Jesus may not have said the exact words, “I am God,” but He did indeed claim the divine name of God for Himself. Repeatedly in the book of John, Jesus said, “I AM.” The phrase “I AM” is a title for God. When God called Moses to lead the nation of Israel out of Egypt, He told Moses to tell the nation that “I AM” has sent you (Exodus 3:13-15).
In His ministry, Jesus claimed equality with God the Father when He “said to them, ‘My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I, too, am working.’ For this reason the Jews tried all the harder to kill him; not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God” (John 5:17-18).
Jesus told the Jews “you know me, and you know where I am from. I am not here on my own, but he who sent me is true. You do not know him, but I know him because I am from him and he sent me'” (John 7:28-29). And again He said that He is One with the Father: “Then they asked him, ‘Where is your father?’ ‘You do not know me or my Father,’ Jesus replied. ‘If you knew me, you would know my Father also'” (John 8:19) “‘I tell you the truth,’ Jesus answered, ‘before Abraham was born, I am!'” (John 8:58). “I and the Father are one” (John 10:30).
The Jews knew that Jesus was claiming to be God and they tried to kill Him for blasphemy. So, Jesus said to them, “Why then do you accuse me of blasphemy because I said, “I am God’s Son”? Do not believe me unless I do what my Father does. But if I do it, even though you do not believe me, believe the miracles, that you may know and understand that the Father is in me, and I in the Father.’ Again they tried to seize him, but he escaped their grasp” (John 10:36-39).
Jesus professed His divinity when speaking to the disciples , “Philip said, ‘Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.’ Jesus answered: ‘Don’t you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, “Show us the Father”? Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you are not just my own. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work. Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the miracles themselves. On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you'” (John 14:7-11, 20).
The Son of God declared His Son-ship to the Father saying, “Father, the time has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. I have brought you glory on earth by completing the work you gave me to do. And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I had with you before the world began'” (John 17:1-5). And He added, “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me” (John 17:20-21).
In addition, Jesus accepted worship (Matthew 2:11; 14:33; 28:9, 17; Luke 24:52; John 9:38). He never rebuked people for worshiping Him. If Jesus were not God, He would have told people to not worship Him, just as the angel told John not to worship him (Revelation 19:10).
Finally, if Jesus is not God, He could not have paid the penalty for the sins of mankind (1 John 2:2). A created being, which Jesus would be if He were not God, could not pay the penalty for sins of the world. Only the Creator Himself could atone for humans and satisfy the demands of God’s justice (2 Corinthians 5:21).
In His service,
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