.”
Another way to translate Neofiti 1 (resonating well with believers in Jesus, sounding very much like John 1:1-5, 15-18):
“From the beginning with wisdom the Memra (Word) of the Lord created and perfected the heavens and the earth.”
John, Paul and Jude were speaking to a Jewish community that was fully prepared by pre-existing Jewish theology to believe that the Word of God would become flesh and dwell among us. The proclaimed that Yeshua (Jesus) was the very person they were expecting.
18 No one has ever seen God; the only Son,[f] who is at the Father’s side,[g] he (Jesus) has made him (Father God) known.
Maybe you have had doubts about the identity of Jesus, were confused about whether or not he is God as much as his Father is? Maybe something said, prayed, or sung here today touched something inside you. Maybe you feel like you’ve been far fro. GOD and need to come back to him, or perhaps you never understood the importance of Jesus and suddenly now you realize you need to know him?