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Do you find yourself shaking your head when you encounter the news? Whether reading, listening or watching, it can be hard to know if you receive the true account of events or some narrative spun to distort or hide the facts. Today, things people decried in the past few years as conspiracy theories have been proven true. Yet, I’m sure that today’s news cycle will include more spin and narrative than actual facts.
When we try to understand who Jesus is, we can also encounter narratives. One such narrative is that Jesus’ followers elevated his status following his death. Over time, they developed the idea he was God. This idea ignores the fact that Jesus’ followers used divine titles for him and worshipped him. It also ignores the fact that Jesus claimed the name of God in John 8:58-59, ‘“I tell you the truth,” Jesus answered, “before Abraham was born, I am!” At this, they picked up stones to stone him, but Jesus hid himself, slipping away from the temple grounds.’ (NIV 1984)
When God called Moses to serve Him, He gave His name as “I am who I am.” Jesus claimed this name. The Jews clearly understood this, because they picked up stones to kill him. Don’t believe the narrative that Jesus never claimed to be God, that his followers invented the idea. Jesus claimed to be the Son of God, accepted worship and claimed the name of God.
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Bumper music “Landing Place” performed by Mark July, used under license from Shutterstock.